Mounts and accessories are the unseen heroes for an action camera like the DJI Osmo Action 4. Especially for activities like biking, where both hands are occupied, the camera gear can make or break your video – from interesting angles to improving my action cam video and audio quality.
Like many of the top action cams currently, the standard bundle does not ship with any practical accessories for mountain biking. And since the feet of the Osmo Action 4’s magnetic adapter fit all the usual action cam accessories out there, there are countless options.
So many in fact, that choosing the few best ones can be hard.
(find the full DJI Osmo Action 4 review here)
That’s why I’ve accumulated quite a collection of accessories for my DJI OA4. Some of those accessories have a permanent place in my camera gear bag. Some are not as useful as I thought.
Chest mounts for the DJI Osmo Action 4
Yes, they’re more hassle to wear than a helmet mount. But let’s be honest …
Chest mounts are one of the most immersive points of view for the viewer. That angle captures the intensity of the terrain, and the movement of rider and bike gives perspective to what’s going on.
There are many different chest mounts on the market, from first-party DJI and GoPro to countless third-party brands. The higher-end ones feature a padded center plate that’s comfortable to wear all day long. Then there are some like the new DJI Chesty and Telesin’s one, that also have a rear mount on the back for awesome follow-cam shots.
But the greatest difference between all the chest mounts is in their ease of use. All except the GoPro Chesty have two buckles, which are cumbersome to use and press into the rider’s ribs.
This is what really separates GoPro’s chest mount from other manufacturers. It can be worn even when the single-closure buckle is open. Additionally, it’s far easier to put on! For a visual representation of what I’m talking about, check out this video by TimFromWales:
It’s definitely comfortable to wear all day due to its padded chest platform. It also comes with the standard GoPro sliders with rubber grommets, that eliminate rattling sounds. This is a big deal for good audio quality and what sets it apart from the rest. On top of all that, it’s also one of the best-priced ones!
Helmet chin mount
Chinbar mounts combine the best of both worlds from chest and helmet visor mounts: an angle to capture the bike and head movement that always looks towards the upcoming piece of trail.
They are also a great, universal method for any full-face helmet or if your helmet doesn’t provide a level, flat area in the middle of the visor. There are lots of branded chin mounts available, but actually few distinct manufacturers.
There are tons of chin mounts only differing in price. Almost all feature rubber pads and folding material that sit both quietly and securely on any MTB or MX full-face helmets. I went with DJI’s Helmet Chin Strap Mount to test it out for myself.
Adhesive Pads for Helmet Visors
Not my favorite angle, but the easiest way to mount an action cam to yourself has always been the good old adhesive mount. It sticks to helmets, bikes, and any other gear you might want to involve. Most of the time they’re used for helmet mounts, that can withstand crashes, bad weather, and careless transport.
The DJI mount kit’s twisting mounting mechanism works quick and easy but I don’t even use it with the magnetic attachment system. And most importantly, they’re too tall for my taste and rattle a bit!
For sticky pads the GoPro adhesive mount kit is my go-to and here is why:
Only GoPro has an extra flat slider that allows a small footprint when mounted under the visor. It keeps the height minimal and keeps the camera out of my vision. And the rubber grommets eliminate rattling noise and prevent unintentional dismounts.
Storage (SD Card)
Don’t overlook this tiny, but critical piece in your setup! Like most action cams, the Osmo Action 4 does not have built-in storage. So storage capacity has to come from inserting a microSD card.
A compatible one has to have fast read and write speeds for 4K footage or high-framerate filming. There are many great brands like SanDisk, Kingston, Samsung etc. out there.
Whatever you choose, make sure it’s not only big and fast enough, but also from a reputable brand! Cheap, low-quality SD cards are what lead to corrupted files.
I went with a 128 Gigabyte card from SanDisk, which lasts about 4 days’ worth of filming for me.
Just FYI: 1 minute of 4K video at 30 FPS takes up about 375 MB of storage.
To be honest, with the amazing battery life of the OA4, extra batteries fall under quality-of-life accessories instead of must-haves. A single battery will get you through a full day of filming. Usually, I still keep a fully charged backup in my back pocket just in case.
I personally do film a lot when riding and ride multiple days in a row. So DJI’s charging case with 3 batteries is a no-brainer. Especially because it allows me to charge the remaining two while using the camera. On top of that, with charged batteries inside it doubles as a power bank to charge other devices like a smartphone.
