Saturday, December 4, 2021

DJI Action 2 Review

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Dimensions1.5 by 0.9 inches
Weight2 oz
SortMotion Digicam
Sensor Decision12 MP
Sensor Measurement1/1.7″ (7.6 x 5.7mm)
Reminiscence Card Slots1
Reminiscence Card FormatmicroSDXC
Battery SortInner
Show Measurement2 inches
Contact DisplaySure
ConnectivityBluetooth, USB-C, Wi-Fi
Most Waterproof Depth33 toes
Video Decision4K
HDMI OutputNone
Flat ProfileSure

DJI is taking one other swing on the action camera market with the Motion 2 ($399 and up), its follow-up to the Osmo Action from 2019. The place the Osmo was just about a GoPro clone, the Motion 2 rethinks the shape issue. The digicam itself is sq., with a lens on the entrance and a display on the again, and makes use of highly effective magnets to connect with equipment and mounts. It is an intriguing digicam that pushes the design envelope. Still, it surely is not without some drawbacks because it places sufficient warmth to restrict use for long-form recording, and it’s straightforward to think about shedding observe of one in all its small elements. We suggest the GoPro Hero10 Black as our Editors’ Alternative winner; however, the Motion 2 is an unusual, successful variant.

Magnetic, Modular, and Sq.

Motion 2 pares the motion digicam to its very fundamentals. The principle module is a tiny sq., about 1.5 by 1.5 by 0.9 inches (HWD) in dimension and weighing around 2 ounces. It ships with a sidecar module, identical in size, that snaps onto its backside, nearly doubling its width and weight.

There are two kits accessible. The Motion 2 Energy Combo is extra inexpensive at $399 and contains an add-on Energy Module pack to increase battery life. It is set to reach shops in mid-November. The battery pack homes a USB-C charging port and a microSD card slot; however, it is not waterproof, just like the digicam itself.

The second piece of equipment, the Twin-Display Combo, is coming somewhat earlier, launching on November 2. Its add-on module additionally features a battery reserve, USB-C, and a MicroSD slot and provides a front-facing contact LCD and three extra microphones. At $519, it is a costlier proposition, however one we anticipate vloggers will go for.

You might have the choice of shopping for both battery pack or front-facing display à la carte, in case you lose one or feel the necessity to have each available. The Energy Module prices $75 by itself, and the Entrance Touchscreen Module is $169. The Motion 2 digicam itself shouldn’t be bought individually.

The innovation right here is not simply the shape issue—the GoPro Hero Session was famously sq., although its screen-free design made it much less helpful than the Motion 2. It is DJI’s magnetic mount that basically units the Motion aside. The digicam itself is magnetic and snaps proper onto ferrous objects—I attempted it with my automobile’s hood, the tins I exploit to retail espresso beans, and the facet of my fridge.DJI Action 2 Review

Now, the magnets aren’t up for motion—I used to be in a position to get the digicam to fall from the underside of my espresso containers with just a bit little bit of shaking, so I wasn’t about to take it out on the open highway on the hood of a CR-V. However, the magnets help place the digicam in attention-grabbing locations, and I like the comfort of shifting it on and off a compact tripod.

The included lanyard makes the Motion a wearable digicam, too, one you should use without a chest harness or equally convoluted contraption. I attempted it out; however, wearable lifelogging is simply one thing that I do not get. My chest-mounted footage was regular sufficient—DJI’s digital stabilization is extraordinarily efficient—however, the horizon was pretty skewed. For those who’re simply looking for a wearable digicam, you will get away with spending much less on the Insta360 Go 2, accessible for $299.

Accent Choices

There is some essential equipment included with each kit. You get two digicam mounts, one which’s suitable with GoPro mounts and a second with a regular 1/4-20 tripod thread and ball head. The magnetic lanyard, a wearable necklace for chest-mounted footage, and a USB-A-to-USB-C charging cable spherical out the included equipment.

If you’d like anything, it will value further. If you wish to take the digicam deep, it is rated to almost 200 toes (60m). The case price is $65 and, in addition, suits the entrance display or battery add-on. There is a selfie following a Bluetooth distance for $75, a floating deal for $39, and a magnetic headband for $35, amongst different choices. With GoPro and commonplace tripod mounts within the field, you can properly use the most traditional photograph, motion cam, or video mounting equipment.

