GoPro without a doubt dominates the HD camera market, and I suppose in its own right it has made a mark and arguably, brought attention to the portable cam nitch, but really why all the attention?
On a recent trip I wanted an affordable cam that was easy to operate with gloves, and also had water resistant abilities as I expected to possibly encounter very heavy rain, after some searching I purchased the ContureHD.
I would also buy used a first generation GoPro from a friend so I would have another camera angle as well as a backup camera.
The ContureHd Is very easy to operate, it has one big slide lever and a loud audible click so you know when it is on, is is in all aspects absolutely idiot proof.
It is waterproof up to six feet, and came with a waterproof plastic case for deeper submersion. The video is Identical to every other HD camera on the market which is 1080p.
The Go pro has a button and various modes to click on which is actually a bit confusing. It comes in a waterproof case and the GoPro itself, is not waterproof. I grabbed this camera for my recent Philippines trip and I was so disappointed that much of my video did not come out. It also had a problem with the HD cards and even though I purchased several other 2gb cards, I could only get one to work. Researching on the net concluded this was indeed a problem with early GoPros.
The GoPro sits in the closet now and will go on ebay for the next sucker. I realize there are now four generations of Gopro on the market, however with my initial problems and other more viable options on the market, I would not waste my money, not to mention other alternatives with the same 1080p capability are a couple hundred dollars cheaper.
If you want a good cam and bang for your buck, get something other than the GoPro, if you need to be part of that crowd, then well, pay your extra couple hundred dollar initiation fee.