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Looking for my first drone

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by confused_chimp, Feb 20, 2015.

  1. confused_chimp

    Feb 20, 2015
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    Hi all
    I'm looking to get my first drone and looking for some advice.

    I've been looking at the phantom 2 vs the inspire. Both seem to have their advantages, but in my searching I also found the 3d robotics iris+ and really like it’s ability to auto follow the user, assuming it works as well as advertised.
    Can anyone tell me if either the phantom or the inspire can do that?

    Also I'm interested in filming over water and I believe you can get a waterproof case for the phantom, can you get a waterproof housing for the inspire? Or is it waterproof by default?

    I have several GoPro cameras and intend to buy anew one each year as they improve them. Which puts me in 2 minds about drones. I can see advantages of having a separate camera to the drone; you can dismount it and use it by itself, you can upgrade the camera without upgrading the drone. However I can see advantages of having a camera inbuilt; it can be powered by the drones battery, the gimbal is designed specifically for that camera and drone combination and I suspect the video link will be better.

    I'm interested in the possibility of using a drone to do some commercial photography/videography. But at the moment it's all hobby based.
    It will be great to be able to get those wide scenic shots that put context to the subject matter of my projects.

    So just looking for some advice on which drone to consider. And then there's the price…

    Regards and thanks
  2. dptcalvin

    Nov 29, 2014
    Likes Received:
    I have a waterproof transportation case for my Phantom, but I'm unaware of anything that makes that Phantom itself waterproof.

    The Phantom 2 can power the GoPro.

    The H3-3D is designed specifically for the 3 and 3+ and the H4-3D specifically for the 4 Black.

    The ability to keep the drone and just upgrade the gimbal (if needed) and GoPro are what led me to the non-Vision Phantom 2.
  3. syotr

    Jul 30, 2013
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    I would definitely NOT purchase the Inspire for your first quadcopter. Learn to fly on something cheaper, then add the camera.
    I would recommend the Phantom 1.1.1 especially since you already have a GoPro.
    If you are going to be doing a lot of flying over water, you should consider one of the waterproof, floating models.
    Neither the Phantom or Inspire will float.
  4. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Jan 8, 2014
    Likes Received:
    No .. they can't.
    The follow me function is more a gimmick for the selfie crowd than something for serious photographers tool.
    If you're looking at the Iris .. compare its battery life.

    Over water is where you can get some of the best photos. Check my photo website for some examples of what you can do.
    The idea is to film over water - not in it.
    The Phantom and Inspire are the opposite of waterproof and there are no waterproof housings.

    The Inspire is not a good beginners machine. It is expensive, big, heavy and fast.
    It's very easy to write off your investment quickly if you do not have a good understanding of the principles and handling experience.
    The Phantom is a fine craft to learn on.
    Nothing is easier to fly (including cheap "trainer drones" people are sure to recommend.
  5. PhantomFanatic

    Nov 14, 2014
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    USA, GA
    I have seen, here, bright Orange floats for the landing gears. But, when I saw it, my first thought was you would have to be mighty lucky for it to work. More than likely, you would find your Phamtom underwater, with the floats on top of the water. BUT, it would help you find it, so a big plus there.

    Maybe it isn't good etiquette here, but you might want to take a look at the Hobbico Ora. It is supposed to be out in late March. But, a Google will help you find a short video of it at a trade show. Although, it shows a camera, you can also order it with a gimbal for the Hero, from what I heard. It comes with FPV, in an attractive transmitter unit, minus one thing - a sunscreen.
  6. knowonecares

    Dec 11, 2014
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    Long Beach, CA
    I have a P2V+ its awesome, but Id wait if I were to buy again. DJI has opened the doors, I'm going to wait for other companies to learn from DJI-issues and see what they (GoPro Drone) can come up with in the next 12months...just my opinion.
  7. dirkclod

    dirkclod Moderator
    Staff Member

    May 9, 2014
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    Amory Mississippi
    Welcome to the forum confused_chimp :D
  8. GoodnNuff

    Jun 4, 2013
    Likes Received:
    Washington State
    There are a lot of choices out there and they are growing each month. Depends on what your primary interest is - making money from photography work, or just personal enjoyment.
    You say you're interested in filming over water - if you are a boater, water skier, etc., the follow me feature would be useful in filming yourself. As Meta4 says, it is mostly a gimmick for the selfie crowd, but I think every Phantom owner secretly hopes for the day they can do this with their Phantoms (instead of constantly resetting a dynamic home point). I have a couple of boating and biking friends who love their Iris+ and the new Yuneec Q500 because they can film themselves by having the quad follow.
    Both the Iris+ and the Q500 allow you to position the quad at the height, distance and POV (e.g. in front, behind, right side, etc.) you want before initiating the follow me feature. The Iris+ will follow an Android device or the Pebble Watch, the Q500 will only follow its own transmitter. If you're willing to shell out the money for an Inspire, check out the 3D Robotics X8 as well.

    I don't think the Iris+ has quite as smooth a flight as the DJI quads do, at least the videos I've seen don't seem as smooth.
    The Yuneec Q500 Typhoon has incredibly smooth videos - the smoothest I've seen. But the color correction is off IMO, they appear to have had an Instagram filter used to increase color saturation, and the quality isn't as nice as a GoPro. However the Q500 will be introducing a 4K camera this spring (the gimbal/camera unit is a one plug quick connect), and if you buy a Q500 before the enf of this month, the hand held gimbal will be shipped to you for free once you register your quad.
    Another drawback of the Q500 is it's speed - SLOW. 15 MPH top speed out of the box. Both 3 Robotics and Yuneec use open source software and I see on the forums owners are tweaking them to fly faster and have additional flight modes.
    They are pretty cool birds, but you'll never regret buying a Phantom either.
  9. landmannnn

    Jan 18, 2015
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    Coventry and Limoges
    The phantom is pretty much the default choice for the hobbiest, a basic inexpensive platform with a lively aftermarket and a lot of users.
    If you buy one and decide you want more after a few months, you can sell it on for 80 to 90% of the initial purchase price, so little risk involved.

    Inspire .. looks good, but if you want to get serious later on, an octocopter that can carry a dslr is in a different league.
  10. dronehigh

    Sep 22, 2015
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    Meybe consider microcopter as your first drone. Can be useful because of low price
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