DJI Announce Inspire 2 and Phantom 4 Pro Quadcopters

DJI extends their drone dominance by announcing not one, but two new drones - the new DJI Inspire 2 and Phantom 4 Pro flying cameras are now faster and more powerful than ever, offering the latest aerial technology and innovations packed in a familiar form factor.

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The new Inspire 2 builds on the legacy of the Inspire 1, which was announced two years ago, and now the 2nd generation Inspire is even faster - able to achieve break-neck speeds of up to 67 mph, reaching 50mph in just 4 seconds.

The Inspire 2 features a new dual battery system with built-in redundancy and a maximum flight time of 27 minutes. The Inspire 2 adds a second forward-facing camera giving you a veiw of where the drone is flying to and is designed to help out pilots operating the master controller, while the camera operator receives a separate feed from the Zenmuse X5S and/or X4S camera mounted on the main gimbal.

The Inspire 2 houses its image-processing capabilities in something that DJI calles - CineCore 2.0, which is embedded into the airframe and allows for processing of large video files faster than ever before.

The more advanced Micro Four Thirds X5S camera is capable of capturing 5.2K Raw up to 30p and 4K Raw up to 60fps in CinemaDNG capturing directly to new and super-fast CINESSD drives on board the Inspire 2 body.

Other codecs include popular Apple ProRes 422 HQ (5.2K, 4K) and ProRes 4444 XQ (4K) formats as well as the more compressed H.264, and H.265 at birates is up to 100Mbps. Raw and Prores do require an additional license and are only available on the X5S camera, which has a 20.8 Megapixel M4/3 type sensor with interchangeable lenses. The X4S is a more affordable option with a 1-inch sensor and a 24mm (35mm FOV equiv.) lens including a lens shutter for minimising rolling shutter artifacts.

The short film below was captured using only the new DJI Inspire 2 and no other conventional cameras.

Behind the Scenes:

The DJI Inspire 2 features new intelligent flight modes such as Spotlight Pro Mode, which has the ability to lock onto a subject during flight while the aircraft flies freely in another direction – thus enabling you to get stunning aerial shots of  fast moving subjects such as boats or cars.

The forward-facing camera offers TapFly, which directs Inspire 2 to any point on the screen while avoiding obstacles along the way, while ActiveTrack recognizes common subjects such as people, cars and animals, sending the Inspire 2 to follow behind, lead in front, circle above or track alongside while always flying forward, ensuring the forward-facing obstacle sensing system keeps the aircraft safe.

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DJI also updated the Phantom line of quadcopters with the latest Phantom 4 Pro. The new camera packed with a new 1-inch 20-megapixel sensor, and close to 12 stops of dynamic range bring out levels of detail and low-light performance unprecedented in a flying camera of this size.

Its mechanical shutter eliminates rolling shutter distortion in fast-moving scenes. Phantom 4 Pro can capture slow-motion 4K video up to 60 fps at a maximum bitrate of 100 mbps. In addition, the Phantom 4 Pro offers H.265 video compression, which substantially improves video quality at the same bitrate.

DJI also announced  a new controller for the Phantom 4 Pro. The new controller comes with an optional high luminance display, providing a clear and vivid live HD view from the main camera as well as essential telemetry data, even in direct sunlight. The aircraft will automatically choose between 2.4GHz and 5.8GHz once powering on to gain a clear signal in areas with high radio interference. The new controller has a built-in GPS, compass, Micro-SD card slot and HDMI port.

Also new in the Phantom 4 Pro is Draw Mode that allows operators to draw lines on the controller display and direct the Phantom 4 Pro to fly that route.

ActiveTrack recognizes common subjects such as people and bikes, then follows them from any angle while maintaining camera focus, and includes three new modes – New Circle, Profile and Spotlight.

Narrow sensing enhances obstacle avoidance sensitivity so the aircraft can fly through complex environments like narrow doorways.

TapFly now works backwards and comes with a new Free mode that allows a pilot to set the direction of flight, turn the Phantom 4 Pro or tilt the gimbal without changing the direction of flight.

The Phantom 4 Pro will start at £1590 inc. VAT and is scheduled for release next week, while the bigger Inspire 2 body starts at £3,059 with a choice of either the X5S (£1969 with lens) or X4S (£629 with a fixed lens).