Browning Spec Ops Elite HP4 Review

Trailcampro Comprehensive Score:


Browning Spec Ops Elite HP4 Review

What is not to love about the Browning Spec Ops HP4? This is a no glow IR trailcam with unsurpassed video quality and takes excellent photos. The Spec Ops HP4 is extremely fast and lasts up to 3 years on 8 AA batteries. That speaks for itself. - TCP Staff

Model #BTC-8E-4HP | Browning Spec Ops Elite HP4 Owners Manual


Trailcampro Comprehensive Score:


Picture Quality:92/100

22 Mpxl Photos (interpolated) | 1920 x 1080p Video Resolution

Battery Life:36 Months (pics) or 3.8 Months (videos)

Using 35 pics day + night | Using 15 vids day + night

Trigger Speed & Detection:93/100

Trigger & Recovery: 0.01 s. + 0.6 s. (Pictures) | 0.4 s. + 0.6 s. (Videos) | 90' Range

Quality of Design:90/100

8 AA Batteries | 12-vot External Battery Jack | 2" Internal Viewer

Browning Spec Ops Elite HP4 Trail Camera Review


  • Incredible video quality
  • Excellent picture quality
  • 36 months of battery life
  • Insanely fast detection speeds
  • Easy to use and set up


  • Detection zone is wider than the field of view by 13°
  • Does not work well with NiMH batteries

Picture Quality: 92/100

Photo resolution: 22 mpxl (interpolated)

Video Resolution: 1920x1080 @ 60 fps w/ audio

Flash Type: No Glow IR

It is really hard to criticize the picture quality of the HP4 cameras. Daytime pictures are colorful, clear, and realistic. Night pictures have great contrast, improved flash range, and stop motion really well - especially for a no glow IR trail camera.

If pictures are hard to find fault with, video is even harder! The Spec Ops HP4 shoots at 1920 x 1080 at 60 frames per second. The result is a video that is smooth, clear, and incredibly realistic. Videos are outstanding all-around.

Browning has released a firmware update to correct over-exposure in the first few frames of videos. This firmware is for the Browning Spec Ops Elite HP4 only. Installing it on any other camera will cause the camera to not function any longer.

Browning Spec Ops Elite HP4 Software Upgrade Instructions

Browning Spec Ops Elite HP4 Firmware update file

Night IR Blur Test

The equipment for the test consists of a target moving along a track from left to right at a constant speed controlled by a stepper motor and a sensor to trigger the capture of a picture near the center of the field of view of a trail camera.

The target is moving at 1.25 feet per second and is 10 feet from the camera at the center of field of view. The test is conducted in a dark room. Two pictures are taken, one with the target not moving and one with the target in motion. A visual comparison can now be made of the two pictures. All settings that affect the quality of night photos will be tested.

Blur Reduction

No Motion

Blur Reduction

W/ Motion


No Motion


W/ Motion

Long Range

No Motion

Long Range

W/ Motion

What if you purchase from us and aren't happy with the image quality?

This is a common question and we have a very simple solution. Call, email, or chat with us and we can take a look at the images and offer suggestions or immediately tell if something is wrong with the camera. If so, we will warranty the Spec Ops Elite camera for you (with the free 2-Year warranty you receive from us) or return the camera for a full refund (within 90 days of purchase). You have control of the process, remember, we work for you.

Megapixel Ratings:

In the past, many people get confused with the megapixel rating trail camera manufacturers advertise. Companies inflate the mpxl rating to attract eyes to their products. They do this through interpolation, which digitally adds megapixels to a photo without actually improving the picture.

The best way to judge picture quality is to look at actual pictures. You will notice this the most when you zoom in on a full-size image that a camera has taken. The details of the photo will appear hazy or even digitized. This is normal, and to be expected.

Battery Life: 98/100

Picture & Video Resting Power (on): 0.45 mW

Picture Daytime/Nighttime Power Consumption: 1.1 Ws | 1.2 Ws

Video Daytime/Nighttime Power Consumption: 22.4 Ws | 37.9 Ws

Picture Mode

If this camera were to take 35 day and 35 night pictures every 24 hours, it would last 36.3 months in the field on a set of Lithium batteries.

