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Is it still worth getting a drone?
5430 21 2017-11-8
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AmeerAlly
lvl.1
Hungary
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Hey guys,

I'll keep it short.

I've been making videos for a long time now (mainly travel videos) that I upload to Vimeo.  All hobbyist, nothing professional.

I've been umming and ahhing about getting a Mavic Pro this year but I've been holding back...

Basically, I keep reading about all these updates; first the new Drone Registration rule where DJI hampers the drone until you provide all your details, and secondly this new scheme whereby they are providing trackers to police and airports that allow them to see which drones are flying where.

I'm all for safety and am certainly not one of these idiots who would want to fly my potential drone into an airport or over a school yard...but I am a bit concerned.

e.g.

What if I want to fly my drone in a quiet park at 5AM when no one is around?

What if I inadvertently fly into an area where drones are marked as illegal?

With all this tracking technology and the fact that we have to offer up our information, isn't it possible and likely that we may innocently pop out for a day and film here and there with our drone, and suddenly have a letter from the police come through our door?

I re-iterate, I'm all for safety etc. but I think we can all agree that over-policing and heavy levels of litigation are (in my mind) really restricting and ruining the hobby?  Plenty of people have flown safely in the past in areas that are now considered no-fly areas.

So would you say it's still worth getting a drone and I'm just being paranoid, or do you think that the hobby has been strangled by bureacracy (which DJI appears to be assisting in some ways)?

Personally, I'd use this drone for filming beaches, landscapes in the countryside etc. but I don't want to spend £1500 on a drone kit only for it to basically be unusable because I'm not allowed to fly it anywhere...

Many thanks in advance for your replies

2017-11-8
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Montfrooij
Captain
Flight distance : 1698205 ft
Netherlands
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No one knows when legislation will change. Only that it will get more strict someday.
Inevitable when more and more people start using them.
But what that will mean for 'us' I don't know.
It is for sure one of my doubts about getting one in the first place.
2017-11-8
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Time2Party
Captain
Flight distance : 169314 ft
Belgium
Online

Just buy one and fly it, its a nice bird to have if you use it in the right way
2017-11-8
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hallmark007
Captain
Flight distance : 4724977 ft
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Ireland
Online

When you first want to get and drive a car, driving lesson, driving test, Tax , Insurance, parking fees, Parking fines, speed limits, speeding fines, new Tyres, service, traffic, bad drivers, crash, expense, petrol, etc etc, its a wonder we have so many cars on the road.
2017-11-8
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M.C. Pilot
Captain
Flight distance : 8684557 ft
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United States
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What if I want to fly my drone in a quiet park at 5AM when no one is around?
By all means go for it, I fly regularly early in the morning.

What if I inadvertently fly into an area where drones are marked as illegal?

That would be an airport so you should be very aware of local airports. In general if you're in an area you shouldn't be in then take a quick u-turn and get out quick.

With all this tracking technology and the fact that we have to offer up our information, isn't it possible and likely that we may innocently pop out for a day and film here and there with our drone, and suddenly have a letter from the police come through our door?

Not likely unless you've intentionally did something like take flight in an area where there's an emergency for example. You clearly should not be flying in that area.

I re-iterate, I'm all for safety etc. but I think we can all agree that over-policing and heavy levels of litigation are (in my mind) really restricting and ruining the hobby?  Plenty of people have flown safely in the past in areas that are now considered no-fly areas.

Be a responsible, safe and use common-sense when flying as a pilot and you'll be just fine.

So would you say it's still worth getting a drone and I'm just being paranoid, or do you think that the hobby has been strangled by bureacracy (which DJI appears to be assisting in some ways)?

Having a little paranoia/fear comes with the terrritory especially as neophyte so no worries. Having a little fear I find helps me to keep me in check and not become overly confident. Becoming overly confident can spell trouble.

Personally, I'd use this drone for filming beaches, landscapes in the countryside etc. but I don't want to spend £1500 on a drone kit only for it to basically be unusable because I'm not allowed to fly it anywhere...

