I have a GoPro HERO3 Black edition that I’ve been using for a couple of months now and suddenly, for seemingly no reason, it started shutting off all by itself when recording at 4k and 2.7k. [Updated 2015: Recording resolution has proven irrelevant to the issue]. Batteries charged, sd card “clean”, yet missed footage… What gives?
At first I thought I had a problem with the camera itself, so I immediately went to the GoPro site and went through the rigamarole of doing a manual firmware update, just to make sure everything was as it should be. No luck… Away I went to the forums, where I found all kinds of suggestions such as turning the ProTune feature off, opting for higher quality memory cards (who’s better than Sandisk?), and various pontifications over the true accuracy of the “10” rating (10mbps transfer capacity) on the micro SD cards. I tried various suggestions, including turning the ProTune feature off, all with minimal improvement on my situation. I simply could not record anything with a higher resolution than 1440…
Finally, in an act of desperation, I did the most simple thing imaginable and viola! Problem solved… What was it?
REFORMAT YOUR CARD IN THE CAMERA.
Evidently, just like the hard drive on your Windows based PC, the micro SD card will fragment over time, and even though you’re erasing old files as you go and the card may appear empty, this fragmenting will interrupt the high transfer rates necessary to support shooting at such a high resolution. Reformatting the card in the camera gives you a truly clean slate to work off of and should eliminate any future premature shut downs. Now, I do it before every use, and haven’t had a problem since.
Exact instructions on reformatting the card can be found here.