I was going to review a $1,200 drone, but I lost it in Hawaii — here's what happened
Antonio Villas-Boas, Jan. 28, 2017, 11:00 AM
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I always wanted to try my hand at flying a drone, and an upcoming two-week trip to Hawai'i seemed like the perfect opportunity.
The drone of choice: The $1,200 DJI Phantom 4. As a flying machine, it isn't that much different to other drones — it goes up, down, sideways, forwards, and backwards, and a single battery lasts about 25 minutes, which is unfortunately typical for commercial drones.
What sets the Phantom 4 apart is its incredibly sharp 4K camera.
Indeed, Hawaii's unreal beauty and landscapes made for the perfect location to test a drone and its camera.
Here's a 4K YouTube video of Hawaii taken with the DJI Phantom 4 (not by me):
My first few flights were relatively limited, as I gingerly got used to the controls and the Phantom 4's abilities.
At times, it struggled when flying against a 20 mile-an-hour breeze, but the Phantom 4 seemed to have an indefatigable desire to please its pilot.
And it can go far, too. At one point, I flew the drone two miles out to sea before the DJI app on my iPhone, which was connected to the Phantom 4's controller, alerted me that it had only enough battery life to return to the take-off location. Two miles.
It just does what you want it to do during its 25-minute battery life.
Until it doesn't.
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