Hands On With the DJI Spark Drone

Last week we travelled to Luna Park for a hands-on session with the brand new DJI Spark.

The DJI Spark is a compact and approachable entry into the drone world with the ability to be controlled by hand gestures and lift off from the palm of your hand. For myself, having never flown a drone before I was particularly impressed with the ease of use via simple hand movements. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to sample the DJI Spark with the controller or via the DJI app which somewhat limits my opinion about the product.

DJI Spark

Gesture mode is impressive though. When the DJI Spark takes off from your open hand, it automatically enters Gesture Mode with PalmControl, which lets users control Spark with hand movements. This allows you can to send the unit up and away from you, have it follow you and even take a selfie, then call it back and land it with just your hands.

DJI Spark

The DJI Spark also comes with new flight options that empower you to capture content in interesting ways. The new QuickShot Intelligent Flight Mode offers four ‘QuickShots’:
– Rocket: sending Spark straight up into the air with the camera pointed down
– Dronie: flying up and away from your subject
– Circle: rotating around the subject
– Helix: spiralling away from a subject as it flies upward.
For each QuickShot, Spark will automatically create a 10-second video from your flight that is ready to share on social media.

What the DJI Spark lacks in flying time, 13 minutes to be safe (16 minutes max), and resolution, opting for a 1080p video camera on a 2-axis gimbal, it makes up for in portability, with the tiny drone weighing just 300 grams and small enough to fit into a jacket pocket or any bag.

DJI Spark

DJI Spark

The cheapest DJI Spark package doesn’t come with a remote, which confirms that this product is designed to appeal to a brand new audience who are happy to control it by hand for basic image and video capturing. I enjoyed my introduction to the DJI Spark and think it’s a feature packed entry point to the drone market, but as a consumer who would be looking to incorporate the drone into a content creation kit, I was most interested in seeing how powerful it was as a remote controlled drone and how it differed to the more expensive Mavic Pro, neither of which I could ascertain from the demonstration.

DJI Spark

RRP for the DJI Spark, including an aircraft, a battery, a USB charger and three pairs of propellers, is $859 AUD. The Spark Fly More Combo includes an aircraft, two batteries, four pairs of propellers, a remote controller, propeller guards, a charging hub, a shoulder bag and all necessary cables, with a retail price of $1,199 AUD.

Buy the DJI Spark here.

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