First look: DJI Osmo 4K stabilized camera with iPhone connectivity & control

Posted:
in iPhone edited November 2015
DJI has begun shipping its anticipated 4K stabilized camera dubbed Osmo, featuring a three-axis stabilizer and dedicated iPhone clamp, allowing for super-smooth high-resolution footage in a compact and convenient package. AppleInsider offers an exclusive first look at the new device.




The Osmo really makes a great first impression as a premium, high-end device. It comes in a really great zip-up protective case that remains compact and will make it easy to take the Osmo with you on the go.

The handle itself is metal with a rubberized grip that feels fantastic in the hand.




On the left side is a fold-out iPhone clamp with a very clever design. It, too, is metal, and extends outward with swiveling pieces that securely hang onto the corners of the iPhone. We tested it with our iPhone 6 and had no worries that the handset was going to fall out of the clamp with use.

Before firing up the Osmo, you'll want to unlock all three of the axis swivels up top, which is done easily by just turning each of them. After that, power on the Osmo and it springs to life.




The Osmo has no screen, which is where your iPhone comes in. Simply use the same DJI Go app used with the company's Phantom drones, and you can easily connect to the device and get a live stream from the Osmo camera.

The camera is also part of the company's Xenmuse lineup of swappable lenses, so if you have a higher-end DJI Inspire drone, then you'll have a great set of options when shooting.




In terms of buttons, the Osmo has a trigger on the front for locking the camera to focus on a fixed point while moving. There's also a very nice flat joystick on the back of the unit, which can be easily pressed with your thumb, for gently rotating and panning the camera.

Priced at $649.00, the DJI Osmo offers a convenient and ultraportable all-in-one solution for professionals and "prosumer" videographers. It comes with a standard 4K lens with a 1/2.3-inch sensor and a 94-degree field-of-view lens.




The Osmo also works with optional accessories like a tripod, a bike mount, or an extension arm. Other accessories include a universal mount for external microphones or an LED light, and an arm that allows two accessories to be mounted to the Osmo at the same time.

We'll have much more on the DJI Osmo, including a full review, in the coming weeks.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 22
    dacloodacloo Posts: 890member
    "Hi. This is an advertisement. We don't have anything to tell about this product. Labeling the ad 'first look' will allow us to remind you of this product during the upcoming weeks, revealing information you can already find on websites specialized in this gear. But it's an ad so we don't care."
  • Reply 2 of 22
    gqbgqb Posts: 1,934member
    It's taken 7 years, but someone has finally done a camera the way I always thought made the most sense. Build great lenses and mechanics and let the iPhone be the display and brains.
  • Reply 3 of 22
    gqbgqb Posts: 1,934member
    Now if someone would just make this for still photography, allowing for interchangeable lenses. I think Sony kinda made one, but it connected with wifi... Horrible solution.
  • Reply 4 of 22

    Not sure how much better the video on their website is than just using the iPhone itself.

     

    Also...using slow motion shots to advertise a steadicam device...brilliant!

  • Reply 5 of 22

    If Roger Patterson had this, he could get a clean, steady, 4K shot of his actor in a bigfoot costume while dismounting his horse. ;)

  • Reply 6 of 22
    rob53rob53 Posts: 3,010member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by GQB View Post



    Now if someone would just make this for still photography, allowing for interchangeable lenses. I think Sony kinda made my day me, but it connected with wifi... Horrible solution.



    It looks like the DJI camera also uses WiFi for it's iOS and Android connection. I was hoping for a Lightning connection.

  • Reply 7 of 22
    anomeanome Posts: 1,482member
    If Roger Patterson had this, he could get a clean, steady, 4K shot of his actor in a bigfoot costume while dismounting his horse. ;)
    Yeah, but I don't think the film would be as "convincing" if you could see clearly it was a guy in a suit. Poor resolution and shaky camera work are why people still think it's real.
  • Reply 8 of 22
    melikey wrote: »
    Not sure how much better the video on their website is than just using the iPhone itself.

    I'm guessing the sensor on the Osmo is larger than the sensor in the iPhone. So that might make better images along with the larger lens elements. I haven't seen a review of the image quality of the Osmo. (but there are plenty of walk-around tests!)

    But if you're happy with the video quality of the iPhone... you can get a 3-axis smartphone gimbal for about half the price of the Osmo.

    400

    melikey wrote: »
    Also...using slow motion shots to advertise a steadicam device...brilliant!

    Bumpy jittery slow-motion video is just as bad as bumpy jittery regular-motion video.

    It used to be that you'd use slow-motion as a technique to cover up or rescue a shot.

    But people are now shooting slow-motion on purpose... thanks to high frame-rates in cameras. So of course you want it to be steady and smooth. A level horizon and smooth pans and tilts are just as important in slow-motion.
  • Reply 9 of 22
    gqbgqb Posts: 1,934member
    rob53 wrote: »

    It looks like the DJI camera also uses WiFi for it's iOS and Android connection. I was hoping for a Lightning connection.

