If you’ve landed on this post I’m going to explain what happened recently when I had an issue with my NEW GoPro Karma Grip.
As a long time GoPro user I enjoy making short films of my travels and outdoor activity so when I finally decided to spend the $299 for the Karma Grip to help stabilize my videos I was very excited for its arrival. I purchased it three days before my recent trip to Park City, Utah and with free 2-day shipping and a 30-day money back guarantee the decision was pretty easy. It arrived on time and made the trip. Here is the video to see it in action.
I was very happy with how smooth the video was especially while snowboarding and I had no issue with it the entire trip.
After the trip however, I started having an issue. Under normal working circumstances when you turn on the GoPro Karma Grip it also turns on the GoPro that’s connected to the gimbal. The same goes for turning it off. What started happening though was when the Grip was turned on the GoPro wouldn’t power up. I was having to do that manually and while that’s obviously not a big deal it’s not how the product was designed. On top of that pushing the mode, picture/record button, or tag didn’t do anything while the power button and the tilt/lock buttons would work. When I asked if this was a known issue I was told they had seen it before.
Since there was a 30-day money back guarantee I had some decisions to make. I contacted GoPro Chat Support and here is a brief synopsis of how the 2:30 conversation and troubleshooting went.
- I told them the issue and what troubleshooting I had done.
- We checked the version of both the Karma Grip and the GoPro and updated to the newest firmware.
- We tested by turning on the Karma Grip to see if it would power up the GoPro. It didn’t.
- We then did a hard reset on the Karma Grip by holding down the Mode button for 8-10 seconds which does a full calibration. I was told this usually fixed the issue.
- We tested again and it still didn’t work.
- I was asked to provide a video of the buttons not working which required me to record it and upload it and let them review the video.
- I was also asked to take a picture of the ports on the gimbal.
After close to two hours the tech finally determined that the Karma Grip needed to be replaced and it would be covered under their one year warranty. Great right? Well, not so fast. I asked a few additional questions and I didn’t like the answers I was getting.
It’s never a good sign when a product that’s less than 30 days old malfunctions and needs to be replaced, but it was good to know they were going to replace it under the warranty. However, when I asked what would happen if the product malfunctioned again within the one year warranty period I was told that since they would have already replaced it once they wouldn’t be able to replace it again, but they would “figure something out” if that happened. That gave me pause because I really don’t want a $300 paper weight. I could get a replacement and if it happens again in two weeks or 10 months to not know how they would handle that was unsettling. As the discussion continued I told them that unless they could reassure me that the product would be replaced if it happened again within the one year I wasn’t comfortable getting a replacement, but instead would like to return the product for a refund. They could only tell me that if it happened again they would do the best they could to work with me and wouldn’t leave me hanging, but also said they would have to get approval and discuss it with management in order to even let me know if a new one would be provided. I choose to return it. This way if I decided to get another Karma Grip it would be a new purchase which would come with a new 30 day return period as well as a one year warranty.
It’s unfortunate that GoPro won’t fully back their product in the event of malfunction when it’s determined it’s a defect even if they’ve replaced it once within the one year period. I hope if GoPro happens to ever read this they will take my experience into consideration and understand as consumers we want to know if there’s a warranty it’s going to cover the product.
Has anyone else experienced this issue?