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Home / Reviews / Cameras / Action cameras / DJI Osmo Pocket 3 review: vlog on

DJI Osmo Pocket 3 review: vlog on

A pocket gimbal with phone-beating footage – finally!

DJI Osmo Pocket 3 review lead

Stuff Verdict

With swivelling screen versatility for tall-video TikTokkers and wide-video YouTubers alike, and smartphone-besting footage, the DJI Osmo Pocket 3 is probably the most compact, complete vlogging camer


  • Tripod-steady hand-held footage
  • Impressive noise-handling
  • Reliable subject-tracking


  • Pricey, especially in its Creator Combo
  • Forces you to register with DJI
  • Autofocus isn’t always spot-on


Why does the Osmo Pocket 3 exist? Put simply, because smartphones are awkward to vlog on. The first two Osmo stick gimbal systems were a lot comfier to document your life with – but they weren’t perfect, either. With camera sensors that were on par with mid-range smartphones, video quality would take a hit if you used one instead of the flagship handset lurking in your pocket.

The Osmo Pocket 3 shakes things up in one critical way: it has a massive 1-inch sensor, which is typically reserved for the smartphone elite and will be much better suited to low-light filming. Most 1in sensor camera phones don’t even make it to the UK – the Oppo Find X6, Vivo X90 Pro and Xiaomi 13 Ultra for example – making DJI’s latest gimbal a specced-out, mobile-beating imaging system. And that’s before you factor in the nifty new swivel screen for comfortable portrait and landscape recording, DJI’s very clever subject tracking tech, or the powerful creator combo bundle which adds wireless audio recording to proceedings.

At $519/£489, or $669/£619 for the Creator Combo pack, it’s a bit more of an investment this time around. But can you really put a price on TikTok or YouTube infamy?

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Design & build: swivel and sway

With a chunky grip, screen in the middle and a camera mounted to a three-axis gimbal at the top, the Osmo Pocket 3 follows the usual vlogging stick formula. Its midsection has a few microphones dotted about for stereo audio recording, and that central screen swivels for landscape filming. Below is a joystick and record button. The microSD card slot at the side and USB-C port at the base make for a familiar but comprehensive setup, with some nice upgrades over the Osmo Pocket 2.

Despite the moving parts, the Osmo Pocket 3 feels solid. When you turn the screen, it spring-loads into place as the gimbal head wakes up, and secures into position again when powered off so the lens is out of harm’s way. 

As a tall, 193cm person with big hands, I found the system a bit squat to use comfortably for long periods. You do get a small 1/4in thread clip to add a little extra height, but the taller battery grip that ships with the Creator Combo made it a lot easier to hold. Long bouts of shooting were much less of a claw-clasp for me personally.

Also in the box is a protective shell, lanyard, and 1/4in thread adapter. The Creator Combo then adds a wireless mic, extended battery handle, magnetic ultra-wide lens, carrying bag, and mini tripod.

Weighing 179g, the Osmo Pocket 3 is only slightly heavier than an iPhone 15. Its screen is an ample 2in touch panel with a 314×556 resolution. With a respectable 700 nits peak brightness, it’s also easy to see outdoors in all but the brightest conditions.

Camera hardware: smartphone-beating

The Osmo Pocket 3’s 1in CMOS camera sensor is bigger than the kind you’ll find on most smartphones, giving it a clear advantage for video capture. It’s geared more towards horizontal filming, being able to shoot 4K resolution at 120fps in 16:9 landscape, or 3K resolution in 9:16 portrait. For GoPro Hero11 style versatility, you can even opt for square capture for a post-shoot crop in either orientation.

The 20mm equivalent focal length is a vlogging-appropriate angle of view, and the camera can focus as near as 20cm from an object, making it versatile enough for product videos. A clip-on ultra-wide lens then expands its view to a 15mm focal length for group shots or more dynamic capture of scenes and indoor spaces. The wide, f/2.0 aperture lets close-up subjects enjoy attractive depth of field that bests most flagship smartphones.