Once you've picked up the MP, you'll be I think pretty impressed with the performance. Enjoy the MP and forum.   
2017-11-8
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QuadKid
Captain
Flight distance : 482349 ft
United States
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The MP is great as far as portability, you may want to start out using something Like the Phantom 3 Pro, Best Buy is selling them for around $600 USD. I Have a P3P ( No more updates and flies rock solid ), a Mavic which so far has been pretty good although it doesn't have many flights yet, and a P4P which I only use for those special shoots where I want a better camera variable. One thing I did invest in was the Crystal Sky, haven't had a single app crash and have been using it for all 3 birds.

At the end of the day, the Go4 birds can be finicky you just need to pay attention and either refrain from or go for updates as they become available. Read the release notes. As the technology progresses eventually the birds since P4 will be more stable as did the P3P.
2017-11-8
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StanfordWebbie
Captain
Flight distance : 178018 ft
United States
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Agree with hallmark007.  If you drive a car, all the things you are concerned about are present.  That said, I'm surprised that no one pointed out that the law requiring registration was cancelled for those who do it as a hobby and not for money.  I bought my Mavic a couple of weeks before that happened and have my registration and phone number boldly displayed on my quad.  I just make sure that I follow the rules, have read the manual several times, and checked that my home's liability insurance has me covered.  For non-home owners, you can buy liability insurance for a pretty reasonable price.
2017-11-8
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AG0N-Gary
Captain
Flight distance : 659898 ft
United States
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Our laws (registration) have no bearing on him.  He's in Hungary.
2017-11-8
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Javey
Second Officer
Flight distance : 503458 ft
United States
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Mine won't let me fly in no fly zones near airports.  I was worried too and you're right that legislation has been increasing, but I still fly and have a lot of people asking me about my drones, but not in a bad way.  They are truly interested.
2017-11-8
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Montfrooij
Captain
Flight distance : 1698205 ft
Netherlands
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StanfordWebbie Posted at 2017-11-8 17:43
Agree with hallmark007.  If you drive a car, all the things you are concerned about are present.  That said, I'm surprised that no one pointed out that the law requiring registration was cancelled for those who do it as a hobby and not for money.  I bought my Mavic a couple of weeks before that happened and have my registration and phone number boldly displayed on my quad.  I just make sure that I follow the rules, have read the manual several times, and checked that my home's liability insurance has me covered.  For non-home owners, you can buy liability insurance for a pretty reasonable price.

In Europe things are likely to change, not in favor of hobbyist flyers.
More and strict rules emerge in EU countries.
2017-11-8
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Hexacopter
Second Officer

Australia
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With dji products this is not a problem (unless they are hacked!).
Users of non-dji multi-rotor systems cause many problems as they do not have geofencing,  or simply do not care/know about safety.
It is quite easy to build a multi-rotor craft nowadays and to cause panic or bad publicity due to ignorance, stupidity or to be malicious.
When something bad or an 'incident' happens the media always use a stock photo of a Phantom or an Inspire even if it was only a garbage bag blowing past the windscreen of an airliner, we all still get the blame!
So if you see an idiot misbehaving with a multi-rotor then call them out and educate them to the rules or if they get a bit aggro just call the police.
It is for all our interests to get the idiots off the airspace.

* Hex *
2017-11-9
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A CW
Captain
Flight distance : 11526437 ft
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United Kingdom
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The DJI Mavic has geo fencing built in so it will automatically stop the drone flying into an NFZ and even prevent you from taking off. Personal details are securely held under the data protection act. It would be illegal for any organisation to share your personal information without your consent unless you committed an alleged criminal act.
There are many apps that provide excellent up-to-date information on where you can and can not fly. I use NATS drone assist in the UK which is perfect.
Use your common sense. If you’re near an airport, military base, prison, police station, a fire, school etc then best not to fly there and if in the US keep away from national parks and conservation areas too. That said, there are many places where you can fly safely - keep the drone under 400’ AGL and away from residential areas and you’ll be fine. The Mavic is an amazing quad when flown sensibly - legislation changes all the time and it may even go the other way and start to be relaxed as society begins to understand and accept drones. Buy one, learn to fly it and enjoy it!  
2017-11-9
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DocAraxá
First Officer
Flight distance : 202283 ft
Brazil
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Dear AmeerAlly,

