In this complete comparison review, we’ll dive into the key features and performance of the GoPro 12 and DJI Action 4 action cameras. Both cameras have their strengths and weaknesses, making it essential to understand their differences before making a decision.
- Build Quality and Design
- Thermal Performance
- Time-Lapse Options
- Point of View Shots
- Dynamic Range
- Low-Light Performance
- Resolution and Slow Motion
- Menu and User Experience
- Battery Life
Build Quality and Design
- The GoPro 12 and DJI Action 4 both feature solid build quality.
- The GoPro 12 introduces a new speckled blue finish, giving it a unique and appealing look.
- The GoPro 12 has a tripod screw at the bottom, making it easier to mount on tripods and other accessories.
- DJI Action 4 is slightly smaller and has more accessible doors, giving it a slight edge in design.
Verdict: Both cameras are well-built, but DJI Action 4 wins in design and ease of use.
- Testing in a controlled environment showed that the DJI Action 4 outperformed both GoPro 11 and 12 in terms of overheating, lasting the longest.
- Real-world scenarios might yield different results, as environmental factors can influence thermal performance.
Verdict: DJI Action 4 excels in thermal performance in controlled conditions, but real-world usage may vary.
- GoPro 12 offers both stabilized Time Warp and traditional time-lapse modes.
- DJI Action 4 supports only unstabilized time-lapse, which may be preferred in certain situations.
- GoPro 12 allows for up to 8×7 aspect ratios, providing more versatility in post-production.
- The Max Lens 2 for GoPro 12 widens the field of view but lacks an unstabilized time-lapse option.
Verdict: GoPro 12 wins the time-lapse category due to more options and versatility.
Point of View Shots
- Both GoPro 11 and 12 offer point-of-view shooting.
- Using log profiles and HDR, GoPro cameras can provide better dynamic range.
- The Max Lens Mod 2 for GoPro 12 offers a wider field of view and up to 4K 60p recording.
- DJI Action 4 performs similarly for point-of-view shots but lacks a comparable lens mod.
Verdict: GoPro 12 has an edge for point-of-view shooting, especially with the Max Lens Mod 2.
- GoPro 12 consistently maintains better dynamic range in various scenarios.
- DJI Action 4 performs well in shadows due to its larger sensor.
- Outdoor shooting favors GoPro 12’s extended dynamic range.
- GP log, a flat color profile, enhances GoPro 12’s dynamic range.
Verdict: GoPro 12 excels in dynamic range, especially with GP log, but DJI Action 4 performs well in shadow detail.
- DJI Action 4 surpasses GoPro 12 in low-light scenarios.
- GoPro 12’s footage tends to be noisier in low-light conditions.
- For underwater shooting, DJI Action 4 maintains better white balance and offers a deeper depth rating.
Verdict: DJI Action 4 is superior in low-light conditions and underwater shooting.
Resolution and Slow Motion
- GoPro 12 boasts 5.3K resolution, but visual quality differences are minimal compared to the 4K of DJI Action 4.
- GoPro 12 provides more flexibility in aspect ratios and higher frame rates for slow motion.
- DJI Action 4 lacks 2.7K 120fps with a 4:3 aspect ratio, which GoPro 12 offers.
Verdict: GoPro 12 offers more versatility in resolution and slow-motion options.
Menu and User Experience
- GoPro 12 introduces an updated menu layout, which is more intuitive and user-friendly.
- DJI Action 4’s menu system is considered superior, offering easier navigation and settings adjustments.
- GoPro 12 has some quirks, like limited manual shutter speed options.
Verdict: DJI Action 4 wins in menu design and ease of use.
- GoPro 12 offers improved battery life compared to GoPro 11.
- DJI Action 4 has excellent battery life.
- In controlled tests, GoPro 12 lasted longer than GoPro 11 but shorter than DJI Action 4.
Verdict: Both cameras offer good battery life, but the DJI Action 4 has a slight advantage.
Comparison table of GoPro 12 vs. DJI Action 4:
|Feature||GoPro Hero 12||DJI Action 4|
|Design & Build Quality||Similar to Hero 11 with new blue finish and tripod screw.||Superior build quality and design.|
|Point of View Shots||Similar performance for POV shots with dynamic range improvements in Hero 12 using log profile and HDR.||Max Lens Mod 2 offers wider field of view (up to 4K 60fps) for enhanced POV shots.|
|Low-Light Performance||Improved low-light performance in Action 4 due to a larger sensor.||Better low-light performance in Action 4 due to a larger sensor.|
|HDR Feature||HDR feature introduced in Hero 12, polarizing effect on video quality.||Not mentioned, but likely similar to Hero 11.|
|Underwater Capabilities||No specific benefits mentioned for Hero 12 over Hero 11.||Not mentioned, but likely similar to Hero 11.|
|Resolution||Hero 12 advertises 5.3K, but practical difference not noticeable in comparison to Action 4’s 4K.||Action 4 offers 4K resolution.|
|Menu System||Improved menu layout in Hero 12, more intuitive.||Superior menu system in Action 4, easier to navigate.|
|Battery Life||Hero 12 offers improved battery life compared to Hero 11.||Action 4 has the longest battery life in the tested setting.|
|Performance Stability||No issues with Hero 12 in terms of freezing or bugs.||Not mentioned but likely stable.|
|Overall Verdict||Worthy upgrade from Hero 10 or earlier models, improvements in battery life, menus, and dynamic range.||Comparable to Hero 12, difficult to pick a clear favorite due to individual preferences and features.|
Comparison table for DJI Osmo Action 4, DJI Osmo Action 3, GoPro HERO11 Black, and GoPro HERO12 Black:
|Feature||DJI Osmo Action 4||DJI Osmo Action 3||GoPro HERO11 Black||GoPro HERO12 Black|
|Dimensions (L×W×H)||70.5×44.2×32.8 mm||70.5×44.2×32.8 mm||71.8 W x 50.8 H x 33.6 D (mm)||71.8 W x 50.8 H x 33.6 D (mm)|
|Weight||145 g||145 g||154g(with battery)||154g (with battery), 121g (without battery)|
|Waterproof||18 m (with Waterproof Case), 60 m (with Waterproof Case)||16 m (with Waterproof Case), 60 m (with Waterproof Case)||10m (without Protective Housing), 60m (with Protective Housing)||10m (without Protective Housing), 60m (with Protective Housing)|
|Number of Microphones||3||3||3||3|
|Touchscreens||Front Screen: 1.4-inch 323 ppi 320×320 Rear Screen: 2.25-inch 326 ppi 360×640 Front/Rear Screen Brightness: 750±50 cd/m²||Front Screen: 1.4-inch 326 ppi 320×320 Rear Screen: 2.25-inch 326 ppi 360×640 Front/Rear Screen Brightness: 750±50 cd/m²||Rear: 2.27″ Touch Display Front: 1.4″ Color Display||Rear: 2.27″ Touch Display Front: 1.4″ Color Display|
|Supported SD Cards||microSD (up to 512 GB)||microSD (up to 256 GB)||1 microSD™ with at least V30 or higher UHS-3 rating||1 microSD™ with at least V30 or higher UHS-3 rating|
|Recommended microSD Cards||Various models listed||Various models listed||Compatible upto UHS-3 and 2TB Size||Compatible upto UHS-3 and 2TB Size|
|Camera Sensor||1/1.3-inch CMOS||1/1.7-inch CMOS||1/1.9-inch CMOS||1/1.9-inch CMOS|
|Lens||FOV: 155°, Aperture: f/2.8||FOV: 155°, Aperture: f/2.8||FOV: 156° in 8:7 aspect ratio||FOV: 156° in 8:7 aspect ratio|
