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knowing what you know now- would you buy another Inspire 1
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hammerdrone
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Flight distance : 34442 ft

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I`m a potential new pilot of the I1 (new to this forum as well) and after doing EXTENSIVE research- I have this one question... Should I spend $3,000 on this copter?
I`ve logged MANY hours with different quads over the years and my day job is in software development so (I would think) my skill level shouldn`t be in question. What is... is the reliability of this system. All I see is problems. Current threads show problems with batteries, controllers, GPS lock, etc... I really want to find a reason to shell out 3G`s for this thing because it`s "FREAKING" cool. I LOVE it`s design and I would love to get into areal video!!!

If you`re willing to fill out a survey on your experiences with this bird - I would love to setup one and of course share the results will ALL!!

At a minimum Can anyone give me an (HONEST) stat on how many safe flights vs errored flights they`ve had. (ie. 40 to 1) I`m curious of what the percentage of is out there. I`m well aware that the "happy" users usually don`t frequent this forum.

I really want to join the club but losing a $3,000 copter due to a manfacturing defect isn`t something I care for. Your kind/constructive thoughts are most appreciated!!!

Thanks everyone!!!
2015-6-18
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hammerdrone
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If I have interest I`ll setup a surveymonkey link for all and of course share results after they are final. If you have suggestions on questions please post them. Im open to that everyone!!!
2015-6-18
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River 1
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After 180 flights ... you bet I would buy the I1 again .. in a heartbeat.. even if I had a questionable crash.. I would replace within the day! This bird is the best, stable, powerful in horrid conditions and hands down is far more than I ever expected!
2015-6-18
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InspirelessAggi
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I've flown helis for a while.   I bought a phantom 3 and love to fly it.  It's been very reliable and I haven't had any issues so far.     I decided to get the inspire and bought it, 3 180 chargers and 3 extra batteries.    I got mine on a friday.  Flew the 4 batteries that afternoon.   Flew 4 the morning of saturday and saturday afternoon.  Sunday, I flew one battery and half way through the flight, I had a battery  error.  Landed and smoke came from it and the connection between the battery and mainboard failed.    I had to send it in.    Up until that point, if flew just as the phantom 3 but much faster.  I could follow and pass cars.   The video quality is the same as the phantom.   It has lots of cool factor.       It sounds nicer in the air than the phantom.  The phantom sounds like a bee hive where the inspire is quieter and has a different sound.  More like a fan running.

Everything about the inspire is nice.  It's a nice piece of equipment and very fun to fly.  Video is phenominal just like the phantom 3.    I only did 1080P a@60 video because I hadn't spent enough time with it.  I was in the process of trying different modes and settings to see what looked best.      

Would I buy it again?  Not now.    I will not buy any more DJI products that I can't fix myself.  I include the phantom as something I can fix with parts you can find off ebay or dealers.   The inspire isn't something that you can fix unless you buy very pricey teardowns off of ebay.    So that means you have to send it in to DJI.     You have 7 days to use the inspire before your exchange/refund expires.  After 7 days, you go into a que for repairs and it goes to Torrance.  Evidently to a facility that is not capable of keeping up with demand.   So.   You mail it off...3-4 days.   They receive it but may not check it into their system for weeks.  Once it's checked in, 5-6 weeks repair time.   Then not included in that is testing phase which may take a week more.  Then 3-4 days shipped back to you.  If it's warranty, it's covered.  If you broke it, you foot the bill on labor and parts.

Do not buy from online sales.  They are in china and the support absolutely sucks.    But it from amazon, fullfilled by amazon.   That way you might get 30 days.  But I'm not sure on that.   Get your extras on amazon fullfilled by amazon.  In the case you get a bad battery or charger, you can get another very quickly and get refunded full price.    If you spend 2899 for the unit, you will want more batteries and 180 watt chargers.  One extra charger and one extra TB48 battery will run you 300 bucks.  So, You seen I had lots invested.   

Would I buy again..?  That's the important question.  Absolutely not.   It's not the product and some will come and say yes based upon the fact that they haven't had much problem.  But those who have delt with immature online sales help and support, have some discomfort involved.  The repair process adds a lot to the cost of owning one of these.   The 8 week wait for repairs kills it. Especially if you order one at the first of the summer.  Summer will be over when you get it back if you break it.    I opted for a refund and support could not tell me when I'd get my money back.   I had to file a paypal dispute and they have not commented on the sale.   So Paypal will rule in my favor shortly.      There lackluster customer service ruined the deal for me and I am SOOOO happy I opted for the refund.    The experience I had removed all the shininess and gloss that the inspire brought.   

