DJI Osmo Pocket 3 gets a major camera upgrade

Today marks the highly anticipated launch of the DJI Osmo Pocket 3, a compact and versatile handheld action camera–just in time for the holidays. 

DJI hasn’t launched a new addition to the Pocket line since October 2020, so to say this launch is highly anticipated — particularly in the world of vloggers and other social media stars — is an understatement. And perhaps you’ve even seen it yourself in the days leading up to the launch, but the internet has been flooded with guesses and leaks wondering what new improvements the Osmo Pocket 3 would hold.

The Osmo Pocket 3 likely will not disappoint. With major upgraded camera sensors, enhanced color modes, robust stabilization, and audio capabilities, it’s a versatile tool that caters to the demands of both amateur and professional content creators. 

Some key Osmo Pocket 3 specs:

  • 1-inch CMOS sensor
  • Captures 4K/120 fps UHD footage
  • D-Log M and 10-bit to capture better, more accurate colors
  • 2-inch rotatable screen to switch between horizontal and vertical shooting
  • Can charge to 80% full in just 16 minutes
  • 166-minute operating time
  • Ability to wirelessly connect up to two DJI Mic 2 transmitters

The Osmo Pocket 3 is a vlogging camera that starts at $519. We were lucky enough to get our hands on the DJI Osmo Pocket 3 a tad early. So with that, here is our full review of DJI’s latest pocket camera. 

Buy the DJI Osmo Pocket 3 now:

DJI Osmo Pocket 3

DJI Osmo Pocket 3: a huge camera sensor upgrade 

The most notable upgrade between the Pocket 2 and the new Osmo Pocket 3 is the size of the camera sensor. The DJI Osmo Pocket 3 has a remarkable 1-inch CMOS sensor, while the Pocket 2 had an image sensor of 1/1.7. 

A larger sensor captures more light and detail, resulting in higher image resolution and better image quality. This enhancement is a win for videographers, especially those who want to film in difficult lighting situations or who otherwise have little control over the lighting where you are filming. This sensor upgrade allows you to worry less and film more. 

You’ll find a 1-inch CMOS sensor on photography drones like the DJI Air 2s, so it’s impressive to find this size sensor on such a small machine. DJI continues to use its drone tech in its action camera lines (like the gimbal technology and camera sensors), which is a smart move since DJI continues to dominate the consumer drone market.

The Osmo Pocket 3 with wrist strap and handle with 1/4 thread

Other notable Osmo Pocket 3 camera features

In addition to the 1-inch CMOS sensor, DJI has made some notable upgrades to the camera. 

While the Pocket 2 can record videos at a maximum video resolution of 4K/60fps, the Osmo Pocket 3 camera can now shoot video in 4K/120fps. 

The change from 60fps to 120fps affects the overall look, smoothness, and potential for slow motion in your video. The Osmo Pocket 3 supports 4x and 8x slow-motion video shooting as well. 

If you are a creator focused on talking heads rather than scenic aerial shots, then you’ll be interested in the glowing complexion and glamor effects feature. This feature automatically fine-tunes the exposure for different skin tones. 

Keep in mind the Osmo Pocket 3 has no internal storage. But when shooting at 120 fps, know that you will generate larger video file sizes and higher storage requirements. If you need to shoot at that frame rate, realize that you’ll need to purchase a microSD card. A UHS-I speed grade 3 rating microSD card is required due to the fast read and write speeds necessary for high-resolution video data.  

Here are some of the best microSD cards for your Osmo Pocket 3:

Photo courtesy of DJI

DJI Osmo Pocket 3 microphone 

DJI continues to improve on the audio system of the pocket cameras. The Osmo Pocket 3 comes with a built-in, 3-microphone array for omnidirectional stereo recording. 

The camera wirelessly connects to the two transmitters of DJI Mic 2 without connecting the receiver, making it capable of clearly capturing audio for travel footage, live streams, and single or double-person recording.

If you purchase the Osmo Pocket 3 Creator Combo, the DJI Mic 2 comes in the combo and the two are linked together. The Creator Combo starts at $669. 

