Insta360 has established itself as a strong competitor in the world of action cameras. While GoPro once consistently pushed the boundaries of what these small devices can achieve, Insta360 is quickly becoming a frontrunner for content creators, VFX artists, and filmmakers. 

With the Insta360 GO 3 announcement, we saw how the company continues to innovate in the niche market. Weighing a mere 1.2 oz (35 g) and smaller than your thumb, the GO 3 combines portability with versatility, making it the ideal companion for creatives needing quick social media content. 

But can this tool be used by filmmakers? Or should this camera be relegated to content creators and adrenaline junkies. Let’s find out.

Portable Filmmaking

The thing we like about Insta360 cameras is how well they fit into VFX workflows for budget creatives. With the RS line, creatives can make HDRI maps for realistic lighting in their VFX scenes. But the GO camera does away with that feature to give GoPro some competition. 

The first GO camera from Insta360 was all about making the camera compact. It's one of the smallest action cams we have seen. The second iteration was all about improving image quality. 

Now the Insta360 GO 3 aim to up the ante with a solid array of features that make it a great companion tool for filmmakers and a go-to for content creators. 

At 35 g, it's smaller and lighter than the GoPro Mini unless you use it with the Action Pod, which is an accessory that nests the camera into a larger body. This enhances the camera's capabilities by adding a flip touchscreen and providing remote control and live preview of your image. 

Insta360 GO 3 Action PodDetachable camera with the Action PodCredit: Insta360

Additionally, the Action Pod’s extra battery can extend the shooting time to up to 170 minutes. While it’s magnetized to the body, a locking latch keeps it snug inside the Action Pod so you can toss it around at your leisure. But even if you disconnect the camera from the pod, the two still maintain a wireless connection, offering wireless video and control of the GO 3. 

Furthermore, the magnetic body enables mounting on any metallic surface. You can even mount it on clothes using the Magnet Pendant, while the Easy Clip and Pivot Stand allows mounting to practically any surface.

Video can be shot in MP4 with a 2.7K resolution of up to 30 fps, and frame rates can go as high as 120 fps in FHD when using Slow Motion mode. This utilizes an 11.24 mm lens (35 mm equivalent) with an f/2.2 aperture that offers a nice FOV. 

Insta360 GO 3 Feature SetA robust feature setCredit: Insta360

The inclusion of FreeFrame Video, Timelapse, TimeShift, Slow Motion, Pre-Recording, and Loop Recording video modes makes this a great option for content creators as well. 

With an IPX4 water-resistant design and IPX8 waterproofing for depths of up to 16 ft (5 m), the GO 3 works great in any environment. Combine that with advanced stabilization, and we can see this camera working for stunt sequences, underwater documentaries, and action sports, all while keeping your footage silky-smooth. 

The Beauty on the Inside

The GO 3 features extended battery life, an upgraded microphone, and enhanced voice control capabilities over the previous generation.

It also has a feature-rich app and editing ecosystem that simplifies your projects. FreeFrame Mode enables users to modify the aspect ratio of their footage after shooting, with AI-powered editing features automatically curating the best clips so you can create custom reels for social media. Creatives can shoot the full sensor and crop the footage to meet any aspect ratio standard they need without re-recording. 

Insta360 GO 3 HDRPureShot HDR mode for photosCredit: Insta360

Additionally, the GO 3 offers a wide range of creative modes, including TimeShift for hyperlapse montages and an AI-powered PureShot HDR mode for photos with enhanced dynamic range.

Is This a Tool for Filmmakers?

While the Insta360 GO 3 is a feature-packed action cam that comes alive when making social media or sports content, is this a tool filmmakers can use?

Kind of.

If you’re a creative who wants to document their workflow or create BTS footage to support your project, this is an awesome tool to have in your kit. Because of its size, it’s also great to use with FPV drones.

We see this being attached to your dedicated cinema or mirrorless camera to capture all those moments about how films are made. Social media is exploding with this type of content, and the GO 3 shines as a camera that can capture everything you're doing while staying out of your way. Potato Jet has a really awesome video on all the different ways to utilize this little camera:

But this won't be the right tool if you’re thinking of using this to film your actual projects, like stunts or action scenes. There are cameras out there with better image quality and resolution that are compact enough to fit that need. While the GO 3 has a Flat color option, the fact that you’re getting MP4 files won’t give you the oomph you need in image quality.

Insta360 GO 3 Action Camera

  • Miniature Action Camera with Action Pod
  • Up to 2.7K Video and Photos
  • Longer-Life Battery over 2 Hours
  • Updated Dual Built-In Microphones
  • Waterproof to 16', IPX4 with Action Pod
  • Up to 1080p120 Slow-Motion Video
  • Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, Voice Control 2.0
  • Time-Lapse, Time Shift, Loop Recording
  • Flow-State Image Stabilization

If you want the Insta360 GO 3 to support your work from a social media standpoint, it is now available in three storage options: 32GB, 64GB, and 128GB models.

These are priced at $379.99, $399.99, and $429.99, respectively. Each purchase includes the Action Pod and other useful accessories like the Magnet Pendant, Easy Clip, Pivot Stand, and Lens Guard.

Let us know what you think, though. Is this something you want in your kit? Sound off in the comments!