With that being said, it’s optional to have. Especially when starting out, a single separate “Extreme Battery” is likely more than enough for most recreational rider-filmers.
Like on a smartphone, a lens or screen protector may even save you money.
While thankfully the camera lens cover is replaceable, the screen is not on the DJI Osmo Action 4. Either way, it costs money if either gets damaged (which I may have happened in the past).
That’s why I like to protect the lens and screen surfaces with tempered glass.
Simple solutions like sticky protector covers for a couple of bucks are a cheap insurance policy. Additionally, there is also real insurance in the form of the official “DJI Care”, which I don’t go with since I never managed to wreck an action cam yet.
Wind noise reduction
Here’s a little-known, cheap accessory that improves MTB POV video quality dramatically.
Not by fancy visuals, but by clean audio that cuts out that distracting, horrible wind noise that’s constantly there when biking. Get the sounds of tires hitting dirt, suspension working and hubs spinning in focus again.
Fortunately, there are foam windscreens available. Most are branded for GoPro cameras, but fit the DJI OA4 housing just fine and cover all the microphones. There are many brands out there, but I go with HSU windslayers as they got one of the densest foams at half the price. Since they sell a dual-pack at the same price.
Be mindful that this will cover the color temperature sensor located between the front mics. It’s responsible for the automatic white balance to work. If you have a manual WB set, you have nothing to worry about.
Carry case for organizing
With additional accessories and mounts comes the need to keep all of it organized, in one place and ready to go at any time. And that doesn’t have to be a pain either. A small simple case keeps all that stuff organized in one place and is easy to throw in your backpack or car.
Keeping it simple here, I just use my small hard-shell GoPro case. It holds everything I need from camera and cage, to battery case, to mounts. Only the chest mount lives in a separate bag. Depending on which extra accessories and which spare parts you bring, there is a case best suited for you.
Additional magnetic mounts
The magnetic attachment system on the DJI Action cameras lifts them above every other action cam in my book. Utilize their full capability by sticking a magnet on every one of your camera mounts – and then leaving it there for ever. This way you’ll never have to search for that perfect camera angle regain! It’s always where you left it last time.
Having the perfect angle reliably every time is so powerful that I got a total of three magnetic mounts.
One for the helmet visor, one for the chin, and one for the chest rig.
The official DJI magnetic mount is certainly one of the strongest and quietest. There are also third-party ones with folding feet like from SmallRig, which I got, but can’t recommend. The folding feet allow the mount to tilt, resulting in wonky angles.
Let’s get into some of the nerdy stuff that’s totally optional, but can take your videos to the next level.
While the camera can keep the image dead-pan leveled by itself, the HorizonLevel feature only works in the narrow FOV – which is mostly useless for MTB. This FOV crops in too much and not only looks unrelatable but also slow.
And this is how gimbal-stabilized POV footage looks:
In order to have the best of both worlds – wide FOV and leveled footage – a gimbal is still the only option. While there are amazing 3-axis gimbals out there, a simple 1-axis one (like the Quark 2 by Noir Matter) is the better choice. It will only level the horizontal plane (the effect you’re after) but not lag behind in corners like 3-axis ones that results in a sea-sick look.
Color Grading for Action Cam Videos
Make your POV footage pop with custom color grades!
Download my FREE LUT specifically for MTB videos:
These are what help you create cinematic motion blur – like I did in the videos above and below. And while they gain in popularity, they are difficult to understand and use. ND filters only work in specific circumstances and are always a compromise between blur and stabilization.
If you get it right tho (and I’ll show you how), what you end up with is amazing-looking cinematic video with strong motion blur that looks fast af.
For the Osmo Action 4 specifically, I found the best settings to use with ND filters for that sweet blur, but still keep the stabilization intact. Feel free to copy them!
This is how that looks:
As far as the actual filters go, I went with the original DJI ND filter set including ND8, ND16 and ND32 filters. However, I only ever use the ND8 and sometimes an ND4 would be nice to have. Those two are the only ones making sense for MTB, where you need stabilization to still work well.
So if you can, get ND4 and ND8 only or a set that has them included. Don’t worry about CPL, UV and all that other stuff. It just adds to the price without making any sense for MTB videos.
So there you have it. Those are the exact accessories I use to make mountain biking POV videos on my DJI Osmo Action 4. Some of them I consider to be must-haves, some are quality-of-life parts and some are plain over-the-top for most of you.
Either way, what goes into your own gear bag is up to you. The main thing is to have fun and be happy with the footage you get!