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Kelpfish

DJI Phantom GoPro helicopter

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Hello all,

 

I am interested in buying the latest GoPro aerial system and was wondering if the tool of choice for the Hero 3+ black is the DJI Phantom Quad Copter and gimbal system like this one: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1018650-REG/dji_cp_pt_000083_h32d_phantom_2_with_h3_2d.html/prm/alsVwDtl

 

I currently have the GoPro and want to make sure I am closing all the gaps of performance by purchasing all the needed accessories and main unit up front. For example, are the batteries individual AA where I can use my own or are they some sort of proprietary pack?

 

In your experience (those who have used this system or something similar) what are your warnings, recommendations, tricks of the trade etc?

 

Any help is appreciated.

 

Joe

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Hi,

What is you major interest ? Aerial photography or aerial cinematography ? That will determine which model you should go for.

Do you need first person view?Which means do you need to see what is the view up in the sky from the remote control ?

If you need to make a nice composition for taking pictures or video, you must have a video transmission from the Phantom to send back the live image back to the ground.

IMHO, I have been flying with Phantom 2 vision for a while. And now DJI just launched Phantom 2 vision PLUS, and I ordered it without question.

It is simple to set up, with 3 axis gimbal stabilisation for video, live view wifi transmission to my mobile phone....

With using Go Pro, actually you are knowing nothing what images you are going to take.

Of douse, B&H provide a comprehensive package to provide you a GoPro first person view set up. But since the launch of Phantom 2 vision plus, I don't see you have any advantages by using Go Pro.

BTW, you may go to Skypixel.com where you can find Eric there to give you some professional advice. He is now DJI director of aerial imaging.

 

Regards

Edmond

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Hi Edmond,

 

I am interested in mostly video, but yes it would be nice to have a live view. That would be a significant help in my objectives, which is to create 10-60 second HD clips. I may use stills too, but video is my primary goal. That's cool about Eric working there, I'll give him a shout.

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You do know GoPro 4 is just around the corner right? If you can wait, don't get the GoPro 3+ right now.

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Hi Joe

 

DJI has a updated version of the Phantom 2 with H3-3D Zenmuse gimbal. this version is 3 axis not 2 of the earlier version. not sure where you are based but i have a whole bunch of DJI stuff at my ADEX booth. including a modded interchangeable lens Go Pro h3+ to go onto these puppies.

 

Live viewing is possible. Including remote recording. There are plenty of add ons and accessories for various type of shooting. The sky is the limit.

 

The vision 2+ is just announced that camera system can shoot RAW digital stills and video. Very neat setup. Video wise i still think with a Go Pro you can upgrade it when new version comes out.

 

At NAB GoPro has new stuff such as a 3D system. Oddly they also show off a back pack?

 

cheers

 

David

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Hi David,

 

I am in Southern California. I was looking at the Phantom system with their own camera (not the GoPro) but I am not sure if it's interchangeable if/when new Phantom versions come out. Based on your comments it's probably not. But with the GoPro 4 soon to be out I can just swap cameras. That's an advantage. I am ready to buy now, just need to get the facts and pluses and minuses. I agree on the gimbal, too. That is a sweet set up. I watched the video today...impressive.

 

Also, from a quality perspective does anyone have any experience between the Phantom camera and the GoPro in terms of video?

 

Thanks for the feedback.

 

Joe

Edited by Kelpfish

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You do know GoPro 4 is just around the corner right? If you can wait, don't get the GoPro 3+ right now.

 

Yea, that's a big advantage when using the Phantom...I can upgrade cameras. Have you or anyone else used the wifi viewing system on the phantom? If it's a huge advantage then that makes the decision harder, but if it isn't a real advantage because you need to watch the plane more than the controls then the decision gets easier.

Edited by Kelpfish

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I'm really enjoying this conversation. I've been eyeing these quadcopters lately, but don't know enough about them to make a decision. This is turning into a good education. Thanks, and please keep it going.

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Yea, that's a big advantage when using the Phantom...I can upgrade cameras. Have you or anyone else used the wifi viewing system on the phantom? If it's a huge advantage then that makes the decision harder, but if it isn't a real advantage because you need to watch the plane more than the controls then the decision gets easier.

Hi Joe,

Sorry about my limited experience on aerial imaging,but I would like to share why I particular choose Phantom 2 vision and so as the newest Phantom 2 vision plus, and I don't mean to sell anything.

Live view feeding to ground is essential.

Imagine Phantom 2 is a box, 1ft x 1 ft, and you are away from it 100m,you actually cannot identify the front and rear.

