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Hello Everyone - Advice Needed

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by ShaggyRS6, Jan 15, 2015.

  1. ShaggyRS6

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    Hello everyone. A quick intro, I am a 42 year old Risk Manager, a Brit living in New Jersey USA, married 1 kid and 2 dogs. My passions are photography, hunting and the outdoors in general, I am Americas biggest red neck brit! I have flown Helo's for some time, from a Blade Mcpx right up to a T-Rex 600e.

    I am thinking of getting a drone, I have had the idea on the back burner for about 12 months, unlike my normal self I did not impulse buy! Whoop for me! I have been very heavily into photography since moving to the US http://www.leeshandphotography.com for anyone interested and I am thinking a drone would complement that hobby nicely, however, the more new cautious side of me thinks, will I use it for a couple of months and get bored, so have done my research over the past few months and think now is possibly the right time to buy.

    Next thing, which drone. The obvious thing is the new Phantom Plus, but… I do have a Sony RX-100 as part of my ever growing camera gear pile, I see this is compatible with the Draganflyer X4-ES drone , but at 25K that’s out of my range. Then the inspire 1 came along. It looks awesome, but i am loathed to just spend the money today as i want to be sure i am not just getting in because its shinny!

    I am happy to buy a bundle or buy separate, I would like FPV functionality. My budget is around $2K but would spend more if the Inspire was the right choice.

    Another question is just how good are the still shots you can get? And with that in mind would I be better off getting a drone with the Hero 4 – I know nothing about those cameras, never owned one never played with one. I want good quality stills. I realise that they will not be as great as my DSLR's (D800 and D7100) but good still shots are a must.

    Does anyone use a drone to compliment a photography hobby? if so how is that working out? are you getting bored? are you finding it a good buy. I did think of using it for weddings. I am taking some shots for a friend this year and thought some aerial footage may be good, might even open up some avenues for me.

    And finally what do people use to edited video? I have lightroom and use that for all my stills, but what are you using for the video? I have no experience in this area.

    Any help or direction would be great.
     
  2. QYV

    QYV

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    are you in northern NJ near the city at all? I live on Manhattan and fly around quite a bit with my Phantom 2 and gopro. The answer to your question is yes, people use drone to compliment photography hobby or business... did you see that "ultimate NYC 5 boroughs drone tour" video that went viral recently by SkyTechOne (Victor Chu) ? he's a perfect example.

    anyway if you're near enough to the city to come in and visit, I'd be happy to show you mine and explain all this stuff to you. $2K is a completely reasonable number to go from zero to fully functional in the hobby with FPV and everything, via the Phantom 2 and gopro Gimbal (currently called a H3-3D, new model H4-3D due out soon).

    Counting the cost of a Hero 4 black ($500 I think still) you'll be just at or over 2k
    '
    I'm afraid I CAN'T help you with other drone models and gimbals to support the professional cameras, I know they exist and I know they cost way more than 2K!

    The Inspire is nice and flashy, but I agree the price point is just too high considering the Gopro hero 4 black is still a better camera.
     
  3. Buckaye

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    The inspire does look cool... but I wouldn't sink my hard earned dollars into to that just yet...

    I will tell you as a fellow hobbyist who had a 600 size cp heli - you will be thrilled with how easy flying drones are in comparison... and unless you are into 3D flying... you likely won't look back :)

    I have heard nothing but good things about the GoPro4 - I have the 3+ and it's fine for my purposes - but I hear the quality of the 4 is just amazing. I have heard a complaint about gopro kind of nickle and diming customers now by not including things like the remote and stuff.

    Anyway - keep us posted...and take up QYV on his offer - though once you see it in person... you'll yell take my money DJI!
     
  4. ShaggyRS6

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    Hey there! Thanks for the reply. I live in Allendale in Bergen County and work in Manhattan. The scenery up here is stunning, another reason why I think it would be awesome. You ever up this way flying?
     