In 6 months or so, they probably will have an inspire 2.   I had a dealer spill some information.    It may have two cameras.  One for the operator and one for the gimbal control.  May have longer landing gear to land with SLR cameras on a gimbal.  Probably revision on the light bridge to offer two video feeds.   Better motors.  you would have to to carry an SLR camera and larger gimbal.   Which will make it faster if you just use the standard camera and gimbal.  And maybe have the ability to attach something to the bottom for the ability to add cargo.   

So, I'd wait.   6 months wont kill you.  By that time, they should be moved to their larger facility and should have more employees to move repairs faster.    There currently is no onlinse sales phone number.  So you can't call and speak with a person.  I wouldn't buy from the online store.    You basically have to wait 24 hours between emails because of the 9 hour difference in time.  And everytime I got a response, there was no help.  Just stupid salutations like "Best Regards"  which makes you feel worse because you go to them with a real problem and you feel just put into a useless loop.   

If you don't mind waiting 8 weeks for a repair.  Whether you break it or it breaks on it's own.....that's reality.   If you don't mind the wait...then go for it.  You might never break it.  Some have not.   My electrical failed at 3 days and the Customer service indifference to my concerns ruined the experience and I won't buy anything of this caliber until the dust settles and I see improvements.    And if I, as well as others that have had lousy customer service experience don't say anything about it here, then it will go unchecked and just remain sub par.    My opinion...get a phantom 3.    It's about 15-20 MPH slower.  Batteries are cheaper.     You get 13-15 minutes with the inspire to 30% battery 15-18 with the phantom.  Video is the same.   Chargers are cheaper.   You can find all sorts of parts to repair them.    3,000 is a lot of money.   A company has to deserve it based upon two things.   Product quality and customer service.    DJI fails on the latter and the former....the inspire is just about perfect.   But not good enough for me to keep it with the CS I received.  I felt like a burden to the system when I called into Torrance.   Some folks will say yes.   Ask them if they have had to deal with a repair.   If I spend 4,000 on an inapire and accessories....I demand better response.   This isn't a toy in my book.   It's like buying a new car.    YMMV
2015-6-18
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Farnk666
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Certainly would - in fact will probably be purchasing a couple more once we've finished some feasibility testing at work.
Don't get too swayed by the majority of posts here - no platform is 100% sorted and there will always be issues.
I have 100+ flights now and only one issue which was pilot error - no regrets at all.

There are many areas where things could improve - but if you are diligent with your flight operations, learn as much as you can and are disciplined in how you fly you won't go wrong.

Having said that - be clear beforehand just what you require in terms of image quality and capability - as an integrated platform it is not an option to change over the camera to something better.
DJI may provide camera upgrade options later on, but don't assume that as part of your purchasing decision.  

Most importantly though - have fun, fly safe and be a positive example of the UAV community - we are all in this together!
2015-6-18
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mountmotor
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I LOVE my Inspire!!! It did crash within the week I bought it from a compass/drift glitch, but I got it replaced no questions asked, and that is what I think is the most important part...The only thing DJI needs to improve on is the turnaround times...It should be no more than two weeks. DJI is a big player now, so it's time to see the customer service shine
2015-6-18
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Skyrider
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2015-6-18
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Mike-the-cat
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Without any doubt. I've now logged over 400km of flying and have flown in three continents. It's a great bird, easy to fly. Stable in gusty winds. Good camera despite negative comments from some.
2015-6-18
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GrahamJ
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I've had about 50 flights.  Not as many as some of the guys on the forum.  But, they've all been 100% successfull.  I cringe everytime I read about the lack of customer support, and turn around times, thinking how lucky I'm that I have not had the need to go down that rabbit hole!

The I1 is definitly the most advanced piece of kit I've owned, and I love it!  The fact that the back-office is not up to the same level as the products they sell, is a legit problem to have - IN THE SHORT TERM - but, given how long it's already been, it seems DJI's own success have caught them with their pants down in a big way!