Even worse if it fly high in the sky where visibility,ambient light will interfere you sighting the Phantom. If you use a Go Pro without live view feeding,how can you tell the camera is heading the correct direction that you are going to film.

Also,I did many times when I look at the remote control and then cannot track my phantom back when my eye is back to the sky."OMG,where is my Phantom", I normally scream like this. I can only rely on the live view to fly it back to my sight. Or I will turn it to "home' mode to let Phantom fly back "home".

Battery, air time is so precious. Exactly like diving, you treasure each breath you take. If you find your Go Pro is filming wrong when back to ground, and you are running low on battery,and you have no place to recharge your battery....it's time to go home then.

I like taking video as well, Phantom 2 vision is great, no connection, no wiring need, ready to fly right from the box. Unfortunate, it has no stabilization device and I am not happy with it.

I think you are very lucky since you can go straight to Phantom 2 vision plus, which many of us is dreaming of before. Now my Phantom 2 vision will be my training aircraft as I need more practise to fly better.

I don't mean to hard sell any product and if you feel so , I want to apologise in advance.

But no matter what set up you prefer, practice in a small field, familiar what the control. Taking video in a straight line. Hover the Phantom if you are not sure of anything and "home" mode is fantastic !!

 

Have fun with aerial imaging !!

 

Cheers

Edmond

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I bought one to play with some ideas. Went with the Phantom 2 and the Go Pro Black +3. I looked at other quadcopters that could lift larger cameras but the price quickly grows exponentially every time you go up in weight. No problem hitting $6k. For my purposes I figure the Gopros are getting so good who knows what the 5-6 version will be able to do. JUST DONT CHANGE THE FORM! Do buy a small practice quadcopter rather than one of the Computer based ones! I never played video games and taking one of the little ones in real weather without GPS was excellent practice. Even when I got mildly proficient I still felt very nervous about what would happen when I took the the Phantom 2 out, especially over water.

 

I went with this package from DSLR Pros http://www.dslrpros.com/Products/tabid/94/ProductID/1222/language/en-US/Default.aspx

 

As advertised the Phantom is much easier to fly. The little time I have had with it some of my concerns have been reduced. More suggestions. Do get a monitor! I find it hard to see how the quadcopter is orientated the farther away it is so the monitor is a huge help. Don't launch or land it in sand or fine dirt. The motors are easily clogged up and they are not plug and play. If you need to replace a motor you have to take the whole thing apart and do some soldering. Do put on the Blade Guards. When starting you will tip it over and helps protects the blades from breaking and hurting the motors when you jam them into the grass while still spinning;)

 

Quick piece of practice video, nothing special.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ur31LUZ8XD0

 

Otherwise looking forward to it not raining here so I can get it out more.

Edited by NWDiver

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I'm really enjoying this conversation. I've been eyeing these quadcopters lately, but don't know enough about them to make a decision.

 

 

You might like to join a local Model Aviation (Remote Control) Flying Club in your area.

 

This is what I have done.

 

I decided I would earn my "wings" the old fashion way by joining a club and benefitting from the vast amount of real world experince that the other club members have acumulated. Joining a club also can offer a free insurance with their membership that covers all AMA and MAAC events.

 

Just got my copy of "Model Aviation Canada" news in, and was reading about the new Phantom (2) Vision Quadcopter. Seems they are actively trying to discourage the use of this quadcopter, as they will not permit the use of this quadcopter at any of their MAAC sanctioned fields. Don't know about AMA field sites.

 

Seems DJI has seen fit to transmit FPV (First Person Video) signals on 2.4 Ghz WIFI which could have the unintended effect of blanking out everyone else's signals to their aircraft nearby causing unintended crashes for other fliers.

 

The remote control of this quadcopter is on the 5.8Ghz frequency and can cause interfere or loss of signal with other operators recieving thier FPV signals on the same frequency.

 

Incidently, the 5.8Ghz frequency is located in the Amateur Radio Band here in Canada, and I suspect it is the same in the United States. This means you need an Amateur Radio Operators License to operate any 5.8Ghz equipment.

 

MAAC seems to be quite upset about this quadcopter and are even talking about forming campaign to educate store owners and sellers about the possible consequences of operating these particular quadcopters around other model aviation pilots.

 

Sorry to muddy the waters, but I think anyone thinking of flying a quadcopter should ally themselves with a local model aircraft flying club to get the best experience they can.

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Thanks Poliwog, that's interesting news. BTW, I'm also a Triumph owner (TR-3A and GT-6+).