  5. ShaggyRS6

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    Thanks for the feedback. Would recommend a particular place to buy from if I were to go the Hero 4 Route? I mean as an entire bundle.
     
  6. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
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    Hi Shaggy .. yes, the Phantom is an awesome flying camera - check my photo website to see what you can do with it.
    At the moment I'm watching the Inspire. It's a great flying machine and a very good video unit but it looks like it is almost no improvement on the P2V+ when it comes to stills. I can't justify the extra $$ and the inconvenience of the extra bulk for travelling with it - yet. Its camera is modular and I suspect that sooner or later there will be a high quality still camera available for it.
    Until then the P2V+ is the machine for me.
    If you go the gopro route, you can't have the camera control you are used to on land.
    Gopro photographers have to set their camera to shoot at intervals before they take off and hope that in the photos they bring back is the one they want.
    Say - a pic each 2 seconds - the "spray and pray" technique.
    With the P2V+ you can control the camera the way you are used to.
    Take what you want, when you want.
    Despite what the gopro fans say, the quality isn't very different and the usability is much better.
     
  7. Larry L

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    Welcome aboard. Yes the phantom line is a great complement. As far as the GoPro. JMO, I feel the Vision plus camera is better if your focus is on stills where as the GoPro is hands down better with video. The good thing about the Phantom, you can trigger the camera & video from the controller as where the GoPro needs to be set prior to flight. The 14 Meg raw files with the vision plus are pretty good if shooting in daylight. If night, the camera is not the greatest. It only has a high setting of 400 iso. As far as the inspire. Once the kinks are worked out, I think it will be pretty awesome. if I could get one, I would. I think the 12 meg file and the introduction of add on camera attachments, (telephoto lenses, etc) will be great. I think the 3200 iso wont be bad either, just do not knows how much noise there will be in the higher range.
     
  8. ShaggyRS6

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    Yeah - I read that about the GoPro, one of the pitfalls - I had a look at your pics and they are great. I just wonder if I buy the P2V+ and then wish I had got the Inspire. I have a Sony Rx-100 as well and can see the possibilities of that and the inspire. This is a hard decision.
     
  9. Great Pumpkin

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    As far as I know, none of the Phantoms has the carrying capacity for an Sony RX100 or a way to trigger it for stills. I saw a video about a year ago of some guys who did fasten an RX100 onto their Phantom, put the rig up into the air over Iceland, and it immediately flew over the sea, crashed, and drowned. Many $$$$ up in smoke just like that.
    I use my P2V to take publishable quality stills (>300 dpi), I use the video function for fun and games. I've had mine a year and still have a lot of fun just flying even when not using it for photography.
     
  10. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
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    I was all set to get the Inspire and read every post here: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthre ... 4&page=627 to keep up with its introduction. But I've been disappointed with the stills that users have been getting and can't see it as an improvement on the Phantom for stills - yet.
     
  11. QYV

    QYV

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    I don't think so, only gone to NJ once to film some scenes for an (amateur) movie and I don't really know where I was lol but I'd definitely be down once the weather gets a little nicer.

    I work in midtown and live in the east village so if you're interested in running down to EV once evening for happy hour or whatever we could have a drink and talk Phantoms. As of this post you still only have a 4 post count, I think you need 5 or 10 to be able to PM but once you get your post count up (go post "cool!" on some threads in the video forum or something) feel free to PM me your email or other contact info we can go from there
     
  12. ShaggyRS6

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    Well, thanks so much for everyone commenting thus far. You may have saved me a lot of money. Keep the comments coming though. What a great forum! Glad I found it.
     
  13. ShaggyRS6

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    Thanks very much for the offer. Would love to take you up on that. We could go to A Salt and Battery :) Got a craving for proper fish and chips ;)
     
  14. QYV

    QYV

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    B&H or Amazon are really good options. B&H is a little more expensive like $20 or so but their customer service is excellent. I had a flyaway and completely lost my first one and they gave me 70% off a replacement.

    or on Amazon you can find them for slightly cheaper, but if you have any issues you're looking at having to ship back and forth to return it or whatever.

