Insta360 Flow Review | New Mobile Gimbal in the Market

Insta360 has launched its latest product, the Insta360 Flow, a lightweight and foldable handheld smartphone gimbal designed to help you create stunning videos with ease. Read the Insta360 Flow Review to get more information to decide if you can buy or not.

With a reputation for delivering quality products, the company’s previous offering, the Insta360 One X2, was a huge hit among consumers. I had the chance to try it out myself and loved it, which is why I was excited to review the new Insta360 Flow.

When we’re out and about and want to capture special moments, our go-to device is usually our mobile phone. With high-quality video capabilities, smartphones have become our preferred tool for recording our travels, having fun with friends, and even creating low-cost, high-quality films. 

The Insta360 Flow is a perfect example of such equipment, and I couldn’t wait to see how it performs.

Insta360 Flow Review
Insta360 Flow Review 

Build Quality

The Insta360 flow gimbal is designed with a focus on portability and durability. It is compact, lightweight and foldable, with dimensions of 79x162x36mm and a weight of 369g without the magnetic phone clamp and 401g with it attached. The magnetic phone clamp is detachable and thoughtfully designed, allowing you to quickly remove your phone and fold up the gimbal for easy storage in your pocket or bag.

The main components of the gimbal are made of solid plastic, but it doesn’t feel flimsy or poorly constructed. The back of the gimbal arm features a transparent plastic panel that provides a peek into the internal technology of the gimbal, adding a nice aesthetic touch. Additionally, there’s a rubber grip that fits snugly over the handle of the gimbal, providing added friction for a more secure grip.

The magnet used to attach the mobile phone to the gimbal is incredibly strong, so you can trust that your phone won’t come loose or fall off, protecting it from potential damage. Overall, the Insta360 Flow gimbal is well-built and feels like it can withstand regular use and minor bumps and knocks without any issues.

Once your phone is mounted on the Insta360 Flow gimbal, you can also attach a small LED light that is color temperature-controlled and has varying brightness levels. The button on top of the light allows you to adjust the color temperature modes to balance out your lighting depending on where you are shooting. This makes it easy to get great lighting for your videos even in challenging conditions.

In addition to the LED light, there’s also a flip-open cold shoe point on the Flow where you can mount a Rode Wireless Go II receiver. By connecting the cable via the lightning port, you can get great audio for your videos without any wires getting in the way. This makes it easy to capture high-quality audio to go with your stunning video footage.

The Insta360 Flow also features well-designed tripod legs that provide a sturdy base for the gimbal. Even when the arm is fully extended to 215mm, the tripod legs firmly hold the gimbal in place. When retracted, the legs interlink and lock around a 1/4-inch threaded hole, allowing you to easily mount the gimbal on a tripod plate for added stability.

This feature comes in handy when you need to shoot for extended periods or want to capture still photos. The tripod legs are also foldable, which means that the gimbal remains compact and easy to carry around.

Battery Backup

The Insta360 Flow is equipped with a 2900mAh battery that provides up to 12 hours of performance on a single charge. This is more than enough for most use cases and I found that I never had to worry about running out of power during a shoot. Additionally, the Flow comes with a USB-C cable for charging which is a convenient feature, as USB-C is becoming more and more common.

Features of the Insta360 Flow

The Insta360 Flow is loaded with features that can be accessed via the app to enhance your creative possibilities. Some of the standout features include:

  • Panorama: Capture 360°, 240°, 180°, or a 3×3 grid format. It’s the first gimbal that can shoot 360° panoramas.
  • Timeshift or hyperlapse: Create hyper-lapsed and stabilized footage.
  • Motion Timelapse: Use the tripod and shoot over a period of time between two points.
  • Dolly Zoom: Zoom in or out from a subject to emulate the Hollywood effect.
  • Hoop Mode: Basketball fans mode tracks the ball and hoops to recognize when a basket is made then saves the highlights for editing later.

Smart and intuitive control with SmartWheel

The Insta360 Flow has a built-in SmartWheel that is similar to the click wheel of the Apple iPod. The SmartWheel offers a minimalist design and intuitive control with many useful functions. The SmartWheel has a mechanical rotary wheel, physical buttons, and a touch function. The SmartWheel is used as the central control element for recording control and video playback.

Here are some of the features the Insta360 Flow SmartWheel offers:

  • Zoom Control: You can smoothly zoom in and out with one hand by rotating the SmartWheel on the outer edge.
  • Mode Switching: You can easily switch modes by swiping the touchscreen clockwise or counterclockwise. Small LEDs in the SmartWheel also indicate which mode is currently activated.
  • Shift key: You can rotate the smartphone to vertical portrait mode for shorter videos by double-pressing the Shift key.
  • Trigger button: The trigger button offers several functions. For example, by pressing it once, you can activate the tracking function (Deep Track 3.0). If you press it twice, the smartphone is re-centered. And if you press it three times, you can flip the smartphone’s rear camera for high-resolution selfie shots.

