DJI FPV Drone In-Depth Review: 23 Things To Know
com here and i’ve got 23 things to know about the new dji fpv drone. Now this video is not sponsored by dji or anyone else i’m going to tell you the good, the bad and the ugly about the new dji fpv system. You can go ahead and use the youtube chapters option on the bottom near the video to skip around the chapters and chunks that you want to know more about now before we get into all those new things, a very short 10 second primer, on the difference between An fpv drone and a regular drone now fpv stands for first person view which means that you’re controlling the aircraft, where the goggles there, as opposed to a screen on your controller, beyond that, the differences mostly have to do with the aircraft itself, and it really comes Down to maneuverability and agility, an fpv drone tends to be way more maneuverable. It can go upside down and usually turn much faster and sharper and do all sorts of more interesting, aerobatic type maneuvers than a regular drone can inversely, though it’s also much harder to fly. Typically kind of like learning a different language, now, historically you’re, probably thinking of fpv drones more like the racing realm, but that’s, really not what dji is going for. This one is way too heavy for that sort of thing. Instead of targeting more of the cinematic fpv market, which is what’s pretty much like proliferated youtube over the last year or two and it’s really what i’m gon na focus the majority of this review on, as opposed to sort of the acrobatic flying now, the kit comes With three core parts, you’ve got the drone itself, you’ve got the goggles, and then you have the controller.
The motion controller is not part of the stock kit. That’S extra within the kit, though you do have the drone battery there, as well as the goggle battery and that’s. The first item under new things list is probably the craziest one that you’re going to see when you witness in real life, which is the new emergency brake and hover option. What this means that you’re flying along at full speed and you can one tap a button on the controller to go and stop the drone virtually instantly within, like a couple meters. Here. Look at this video right here: i’m going 100 kilometers an hour, and i hit that button and it stops in just a handful meters not very far at all, and it hovers there by itself. Now. The real goal for this feature is actually going to go ahead and just simply get yourself out of a sticky situation, so you can see here i put the aircraft into a bit of a spin. I just simply tap that button and boom it’s leveled back out again and anytime. You use that emergency brake. It puts it back in the normal mode and not the manual fpv mode and we’ll talk about that in just a second, the idea. Here being that you can take a breather mentally reset without having to pick up all the pieces of the aircraft on the ground and that sort of feature is pretty important when you consider the top speeds of the fpv system.
So the very top speed is 140 kilometers an hour or 87 miles per hour in full manual mode. Then, from there you drop down to sport mode with a wii, 97 kilometers an hour or 60 miles per hour and then below that there is normal mode, which is 50 kilometers an hour or 31 miles per hour within that it can accelerate to 100 kilometers an Hour in two seconds flat: oh hey in a quick note, if you find this video useful or interesting, simply whack that, like button the bottom there, it really helps out this video in the channel. Quite a bit now, as i just mentioned, there are three modes to this. Drone you’ve got your normal mode, which is similar to what you have on a dji mavic air 2, or something like that. You’Ve got your sport mode, which is also most of the dji drones. It increases the speed. It allows more angle, odds from the churns, and then you have manual mode in manual mode on the fpv system is the full fpv mode. You can toggle between these three modes, using the little switch on the back right there very simple, however, out of the box, the manual mode is actually not enabled. So even when you go into manual mode like this, it won’t actually enable it. Instead, you have to go into the goggles into the menu system and enable it there, but even more than that, every time you toggle the manual mode on the controller, you have to do this little controller quiz.
If you will to go ahead and confirm that you actually mean to be in manual mode it’s, a bit of a safety check against accidentally hitting that button and instantly crashing your drone. However, within the manual mode there are actually two fpv modes. The first mode is the default, which is the attitude mode enabled, which means you can’t flip over your drone. So it’s like a protection scheme again to keep you from killing your drone in the very first flight. You can then disable that, and that allows you to invert your drone and do flips and rolls, and whatever else you want, no matter which mode you have, though you always have auto land and auto take off, which means you can go ahead and use the automatic Buttons on the controller itself to get the aircraft up into the air, as well as to land the aircraft in fpv drones landing an aircraft can often be the most complicated thing. So this is just another step. Dji has taken to keep you from killing a drone on the very first flight and, as part of auto land is return to home or rth and that’ll fly the drone back to the same exact point. It took off at keep in mind, though, that while it has obstacle avoidance sensors, it will not avoid obstacles in the rth mode, but you can go hit the stop button anytime. You want, if you’re, watching the goggles and it’s about to hit a tree or whatever the case may be.
