Making a GoPro from Spare Parts – Cheaper and Easier?

by Oscar
Published: Last Updated on

You can build a working GoPro Hero 6 and 8 from spare parts, and it can actually be cheaper than buying the whole camera. If you want a naked GoPro, this is way more convenient as you won’t have to spend time taking the camera apart.

Check out my tutorials on Naked GoPro 6, and Naked GoPro 8.

Main Board + Lens Module  = Working GoPro

Hero 6:

Hero 8:

These two components are all you need to make a working GoPro!

AliExpress seems to be main place you can get GoPro spare parts from. I bought two hero 6 main boards and 3 camera sensor modules from there, all working as expected. Shipping to the UK took about 2 weeks, so it’s not too bad.

Hero 6 Logic Board

Hero 6 Logic Board

Hero 8 Logic Board

Hero 8 Logic Board

Hero 6 Lens Module

Hero 6 Lens Module

You might want to put it in a case, like the BetaFPV GoPro Lite case for the Hero 6. These cases also come with BEC board which makes powering them straightforward.

For the Hero 8, there’s the URUAV/NamelessRC case:

What Else You Might Need?

 

It’s useful having the back touch screen, you can use it to change camera settings, check if the main board and lens module are working correctly, and you need the screen to get the WiFi password to use the phone APP.

You can get a spare touch screen from tearing down a GoPro, or you can get it as spare part. The touch screen and buttons can be reused for your other Naked GoPro’s:

Here is a pin-out of the GoPro Hero 6 main board, and how to connect the touch screen.

And here’s the pinout of the Hero 8 and connector for the touch screen:

If you’ve never owned a decased GoPro before, maybe you should tear one down first, then you’d have the screen and buttons. But of course you can just bought the spare parts, it’s up to you.

Edit History

  • Jul 2020 – article created
  • Apr 2021 – updated product links for Hero 8

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18 comments

Konstantin 2nd August 2021 - 8:50 pm

Hi Oscar,
I’m stuck with the problem that my naked Hero8 starts boot-looping when the lens module is connected. This doesn’t occur when I disconnect the module or plug in the ribbon-cable on its own.
Am I right that the short circuit is prop located around the cable connector?
The cable and lens module cant be faulty bc i just recently bought them.
I would appreciate if u would share your ideas on solving this issue.

Thanks for the overwhelming quantity of content on FPV.
Much Love from Germany.

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Michael 26th June 2021 - 9:48 pm

Hi Oscar,
Do you know if a Hero 8 camera sensor will fit on a Hero 6 mainboard, with the ribbon cable connector? Seems to be the same, but I can imagine the differences are in the software ..

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Oscar 28th June 2021 - 1:33 pm

No I don’t think so

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alan mccluskey 18th April 2021 - 10:49 pm

Cc la fleche made a hero 6 internal to a quad, i wish he had kept pics to document it, would really love to have a gopro with the protection of the frame.

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babipsylon 11th December 2020 - 1:37 pm

Anyone else who started from spare parts without ability to switch to English ( Chinese?)
My guess is that the English language is not part of my firmware, as I can set it to English via the go pro app, but nothing happens. It’s already on 1.6 so another update file to 1.6 does not seem to run from the sd card.
Only solution for that is to go to 2.1 and go back to 1.6 with the english language pack as part of the firmware, I guess?… Meer weergeven

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Dani 6th October 2020 - 11:49 pm

So, maybe a stupid question but I couldn’t find the answer. When you order one of those boards does it comes with a firmware on it, no programming needed?just plug and play?

Thanks for your tutorials Oscar!

Cheers from Spain

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Oscar 8th January 2021 - 10:16 pm

Yea it was plug and play for me.

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Ruben van Eupen 26th September 2020 - 9:41 pm

Were customs duties involved, or are they smart enough to declare lower values at aliexpress?

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Oscar 29th September 2020 - 11:07 pm

I didn’t have to pay custom :)

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Bk 26th September 2020 - 8:17 am

Yeah. The world would be such an awesome place if no one shared knowledge. Djeez…

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Emmett S 22nd September 2020 - 5:58 am

Weird quesion, but do you think i can build a hero 5 black, and then using enough vibration dampening have similar results? if not do you think i could use a hero 5 lens on the 6, just cause its almost 40$ cheaper.

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Technicus fpv 16th August 2020 - 11:00 pm

So what if prices went up, it’s natural when demands are higher.
I did not know about this option before i read this article.
Thank you for so many valuable advices Oscar.

Keep up the good work!

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EDUARDO ven 21st July 2020 - 10:30 pm

Lol the comments are priceless xd
Thank you for sharing Óscar

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George 21st July 2020 - 7:45 pm

This hobby has only come this far because we all share info.

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Jesper 21st July 2020 - 7:15 pm

I have a broken gopro hero 7 black with dead mainboard.

Can I use a hero 6 mainboard and keep screen and use with hero 6?

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Oscar 31st July 2020 - 3:01 pm

I’ve never tried this myself, I’ve heard the Gyro sensors are in different modules between 6 and 7 and that might cause issues when using Reelsteady. Not 100% sure really.

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Phil 20th July 2020 - 8:19 pm

damn it, he showed how to do it, increased demand, and now you have to pay a few bucks more. next time, there should be no article about this at all, so that noone knows about it! solved!

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Hélio 20th July 2020 - 7:38 pm

Congrats!!!! You made all price of this parts increase a lot in aliexpress!!!

Reply