The new DJI Phantom 3 Advanced drone is a unique quadcopter with an integrated 3-axis gimbal system and a camera that can shoot 1080p HD video and 12 MP still photos. A lightbrigde digital streaming system permits realtime viewing of 720p video while the microSD card records the full resolution video. The Phantom 3 Advanced drone is shipped as a ready-to-fly quadcopter with a flight range of about 2 km. That is why it comes with virtually all the components required to start flying immediately including a transmitter (remote controller), a flight battery, AC charger, 16 GB microSD card, and USB cable.
DJI also provides a mobile app that enables live video streaming. It can be downloaded to your tablet or smartphone from their website. The package also comes with a comprehensive manual which you must read before attempting to fly. This DJI Phantom 3 Advanced review highlights the main features of this quadcopter.
The design of the DJI Phantom 3 Advanced model is a significant improvement over the previous Phantom 2 Vision. In addition to a solid body structure, it now has an improved video range, vision position sensor and a rectilinear camera lens. Now, all the radio transmitter settings can be accessed from a mobile device while live streaming is going on.
All the physical parts of this drone are well engineered. The excellent build quality provides an assurance that the plastic body, four landing legs, camera, gimbal system and the rotors will be able to withstand occasional bumps that may occur while you are learning how to fly this quadcopter. This drone is quite light; with the battery and rotors, it weighs about 2.8 pounds (1.3 kg). Its diagonal length is 23.2 inches (590 mm). Hence, after the rotors are removed, it can be placed inside a medium sized backpack.
Phantom 3 Advanced comes with the DJI Pilot App designed for iOS devices and Android. Different versions are available for tablets and phones. The app allows you to have total camera control. So you can use it to tilt or pan the camera, manage shutter speed, take photographs, set video start/stop and snap pictures. With the app, you can edit video footage and still photos after you have downloaded them to your phone. Then you can upload the edited photos and videos to social media networks. The lightbridge digital streaming system permits real time (FPV) viewing of 720p video while the microSD card records the full 1080p resolution. While you are learning how to fly, the app provides a flight simulation that you can use improve your flying skills. You can also use the Pilot App to view a flight log containing the time and flight durations and any videos and photos you took.
The hand-held transmitter has an intuitive design. Its edges are bounded by a slip-free rubber matte for easy and comfortable grip. With user-friendly features such as dedicated buttons, customizable buttons, and control sticks with a quick response, this transmitter offers a unique flying experience. Some of the controls and features available on this remote controller include: a power on/off, gimbal control, camera settings dial, return home button, mobile device holder, video recording and snapshot, flight mode switch and battery power indicator. A 6000 mAh lithium polymer battery powers the transmitter and enables it operate at its prescribed frequency of 2.4 GHz at a maximum distance of 2000 m.
The Phantom 3 Advanced built-in camera system can record video at 1080p at 60 fps in H.264 format. You can take still photos at 12 MP in RAW DNG or JPEG format. A 3-axis gimbal system provides a mounting platform for pan and tilt control. The rectilinear camera lens now has a 94 degree angle which provides better quality pictures than the fisheye lens used in the Phantom 2 Vision. In this new quadcopter, all camera controls are now available on both the transmitter and the mobile app.
A lithium polymer battery with a capacity of 4480 mAh a voltage of 15.2 VAC powers the aircraft. The battery provides a minimum flight time in the range of 23 to 30 minutes depending on the flight conditions. When using the AC charger provided by the manufacturer, it will consume 57W while charging. The amount of charge in the battery during a flight is displayed on the LED indicators on the transmitter. For longer flight durations, it is advisable to order for additional battery packs while purchasing the drone.