Last week during my Indiegogo Specials I covered the Kudrone from Ruiven, the only time, so far, I had recommended a drone for travellers. This was due to its great entry price, easy controllers and attractive specs.
Just a week later I’m back with another drone, but this time it is from, arguably, the market leaders in professional Ariel photography, DJI.
Previously, the DJI line-up of drones began at $1000, heavily loaded towards the more power users of drones and not something most of us would happily take with us on our travels.
The Spark, is DJI’s attempt at giving everyone the opportunity to improve their photos and video footage in a way only a drone can! But this is not a cut price, low feature device just trading off the DJI name! It has all of DJI’s signature technologies…. and they will blow you away!
There is an optional smart controller you can purchase to control this mini drone. There are also the DJI goggles. You will not need either of these though. Your smartphone can act as a controller and view finder via the DJI App (Android | iOS), when needed, but most of us, well, we be controlling it just by hand gestures!
Launching the Spark from the palm of your hand, it takes a facial scan using its FaceAware program. Now the Spark will be hovering unaided just in front of you waiting for a command.
Using the Palm of your hand you can now command the Spark to move into your desired position. Then create a frame shape with your hands for the best selfie you’ll ever take! Waving both hands tells Spark you are finished and wish it to return.
Again, with Facial recognition, it will return to the original position it took off from, waiting for your palm. Place your palm out underneath and it will land and power down. THAT SIMPLE!! (DJI do recommend purchasing and using the propeller guards when using these functions).
Just because this is DJI’s entry level drone, you will not be lacking any specs for your money. Despite being slightly bigger than your hand the Spark has enough power for 16 minutes of flight time, or 15mins just hovering. It can travel at 31 mph when in sport mode and can ascend/descend at 9.8ft per second reaching up to 26ft above you.
All of your video and images are captured on a 12mp sensor, can provide shallow depth of field effect to your images and has several still photo modes; Single shot, Burst and Interval. The video recording is saved in MP4 format for easy sharing across devices and social platforms. All of which can be stored to a Micro SD card, up to 64gb.
The vision sensor means Spark will automatically avoid obstacles up to 16 ft (5 m) in front of it. The maximum speed at which Spark is able to sense obstacles is 3 m/s, so you don’t need to worry about any crashes when making use of the TapFly control.
DJI Smartphone App
As mentioned the Spark also comes with a free to download app for Android and iOS devices. This serves several purposes.
Firstly, it can be your controller for the drone. Giving you an inflight view finder of what the Spark is capturing allows you to create a cinematic masterpiece from the sky!
Then whilst in controller mode the app provides status feedback on the Spark. You can pull an overlay display over the view finder to see the remaining battery power and remaining flight time. It will also alert you if, by chance, your Spark gets close to areas of concern, such as airports, using the GEO system.
Finally, the DJI app provides you with an editing suite to edit and enhance your photos and videos before helping you share them across social platforms.
The Spark will be available in:
- Alpine White
- Sky Blue
- Meadow Green
- Lava Red
- Sunrise Yellow
All are now open for preorder with the Alpine White due to start shipping on June 15th and the other four around June 30th.