The smallest high-quality action camera: Insta360 Go 2

4.4
Highly Recommended
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How small is too small when it comes to an action camera? The answer, my friend, is that it can never be too small! But shrinking an object usually means sacrificing functionality and compromising on quality.

Usually, instead of a high res sensor you’ll have to settle for 1080p or lower. Instead of advanced stabilisation you’ll have jerky footage that gives viewers vertigo. But times are changing and so are your action camera options.

Is it possible to include only the critical features – great image quality, ease of use and advanced stabilisation into a tiny package? How about at a reasonable price? Oh and waterproof to 4 metres / 13 feet?

Meet the Insta360 Go 2

Meet the Go 2 – a micro action cam from the Insta360 team. At first we were dubious about the size. It looks like a webcam from 2015. Yet it is also sleek and Apple-esque. How can this tiny piece of gear shoot quality footage in the wet and wild outdoors?

The answer is clear. It may be tiny but it packs a serious punch. Some of the time its 1440p (between HD and 4k) footage was as good, if not better, than our Sony A7III in a water housing. This is what you get when a company builds amazing hardware with software to match. We discovered how good Insta360 software is in our previous review. Now we find that it works for non-360 degree cameras too.

Whether you want to edit short clips on your phone or make a full-length film on your iMac – the software squeezes every drop of quality from the footage captured by the device.

Sample footage from the Insta360 Go 2

We took our Go 2 to Tahiti and Moorea to test it out in a range of conditions. While we didn’t take it surfing in Tahiti, we did document our favorite leisure activity: spying on colorful reef fish. Note that we have used the Go 2 surfing and it is a great performer. Most of all, it is so light and small that you may forget its even there.

Watch our footage here.

Features of the Insta360 Go 2

Micro size

The World’s smallest action camera Insta360 Go 2 is so small that it will fit pretty much anywhere. It’s about about the size of your thumb so you’ll want to make sure you don’t lose it accidentally. It is so small you’ll never notice the weight is gone from your wrist or helmet mount.

Dimensions (W x H x D): 2.1 x 0.9 x 0.8″ / 52.9 x 23.6 x 20.7 mm

Easy mounting options

Mount anywhere. GO 2 is also magnetic – stick it to any magnetic metal surface and you have yourself a mount. But, it’s the mounting accessories that really make this camera so flexible. An innovative shell clips over the camera, enabling you to lock it to and GoPro-compatible mount.

There are also a range of Insta360 m ounts such as the magnetic t-shirt mount, meaning your camera is attached to your shirt leaving your hands free for action.

Accessories (included with the camera)

The box includes a great collection of accessories.

Magnet Pendant

Slip the Magnet Pendant around your neck and GO 2 magnetically snaps right on. POV shots have never been so easy.

Easy Clip

Clip GO 2 to your hat or headband with the Easy Clip. Now with an adjustable design so you can get the angle just right. 

Lens Guard

Protect GO 2’s lens with wipeout-proof hardened glass. It’s easy to replace too. 

Pivot Stand

Mount GO 2 to almost anything with the Pivot Stand’s sticky base. A new foldable design makes it easier to store in between shots.

Stabilization

The footage speaks for itself. Insta360 Go 2 provides stabilization comparable with a DSLR on a gimbal. Sure, there might be a little distortion but motion is so silky smooth that it’s smoother than real life. FlowState Stabilization is possibly the Go 2’s best feature.

Image quality

The easiest way to check out if a camera lives up to its promise is to play back your footage on a large modern television. We did this with the video above and it is unbelievably crisp.

In fact, some of the shots, like the angel fish, look professionally recorded. And they were captured in 1440p by a camera the size of your thumb.

Specs

Video ResolutionFlowState Stabilization (Pro Video mode) 2560×[email protected], 30fps, 25fps, 24fps 1920×[email protected], 30fps, 25fps, 24fps
Basic Stabilization (Video mode) 2560×[email protected], 30fps, 25fps, 24fps 1920×[email protected], 30fps, 25fps, 24fps
HDR 2560×[email protected], 24fps 1920×[email protected], 24fps
Timelapse 2560×[email protected] 1920×[email protected]
TimeShift 2560×[email protected] 1920×[email protected]
Slow Motion 1920×[email protected]
Photo Resolution16:9, 2560×1440
1:1, 2560×2560
9:16, 1440×2560
Film Panorama, 2938×1088
Video FormatMP4

Charging case

The charging case makes this camera even more unique. Only slightly bigger than Apple AirPods, the case opens up and presents a charging dock, a tripod, and a set of controls. This is perfect for the budget action vlogger and the web streamer on the go.

In fact, the product is very Apple in look and feel.

Waterproof

The Go 2 is waterproof to 4m (13ft). This is plenty for surfing and outdoor enthusiasts.

ND Filter Set

Pro photographers know how Neutral Density filters improve image quality. You get punchy skies and fluffy white clouds. Say goodbye to haze. Therefore, we were pleasantly surprised to see the it’s possible to swap out the Go 2 Lens Guard for an ND filter to get balanced colors and contrast on even the brightest days (sold separately).

Custom design

A unique feature of the Go 2 is the ability to design a custom skin for your camera. Any color, any style is possible if plain white is not for you.

Summary

The Go 2 is a heroic camera with amazing image quality and perfect performance above and below the waves. Our only gripe is that you sometimes get confused about whether or not you are recording. There is one button on the front face of the camera. While the camera does vibrate when it starts and stops recording you may get confused in high-action situations. In bright sunlight you may not be able to see the blue LED that signals recording is happening.

However, get past that little hurdle and practice using the camera and you’ll soon find your flow. Speaking of flow, the FlowState stabilization – as we mentioned above – is amazing, beating much higher priced devices.

In terms of quality, 1440p is great for most uses. We can’t wait until this little guy gets upgraded to full 4k.

The battery life is around 150 hours, shooting at 1080p, and it holds 32GB of action. Shooting at full quality quickly fills the memory card so you’ll need a mobile phone with plenty of capacity or a laptop to offload footage. Note: the memory card is not removable.

If you’re looking for a tiny camera with huge performance then the Go 2 is for you.

The smallest high-quality action camera: Insta360 Go 2
Performance
Video Quality
Usability
Best features
Tiny size
Amazing stabilization
Quick charge
Needs improvement
Tricky sometimes to know if you pressed record
4.4
Highly Recommended
Find online