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Dji action 4 review camera in hand

DJI Osmo Action 4 Review: Video Quality Tested

As our resident tech and car expert, I’m very familiar with the best action cameras on the market. You’ll find me pointing my DJI Action 2 or GoPro Hero 10 Black at my face every other weekend while reviewing the latest cars in Australia. So when DJI announced the new Osmo Action 4 mere months after the release of the Osmo Action 3 it came as a bit of a surprise.

Nonetheless, as someone who’s always looking to upgrade their camera setup, it was a great chance to get hands-on with the device and see what changes they’ve made over the previous generation.

RELATED: Read my full review of the DJI Action 2 right here.

Does the DJI Osmo Action 4 take good videos?

It all starts with a larger image sensor for greater low-light video capabilities that now measures in at 1/1.3 inch (19.5mm) vs. 1/1.7 inch (14.9mm) in the DJI Action 3. Compare that to the latest GoPro Hero 11 Black (13.4mm) and you’ll understand the low-light capabilities of this action camera. To see for yourself, I’ve included some low-light footage examples below.

The aperture remains the same at a wide f/2.8 and it can still shoot 4K/120fps footage in a 16:9 aspect ratio. Fans of the Osmo Action series will be happy to see the 155° ultra-wide field of view returns.

Professionals will appreciate the 10-bit D-Log M colour mode that offers more than one billion colours and a wider dynamic range for colour grading in post-production. This is the key for those looking to up the quality of their Instagram Reels and TikToks.

Software features include 360° HorizonSteady stabilisation modes (RockSteady 3.0/3.0+) and HorizonBalancing/HorizonSteady for horizontal shots carry over from the last generation. I use these features regularly when mounting the camera to cars and I’ve always found the horizontal levelling and stabilisation to be very effective. I’ve included some examples of rough road driving above.

RELATED: DJI Mini 3 Pro Review: Best Beginner Drone?

Dji action 4 review controls
You can use either the Quick Switch button or voice prompts to go between custom modes | Image: Supplied

What recording features does the DJI Osmo Action 4 have?

The DJI Osmo Action 4 has the following recording features inbuilt:

  • SnapShot Button and Quick Switch Button: Offers immediate recording and instant mode switching by simply hitting the recording button, even when the camera is turned off.
  • Quick Switching between five custom modes: Use either the Quick Switch button or voice prompts to go between custom modes. I found this particularly handy when switching from 1080P/60FPS vertical recording to 4K/60FPS horizontal recording for social media vs. YouTube.
  • Voice Prompt: Informs you of the current mode without needing to unmount the camera. 
  • Voice Control: Control the camera with your voice.
  • Upgraded InvisiStick: This feature recognises the selfie stick and digitally hides it when you’re taking videos. You can see how this works in the videos I’ve included throughout the article.

Are the microphones on the DJI Osmo Action 4 good?

The DJI Action 4 uses three microphones that combine with clever noise reduction software to help reduce wind noise. And while it’s clear the quality has come a long way since the DJI Action 2 I tested two generations ago, if you’re serious about capturing audio I highly recommend investing in DJI’s own-brand microphones.

Why the DJI microphones over the trusted and proven RODE options? I did have distorted audio issues with my RODE Wireless GO II microphones via the USB-C to USB-C setup during my testing. I’ll note that the issues were inconsistent and I wasn’t able to replicate them, but if you’re planning on recording with RODE microphones you must check your audio after recording.

Dji action 4 review camera on selfie stick
DJI says the Action 4 battery can last up to 2.5 hours, my testing confirmed this | Image: Supplied

How long does the battery last in the DJI Action 4?

One of the features that blew me away was the battery life of the Action 4. The company claims the battery can last up to 2.5 hours and in my testing I found that to be accurate.

Fast charging capabilities are built in and the battery can charge from 0-80 per cent in 18 minutes.

