Stop getting grey snow, bland colors and boring-looking videos by just using a winter setting preset you can activate when you’re in winter wonderland.

Whether you’re skiing, snowboarding or sledding this winter, my DJI Action 4 winter settings will get you amazing video footage every time.

  • Resolution: 4K
  • Framerate: 30 FPS
  • Stabilization: (regular) Rocksteady
  • PRO Settings: On
  • Exposure: Auto
    • Shutter: 1/400 – 1/8000
    • ISO: 100 – 1600
    • EV: +0.7
  • White Balance: 4500K (for a cool blue look)
  • Color: Normal (or D-Log M for color grading)
  • Field of view (FOV): Wide or Ultrawide
  • Image Adjustments:
    • Sharpness: -1
    • Noise Reduction: 0
  • Low-Light Image Enhance: Auto
    (only available in Normal Colors and Wide FOV)
  • Audio:
  • Channel: Stereo
  • Wind-noise reduction: Off

These are designed to be used in white snow-covered scenes.

dji osmo action 4 4
Tip: Save these settings as a preset so you can activate them on the fly.

Using these settings, the camera will only adjust the shutter speed and ISO automatically to adjust the exposure on the fly. Everything else is in your control for consistently high-quality footage!

If you want to fine-tune your settings, you’ll want to know the three most important settings for winter shooting. I’ll not go into every single one here but would recommend another article explaining all DJI Action 4 video settings.

gopro winter snowboarder helmet mount 2
Completely white snow scenery is one of the more difficult environments to use a DJI Action camera in.

3 most important settings in winter

EV Compensation

Recommended: +0.0 to +1.0

This is the most critical one! If you only adjust one setting, this is it.

An Exposure Value below 0 (or automatic EV) is what results in dull footage and grey snow. The camera sees mostly white, thinks everything is overexposed and tries to darken the image.

Using the above settings, your DJI Action 4 is still exposing automatically by adjusting ISO and shutter speed. By setting a fixed EV, you can tell the camera how to expose: in our case, we tell it to overexpose.

gopro winter skier selfie stick 2
Using the correct exposure allows to capture detail in the snow, and prevents it from becoming simply a grey blob.

In my regular cinematic DJI Action 4 settings, I use a negative EV, but in this case, a positive one may save your videos.

On the DJI Mimo app you can even turn on the histogram (or zebras) to objectively judge exposure. Be warned that it will overreact and mark white snow as being overexposed. Start out with EV +0.3 if in doubt.

White Balance

Recommended: 4000K – 5000K

Weird color fluctuations are the trademark of amateur footage. Luckily this is easy to fix with manual white balance.

To create a cool look, you may go down to 4500K or even 4000K for a nice cool blue hue on your winter footage.

gopro winter snowboarder blue hue 2
White Balance can also be used to stylize and get that cool blue hue.

When left on auto WB, the camera will constantly color correct by itself. Now imagine the camera seeing mostly white snow and trying to compensate and reduce all that white color (although the new Action 4 does a good job compared to Osmo Action 3 and Action 2).

This is why colors can look completely off and even change throughout a clip. No bueno.

Easy as that. Set it and forget it.

Color Profile

Recommended: Normal

The Normal color profile provides the saturated colors and high contrast you’d expect from an action cam. In comparison, D-Log M looks bland by design so that you can come in with with heavy color grading to put your style on it.

However, Normal colors with Image Enhancements adds sharpening and other effects on top. You may not like that look.

So, if you want more control over the final edit, go with D-Log M so you can adjust saturation and color balance (WB) later.

Useful winter Accessories

There are lots of mounts and accessories available, some are especially useful for winter filming. These are just a couple of the DJI Action 4 accessories I use regularly.

ND Filters (ND4 + ND8)

Neutral Density filters are basically sunglasses for your camera, reducing the overall exposure and making everything darker – which is really helpful when everything is blindingly white.

This allows lower shutter speeds without overexposure. And a slow shutter results in natural motion blur.
A common misconception: ND filters DO NOT change colors, increase contrast or increase saturation.

Wind (Noise Reduction)

In order to achieve the best possible audio quality, don’t use the menu option for wind noise reduction as this results in weird-sounding software distortion.

Rather, leave wind noise off and muffle wind using a windsock or foam for crisp sound.

A full foam housing works best and is the easiest to use. That’s why I keep an HSU Windslayer on my DJI OA4 or in my camera gear bag at all times.

HOWEVER, I can’t recommend it without restrictions! Using this in snow, there’s a high chance it will get wet and soaking wet reducing its effectiveness. So, feel free to experiment with the built-in software wind noise reduction first and see if you can live with that.

Polarizer filter (PL & CPL)

Polarizers are usually only marginally useful on an action cam as they’re still highly situational. For winter filming in sunny weather, however, they can make a big difference!

They not only make the sky pop in a darker, saturated blue. Even more amazingly, polarizing filters reduce glare coming from highly reflective snow drastically!

There’re two types available: circular (CPL) and (ND-PL) ND-polarizers. CPLs can adjust the level of glare-reduction depending on the angle to the sun. With an action cam, that’s moving around, this is useless.

This is why I’d go for regular PL polarizing filters for an action cam.

Increasing Battery Life in winter

Battery life decreases with colder temperatures and the new “Extreme batteries” are doing a good job holding up in freezing temps.

Still, with additional chilling airflow, batteries suffer in the cold. Here’s a little trick to extend your battery life in winter:

While the camera gets a little warm while filming, it quickly cools off during the gondola ride in freezing temperatures.

Try and keep the batteries at room temperature or at least above freezing. To do this, keep the (spare) battery inside your jacket to heat up with body heat and only insert it right before use.

If the camera is wet from snow, be careful with opening the side door and exposing the electronics to water. Tilt it to the side so the battery slot points down and no water can drip in.

The new “Extreme” batteries can handle the cold well, so you may not even have to do this. Maybe just bring a spare back-up battery in a pocket using the same method.

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