There is a less than glowing side to the product, I'm afraid.  We're still without some of the main features of this platform 6 months after it's release, which is concerning.

it's a pitty DJI is not now where they will be in 2 years.  I think it will be a greatly improved experience all round.
2015-6-18
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PeteGould
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Dozens of flights.  Not a single problem.  My two concerns about buying again:  (1) Make sure you understand the limitations of the camera and recording.  Video is heavily compressed H.264.  Don't expect to broadcast it.  Check out samples before making a buying decision.  It's fine for many people but for us professionals it's not, and since we preordered we didn't realize it.  (2) IF you have a problem that requires repair, there is only one repair facility, and that's in California.  Even after they move to new quarters and add staff, you still have to ship from wherever you are to California and back.
2015-6-18
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Abe
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I'd listen to InspirelessAggi, above. He is giving good advice. The Inspire was irresistible for most of us when it first came out, but after the initial joy wears off and you weigh your options more rationally, it is indeed nearing the end of its product lifecycle, is more than twice the cost of the nearly-as-capable Phantom 3 Pro, and is far more high maintenance and quirky than the Phantom 3. The Phantom is in its 3rd generation, the Inspire is in its 1st. I also believe there will soon be a significant price drop to make room for the next generation Inspire.

As for bad customer service, that is unfortunately true. If you have to send it in for any reason, it will be 8 weeks minimum before you see it again. But that applies regardless of whether you buy a Phantom or an Inspire.
2015-6-18
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 15:04
I'd listen to InspirelessAggi, above. He is giving good advice. The Inspire was irresistible for mos ...

Yea, no, don't know if I agree with your statement about a 6 month old platform nearing at the end of its product lifecycle!  While I can't fault many legit challenges that you or InspirelessAggi highlight, I really don't think the situation is nearly as damning as you both make it seem.  Support aside, nothing to-date beats the I1.  All things being equal, and if cost is not one's overriding driver, the I1 is bird to buy.
2015-6-19
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rsghowellnj
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I absolutely enjoy flying my I1 and would not hesitate to purchase another.  It has been rock solid and very reliable.  Yes some bugs in the beginning but gotten past them.  Handles amazing in high winds.  Great features and I feel it is "Best in Class".
2015-6-19
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petevandra
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Short answer is that I wouldn't hesitate buying the Inspire again. Have had over 70 flights without any problems.. Quite frankly I  don't take any notice of negative posts
2015-6-19
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cmontisano
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petevandra@msn. Posted at 2015-6-19 20:10
Short answer is that I wouldn't hesitate buying the Inspire again. Have had over 70 flights without  ...


Not even a question I would buy again, I know there is allot of people who had issues but if you look at the percentages its MAY not even be 1% (TOTAL GUESS ON MY PART) having issues DJI has allot of work still ahead of them but I know DJI will keep working towards a resolve for most issues. just think if they all were faulty this board would be slammed beyond use. instead its more of the one who had issues mostly post.
2015-6-19
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InspirelessAggi
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cmontisano Posted at 2015-6-19 21:09
Not even a question I would buy three or four, I know there is allot of people who had issues but  ...

Let's say a dozen of us are posting.   Then the repair center should be able to accommodate those needs from your perspective.  True that people with no problems won't post.  But what about those with problems whom don't post?  There's no stats either way.  But look at the system itself.   If only (hypothetically) 10 inspires have defects......and they are still overwhelmed.....then the system still stands to be improved.  I don't buy that argument that only broken inspire owners post.  I'd say it's 50/50 from what I see in the forums.    I purchased a 6,000 thermal scope.  Used it and didn't have any problems until it did.   It was picked up, replaced and was back at my door in a week.   Had it been any other way, that's the last thermal scope I'd buy.   Point is......after sale care is just as...if not more....important than the sale or product itself.  My take

I own a business.  If I saw people posting like some on the forum, I'd be calling and asking them in person....what can I do to make it right?   And if the customer said...take care of me and my product in a timely manner,  I'd bend over backwards.   People spending this type of money expect a higher standard of care...  And until that time comes.  I'm watching and waiting.  I'd recommend that the person whom started the thread take that advice.  He doesn't have to.. But he's been informed.  I'm not sugar coating anything based upon appearance of a product.   The phantom is a step down in performance but it does the same.  This forum "board" isn't a barometer.  It's a platform

2015-6-19
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houston
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I agree 100% with InspirelessAggi . I have had zero problems with my I1. Yes, I have had the occasional lost video signal but that is it. I crashed mine the first week I had had it, self inflicted and not fault of the I1. But as you will read inhere time and time again, the service process is, and I do mean this, the worst in any industry. Instead of solutions to this problem, all I hear is what they are going to do.