The next new feature is cruise control, and this is something that just recently introduced to the mavic air 2 and it’s, pretty sweet for fpv in particular. What it allows you to do is as you’re flying along. You can go and hit this button to start and stop, and it maintains that exact speed the entire time, no matter what else you’re doing from a flying standpoint. I found this super useful when i’m trying to repeat the same maneuver over and over again, especially high speed passes, where i really want to maintain that high speed and focus purely on flying the aircraft, as opposed to dealing with the throttle side of things. So you can see that here in this passage under the bridge there, while it controls things at 100 kilometers an hour underneath this bridge, and i can just focus on flying so sometimes i probably should have focused just a wee bit more because this one attempt right Here i actually clipped the bridge. Listen to this, the kickers i didn’t even notice it equipped the bridge until later on, where i looked at the footage and heard the ting in the audio recordings from both the drone, as well as the fpv goggles. Okay, so let’s talk about some of that camera, jazz right now so 4k, at up to 60 frames per second or 1080p at up to 120 frames per. Second, you can control this from within the goggles. You can also go ahead and set either h264 or h265, as well as having a decent like mode too, for going ahead and doing the color correction afterwards, now it’s worthy to note this camera and the gimbal are designed to be flown at speed.
So if you’re flying level just hovering there you’ll see the props in the camera view once you tilt forward and give it some speed, then the props drop out of you on the photo side, though it’s just jpeg photos and only 8 megapixel photos it’s just using The same 4k image crop. The real key, though, is the stabilization aspects of it. So this one here has a single access gimbal compared to most of the dji drones that have three access cables. This only goes up and down. You can see that it’s like this. There, instead, what they use is dji’s osmo action stabilization. So this is their action camera right here. They basically stuff this inside of that now in the drone, they call it eis or electronic image stabilization versus on the action camera. They call it rocksteady same concept, though you can turn this on and off. If you want to, here is a quick side by side showing on and off in case, you did want to turn it off and stabilize outside of the drone itself later. On still, i found the stabilization very, very good here. One minor note, though, is that the feed that’s sent to your goggles that’s recorded on your goggles on the sd card. There is not image stabilized, so they just send that across at low latency, as opposed to applying any image stabilization to it. The next little feature i’m loving, is auto record on takeoff.
This is really simple. The second aircraft goes in, the air, starts, recording and the second it lands and stops recording. You can choose to record just the drone footage or the drone and the goggles sd card, as well as a backup which is what i choose by default. But this is the first time we’ve seen it on a dji drone, despite being out in the market on other companies drones for quite a while. Now. The next thing to note is the sensors. So in the fpv drone there are two forward sensors and then there are two downwards facing imaging: sensors plus two depth of field sensors. However, these sensors will not stop the aircraft from running into something; instead, they give you warnings so as you’re flying along the goggles you’ll first see a yellow warning when you’re approaching something and then a red warning when it thinks something is dangerous. However, i found that the system is pretty wimpy like it’s it’s way wimpier than i am, which is saying something because i’m a little bit wimpy when it comes to this kind of stuff uh, and so it was, i pretty much had to ignore it most. The time and what’s a little bit more disappointing about the obstacle avoidance here is that there is no option to toggle to simply stop when you get to red like there is on the rest of dji’s product suite and if their goal is to be able to Bridge those two worlds of fpv and non fpv for beginners.
This would seem like something that would be logical to at least have as an option to enable to again keep you from killing a really expensive drone. Speaking of things that are not on this drone it’s any of dji’s, intelligent flight modes or any special modes whatsoever, there is nothing like active track or hyperlapse or waypoints or tripod, or anything like that. Anything that tracks things or follows things or just automated moves orbiting around something. Doesn’T exist here at all. So if you value those things, you’re still going to need to take another drone with you or just fly manual and i think that’s a bit of a lost opportunity, because those are some of the dji’s strongest assets and hopefully we’ll see them incorporated into this drone Or maybe a future drone down the road so that if people are traveling, they can go and take just one drone as opposed to up and take two drones, because i think a lot of people still find value in all those things from tracking to automated shots And whatnot they may want to get to fill in the rest of their entire sequence. Now, despite not having special modes, it does have dji’s air sense. This is something introduced a year or two ago, and it allows you to go ahead and see air traffic around you, like real world planes around you, so as a plane, approaches you’ll see on the goggles, a warning first that there’s a plane in the general of Cindy, i think it’s a couple kilometers out and then once it gets really close to you, uh it’ll go ahead and give you a red warning as well that that aircraft is even closer.
