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New DJI Phantom 4 with sonar and A.I. can track moving objects, fly automatically


Andrew Reid
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Also, the Phantom 4's specs page says it has D-log and Cinema-D. Don't know if that was a feature on previous Phantoms. Unfortunately the test footage on The Verge preview still shows the propeller blades coming into the shot. 

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I do a lot of aerial video and I don't find this P4 very interesting. Not that It's a bad product but on a video standpoint, it brings very little compared to the previous P3 Pro.

Still does 4K30 at 60Mbps, similar ISO performance, no new log or Codec.

In other words, the P3 Pro will soon be sold for half the price of the P4  with the same video performance. Same for the batteries, the DJI smart batteries are known to be pricy ($150 each) and I expect a drop on the P3 batteries as it happened with the P2 when the P3 came out. Overall it will compensate the few minutes of additional flight time of the P4.

Then there is the 1080 / 120, but let's see how it performs. These high frame rate mode are usually very bad in term of moire and aliasing (eg GoPro 4).

Last, the real deal for me is the dual IMU that may help to avoid the DJI's infamous "fly away". But again, I prefer to save money and throw $250 in a full parachute kit with automatic deployment such as the Mars Lite and Mayday board that will ensure better safety for any drone malfunction, not just IMU/compass/GPS.

Overall, IMHO, I would say, buy a discounted P3 Pro with a bunch of batteries if you don't care about all the bell and whistle auto flight modes. You'll get the same IQ at a very competitive price.

Shoot with my P3P

 

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13 minutes ago, OliKMIA said:

 

 

 

OliKMIA's video really highlights the problem of these types of low-end, fixed-lens drone cams.

Too much is in focus, too much movement. Trying to stuff too much information into a tiny online codec. The end product falls apart, even hosted on vimeo.

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8 minutes ago, andrgl said:

 

OliKMIA's video really highlights the problem of these types of low-end drone cams.

Too much is in focus and the codec falls apart.

It's just me who suck at grading and color correction ! Of course the 8 bits doesn't help neither. I could also have done a better job in post with the sharpness for sure.


But I really think the Phantom is a great product for the price. Considering you'll soon find a P3Pro for $800-900 I wouldn't be too picky. For the price of an entry level APS-C body or mid range lens, you got a full ready to fly kit with a 4K camera that fit in a backpack. You can't expect L grade optic and Red/Arri raw quality for this price.

For most people, amateur, Indie, real estate and youtube work. That's a very competitive tool.
 

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1 minute ago, OliKMIA said:

It's just me who sucks at grading and color correction ! Of course the 8 bits doesn't help neither. I could also have done a better job in post with the sharpness for sure.

I think your grading is awesome and the camera moves are sweet. The codec dying is just part and parcel with having everything in focus. (And to be honest, the video consumer usually doesn't even notice.)

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5 minutes ago, andrgl said:

I think your grading is awesome and the camera moves are sweet. The codec dying is just part and parcel with having everything in focus.

Thanks. I hear you but for more advanced work there is the Inspire with X5 (m43 sensor and interchangeable lens) and X5R (X5 with Raw mode). But they are out of reach for my budget but most importantly, too big and heavy for my style of shooting (travel light, must fit in overhead bin).


For the focus, most of the time in aerial video, it's set to infinity anyway. What do you think ?

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5 hours ago, Franz Schuier said:

Same sensor as the phantom 3, so the 3DR solo with a GoPro is still the better option. I shot a lot with the phantom 3 and as amazing as it is (especially the EOU), the sensor leaves a lot to be desired when compared to a GoPro 4.

I've been looking at drones and came to the same conclusion. Then I read the reviews for 3DR on Amazon. 20 pages or so of that made me hold off on a 3DR. Have you used a 3DR? What did you think of it?

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The Inspire 1 Pro/Zenmuse X5 has been really disappointing.  The flickering and poor codec leave a lot to be desired (image quality wise).  It is one of the worst looking 4K images I have seen out of any camera and DJI does nothing to fix it.  Now they announce a new drone and seem content to let current customers eat the mistake that was the X5.

 

Hoping I'm wrong and they get it right via firmware and then knock it out of the park with the X5R because THAT is the camera I am really keeping my eye on.  Zenmuse X5R on a drone and then the OSMO?  Sign me up.

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The inspire, even with the X5 m43 sensor and lens stills tops at 60mbps in video which is very limited in 4k.

The 3DR solo is a bit overweight and lack power compared to the P3/I1 (the IRIS had the same problem). In term of price, and weight, once you add the gimbal and GoPro 4 it's something between the P3 and I1. The image quality is a bit better than the X3 cam but there still this ugly fish-eye and very limited camera settings control unlike DJI drone where you can change the ISO, shutter and WB in real time. The fligh controller however us much better, thanks to 3DR experience with the Pixhawk.

Last year, Yuneec received something like $70 million from Intel, they are trying to catch up with DJI and I  must admit that the last Q500 is way better than the previous product they launched.

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I agree... the camera system is still poor.... good for learning to fly or make small inserts. The lack of dual operator configuration or independent camera management (like the Inspire1 does) is too big limitation for professional works. Shots like these are impossibile with P4.

 

 

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That voiceover...

As a current P3P owner, I can't get excited about anything other than the dual IMU/Compass. The camera is fine now for what it is, but really needs some kind of hack or something as the footage gets very crunchy after ISO400. Stopping down aperture would be nice, as well as a better LOG profile.

I see absolutely no use for 120fps for a wide aerial shot. I never even use 60fps as it is. 45mph sounds nice, but not sure how often that'd actually be needed. Object avoidance and object tracking sounds cool but if you're a good pilot it's not really critical.

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