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4K - My First Phantom 3 flights over SW Florida
1056 19 2016-1-18
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don.sausa
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Thoughts ...
I bought a Parrot Bebop last Christmas and expected to see a major difference between DJI's Phantom 3 and Bebop due to the price difference.  After carefully reading all the how to's and video tutorials I could gobble, I was off and ready to fly.

DJI Phantom 3 Professional beat all my expectations: the controls are top notch, the range is superb, and the video quality is so much better.  Even using the same resolution, the hardware-based stabilization is much better than Parrot's software-based stabilization. Sometimes the flow of the video would get querky in the Bebop because of a software issue or not able to compensate for a shake (e.g. near the beach). Under similar wind conditions or turbulence, the Phantom 3 simply took it like a champ and recorded smooth video.

Here's the video of my first couple flights:



Locations:
Southwest Florida (Fort Myers, Sanibel areas)

Highlights:
  • Tested low level flights over pond
  • Tested flying it over beach area in the morning
  • Tested, nervously, some fireworks during New Years
  • Tested near bridge (got some compass errors, which is normal)


2016-1-18
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PolakPola
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What a great video. Very nice area, smooth flight and great edit.
2016-1-18
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wmw1490
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Looks great!
2016-1-18
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ksunsingh
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amazing video! what settings did you use? (contrast, sharpness, log etc) Such great clear shots.
2016-1-18
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iastbo
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Love the way the reflected sky stays static whilst the land moves in the early shots. Sanibel is one of my favourite places, last visited in the year of Katrina from the UK.

Kind regards, Ian.
2016-1-18
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prescottc
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Very good. Did you use any ND filters? Did you do much in Post?
2016-1-18
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don.sausa
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prescottc Posted at 2016-1-19 05:24
Very good. Did you use any ND filters? Did you do much in Post?

I didn't do much in post. I just clicked 'auto tone' on each clip. I'm using ND8 filters.
2016-1-18
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Gamerfanatic
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The fireworks we're crazy! I was thinking about doing that on New Years but decided not to. Was it scary seeing them explode that close to the drone? Great video.
2016-1-18
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don.sausa
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ksunsingh Posted at 2016-1-19 03:06
amazing video! what settings did you use? (contrast, sharpness, log etc) Such great clear shots.

Settings:
* Changed AWB to cloudy.
* Night ISO was 1600.
* N8 filters on most of the day time shots
* No changes to sharpness or contrast
* Most of the day time shots were DLOG
* Used 'auto tone' in post

Most of the day time shots were right after sun rise (pond, beach, etc) or right before sunset (like the Sanibel bridge). The sun, natural lighting and the camera did pretty much most of the work for me.

Thanks for viewing!

-Don
2016-1-18
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prescottc
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don.sausa Posted at 2016-1-18 21:38
I didn't do much in post. I just clicked 'auto tone' on each clip. I'm using ND8 filters.

Cool. I am going to invest in some ND filters.
2016-1-18
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don.sausa
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Gamerfanatic Posted at 2016-1-19 05:42
The fireworks we're crazy! I was thinking about doing that on New Years but decided not to. Was it s ...

LOL yeah, there's always an element of fear. We light lanterns and fireworks every year so I did a POI approach around the launch area.  So it's constantly moving around that area. The first set was really close, so I raised it to about 240-300 feet on the second round.

Thanks for viewing!

-Don
2016-1-18
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theronmalone
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Love all the views. Great video.
2016-1-18
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Wee Joe
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Thought your video was brilliant!
2016-1-18
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kevans77
First Officer
Flight distance : 2017162 ft
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Thanks for sharing that great footage
2016-1-18
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DJI-Patrick
Captain

Hong Kong
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Impressive ! Incredibly beautiful .
2016-1-18
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horizonstar
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prescottc Posted at 2016-1-18 13:46
Cool. I am going to invest in some ND filters.

You don't need ND filters for day time shot. You only use them for long exposure at day time. For day time shooting, all you need to do is decreasing the aperture  or increasing the shutter speed to limit the light coming in.
2016-1-18
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don.sausa
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horizonstar Posted at 2016-1-19 15:57
You don't need ND filters for day time shot. You only use them for long exposure at day time. For d ...

I like ND filters because it gives you another level of control without having to fudge around settings as your drone is in the air eating up battery power.

Photography: Sample of why ND filters work
For photography, here's a decent sample of what ND filters can do and the level of control it can have: ND filters

Videos: Sample of how ND filters work vs plain exposure adjustments
For videos, here's a good sample by Nikon on the use of ND filters: Video & ND filters
The Video Mode advice: ND filters are more essentials in videos



2016-1-19
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horizonstar
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don.sausa Posted at 2016-1-19 19:13
I like ND filters because it gives you another level of control without having to fudge around sett ...

The only function of ND filter is to block the light. In 2 occasions you need ND filter : 1. Long exposure at day time. In most common cases, you need long exposure when you shoot waterfalls, or waves, or remove moving people in crowded areas. Obviously, drone is not very good holding the camera totally still.

2. You need bokeh effect, which means blurry background. You need the largest aperture to do it, like f2.8 or larger. In sunny day, there will be too much light coming to the sensor. So you need ND filter to block the excessive light. But with drone film or photography,  you need long dof, so ND filter not necessary.

So basically, there is no use of ND filter for drone at all.

2016-1-19
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don.sausa
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horizonstar Posted at 2016-1-20 10:51
The only function of ND filter is to block the light. In 2 occasions you need ND filter : 1. Long e ...

I've found less than ideal smooth footage in normal video cameras and on the drone when you try to compensate for bright scenes with higher shutter speeds instead of using ND filters. It's definitely much smoother with the ND filters on. We both agree a neutral density filter slows down the shutter speed -- it also reduces the blur of a moving object. You can see some of that in this sampling: http://forum.dji.com/thread-31990-1-1.html

At any rate, thanks for stopping by the post. Hope you enjoyed the video.
2016-1-19
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horizonstar
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don.sausa Posted at 2016-1-19 23:56
I've found less than ideal smooth footage in normal video cameras and on the drone when you try to  ...

Thank you for the link. Now I learned that ND filter can get rid of the propeller shadow. Probably another function for ND filter, never knew that.

Please don't get me wrong. Your video is excellent shot and edited, I really enjoy it.
2016-1-20
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