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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'm surprised that there isn't mention on this forum of the DJI Phantom quadcopter and how useful it can be to get some cool shots and trail footage. My son-in-law and I went in on a joint effort, neither one of us with any RC experience, and after just a handful of flights came up with some good, usable footage.

I see a lot more possibilities in our future.

Here's a video with some footage from our June 1st ride in Flagstaff, Arizona. We learned many things, but the most important was how portable and fun this little quadcopter can be.


<p><a href="http://vimeo.com/67487720">Flagstaff AZ day trip.</a> from <a href="http://vimeo.com/steveconnolly">Steve Connolly</a> on <a href="http://vimeo.com">Vimeo</a>.</p>


I have no more room for any other hobbies.....
 

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Amazing work, the gopro mounts directly to the quad? Or were you using another smaller camera? Did you use the gopro app or anything else to see what the quad was seeing or just point it in the general direction of the subject matter you were trying to capture? I love the footage where the quad gets close enough the ground that it stirs up the dust and plants.
Great job!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
ECU-Yukon, Thanks. Yes, the Gopro mounts directly to the Phantom. We have an aftermarket carbon fiber mount that has some small rubber dampeners to reduce 'jellovision' or jello effect produced by the rapid movement of the copter, wind, prop noise, etc.

We are currently flying the quad by sight. The wide lens of the Gopro is thankfully fairly forgiving. There is an app that allows your iphone/ipad to see what the camera sees, but that just adds another level of complexity. Also, we eventually want to get the copter to fly FPV (First Person View). When flying in this mode, what the camera is seeing is projected onto goggles that the person flying the Phantom is wearing. This allows you fly in some really tight places, but getting setup for FPV and learning to fly FPV is a little pricey and there is a definite learning curve associated. It is in our future, but definitely down the road a bit.

The dust was something that we weren't anticipating or expecting. We thought it detracted from the footage....glad you liked it though...

-SS
 

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I'm surprised that there isn't mention on this forum of the DJI Phantom quadcopter
Nice trails. I'm currently waiting for my second Phantom to get shipped back from DJI...

HD Black Protune shooting tip:

Shoot with the WB set to RAW and you won't get those crazy, off color blue skies with fringing that aren't fixable in post (see 1:38, 3:25, etc for examples of this phenomenon).
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for the tip PS.

Do you have any examples of what this looks like? If I'm going to modify the settings, I'd like to see some footage to compare it too. Mind attaching a link?

-SS
 

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Thanks for the tip PS.

Do you have any examples of what this looks like? If I'm going to modify the settings, I'd like to see some footage to compare it too. Mind attaching a link?

-SS
Here's a quickie comparison:

Protune WB. AUTO vs. CAM RAW from paradigm shifter on Vimeo.

The final product can obviously look much different depending upon how you color grade the Protune footage. You have much more flexibility shooting CAM RAW because you're not stuck with those crazy-alien-planet-aqua-skies in post.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for putting that comparison together. I definitely noticed a difference. Currently, I'm not doing anything in terms of post processing and colorization. I will make note of this as I get more involved with the editting process. Until then, whatever tips and suggestions you want to pass on would be appreciated.

Your 2nd Phantom? Wow. Can I ask what happened to the 1st?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
KK, you'll have to go out and browse a few heli or quadcopter forums to answer that. Sorry, I don't have a response. From the get-go, I have only been interested in the DJI Phantom because of it's relationship to the Gopro. I'm sure there are less expensive DIY kits and such out there.

There's even a toy quad (MQX quadcopter) that will support a small lipstick or keychain camera, but the video quality is just not there, and I hear it's not as easy to fly. Here's an example that I pulled from a quick Google search of MQX video.. Blade MQX Camera Testing - YouTube

Good luck.

-SS
 

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Thanks for putting that comparison together. I definitely noticed a difference. Currently, I'm not doing anything in terms of post processing and colorization. I will make note of this as I get more involved with the editting process. Until then, whatever tips and suggestions you want to pass on would be appreciated.

Your 2nd Phantom? Wow. Can I ask what happened to the 1st?
Yeah, you need to color correct Protune footage as it's flat (contrast, curves, etc.) and unsharpened. Lots of tutorials/FAQs out there on color correction. Worst case you can use Gopro's free Cineform Studio to do some basic stuff.

1st Phantom suffered from the "flyaway" problem. half way through a test flight (no camera attached thank goodness) I landed softly, then took off normally. Throttle went to full, no control from the TX, and it took off straight up to the moon and disappeared over the horizon. After a lengthy back and forth with DJI (first the folks in China, then the folks in Austin) they replaced the Phantom (not their policy). However, the replacement was DOA with a defective IMU. I just received the repaired unit back today.
 
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