Sunday, 16 October 2016

DJI OSMO steady cam review.




The DJI Osmo has graced us with it's presence for a while now, and has been a great introduction into the world of filming for amateur film makers and photographers alike. 

With the ability to film 4K footage from the X3 Camera (as used on the DJI Inspire) , along with the very stable brushless gimbals, it has given users access to some professional features you would only usually see from  broadcast quality gear, enabling budding videographers  to explore another avenue to video producing.

The Osmo goes hand in hand with anyone's film equipment. It's the perfect companion to an Inspire or Phantom, and makes easy work of those 'close to the ground'  shots, that you can't quite get from a drone without the fear of trashing it mid flight! 

As it's developed by DJI, it uses the same DJI GO app used for controlling the cameras on the DJI drones, giving you full control of your shots.  

One great feature of the app is the ability to move the camera where ever you slide your finger on the screen, which gives very precise and fluid movement, minimising the jerky feel  you can sometimes experience using the finger pad on the handset. It also boast full manual control of your shutter speeds, ISO adjustments, white balance,  and exposure. 
 
Being able to film in 4K makes the Osmo a 'semi professional' steady cam that can capture some stunning definition. It works especially well on landscape scenery making the detail of the land jump right out at you.  Of course, if you haven't got the ability to review at 4K, then you can record in 2.7K, 1080p, or 720p, all of which are broadcast quality or better.
Still pictures are an average 12.4 Megapixels, but that is still a good size considering its primary roll as a steady cam. Playing about with the manual settings can give some amazing long exposure shots, and with shutter speeds of up to 30 seconds maximum, you will be able capture all the light you need!

The handle has manual shot buttons for recording and taking photos without you having to keep going in to the app, and also boasts a trigger at the front to activate 'selfie mode' and 'normal mode'. If you hold the trigger down whilst filming a subject, it will lock the gimbals positions at that point of interest, giving you more physical freedom to adjust yourself without losing the shot.

As mentioned at the beginning of this review, the  camera is the x3 model used on the DJI Inspire one, but with a few modifications such as gimbal locks on all three axis', and a camera release lock which enables you to use other DJI compatible cameras such as the X5 pro for more control and clarity.
The Osmo also has audio recording capabilities, BUT, this is the Osmo's Achilles heel. It doesn't record so well with the microphone supplied with the kit, it's tinny, grainy and lacks any depth of detail.  However, there are 3rd party microphones that work well with the Osmo, and bring the audio back up to an acceptable standard.
 
The stability of the Osmo is amazing for an 'all-in-one' handheld, as the brushless gimbal motors smooth out most movements. Any fast movements do develop some shaking on the vertical axis,  but DJI's new 'Z axis' adaptor will take care of that by eliminating any vertical shakes,  making video recording accurately still and more professional.  

DJI have now released the OSMO+ and the OSMO mobile, both of which are boasting a few more features. The OSMO+ has a zoom function of upto 8x magnification, plus the standard digital zoom you fine in your mobile device, making it a great update to the original Osmo. 

The OSMO mobile is basically an Osmo handle with a brushless stabilised phone holder, making it a sure winner amongst most snap happy phone users.  It also has the awesome 'activtrack' feature which, when used, will track the subject on the screen keeping focus and centre shot, allowing you to film more like a pro! 

Overall, the Osmo is a great choice to go for if your looking at broadening your filming horizons. It has everything you'd need and expect from a hi-level camera. 



Handle
Dimensions
2.4 x 1.9 x 6.4 inches
(61.8 x 48.2 x 161.5 mm)
Weight (including battery)
201 g
Camera
Model
X3/FC350H
Sensor
1/2.3” CMOS
Effective pixels: 12.40M
(Total pixels: 12.76M)
Lens
94° FOV 20mm
(35mm format equivalent)
f/2.8
Focus
3.5m (suitable range 1.5m to ∞)
ISO Range
100-3200 (video);100-1600 (photo)
Electronic Shutter Speed
8s 1/8000s
(up to 30s when camera is on M mode)
Max. Image Size
4000 x 3000 pixels
Still Photography Modes
Single Shot
Photo Burst Mode: 3/5/7 shots
Auto Exposure Bracketing (AEB):
3/5 bracketed frames @ 0.7EV bias
Interval
Timelapse
Auto Panorama
Selfie Panorama
Video Resolution
UHD: 4K (4096 x 2160) 24/25p
           UHD 4K (3840 x 2160) 24/25/30p
           2.7K (2704 x 1520) 24/25/30p
FHD: 1920 x 1080 24/25/30/48/50/60/100p
HD: 1280 x 720 24/25/30/48/50/60p
Video Recording Modes
Auto; Slow Motion(FOV 47°)
Max. Video Bitrate
60 Mbps
Supported File Formats
FAT32(≤32 GB);exFAT (>32 GB)
Photo Formats
JPEG, DNG
Video Formats
MP4/MOV (MPEG-4 AVC/H.264)
Supported SD Cards
Micro SD; Max. Capacity: 64 GB;
Class 10 or UHS-1
Operating Temperature
32° to 104° F (0° to 40° C)
Audio Output
48 KHz; AAC