Now, You Can Sync and Embed Timecode in GoPro Footage

SyncBac Pro wirelessly syncs GoPro HERO4 with pro camera and audio.

SyncBac Pro is a GoPro accessory that both embeds timecode into GoPro footage and can also wirelessly sync multiple GoPro cameras with each other—as well as with professional camera and audio systems. The manufacturer, Timecode Systems, announced SyncBac Pro at NAB 2016. However, the product did not start shipping until late last year. 

This should make post-production much more efficient, eliminating much of the labor of synchronizing multiple streams of non-time coded footage.

The device simply clips into the HERO Bus 30 pin port on the rear of the camera, both attaching it to the camera and eliminating the need for external connectors. It is fully compatible with all standard GoPro BacPac backdoor housings. Its internal battery lasts 12 hours, and it operates over the long range 865 to 923MHz frequency band. 

Timecode can be generated using either Timecode Systems :pulse, :wave, or Mini TRx timecode generators/metadata hubs. All connected devices can then be integrated into Timecode Systems' production workflow via the wireless timecode and metadata monitoring and control application, B:LINK Hub. The B:LINK Hub application allows you to control and monitor all of the cameras that are synced on the system from one interface. This includes: starting/stopping, putting cameras to sleep, monitoring media and battery life, and changing all camera settings, such as frame rate and white balance.

In addition to integrating GoPro cameras into a standard video professional production workflow, the device may be particularly useful in VR/360 video production. Timecode Systems will be making new announcements this year at NAB regarding the company's focus on VR/360 workflows. Their goal is to view, control, and monitor each camera in a spherical array of multiple GoPro cameras, individually, from one interface. This should make VR production—and, more importantly, post-production—much more efficient, eliminating much of the labor of synchronizing multiple streams of non-time coded footage.

Each SyncBac Pro unit retails at $269, which could be pretty pricey on a large array. Do you have any insights as to how to deal with timecode and camera control issues in VR production cheaply? Let us know in the comments.     

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5 Comments

This is pretty cool, albeit expensive. Here is the thing, I have a Hero 4, and two Hero 5's .....I only use the Hero 4 on shots where there is a chance of the camera not "surviving" the adventure. So am I missing something, or does it seem like a bad business plan to develop a product that doesn't work with the current version of the camera??....signed...confused!

March 24, 2017 at 6:27AM

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Michael and Paul, this question is top of mind for me. It's a hard road when one manufacturer ties themself to another, exclusively. I thought that this product was worth a look, so I wanted to put it out there to get feedback from readers. My plan is to talk to them at NAB and ask that question, what their product roadmap looks like (are they looking at YI Technology?--I'm posting an article about them today), and many other things. This is a neat solution. Please, let me know, as action cam or VR users, what do you want to know about this product and what would you like to see in it?

March 24, 2017 at 9:26AM

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Craig Mieritz
Color, Light and Camera Geek
610

Yeah, I think they thought, like a lot of people, that GoPro would keep the same port on the back in future iterations of their camera. I am sure they were a little annoyed that GoPro decided to ax that feature of the camera in the Hero 5, making their work obsolete for future generations. Also, there were a couple of drones that relied on that bus port for their video feed connection, i.e. 3DR Solo.

Definitely puts them in a tough spot for sure.

March 24, 2017 at 11:00AM

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Many questions for them, especially with YI Technology and their focus on VR

March 24, 2017 at 11:44AM

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Craig Mieritz
Color, Light and Camera Geek
610

lemme just attach this to my new GoPro and... DANGit.

March 24, 2017 at 7:53AM

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Paul S
74