Recently, we got to check out the DJI OM 5 smartphone stabilizer for a brief review period. As you undoubtedly know, the smartphone stabilizer has become such an important tool for content creators out there. Being able to capture stabilized video – especially while vlogging is a terrific capability. With DJI’s new OM 5 stabilizer, the company has slimmed down the stabilizer quite a bit when compared to its earlier offerings. The DJI OM 5 lightweight at 292 grams, allowing for prolonged used without getting tired arms. It’s biggest selling point, however, is its telescopic, selfie stick style extending function. The extender telescopes out to a little more than 8 inches which, while not a super long distance, does provide additional flexibility in the types of footage you can capture.
The foldout design of the OM 5 is welcome as it means that the stabilizer folds down to an even smaller size for storage. However, the actual folding process is a little “loosey goosey” for me. It doesn’t have as pronounced detents for how it should fold together as the OM 4 did. Adding to this is that the telescoping feature of the gimbal is equally unnatural, making me afraid I was going to break it a couple of times. Thanks to its small size, all of the controls are easy to reach and use.
One reason for this is that the gimbal on the end of the telescoping stick can be rotated up allowing you to capture video at higher angles than otherwise possible. Due to the design of the OM 5 it limits the amount of rotation up and down as the phone will hit the connecting arm – this whole unit rotation helps alleviate this, but does add to the overall instability. I should mention that this rotation along with the telescopic extension will allow you to get shots similar to more expensive stabilizers with that underhand carry option – very cool stuff!
Connecting your smartphone to the DJI OM 5 is accomplished by way of the magnetic clamp seen in previous models. However, I’ve never found this clamp to be all that user friendly – especially if your phone has a case on it. That being said, it did work and felt very stable when attached to the gimbal. I would love to see an iPhone MagSafe version of this in the future that does away with the clamp altogether – but, I digress.
Actually figuring out how to use the DJI OM 5 won’t yield too many surprises for those of you with past DJI stabilizer experience. As far as its controls go there is a joystick, zoom slider, mode/power button, trigger, orientation button, and shutter button – there is no passthrough USB port anymore, which is a real bummer. This means that the DJI OM 5 can no longer work as a USB battery pack for your phone, etc. Being able to charge one’s phone from the gimbal itself was a nice to have feature – but, that is one of the side effect’s of the smaller size and battery. All of the controls feel well-built and their functions make sense.
The DJI Mimo app used to control the gimbal has been updated to include some interesting enhancements – things like ActiveTrack 4.0 which helps keep the camera automatically focused on a target while moving around. This is a very cool feature and an incredible pairing with the OM 5. The app made full use of my iPhones various lens options and made shooting video very easy. Also, newbies will appreciate the ShotGuides feature which will help creators capture very interesting, stylized footage.
I actually wanted to make special mention that DJI goes above and beyond to make sure that creators know how to use the DJI OM 5. Between a number of tutorials in the app itself as well as on DJI’s YouTube channel proper, it won’t take someone long to figure out all the in’s and out’s of using the OM 5.
Overall, the DJI OM 5 might not be for everyone, but it does offer creators a lightweight, easy to carry smartphone stabilizer with some very interesting features for a reasonable price point. It is available now for $159 dollars.