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Old April 29th, 2016, 06:22 AM   #1
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Phantom 3 Standard - Does the job?

Hi All,

Since the CASA here in Australia is lightening the rules for commercial drone use later this year (drones under 2kg used for commercial purposes no longer require a UAV license & essentially get the same treatment as recreational users), I'm thinking it might be time to test the waters, if for no other reason than to stay competitive. The new rules don't come in effect until September, but I'd like to get something fairly soon to get plenty of flight time under my belt before I use it on a job.

I'm not going to be a drone power-user - I've seen enough drone "follow-cam" footage to last a lifetime - but would love to be able to use one particularly for establishing shots, slow orbits, fly-overs, etc. For example, a nice orbit shot of a coastal headland to open a travel piece.

Has anyone used the Phantom 3 Standard and found it up to the task for basic shots such as these, which are mostly pre-programmed via the app? Or has anybody found the opposite - that the reduced feature set means more manual flying and more difficulty to get this type of footage? And is the footage usable for 1080p broadcast purposes (yes, I know it doesn't meet most networks minimum specs but this would come under the special use exceptions they generally have; I'm more concerned about discernible image quality)?

As I'll only be using it for very occasional shots, I don't really want to shell out the bucks for the latest Phantom 4, or for the Phantom 3 Professional, if I can pay half the price and still get the result I need. And, of course, it's cheaper to replace when I do inevitably crash while learning to fly it.

Thanks in advance for all your replies!
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Old May 1st, 2016, 06:43 AM   #2
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Re: Phantom 3 Standard - Does the job?

Thats all i use John, points of interest nice turns on the church and venues couple straight overs and such. great. steve
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Old May 1st, 2016, 11:10 PM   #3
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Re: Phantom 3 Standard - Does the job?

Thanks Steve. I shoot some weddings but I think they're usually chaotic enough without the stress of adding a drone to the mix. I probably would put together a library of generic aerial shots of venues/churches over time though, so that I can use them where appropriate.

Last edited by John Wiley; May 2nd, 2016 at 12:18 AM.
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Old May 2nd, 2016, 05:31 AM   #4
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Re: Phantom 3 Standard - Does the job?

Hi John

I was thinking much the same after the September regulations kick in. I'm just wondering if you build up some stock footage as a private "recreational" flyer during the week when you are not doing any weddings could they still zap you for using your own footage if you include a shot segment at a later wedding? I have seen the recreational new format and it does state that it's based on the fact that you are not being paid for it. How different are the new regs for commercial use with an under 2kg drone or can you just use your recreational stock footage at a later date in your wedding videos?
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Old May 2nd, 2016, 09:36 PM   #5
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Re: Phantom 3 Standard - Does the job?

Hi Chris, I'm not too sure about how the rules will apply retrospectively. I can't see how they would possibly police it though, unless all the footage has a baked in time stamp!

The new rules for drones under 2kg brings their use pretty much inline with recreational rules - no closer than 5km from an airport, not near people, maintain line of site, etc. So essentially any footage a recreational user can currently obtain will be legally possibly for a commercial user to obtain after September 29.

Here's a link showing some of the current rules and some of the new ones coming in in September:

https://www.rpastraining.com.au/casr...gal-or-illegal
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Old May 3rd, 2016, 05:41 AM   #6
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Re: Phantom 3 Standard - Does the job?

Thanks John

I'm sure what we intend to do will be fine! Yep I have also seen the new regulations and there is no way I would try and juggle 2 cameras and fly a drone at the same time so, like you, I'm really only going for opening footage from a personal stockpile
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Old May 4th, 2016, 07:19 AM   #7
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Re: Phantom 3 Standard - Does the job?

I would suggest grabbing the beauty shots, etc. a few days before, or even earlier/later on the same day, but not during the event.

I can't speak to the image quality of the P3, but I'm not a big fan of how DJI treats their customers when problems occur.

-gb-
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Old May 5th, 2016, 12:09 AM   #8
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Re: Phantom 3 Standard - Does the job?

Thanks for the input Greg.

Do you have any suggestions other than DJI for all-in-one solutions at a similar price point?
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Old May 9th, 2016, 03:33 PM   #9
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Re: Phantom 3 Standard - Does the job?

I personally went with the Yuneec Q500+. There are variants that offer a gimbal for GoPro cameras as well as a 4K version. Although they have had some issues, they seem to be more responsive to their customer's issues. The Solo, by 3DR is another avenue you might look at. You have to supply your own GoPro and viewing device, but the pre-programmed camera moves are very nice. They have also been known to have excellent customer service. I joined several Facebook Groups last year that are dedicated to owners of various UAV brands, in order to see what the customers had to say, good or bad, and how they were treated by the companies when problems did occur.

Good luck and be safe,

-gb-
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