I am surprised no-one else has beat me to this,but the DJI phantom 3 has been released and is not as expensive as you might think when considering that is packs the same tech as the DJI inspire 1 (such as lightbridge and the indoor vision sensors)

Today DJI has announced the new Phantom 3 quadcopter which is released in two flavors, the Phantom 3 Advanced, and the Phantom 3 Professional

With the previous DJI Phantom releases, DJI have usualy have one version in each phantom series as the budget option with no integrated camera, but today there was no mention of this as the naming of the phantom 3 Pro and Advanced leaves some scope for a camera-less version so you can use other third party gimbals or cameras such as a gopro.

Apart from the new fancy 4K camera the other neat features (inherited from the DJI Inspire) include a indoor optic flow sensor for indoor flight, and a ne GPS receiver that supports GLONASS like the new walkera drones. But my favourite feature is the integrated of the DJI lightbridge system built into the DJI phantom 3 allowing you to stream 720p video back home to your android or IOS device.

In terms of the 4K camera, some thought has gone into this, with a f/2.8 shooter now has a 94-degree fixed field of view which is narrower than the DJI Phantom 2 Vision + which means your videos and pictures will not be distorted with the fish eye effect. Furthermore the narrow field of view means that you are less likely to get any props or legs in the video when banking at extreme angles. Also you have more control over the camera allowing you to adjust things like ISO, Exposure, shutter speed and color filters etc..






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Comment by Steve on April 8, 2015 at 2:30pm

Comment by benbojangles on April 8, 2015 at 3:59pm

I'm at a stage in my quadcopter/drone hobby where I feel completely comfortable and at peace when flying. I know all my possibilities and have overcome and know how to put myself at ease prior to launch. I truly love 3DR APM flight control systems and feel confident with my little old atmega chipped drone. Three years have passed for me since I got started in the hobby.

At my stage, where I am now I have these observations:

-It's achievable on a budget with DIY

-I'm not really feeling optical flow is an imperative for me

-I don't really need the expense of lightbridge (I'm quite impressed with my 2.4ghz & 5.8ghz budget combination for it's price and 'just about good enough' quality)

-I really REALLY love droidplanner/Tower and telemetry to the point where I'm happy to fly with a few tablet presses and a comfortable chair to then relax in (I've learned 2D mapping & missions)

-I really love Mavlink OSD on my fpv video screen.

-I go super budget with 330-size quadcopters: KK board, servo gimbal, fpv camera, and use it to put a smile on my face without the anxiety of equipment cost & glitch worry. I love the (feels like) rocket speed of my 330 quad, and I love that I can carry it in a backpack.

I guess all-in-all i'm not really that impressed with the whole DJI-thing: another year - another higher res camera, longer range than last year etc etc. We all know that another year with our hobby will yield knowledge and improvements and I don't need a company telling me I can have these improvements if I part with over a thousand dollars.

This comfort I feel, is allowing me to look further into possible creative uses and purposes now - smoke skywriting, mapping, experimenting with new sensor ideas.

That is all I guess.

Here is a map I made yesterday (and I was astonished by the ease in which it all worked out):

Comment by benbojangles on April 8, 2015 at 4:08pm

....Oh and I really love droneshare & Doarama!!!

Comment by Rob on April 8, 2015 at 4:11pm

well.. its a lot easier to "just buy a DJI" and now that HD video transmission is standard....

Comment by Mike T on April 8, 2015 at 4:32pm

i really dont want to have to buy a DJI, i wish everyone else would step up their game. where is the z15 gimbal competitor? Where is the RTF 4k quad competitor? DJI are going to become a monopoly soon and i hate them! of course i can buy a 3 axis go pro gimbal and spend months trying to get it balanced and tuned properly, but i'm getting pretty sick of doing that. also optical flow? complete waste of time....

Comment by Aaron Scantlin on April 8, 2015 at 4:59pm
DJI only announced the Phantom 3, to be clear; no release date has been announced.
Comment by AA on April 8, 2015 at 5:00pm

Two different companies and paths -- 3DR grew out of this DIY community. P3 is clearly focused on the "flying camera" market -- presentation today was done by their director of photography followed by presentation from a professional photographer and a housewife who took up "photography as a way to give meaning to her life."  There is a larger market for the later.  3DR just got a round of funding including from Richard Bransom.  All these investors want return on their money.  3DR will have to go after DJI by becoming less tinkering oriented and more consumer friendly.  SOLO should be a step in that direction but not quite yet.  I am guessing they rushed SOLO to compete with P3.

Comment by AA on April 8, 2015 at 5:15pm

From their site "Orders will be shipped based on the order in which they were paid, starting in mid May."

Comment by Aaron Scantlin on April 8, 2015 at 5:18pm
Oops! I stand corrected! I didn't catch that during the announcement.
Comment by AA on April 8, 2015 at 5:23pm

They did not mention it in the presentation -- I was looking for it.  The delivery date comes up when you hit buy.


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