    Arrrgh!
  • Reply 10 of 22
    Nice to see the Osmo featured here :)

    DJI is really trying hard to become the Apple of Drones & Quadcopters. I like the Osmo, but the fan is a little noisy, with an external mic that's a non-issue though.

    Check out a detailed Unboxing @
  • Reply 11 of 22
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by GQB View Post



    Now if someone would just make this for still photography, allowing for interchangeable lenses. I think Sony kinda made one, but it connected with wifi... Horrible solution.



    yes - wifi should have been there when you needed it - should have the option of lightning connection.

  • Reply 12 of 22

    You are exactly right.  The Osmo is not solving a problem that aspiring movie directors currnetly have.  For half the price you can get a gimbal that uses your phone camera that would do 90 percent of what the Osmo can do for high school kids shooting beginning videos. At the high end for serious professionals, you can kit out the Osmo with the X5R camera but at $2,100 for the camera and another $650 for the gimbal, you much better off by a large factor to buy Ronin M with a Panasonic  GH4 for about the same price.  Drop the gimal price by $200 and the X5R by about $800 and then there begins to make some sense to what the Osmo can do.  At the current price, I'm not sure who this will apeal to.

  • Reply 13 of 22
    misamisa Posts: 827member
    gqb wrote: »
    It's taken 7 years, but someone has finally done a camera the way I always thought made the most sense. Build great lenses and mechanics and let the iPhone be the display and brains.

    Normally I'd agree with this except that the Camera isn't a 4K CCD (which would probably cost 2500$), nor is it possible to actually get uncompressed video this way. I don't care if the iPhone and whatever it connects to is capable of doing 1Gbps over WiFi, a 4K x 30fps camera requires 3840 × 2160 x YUV444/RGB888 which is 24Mbytes per frame, or 746Mbytes per second. I don't see 6Gbps WiFi anywhere. It's possible to fudge part of the compression with the usual YUV420 colorspace loss. But in general YUV420 is awful, and should never be used outside of broadcast.

    The entire reason Steadicams are required is because humans aren't good at holding anything. A CMOS camera is extra-awful because movement causes warping from the rolling shutter.
  • Reply 14 of 22
    Is DJI a sponsor or something? It seems to show up every other day, and in every other podcast.
  • Reply 15 of 22
    Is DJI a sponsor or something? It seems to show up every other day, and in every other podcast.

    I think some of the writers have a personal interest in drones, and B&H is a sponsor, so they can probably get their hands on DJI gear for review.
  • Reply 16 of 22
    misa wrote: »
    Normally I'd agree with this except that the Camera isn't a 4K CCD (which would probably cost 2500$), nor is it possible to actually get uncompressed video this way. I don't care if the iPhone and whatever it connects to is capable of doing 1Gbps over WiFi, a 4K x 30fps camera requires 3840 × 2160 x YUV444/RGB888 which is 24Mbytes per frame, or 746Mbytes per second. I don't see 6Gbps WiFi anywhere. It's possible to fudge part of the compression with the usual YUV420 colorspace loss. But in general YUV420 is awful, and should never be used outside of broadcast.

    The entire reason Steadicams are required is because humans aren't good at holding anything. A CMOS camera is extra-awful because movement causes warping from the rolling shutter.

    A few CMOS cameras use a global shutter, namely the Blackmagic Production 4K. And it's in the price range to compete with high-end DSLRs for small budget productions.
  • Reply 17 of 22
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post





    I think some of the writers have a personal interest in drones, and B&H is a sponsor, so they can probably get their hands on DJI gear for review.



    DJI sent us this unit for review. They are not a sponsor in any way. We are just interested in high quality, unique iOS-connected accessories. Any promotional articles/deals are clearly labeled as such, and this isn't one. More info on this policy is available in our commenting guidelines (last paragraph):

     

    http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/184333/appleinsiders-updated-commenting-guidelines

  • Reply 18 of 22

    I'm happy with my Osmo. Build quality is definitely very good. You do need an external mic. 

  • Reply 19 of 22

    It's amazing how well gimbals improve your videos. I bought a Feiyu 3 axis gimbal for my GoPro Camera. I used it on my road trip I took over the summer. I'm no videographer but most of my videos came out really good. The DJI solution works a lot better than using a GoPro on a Feiyu gimbal. Tempted to pick one of these up soon. 

  • Reply 20 of 22
    I'm happy with my Osmo. Build quality is definitely very good. You do need an external mic. 

    Which iPhone are you using with your Osmo?

    If I get an Osmo... I'm thinking about also getting an iPod Touch to use with it so I don't have to tie up my phone. And I have an iPhone 6S Plus... so it would be a much bigger device hanging off the side of the Osmo.

    How is the weight with your iPhone? Seems like it would be off-balance. I kinda wish DJI could make a small LCD screen to use with the Osmo. You might still have to set it up with your iPhone... but after that you could just use the smaller LCD screen for shooting.

    It just seems kinda clunky to have a phone sticking out perpendicular off the side of the Osmo.

    I actually like this design from another gimbal manufacturer... centered screen and you can set it down too:

    700
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