During their highly anticipated 'Control / Create' event in LA, DJI has announced the Inspire 2 / Phantom 4 Pro and Pro+ quadcopters. Here's everything we know about these exciting new products so far.
NOTE:We will continue to update this blog across the week to ensure it remains up to date and features everything you need to know about the new product including Specs, Images and Insights from our team.
What You Need to Know
Here's everything you need to know about these three awesome quadcopters:
DJI Inspire 2
The Inspire 2 is more powerful than its predecessor. It has a new magnesium-aluminium body which increases robustness while reducing weight. It has a top speed of 58mph (accelerating to 50mph in 5 secs), and its battery life is enough for 25mins of flight time. The Inspire 2 has a self-heating dual-battery system that can keep the drone flying even in frigid temperatures and can reach 16,400ft above sea level, although, there isn't much chance of that with current regulations.
What's most impressive though, is that the Inspire 2 is DJI's first drone to feature two cameras. There's the main camera for capturing footage, which is held underneath on a three-axis gimbal. The Inspire 2’s legs lift up just like the Inspire 1's, so they won’t get in the way of your footage, and it's free to rotate 360 degrees. In addition, there is also a front-mounted two-axis camera, allowing the pilot to always see where the drone is facing. The system is designed for dual operators: one to fly and one to frame the action, each with their own live video feed.
If you’re choosing to fly alone, the Inspire 2 helps achieve some tougher shots through computer vision and autonomous navigation. Like the Phantom 4 and Mavic Pro, the Inspire 2 now has obstacle avoidance. Vision sensors are located on the front and bottom of the aircraft, and infrared sensors are sat on top. There's also the computer vision system and automatic subject tracking you'll recognise from the Phantom 4 and Mavic Pro. This means you can lock onto a subject and the camera will rotate to keep them in frame.
DJI has designed the Inspire 2 to satisfy professional filmmakers. They call it CineCore 2.0 and it captures 5.2K video at a 4.2Gbps bitrate. To handle all that data, the Inspire 2 has added an onboard SSD.
The Inspire 2 is available with the new Zenmuse X4S or X5S camera. The latter features a micro 4/3 sensor and supports 10 different lenses, including zoom. And the system supports pro video compression formats including CinemaDNG and Apple ProRes. For photographers there is also DNG RAW mode for 30MP stills. It's also able to stream video in broadcast-quality formats which is handy for users such as news crews.
Phantom 4 Pro (and Pro+)
It's official, the next generation of the Phantom range is here.
First off, let's take a look at the camera specs. Stills are recorded at 20MP in JPG or Raw DNG, with video available up to 4K quality at 60fps. 30 and 24fps shooting rates are also available. The camera also adds aperture control and features a mechanical shutter, eliminating the rolling shutter effect you sometimes get from electrical alternatives. Footage is compressed at 100Mbps using H.265 compression, up from the H.264 60Mbps format offered by the Phantom 4.
The twist-and-lock rotors are still here and the battery capacity has increased. You'll get an extra 2mins of flight time from the Pro, giving you approx 30mins. Realistically, expect the Phantom 4 Pro to fly for 24 or 25mins.
The front obstacle avoidance sensors have been replicated on the rear, and now there are both vision and infrared sensors on the sides. The downward-facing VPS is still included, which means that the the Phantom 4 Pro has almost 360 degrees of obstacle avoidance and enhanced positioning. Front and rear sensors can detect obstacles 98ft and the side sensors at 23ft.
The Phantom 4 Pro can fly at up to 31mph with obstacle avoidance enabled, so you can benefit from high-speed shots in any direction, without worrying that you'll crash your drone. You can also switch to 'Sport' mode for faster flight, but you'll need to be very careful as there's no sort of obstacle detection available when you reach speeds of up to 45mph.
Left: Phantom 4 Pro+ controller Right: Phantom 4 Pro controller
The standard remote control is very similar to that of the Phantom 4, with a clip to hold your smartphone or tablet. But now there's an option for pilots who prefer not to use their mobile device. The Pro+ comes with a remote featuring an integrated tablet which has been preloaded with the DJI Go app which the company claim is suitable for use even in sunny conditions. The Pro+ remote features a microSD card slot, as well as a GPS and a mini HDMI output port for live broadcasting.
While the Phantom 4 Pro has all the modes you'll recognise from its predecessor, there are also some new and enhanced features. 'Narrow Sensing' makes it possible to fly through tight environments and there's also a 'Draw' mode, which lets you draw a line path on a map for the Pro to follow.
ActiveTrack has also been enhanced so that it can work backward or sideways. Likewise, TapFly lets you fly backwards now and supports 'Free' mode, which rotates the aircraft as it moves along its path, without changing flight direction.
See below for what we consider to be the key information from DJI's Inspire 2 / Phantom 4 Pro product launch.
DJI Inspire 2
Flight time: 25-27mins
Control range: 7km
Video resolution 5.2K/4K
Sensory range: 30M
Live view: 1080p
DJI Phantom 4 Pro
1″ 20MP sensor capable of 4K/60fps & 14fps Stills
H.264 and H.265 Encoding
Infrared sensing system
4.3mi/7km transmission range
30min flight time
'Draw' mode waypoint control
ActiveTrack settings include:
Phantom 4 Pro+
Included 5.5″ 1080p Display with 1000 cd/m2 brightness
Integration of display and DJI GO app reduces video lag
Built-in HDMI Port, microSD card slot, microphone, embedded loudspeaker and Wi-Fi connection allowing images to be edited and shared instantly
You need a drone license when you are flying as a commercial drone pilot, ie when you are using your drone for work and money-making purposes. This means, in most cases, you will need to sit the FAA Part 107 test.
You do not need a drone license when you are flying as a hobby and for purely recreational purposes. However, you will need to operate by strict rules. There are plans to introduce the requirement for hobbyists to pass an online aeronautical knowledge and safety test.