How To: Mod a Mini USB Cable to Add External Power to an Enclosed GoPro Hero3 Camera

Mod a Mini USB Cable to Add External Power to an Enclosed GoPro Hero3 Camera

How to Mod a Mini USB Cable to Add External Power to an Enclosed GoPro Hero3 Camera

Since the emergence of GoPro, the company's cameras have been been on a steady incline for the past several years. Adventure enthusiasts had difficulty recording their extreme activities without a huge price tag before the GoPro came along in 2002.

Now, every surfer, skateboarder, paraglider, and base jumper has a GoPro strapped to their head, recording every crazy moment for the world to see.

Image via fiveten.com

However, one problem with the GoPro is the battery life. The GoPro Hero3, currently the most popular model, can record at 1080p over 30fps for a paltry 88 minutes.

While this may not be an issue for people recording a short adventure, it becomes a problem for those trying to record a timelapse.

GoPro has dealt with this problem by introducing the Frame, a small plastic mount that allows you to connect an external power source to shoot a video while recording. But, it's an unnecessary expenditure (costing $40+), since you already have all the pieces you need right in your GoPro Hero3 box.

By modding the Mini-B USB cable and using the skeleton backdoor that came with the GoPro Hero 3, Instructables user zplus was able to connect his own external power supply without spending $40+ for the Frame mount.

To start, you'll need a few tools:

  • Mini-B USB cable
  • Wire strippers/cutters
  • Long nose pliers
  • Small rotary cutting tool
  • Glue

First, zplus used a wire cutter to remove the plastic molding surrounding the end of the USB cable. He also took apart the metal casing.

Image via instructables.com

He then bent the USB pins at a right angle and glued the metal casing back onto the end of the cable, using the rotary cutter to trim the side walls of the main connector body.

Sure, you can go buy a super cheap 90-degree Mini-B USB cable, but it still won't fit within the GoPro Hero 3's casing.

Image via instructables.com

Finally, he plugged it in to make sure it worked well and then placed his skeleton backdoor on.

Image via instructables.com

Want to make your own? Check out zplus's full tutorial for more details and photos.

Photo by FiveTen

4 Comments

Would that work if I connect the gopro to my android as a screen through mini USB plug?

Ok This goes way beyond retarded!!! and i have a learning disability so I'm aloud to use that word. Its a skeliton case there for not water resistant. So instead of destroying a good mini usb cable and taking a chance of distorting the metal casing that plugs into your new camera and permanently ruining a $399 camera. Why not just Dremel a slot in the side of the case where the jack is and plug it straight into the camera un adulterated :) you have no Dremel tool. use a soldering iron

and melt a perfect slot for it to fit. :) ShiiiiT! Don't have one of those ;/

Heat a small screw driver on your stove till nice and red and it will cut through the skelition case like butter and clean the excess melted off with a mat knife or razor blade. Thats it 5 minutes its safe fast n won't void your warranty n takes very limited mechanical skills. Well then case warranty is toast but its a case n a skeleton! Had holes to begin with. LOl

I covered it all so in don't ever have to reply to insane but what if….

Oh shiitt what if your sky diving like in the picture and the mini usb plug gets pulled on and breaks in your camera :o Well you better have a really long extension cord to reach the plug your transformer on the other end is plugged into or your F#@ked any way! If you go to the link to the full tutorial its a loooong ass process and takes rotary tools any way. This hits so many levels of OHHH wait a minute! That i actually took the time to set up an account and say Shhhhhit! I couldn't pass 10th grade n if you have tools Why destroy a plug and put disclaimers you may destroy your camera. When you can put a simple slot in yhr side of a cheap skeleton case witch are cheap and don't void the warenty on your camera n will take 5 minutes. Disclaimer this may and will void the warranty on your skeleton case witch is a few $ on eBay. Orion out Peace Knowledge Love Harmony

The skeleton case is an interchangeable door. Why would I want to destroy the waterproof case by drilling a hole in it? I can change the back door back to the waterproof case and still have a waterproof case.

I never know how to do this stuff not until I saw this website of yours. Will it work with a Samsung J7 Prime android phone? Will show this to my friends in our publishers office and I am sure they will all be amazed!

Share Your Thoughts

  • Hot
  • Latest