Phantom flying drone captures stunning, stable video

DJI's Phantom quadricopter's new two-axis gimbal eliminates shaky footage

A new stabilization system for the Phantom remote-controlled flying drone helps it capture stunning landscapes and maneuver in tight spaces.

The two-axis Zen Muse gimbal from aerial videography company DJI allows a GoPro Hero 3 action camera to be mounted underneath a Phantom quadricopter made by the same company. The result is a camera that can be remotely controlled by the pilot and video that doesn't suffer from the jitters and rockiness usually associated with drone footage.

To see the Phantom and new mount in action, watch a video on YouTube.

"We have all these people who have been buying Phantoms and trying to use them in these professional instances," said Colin Guinn, CEO of DJI. "But because the camera is directly attached to the Phantom you have a lot of shake in your footage."

Guinn, who enjoys piloting the drone himself, navigated the Phantom over the Las Vegas strip at night through signs and landmarks to record professional footage. Typically a production crew, helicopter and thousands of dollars would be needed to do something similar. In one instance Guinn flew it through the intertwining metal that is part of the replica Eiffel Tower at the Paris Hotel and Casino.

"The people who are putting our two-axis gimbal on the Phantom are probably using it for independent productions, student films or advertising," he said at the NAB Show.

The Phantom alone costs US$679 and has been available since early this year. The Zen Muse stabilization system won't be available for another one to two months and pricing will be less than $1,000, according to Guinn. The GoPro Hero 3 camera is sold separately for $200 to $400 depending on the model.

The battery in the Phantom will last for seven to 15 minutes depending on use and payload on the drone. Additional batteries are sold for $23.

Nick Barber covers general technology news in both text and video for IDG News Service. E-mail him at Nick_Barber@idg.com and follow him on Twitter at @nickjb.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags consumer electronicsroboticsNABGoPro

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Nick Barber

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?