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The 3DR Solo is smart because it allows the user to completely focus on what their camera is capturing and, for all intents and purposes, forget about flying the drone. You can set the Solo on a pre-determined flight, and simply focus on capturing great film. This drone is the 'Smart Drone' because 3D Robotics have integrated 1 GHz computers in both the drone itself, and the radio controller, making for one of the best aerial photography experience available. The Solo also comes with the usual safety and support features that we now expect from a 3DR product.
The Solo was designed and created with the aim of improving the aerial photography experience of every single user; be you a complete beginner, or a seasoned professional. This means that 3DR has created one of the best drones on the market concerning flight dynamics, but they have also factored in a way of allowing first-time flyers to capture amazing footage. The done experiance is not just about the list of features and specs (although the solo does have some impressive specs), what makes a good drone is the ability for it not to break your workflow or become an obstruction to you achieving the perfect shot. 3DR have dedicated the design of the Solo with thousands of hours of testing and user feedback to make for a aerial photography system that is seamless and intuative to make it easy to capture the shot you want, first and every time.
Let's start with the controller of this Smart Drone. This controller itself it actually smarter than most drones on the market today with an in-built 1 GHz computer. This obviously brings much increased processing power to this drone, simplifying flights and giving the user unprecedented control of both the aircraft and the camera.
This controller is also one of the easiest to use out there, therefore allowing complete beginners to take the reins. The look and feel of this controller is inspired by popular video controllers, thereby feeling instantly familiar to everybody; even those who have never held a drone radio controller before. The ease of use of the Solo controller can be experienced through the dedicated buttons for one-touch automatic flight manoeuvres, including auto take-off and landing, auto return home and land, and pause.
The Solo controller has been designed specifically with aerial photography in mind. You can easily access controls to change the camera tilt position, the speed, take a photo and even stop and start your GoPro recording during flight. And you can do all this while a HD view of the scenery is being streamed directly to your mounted mobile device. This is accomplished via the built-in WiFi in the controller that is powered by the computer. This computer also powers a HDMI port in the Solo controller that allows the user to broadcast live pictures from your GoPro onto just about any screen you wish.
When you're dishing out quite a sum of money for one of the best drones on the market, you want your purchase to be safe. The Solo controller therefore has a dedicated 'Pause' button that brings Solo to a complete mid-air stop; allowing you to get your bearings and protect your quadcopter. And you've heard of an aeroplane's black box, well now Solo has its very own 'black box' in the form of the 1 GHz computer in-built in the controller. This saves valuable flight data on 500 parameters to its internal memory, 20 times a second.
Introducing Smart Shots
3D Robotics are introducing the notion of 'Smart Shots' with this new quadcopter. These are a series of different shots that you set up before flight. Once done, simply tap 'play' and Solo will fly through the process outlined and capture the kinds of shot that even professional cinema pilots can't match. There are four Smart Shots available to the user: Cable Cam, Orbit, Selfie and Follow.
This is the mode for those of you who want to focus entirely on the shot you're capturing, rather than being distracted by having to keep the quad in the air. In this mode, you simply lock Solo onto a virtual cable in the air while you're free to pan, tilt and move your camera in the way that you thinks gets the best picture. Even if you're fairly inexperienced with capturing awesome shots, Solo can memorize the shot at each end point of the 'cable' and fly itself and effortlessly work the camera for you; working as smoothly and evenly as a seasoned pro.
It's also a moments work to set this incredible process up. You simply use the live view on your mobile screen to guide Solo to your preferred start and end points. The quad is then locked on this cable between the two points, and you're free to focus on capturing awesome shots. Or you can simply press 'play' and sit back and admire as Solo handles the camerawork. Capturing incredible shots couldn't be easier!
This is a mode that does exactly what the name suggests; it orbits around an object of focus to get an amazing wrap-around shot
|Flight time (Minutes):||25|
|Max flight speed (m/s):||24.6|
|Climb speed (m/s):||0|
|Descent speed (m/s):||0|
|Battery model:||14.8V LiPo 5200mAh|
|Camera FOV (Degrees):||0|
|Gimbal included:||Hard mount included - optional 3 axis gimbal available seperately|
|Gimbal details:||Hard mount with data connection allows live stream and control of camera from ground through tablet app|
|Controller transmitting distance (m):||800|
|Controller power supply:||2600mAh rechargeable battery- 4 hour battery life. Extra long life battery available seperately|
|Controller video output port:||HDMI out|
|Controller mobile device holder:||Yes|