This week The ADAM elements team got to play with the unreleased DJI Spark drone. With limited flying experience, this was a good chance to test the Spark for the average beginner and report to our drone fans before they spend $500 or more.
The biggest pros for a beginning pilot are the amount of advanced software and flight stabilization that comes packed into DJI drones. Automatic collision detection is a huge protection for your investment, and also makes flying so much easier. The Spark only weighs about 300 grams (2/3 of a pound, but it simply doesn't get tossed around by the wind like other small drones. Not crashing is the first step to flying!
The DJI Spark also comes in a handful of pleasing colors so it feels more personal than a grey flying robot. It can also be charged by micro USB (that means a power bank) so there isn't a need for a special charging station like other drones. Portability and ease of use is the name of the game!
The fact that it comes with camera stabilization and a number of cool selfie taking commands that can be triggered with just your hands is great for amateurs. Many people might be intimidated by the DJI’s app and controller combo, which has a dizzying amount of information for a first timer to digest.
The cons are the price and the quick wave of competing drones that will provide similar quality for cheaper. Since writing this blog entry, our team has tested 3 other drones that mimic DJI drones in both looks and quality. When the software features catch up eventually, there will be many more options for consumers, so waiting a while to buy a drone could be a good idea if you are still undecided.
iPhone and iPad users will also need to consider how they will be using this drone. Combining the DJI Spark with an iKlips Wizard or miReader 4K can really make the difference in ease of use and portability. Uploading your shots just minutes after you took them is a pretty great feeling. We advise getting a few accessories for DJI drones like 1) a high quality charging/ data sync cable, 2) a portable microSD card reader for iPhone/iPad.
So if you can afford a DJI Spark, go for it! If you want to wait a while, the technology will only get better and cheaper. Just don't forget iOS users have to be prepared to work around cable and microSD card hurdles. Don't worry though, ADAM has got your back.