If you’ve ever been disappointed by shakey smartphone video, you might do well to consider a motorised gimbal to smooth out your footage. The Osmo Mobile 2 is the second smartphone gimbal from DJI, the company most well-known for its drones. If you’d like to take your smartphone video to the next level, the DJI Osmo Mobile 2 is absolutely worth considering and the best gimbal available.
DJI has retained much of the original’s design but has made a few important tweaks. In truth, there isn’t much to differentiate one smartphone gimbal from the next: these are all devices designed to be held in-hand with your smartphone clamped in place.
However, what is new here is the material from which the Osmo Mobile 2 is constructed. DJI says it’s made from high-strength modified nylon, which goes some way to explain how the device has shed a few pounds.
The Osmo Mobile 2 weighs 485g (without your smartphone of choice attached) compared to the 501g of the original. Elsewhere, many of the buttons and controls remain familiar. There’s a joystick to adjust the camera angle, a record button, and a power/mode button for swapping between the camera’s different gimbal modes. A zoom rocker is located on the side, letting you adjust the zoom of your phone’s camera.
The Osmo Mobile 2 holds your phone with a spring-loaded clamp, rather than you having to adjust a screw to lock your phone in place as was the case before.It’s able to support phones up to phablet size; but you might have to remove the case if your device is on the larger end of the spectrum.
One of the biggest changes with the Osmo Mobile 2 is the ability to orient your smartphone in portrait mode. Previously, the Osmo Mobile would only hold your phone in a more standard landscape. In the past, recording video in portrait orientation might have been frowned upon, but with the existence of Snapchat and Instagram Stories, increasingly folk wish to format their videos for these platforms.
The other change is that the Osmo Mobile 2’s battery is now fixed, rather than user-replaceable. Normally that would be bad news; being able to swap out a battery can be a life-saver. But in the Osmo Mobile 2, battery life has been bumped up to around 15 hours off a single charge.
Better yet, there’s also a USB port to which you can connect your smartphone to use the Osmo Mobile 2 as a portable battery charger.
DJI GO App
The Osmo Mobile 2 pairs with your iOS or Android phone through Bluetooth and can then be controlled using its DJI Go companion app.
The app lets you take advantage of the aforementioned moving timelapse and hyperlapse features, as well as the target follow modes. If you’re a one-person vlogger, you might find ActiveTrack particularly useful if the Osmo Mobile 2 is to remain in a fixed position but you’ll be moving around.
The zoom rocker will only work with the DJI app’s video recorder, so there are a lot of reasons to opt for the optional app. It will also let you adjust the gimbal’s settings, swapping between standard walking or sport modes, which tweak the gimbal’s stabilisation.
DJI has made the best smartphone gimbal currently available. It’s lightweight and comfortable to use, plus battery life has been boosted. There are only a few things DJI could have done to improve the Osmo Mobile 2 further. This include making the switch from landscape to portrait mode. All this is worth repeating for the last time, as the choice is clear - Osmo Mobile 2.