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Review: Polar Pro PowerPole

Review: Polar Pro PowerPole

While most photography gadgets solve one problem, the Polar Pro PowerPole Battery-Integrated GoPro Pole solves two, combining a backup power source and an extension for your GoPro.

You can use it with other action cameras if you get a GoPro-to-standard 1/4 inch – 20 mounting thread adapter, which you can find for under $20.

The aluminum PowerPole extends from 17 to 30 inches, weighs 13 ounces and can extend filming times up to 10 hours, according to the manufacturer.

Most action-style cameras have very small batteries, so any help to keep you powered up is always important. As our high-tech devices keep getting smaller, it’s tough for the batteries to keep up.

While using the PowerPole gives you plenty of battery power, it doesn’t give you a great amount of extension, making it a little tougher to get full-body selfie-style photographs or video as you take a run down the slopes or skateboard.

The PowerPole is designed for action-style sports. It is not waterproof, so this limits its use. I tried it out on a hike and there was no problem, but it’s not going to work for surfing or water skiing.

If photographing snow sports interests you, take it out on the ski slopes, but you need to be careful. It does have rubber guards over the two USB ports but you’ll still need to use care not to allow water or snow in the ports when the cord is plugged in to one of them. When you’re working with the GoPro camera you need to use the  GoPro Skeleton Housing or the Frame, which are designed for working in dry conditions.

These cases allow you access to the USB power port on the camera. Caution should be used since both of these cases will leave your camera unprotected from the elements. You can’t use it with the GoPro waterproof housing since it covers up the power port.

Since the pole does include batteries, it is heavier than others I have tried, but it felt very solid and I had no problem keeping it steady on my hike.

You can charge an additional USB device at the same time since there are two power ports, which is a nice feature. It was no problem charging the camera and phone at the same time during a break in the action. You charge the internal batteries via a micro USB port near the grip. The power switch is located next to it and three taps turn it on.

It’s really a tough call. There is some convenience in the all-in-one option, but using a cheaper waterproof pole with more extension and carrying an extra GoPro battery or USB charger to use during a break would certainly be another option.

robert.lachman@latimes.com

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Read more reviews and photography tips by Robert Lachman

 

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