DJI has long been incredibly dominant in the sky, with a smaller footprint of Osmo cameras on the land, but that might change in the action camera space with the new Osmo Action. Bringing DJI's image stabilization technology into an action camera body makes a ton of sense, and there are a few key features, including 4K60, waterproofing, and likely compatibility with GoPro accessories mounts, that make this unit worth considering.
The big obvious differentiator is that front facing camera. Obviously, this is designed for ease of framing for selfies, and that will likely drive a ton of the market. However, the real benefit here for filmmakers is being able to frame better during setup.
Generally when rigging a GoPro for part of a sequence it can be frustrating not to be able to see the frame you are creating. If you can you use wireless to monitor the image, but if you are up on a ladder or underater in a pool rigging up a camera for an action shot, that isn't necessarily convenient. The ability to see your frame as you rig, even if you are mounting the camera somewhere you can't see behind the camera body, should make this the clear choice for filmmakers who want to add an action camera to their kit for additional danger shots.
Of course, the front facing camera isn't the only thing that should make this a real option for those need an action camera in their kit. The stunning imagery available from the Mavic 2 is a good indicator of what type of images we can expect from the new Osmo action, and the image stabilization should be really second to none. DJI's drone expertise gives them more than a decades experience with the various aspects of image stabilizatoin and we're likely to see more useable footage out of this camera than in competitors.
GoPro is recovered from the Karma disaster and seems to be on good footing again, but we'll have to see how things go now that DJI is moving in on their home turf. It took a minute, but revenge is a dish best served cold. Though maybe this is less revenge then simply moving on on a market waiting for some new blood.
Available now at DJI’s website and May 22 on other retailers for a launch price of $349.
- Shockproof, tested to withstand drops from up to 5 feet
- Waterproof capable of operating at a depth of 36 feet (11 meters) without additional waterproof housing
- Tested to withstand temperatures of 14° Fahrenheit
- 2.25" rear touch screen
- 1.4" front screen
- 750 nit brightness
- Action OS Interface
- 1/2.3-inch sensor
- 12-megapixel photos
- 4K video up to 60fps at 100Mbps
- RockSteady, DJI’s Electronic Image Stabilization (EIS)
- 8x slow motion in 1080p 240fps or 4x slow motion in 1080p 120fps