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Discussion in 'Pilots Lounge / Off Topic' started by lowoctane, Jan 26, 2018.
Besides DJI, who's left in the drone game?
Autel... Looking forward to the EVO
Parrot is still in it. They make a nice product as well. Besides the Spark, I own a Parrot Bebop 2, and a Parrot Swing. I also own a Hubsan 501s. Hubsan still makes a quality drone as well. (That was my 1st drone) Also the Sky Viper is a very good toy grade drone. I have one of those as well. Bought it for my son. Slap an FPV camera on it and it could be a great beginner FPV racer.
Parrot has also come out with the Bebop 2 Power now, too. It's basically a blacked out Bebop 2 with longer flight time and waypoint missions is sometimes included with a promo code.
Believe it or not Yuneec has released an updated 520H 6 rotor, a fixed wing FPV, and a small racing quad, so it looks like they are trying to come back as well.
But they all are suffering from massive cu-backs/layoffs:
Parrot cutting a third of drone staff in latest industry downturn
Autel Robotics USA lay off US sales and marketing staff - sUAS News - The Business of Drones
How is the Hubsan in comparison to the Spark?
No real comparison there. The Hubsan is a good drone but way overpriced. The camera is not stabilized and the follow me mode always results in a "toilet bowl" effect. If I had to choose between the 2, I'd pick the Spark hands down. Hubsan's are very fidgety and they land hard. They also don't stop their props on landing and they will mess you up if you get any body parts too close. I landed mine a little hard once and now the camera board is shot. It will still record and take pictures but the FPV screen on the controller is just black with telemetry.
I like the Parrot Bebop 2 because if it's durability. I crashed it once pretty hard and had to replace the bottom end but it was easy and the parts are readily available.
I love the Spark though and somewhere in this forum is a thread that contains a modded DJI Go 4 app that really unlocks a lot more features on the Spark. Basically turning it into a "Mini-Mavic" or dare I say it, a "Budget Mavic Air?" I have logged almost 300 flights on my Spark and about 200+ on the Bebop 2.
Thanks for that! Mini Mavic huh? Do you recall the title? You have peaked my interest!
Can't remember the exact name but if you search for DJI Go 4 Modded you'll probably find it. There are 2 links to the app. One is the full version and one is a lite version. They are both actually full versions though. I have used the regular one and everything works except the follow me mode. Use the regular active track there instead. And OTG works too.
Autel seems to gain traction again.
There are at least two successful and cooperating companies for commercial drones in Munich, “Ascending Technologies” (now part of Intel) and “Quantum Systems” (a partner of Autel Robotics). Autel does have a research facility in Munich too (Ismaning). The 3D obstacle rerouting technology in the new Autel Evo seems to come from there.
I see a chance that Autel develops into a China-Munich-Intel counterweight to DJI. If they can deliver the Evo ...
Well let's hope so...a little competition is always good. Though DJI has a TREMEDOUS "head start" over the others.
Yuneec. I really like Yuneec and had their Q500 and Typhoon H with realsense. I only wish their drones were as reliable as DJIs. I am considering buying the Typhoon H Pro. They have some very cool features. I like that the camera can rotate 360 degrees. I like the camera can operated independently of the drone. It really helps in creating some very nice and smooth video. Because of this feature, you only need "sensors" in the front of the drone as it can always face the direction its flying. It is/was one of the most stable drones I've flown especially in high winds. It can lose a motor/prop and still fly (yes, that rarely happens in this day and age for any drone).
Their customer service is OUTSTANDING. I wish I didn't have to find out but I did. When I had a serious problem, they had me ship it back and they'd repair and turn it around with a week. I had to send it back three times and every time the total time including shipping to getting it back was ~2 weeks. I didn't have to argue or fight with them for the repair. Thing is I had to do it 3 times. Only at the end did they finally sort out the Typhoon H. I think similar growing pains that DJI had in the beginning.
And when you buy the Typhoon H, the remote is amazing and really good. No need to buy a separate device like an Ipad or use your phone, it has a very bright screen. Heck they even include a screen shade.
On the downside, it did have problems early on that were solved with later generations...