    Get the Phantom + Zenmuse gimbal bundle... currently the H3-3D but I'm sure there will be a H4-3D bundle once that gimbal is released. Then it's up to you to decide if you want to save $100 and get the "v1" Phantom 2 with the old style remote, or spend $100 more and get the "v2" Phantom 2 with the upgraded motors and Remote Control unit.
     
  15. kitari

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    Well I probably won't be of much help as I just fly the FC40, but pictures look pretty good, and video isn't too bad either as long as you don't touch the zoom function. I also fly cp helicopters (very poorly :lol: ) and I can say without a doubt that the phantom is much much easier to fly and far more durable. As for fun factor, I've had mine for a little over half a year now and it still puts a smile on my face. If you fly in manual mode, the phantom really shows it's true power and can even do flips, but no 3d flying. They do have 3d quadcopters out there though, both collective pitch and even fixed pitch, if sport flying is more of your thing, but If you're going for video quality, I'd personally go with the phantom 2 non vision, with hd-3d gimbal/gopro3. I think the inspire is very nice as well, but from what I've read, they're still working out all the bugs, so I'd wait on that one for a little longer.
     
  16. ShaggyRS6

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    I think at the moment im erring on the side of the Vision Plus - I want the ability to take shots when i want.
     
  17. QYV

    QYV

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    the camera in the Vision series is vastly underpowered compared to the Hero3+, the Hero 4 blows them away. When I want pictures, I either put my GoPro in timelapse mode or Photo+video mode and just have it snap a still every 5 or 10 seconds.

    Yes, you have to sort through a lot of pictures after you land, but if photo on demand is your deciding factor, you're really hurting the quality of videos you'll be taking.
    EDIT: wow, turns out the Vision+ takes 14mp still photos, and the gopro hero 4 black is still only 12mp. I don't know the exact resolution but I still feel like on-demand photo isn't a sole reason to go to a Vision, but that's for me and my use I'm in the hobby to take video primarily, not stills.
     
  18. ShaggyRS6

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  19. QYV

    QYV

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    well, I have nothing to say about #1. probably a decent deal... if you want a Vision+ that's just that.

    The price on #2, let's do this: goal is to beat that bundle @ 2350

    P2 with H3-3D = 829
    Hero 4 black = 500
    Boscam TS353 = 33
    Boscam RX-LCD5802 = 150
    FPVLR antennas (1tx 1rx) = $100
    iOSD Mini = 68
    PnP cable = 10
    RC display mount = 35
    tax, shipping, so far etc = guesstimating say $40 being liberal
    Battery 2-pack = 250 (prime free shipping)
    so stopping right here, we're at approximately $2015, 335 below B&H AND I have you 1 additional battery, a better FPV transmitter, receiver, and WAY better antennas. What I just spec'ed you is easily a 1+ Mile FPV setup in a non-urban environment.
    So yes, you'll still need some memory chips for the gopro, and I didn't get you 4xAA rechargable batteries and a charger (blah).
    I also haven't addressed a gimbal lock ($20-30, not in the B&H bundle anyway) or a case, on Amazon the good wheeled ones run between 200-250. I love the **** out of my backpack which was only $170 and imo it's way easier to walk out into nature with a backpack as opposed to a massive hard wheeled case. try hiking or climbing a mountain with a wheeled case :)

    I've made this point countless times before on this forum, yep the money lines up nearly equivalent BUT I still beat the bundle AND the system I built has an extra P2 battery ($150 solo value) and the FPV performance destroys the bundle. I know a guy with that bundle and he says signal breaks up at 3 to 500 FEET, meanwhile I'm going 1100+ meters away at 100m altitude over the city.
    Don't even get me started on how much better this setup is than a Vision+... except for stills quality apparently heh
     
  20. ShaggyRS6

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    Did you build that yourself?