The DJI Mic 2 follows its predecessor, the DJI Mic. It’s an easy-to-use, wireless digital microphone. The Mic 2 can connect to a subject via a clip or a magnet. Both the clips and magnets kept the mic in place well. 

DJI Osmo Pocket 3 with smaller handle and tripod

DJI Osmo Pocket 3 design 

Like its predecessor, the Pocket 2, the design remains a stand-out feature. The Osmo Pocket 3 is under 8 inches long, roughly the size of an average butter knife. The gimbal camera can easily be put into any carry-on bag.

But there’s another design feature that deserves just as much praise: the modular aspect. Thanks to its modular design, there’s a detachable base plate allowing you to attach various accessories. 

You can easily add a small handle with a ¼” thread to Osmo Pocket 3 via the USB-C port. The handle’s main feature is to simply make the pocket camera more comfortable to hold. Without the addition of this piece, it was difficult to get a firm comfortable grip on the pocket camera. Especially for action shots, you’dwant this extra piece attached. 

With the Creator Combo, there’s an additional longer piece called the battery handle. Think of it as a Mophie for your Osmo. When connected to the camera, it can extend the battery life.

You can also purchase the battery handle separately for $69.

Without the battery handle, the Osmo Pocket 3 can record up to 116 minutes of 4k/60fps footage. While I am always grateful for extra battery life, I prefer holding the Osmo Pocket 3 with the smaller handle over the battery handle. 

Both handles connect to the Osmo Mini Tripod. The range of detachable add-ons gives users versatility, an important feature of a pocket camera. 

The Osmo Pocket 3 not only increased the camera sensor but also the size of the touchscreen. The screen rotates vertically and horizontally and is over 2 inches large. The larger screen not only makes viewing what you are filming easier, but navigating through the settings and modes much more seamlessly. 

This feature, along with the three-axis gimbal, was made with social media content in mind. 

You can also use the touchscreen to rotate on and off. I found this feature rather annoying as I kept accidentally turning the camera off. Luckily, though, you can disable this feature in the system settings. 

The Osmo Pocket 3 with a rotating touchscreen

DJI Osmo Pocket 3 smart features

The Osmo Pocket 3 offers three-axis mechanical stabilization. Reducing camera shake and having smoother, more stabilized footage is most likely a priority for you if you are looking to purchase a pocket camera. And it’s a major difference between the pocket camera you probably already have in your pocket (your phone).

The Osmo Pocket 3 also has ActiveTrack 6.0, which enables the camera to follow a chosen subject throughout the shot, and Smart Gimbal Mode. Smart Gimbal Mode includes face auto-detect where the camera will automatically track the face that is the closest to the center of the live view when recording. 

DJI Osmo Pocket 3 with a protective case

Osmo Pocket 3 accessories

With the launch of the DJI Osmo Pocket 3 comes a host of other accessories available for purchase, which might make for a nice gift if you can’t afford to give someone a full, roughly $500 Osmo Pocket 3, or you have (or are getting) an Osmo Pocket 3 but want to maximize the experience.

Some of the optional Osmo Pocket 3 accessories are:

Is the Osmo Pocket 3 worth it?

The increase in the camera sensor alone is probably enough reason to make the upgrade from Pocket 2 to 3. And given the time frame between releases (three years), it might be time to upgrade.  

Starting at $519, you will find cheaper alternatives in the action camera market. For example, the GoPro HERO 11 begins at $349

The GoPro HERO 11 is a solid on-the-go camera, for a much cheaper price. 

Plus, while the Osmo Pocket 3 starts at $519, the Creator Combo is $669. The Creator Combo includes two of the stand-out features (the battery handle and the DJI Mic 2).

However, the Osmo Pocket 3 has more advanced features like a larger camera sensor, better audio capabilities, and smart features.

If you plan to shoot at night, plan on recording a lot of on-the-go audio, or want to prioritize the faces of the subjects you are shooting, then the Osmo Pocket 3 is certainly worth it. 

Buy the DJI Osmo Pocket 3 now:

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