DJI Avata and Motion Controllers: Entry Level Drones?
This drone is easier to fly than I thought.
The DJI Avatar may be my favorite place to fly drones, but the high price and steep learning curve make me wonder what the FPV drone market will look like.
DJI is trying to shorten the learning curve with its first (and larger) DJI FPV drone, the Motion Controller, launched last year. I’ve been using this new controller for a week now, and while it’s very intuitive, I’m not sure if it’s really the right tool for controlling a drone.
Also, the company is releasing newer, smaller FPV glasses with HD display, touch panel and adjustable lenses, which are awesome. There’s a lot to love about the Avata drone, but there are a few questions you should ask yourself before deciding to go with the Mini 3 Pro.
The Avatar is called the “Cinewoop” drone because it’s small, safe, and fast. This drone is crazy with tubes, flips and other cool camera tech. If you’ve ever seen a drone on Instagram fly over a tree or small clearing, it’s probably one of them.
The inclusion of a protective case makes it safer and sturdier than something as light and small as the DJI Mini 3 Pro. I quickly made my way to a small pole I couldn’t even see with my glasses, and the drone shuddered when it found it in a nearby tree. DJI also designed the Avatar to die quickly after hitting an object with enough force, so that it doesn’t go crazy out of control and deal damage or other damage. This is a great safety feature, but also need to be kept in mind when performing intense stunts at altitude or underwater.
But don’t let its relative safety and small size fool you. The drone weighs almost twice as much as the Mini 3 Pro, which means it requires a Class 1 drone license to operate.
Battery life is 18 minutes, but I got close to 10-14 minutes before the drone warned it was running low on battery and had to go home.
It should be noted that the type of photos you can take with this drone is very different from what you would expect from a Mavic or Mini. However, in a short test, the camera is almost identical to the latest Mini 3 Pro. However, it doesn’t seem to be as good at handling low-light or dynamic scenes as the Mini.
There’s no denying that DJI built FPV filming with Ava, but the way the company markets its drones is a bit confusing.
There are three packages in total. One is just for the drone ($819) and the other with old DJI glasses, Avatar, and motion controllers ($1519). The latest bundle includes a new DJI headset, an Avatar, and a motion controller ($1,809).
The only way to get the gamepad-inspired remote is to buy it separately for $260. This remote allows you to control the drone completely with your hands, allowing you to perform vertical jumps, somersaults and daring maneuvers.
At first glance, this makes sense, as the motion controller is suitable for beginners. But is spending $1,500 to $1,800 on this drone a long-term start? I have flown this drone 3 times so far and would love to try some of the more challenging maneuvers shared by FPV enthusiasts on Instagram.
That doesn’t mean motion controllers are bad. I was a bit skeptical at first, but the answer was more than I thought. Park, wearing a VR headset, put her hands between my legs…
To enable safety features with the DJI motion controller, fly in sport or normal mode. You can still get a pretty epic flight with a motion controller, but if you want to push the envelope, I can see most people switching to the standard controller within a few months or even a few weeks after the Avatar. This makes the price a bit steep. Since there is no standard drone, goggles, and controller package, most people looking at this drone will want to consider the price.
It’s worth noting that you need extra batteries since you only get about 10-15 minutes of flight time, and the DJI Fly More combo with two extra batteries and a larger charger costs $285.
Either way, when you compare the new Avata and DJI FPV Goggle to the home-built Cinewoop drone, it’s hard to beat DJI’s image transmission, build quality, and battery life.
When you wear the headset, you’ll see a ton of information about speed, altitude, connection status, gridlines, levels, and more. In addition, you can easily change all camera settings using the touch panel on the side of the headset. You can also connect it to your phone or tablet and viewers can view your recordings and guide them.
For photography and videography, a device like the Mini 3 Pro can still capture all the images you need. In addition, stable HDR and activity tracking are also important to me. On the other hand, I know my partner Alex loves the FPV aspect of drones and has other cinematic ambitions about some great action. All of this means that you should think about what you are looking for before buying this drone.
You can get the DJI Avatar with Goggle V2 and motion controller from DJI for $1,809.