So you are faced with a catch 22 here. The product itself is a GREAT platform and performs wonderfully. The really question here is what is your intentions? Hobby, casual filming from time to time for hire, or are you looking to actually build a business out of this? If it is the latter, I would look elsewhere mainly because of the support. No professional can be 8 weeks without the very piece of equipment that makes his company money. If you are in a position to buy a second one then you are good.

There are quite a few new platforms about to hit the market that have some wonderful features, features that we were all promised but yet to have seen. There is one guy in here that is supposed to be receiving his 3DR "Solo" today and I cant wait to see what he has to say about it. There are pros and cons to buying a product that is ready to fly out of the box vs building one from a kit. from a kit, you can always get parts and fix it yourself with 7-10 days in most cases if not hours. Out of the box, well, with DJI, it's 8 weeks. Completely Unacceptable and a larger building is not going to fix the problem. There are a lot more things that need to changeand I am tired of still suffering from the early adopter bug.

Expecting a restoration of faith from DJI is looking more and more dismal every day.  This is truley a love hate relationship.
2015-6-19
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Abe
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GrahamJ Posted at 2015-6-19 18:14
Yea, no, don't know if I agree with your statement about a 6 month old platform nearing at the end ...

The reason I say it's approaching the end of its product lifecycle is based on DJI's history. Their product lifecycle has averaged 1 year, and at about 9 months they generally drop the price before introducing a new generation.

My inspire should be arriving today after 8 weeks of warranty "repair" that consisted of 7.5 weeks sitting in a box unattended and one day of evaluation where they decided to simply send me a brand new one. I also have a Phantom going through the same warranty repair process -- it's about 4 weeks into its wait. Given that reality (yes, things can and do go wrong with these complex products) and the giant price difference, I recommend buying a P3P and if something goes wrong, buy a backup while you wait 8 weeks for repair. It will still cost less than a single Inspire which definitely handles better in higher wind conditions and has retractable landing gear. But take note: the reason my Inspire went in for repair was that retractable landing gear stopped working after 3 weeks.

I am fully aware that there are many happy Inspire users that have had no problems. I was one of them for quite some time. But once something goes wrong and you are introduced to the repair process, your opinion begins to change. And if something goes wrong multiple times, as happened to me, all illusions of value go out the window.
2015-6-19
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cmontisano
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InspirelessAggi Posted at 2015-6-19 21:18
Let's say a dozen of us are posting.   Then the repair center should be able to accommodate those n ...


So tell me your facts how many Inspire 1 were sold? since I  really have no idea what this number is my 1% was a theory of example not proof, I know there is issues out there and there will be more im sure to come, maybe I will have the next flyaway or battery issue, but it has not happen to me yet, do I think any product is perfect no! do I think DJI could handle there business better YES, but I am very happy with my Inspire and (9)TB48 Batteries I fly as much as possible its just a hobby I am not a photographer but my wife loves it as she is a social media nut and love to share our pictures and videos with her followers. my opinion stands I would buy another unit again in heart beat. Also InspirelessAggie I mean no disrespect what so ever it sucks to spend 3K and have your unit fail. And DJI should have put in place before sales delivery's even started for better support services and repair services and have the ,man power to back it up and better return times and covered their problems with customers with new replacement units instead of fixing should have been done as well. this company has grow way to fast hopefully the service and support will get better in the future.
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 22:06
The reason I say it's approaching the end of its product lifecycle is based on DJI's history. Thei ...

Yes, I must agree to this reply, in that, nothing damages customer satisfaction like the absence of any!
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Yes, I must agree to this reply, in that, nothing damages customer satisfaction like the absence of any!
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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(I'm so sick of my replies being blocked!  Please rethink the filtering rules?
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 22:06
The reason I say it's approaching the end of its product lifecycle is based on DJI's history. Thei ...

Yes, I must agree to this reply, in that, nothing damages customer satisfaction like the absence of any!
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 22:06
The reason I say it's approaching the end of its product lifecycle is based on DJI's history. Thei ...

