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iPhone vs Action Camera, Do you need an additional sports camera in 2023?

What is an action camera anyway?
An action camera, put simply is a small, compact and rugged device made to record footage of your adventure-filled activities. Now those activities may range anywhere from a simple motorbike ride all the way up to even skydiving off a plane in an exotic location it won’t matter because your action camera will have gotten you covered. A good action camera is built to endure the most brutal conditions. Coming with a waterproof build that can also absorb shocks, remain unaffected by sand or dust and even retain audio despite heavy wind noise, makes them perfect for capturing high-quality and reliable videos and photos in extreme environments.
Heading over, you may ask. Nowadays even iPhones have a lot of these features of water resistance or stable image processing. But it is important to realise how the iPhone fails miserably when the true potential of an action camera is revealed and the repercussions of putting your handset in danger of rough situations are faced.
Firstly, the most important thing for the user is, that his footage is being shot properly. What is the point of recording if you can’t completely see the actual activity? With the right action camera, not only do you get wider angles of view than a regular iPhone but you also get 360-degree action camera’s that record every – single – angle there could be. With no angle to spare, there is absolutely no way a person remains unsatisfied with their footage.
Secondly, in all fairness, action cameras are built for a single unified purpose, which is delivering good footage despite the conditions around them. This renders them with far superior image stabilisation hardware and software, compared to any other handheld device. This allows them to have clear, crisp and smooth footage even while performing super fast-paced activities.
Thirdly and most importantly, an action camera has a really long battery life to help last the entire activity or even capture time-lapse footage for pov videos and/or vlogs.
The ironic part is that the story doesn’t even end here. Action cameras have one more huge advantage when compared with your iPhone. Their compact sizes and endless lists of several accessories allow you to mount these little devils anywhere that you desire. Once mounted, you can be rest assured that no force of nature can take them away from you These action cameras can be mounted on motorcycles, helmets, surf/skateboards, or any other equipment that you may choose. This makes for them to be put in an ideal and stable place as well as gives you an opportunity to explore new perspectives that would have otherwise remained unexplored if it had been just you and your iPhone.
Which one should I get?
Now that we seem to have convinced you of the clear advantage that these devices hold over the phone you own, we can get on to picking the right one for you!
Here is a list, overview and pricing of the top 6 action cameras available in the market right now. With this article, you can be rest assured, you will have all the information you need on the best action cameras as of 2023.
GoPro HERO 11 Black
GoPro prides itself in the action camera market, and its products are well known for their high-quality video and image-capturing capabilities, as well as their high durability and versatile nature. The GoPro Hero 11, its latest flagship has everything and more to offer. It comes with the ability to shoot 5.3k video at up to 60 frames per second and 2.7k video at 270 frames per second. These insane numbers allow it to record buttery smooth slow-motion clips, perfect for any type of B-roll as well as adventure sequences and transitions. With 27MP photos and HyperSmooth 5.0 Image Stabilisation, it is perfect for jittery and unstable environments. It has front and rear LCD screens, WiFi and Bluetooth capabilities, 33’ waterproof without a housing, 8x slow motion video and a 1720 mAh rechargeable battery via type-c. The perfect companion for a rough adventure and a fun trip.

Insta360 ONE X2
Released in October 2020, this beast can record 360-degree video/photo as well as standard pocket-friendly footage. Coming with a 5.7K Dual lens, and built-in 360 Auto Stitched Capture it is perfect for when you need to capture the expressions as well as the views. It also comes with 33’ waterproof ability without a housing, a Live-view touchscreen, a 6-axis gyroscope for buttery smooth stability, capabilities of Horizon lock and a dedicated IOS/Android app to get your footage instantly

DJI Osmo Action 3
Now this monster is perfect for you if you’re in the water a lot. With water resistance to 52’ it is an absolute beast compared to its competitors. It comes with front and back colour displays, HorizonSteady, the ability to record 4k at 120 fps in UHD and RockSteady 3.0 Image Stabilisation. You can also live-stream with it, connect it to DJI microphones wirelessly and even use it as a webcam. It also comes with invisible selfie stick technology, a super wide 155-degree view, and can be controlled using voice commands. It also clocks in with fast charging which goes up to 80% in 20 minutes using a type-c cable.

GoPro Hero 10 Black
The predecessor to the GoPro Hero 11. This one is a super reliable piece of equipment as well. Coming with the trust of the company of course. It has a 23MP camera with the GP 2 chip for improved performance, and can also shoot 5.3K at 60 fps, 4K at 120 fps and 2.7K at 240 fps. Much like the Hero 11, this too has 33’ waterproof abilities without housing and also has front and rear touch displays. With a good low light performance and HyperSmooth 4.0 stabilisation technology, you can be rest assured that this camera is a safe bet for any situation you take It out in. Of course, it can also stream live and act as a webcam and comes with a 1720 mAh capacity battery just like the Hero 11.

Insta360 ONE R 4K Edition
The Insta360 ONE R is unlike any other action camera you have seen or even heard of. It is a modular action camera, which means you can literally switch out its lenses. The core module of the machine is the brain and it comes with a touchscreen live-view display which can be set in either front or rear modes as you please. The 4K edition comes with the 4K Wide Angle mod, and this one device can serve multiple purposes. Hence you can buy other modules sold separately to alter the entire output this machine delivers. This mod comes with FlowState stabilisation, a 16’ waterproof body, external mic support, support for Bluetooth remote control and a dedicated Android/IOS app with even editing features amongst others.

Sony FDR-X3000
’The Sony quality’ has been tested with time and proven in almost every piece of professional content you see in today’s era. Without a doubt, this camera is an absolute monster in image and video quality as well as colour technology. But still, it is the oldest action camera in this list, released in 2016. It supports 4k recording with good optical stabilisation and comes with a waterproof case. It has a monochrome LCD display, standard mic input, supports WiFI and also has an in-body tripod mount. If compared with the others, this one is equally reliable but it lacks the fancy features and the latest hardware provided in the current-gen cameras. Overall a safe bet, the Sony FDR-X3000 will give you reliable footage in rough climates.

Insta 360 X3
Another great device that the ‘Insta 360’ series has to offer is the X3. Like its brothers, it too can shoot in 5.7K as well as 4K. With invisible selfie stick mode and a massively upgraded screen, using this camera can be a really joyful experience. It comes with an 1800 mAh battery capacity, waterproof up to 10m, FlowState Stabilisation and 8K timelapse videos. This is the perfect camera not just for adventures but also leisurely trips to tourist spots, where you want to extract the best of what you see. It of course also comes with active HDR and you can rely on this device to give you ready-to-post videos and photos may they be 360 or regular perspective, because of the AI editor in its dedicated application. A solid bet and one of the best action cameras out there.

In conclusion, it is well known that the latest phones including iPhones possess some of the most advanced camera systems that have the capability of capturing high-quality content with ease. But these devices fail, the moment the forces of adventure or rough activities are unleashed on them. This is why, an action camera is absolutely crucial, for the person who wants to record their adrenaline-filled experience, without having to worry about the safety of his/her iPhone. The waterproofing, shock-proofing, dust-proofing, durability, wider angles of view, new perspectives, better battery lives, intent towards rough climates and just mere convenience, makes action camera’s an absolute need, as compared to the iPhone.

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