Modified $849 GoPro HERO12 lets you mount Professional DSLR Lenses on your Action Camera

Not many people really appreciate the GoPro for exactly how advanced it is. For a device that small, it boasts a mighty sensor and can capture media in incredibly high resolutions like 5.3K (with image stabilization no less)… but that tiny form factor has one trade-off, the fact that it doesn’t support interchangeable lenses – and, to be honest, that seems like the one thing that makes photographers and videographers not take the GoPro seriously, even though it outputs videos comparable to larger cameras like the ones from RED and Hasselblad.

So what if you could just switch out the GoPro’s fisheye lens for something much more advanced, like some serious DSLR or film camera lenses? Well, the folks at Canada-based Back-Bone managed to hack together a GoPro Hero12 to make it universally compatible with a whole range of DSLR lenses. The Back-Bone H12PRO comes with quite a few interesting tricks up its sleeve. The front features a special mounting armature to load professional camera lenses, giving your GoPro Hero12 the ability to shoot in ultrawide but also telescopic, or even macro, depending on the lenses you’ve got on hand.

Designer: Back-Bone

For the folks at Back-Bone, creating this modified GoPro was about allowing the action camera to achieve its full potential. The GoPro Hero12 is a multimedia beast, capable of shooting 5.3K HDR videos and even stills with its 27MP shooter. For a camera this capable, restricting it to a simple fisheye lens is quite a disservice if you ask me, which is why the modified H12PRO is so compelling.

The H12PRO lets you attach a variety of mounting brackets, giving you the choice between M12, CS, and C-mount lenses. It’s pretty much the same size as the existing GoPro, which means it also supports the company’s Media Mod, allowing you to add extra accessories like directional mics, flashes, etc. The H12PRO also packs GoPro’s Enduro Battery, offering longer battery life, especially in cold conditions.

With the Media Mod and the ability to pretty much attach any kind of lens to your GoPro, the H12PRO gives you the most powerful camera setup that can fit in your pocket. It’s cheaper and smaller than a flagship phone, and shoots higher quality content than cameras twice or thrice its size. The H12PRO has a tripod mount on the bottom, allowing you to attach it to tripods, gimbals, or even small-ish drones with decent payload abilities. Heck, the folks at Back-Bone are also selling an optional Micro Four-Thirds mounting plate to let you attach MFT lenses to your GoPro. If that isn’t the wildest, most brilliant upgrade to the world’s most advanced action camera, I don’t know what is. After all, an action camera is just a camera designed to capture high quality content at a great frame rate, right? So why not exploit its abilities to the max?!

Back-Bone’s H12PRO is available on its website. The $849 kit includes the following:

  • H12PRO modified HERO12 Black camera
  • Aluminum Tripod Mount
  • Original folding GoPro mount
  • Enduro Battery
  • 5mm C-Mount ring
  • M12 to CS adapter
  • M12 locking ring
  • Plastic cap (C-Mount)
  • USB-C Cable
  • Curved adhesive mount
  • Mounting buckle
  • Spare protective glass filter

Understandably, a modified HERO12 won’t be covered under GoPro’s warranty program, but Back-Bone does offer a 6-month repair guarantee against faulty parts or defects, and a zero-labor-cost repair warranty for a year (you just pay for parts and shipping).