Just Announced: DJI Phantom 4 Quadcopter, Bringing Auto-Flight to the Masses
DJI have announced their newest professional level drone recording platform, The DJI Phantom 4 Quadcopter.
Automation is the overwhelming theme in the Phantom 4, with new features bringing a level of hands-off piloting, and in-flight safety that simply has not been seen before on a consumer level drone.
The Phantom 4 uses five cameras and two ultrasonic sensors to see the environment around it. This information is then processed by the drone’s onboard vision software, creating a 3D model of the world around the drone, and allowing it to make autonomous flight adjustments accordingly. The Phantom 4 will automatically avoid collisions by making altitude, speed, and course corrections, and safely bring its self to a hover if unavoidable danger is detected. More advanced pilots can toggle these new safety features, but for us mere mortals they can be active at all times whilst operating.
DJI has also introduced a technology which it cals ‘TapFly’. TapFly gives users the option to fly the drone without having to use the twin-stick controller, simply set a maximum distance that the drone is allowed to travel, take off, and tap the live image feed to fly the drone towards the horizon in the chosen direction.
The second major new feature to be introduced in the Phantom 4 platform is so called ‘ActiveTrack’. By tracing a circle around a subject, the Phantom 4 is able to create a 3D model of the object, or person which it can then use to smoothly track the subject whilst keeping it firmly in frame. Combined with the new collision avoidance features, the Phantom 4 can now accurately track a subject and avoid obstacles simultaneously. These features may well revolutionise the arial filming process for sports such as mountain biking where accurate tracking is often required in environments full of potentially dangerous obstacles.
The main camera housed beneath the Phantom 4 features a 1/2.3 inch 12MP sensor capable of capturing DNG raw files. 4K Video is captured at either DCI 24/25P or UHD 24/25/30P, HD video capture however is possible at a huge 120FPS, giving the possibility of some 5X slow motion action post-editing. The Phantom 4 actually weighs in at 100g heavier than its predecessor, but this is mostly due to a useful increase in battery size from 4480 milliamp hours to 5350 mAh, which should translate to a flight time of 28 minuets per charge.
the Phantom 4 should be available later this month at a price of $1399.00 and although pre-orders aren’t currently live you can check it out at the following Link: