Hands-on with the DJI Osmo Action

DJI Osmo Action hands-on

The Osmo Action is DJI’s answer to the action cam. The 4K rugged action camera utilizes DJI’s built-in stabilization technology, offers dual screens, and like the Osmo Pocket, is simple to use.

Here is what you need to know about it.

Hardware overview

The DJI Osmo Action is built around a 1/2.3" sensor—the same found in the Osmo Pocket—and has an F2.8 three-glass aspherical lens with a 145 degree FOV. The camera also features a de-warp function so you can maintain a wide perspective of a scene but eliminate the fish-eye effect typically found in action cameras.

The device features three buttons: power, record and quickswitch (QS). The QS button on the left-hand side lets you toggle between different video modes (video, HDR, slow) and photo without digging into the menu. Holding the QS button down will toggle between the front and back screens on the camera.

The camera is charged via a USB-C port located above the microSD slot on the camera’s left-hand side.

Build

The Osmo Action is shockproof up five feet, dustproof and waterproof down to depths of 36 feet without additional waterproof housing, though users will want to ensure that the microSD and USB charging slot is locked and the screw on front lens protector is secure before submerging. It can withstand temperatures as low as 14° Fahrenheit.

The rear touch screen features coatings to keep water and fingerprints away, and the protective lens cap has an anti-reflective coating to reduce glare and an anti-fingerprint coating to keep things free of smudges.

Photo

The Osmo Action shoots 12MP Raw or JPEG photographs in 16:9 or 4:3 ratios. A self-timer countdown feature is included, and the camera can shoot in burst mode at 3/5/7 fps. Users can select either spot metering or AE lock mode. A setting called Face-Oriented Exposure ensures that faces stay bright in the scene.

The Osmo Action also allows you to set custom white balances and shoot in full manual exposure mode with an ISO range of 100-3200 and shutter speeds up to 1/8000sec. Additionally, the camera offers WiFi or Bluetooth to connect to the DJI Mimo app. Using the camera with the app gives it added functionality: live feeds, story templates and in-app editing.

Video

The camera can shoot 4K video up to 60 fps at 100Mbps with options to shoot as low as 24 fps, HDR video at 4K 30 fps and 8x slow motion in 1080p 240fps or 4x slow motion in 1080p 120fps. Built-in dual microphones and a speaker give the Osmo Action audio recording performance that is on par with that of a high-end smartphone. Adding the 3.5mm adapter accessory will allow you to connect an external mic for higher quality audio.

Timelapse mode makes it easy to turn hours of footage into seconds with just a few taps. Timelapses are recorded at 1080p and can be set at intervals of 0.5 sec up to 30 sec and durations can be set from 5m up to infinity. Custom exposure mode can be set up to 120 seconds for shooting nighttime landscapes or starscapes.

RockSteady/EIS

A new electronic image stabilization technology called RockSteady works to create footage that is smooth and stable even when shooting at 4K/60fps. The technology has a higher image cut ratio, removing blurry shots for smoother footage and analyzing raw data from the frames to increase stability by predicting the movement of the user. It is the first handheld DJI camera to incorporate the tech.

LCD screens

The Osmo Action has a 2.25" rear touchscreen that can be used to access all of the features of the camera. There is an additional front-facing LCD that can be activated by tapping the back screen twice or by holding the QS button down. The 1.4" front screen doesn’t offer touch functionality. The brightness of the LCDs mean that they can be used in direct sunlight with ease.

Performance and media

The Osmo Action uses a removable battery that is charged via USB-C in approximately 88 minutes. A fully charged battery will last 116 minutes when recording at 1080/30p or 91 minutes of 4K/30p with Rock Steady enabled. The camera uses microSD cards up to a maximum size of 256GB.

Price and availability

The Osmo Action will be available on May 22 for $349. The in-box setup includes camera, frame kit, quick release, two adhesive mounts (one flat and one curved), screw, and a USB-C charging cable. Customers can add accessories like ND filters for shooting in bright conditions, a waterproof case for deep sea shooting, the 3.5mm adapter for attaching a mic, an extension rod for unique angles, a floating handle for shooting underwater and a charging hub that can charge three batteries at once.