If you are into aerial photography and videography, DJI is the company that does not need too much introduction.
In fact, DJI is so popular and powerful that it recently upped its game by acquiring Hasselblad – the renowned Swedish medium-format camera manufacturer. To put things into perspective, Hasselblad was the camera that took the famous moon photos during the Apollo 11 mission.
What’s more, DJI offers a lineup of drones for any purpose, budget, and skill level. For example, the DJI Spark is an entry-level model which packs an excellent punch in terms of video quality, maneuverability, and overall ease of use.
|Flight Time – 16-minute flight time on a single charge|
|Transmission Distance – 1.2 miles|
|Maximum Speed – 31 miles per hour|
|Camera – 12 MP camera with 1/2.3-inch CMOS sensor and f/2.6 35mm-equivalent lens|
|Gimbal – 2-axis mechanical gimbal with a range of -85° to 0°|
|Obstacle Detection – 1 to 16 feet sensing range with diffuse reflective surface detection|
|Image Resolution – up to 3968 x 2976 in three different image modes|
|Video Resolution – Full HD at 1920 x 1080|
|ISO – Photo ISO ranges from 100 to 1600 and video ISO ranges from 100 – 3200|
|Drone Size – 5.63 x 5.63 x 2.17 inches|
|Drone Weight – 0.66 pounds|
The primary aim of the DJI Spark drone is to bring aerial photography and videography closer to anybody who’s interested in it. This drone is remarkably easy to launch, even indoors, and it comes with a set of simple controls that can be mastered in no time.
Who Is the Product For?
Getting a better understanding of the ideal DJI Spark user might not be as easy as it seems. It would be difficult to pinpoint just a few types of users because this drone covers a wide spectrum of aerial footage applications.
Those who have never owned a drone before can benefit from the Spark’s user-friendly interface, straightforward commands, and safety features. Drone enthusiasts, on the other hand, should benefit from a compact and reliable drone that can be deployed at any moment. Not to mention the fact that you should be able to keep the Spark in an oversized pocket.
The small size is also ideal for adventurers, people who enjoy extreme sports, and other thrill-seekers. For them, the Spark should be a perfect companion for taking breathtaking footage of different stunts. In addition, this is also a great family drone. It allows you to take exceptional videos and photos of your vacations, celebrations, and other fun family activities.
It is worth stressing that the feature which allows such versatility, besides the small form factor, is the ease of use. You don’t actually need any prior knowledge or comprehensive training to safely fly the Spark. This drone has the ability to launch from the palm of your hand and follow simple gestures to take amazing photos and videos.
Pros of Product
The QuickShot mode provides professional-looking footage with a single tap. There are four different cinematic compositions that the Spark can take in the QuickShot mode. If you choose Helix, the Spark will spiral around the subject while flying upward for a cool effect.
The Dronie composition, on the other hand, can be an excellent option to capture a cool video of your outdoor exercise routine. The Spark zeros in on the subject while flying up and back in this mode. In addition, the Rocket and Circle compositions are for the standard drone footage that we have all come to like.
If you want the Spark to follow you, the ActiveTrack mode is there to help. This mode features two different tracking options to ensure you get the best possible footage. The profile option follows you from the side while the drone keeps a fixed perspective. The trace option tracks your movement from the front or behind and it can even circle around you.
Another feature that separates the Spark from the competition is the ability to control the drone via a set of simple gestures. There are six simple gestures the Spark recognizes. If you want to launch the drone from your palm, just let it recognize your face and off it goes.
Raising your arms in the air will beckon the Spark and it will start recording if you raise one arm with a clenched fist. What’s more, taking selfies has been made super easy with this drone. To take a selfie you need to make a framing gesture with your index finger and thumb in front of the Spark.
DJI GO 4 App
Capturing cool aerial videos without the ability to instantly edit and share them on social media would be a pity. But there is no need to worry since the free DJI GO 4 app lets you preview, edit, and manipulate your videos as soon as you take them.
The app is compatible with most iOS and Android devices and has features to match the most premium editing software. It allows you to tweak the camera settings after capturing the footage, integrate music, and use templates for a more cinematic look.
Cons of Product
The 16-minute flight time might be considered a drawback of this otherwise excellent drone. The flight time puts a limitation on the amount of footage you can take in a single go. It might be a problem if you are taking aerial videos of sporting activities and other events that might require a better battery life.
To overcome the short flight time, you should carefully plan the shoot to ensure you capture the best moments. Having a set of spare batteries also helps but it does bring up the overall cost of the drone.
One of the Spark’s coolest features might also be one of its biggest downsides. Namely, the entire drone measures only 5.63 x 5.63 x 2.17 inches and weighs 0.66 pounds. These dimensions make it one of the most compact drones in the market but reduce its performance under windy conditions.
If you fly the DJI Spark when it’s windy, you should not expect it to reach the maximum speed of 31 mph. Wind can also reduce the overall flight and hovering time as the drone would have to actively fight the wind to stay level on the subject.
A general piece of advice would be to avoid extremely windy conditions to prevent any unexpected situations. On the other hand, you should be able to fly the Spark under moderate winds. Just pay close attention to the battery life and speed.
In the world of videography, aerial or otherwise, 4K resolution is the “it” thing. But the DJI Spark does not offer the 4K resolution which might make it less desirable for some professionals.
With its 12MP CMOS sensor, shutter speed of 2-1/8000s, and 24 Mbps video bitrate, the DJI Spark is fully capable of producing exceptional full HD footage.
After the Launch
Judging by the number of smart features, the DJI Spark is truly one the best compact drones you can currently find in the market. The f/2.6 lens and the CMOS sensor allow you to take great 1080p videos. The sensor itself features larger pixels which ensure the most optimal color and light sensitivity.
For comparison purposes, the DJI Spark should be able to perform about 30% better than the iPhone 7 in terms of capturing light and color. But if you need a drone that can deliver even better image quality and professional features, you should check out the DJI Mavic 2 Pro or the DJI Inspire series of drones.
The Mavic 2 Pro, for example, comes with a 20 MP Hasselblad camera that has an amazing 1-inch CMOS sensor. On the other hand, the Inspire series is capable of capturing RAW video files for clean-slate post-production.