By: Todd Winner and Michael Zeigler
We had been looking into purchasing a drone for some time now. We wanted take advantage of the incredible scenery available to us when out on the water for a day of diving. The DJI Phantom 4 seemed to fit all of the right requirements without the need to purchase additional gear. Simply hook up an iPhone or iPad and you are ready to start flying!
We were told the Phantom 4 was easy to fly. That’s a bit of an understatement since it practically flies itself! Take-offs and landings are simple with either manual or automated controls. Anytime you take your fingers off the control sticks the Phantom 4 will hover with built-in GPS and vision positioning. This gives you time to think and make adjustments without worrying about keeping the aircraft in the sky. It even has front obstacle sensors to help you avoid running into things. Those features along with smart flying functions like “Tapfly” and “Activetrack” make the Phantom 4 a perfect drone for beginner to expert.
The built in camera is amazing! Its integrated gimbal reduces unwanted vibration and movement in flight. Capture 4K video at 24 or 30fps and Full HD 1080P at up to 120fps for silky smooth slow motion. There are a total of 10 color profiles including Cine-D and D-Log to help you achieve the look you’re after. 12 megapixiel still images can be captured in Adobe DNG-RAW, or JPEG.
Although the Phantom 4 is pretty much ready to go out of the box there are a few accessories that may make flying and filming more enjoyable. The GPC case is a must if you are going to be out on a boat. ND and CP filters are available from Polar Pro and extra intelligent flight batteries give you more flights without charging in-between.
Stay tuned for our next review which includes video!
Todd Winner is a contributor, instructor, and trip leader for Samy’s Underwater Photo & Video and has over 20 years of experience in underwater still and broadcast video. To see more of Todd’s work please go to www.toddwinner.com. For the latest information on workshops and trips, sign up for our newsletter.
Michael Zeigler is a contributor, instructor, and trip leader for Samy’s Underwater Photo & Video, as well as an AAUS Scientific Diver. More of Michael’s underwater photography can be seen at www.seainfocus.com. For the latest information on workshops and trips, sign up for our newsletter.