Smartphones serve as the primary video recording device for most people and are also the equipment of choice for many social media creators. While leading phones like the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra and Apple iPhone 14 Pro have built-in video stabilization, most phones have yet to adopt the shake reduction tool. This is why gimbals in general, and the DJI Osmo Mobile 6 in particular, are so valuable. They allow you to capture ultra-smooth videos with your phone. Whether you simply want sharper footage of your kids playing in the park or need the smoothest action possible while recording high-speed stunts, the Osmo Mobile 6 offers a convenient zoom wheel, telescopic arm, and powerful software features that let you make it an essential accessory. to your video toolkit. It’s our Editors’ Choice pick for everyday gimbals, particularly for use with iPhones.
The DJI Osmo Mobile 6 makes some small but significant design tweaks compared to the DJI Osmo Mobile 5. The most obvious change is the color; the new model is dark gray, while the previous generation is off-white.
The most welcome addition is a small digital readout that lets you quickly know what mode you’re in, a feature not available on the Osmo Mobile 5. DJI also replaced the zoom slider with a combined zoom/focus wheel. It’s much nicer to use than the slider, although it’s a bit more responsive than we’d like. DJI has also refined the joystick, making it easy to dial in precise movements.
DJI transferred the record button, mode button, and rear-mounted trigger from the Osmo Mobile 5. Everything you need to control the gimbal with one hand is right at your fingertips.
Like the Osmo Mobile 5, the new model folds flat so you can store it in the included bag or other carry bag. It is not a particularly large gimbal. When fully opened, it measures 10.87 by 4.39 by 3.9 inches (HWD). When folded, it measures 7.44 by 3.32 by 1.73 inches. Tips the scales at 10.9 ounces; the magnetic phone clip adds another 1.09 ounces. Last year’s model weighed in at 10.20 ounces, so the Osmo Mobile 6 gained a bit of weight.
The Osmo Mobile 6 features a built-in extension bar that extends 8.46 inches. Its main purpose is to help put some distance between you and the camera while shooting video from the front, but it can also help add some height to your shooting angle.
A set of screw-mounted tripod legs in the box allows you to position the gimbal while holding your phone. If you’re a vlogger or content creator who shoots solo a lot, this is a useful extra.
The gimbal comes with a strong magnetic clamp that locks onto your phone. If you have an iPhone with MagSafe, you can set it so that your phone automatically launches the DJI Mimo video app (via Bluetooth) when you connect the tethered phone to the gimbal. Android users unfortunately do not get this feature. DJI also offers the DJI OM Fill Light Phone Clamp ($59), which includes a short-range fill light to help when shooting in darker scenes. Then there’s the $329 DJI Mic, which lets you record higher-quality audio wirelessly.
A rechargeable battery is built into the chassis. Relies on USB-C for charging; a cable is included in the box, but you’ll need to provide your own charging brick. DJI estimates that the Osmo Mobile 6 can stabilize a phone for 6 hours and 24 minutes under perfect conditions (ie the gimbal is balanced). Actually, we are approaching 5 hours and 30 minutes. DJI doesn’t say how long it takes to recharge the gimbal, although it took several hours to recharge the Osmo Mobile 5.
The Osmo Mobile 6 includes a handful of recording modes to help you get your shot. The default is Follow mode, which offers general stabilization. (That’s the one you’ll use most of the time.) There’s also Tilt Locked mode, which keeps the camera horizontal no matter how you move the gimbal. FPV mode assigns all three axes to follow the main subject no matter how the subject moves, while Spin Shot mode helps rotate the camera left or right for circular motion shots. The new status indicator lets you know what mode you’re in before you start recording so you don’t find yourself recording your take in the wrong mode.
Depending on the type of content you are creating, you may want to record in portrait or landscape orientation. A press of the swap button will automatically switch the phone between the two. Plus, it will stay perfectly level while flipping, so you can change orientation without recalibrating the gimbal. Now you can switch between capturing TikToks, YouTube clips, and standard video quickly and easily.
In terms of actual stabilization, the Osmo Mobile 6 is fantastic. We easily capture beautiful Steadicam-like images. Three-axis stabilization keeps even relatively aggressive movements steady with almost no shake.
The wheel on the side of the gimbal is a nice feature because it allows you to zoom in and out, or manually adjust the focus for near and far. Focus mode, in particular, opens up some creative possibilities by letting you switch focus from foreground to background and vice versa. Otherwise, these types of shots can be difficult to capture through a smartphone.
The DJI Mimo app
The Mimo app works in conjunction with capable hardware to help take results to the next level. Its features round out the experience, including an updated tracking mode called ActiveTrack 5.0, quick start (for select iPhone devices), tutorials, shot guides, and more.
ActiveTrack 5.0 is one of the main selling points of the Mimo app and the Osmo Mobile 6 itself. With it, you can select a subject in the viewfinder and the gimbal will automatically follow it to the edge of its rotation limits. Even if your subject is moving from side to side relatively quickly or moving backwards, the app and gimbal can keep them locked into the shot and in focus. The subject does not necessarily have to be a person; we were able to easily track our dog while he was wandering around.
Gesture controls, which you activate through the app interface, simplify the process of recording yourself. For example, you can set your phone to start recording when you perform a specific gesture, or start recording and tracking your movements. This feature worked perfectly in our tests.
Shot Guides, a carryover from the Osmo Mobile 5, is designed to guide you through creating different types of shots with the gimbal. However, it is more than just a tutorial; shows you how to set up shots and angles to create exactly what you have in mind. This complements the basic tutorials, which teach you everything you need to get started with the gimbal (although it’s pretty easy to use).
It should be noted that while the full-featured DJI Mimo app is available for iPhone on the iTunes App Store, the app is not available for Android devices on the Google Play Store. Instead, Android device users should download the APK file directly from the DJI website. This means that the app has not been vetted by Google; Sideloading is a less secure way to install apps on Android devices. Also, many of the features discussed above are simply not available for Android phones, and you should expect some disappointing video resolution limitations for Android devices.
Final and reassuring thoughts
Consumers or creators who want to take their smartphone videography to the next level should consider using a gimbal. The DJI Osmo Mobile 6 improves on some of the Osmo Mobile 5’s flaws, like button placement and zoom switching, while adding useful status readout and more powerful features to the DJI Mimo software, at least for iPhones.
Competing gimbals include the Zhiyun Smooth-5 ($149.99), which we haven’t tested, as well as the cut-price DJI Osmo Mobile 5 ($129.99). Options in the sub-$100 range tend to lose software support and may only feature two-axis stabilization, while gimbals that cost more than $300 tend to favor professional videographers. This leads us to award the DJI Osmo Mobile 6 as our pick for everyday gimbals.