Insta360 flow review : Performance

For me, it worked great with no issues and I can see the versatility of the gimbal for a lot of situations. The gimbal powers on and snaps into action with a simple unlocking of the arm, so there’s no delay in getting the shot you want quickly. Powering on and off can also be done via the power button, but I did find the unlocking of the arm power quite useful. It rotates very easily with the touch of a button and remains steady when sprinting in both horizontal and vertical orientations.

The app is feature-packed and is quite easily navigable with no delay in any of the functions. Bluetooth connection was stable and never dropped which has happened in the past with other gimbals I’ve used at work. The AI tracking feature is massively helpful when it comes to videoing moving subjects as once locked, simply done by raising your hand if filming yourself, or a click of the handle button, and the camera automatically frames and tracks your subject.

Review of the insta360 flow

The Insta360 Flow comes with a feature-packed app that allows you to unlock its full potential. The app is easy to navigate, and there’s no delay in accessing any of the functions. Some of the features that you can access through the app include panorama, timeshift, motion timelapse, dolly zoom, and hoop mode. The AI capability of the app helps you edit video on the go.

Additionally, the app allows you to connect the gimbal to your smartphone via Bluetooth, and the connection is stable, with no reported drops. You can also use the app to control the AI tracking feature, which helps in capturing moving subjects. Overall, the Insta360 app adds to the convenience and ease of use of the Insta360 Flow gimbal.

What I Liked

  • Compact size.
  • Feature-packed App.
  • Price point

What I Didn’t Like

  • The product comes in Summit White (which is a personal preference), but it is also available in Stone Gray.
  • Unfortunately, the carry case is a bit of a letdown in terms of aesthetics, as it looks and feels like an afterthought. Personally, I never used the carry case and just put the gimbal in my pocket or camera bag instead, which is easy to do thanks to its compact size.

DO YOU REALLY NEED Insta360 Flow? Who is it for?

The Insta360 Flow is not really intended for low-budget filmmaking, as there are other gimbals on the market that offer more features and sturdier builds for that purpose. Instead, this gimbal is targeted towards everyday use, such as capturing moments, traveling, having fun with friends, and filming vlogs or to-camera pieces when mounted on a desktop or tripod. It could also be appealing to influencers who want to create content on-the-go.

Insta360 Flow VS DJI OSMO Mobile 6

The Insta360 Flow is really a direct competitor to the DJI Osmo Mobile 6. But how does it compare?

Insta360 FlowDJI OSMO Mobile 6

All in one design as the tripod is built in into the gimbal.

A potential concern with the Insta360 Flow’s built-in legs is that if one of them gets damaged or broken, it cannot be easily replaced, unlike other gimbals where the mini tripod can be replaced inexpensively. 

Additionally, these legs may not be as stable as traditional mini tripod legs that come with other gimbals. However, it is still possible to use mini tripod legs with the Insta360 Flow, as it has a tripod port at the bottom.

You have to attach the tripod seperately and it is not already mounted or inside.

You can fold the flow with the mobile phone attached with the clamp

You have to remove the phone and then only you can close the gimbal

Faster Processing: Since you can mount your phone when it is closed it is one step faster compared to using the dji gimbal 
Flow Tracking: The AI Tracking for this one is for sure better because it can memorise and recover the tracking when the tracking get lost for more seconds.

The flow tracking here doesn’t wait for that long and it looses the tracking.

The Insta360 Flow supports tracking even in slow motion mode

Osmo Mobile 6 Doesn’t

Check Insta360 Flow HereCheck DJI Osmo Mobile 6 Here

Conclusion: should you buy Insta360 Flow?

In conclusion, the Insta360 Flow gimbal is a highly portable and versatile tool that delivers great results and is comparable and at times better than the existing smartphone gimbals in the market. Its foldable design makes it easy to carry around, while the tripod and extendable selfie stick offer additional flexibility for creative filming with multiple shooting modes. This gimbal is perfect for everyday use, traveling, and creating fun videos with friends which doesn’t need any further stabilization. 

The insta360 app is packed with features that can enhance your video-making experience, and the cost of the unit is very reasonable at $159 or 170 EUR. Overall, the Insta360 Flow is a solid contender in the market, offering users a great way to improve their mobile phone videos and unleash their creative potential.

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