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The World's Most Popular Drone Just Got An Upgrade

But it’s still very expensive…

Michael Cruickshank
The World's Most Popular Drone Just Got An Upgrade© 2023 DJI

Hong Kong drone company DJI’s Phantom 2+ is by almost all counts the best quadrocopter drone on the market. It combines GPS enabled autonomy with stable camera gimbals and easy-to-use controls in order to bring professional-level aerial photography to even inexperienced users. For this reason, the company’s next product would indeed have to be amazing to surpass it.

But yet surpass it they have. DJI has announced today their latest quadrocopter drone - the DJI Inspire 1 - and it may completely change the game when it comes to aerial photography. This device combines a high tech form, with amazing camera abilities, innovative set up and of course easy to use controls, making it something with endless amounts of potential.

Image: © 2014 DJI

In terms of form, the Inspire 1 is a sight to behold. Its sleek, menacing look makes it give off an air of speed and futuristic technology. With a bone white, aerodynamic case, the drone looks like something out popular video games like Portal or Deux Ex. The is further by its transforming shape whereby the rotor blades change position mid flight to allow unobstructed full 360 degree photography.

While the form is indeed cool, what everyone cares about is its photographic abilities, and in this suite it doesn’t let us down. The new detachable camera module can take video and still footage at up to 4K at 30fps or Full HD at 60fps, making it on par with the most advanced optics used in film. Furthermore, the camera can be individually controlled by a second pilot, enabling a much greater level of detail and allowing a user to easily get the perfect shot.

Flight-wise the Inspire 1 carries on much of the legacy of the Phantom 2+, in that it continues to be incredibly easy to use. As well as having a simple controller system, the new drone also broadcasts a real-time HD video feed, enabling a user to see exactly what the drone sees. Additionally, new autonomous mapping features allow the drone to fly with such complete accuracy that its makers claim it can be even used for filming indoors!

The one downside of course is the price. At a minimum of $2900, this thing doesn’t come cheap. This being said, when you take into account the professional-level features, the drone is very well priced against its direct competition, which is often 2 to 3 times more expensive. 

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