Phantom used as a hand held camera

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#1
As the Phantom has a gimbal I'm thinking there are occasions when I could use it as a hand held camera. However, would the motors burn out if the props are not connected?

I could attach the tablet to the landing gear and just have the RC clipped to my waist, or perhaps someone may have other suggestions.

Should the UK have a knee jerk reaction to the Gatwick and Heathrow Airports passenger disruption and ban drones, or insist on a commercial drone test course, then there would probably be many 4K Drones come onto the market at give away prices.
 
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#3
As the Phantom has a gimbal I'm thinking there are occasions when I could use it as a hand held camera. However, would the motors burn out if the props are not connected?

I could attach the tablet to the landing gear and just have the RC clipped to my waist, or perhaps someone may have other suggestions.

Should the UK have a knee jerk reaction to the Gatwick and Heathrow Airports passenger disruption and ban drones, or insist on a commercial drone test course, then there would probably be many 4K Drones come onto the market at give away prices.
As Rootman mentioned, the props don't need to run in order to take pictures or video. However, it would be incredibly bulky and cumbersome. I also think you wouldn't get quite the cinematic results you would expect because you would generally be doing much more panning (yaw) when filming handheld as opposed to aerial.

I think you would be much better off to get an Osmo. The Osmo Pocket is incredibly compact. The older Osmo and Osmo+ can be picked up at a discount now and would work better than carrying around a Phantom.

A more expensive option would be to get an Inspire and Osmo, so you can use the camera with both.
 
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#4
Thanks for those answers:
I know the camera works without props, but as there is no downward wind which I'm presuming may be required to cool the motors, does anyone know for definite if long term running without props does cause damage to the motors.

I have used it as a hand held (with props) but it can be dangerous in certain circumstances.
 
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#5
Thanks for those answers:
I know the camera works without props, but as there is no downward wind which I'm presuming may be required to cool the motors, does anyone know for definite if long term running without props does cause damage to the motors.

I have used it as a hand held (with props) but it can be dangerous in certain circumstances.
If the props are not attached and the motors are not spinning then there is no danger of the motors overheating.

On the other hand, there may be a very real danger of the gimbal circuitry overheating. With the Phantom 3 Pro this has happened to people during firmware updates.

I would never use it as a camera with props attached and spinning! That is just asking for trouble.
 
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#6
Thanks PhantomFandom. I do feel a bit of a dope because I should have realised the camera should work without the motors running, but then by asking I have found out about a possible gimbal circuitry issue.

Also thanks to JMFinch.
 
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#7
No need to turn the motors on at all to take pictures and video. Remove the front props to keep them out of the shots. Because of the P3P and P4P's wide angle lenses I used mine for shooting an annual indoor event. Youth in Harmony, where high school barbershop quartets were being coached in very small rooms. The Photos turned out great. In previous years I had to shoot two photos of the quartets with my DSLR and later stitch them together in Photoshop to get all four quartet members in the same photo. I did not experience any gimbal problems with either phantom but won't say it can't happen.
 
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#8
Meridklt: Your main question has been answered. Using the drone as a handheld camera - with the motors off - isn't as easy as it sounds and the results can be disappointing. There are better options unless you have no choice.

I'm British, living in Sussex when not here in South Africa. The UK Government aren't going to knee-jerk into any major clamp down on drones. As you'll know, the regulations were already set to change in 2019 and there will be a few legislative additions such as increasing the size of no-fly zones around airports as a consequence of the recent disruption. What has already happened is the UK airports have since invested in anti-drone technology, with Gatwick leading the way with £5 million of gear soon after the 36-hour shutdown. So, no, there's no realistic chance of 4K drones being sold en masse at giveaway prices.
 

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