For more advanced users, the Pocket 3 also shoots 10-bit D-Log footage (DJI’s log mode), making it well-suited to video editors.

Picture and sound quality: No noise complaints

Steady, low on noise, and relatively sharp, the Pocket 3’s footage impresses against action cameras with smaller sensors. It has no trouble beating the best smartphones once the lights drop.

Stabilisation is still the main attraction here. With no micro jitter (common with smartphone-style electronic stabilisation) or hand shake to offset, the DJI’s mechanically-stabilised footage holds up impressively well. That’s especially true when shooting in slow motion, where even small movements are amplified.

The large sensor captures impressively wide dynamic range. While backlit subjects are still a challenge, it exposes well for faces and highlight clipping is less pronounced than on other action cameras I’ve tested. At the other end, shadow noise is handled well, with the Pocket 3 pulling out discernable footage in poorly lit night scenes. Shoot in D-Log, and you can tune everything to create wonderfully, low noise and low exposure, atmospheric results.

Autofocus is excellent when backgrounds aren’t too busy. If there’s a lot of texture behind your subject, the camera can get confused, and with its nippy focus system, focus jumps abruptly at times. When it works, though, the Pocket 3’s AF system does a superb job for product videos, ideal for objects like small gadgets or food items.

As for sound quality, the Osmo Pocket 3’s built-in mics do an excellent job, picking up voices in particular very well. You won’t need to worry about external audio for handheld vlogging – the sound quality is just that good. The Creator Combo and wireless mic are a must for any distance shooting, though.

16:9 still snaps are saved at a modest 9.4MP, or 16MP almost square panoramas. It’s strange there’s no option for 4:3 aspect ratio snaps at 12MP. DJI’s computational photography can’t rival top-tier smartphones, with artifacts visible in darker shadows, but it streaks ahead of any mid-range handset.

Smarts and battery life: five-in-one

The Osmo Pocket 3 is properly multi-functional. On a tripod it’s a makeshift camera crew that follows you around; plugged into a PC it becomes a top-notch webcam; or hold it and talk for a serious vlogging and live streaming tool, with the camera easily flipped around to capture what you see in front of you.

I typically got around two hours of recording per charge, which is a great effort for any gimbal-stabilised camera. The internal battery also recharges at a rapid pace, as long as you have a PD charger that can supply a steady 65W. DJI doesn’t bundle one in the box.

I did find a couple of small irks. DJI’s Mimo companion app isn’t available through the Google Play Store, so has to be sideloaded onto your Android smartphone. That’s not ideal for security. You also need to register through the app to be able to use the camera at all, which seems wholly unnecessary.

Other than those niggles, we found the DJI Osmo Pocket 3 to be a superlative system with no direct rival.

DJI Osmo Pocket 3 verdict

DJI Osmo Pocket 3 review with phone

It took three generations, but the Osmo Pocket now delivers the video quality to best any footage shot on a top-tier smartphone. This is a properly versatile vlogging system that copes astonishingly well in low light and has excellent audio to match the clean visuals.

OK, the Osmo Pocket 3 is a lot pricier than its predecessor – but if you need stable video in mixed lighting environments, this is the most compact, capable option around.

Stuff Says…

Score: 4/5

A superlative compact vlogging system with no direct rival as far as video quality and pocketability are concerned.


Tripod-steady hand-held footage

Impressive noise-handling

Reliable subject-tracking


Pricey, especially in its Creator Combo

Forces you to register with DJI

Autofocus isn’t always spot-on

DJI Osmo Pocket 3 technical specifications

Sensor1in CMOS
Lens20mm, f/2.0
Video resolutions4K/120fps (slow-mo), 4K/60fps (standard)
StoragemicroSD (512GB max)
Dimensions140x42x34mm, 179g
Profile image of Basil Kronfli Basil Kronfli Stuff contributor

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