Skip to Content

Shoot in Protune Flat for Best GoPro Color

Want a great GoPro photography tip? I always shoot in Protune flat because it captures the best color. The Protune flat (flat) option is a little more like shooting in RAW. It gives you way more flexibility in post processing than the default GoPro Color option.

flat helped me get this dreamy look

With Protune flat, image quality is increased because of a higher data capture.

Whether you are shooting still images or video, Protune flat will capture more detail in the shadows and highlights. (You’ll love that when it’s time to edit!)

More reading: What is Protune on GoPro?

What Difference Does Protune Flat Make?

The first time you compare your GoPro Color shots with your Protune flat ones, you might be a little surprised. The Protune flat will look, well, kinda flat :).

Protune flat may also look a little overexposed. At first glance you’ll probably think the GoPro Color shots look better. But, after you settle into a nice secession of post processing, they won’t.

Here is an example of a rather boring shot from my backyard. The first (on the left) is Protune flat, the second is GoPro Color. These shots were taken only a second apart, so the lighting was the same. (Click the image, then click again to see it larger.)


The GoPro Color looks better, right? The flat looks like it has a haze over it.

Surprise, Protune Flat is Way Better!

In this next example, the same two photos were edited in exactly the same way. Get ready to be surprised… I sure was the first time!


Wow! The flat looks alive and dreamy. The GoPro Color, not so much.

It is true that the above GoPro Color shot could look way better with different editing, but the purpose of this test was to show how they would react under the same edit. This way we can easily see the greater potential in the flat.

Lets take a closer look at that Protune flat shot. It’s not so boring now!

flat helped me get this dreamy look

A Closer Look at Shadows and Highlights

When I was playing around with these photos I found it easier to see the difference in black and white.

In the next two photos look closely at the highlights and shadows.


In the flat, you can see more detailed shadows around the base of the trees, especially under the evergreen in the back right corner. I also noticed how the ends of the branches in the left foreground look lit-up. This extra detail is what makes flat better.

What About Shooting Inside?

Here are a couple shots of our dog by the fire. I was shooting in natural light, and again these shots were taken only a second apart.

Can you guess which was shot in flat?

shot in gopro colorshot in flat

It’s pretty easy to tell which captured more detail isn’t it? I love the job flat did with the second photo! I was able to bring out the true colors and details.

If you haven’t experimented with Protune flat yet, now is the time! I’m not very good with tech, but I was able to download the app on my tablet and pair it with my Hero4 black. It only took about 5 minutes. Once that was done it was super easy to turn on Protune and start experimenting.

There is no doubt that you’ll get the biggest bang in post processing with Protune flat. I use Lightroom for editing photos and I love how fun it is to work with flat!

Unless you don’t have time for post processing, then it’s always best to shoot in flat.

Protune flat makes Chica look good!

Chica (our dog) told me she loves Protune flat because of how it helps show off the way the firelight glistens off her fur… 🙂 girls!

Do you shoot in Protune flat? Please share your tips, and your favorite editing platform.


Thursday 18th of April 2019

Very good comparison, thank you for posting. By the way, don't want to sound picky, but I would double check the difference between "then" and "than". No offense.

Bryan Haines

Tuesday 14th of May 2019

Hey Peter - thanks for catching that. Just fixed the two errors.


GoPro Hiking Photography Guide: 19 Tips (Settings, Accessories, Composition...) | GudGear

Wednesday 26th of December 2018

[…] can be a good idea to shoot with Protune on if you’re going to be editing your photos and videos afterwards. Protune captures more […]


Friday 15th of June 2018

Hello, help please, I'm from Los Cabos Mexico, I recently bought gopro 6, I filmed a wedding with video flat and I do not know how to fix it, I have premier pro, I would really appreciate it. Best Regards!

Julian Maytum

Sunday 26th of August 2018

Kevin Conklin

Wednesday 4th of July 2018

Do some googling on how to color grade in premiere pro - you will find some good ones. And you will be very happy that you shot the wedding in flat!

Thank you for this article!

Bob Vila

Friday 26th of February 2016

Very helpful article, thanks for posting. Ive always shot in color, and I will never do that again. I was looking for some helpful side by side comparison shots, this was what I needed. Thanks!

Dena Haines

Monday 7th of March 2016

Thanks so much Bob!

I'm really happy this helped.

And thanks for taking the time to leave a comment. :)