I fan the macro lens accent, a $79 close-up optic that snaps properly on the entrance with magnets. It swaps the main target from the distant vary—motion cams are made to maintain everything that is various inches away from the lens in clear view. With the macro lens, the main target varies restricted to shut, so you will wish to shove the digicam proper up towards what you are attempting to {photograph} or movie. Macro pictures aren’t a choice with GoPros and different opponents, so pay attention to the Motion 2 for those who’re serious about close-up images and video.

Contact Controls

The Motion 2 has a two-button design, one on the primary digicam and one on the add-on module; however, each serves the same performance. An extended press turns the digicam on or off, and a brief faucet begins and stops movies or snaps a photograph.

That leaves the small contact display as your entire management floor. It is about 2 inches diagonal and proves to be just a bit difficult for my less-than-dexterous fingers to navigate without care. However, with correct finger placement, and DJI’s alternative to using large icons to swap settings, it isn’t dangerous.

Swipe from the left to browse media, from the fitting to various publicity settings, from the underside for decision and body fee choices, and the highest for the entire menu. The one difficult half is swapping modes. You will swipe to the left or proper to vary between photograph, video, timelapse, fast clip, and sluggish movement; however, it’s essential to be sure you begin the swipe from the center of the display.

Voice instructions work, too. The digicam responded as anticipated to “Document,” “Cease Recording,” “Take a Picture,” and “Shut Down.” The dance performance will be turned off, and it isn’t a nasty thought to take action for those utilizing it in chatty environments. I had the Motion after me whereas watching TV, and it began rolling video as Mayim Bialik launched the classes throughout a current episode of Jeopardy. GoPro additionally helps voice instructions, and the expertise is comparable—it works, however, an offhand comment can set off recording.

DJI Mimo App (Interface Screenshot)
DJI Mimo app for iOS

Complete; however management can be accessed through a smartphone app, DJI Mimo, accessible for Android and iOS gadgets. I examined the digicam with a beta model for iOS (we obtained the Motion 2 before its on-sale date for analysis; however, the official model ought to be on app shops in short order). It works as anticipated, presenting a reside feed from the Motion 2’s lens in your cellphone display. It isn’t a chic answer for handheld work—I desire the digicam’s small, however proper, contact show there—however, it is helpful for those who’ve acquired the Motion arrange on a tripod or have it mounted.

As for modes, photograph, video, and slow-motion video are self-explanatory. The fast clip is beneficial for social media, recording a 15-second bite-size video. Timelapse is a common characteristic; however, I do like that DJI has included presets for crowds, clouds, and sunsets—all present how lengthy the digicam information and the way long the ultimate film shall be. For Hyperlapse, the period for timelapse with digicam motion, you’ll be able to let the digicam determine how a lot to compress time, or choose manually from 2x, 5x, 10x, 15x, and 30x speed-up choices.

The Motion 2 additionally works as a USB webcam, so you should use it for convention calls or Livestream your vlog. The digicam prompts you to select from file switch or webcam modes if you plug it into a pc.

Battery Life and Steady Recording

The Motion 2 digicam module has its battery, but it indeed’s pretty underpowered—it is solely suitable for about 17 minutes of 4K60 file time. The front-facing show and battery pack each have their very own energy cells for prolonged file instances. The show module provides about 49 minutes, for a complete of 68 minutes of recording. The battery pack goes somewhat longer, including 66 minutes for the whole 83-minute file time.

Examine this with the GoPro Hero10 Black, which runs for about 45 minutes at its highest 5.3K60 decision, and at the same time, at 4K60, for an hour. Our GoPro checks have been finished with its commonplace battery; the corporate simply launched an extended-life blitz for the Hero10, the Enduro; however, we have not but had an opportunity to test it.

Overheating is a matter with long-form recording, particularly with small cameras. The DJI Motion 2 is not immune and struggles with warmth. Our battery life rundown checks have been finished piecemeal, just because I could not get the digicam to maintain going for longer than 15 minutes without shutting down due to warmth. We bumped into the same challenge when testing the Hero10, but it went longer (35 minutes steady) in the identical room temperature testing circumstances.

If the long-form recording is one thing you care about, there are some methods to sidestep warmth. Utilizing a decrease decision and body fee, mounting the digicam so that how it is cooled by air movement (our checks are finished on a tripod in a house atmosphere), and turning off stabilization for tripod work will assist preserve the temperature low and operating the digicam off USB-C energy as a substitute of battery is an effective trick to recollect. If prolonged recording in a motion cam-type issue is a must-have, the Hero10 Black is a greater prospect; it is getting firmware replaced this month to add video modes tuned for long-form recording.

