On March 2nd, 2021, DJI will be announcing the all-new DJI FPV Drone. DJI entered the FPV world around August of 2019 with their DJI Digital FPV system. This system took the FPV world by storm and has changed the industry as we know it. Will the new DJI FPV Drone do the same? Let’s talk about it!
What is FPV?
For those that are unfamiliar with what an FPV Drone is, FPV stands for “First Person View”. Each drone, or more commonly referred to as a quad, is equipped with a camera system that feeds a video signal directly to a set of goggles that a pilot is wearing. This allows the pilot to see everything that the drone sees. These quads are then controlled via a separate controller. An FPV drone typically has no safety or recovery features and the flight is completely manual.
DJI Digital FPV System
DJI entered the FPV world towards the end of the summer in 2019 with their DJI Digital FPV system. At first, this system was met with much disdain as there were a few issues right off the bat. The DJI system had a pretty substantial latency, which has since been corrected.
After several firmware and hardware updates were made, the DJI Digital FPV system is, by far, the best-looking FPV video system. Offering a full HD video feed as well as onboard HD recording makes the DJI Digital FPV system hard to beat. There is still a very small latency, but unless you are an FPV racing pilot, you won’t even notice it.
DJI FPV Drone
Now enter the DJI FPV Drone. On March 2nd, 2021, DJI is expected to announce its first attempt at making a Ready-to-Fly FPV Drone. This system, which includes the drone, goggles, and controller is expected to be priced at $1,299.
Out of the box, there does not appear to be an easy way to attach an external recording camera such as a GoPro or Osmo Action. Based on leaked and preview images, the internal recording capabilities will peak at 4K60. The DJI FPV Drone is also fully encased in what appears to be a plastic housing, which could be prone to breaking and potentially expensive to repair.
Lastly, in a leak via GetFPV, one of the largest FPV retailers, the manual was leaked. In that manual we can see that out of the box, even in the full manual mode, the drone will not be able to perform fully inverted maneuvers, without a manual override. There is also speculation that the DJI FPV Drone will need to clear airspace before it takes off, like its other drones. This system is notoriously bad and difficult to manage, even with the proper clearances.
Should you Buy It?
Seeing as the system is going to come in at a price point of $1,299, this is probably not the drone for someone who has never flown FPV before. A major part of FPV is crashing and fixing components and quads after those crashes. This tends to become costly, even considering that most FPV parts are pretty cheap. It is unlikely, given company history, that the DJI FPV Drone will be cheap to repair. There will be lots of proprietary parts, which can only be purchased through DJI.
I am just starting in FPV. What should I do?
If you have never flown FPV, or if you have and you know how difficult it is, the first thing you should do is buy a radio. I have found great success with the Taranis Qx7, but really any system will do. From there, you can download a simulator such as Lift-off (my favorite), Velocidrone, or several others. Practice in the simulator before you even consider flying a real quad. FPV drones can be extremely dangerous so flying in a simulator will also allow you to see if FPV is something you really want to pursue without spending hundreds or even thousands of dollars building and crashing your drone.
FPV is an amazing hobby. It is a true “bird’s eye view”. The flight experience is unlike any other. If it is something your considering and have more questions about, let us know down in the comments below. Also, make sure to head over to our Youtube Channel and check out our FPV content over there.