Yes, I must agree to this reply, in that, nothing damages customer satisfaction like the absence of any!
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 22:06
The reason I say it's approaching the end of its product lifecycle is based on DJI's history. Thei ...

Yes, I must agree to this reply, in that, nothing damages customer satisfaction like the absence of any support!
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 22:06
The reason I say it's approaching the end of its product lifecycle is based on DJI's history. Thei ...

Well mate, I tried to respond to you in ten different ways, but get blocked my the moderator each time!  Sorry, open dialogue not allowed on this site, I'm afraid.a
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 15:04
I'd listen to InspirelessAggi, above. He is giving good advice. The Inspire was irresistible for mos ...

Yes, I must agree to this reply, in that, nothing damages customer satisfaction like the absence of any!
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 22:06
The reason I say it's approaching the end of its product lifecycle is based on DJI's history. Thei ...

Yes, I must agree to this reply, in that, nothing damages satisfaction like the absence of support!
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 22:06
The reason I say it's approaching the end of its product lifecycle is based on DJI's history. Thei ...

You guys won't see this, but I've tried to edit my reply about 12 times already, and each time I get blocked.  I've already changed every sentence to sound 'positive', just to see if it will accep my post, but....nothing.
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 22:06
The reason I say it's approaching the end of its product lifecycle is based on DJI's history. Thei ...

Yes, I must agree to this reply, in that, nothing degrades satisfaction like the absence of support!
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Yes, I must agree to this reply, in that, nothing degrades satisfaction like the absence of support!
2015-6-19
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Abe
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GrahamJ Posted at 2015-6-19 23:01
You guys won't see this, but I've tried to edit my reply about 12 times already, and each time I g ...

Interesting... What causes the block? Someone reading your response or is it software monitoring key words? We seemed to be having a civil conversation. At least compared to the Phantom forums :-)
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 22:06
The reason I say it's approaching the end of its product lifecycle is based on DJI's history. Thei ...

Yes, I must agree to this reply, in that, customer satisfaction is important!
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 22:06
The reason I say it's approaching the end of its product lifecycle is based on DJI's history. Thei ...

Sorry, I've given up trying to respond to you.  I'm being blocked by the moderator rules, regardless of how I edit my response.  I even removed any word that they might consider to be negitive to the company or brand (although I'm always darefull with my replies), and still it gets blocked.  

Sorry.  Unfortunately, one will never get the full unabridged knowledge on thus forum, I'm afraid.
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 22:06
The reason I say it's approaching the end of its product lifecycle is based on DJI's history. Thei ...

Sorry, I've given up trying to respond to you.  I'm being blocked by the moderator rules, regardless of how I edit my response.  I even removed any word that they might consider to be negitive to the company or brand (although I'm always darefull with my replies), and still it gets blocked.  

Sorry.  Unfortunately, one will never get the full unabridged knowledge on thus forum, I'm afraid.
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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GrahamJ Posted at 2015-6-19 23:13
Sorry, I've given up trying to respond to you.  I'm being blocked by the moderator rules, regardle ...

Holy Mac...and they published this, and not ,y constructive response?  Maybe I used the words "customer satisfaction" to much?
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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Abe Posted at 2015-6-19 22:06
The reason I say it's approaching the end of its product lifecycle is based on DJI's history. Thei ...

(Trying to get published). Yes, agree.  Cus sat is the opposite of good.  Must stand ground that product is great.  (See...I said great!). There's many of us that have only happy happy with bird...and if continue to be happy happy, then bird = best buy.  (Opposite of fortunate) is fact that bird gets trained with cus sat.

(Let's see if this version gets published?)
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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GrahamJ Posted at 2015-6-19 23:18
(Trying to get published). Yes, agree.  Cus sat is the opposite of good.  Must stand ground that p ...

LOL....success!  Stick it to the man!
2015-6-19
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AllanVB
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I own 2 Inspire 1s and have had a few problems.  Support is slow, but  I would buy again.  DJI need to live up to their promises now, not next week or next month.  
2015-6-19
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GrahamJ
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GrahamJ Posted at 2015-6-19 23:18
LOL....success!  Stick it to the man!

At least I got a ton of points for all my attempts at posting my actual response!  YES!  
2015-6-19
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