Video Mode

If this camera were to take 15 day and 15 night videos every 24 hours, it would last 3.8 months in the field on a set of Lithium batteries.

*Does not work well with rechargeable batteries.

Detection Circuit: 93/100

Picture Trigger & Recovery Speed: 0.01 s. | 0.6 s.

Video Trigger & Recovery Speed: 0.4 s. | 0.6 s.

Detection Range & Angle: 90 ft. @ 53.1° detection angle (40.3° field of view)

The HP4 is notably fast in every category of detection speed. The trigger speed is insane and the recovery times aren't far behind. There is no question the HP4 is the fastest trail camera we have ever tested to date.

The detection range is very solid but the detection angle is 13° wider than the field of view. We would expect false triggers based on the discrepancy between the detection angle and the lens field of view.

Quality of Design: 90/100

Dimensions: 5.5" x 4.25" x 3"

Battery Type: 8 AA (we recommend lithium)

External Battery Jack: 12-volt external battery jack

Case Design

The case design of the Spec Ops HP4 is exceptional and the camera feels sturdy and well-built. The strap and python cable are threaded through a steel bracket affixed to the case. Most manufacturers use plastic. The HP4 has a threaded slot on the bottom for a Slate River Mount and the battery compartment and SD card slot are both easily accessible.

The battery tray is tough to get out initially. However, after removing it several times it loosens up for future operation.

Temperatures recorded on the HP4's data strip are rarely accurate and can deviate by a significant margin.

In general, this is an outstanding case design.

Camera Setup

The Spec Ops HP4 has a 2" internal viewer for picture playback, live preview, and settings adjustments. The buttons respond quickly and the HP4 is very easy to program.

The Spec Ops HP4 has nearly every programming option imaginable and accepts SD cards up to 512 Gigabytes.


The only criticism we have with the HP4 (and most other Browning trail cameras) is the failure to accurately record the temperature on each photo.

Keep in mind, our 2-year warranty program is your free insurance program in case something goes wrong with a camera you purchase from us. This warranty protects you from any manufacturing defect the camera might experience for two years.

Since 2005, our mission has to been to provide consumers with unbeatable value, advice you can trust, and customer service that exceeds expectations. There are plenty of places you can choose to do business with, if we are lucky enough to earn your support, we promise to give you our undivided attention. Trailcampro has grown each year not only by relying on your happiness but on the assumption that if we blow you away with customer service, you will brag about us to your friends (have you seen our referral/reward program?).

As always, if you have additional questions, feel free to call, email or chat with us. We look forward to helping you find your next trail camera!

Enjoy our reviews? Please consider purchasing your next trail camera from us.

FAQ's: Trail Camera

Q: Will this trail camera trigger on small animals (birds, rodents, etc.)?

A: Trail cameras detect on a combination of heat and movement, so, yes, small mammals will trigger the camera. However, if you are going after smaller warm-blooded mammals, we recommend getting the camera closer to your target. For best performance, place the camera in an area that would enable picture detection from 3 - 20 ft.

Q: Can animals see the infrared flash on this camera?

A: This is somewhat controversial. Humans can't see the flash as the nanometer spectrum is above what the human eye can detect. It's also much harder for an animal to see, but that could depend on the species of animal as different species see in different light spectrums.

Q: Where can I purchase this camera?

A: From us! We hope to woo you with our incredible charm, two-year warranty, 90-day returns, free continental U.S. shipping, and technical expertise.

Seriously, though, we know you have plenty of options of where to spend your hard-earned money. The internet can be the wild, wild, west of too-good-to-be-true deals. If you choose to do business with us, we will go out of our way to make sure you are happy with the camera you select and the service we provide you.

We are passionate about testing and reviewing trail cameras, but most importantly, we are passionate about treating our customers the right way. We do things differently from what you have come to expect from other internet retailers and we hope you give us the opportunity to prove that to you.

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