You look like you are ready for an adventure. Be it hiking, mountain biking, skiing, surfing, climbing, or just lounging at the beach, the rugged DJI Osmo Action is ready to be your companion and will capture every second of the fun. Already a well-known name in getting cameras into tough spots with its stellar drones, DJI's step into the action-cam arena almost seems too obvious. All its tech translates beautifully to the camera, making this release one of the most exciting yet, with the Osmo Action offering 4K HDR, dual color screens, and a class-leading RockSteady electronic stabilization system.
If You're Gonna Be an Action Cam, You Gotta Be Tough
Step One in creating a serious action cam: making it durable. Action cams need U.S. Postal Service levels of dedication and then some—I don't think any mail carriers are being asked to go diving, for example. The Osmo Action checks all the requisite boxes and is waterproof to 36', shockproof to withstand drops of up to 5', dustproof, and freezeproof to 14°F. You almost don't have to care about it when you go out, since it'll survive practically anything.
Sharing a form factor with many other popular action cams on the market, the Osmo Action has a key differentiator right on the front, in the form of a 1.4" full-color screen. Simpler selfies everybody! Vlogging and the aforementioned selfies are obviously going to benefit, because it makes it much easier to frame yourself up right before you start paddling out to the waves or after you finish your hike. The back of the camera is also quite serviceable, with a bright 800-nit 2.25" touchscreen with a water- and fingerprint-repellent coating. Standard controls are available via a physical power button, shutter button, and QuickSwitch button for rapid access to plenty of functions.
A new dedicated battery makes an appearance here, with a design that integrates it into the body of the Osmo Action itself, and two secure locks to make sure all the sealing stays secure. This battery is rated for up to 91 minutes of run time when recording in 4K at 30 fps with stabilization enabled. Behind another sealed door are a microSD card slot and a USB Type-C port for charging and data transmission.
All About the Video
Core to any camera's success is the image quality, and the Osmo Action is no slouch. Packing a 12MP 1/2.3" CMOS, this camera can record up to 4K at 60 fps with a bit rate of 100 Mb/s and H.264 compression. You'll have crisp, clean imagery. Lending a hand here is an f/2.8 lens with aspherical elements that keep distortion to a minimum and reduce warping effects inherent with the ultra-wide 145° field of view. An anti-reflective coating completes the lens package by reducing the impact of flare and ghosting.
DJI has long been praised for stabilization performance, especially in its Osmo range, so it would make sense that some of that tech made its way into the Osmo Action. Named RockSteady, the Electronic Image Stabilization technology works all the way up to 4K at 60 fps and is amazingly smooth, in our tests. This is gimbal-level performance via electronic stabilization and will dramatically improve your walking vlogs, action shots, and more. Another useful feature is an HDR mode at up to 4K at 30 fps. This adds an additional three stops of dynamic range to the scene for smoother gradients and the ability to capture more detail in the shadows and highlights that might be lost otherwise.
Full HD is available, as well, with super slow motion at up to 240 fps. This speed can help you slow down dramatic action and create fun videos with ease. On the other side of this, the Osmo Action has both Timelapse and Hyperlapse modes. These should be familiar to many already where time lapses are used to condense long periods of time into interesting videos and hyper lapses do the same thing but support camera movement. You can also program up to five custom modes for quickly switching between them using the QuickSwitch button. Additionally, audio is captured using dual microphones, and users can activate certain settings using Voice Control. External mics can be used, as well, via the USB Type-C port and the appropriate adapters.
Plenty of Extras
Already a well-fleshed-out action cam, the Osmo Action has plenty of other smaller features that can help you make the best videos possible. Connectivity is certainly one of them; it boasts both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth support, meaning you can connect to the DJI Mimo app on your mobile device and access camera settings, a live feed, and more. The app also offers story templates, some quick editing tools, and other features for working with the video. There is also support for numerous accessories.
The camera frame is going to be useful for mounting, and it comes with a couple of mounts so you can get started. These feature the standard action-camera mount we have been seeing for years, meaning all your existing accessories should work right away. There are obviously the standard extension rods and floating handles for simple support when working handheld, and a dedicated set of filters for further controlling the look of your footage. Extra protection is available in the form of DJI Care Refresh and Care Refresh+, something to consider if you are planning on taking the Osmo Action on some dangerous trips. For storage, Go Professional Cases has gotten in on the action with a Hard-Shell Case.
The DJI Osmo Action looks to be a solid entry for DJI in the action-cam space. Are you going to pick this up to use on your next adventure? What do you want to see it do? Sound off in the Comments section, below, with all your thoughts and visions!