Let’s be clear: This may be DJI’s first foray into this actual house, however the firm has been making cameras since not less than the Phantom 2 Imaginative and prescient in 2013. Most of its drones include one inbuilt, and the Osmo sequence of handhelds has been quietly rising in recognition for just a few years. The Osmo Motion is an extension of that line for the acute sports activities crowd. Theoretically, you now have a DJI digicam for the air, land and every thing in between.
Earlier than we get into the nitty-gritty, how does the Motion stack up in opposition to the GoPro Hero 7 Black when it comes to flagship options? Each shoot as much as 4K at 60 frames per second, snap 12-megapixel pictures, include digital stabilization, supply as much as 8X sluggish movement and are waterproof (GoPro to 33 ft; DJI to 36). It is inside these options the place you will discover the important thing variations, and we’ll let you know why they matter. However at a excessive stage, these two cameras supply roughly the identical specs.
As already talked about, the Motion seems to be so much like a GoPro. It is roughly the identical form and dimension. (The Osmo is wider, however not fairly as tall.) This isn’t a coincidence, after all. Not solely does the design let that is an motion digicam, however it additionally means the Osmo might be acquainted to the very GoPro clients DJI clearly desires to lure over. It additionally means there might be a superb slice of GoPro’s accent catalog (together with some you already personal) that might be appropriate, supplied they’ve GoPro’s proprietary three-pronged connector.
The primary bodily distinction, and clearly DJI’s distinctive promoting level, is an LED show on the entrance. It is a easy resolution to a easy drawback: framing your self in shot. With a GoPro, it is trial and error. (Trace: Level the lens at your abdomen when the digicam is on a selfie stick.) However even that may go flawed, so having a display screen exhibiting your shot in actual time is smart.
That stated, the 1.4-inch second show is sufficiently small that past arm’s size it is arduous to make out what it is exhibiting. This secondary show is not a touchscreen both, so you will have to flip the digicam round or attain for the buttons to alter any settings. Curiously, the 2 shows are linked. As in, just one display screen will be energetic at a time, and the standby time for the principle show determines how lengthy the small one stays energetic. To wake the entrance display screen (as soon as it goes to sleep), you must contact the rear one. It is a counterintuitive setup that it limits the smaller show’s practicality, however it’s theoretically fixable in software program, so we are able to all the time hope for an replace.
Not like a GoPro, there is not any HDMI port on the Energetic. For those who like to attach your digicam to a TV or monitor to view your footage, you are out of luck. Just like the GoPro, it is possible for you to to attach exterior microphones through the USB-C port, and DJI informs me an official accent might be obtainable.
There are three buttons on the Motion: one for the shutter (begin/cease recording), one for energy, and a “fast set” button on the facet for switching between modes (picture, video and so forth). The battery door is definitely a part of the battery (the entire thing pops out), and the cell inside is 1,300mAh, barely bigger than GoPro’s 1,220mAh capability. (It presents about two hours fixed FHD recording to GoPro’s hour and a half-ish.) The connected door is curious, because it would not appear to supply any profit, and infrequently I noticed it hadn’t “clicked” into place correctly, which makes me nervous about it maintaining a water-resistant seal.
Because of the Motion’s further width, the LCD on the again has a 16:9 facet ratio. It feels extra spacious than what you will discover on the GoPro, however the actual perk right here is that movies and the viewfinder replenish the entire display screen — no letterbox impact like on the Hero 7. That is solely true when taking part in again one thing that was recorded in 16:9, after all, however it’s a pleasant contact nonetheless.
With their small shows, motion cameras all the time have an ungainly menu system, particularly when you’re working it with gloves or moist fingers. DJI hasn’t finished something too completely different right here. A lot of the menus are accessible by swiping in from every edge, a maneuver GoPro customers will already know effectively.
One bizarre factor I observed is that there is a large delay between the lens and the show when stabilization is switched on. It is lower than one second, however it’s noticeable. With a GoPro and the Motion facet by facet, if I transfer my hand in entrance of each cameras, the GoPro will present it in close to actual time; the DJI takes method longer. Like, the entire motion might be accomplished on the GoPro earlier than the Motion even registers.
DJI tells me it is conscious of the difficulty and that it has to do with the processing wanted for stabilization. (My assessments had stabilization energetic for each cameras.) It is extra of an annoyance than something, however when you’re counting on the viewfinder to observe an exercise, you are actually going to note it.
On a extra constructive notice, there’s an possibility to decide on which modes present up if you click on the “fast set” button. For those who do not care about hyperlapse, for instance, you’ll be able to take away it from the listing. You will nonetheless be capable of get to it through the touchscreen, however you will not need to click on previous it when utilizing the bodily button.
Just like the GoPro, the Motion has voice management, so you’ll be able to set it to document with a command. There is no wake phrase right here; merely say “begin recording” and it will start. I discovered it responsive, maybe extra so than its rival. However that lack of wake phrase and excessive sensitivity additionally meant I had just a few false triggers, the place it could begin or cease recording as a result of I stated one thing just like the command.
There are additionally fewer instructions in whole — simply 5 — however they cowl the principle controls. GoPro at the moment lists 15 instructions and will not endure from false begins, so it in the end comes down as to if you favor comfort over flexibility.
Okay, buckle up, as a result of that is the place issues are going to get somewhat dense, however it’s additionally most likely an important part for superior customers. Each cameras supply a variety of video modes and body charges. For essentially the most half they overlap, however there are some important variations price understanding.
Let’s begin with what they’ve in widespread. Each high out at 4K at 60FPS, with 30 and 24FPS additionally obtainable. You will additionally discover the 60/30/24FPS choices in widespread at most resolutions, though GoPro goes as much as 120FPS at 2.7K. For pictures, there are the same old timelapse and hyperlapse modes. Past this, issues begin to drift.
Notably, the Motion has fewer of the “unique” resolutions that GoPro has supported for years. For those who’re a fan of the 1440p, 960p or SuperView, know that you just nonetheless do have 4:three choices on the Osmo (at 4K and a couple of.7K), however that is it. So GoPro positively presents extra flexibility right here — particularly if POV video is your factor.
Conversely, DJI’s digicam has extra frame-rate choices throughout the board. DJI contains 50, 48 and 25 at most resolutions. Issues get even busier at FHD, the place you will discover 240, 200, 120 and 100 FPS within the combine.
These are specialty settings, however they match what you will discover on a Mavic drone. Presumably, the concept is that you should use the Motion on the identical mission as a Mavic and match up the FPS for consistency. That stated, it is potential to wrangle a video into a unique body fee after the very fact, however when you needed to shoot at a sure facet ratio/decision, you ideally need to do it at supply.
One other trick the Motion has that the GoPro at the moment would not is HDR video. GoPro does do some picture evaluation as you shoot (due to that customized GP1 chip), however it’s not HDR as we all know it. DJI presents HDR as a top-level menu possibility, however the trade-off is you’ll be able to’t use stabilization on the similar time. Whereas it is good that it is right here, I struggled to identify main variations between HDR and common video. In each effectively lit environments or high-contrast conditions, I wasn’t certain which clip was HDR mode once I performed them again on my laptop computer (generally I needed to document myself saying which was which). Within the slider under, although, you’ll be able to positively see that the HDR picture (left) is extra balanced the place because the non-HDR body is somewhat over uncovered, even when it is not dramatically completely different.