Note – we are adding a number of videos on our youtube channel. Most are embedded in this article however the direct link is here.
We also have a “Forum Continuation Thread” where we are posting tips and hints as they are known…and where you can even ask a question and take part in the conversation. Here is the link.
DJI introduced a smaller and lighter camera quadcopter (drone) named Spark on May 24. The Event was held in Grand Central Station in New York City.
Droneflyers.com obtained a pre-production model which we will be testing and flying extensively in the weeks ahead. Here are the very basics as we know them before…and at the time of launch. Xparks should be shipping very soon (Late June, 2017)
Price: $499 for the basic unit – operated by gesture control and/or smartphone.
$699 – for a complete package with Remote Control, Case, Prop Guards, Multiple Battery Charger, etc.
The DJI Spark is a small drone that does not fold – but is smaller and lighter than the Mavic Pro. It contains a 2-axis gimbal capable of 12MP Stills and 1080 Video. The DJI Spark is positioned as a “starter” drone but I’m sure more experienced and creative pilots will be able to use it also due to its size and capabilities. If you just want to order one now – try this link at DJI. Amazon is now taking orders also for Mid-June Delivery – here is a link.
In terms of weight, here is what our little scale read:
Weight – 344 grams with battery and prop guards (12.12 oz.)
305.4 grams with battery – no prop guards – (10.77 oz.)
Battery only – 95.8 grams (3.38 oz)
Flight time is advertised as 16 minutes – this is a maximum without the prop guards, which add quite a bit of weight. Figure on 12 minutes when you are using the prop guards. True flight time (usable) is closer to 13 minutes without prop guards and 10 minutes with. The battery only takes a couple seconds to swap out, so this is not going to be a problem for the close-in work this drone is designed for.
The base unit will sell for $499 and is controlled by “gesture control” (your hands, palms, face, etc.) or a smart device and wireless communication protocol. Advanced control on the smart device is through the DJI GO 4 App and a similar interface as other DJI models – except that the “sticks” show up virtually on the screen when your fingers touch it. The Go App for Spark features a number of Intelligent Flight Modes as per the screenshot below:
Note – there are some fancy moves such as “palm launching” as well as new camera modes and controls – most designed for the “selfie” aspect of this model. For example, a pano mode is included as well as a option to have a shallow depth of field (DJI calls this “Shallowfocus”). Vertical and Horizontal models are included (Landscape and Portrait).
An R/C (Remote) will be available for the Spark – as an extra cost option. This greatly extends the range and height.
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