Seriously, GoPro’s webcam mode has been out for something like a year now and this is still a problem.
Anyway, I managed to get another week’s worth of workouts in–the next level in Ring Fit‘s Adventure Mode, a single randomly-selected workout, and the next level in Beat Saber’s Campaign Mode.
But not without continued glitchiness.
I wanted to blame this one (the score, not the glitchiness) on having a considerably smaller monitor than the TV I usually used for the purpose (some of you may have noticed I’ve been stepping up close to read anything ever since I switched to trying to do all of these in my room) and accidentally selecting “advanced” difficulty because I couldn’t see, but nope! Upon reviewing the footage I was in Novice mode the whole time.
I did, however, keep turning when I was supposed to be tilting, so there’s that.
I finally manually updated the GoPro (after having previously updated via the app) to try to get this one working.
Worked just fine (aside from forgetting to switch the browser video to full screen) but the GoPro froze up again right after I stopped recording.
Too late to return it (I have a protection plan but the ordinary “return for a refund” period is expired), it finally occurred to me that I’ve never tested to see if it was similarly defective when used as a regular camera. Kind of an important detail there since I’m planning to use it on my motorcycle.
Got that particular test uploaded and it seems to work like it should.
This leaves me with a few working theories.
One, the webcam software doesn’t work right. I should be able to alleviate this one by using HDMI mode which requires the Media Mod (which I recently bought for an entirely different reason, so at least the only “throwing money at the problem” that will occur here is buying a new capture card if this theory pans out). The gamble here is that it depends on the problem laying within the webcam software–the Hero 9 does not natively support HDMI out, and computers to my awareness do not support HDMI in (not counting Alienware’s passthrough port which bypasses Windows and therefore my full recording options), meaning I need the Media Mod to function as an adapter that still has me going from USB to HDMI and back to USB again to connect everything, so there isn’t a whole lot of difference in hardware to “fix” things compared to my current setup.
Two, my computer (which I already know is outdated) is just not up to the task. This will only be alleviated by continuing to save up for a new computer… and in the meantime, maybe recording gameplay and real-world movement separately and just learning to splice them together dagnabbit!
Three, the GoPro, despite being advertised with the feature, really doesn’t work all that well as a webcam. I keep hearing that the way to solve this problem is to use an actual webcam, but there’s a few problems with that… namely the difference in picture quality and the fact that most webcams are designed with the expectation that you’re sitting right in front of them and don’t have the field of view to accommodate my current use.
Case in point: the video above, a little on the fuzzy side, and with the webcam in “Linear” FOV it frequently cuts off the bottoms of my legs. But this is with my ceiling light at half strength, I have other lighting options I’m working with (trying to find something that gives decent lighting without making me look washed out on other devices like the Wii Fit’s own gamepad) and switching the GoPro’s FOV to “wide” or even “superview” gives me more of the entire room’s dimensions, not just an increased side-to-side view.
My gaming webcam, on the other hand….
Webcam’s attached to the monitor, I’m standing roughly in the middle of the room, and the light’s still at half-strength. Picture is quite grainy and you can’t see much below my knee… which normally would not be a problem but for the fact that I’m focusing on the fitness games.
When I move the webcam to the edge of my desk and move myself back as far as I can go to accommodate field of view, and increase the light to full-strength to accommodate the graininess….
Brighter, obviously, but still on the grainy side, and now it’s my head that’s cut off instead of my legs. I’m short, but clearly not short enough to compensate.
Anywho, for that third “the GoPro just doesn’t work as a webcam despite including the feature” theory, the only real fix to that (barring a fix on GoPro’s end) would be to record gameplay and IRL motion separately.
Any suggestions? Anyone else run into similar trouble?
Suggested products in use (because even with the problems I’m facing, these are some good products depending on what they’re being used for), Amazon Affiliate links included where possible:
- GoPro Hero 9
- GoPro Gooseneck
- GoPro “Jaws” clamp
- Ring Fit Adventure
- Genki ShadowCast capture card
- Oculus Quest (I have the original, thus the link. Between weight and IPD options I don’t expect replacing it with the 2 would improve my migraines.)
- “SURF” ONN brand USB Podcast Microphone