DJI OM4 review – The gimbal to buy if you want to take selfie videos?

I have been considering buying a gimbal since last year. Prior to my NZ trip last year, I briefly considered buying a gimbal, and was on the verge of ordering one. What is a gimbal, you may ask? Basically it’s a handheld device which you attach your camera/smartphone to, to reduce camera shake. If you like to take a lot of videos on the go, stabilising your camera will improve the quality of the videos. Certain angles may be easier to film as well.




I had intended to take a lot of family videos during my trip to NZ. But being just a hobbyist, would the gimbal be worth the money spent? In the end, I decided not to go ahead with the purchase, partly also because I left it too late to make the purchase.

The topic didn’t cross my mind again until recently. Obviously not being able to travel meant that I didn’t really need a gimbal. Well that was until I discovered the DJI OM4 gimbal. There are three huge reasons why I would want to buy the DJI OM4, which was launched just last month. I haven’t yet gotten my hands on one, but this is what I found out after reading their websites and looking at numerous videos done by other (celebrity) users.

This is the video that sold it for me. If Nonna can use it, so can I!

Active Track 3.0

First of all, it has Active Track 3.0. That means, instead of you having to constantly follow a subject, the gimbal automatically does it for you. If you attach to its tripod, it can swivel and angle automatically to track the subject identified! I find that pretty awesome because for the longest time, I’ve been wondering how I can film myself for example cooking or pottering around the kitchen, or even playing with my son, without having someone else hold the phone. This would be a godsend for stay at home mothers who can now finally be inside the pictures with their kids, than having to rely on reluctant husbands to take the photo or video. I did a brief google search and it seems that not many gimbals offer such technology, and probably not to this level anyway since this is the newest in the market. I could be wrong though so please do your own research as well.

Gesture Control

On the topic of being able to take selfie photos and selfie videos, the Gesture Control feature would also be very helpful. That means you can stand in front of the phone and get yourself all ready before you swipe your hand up to indicate that you want the video to start. Now the website doesn’t seem to indicate how many controls can be activated using Gesture Control. Based on the promotional videos, I can only see the person activating the start function, and that’s about it. Hopefully the Active Track function can also be activated via Gesture Control or else that would really diminish the usefulness of the Active Track function!

Now the Active Track 3.0 feature was already available on the predecessor of the DJI OM4, which is the DJI Osmo Mobile 3. So if you were interested in the Active Track feature and want a cheaper gimbal, you could get the cheaper DJI Osmo Mobile 3, which costs $159 on Lazada, vs $193 for the DJI OM4.

Magnetic Design

But the clincher as to why the DJI OM4 is better than the DJI Osmo Mobile 3 is because of the Magnetic Design. You simply snap on your smartphone to the gimbal via a magnetic phone clamp or Magnetic Ring Holder. For most gimbals in the market, whenever you attach your smartphone to the gimbal, you have to realign or recalibrate it such that your phone is smack in the centre of the gimbal. I have never owned a gimbal, so I do not know how inconvenient this may be, but I suspect it can be inconvenient, especially if you wanted to take something real quick. Subjects like kids and pets don’t really wait around while you fiddle with your gimbal, the moment would have been lost.

There are also some other nifty features that have been inbuilt to cater to the amateur videographer. Things like spin shots, slow-motion, hyperlapse and motion lapse amongst others. Good features to have for beginners, to crank those home videos one notch higher. However it’s probably possible to also use apps or editing tools to get the same effect, if you know how.

Conclusion

So, to conclude, is the DJI OM4 a good gimbal to buy? As always, it all depends on your purpose. What I can say is the features and the pricing is pretty appealing to a gimbal newbie like me, and it doesn’t hurt that it looks sleek and cool too.

Click here to go to the official DJI OM4 website.

Click here to purchase the DJI OM4 in Singapore 


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