Technology

Insta360 Go 2 review: This small action camera thinks really big

Action cameras come in all shapes and sizes, but the Insta360 Go 2 is among the smallest and most nimble out there. Only two inches long, the Go 2 is portable, clippable, attachable, and stickable. The Go 2 is significantly smaller than Insta360’s own One X2 and One R cameras. It’s meant for everyday hobbyists and video creators who favor smaller gear over bulkier, more advanced shooting rigs. Is the Go 2 the action cam for you? Find out in Android Authority‘s Insta360 Go 2 review.

See also: Best action cameras

What you need to know about the Insta360 Go 2

Insta360 Go 2 tripod

Credit: Eric Zeman / Android Authority

Insta360’s Go 2 is a refreshed version of the company’s popular, diminutive stick-on Insta360 Go. Its size gives it a big advantage when compared to larger competing cameras. The Insta360 Go 2 doesn’t aim for the 360-degree video market; rather, it tackles the wide-angle, point-of-view market. It’s meant to be attached to people, places, or things that are in the heart of the action. Clip it to your shirt or your bike helmet for the ultimate in first-person video.

The camera comes with everything you need. The charging case, which is robust and includes basic camera controls, can act as a miniature tripod. Moreover, it has a metal 1/4-inch screw mount for a real tripod. A special clip allows you to attach the Go 2 to a cap or helmet.

Insta360 Go 2 with accessories

Credit: Eric Zeman / Android Authority

A magnetic pendant is also in the box. You wear the pendant around your neck and allow the pendant to hang under your clothes. You can then attach the camera to the pendant magnetically through your shirt. The magnet is really strong. Last, there’s a pivot stand in the box that accommodates slapping the camera onto smooth surfaces, such as a car hood or window It sticks surprisingly well, though driving with it on my car had me nervous.

Many competing action cameras are sold without the accessories needed to attach the camera to yourself, your bike, or whatever. Price-wise, it goes up against offerings such as the GoPro Hero 7 and the DJI Osmo Action 4K cameras.

What’s good?

Insta360 Go 2 finger perspective

Credit: Eric Zeman / Android Authority

It goes anywhere. The charging case is about the same size as the case for Apple AirPods, meaning it can easily go in your pocket. The Go 2 itself is about the size of your thumb, which makes it highly portable and usable. It’s no bother at all to toss the Go 2 into a weekend bag just in case an opportunity for video should pop up.

It’s also waterproof. With an IPX8 rating, it can handle submersion in water up to 4m (13ft). That means it’s safe from the mountain to the beach and everywhere in between. I wouldn’t call it rugged, but it’s surely robust enough for some action.

Video quality is very good. It is limited to a max resolution of 2,560 x 1,440, but the results are sharp and clean. The wide aperture lens (f/2.2) and high-speed shutter make for bright, crisp video that impresses. Stabilization is outstanding and shooting modes are flexible. You can adjust the angle of view, the frame rate, as well as resolution. Three separate color profiles allow you to dial in the look you want, and everything can be edited in post.

Insta360 Go 2 photo sample

Credit: Eric Zeman / Android Authority

Battery life is solid. The camera has a 210mAh battery and the charging case has an additional 1,100mAh battery, meaning the case can charge the camera up to five times. Basic battery life is limited to about 30 minutes per charge when shooting 1,440 POV video with basic stabilization. If you opt for the more advanced FlowState stabilization battery life decreases a bit. It takes 35 minutes to charge the camera and 65 minutes to charge the case. This is really good for this category of device.

I also really dig the auto-horizon function. You can mount the camera vertically or horizontally and it always knows which way is up (even if you don’t).

What’s not so good?

Insta360 Go 2 on pendant

Credit: Eric Zeman / Android Authority

As with a lot of action cameras, connecting to a smartphone can be a bit of a pain. Wi-Fi is required, and you have to jump through several hoops to get the phone and camera talking properly.

The on-camera UI is a bit clunky. I appreciate that the charging case lets you cycle through the various shooting modes, but it takes time. Your best bet is to rely on the app for everything.

Usable internal storage is limited to just 28GB — and there’s no expansion slot.

Usable internal storage is limited to just 28GB — and there’s no expansion slot. Granted, the Go 2 doesn’t capture 4K footage, but even the 1,440 footage can fill up the storage in a hurry. You’ll find yourself transferring video to your phone or PC often.

Insta360 Go 2 in sticky stand

Credit: Eric Zeman / Android Authority

Shooting 4K at 60fps is the holy grail of video quality at the moment. Unfortunately, the Go 2 maxes out at 1,440p at up to 50fps. Both slow motion and time-lapse are available shooting modes, with frame rates ranging from 0.5fps to 120fps. Sadly for Insta360, some competing cameras in this price range can capture 4K video.

Insta360 Go 2 review: Should I buy it?

Insta360 Go 2 hand perspective

Credit: Eric Zeman / Android Authority

Sometimes size matters. If small is what you need, the Insta360 Go 2 has you covered in spades. It’s among the smallest, most flexible action cameras on the market. The fact that the kit covers all the basics in terms of accessories means you truly have access to high-quality video anywhere you go.

The Insta360 Go 2 is half the size of competing action cams, yet it still packs big features into its tiny footprint.

It all comes at a price, however. A lot of 4K-capable action cameras fall into the $200 to $300 price range. At $299.99, the Insta360 Go 2 is on the pricey side — and it doesn’t shoot 4K video. If 4K is a must-have, then you’ll need to look elsewhere. If you favor the portability and usability of the Go 2 and can get by on 1440p video, the Go 2 delivers a lot of bang for the buck.

Insta360 Go 2

Insta360’s Go 2 is a refreshed version of the company’s popular, diminutive stick-on Insta360 Go. If small is what you need, the Insta360 Go 2 is among the smallest, most flexible action cameras on the market.

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