|ISO Range||Photo: 100-12800, Video: 100-12800||Photo: 100-12800, Video: 100-12800||100-6400 (Video)||100-6400 (Video)|
|Electronic Shutter Speed||Photo: 1/8000-30 s, Video: 1/8000 s to the limit of frames per second||Photo: 1/8000-30 s, Video: 1/8000 s to the limit of frames per second||Photo: 1/8000-30 s, Video: 1/8000 s to the limit of frames per second||Photo: 1/8000-30 s, Video: 1/8000 s to the limit of frames per second|
|Max Photo Resolution||3648×2736||4000×3000||27.13MP from (8:7) 5.3K Video||27.13MP (5568×4872)|
|Zoom||Digital Zoom Photo: 4× Video: Max 2× Slow Motion/Timelapse: Not available||Digital Zoom Photo: 4x Video: 2x (> 60fps), 3x (≤ 60fps, HorizonSteady On), 4x (≤ 60fps, HorizonSteady Off) Slow Motion/Timelapse: Not available||2x (1080) 1.4x (2.7K+)||Slo-Mo 8x – 2.7K; 1080p 4x – 4K 2x – 5.3K|
|Still Photography Modes||Single: Approx. 10 MP Countdown: Off/0.5/1/2/3/5/10 s||Single: 12 MP Countdown: Off/0.5/1/2/3/5/10 s||Single Photo RAW Photo HDR Photo Burst Photo LiveBurst PowerPano Night Photo||Single Photo RAW Photo HDR Photo Burst Photo LiveBurst PowerPano Night Photo|
|Standard Recording||Various resolutions and frame rates||Various resolutions and frame rates||Various resolutions and frame rates||Various resolutions and frame rates|
|Slow Motion||Various resolutions and frame rates||Various resolutions and frame rates||8x – 2.7K; 1080p 4x – 4K 2x – 5.3K||8x – 2.7K; 1080p 4x – 4K 2x – 5.3K|
|Hyperlapse||4K/2.7K/1080p: Auto/×2/×5/×10/×15/×30||4K/2.7K/1080p: Auto/×2/×5/×10/×15/×30||TimeWarp 3.0 (up to 5.3K)||Yes|
|Timelapse||4K/2.7K/1080p@30fps||4K/2.7K/1080p@30fps||TimeWarp 3.0 (up to 5.3K)||Yes|
|Stabilization||EIS: RockSteady 3.0 RockSteady 3.0+ HorizonBalancing HorizonSteady||EIS : RockSteady 3.0 RockSteady+ HorizonBalancing HorizonSteady||HyperSmooth 4.0 HyperSmooth 4.0+||HyperSmooth 5.0 HorizonSteady|
|Audio||Not specified||Not specified||3-Mic Processing (Advanced Wind-Noise Reduction)||3-Mic Processing (Advanced Wind-Noise Reduction)|
|Battery||LiPo 1100mAh||LiPo 1100mAh||1,72o mAh Li-ion Battery||1,72o mAh Li-ion Battery|
|Battery Life (Approx.)||Up to 80 minutes (4K 120fps)||Up to 80 minutes (4K 120fps)||61 min in 5.3K @60 FPS||70 minutes at 5.3K@60FPS|
|Charging Time (Approx.)||70 minutes (15°C to 40°C)||70 minutes (15°C to 40°C)||2-3 hours||2-3 hours|
|Price (In 2023)||$399||$329||$349||$399|
In the ongoing battle between action cameras, the DJI Osmo Action 4 has won me over. While GoPro has its merits, I found the DJI Action 4 to be a superior choice for my needs than GoPro Hero 12. Its innovative magnetic mounting system, cold weather resilience, extended battery life, and excellent audio quality have made it a game-changer for my adventures.
Ultimately, the choice between action cameras depends on your specific requirements and preferences. However, for me, making the switch to DJI has been a positive move, and I have no regrets. I hope my experience and insights have been helpful in your quest for the perfect action camera. Whether you choose DJI, GoPro, or another brand, may your adventures be filled with unforgettable moments captured on film.