The expected release of the DJI Phantom 3 has come and passed with drone lovers snapping up units to get their hands on the newest version first. Of course, the question of many is whether the DJI Phantom 3 is really worth all the fuss and attention, or is it just a repackaged version of what people already have in earlier models.
Video capabilities of the Phantom 3
First off, the Phantom 3 is going to raise a few eyebrows among the outdoor movie production type who want the capability of drone filming that comes with more expensive units but they don’t want to pay the price tag. There are some changeovers to consider (for example, the control tablet has to use an Android OS, and a different size battery is required for the power source). So what worked for the Phantom 2 will not carry over to the Phantom 3. Welcome to the age of product obsolescence to drive sales; the computer industry has been using this sales trick for years.
Control and design
From a basic user control perspective, the Phantom 3 design did not throw in any new complications. Instead, the makers kept the system straightforward and user-friendly, which is what made the earlier Phantom 2 version so popular to begin with. Even better, the software technology works on the new drone unit up to 1.2 miles away from the user, which is quite a distance when considered in the range of a radius from the user versus just a direct line of travel.
Even better, the Phantom 3 has had a number of features added to it to make the already attractive capabilities even better with additional new accessories and benefits. The first has to do with the video software. Users can now edit and stream out video immediately as it is taken from the drone. This is a big benefit for those who previously had to wait, recover the unit, transfer the filming and then produce it as desired.
As for the actual image capture, the Phantom 3 boasts a 1080p video lens and frame capture on video. For still photo, up to 12 megapixel images are shot. The clarity is extremely sharp, and far better than anything on the market hooked up to a drone before now. All of this work is handled and reflected through a f/2.8 lens assembly with a 94 degree angle of shot producing an extreme amount of detail.
Of course, as any experienced camera person knows, an image is only as good as the camera being kept stable. This is where the magic of the Phantom 3’s drone aerial capacity shines. The built-in stabilization is amazing on how level and unchanged it keeps the connected camera image recording sensors. Because it manages balance from three different directions at once, the drone from Amazon is able to tackle wind and flight changes as they happen regardless of sudden shifts or losses of lift. The effects are so subtle and automatic, a user will never realize how difficult it was with early drones and the challenges of a stable flight with all the minute changes that were involved during flight. The latest technology takes care of it all. Of course, all of this milli-second decision-making takes a lot of processor power, and that’s managed by the drone’s main controller, its central brain while the mechanics are applied instantly with a 6-axis gyroscope and related equipment.
Flight pattern, GPS and more
Additional benefits include easy tracking with built-in GPS and GLONASS in one assembly, as well as far faster ability to lock into tracking satellites when in motion. The ability to retrace previous starting points and flight patterns is extremely easy as well, especially with the built in memory features of the control software and integration with mapping software.
With more equipment and more sensors, the Phantom 3 is going to have a bit more weight on it, which some were concerned would slow down the drone in the air. In reality, the motor speed is not just sufficient, it’s also adjusted and controlled automatically for changes with the built-in Electronic speed Controllers, a mechanical connection of the Main Controller to the flight fans and propellers. The power produced is not just for hovering; it moves the unit amazingly fast as well.
I really enjoyed my time with the DJI phantom 3 and would recommend it to anyone looking for a solid drone with a ton of features for a relatively low price. When you add up all the technology that has gone into making the Phantom, it certainly looks like the bargain of the decade.