DJI, which is a known player in the drone market, entered the field of action cameras in May 2019 with the Osmo Action camera. Although it’s an impressive first-generation product, does it really match up with the latest GoPro Hero 8 Black? Read on to know…

DJI Osmo Action vs GoPro Hero 8 Black: Key Specifications


The latest action cameras by two highly popular brands, Osmo Action & Hero 8 are feature-rich cams that boast of some great specs. Both of these are high-end products that can be used to take incredibly good quality shots. In fact, Osmo Action is one of the very few non-GoPro action cams that we recommend.

Have a look at the table below for the comparison of key specs of these cameras.

SpecificationsDJI Osmo ActionGoPro Hero 8 Black
Photo Modes12 MP12 MP + improved HDR
Video Modes4K 60fps
HDR 4K 60 fps
4K(4:3) 30 fps
2.7K 60 fps
HDR 2.7K 60 fps
2.7K(4:3) 30 fps
1080p 240 fps
HDR 1080p 30 fps
720p 240 fps
4K 60 fps
4K(4:3) 30 fps
2.7K 120 fps
2.7K(4:3) 60 fps
1440p 120 fps
1080p 240 fps
Video Bit Rate100mbps100mbps
Video FormatMOV, MP4 (H.264)MP4 (H.264/AVC), MP4 (H.265/HEVC)
Dimensions65×42×35 mm66.3×48.6×28.4 mm
Weight124 grams126 grams
LensReplaceable & screw-on filtersNon-replaceable
Battery Capacity1300 mAh1220 mAh
DisplayFront & RearRear
GPSNoYes

Here’s the full review of both DJI Osmo Action and GoPro Hero 8 Black with detailed information about the various pros and cons of these cameras.

 

DJI Osmo Action: Review

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What we like: One of the most striking features in the design of Osmo Action camera is its dual screens – one each at the front and the back. The front screen lets you frame yourself effortlessly making it perfect for vlogging & selfies, while the back screen delivers a crystal-clear & hyper-responsive display. The build quality is great, and the camera is solid and rugged. With RockSteady technology, an improved form of Electronic Image Stabilization (EIS), Osmo Action makes sure that no matter how heavy the action is, you’ll get a buttery stable and shake-free footage. This DJI cam has a 12 MP sensor that allows you to shoot 4K HDR videos with a wide-angle of 145°. For slow motion photography, the camera is able to capture every epic move of yours with jaw-dropping clarity and detail with its 8x slomo at 1080p/240fps. And like most of the latest GoPros, this camera is also waterproof (11m).

What we don’t like: Despite the fact that it’s a wonderfully designed camera, it has some important things missing. Firstly, there’s no underwater mode for accurate white balance, and no HDR mode for stills. Secondly, with RockSteady turned on, the screen quite noticeably lags! That may be due to additional processing for image stabilization, but it’s annoying. Another disappointment is the absence of HDMI out, which GoPro supports. Also, there’s no face tracking feature in this camera.

 

GoPro Hero 8 Black: Review

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What we like: GoPro Hero 8 features some great design changes as compared to the previous models. Its exterior is tough with the sensor and secondary display on the front, and a big touchscreen on the back. The lens is made of Gorilla Glass, which makes it twice as tough as the previous GoPro models. The Hero 8 provides an improved video quality with a 12-megapixel sensor that can record 4K footage at 60, 50, 30, 25 and 24fps. Slow-motion fans will appreciate its 2.7K at 120 and 100fps capability. The camera guarantees ultimate image/video quality with upgraded features like Hypersmooth 2.0 which captures smooth and shake-free videos while in movement. You can stabilize the video even more by enabling the Boost mode.

What we don’t like: Although now the camera lens is made of a much stronger material (as described above), the fact that it cannot be removed or replaced unlike the previous models is a sure con. The battery life too remains to be a problem, as with other GoPro models. You get only about 1.5-2 hours playtime.

 

DJI Osmo Action vs GoPro Hero 8 Black: Features Comparison


Now that you have a fair idea about DJI Osmo Action and GoPro Hero 8 Black, let’s see how these two stack up in terms of their key features.

Design

With a front LCD display, its design is where DJI Osmo Action really tries to differentiate itself from other action cameras. It helps in vlogging, capturing some great selfie shots and previewing the shot in situations where the camera is mounted in such a way that the rear screen is blocked. Its rear screen is also wider and sharper than GoPro Hero 8 Black’s. While GoPro does give you the option to add a display via GoPro’s new display and media mods, these accessories cost extra.

The design aspect where the Hero 8 has an edge over its DJI counterpart is the built-in mount. In case of Osmo Action, you need an additional accessory – the mounting frame to attach it to your desired spot.

Image Stabilization

The comparison between Hero 8’s HyperSmooth 2.0 & Osmo Action’s RockSteady is tricky! This is because both EIS technologies of the respective brands are top-notch in terms of their performance. But with the optional boost mode that gives you an exceptionally stabilized footage even in case of rapid movements, HyperSmooth 2.0 wins!

Video

Both of these cameras have the capability to shoot 4K/60 fps footage with their 12 MP sensors at a bitrate of 100 Mbps. Even their 8x slomo video recording ability is virtually identical. The only thing that differentiates them is the HDR video mode in Osmo Action camera which helps it capture more detail in the highlights and shadows of high-contrast scenes, like a sunny day at the beach. GoPro doesn’t offer HDR in videos, but has it for still shots and time-lapses.

However, GoPro Hero 8 has its own patented SuperView mode that differentiates it. It gives a unique ultra-wide perspective of shots by using the full 4:3 area of the sensor and stretching it into a 16:9 widescreen.

Time-lapse and hyperlapse

While both cameras are able to shoot great time-lapse videos, only GoPro Hero 8 has TimeWarp feature. With it, you can either automatically set the hyperlapse speed based on the detected movement of the camera, or you can manually set your preferred speed. The hyperlapse speed can also be changed in real time.

Still photography

Both Osmo Action and Hero 8 Black can shoot 12MP stills in JPEG as well as RAW format. But, only GoPro has SuperPhoto mode that automatically applies HDR processing for a great looking photo without having to bother about editing it later.

Osmo Action, on the other hand, takes a lead when it comes to extreme low-light shooting. It can hit a shutter speed of 120 seconds as against GoPro’s maximum of 30 seconds. This translates into great shots of night sky and star trails.

Interface and control

When it comes to interface and control, both cameras are incredibly easy to use and simple to set up. Like GoPro, the DJI camera also has a great touch interface that works pretty well.

Mobile app

While both the cameras have a nice and working mobile app, the GoPro app is definitely the better of the two. Everything is much clearer, easier, and faster in the GoPro app, right from changing camera settings to importing and editing the footage.

 

Verdict – Which Camera Should You Buy?


We think that DJI Osmo Action is the only true competitor of GoPro, with its wonderful specs that often match or in certain cases even do better than the latest GoPro Hero 8 like the front screen, screw-on filters and the larger rear screen. It’s also about $70 cheaper than the Hero 8. But it still has the potential of improvement. Maybe the newer generations will aim to fill that gap!

On the other hand, GoPro has been around for many years. The company has been making its cameras better through many versions till date, unlike DJI which focuses more on drones and has only recently launched its first action cam. Thus, GoPro offers a better ecosystem overall, when you look at the camera itself, its accessories, and the mobile app experience together. The TimeWarp & SuperView wide angle shots are some great features that we really like and admire in a GoPro.

For more info on some of the latest GoPro models, have a look at the links below.

  • Click here for detailed review of GoPro Hero 7 Black
  • Click here for detailed review of GoPro Hero 8 Black