For me, M.C. Pilot said everything.
For sure you are in Hungary. It is diferent from USA and Brazil (my country), but you cannot live feeding all fears authorities make us believe!
Buy one, fly safe and be happy.
2017-11-9
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Mikedefieslife
lvl.3
Flight distance : 6627 ft
Greece
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Sounds like you are in the UK (since you listed the price in £) and there the drone laws aren't too draconian, so yes probably still worth getting one.
2017-11-9
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fans61b19400
lvl.1

United Kingdom
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Thanks for all the detailed replies guys.

It’s good to see that we are part of a very well informed and helpful community .

I’m going to go ahead and pull the trigger on one.

Next up will be figuring out what insurance etc. to buy, but will cross that bridge when I get to it.

My main concern was basically the police being able to ‘see’ and record my drone flights followed by an angry letter/fine through the post.

I’m based in the UK.  I’m on holiday in Budapest atm, hence the Hungary location :p
2017-11-9
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FatherXmas
Captain
Flight distance : 4058619 ft
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United States
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M.C. Pilot Posted at 2017-11-8 15:38
What if I want to fly my drone in a quiet park at 5AM when no one is around?
By all means go for it, I fly regularly early in the morning.

Great answers for all the OP's concerns!
2017-11-9
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Mianmach
lvl.2
Flight distance : 447293 ft
Mexico
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I've been making travel videos with the Mavic Pro. I've taken it to Europe, Asia and USA from Mexico and most of the times in airports don't notice I even have it, as it is so small. I guess it just camouflages with my photo gear. But! I always make sure I have proper registration and to be aware of drone laws to my destination country, same as the countries I might be doing stops. This is mainly about doing your homework and make sure you don't break any rules. One time I was flying in restricted area and never knew about it, as they didn't have any online information about it, only when walking in the area afterwards I noticed signs about it. that thaught me a lesson, ALWAYS walk through the place I want to fly over. Just keep reading and asking about. Keep yourself updated and trust me... you will never regret buying a Mavic for travel videos
2017-11-9
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DJI Susan
Administrator

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The above discussion make sense. It's a good habit to investigate before investing. Feel free to contact us if you have more questions.
2017-11-9
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Ameer Allybocus
lvl.1

United Kingdom
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Thanks for all the detailed replies guys.

It’s good to see that we are part of a very well informed and helpful community .

I’m going to go ahead and pull the trigger on one.

Next up will be figuring out what insurance etc. to buy, but will cross that bridge when I get to it.

My main concern was basically the police being able to ‘see’ and record my drone flights followed by an angry letter/fine through the post.

I’m based in the UK.  I’m on holiday in Budapest atm, hence the Hungary location :p
2017-11-10
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Bekaru Tree
Captain
Flight distance : 14348235 ft
South Africa
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my short answer is: YES, get the drone. Stay away from cops and places you should not fly in. Cops are not likely to come looking for you if you do not cause problems by flying in illegal places or unless you become famous with many followers like Casey Neistat (without flying permit)
2017-11-10
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A CW
Captain
Flight distance : 11526437 ft
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United Kingdom
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I’m in the UK too - go to FPV UK website where you can join on line with a sub of £20 a year and this includes £5,000,000 of public liability insurance to fly battery operated model aircraft for recreational purposes anywhere in Europe. They will email you back your membership details and a certificate of the insurance underwritten by RSA which you can print off and put in the bag to show who needs to know when out flying. Great peace of mind from a legit, regulated UK based organisation.
2017-11-10
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ShadyDealer
First Officer
Flight distance : 644432 ft
United Kingdom
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If you stopped and worried about everything, not just a potential drone purchase...you'd probably never buy anything. Get one and enjoy the ride. You'll get some incredible footage.
2017-11-11
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