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There exists the world’s most perfect way to record action shots with maximum mobility and toughness but it’s not even a camera.

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GoPro cameras have become ubiquitous to action, adventure and travel photography / videography but there is an alternative that I personally prefer. A more accessible, mobile, convenient and reliable choice…

Hitcase Pro for iPhone

GoPro’s success is due to 4 key features of their Hero Cameras; waterproof, shockproof, wide angle and portability. All of which the Hitcase Pro offers and excels at. The Hitcase Pro is not a camera, its an ultra protective case and camera enhancer for the iPhone.

Despite this, assuming you have an iPhone, Hitcases are not only an excellent alternative to the GoPro Hero Cameras but also the overall superior option.

Hitcase Pro for iPhone

– Hitcase Pro for iPhone / The Better GoPro Alternative –

For the first few months of my vagabonding world travels I used a GoPro Hero exclusively, even though I had an iPhone 4 and 5. I never used a chest or head harness but had great use with the wrist strap that was attached to me at all times. This made on the fly filming and photographing extremely convenient for my active and unpredictable #lifestyle of constant travel. Ultimately, that wasn’t enough.

Just a couple of months after using the GoPro Hero, various problems started to plague the function and usability. The issues only got worse as time went by making the camera completely unusable.

Unfortunately the Hitcase Pro at that time was still in development so I was using the newly released iPhone 5 as my primary camera. Surprisingly the quality of videos and photos was on par or better than that of the GoPro. However, I still needed waterproofing, shock-proofing and a wide angle lens.

Hitcase Pro for the iPhone

– Hitcase Pro for the iPhone w/ Sling –

Once I finally got my hands on the Hitcase, I knew this was a damn fine product just by the feel, even before using it.

The Hitcase Pro makes my iPhone into an armored action camera with great tactical features and looks. It feels like a tank in my hands without the weight and bulk. Despite the mil-spec protection and waterproofing, I’m able to get full functionality out of my device, including calls and access to the headphone jack.

I have now been using the Hitcase Pro for a year with heavy use all over the world. Often in punishing conditions that would have otherwise destroyed my iPhone; a sandstorm in Giza, hunting in a Cambodian jungle, clubbing in Seoul, a snowstorm in Berlin, typhoons in Taipei, trekking mountains, and countless underwater activities.

The exceedingly effective protection of the Hitcase Pro also gives me a certain freedom of never having to worry about breaking my precious iPhone. Its quite liberating. I’ve dropped this on concrete, down stairs and even played catch with it like a football (for filming purposes) and never had the slightest problem.

Most importantly, the photos and videos are exceptional. The wide angle is gorgeous, equivalent to the GoPro Hero but sound recording and low light shots are significantly better. Its not just about the end result of the media however, the actual “shooting” process is greater due to the more gripable rectangular shape of the case and the iPhone’s retina screen as a viewfinder. Whereas even the newest GoPro’s don’t have any sort of screen built in – an add-on LCD kit must be purchased separately for $80 adding weight and bulk.

Another reason why GoPro’s make for great action cameras are because of their versatile mounting capabilities. All of which can be also be matched by the Hitcase Pro straight out of the box or for more options with their other harness accessories.

Feeding a Wild Monkey in Lombok, Indonesia - Vagabonding Vinjabond

– Hitcase Pro Photo: Feeding a Wild Monkey in Lombok –

Riding Motorbikes in Vang Vieng, Laos - Vagabonding Vinjabond

– Hitcase Pro Photo: Riding a Motorbike in Vang Vieng –

Legian Street in Bali, Indonesia - Vagabonding Vinjabond

– Hitcase Pro Photo: Legian Street in Bali, Indonesia –

River Tubing in Vang Vieng, Laos - Vagabonding Vinjabond

– Hitcase Pro Photo: Tubing the Mekong River in Laos –

Hahoe Folk Village Cliff, Andong, Korea

– Hitcase Pro Photo: On The Hahoe Folk Village Cliff –

Marina Bay Sands Infinity Pool in Singapore - photo

– Hitcase Pro Photo: Marina Bay Sands Infinity Pool in Singapore –

Having Drinks in VIP at Club Loca in Daegu, South Korea - Vagabonding Vinjabond

– Hitcase Pro Photo: Partying in a Nightclub in Korea –

Life-size Gundam Robot 1/1 Scale in Tokyo - Vagabonding Vinjabond

– Hitcase Pro Photo: Gundam Robot in Tokyo –

Riding on a Longboat at The Gili Islands - Vagabonding Vinjabond

– Hitcase Pro Photo: Riding a Longboat at the Gili Islands –

Backpacking on a mountain in Korea - Vagabonding Background

– Hitcase Pro Photo: Hiking a Mountain in Tongyeong –

With the existence of the Hitcase Pro, if I could have any camera in the world regardless of cost for travel, adventure and action filming, I would choose a phone. Not a DSLR or a GoPro but the iPhone.


– Buy [ Hitcase Pro ] for $120 USD

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16 COMMENTS ///

  1. TechTravelJunkie

    I had, no still have a GoPro Hero 3 and it was the biggest mistake ever. It broke down on us while we were backpacking Europe in the first 30 days and GoPro wouldnt let us exchange for a new one – thats after ridiculous long wait times for their “copy and paste” replies. Anyways, we both have iPhone 5s so we may check out the Hitcases, they seem pretty sweet!

  2. Freeza

    Oooohh just in time… I was in the market for a a wide shot with waterproof casing for my iPhone, been eyeing the Optrix XD5… But it looks kinda girly.

    • John V Cain

      I’m sure the Optrix takes great photos and just as well waterproofing but I believe the transparent plastic is prone to cracking whereas the Hitcase Pro plastic housing can’t crack (unless you really try to). Also, it looks like the Optrix requires your iPhone to wear a sort of secondary case before putting it in the actual case – that means its fit isn’t as firm and a bit annoying when taking in and out. The Hitcase fits the iPhone like skin, as if they were born as one.

  3. Nothus

    Do you use a remote (wireless or not) to snap the picture or start recording on the iPhone? I can see the only advantage with a GoPro is using the iPhone app with it for a remote viewfinder and controls once it’s mounted out of arms reach. Just wondering how you solved this.

    • JOHN V CAIN //

      All my photos and videos were shot while I was still holding the Hitcase. The wide lens captures so much that its fine taking shots within arms length. They actually just came out with the newer version, Hitcase Pro +, it now comes with a extending baton. Also, I used to use the GoPro 2 with the remote, it was too annoying and frustrating to keep.

    • JOHN V CAIN //

      I remember hating the GoPro’s sound being atrocious and the Hitcase is much better – but still far from perfect. However, the just released Hitcase Pro + has 2x better sound recording.

  4. Renata

    That spring cord you are using is just what I need, got the case and will try it out underwater in Croatia soon. Can you please let me know where to get the cord with the hand strap? Many thanks!


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