Now. Keep in mind, though, this is only the lateral distance and not the vertical distance. So even when i was sitting there uh thousands of feet below aircraft that were passing way above me, uh, you know more than a dozen miles from the airport. It was triggering those aircraft. Next let’s briefly talk about the goggles. This is the dji fpv version 2 goggles. These came out a couple months ago, so by themselves they aren’t very new. They have two latency levels within them. The first is 120 frames per second at 28 milliseconds and they have a lower latency higher quality option at 60 frames per second at 40 milliseconds uh. In my testing and all of my scenarios, i never lost connectivity. Now i wasn’t trying to fly like five kilometers away because that’s against the rules here, of course, every environment will be different depending on what’s going on out there. So i wouldn’t necessarily convert my area to your area. You’Re, just gon na have to kind of see for yourself uh. The transmission system between all this stuff is using ocusync 3.0, which is the first time dji’s used that platform in their drones. They’Ve also renamed it now to o3, because it sounds cooler. I don’t know why they just did so it’s called o3 it’s got stronger, anti interference. Tech it’s got more antennas inside of it and it’s reduced to latency. Now, if you do lose connection, it’s, not a huge deal, there’s three options: you can do a return to home a hover or a land by default, it’ll go ahead and hover and it’ll also hover into normal mode and not manual mode, also notable that if you Hit your safety limits that you’ve defined, for example, for distance and altitude it’ll toggle into normal mode, so taking you out of manual or sport mode.
On the flip side, this is the new dji fpv remote here, it’s quite different than the original fpv remote. Obviously, it’s much much smaller, uh you’ve got an entire antenna bar up here, like this t bar, if you will at the top. But what you won’t notice is any sort of phone holder on this, which will sound obvious to fpv people, but not so obvious to non fpv people you’ve solely used the goggles to control the drone that’s it. I think that’s also a bit of a lost opportunity, though, because there are many scenarios where, for legal reasons, you may not have a spotter nearby and just need to get some quick shots, and you don’t necessarily need the goggles to be able to put a phone On this, and just use it in a conventional setting would make a lot more sense. You will be able to connect a phone to this uh using the app, but then you don’t have like a place to put it so you’re it’s a little bit awkward on the flip side, literally by the way you can open up these flaps right here and Adjust the controller sensitivity uh, the idea being that you can go ahead and remove the tension, so it acts like a normal fpv controller. Next, we got the new motion – controller that’s, this little joystick looking thing right here: uh it costs an extra 200 bucks, that’s, not included in the kit itself, and the idea is that you use the motion, as the name applies to control the drone.
So you can see me rotating left and right right there uh and if i tilt it up and down it, tilts it up and down and as i press this throttle button, the bottom there it goes, then it controls the drone’s throttle and sends me flying forward. Now, in my testing i was pleasantly surprised. I expected this to be like giant dumpster fire and it wasn’t, and i keep in mind. I come from the realm of like a decade’s worth of drone flying some real world flying all that kind of stuff. So – and i expect this to be like a toy and it wasn’t bad, at least in normal mode, i have not been able to try sport mode or manual mode because they’re not enabling the firmware up until today, hopefully by time this video launches it’ll be enabled, But it’s not yet there today and that to me is probably the biggest opportunity here is to be able to use this to control the drone, as opposed to the joysticks for people that may not have familiarity with typical fpv joystick control. Next, a quickie, the goggles, do have audience mode, just like the previous goggles do this allows you to have multiple people with goggles link up to this goggle, to see what you’re seeing you can also, then pipe it out from the goggles to a phone as well. If you want to go ahead and just see it on the phone or tablet, or something like that in addition like before, you can record osd data as well, which is what you’re seeing right now on the screen.
