Reviews, Video

The MOTA Wireless Charger for GoPro enables continuous recording

mota charger

MOTA was a company unknown to me until I saw an announcement of their Wireless Charger for GoPro. The charging station is a nicely designed, glossy black and white station that can hold and charge a GoPro while it is in its mounting case, as well as a battery and a USB device. MOTA claims the Wireless Charger for GoPro keeps your camera running.

The MOTA Wireless Charger for GoPro works with a HERO3/3+/4 on the principle of inductive charging. It comes with a wireless receiver and a charging cable. The wireless receiver connects to the GoPro’s USB interface and wraps around the base of the device. The receiver’s metal parts are enclosed by a thin sheet of plastic to allow the camera to be kept inside its mounting case while charging. The receiver looked flimsy to me, but there’s little reason to ever remove it, provided you always shoot with the GoPro in the same case.

Depending on the HERO model you use, the MOTA Wireless Charger for GoPro supports different housings. For both HERO3 and HERO3+ models, the standard housing case (the waterproof one) can be used with or without the GoPro BacPac. The HERO4 model is supported with more options. You can also charge it with its Touch BacPac and Skeleton housing. In my experiments, HERO3/3+ were also supported with the skeleton housing in place. Documentary makers who use GoPros often use metal mounting housings with a slew of mounting holes, however, must not use the MOTA charger.

The MOTA Wireless Charger for GoPro is water-resistant up to a degree, i.e. you can use it in light rain, but I wouldn’t subject it to immersion or even splashing water.

mota charger

Now for the tests I ran. The charger needs a USB port so you can charge using a computer’s port or a wall adapter. Charging from empty to fully charged took well over six hours. I could then place a HERO3+/4 in the MOTA charger’s slot. The slot is only meant to grab the housing’s “feet” — where you fix the actual buckle — and optimally position the wireless receiver. Once mounted and active, the MOTA will charge the GoPro from displaying one battery block to fully charged in under an hour. In my second test I ran the GoPro HERO3+ test device off the already used MOTA Wireless Charger for GoPro for about an hour before it got depleted to about a quarter of power left.

The wireless power transmission was quite good. Even when I removed the camera from the MOTA base, the charging process kept going until I was about 1cm away from the attachment recess. As you’ll rarely run into problems with a GoPro being dislodged — the base holds the HERO housing firmly — this is only a theoretical test.

In total you will have the opportunity to shoot for about five to six hours on end with quite a good part of your footage shot with the GoPro mounted on the MOTA. Of course, mounting the camera on the MOTA rules out action filming. But MOTA’s claim is true: you can record continuously with their wireless charger.

A better alternative if you own two GoPros in my opinion, is that you use one HERO for shooting while you charge the other and then switch between them when there’s a scene change.

With the MOTA Wireless Charger for GoPro you can charge three devices simultaneously, which extends the usefulness of this battery/charging system even further. The MOTA costs about €125.00. An extra wireless receiver is about €44.50. MOTA ships to Europe.