DJI OSMO Pocket – One Day Use Review

At DSLR Warehouse we pride ourselves on unbiased reviews.  This review has not been sponsored and is not influenced by anything other than our opinions.  

Is the DJI Osmo Pocket all the hype?  Or is it just hype?

When we first heard about the DJI Pockets release we were amazed.  The ability to have a 4k recording device with 3 axis stabilization this compact was and is still unheard of.  They are the first to pack this much technology in such a small and functional unit (aside from the larger DJI Osmo).  But like the subheading states, is it all the hype or is it just hype?

Size of actual DJI Pocket. Nice and compact.

One day testing – Osmo Pocket

We were fortunate enough to get our hands on a DJI Osmos Pocket from our friends at Gene’s Camera Store in South Bend Indiana.  The first thing we noticed when unboxing one was the fact that it has to be activated and registered to a cell phone.  This is so that you can utilize the DJI mobile app to access features like Activetrack, Panorama, MIMO and night shot mode.  The issue with this, for us since we were borrowing it, was that as soon as the product is linked to a device, the warranty starts.  DJI should really send vendors sample models for customers to play with.  But speaking of night shots, this camera is capable of capturing 12 megapixels photos,  which is high enough quality to blow images up to 8×10 prints with no problems.  

Open box of what comes with the unit

After the initial set up and registration, we finally got to play with the pocket.  The very first thing that intrigued us was how smooth the stabilizer was.  Maybe it was the fact we were watching play back on small 1 inch screen but I’m sure when we upload the video, the quality will be just as smooth.  We did look at the DJI Osmo Pocket official website and learned the difference between: Optical stabilization, Electronic stabilization, and Gimbal stabilization.  View video below. 

Left: Gimbal, Center: Electronic, Right: Optical

We asked ourselves what separates this unit from a GoPro Hero or buying a Osmo Mobile for our 4k phones?  We’ll the quick answer is “convenience”.  More on this below. 

Osmo Pocket vs. Osmo Mobile

As you can tell from the above illustration, the Pocket has gimbal stabilization, but so does the Osmo Mobile.  But have you ever tried recording footage with a cell phone gimbal?  We have, and the issue you get every so often is distortion from the Electronic Stabilization inside the cell phone.  For a true and smooth experience, the Pocket is much better than the Mobile.  Don’t get us wrong though, the Mobile is much less expensive and if you already have a 4k phone, then why not save a little?  Keep in mind you are using up your phones battery relatively quick as well as it’s internal storage.  You also run the risk of damaging your phone or it falling out of the bracket.  I myself have cracked a screen using the Osmo Mobile so we choose the Osmo Pocket over the Osmo Mobile.

Osmo Mobile great alternative only $119

Osmo Pocket vs. GoPro Hero 7

This is a little bit better of a competition.  GoPro has just released their own 4k camera with a LCD screen and they also have their own editing software.   The one thing GoPro will always be known for is their action cameras.  And this is where GoPro beats the Pocket.  However, if you read below, DJI has came out with a list of accessories to make it more action friendly but unless the gimbal comes off and connects to a helmet, it will never compete on that aspect.  If you are looking for an action camera, then the GoPro Hero along with their Karma Gimbal Grip or the DJI Mobile stabilizer would be the better route for you.  

GoPro Hero 7 only $399 out now!

Who’s is this camera for?

This is a tough question to answer.  We feel that they try and market this item to advanced cinematographers by offering C-log type formats but in all reality this camera is best geared for the Youtube Vloggers.  It is for the person on the go that doesn’t want to lug around all your DLSR gear and Ronin S or M stabilizers.  They even have the MIMO app that makes your video easily editable for quick and easy uploads to Facebook and Instagram.  We do think this app is amazing but we did not get much time to play with its full capability.  Because this is the first generation, they have not completely released all their options.  The good news about technology is that they do plan to release the D-like cinema and story mode in the near future.  This is something we are excited for and because it is so new, we are looking forward to seeing people make awesome b-roll and vlogs. 

Get rid of your selfie stick and gorilla pod and replace it with the Osmos Pocket

Accessories and Gadgets

They built this intended to upsell.  They are a business after all and wouldn’t be in business if they didn’t offer a great product along with great upgrades and add ons.  Below is a list of upgrade items direct from DJI website.  

  • Charging Case
  • Extension Rod
  • Wireless Module
  • Controller Wheel
  • ND Filter Set
  • Smart Phone Adapter
  • Waterproof Case
  • Hardcover
  • Accessory Mount

Our Verdict

We really love the Osmo Pocket.  It’s fun, creative, small, easy to use, and powerful. We feel this camera is best for vloggers and people making short instagram clips.  If you are looking for an action camera, we still suggest the GoPro Hero 7.  If you are looking for serious cinematography, invest in a Sony A7iii and perfect your craft.  We want to hear what you think, make sure to leave a comment below and follow us on Instagram.  

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