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It's no secret that GoPro cameras are capable of taking some pretty amazing video, and it's also very well known that they struggle at underwater video without the help of some add-ons. The go-to solution for colour correction was typically some sort of clip-on red filter that saved you from either shelling out the money for a big lighting system or from doing loads of digital magic to grade the color of the video in post.
There are however, a few problems with these filters. One is that they are often flimsy and can fall off the lens, and the other issue is that they just don't cut it for any sort of diving outside the "norm".
Backscatter realised this and decided to funnel their money and time into research and development of a better system. In the end, they went over budget, but came out with probably the best GoPro accessory to hit the market yet. The Flip 3.0 and 3.1 filters revolutionized the market by offering 4 different dive filters as well as a macro lens and 2 other 55mm photography filters.
Now they've done it again with the Flip 4, making it better than ever before, and we hope to explain the differences between the old and new model and which set is right for you.
When you get any of the Flip 4 Filter sets, the first thing that is apparent is how much care they have taken with this set. It looks great, and when you open it everything is carefully packaged and secure. Whether you go for the single filter set or the Pro set, your Flip and filters are stored in a neoprene sleeve which not only keeps them safe on their journey to you, but also keeps everything together and scratch-free when you are transporting the set.
One of the most evident upgrades from the Flip 3.1 to the Flip 4 is the material. While the 3.1 was made out of heavy-duty plastic and had a very polished finish, the aircraft-grade aluminium of the Flip 4 looks and feels so much nicer. Using aluminium means the set is just as light as before, but is much more hard-wearing. Clicking the filters into place in front of the lens feels much more secure. No matter what set you decide on, the quality of materials and construction will be evident.
Lets start with the Flip 4 Three Filter Kit. For most divers, this kit offers everything you would ever need to take incredible underwater video with your GoPro. This kit contains the Dual Filter Flip, with a top and side filter. This means you can switch between filters on a dive, useful when doing multi-level dives or even just filming the whole decent for a deep dive. It comes with the Dive and Deep filters attached, ideal for filming 20-50 feet or 50 feet and below, respectively. Also included is the Shallow filter, for depths between 5-20 feet, perfect for snorkelling. The filters are easy to remove and there is storage in the neoprene wallet for the filter you are not currently using.
Next up, the Flip 4 Single Filter kit. This set is great if you need a basic dive filter, but want one that is sturdy, or if you only ever do one type of diving at a time. The Single filter kit only has a side filter, not a top one, but if you don't need to switch filters during or between dives, that may be all you need. The Dive Filter comes attached and covers most diving, but any other filter can be bought separately to suit your needs.
Last but certainly not least, the Flip 4 Pro Package. This set includes everything in the three filter kit, as well as the 55mm +15 macro lens. If you are really serious about getting the most out of your underwater video then this is the set for you. The specially-corrected macromate lens allows you to film the tiniest of subjects as if they were in the palm of your hand. If you have used the GoPro to film small subjects before, you will know its wide-angle lens makes it hard to get the subject to fill the frame without shoving the camera in the creatures face and disturbing it. The macro lens eliminates all that, and the best part is, you can still flip it away and use another filter for your normal shooting!
Other good accessories for the Flip 4 are the Greenwater filter, optimised for filming in cold or fresh water, and the Neoprene protective pouch to keep your set safe when transporting it attached to the GoPro.
The Flip 4 is compatible with the Hero 4, 3+, 3 and Dive Housing (without flat lens). Backscatter has also created great videos on attaching the filters to your camera and changing a filter, which can be found here.