Photo by Compudemano / CC BY 2.0
The DJI Phantom drone is one of the more popular brands of quadcopters on the market today, and is a well-known name brand that all enthusiasts are familiar with.
The DJI Phantom drone’s casing is enclosed in a sleek and shiny white plastic finish, with red striped highlights. There are two sturdy supports for your drone to land safely on the ground. Green LED lights will help you to see your drone in low lighting conditions or at night. It looks great in the air, or on the shelf.
The DJI Phantom drone is packed full of features, so that a beginner or a flying pro will both be able to fly the drone, and have a great time outdoors in the process. There are software updates you can add, as well as special attachments and design features.
The DJI Phantom drone is fully supported, with a website full of support manuals and flying instructions. You may wish to add a video camera, so you can experience all that this great flying drone has to offer.
There are many flight videos that you can view, so you can see for yourself that spending a bit extra on the best drone on the market is worth your time and money.
The Quadcopter DJI Phantom
Just what is a quadcopter? It’s an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), or more specifically, an unmanned helicopter, that is operated via remote control. A flying drone can be used as a toy, or for commercial purposes, such filming video for real estate websites.
The military even uses UAVs for spy missions. The quadcopter has four rotors or rotating blades, which allow it to fly and to stay aloft in the air. The remote control unit can be a handheld device, or it can be a software app that can be used on a smart phone or other type of device.
Quadcopters can be controlled through the use of a separate radio controller, or with an app on a smart phone, such as iPhone, Android, Galaxy, tablet, or other smart device.
The DJI Phantom drone is a popular choice for R/C hobbyists, sporting enthusiasts, and new or pro filmmakers. It’s perfect for capturing professional quality video footage, that can both be used to share with friends, or for professional businesses. Many real estate brokers and travel firms already use the DJI Phantom Drone as part of their business tool kit.
The DJI Phantom drone is well-built, and promises to be trouble-free. Its advanced technology allow it to remain in the air, even if the operator is a novice, and not sure what they’re doing. There are also plenty of manual controls, so if a pro operator wants to take over most of the controls, then they can also do so.
A DJI Phantom drone will run you around $500 for a basic setup, and a few hundred more for a camera, and the attachments. There are also optional replacements such as blades and batteries, in case the originals wear out. The DJI Phantom can also be customized with special blades and wraps, to make it your own.
Best Features of the DJI Phantom Drone
It’s easy to learn how to fly the DJI Phantom drone, right out of the box. You don’t need to be an R/C pro. If you’ve never even had a chance to fly a remote controlled device before, you can quickly learn how to fly the DJI Phantom with a few hours of practice.
It’s a great choice for newbies who have never flown an R/C device before. There are also plenty of video tutorials and manuals to help you along. You can look these up on the manufacturer’s website.
All you have to do is attach the blades and the propellers and landing gear, and charge up the batteries. It has a built-in transmitter, so the Phantom can talk to your iPhone or smart phone. Its intelligent orientation control will correct itself in the air, in case you’re a bit clumsy at the controls.
If you’re tired at the end of the flight, there’s no need to steer your DJI Phantom drone back home manually, an automatic back home navigation control will return your drone back to its original starting position.
The internal autopilot will return the drone and use its internal GPS to find its starting position. This is also a great feature to have once it starts getting dark outside, and you don’t want to worry about flying your drone into trees or buildings, in order to bring it back to you.
The DJI Phantom drone can be used with video. There is a GoPro camera mount, where you can attach your own video camera or buy one of the recommended ones such as the DJI Zenmuse. A convenient GoPro flip setting will help with those flying moves when your drone is upside down, and offers super stable video images.
The transmitter range will allow you to fly your drone out to distances of 980 feet, or 300 meters. Unfortunately there’s no way to watch live streaming video on your iPhone or other smart device, as it could interfere with the app’s controls.
But there may be a solution down the road for the manufacturer to fix, so at least your friends or family can watch live streaming video from their devices, while you operate the controls from your own phone app controls.
The DJI Phantom is able to be flown through the air with an advanced GPS positioning system, that compensates for light wind, so you won’t be struggling trying to maintain a safe position. There is a built-in fail safe function so that if your connection to the Phantom’s transmitter is lost, it can be automatically configured to fly to and land at its original take-off position. The DJI Phantom can fly at a maximum speed of 22 miles per hour, or ten meters per second.