So you can look at speed and latency all that kind of stuff later on. If you want to the one thing there isn’t, at least as of this very moment, i’m filming the video is the ability to go ahead and record. The entire screen, including the menu overlays and stuff i’d, really appreciate that. I think other people find it valuable as well for teaching on youtube how to fly fpv, but i see everything on the screen exactly what i’m seeing from a goggle perspective. Next dj has released a new simulator that allows you to fly this aircraft virtually before you go and crash it and kill it outside the idea being that you can even buy the goggles if you wanted to, and the controller ahead of time practice a bunch. Dozens of hours and then go outside and fly it without hopefully killing on your first flight next, a quickie here which is swappable canopy, covers this goes and swaps out the clear one right there giving it this beautiful, chroma key green color. I guess look it’s easy to see from far away, but something like this is obviously cheap plastic, which is fine. It does mean, though, that probably see tons of cool third party options out on the interwebs once they get a hold of this mold. To do something super creative on your drone itself, so that brings us to swapping aparts and fixability and that’s. Probably the core concern of most people here is how fixable is this drone and dji says the answer is yeah mostly fixable, now toss on the screen.
Right now in incomplete parts and price list, there are some parts that will be coming but are not yet available. Pricing wise an example being the motors. But so you can see on the list. There are things like the arms bars and the gimbal and the shell, and all that kind of stuff is available, albeit dji. Type prices now in line with fixability, is finding your drone. When you crash it and dji’s got kind of a two parter here, uh as part of quote, find my drone within the goggles itself. You can go into find my drone and it’ll replay the last 30 seconds of footage, and you can pause and play as many times as you want to go ahead and find the exact moment that it crashed and where it crashed, which is useful. And then, if you have your phone linked up to the goggles, you can see an exact map of the last known point of location itself. Next, we have battery life. Now the specs here on the screen right there and i’d say that i’m, seeing a little bit less than that and that’s, probably because it’s winter here, because i’m flying a heck of a lot faster they’re claiming 40 kilometers an hour i’m doing like 60 to 100 Kilometers an hour most of the time so i’m, seeing like 12 ish minutes, give or take i’m depleting the battery down to eight percent on the goggle battery i’m, also seeing it lower than spec as well i’m.
Seeing like six to eight flights worth uh versus 110 minutes, so they’re saying, which would be more than that at their 20 minute, specs so point being that it’s a little lower but it’s also winter here so it’s, probably impacting things as well there and then for The controller inspect at nine hours, which is like way more than i’d, ever really need now for the last item before we get to my final thoughts, i’d be remiss if i did not discuss the startups down because it’s just special here. Let me just go ahead and turn this on there there we go one two three and give it a quick, listen that is a sound of death. That’S the same sound. Your drone will make when it hits a concrete pillar at 140 kilometers an hour roughly. So i appreciate that they remind you that every single time you start up your drone now bigger question here, though, is whether or not it’s worth buying this or another drone and, frankly, that’s going to depend 100 of what you plan to do with it. If you’re coming from the traditional fpv world, you’ll, probably look at this with two thoughts: damn and damn that price and those are both 100 true, and i think if you have no fpv experience, this is probably a complete overkill. Poor choice to start off with, and the reason is simple you’re gon na probably kill it really quickly and it’s gon na cost.
You a lot of money. You should start off with small toy fpv drones and work your way up, uh things that cost you a couple hundred bucks at most and then once you’ve got all that figured out then jump over to this, which still has a ton of safety features to keep You from ideally killing it as long as you understand the baseline stuff, if you’re coming from the rest of the dji world, where you have all these advanced flight modes and stuff like that again, none of that’s here so you’ve got to kind of keep those compromises In mind, as you jump over this now, if you’re experiencing fpv and doing a lot of cinematic fpv, then you’re probably going to find a ton of value in a stabilization in some of those aspects here, including the battery life that you wouldn’t necessarily find in a Normal fpv drone out there. Undoubtedly, though, this is dji’s first fpv product and while it’s an impressive lot of things, i suspect, if we fast forward even six months or a year from now, the firmware will look dramatically different and if we fast for another year or two from now, the actual Hardware and what they do with it and all the capabilities will also look dramatically different, but it’s super cool to see what they’ve done capability wise with the first gen product with that hopefully found this video interesting.