New mailing list for blog post

New mailing list for blog posts 🙂

I made this mailing list just for testing, it’s using mailchimp and you can exclude yourself at any time.

Basically you will get email always when I post something. Let me know if there is a problem.

Testing Dji Phantom – first flights

I managed to get version one phantom to test at weekend and big thanks from that goes to Markus

Phantom
Phantom

This is really impressive device and several other person noticed it also while I was flying with it.

I have aviation license also thus made me pretty easy to fly it, but I would say that it will be easy to learn anyway. Actually biggest problem that I had was that the controls was different than I used to fly when I was a kid and also the controlling is bit different than with the airplane. This actually made me making all the time corrections based on earlier experience. So if I would buy this, most likely would directly go to configuration software and hopefully be able to change it. In short when you tilt the plane, it also starts turning around, when you tilt Phantom, it just moves sideways. 🙂

So what did I try. First I went to our aviation hobby club airport that is pretty empty during winter times, and I would suggest you to go also some place where you have plenty of room to practice. This was Dji phantom version one so the flight time is officially 10-15 minutes, but I only got something like 10 minutes. Of course the winter time had something to do with it. So when you are practicing that it’s about one hour charging and 10 minutes flying. Dji phantom 2 specification says that flight time is 25 minutes so that makes big difference. So this would be my suggestion to go with version 2, only the flight time is reason enough.

Lumia 1020 with Phantom
Lumia 1020 with Phantom

First I wanted to test with my mobile phone that what happens and selected time lapse testing app to take pictures every second.

Dji Phantom with Lumia 1020
Dji Phantom with Lumia 1020

Most of the pictures were blurry and that is the only picture that is sharp at least somewhat. The reason is that those four motor was just shaking a lot the phone. Also the attachment was not that good. I did figure out a better way to attach it but it was still not enough as the camera grip screw position is to far from the lens. I have heard that there is nowdays something like Beast Grip, but I have not been able to test one.

How to attach 3/4 screw
How to attach 3/4 screw

So on went to Lumia and here comes to GoPro. The Phantom is clearly designed into GoPro as that works best. It still need the ZenMuse H3-2D stabilizer, as you can see from my video that it CLEARLY needs it.

Dji Phantom with GoPro
Dji Phantom with GoPro

I also managed to generate panorama from the timelapse pictures that I took. This is from the house I grew up.

Panorama from GoPro timelapse pics(3)
Panorama from GoPro timelapse pics(3)

For the video, I really tried to stabilize it in Premiere pro CS6 and After Effects CS6 but didn’t managed to fix it. This shows clearly to me that ZenMuse H3-2D is really a must for the Phantom even I haven’t have chance to test it. You can actually get pretty nice pictures with it still so if you are only into pictures, you might be good to go with only Phantom even I would still go with the version 2.

I tried to attach also my Olympus OM-D E-M1 and kit lens into Phantom but that was too heavy. Phantom only managed to lift of for about meter over the ground. Maybe with some lighter lens it would be still possible. I would still go with some sports camera or similar as you break the camera very easily. It only need one mistake.

Conclusion:
Dji Phantom is amazing device, as a pilot and photographer, this is just what I need when not been able to fly. Only wind makes more difficult but you can still fly in pretty bad weather. I still would go to version 2 and Zen Muse combination, but you can have lot of fun with the version 1 too. Just be careful with the children. Everyone want one, at least from my experience 🙂

Here is the video, music is inspired from La Donna Del Lago – Opera by The Royal Opera, that I was watching today. Please do note also that this was done in pretty windy environment so camera shake is can’t be avoided.

My DJi Phantom first flying – test from Juhani Väihkönen on Vimeo.