With a new battery promising up to 160 minutes of recording, a native vertical shooting mode, and dual touchscreens, the new DJI Osmo Action 3 is DJI’s most powerful action cam yet.
It’s three years since DJI first took a holiday from drone tech and released the original Osmo Action, and three years of user testing and feedback out in the wild has led the company down a couple of interesting development paths with the Osmo Action 3, which releases today.
Top of the heap is the battery. The swappable 1770mAh Extreme Battery in the heart of the unit lets the camera record for up to 160 minutes under lab conditions. And, yes, while most people will not be using it at a precise 25°C to record 1080p/30fps video with EIS disabled and the screens off, it at least gives an indication of the sort of length you will be able to aspire to under more typical conditions.
It also handles temperatures as low as -20°C and, in a claimed first for action cameras, has native fast charging support. This will take it from from 0-80% charge in as little as 18 minutes, and 0-100% in 50 minutes, which is going to be fairly useful for a lot of people.
Another new feature which will achieve the same sort of popularity is a pivot (ha! - you see what we did there?) to a vertical-first way to capture. The camera has a built-in mounting system that quickly clips the camera to handlebars, helmets, and more, optimizing the quick-release system first seen in Action 2 by adding notches for a locked-in, impact-resistant hold. And it’s here where a new Horizontal-Vertical Protective Frame brings this quick-mounting technology into a vertical orientation, making it perfect for social content.
The Osmo Action 3 is, at heart, a 1/1.7-inch imaging system that shoots in 4K/120fps, provides a 155° super-wide FOV, and films smooth footage with an impressive EIS suite. Improved heat management system enables continuous 4K/60fps recording until the battery runs out of power. D-Cinelike Color Mode is available in video, slow-motion, and timelapse modes for those looking for more room to edit in post production. And for those willing to dive deeper (which is DJI’s joke, not ours) it is waterproof at depths of up to 16 meters without needing any additional housing.
It has three distinct electronic image stabilization options:
RockSteady 3.0 eliminates camera shake in all directions. It works up to 4K/120fps, providing a stable and immersive first-person perspective. DJI bills this as the ideal stabilization for sport-specific scenes such as bike riding, and on-the-go handheld filming.
HorizonSteady helps to eliminate camera shake in all directions and even horizontally corrects tilt at any angle. That means footage can remain horizontally level, even through heavy bumps and 360° rotations, creating the effect of a perfect horizon without any post, even in off-kilter pursuits like surfing.
HorizonBalancing corrects the tilt horizontally within ±45° and supports recording stable 4K/60fps videos. A perfect middle ground between RockSteady and HorizonSteady, this mode is ideal when the priority is a smooth 4K picture in a dynamic environment, such as an FPV obstacle course run.
DJI also reckons that the Osmo Action 3 is the first action camera with dual touchscreens, letting users access settings from any angle while keeping the camera in perfect position. Three-mic stereo recording reduces wind noise and boosts the audio quality of the footage. Wi-Fi Livestream supports 1080p/30fps, 720p/30fps and 480p/30fps, and pausing recording during the stream. UAC/UVC Webcam support offers high-quality video and audio for conference calls and livestreams.
Other features and editing
Here’s a quick run through of some other stuff worth mentioning.
- Shutter/Record Button & Quick Switch Button offers immediate recording and instant mode switching.
- Quick Switching Between Five Custom Modes gives access to user-created camera modes at the touch of a button.
- Multifunctional Battery Case stores three batteries and two microSD cards, intelligently fast charges three batteries, and can be used together with those batteries as a power bank to charge other devices like your smartphone.
- Voice Prompt informs users of current modes without needing to unmount the camera.
- Voice Control recognizes voice commands with a high recognition rate to control the camera when hands are busy.
- InvisiStick for Skiing recognizes and digitally hides the selfie stick in snowsport situations.
- 1.5m Drop Resistance from Corning Gorilla Glass for the touchscreens and lens cover.
- Timelapse with low-power consumption, preset for common scenarios (crowds, clouds, sunset), and dynamic timelapse video stabilization for smooth exposure and color temperature changes.
- Digital Lens shoots in Standard (Dewarp), Wide, and Ultra-Wide for all shooting modes.
- Digital Zoom of up to 4x can be adjusted while recording for better image composition.
- DJI Mic Compatibility via the Type-C port, and external mics via 3.5mm to Type-C cable.
- Loop Recording for continuous recording and overwriting according to a preset time.
And finally, Osmo Action 3 connects with the DJI Mimo smartphone app via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth for more functionality, including a live feed of the camera, various story templates, quick in-app editing, and more. In addition, DJI’s LightCut video editor app is thoroughly optimized for use with Action 3 and can automatically select clips and intelligently match them with exclusive templates to generate ready-to-share video edits.
There’s also a plethora of accessories for it, from waterproof cases to 1.5m extension rod, to various mounts and more.
Price & Availability
The camera is available today in several configurations. The Osmo Action 3 Standard Combo retails from £309 includes Osmo Action 3, one Osmo Action 3 Extreme Battery, the Osmo Action 3 Horizontal-Vertical Protective Frame, the Osmo Action 3 Quick-Release Adapter Mount, and the Osmo Flat Adhesive Base.
The Osmo Action 3 Adventure Combo retails from £399 and includes Osmo Action 3, three Osmo Action 3 Extreme Batteries, the Osmo Action 3 Horizontal-Vertical Protective Frame, two Osmo Action 3 Quick-Release Adapter Mounts, one Osmo Flat Adhesive Base, and the Osmo Action 3 Multifunctional Battery Case.