Video and Imaging

The Motion 2’s imaging and video chops are robust. It has some actual benefits over the Hero10 Black for excessive sports activities followers and vloggers alike, notably a wider angle lens backed by a bigger format picture sensor. It additionally does some issues in another way—the Motion 2’s coloration is nearer to reversal movie than the hotter GoPro’s coloration detrimental look once we used them facet by facet beneath the sunshine simply after dawn.

Rely on the color sensor, seen as a shiny circle close to the sting of the Motion 2’s lens, for a part of that. It reads ambient mild another way than the picture sensor, for higher automated white steadiness and publicity.

In-camera coloration choices and video management are pretty much more easily restricted, even when set to Professional mode. You need to use DJI’s default coloration look, or go for D-Cinelike, a profile with decreased distinction and coloration saturation, for a matte look. Capturing flat nets uninspiring footage without some coloration work, however for those who’re well-versed in using LUTs to video, you will have some room to provide your footage a unique look.

Nonetheless, seize is offered at 12MP decision in JPG or Uncooked DNG format. The out-of-camera JPGs look simply pretty much as good because the video, with vibrant colors and dynamic vary that is ample for robust scenes with blended ranges of sunshine—sunrises are an excellent instance. The photograph beneath is correct out of Motion 2 without edits.

Digital stabilization was in its infancy when the primary Osmo Motion got here out, and DJI’s RockSteady stabilization fell simply shy of what GoPro was doing with its Hero7 HyperSmooth at the time. A couple of years have handed, and the most recent fashions are on extra even footing, with the Motion 2’s RockSteady wanting simply pretty much as good because of the Hero10 Black HyperSmooth in a side-by-side test. Each is adequate to allow you to go away your gimbal at residence.

The angle of view between the 2 is extra noticeable. We recorded footage within the distortion-corrected linear view for each camera, and the Motion 2’s idea is notably broader, displaying extra of the atmosphere in walk-and-talk footage. The identical is valid for the uncorrected view—the Motion 2 simply sees a bit differently from the world. GoPro homeowners who wish to go wider have to add $99 for the Max lens add-on.

Audio is a blended bag. The Motion 2 has a single inner microphone; it picks up my voice clearly but does not correct with wind or background noise. The front-facing LCD provides one other three mics; however, it nonetheless has points with wind noise and loud background audio—my native path is beneath the strategy path for Newark Airport, and even with the entrance LCD, loud noises drown everything else out. If you have a more excellent mic, you’ll be able to connect it by way of a USB-C adapter, or you’ll be able to anticipate DJI’s add-on microphone accent coming in December. Add-on mics are essential to get high-quality audio out of most motion cameras. The 360-degree GoPro Maxanother; however how is the exception—its mics are implausible, and it features a 16:9 recording mode.

An Excessive Value for Innovation

DJI took a while with its Osmo Motion follow-up, ready two and a half years to roll out its sequel. It used that point for a ground-up redesign, and we’ll give a credit score to the performance of the Motion 2’s modular type issue. The tiny digicam is ready to squeeze into attention-grabbing locations for inventive pictures, and the magnetic mount is handy. However, it falls shy of being game-changing—it does not take much effort to connect a mounting foot to a GoPro.

We like the broader angle of view provided by the Motion 2—its lens covers extra of the world than the Hero10 Black—and the standard of the 4K video that it captures. Stabilization is excellent, too, pretty much as good because of the competitors and eliminates the necessity for a gimbal for vlogging. You will nonetheless wish to connect a more excellent mic for pictures the place audio issues; however, that is true of practically each motion cam.

However, even with the upgrades from the Osmo Motion, the Motion 2 does not reasonably handle to oust the GoPro Hero10 Black as our Editors’ Alternative winner for motion digicam. Value is a big issue—each fashion can be found for $399; however, the GoPro offers a 5.3K60 seize, a built-in entrance LCD, and a yr’s value of cloud video storage. When configured with its front-facing LCD, the Motion 2 jumps to $519, which is lots to ask for a small video digicam, even one which’s extra progressive than iterative.


  • Tiny, go-anywhere form factor
  • Magnetic mount and snap-on accessories
  • Effective digital stabilization
  • Up to 4K120 video
  • 12MP photos
  • Waterproof to 33 feet
  • Works as a webcam


  • The front screen option pushes price high
  • Overheating is a concern
  • No card slot or charging port on the main camera module
  • The front screen and battery aren’t waterproof

Prices pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on:

Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on [relevant Amazon Site(s), as applicable] at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

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