Insta360 Go 3 After the Hype: Is it a Great Tiny Action Camera?
Insta360 Go 3 is here. I was excited when the third generation was announced because Go 2 has been one of my main cameras to shoot difficult videos where normal action cameras do not fit. Moreover, the remarkable video quality was another thing that really stood out for Insta 360 Go 2. But after looking at the specs of the third generation, things are not looking bright as I cannot see any valuable upgrade.
So, is it a significantly better action camera or just an Insta 360 Go 2 on steroids?
- Bigger battery
- Action Pod; an incredible and valuable accessory
- Good video quality
- Robust Construction
- Great smartphone app
- Minor hardware upgrades
- Lack of 4K video
- Non-removable battery
Insta360 Go 3 – Price
The tiny camera lies in the expensive category, with a standalone unit costing 399$ while the combo with action pod and mounts costs 449$. It is 130$ more costly than the predecessor and costs as much as a GoPro Hero 11. Moreover, DJI action cameras are even cheaper. So, to convince us of a deal, Insta 360 Go 3 has to perform exceptionally well.
Insta360 Go 3 – Unboxing
Unboxing feels great; Chinese companies like Insta and DJI have a great emphasis on excellent package design. The coherent style is visible throughout the generation, making the brand more recognizable. The first thing we will see after opening the box is a camera attached to a magnet through cardboard. Then we have all the accessories.
Accessories include a lens guard, magnet pendant, pivot stand, easy clip, quick-release mount, and the action pod. Insta has also adopted a DJI-like mounting bracket; it is not the same size, but the working principle is the same.
Appearance and Build Quality
The changes in the camera are very minimal apart from the overall size. It is bigger and heavier because of increased battery size and other hardware. Moreover, Insta has also added an extra mic for better audio.
There is nothing much to talk about regarding the appearance. On the front, we have an interchangeable lens with a microphone. On the back, we get the connectors for the action pod and holders for the mounting bracket.
One thing that needs to be talked about is the Action Pod. It is an incredible accessory and Insta360’s attempt to make the Go 3 a GoPro-like camera. It is a camera housing with a rotatable touchscreen and controls. It can also be used as a remote to control the camera easily.
- Image Sensor: CMOS 1/2.3-inch F/2.2 Aperture
- Video Resolution: 2.7K 30FPS and 1080p 50FPS
- Battery: Go 3: 310mAh, Action Pod: 1270mAh
- Storage: Up to 128GB
- Display: 2.2-inch touchscreen on Action Pod
- Connectivity: Bluetooth BLE 5.0, Wi-Fi 5GHz
- Smartphone App: Insta360
- Weight: Go3: 35.5 grams with Action Pod 96.3 grams
Insta360 Go 3 – Features
Insta360 Go 3 does not have a lot of improvements over the previous generations, but the Action Pod accessory is incredibly useful. It turns the small camera into a proper action cam with a rotatable touchscreen. Moreover, it has a battery to charge the camera and act as a remote to control it, making it a precious accessory.
One of the reasons for this camera’s success is its versatility. It can be used anywhere you want. I have used it to capture difficult action shots by attaching it under my electric scooter or on the handles of bicycles. The last generation even helped me find a leak in my wall. The stunning, versatile mini camera has everything you need from a good camera.
Another thing that I like is all the filters of the previous generation are well-compatible with Go 3.
Insta360 Go 3 – Performance
Insta 360 has gone with the same hardware as the previous generation, so there is a minimal performance bump. They say the camera can shoot 2.7K, but we all know it’s just a software tweak. Other than that, if we look at the versatility and stability, it has improved significantly.
There are a lot more options to fine-tune the settings. Insta360 Go 3 can be tuned to capture cinematic shots and has different color modes, including FLAT. The camera also has tons of advanced options to ensure you get the quality you want from the camera.
Another thing that I want to point out is that the chest mount videos are not as stable as they used to be due to the weight of the camera, especially when you are only wearing a t-shirt. They are shakier and do not feel as good.
But overall, the video quality is excellent, not much of an improvement over the previous generation, but with better battery life and some software upgrades, Insta360 Go 3 is delivering outstanding performance. But the low light performance has not improved a bit.
The second mic is a great addition, the sound is far more clear and better. I think Insta360 has done a good job in making it an excellent vlogging camera.
Insta 360 App
Insta 360 app is an essential part of the camera. It allows you to easily control the camera while providing you with an interface to quickly prepare videos for social media.
- It does not support an external microphone
- Built-in memory, no SD card slot
- Poor low-light video
- Minor hardware upgrades
I think Insta has set the bar too high for themselves in Insta 360 Go 2. The camera was great, with excellent video quality. While Go 3 is like a maxed-out version of Go 2, it has almost the same video quality but with a bigger battery, size, and some software upgrades. We are in 2023, and having 4K is a necessity, so not having it in the camera is a bit of a bummer.
I would say if you can afford the Insta360 Go 3, then go on, but for me, Go 2 is still a more valuable version of the mini camera.
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