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In a mildly related post - see what Stan Waterman thinks of it - on the Aggressor over the Tibbetts off Cayman Brac.

If anyone is interested, that's a Fatshark Predator system Stan is using.

 

Edited by sjspeck

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Do we need a permit to fly this type of quadcopter in remote places like Socorro Islands or Cocos? There is a military base in Socorro so I really hesitate if I should bring one there. By the way, have you guys experienced any trouble with the customs of Mexico when bringing this quadcopter? Thanks.

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I've seen Tim fly his with the first person viewing before - in fact, that's really what got me interested in them.

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So the wifi from a go pro does not talk to the plane which in turn transmits live viewing to the remote control unit/Iphone? Sounds like not, but worth asking.

 

And just to be sure:

 

1. Has anyone had any legal issues flying their plane in the USA? Or is a license really needed?

 

2. The camera that comes with the latest Phantom 2 is NOT SWAPPABLE with future new camera versions? So say Phantom comes out with a newer model of camera. Does that mean I have to purchase a whole new Phantom systemm?

 

3. I believe that I read the Phantom only comes with a 4 gig capacity card. Has anyone found this to be insufficient? I shoot a lot of video and 4 gigs can fill up quickly.

 

 

Joe

Edited by Kelpfish

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O dear its been ages since I have been here, hello to all that remember me :-).

 

I see the topic of Multirotors has found its way here too.

I have been building and flying them for a year now.

Start off getting a Phantom with a gimbal, they are very easy to fly in GPS or ATTI mode.

Then when you think you are good at flying, switch to full manual mode and learn to fly all over again. :-)

 

From that flying FPV, via video goggles is something most end up wanting to do.

Lets you do cool stuff like this, its a 600 gram mini runnig 5 inch props with a Mobius action camera.

Flying these tiny Quadcopters is the perfect way to hone ones skils, once you fly a mini, flying the larger ones becomes rather easy.

Will try to answer questions about them if you have any.

 

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Thanks Wagsy - good to see you here again. It must be a little odd to view yourself as the copter comes up on yourself from behind as you fly one of these.

Edited by SwiftFF5

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Just how one pack quad copter, gopro, camera, laptop, camera housing, tablet, camera for land use, all in to carry on to a plane?

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Just how one pack quad copter, gopro, camera, laptop, camera housing, tablet, camera for land use, all in to carry on to a plane?

Yea good point. I am hopeful that Eric chimes in here as there are still some important questions to answer.

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The kit I bought came with a case which fits everything you need. You could get a laptop or tablet in it also. The case would be ok in the larger International/Domestic carriers but no way it will fit in the smaller regional/puddle jumpers in areas like SE Asia. You would have to Gate Check it.

 

http://www.dslrpros.com/DesktopModules/CATALooKStore/MakeThumbImage.aspx?ID=%2fPortals%2f0%2fassets%2fProducts%2fPhantom+2+kits%2ftorontoDP.jpg&PORTALID=0&ssl=true

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I have been doing a lot of research and found a lot about random Phantom fly aways and poor customer service around this issue. It reminds me of the the Nikon D600 sensor spot issue where Nikon refused to acknowledge the problem until nearly two years later. I think I will look at other alternatives. Any ideas? I do like the 25 minute flight time of the Phantom, though. But too many seemingly experienced flyers are reporting fly aways even with the claim that they followed step by step calibration instructions. With my luck, I would lose it on day one. Some lost their after day one and others after hundreds of flights, then all of a sudden it's gone.

 

Would love to hear any suggestions to alternatives.

 

Joe

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Just how one pack quad copter, gopro, camera, laptop, camera housing, tablet, camera for land use, all in to carry on to a plane?

 

 

You can't really if you bring all that other stuff, the DJI quad doesn't break down small enough since it's a solid body quad - only the struts/camera mount come off somewhat easily. DJI sells one for their complete system or there's this one:

 

http://www.amazon.com/Professional-Cases-Phantom-GoPro-Accessories/dp/B00I8UCVZQ/ref=sr_1_11?ie=UTF8&qid=1397985066&sr=8-11&keywords=dji+phantom+case

 

IDK about you all but I also carry regs, mask and a few clothes so I'll be checking mine.

Edited by sjspeck

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Just return from Raja Ampat and filmed an aerial video.

Vision Plus is awesome.

 

Cheers

Edmond

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Been looking at the EVO800 for the GH4 - but man do they get pricey!!

 

Love it Edmond!

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