How to connect a GoPro to a Mac in 3 different ways

When it comes to action cameras, there are lots of options available. But one name has become synonymous with the category, and that is GoPro. If you watch a mountain biking video on YouTube or a hang gliding video on Vimeo, there’s a good chance it was shot on a GoPro. Maybe you’re thinking about buying one yourself. If so, you’re probably wondering how to get the videos you shoot off the GoPro and onto your Mac so that you can edit and then share them. We’ll show you how to connect GoPro to Mac with USB or card reader and via Wi-Fi, so you can do just that.

Why connect GoPro to a Mac?

Do you need to connect your GoPro to a Mac? Not necessarily, you could upload videos to a GoPro’s cloud service directly from the camera using Wi-Fi. However, connecting to your Mac first allows you to edit your videos before you choose which to upload and share. It also gives you more options for sharing them. For example, from your Mac, you could upload to YouTube or Vimeo.


Connecting your GoPro to your Mac is a very convenient way of accessing your videos and editing them on your Mac. However, editing video is a resource-hungry task, so it’s a good idea to make sure your Mac is in good shape before you start. The best way to do that is to carry out regular maintenance by running macOS maintenance scripts, repairing disk permissions, and reindexing Spotlight. You could do that using lots of different tools, or you could use just one to do everything. We think that using one tool is much simpler and recommend CleanMyMac X. It can do all those tasks, as well as free up RAM, thin Time Machine snapshots, and clear out DNS cache — which may solve any problems you have connecting your GoPro via Wi-Fi. You can download it for free and try it out for yourself here.

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How to connect GoPro to Mac

GoPro stores the videos it shoots on an SD card, so there are a few options for connecting to your Mac. You could remove the card from the camera and use a card reader. Or you could connect the camera directly to your Mac. Finally, you can use Wi-Fi to transfer videos from the camera to your Mac. We’ll go through these options, explain the benefits of each, and show you how to do them.

SD card

The main benefit of the SD card method is its flexibility. You can remove the SD card from the GoPro, replace it with another, and the camera can still be used while you connect the SD card to your Mac. The downside is that as most recent Macs don’t have an SD card slot, you’ll need a card reader. You may have one already, perhaps in a dock, hub, or another accessory. But if not, you’ll need to buy one. Once you’ve got the SD card reader — make sure it has a microSD slot before you buy it — you just connect it to your Mac and slot in the card from the GoPro. It will mount in the Finder, and you can copy your videos from it. If the reader has a USB-A connector and you have a recent Mac that only has USB-C slots, you may need an adapter or specialist cable.

Image Capture

The main benefit of connecting your GoPro directly to your Mac is that it doesn’t require any additional hardware. GoPros now come with a USB-C cable, so you won’t need an adapter.

  1. Take the USB-C cable that came with your GoPro and plug one end into the camera and the other into a USB slot on your Mac.
  2. Switch the camera on.
  3. Go to your Applications folder and double-click Image Capture to open it.
  4. Select your GoPro in the sidebar on the left.
  5. Click on the dropdown menu next to ‘Import to’ at the bottom of the window and choose where to save the imported videos.
  6. Click Download All.


This method allows you to connect to your GoPro over Wi-Fi and stream video and audio to your Mac as well as browse videos and transfer them. It requires a third-party app called Camera Suite for GoPro, which is available on the Mac App Store.

  1. On your GoPro’s settings, go to Preferences > Wireless Connections > Connect Device.
  2. Choose app mode.
  3. On your Mac, click on the Wi-Fi icon in the menu bar or Control Center. Choose the GoPro SSID.
  4. If necessary, type in the password that should be in the settings information on your GoPro.
  5. Open Camera Suite and choose your GoPro.

Why connect a GoPro to a Mac? Because there’s no better way to edit your videos and make them look amazing. And there’s no easier way to share them once they’re ready to go out into the world. There are lots of different ways you get your videos onto your Mac. Choose the method that works best for you and follow the instructions above to get your GoPro connected and start editing your videos.

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