How to Fly DJI Phantom
The DJI Phantom is ready to fly right out of the box. Assembly is minimal, simply attaching the blades and landing gear. Simply charge up the battery, and any other external replacement batteries, and go. There’s no need to do any tweaking of settings, as those have all been factory pre-set for you.
There are quick and easy instructions on how to control the drone, and get it up in the air. It’s recommended to only be used for outdoor flight, never indoors. People should be at least 18 years of age to fly the DJI Phantom, or have major supervision during operation.
It’s easy to learn to fly the Phantom drone. To get started in flying the DJI Phantom drone, hold the left joystick to the lower right, while holding the right joystick to the lower left. Each joystick needs to be pointed downwards and towards each other.
From here, you’ll feel your Phantom’s motors starting up, and the rotors will start turning. You can then return both joysticks to their original starting positions. Next, you can then gently and slowly power up the motors for take-off into the air.
You’re now flying your brand new DJI Phantom drone! To stop the motors, simply hold the left joystick all the way to the bottom. There are manuals on the manufacturer’s website, or on the Amazon site to provide more tips on how to successfully fly your DJI Phantom drone in the air.
DJI Phantom Test
If you’re curious as to what kind of video you can record from your DJI Phantom drone, there are several videos online of DJI Phantom test flights. The manufacturer has a few videos online, as well as many R/C hobbyists have posted their own videos online at Youtube.
We have viewed many videos, and analyzed many for our reader’s enjoyment. Once you get the hang of how the DJI Phantom runs, you can add your own video camera, then download and edit videos to your computer. The best ones can be uploaded to Youtube, so that they can be shared with family and friends.
This video shows some of the capabilities of the DJI Phantom drone, and how it can record beautiful images of the neighboring scenery. It’s a great demo of how recording video from a flying drone is different than recording video from the ground.
It’ll give you some ideas as to what types of video it can record, and its usages for commercial products, such as real estate video, travel businesses, etc.
Here’s another video that demonstrates some of the breathtaking views you can capture from the air, that you won’t be able to take in from the ground. Plus, it’s a great demonstration on the speed of flight, and how fast the DJI Phantom can go through the air.
You’d never be able to replicate these images solely through a handheld video camera on the ground.
DJI Phantom Software
The DJI Phantom software app will work on iPhone, Android, and other smart devices. You can download the software from the manufacturer’s website, or from the Apple website, or iTunes store. Be sure to stay on top of updates and bug fixes, so that you can get the most out of your DJI Phantom drone.
It’s possible to configure the DJI Phantom’s high tech Naza-M autopilot system with some advanced parameters. You’ll need to connect your DJI Phantom to your computer through the USB port, and download a separate set of software. You can get the Naza-M update here.
The manufacturer has several documents available to help you to learn how to fly your DJI Phantom, and get the most of of your new toy. Check out the user manuals here, as well as the standard software from the manufacturer’s website:
It’s also possible to update your DJI Phantom drone. If you want to add a video camera, you can attach it to the GoPro, with the additional purchase of camera and screw attachment. If you find your battery draining down too fast, it may be time to buy a replacement.
You can also purchase additional battery packs, charge them up at home, and take with you. This will allow for additional flying time on the field, as you can swap them out as needed. You may wish to buy additional SanDisk memory cards, so you can record more video. If one card fills up, switch it out for another.
Since, the DJI Phantom doesn’t provide streaming video to your iPhone or other smart device, you’ll want to have plenty of storage capability, so you can go home and enjoy watching all the cool video that you recorded with your DJI Phantom drone.
You may wish to purchase DJI Phantom prop guards, which are available in a white plastic finish. You can purchase an anti-vibration kit as well. You can buy new blades, or fancy blades to provide a bit of customization to your DJI Phantom drone. Special skin wraps can also be purchased, to provide a bit of decoration.
The DJI Phantom drone will provide hours of fun for you and your family. Head out to the park, or meet up with your local R/C hobby enthusiasts, and show off what your DJI Phantom drone can do in the air.