Unless you’re a streamer capturing constant video on a wireless connection you’ll never need the full 2.5 hours of 1080P video recording, but it’s a good safety net when you’re filming long stints of higher resolution 4K/120fps footage. I film the majority of my in-car videos in 4K/60fps and I never used more than 40 per cent battery life in a 20-30 minute film session.

If you’re looking to push the recording times, I recommend purchasing the AUD$819 Osmo Adventure Combo that includes 3x Osmo Action Extreme Batteries and the Osmo Action Multifunctional Battery Case to charge all batteries at once. Alternatively, connect an external power supply via USB-C to keep your batteries charged.

Dji action 4 review adventure combo
The AU$819 DJI Action 4 Adventure Combo | Image: Supplied

What does the DJI Action 4 cost?

The DJI Osmo Action 4 is now available via the link below with prices starting from AUD$629 for the Osmo Action 4 Standard Combo.

This Osmo Action 4 Standard Combo comes with the following accessories:

  • Osmo Action 4
  • 1x Osmo Action Extreme Battery
  • Osmo Action Horizontal-Vertical Protective Frame
  • Osmo Action Quick-Release Adapter Mount
  • Osmo Action Curved Adhesive Base
  • Osmo Locking Screw
  • Type-C to Type-C PD Cable
  • Osmo Action Lens Hood
  • Osmo Action Anti-Slip Pad.

If you’re serious about you content creation, I highly recommend the Osmo Action 4 Adventure Combo that’s priced from AUD$819 and includes the following in the box:

  • Osmo Action 4
  • 3x Osmo Action Extreme Batteries
  • Osmo Action Horizontal-Vertical Protective Frame
  • Osmo Action Quick-Release Adapter Mount
  • Mini Osmo Action Quick-Release Adapter Mount
  • Osmo Action Curved Adhesive Base
  • 2x Osmo Locking Screws
  • Type-C to Type-C PD Cable
  • Osmo Action Multifunctional Battery Case
  • Osmo 1.5m Extension Rod
  • Osmo Action Lens Hood
  • Osmo Action Anti-Slip Pad.

What accessories can you get for the DJI Osmo Action 4?

The following accessories are available for the DJI Osmo Action 4:

  • Osmo Action Chest Strap Mount
  • Osmo Action Helmet Chin Mount
  • Osmo Action 60m Waterproof Case
  • DJI Floating Handle
  • Osmo Action Adhesive Base Kit
  • Osmo Action Bike Seat Rail Mount
  • Osmo Action Mini Handlebar Mount
  • Osmo Action 360° Wrist Strap
  • Osmo Action GPS Bluetooth Remote Controller
  • Osmo Action Mini Extension Rod
  • Osmo Backpack Strap Mount
  • Osmo Action Multifunctional Battery Case
  • Osmo Action Hanging Neck Mount
Dji action 4 review verdict
If you’re thinking of making the switch to DJI, now is the best time | Image: Supplied

Should you buy the DJI Osmo Action 4?

The DJI Action 4 is more of a facelifted Action 3 rather than a completely new camera. However, that doesn’t mean the image quality (especially in low light) isn’t some of the best I’ve ever captured on an action camera.

It doesn’t quite reach the GoPro Hero11 Black’s 5.3K/60fps footage capabilities, but it more than makes up for this with an advanced colour temperature sensor that offers natural colours in tough lighting conditions.

When shopping between the DJI Action 4 and GoPro Hero 11 Black, consider whether you’d ever capture footage in 5.3K/60fps. It’s not something you can share online in full resolution. And if you plan on only shooting 4K footage, I’d lean towards the DJI.

Beyond the technical specs and features, I prefer the way the DJI Action 4 mounts to accessories. The magnetic quick-release design means you can switch between native 9:16 video for social media and 16:9 footage for sharing on YouTube. Granted, there aren’t as many mounting accessories available, but the Action 4 has the ability to mount to GoPro accessories with the included Quick-Release Adapter Mount.

If you’re thinking of making the switch to DJI, now is the best time.

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