DJI Spark

“We’ve got something really special to show you today” was the first words I heard while watching DJI’s live product announcement event in New York City. DJI wanted to bring personal storytelling to us in a new way. That new way is the DJI Spark. It’s a tiny selfie drone and it’s DJI’s smallest, smartest and simplest drone to date. It comes in multiple colors, fits in the palm of your hand and weighs less than a can of soda. It’s so small it actually makes the DJI Mavic look HUGE!

DJI Spark Unboxing: Powerfully Compact and Gesture Smart

DJI Spark Unboxing: Powerfully Compact and Gesture Smart

Unboxing the new DJI Spark $499 is a pleasure. It comes with a very convenient carrying case that’s molded to fit the Spark perfectly, propellers and all.

DJI Spark unboxing

The first thing you’ll notice is Spark’s tiny size for a drone. It’s impressive that DJI was able to pack so much technology into something so small and that fits in the palm of your hand so easily.

DJI Spark size

Spark is very lightweight, but still feels ultra-premium and high quality. This is something I’ve always valued in DJI products; they never skimp on build quality or materials, it always looks and feels premium!

After removing Spark from the box, you’ll see a set of four propellers, as well as a backup set. They have color indicators which make them quick and easy to install. Just press them on the drone arm and turn and they lock into place. Also, the propellers themselves are fold-able. This means after removal you’re able to fold them up for easy storage. You don’t even have to worry about them bending or breaking.

DJI Spark propellers
DJI Spark props

DJI are also offering propeller guards with Spark. Like the propellers themselves, these feature color indicators and are super easy to attach. Just fasten them around the motor arm, and then close the clasp to lock them into place. The propeller guards not only protect Spark’s propellers but most importantly people and objects in the vicinity as well. Props to DJI as they managed to make these look cool!

DJI Spark propeller guards

The box also contains the 1,480 mAh battery and charger, a USB charging cable, and charging adapter. For an upgrade, pick up DJI’s charging hub, which allows you to charge up to three batteries in sequence or simultaneously. Again, very cool design. Pull the side-tabs to unlock the battery from the drone, and slide it into the charging slot. Like all new DJI drones, Spark batteries are both beautiful and ergonomic, with LEDs that to indicate battery life and status clearly. Flight times on a single charge are advertised at an impressive 16 minutes.


DJI Spark battery
DJI Spark battery
DJI Spark battery

A key feature of Spark is the camera. It features a 2-axis mechanical gimbal — an incredible feat for its tiny size. The camera captures 12 MP photos, and records 1080p 30fps video footage.

DJI Spark camera

Shot by DJI Spark
(Shot by DJI Spark)
DJI Spark photo
(Shot by DJI Spark)

At the front are the obstacle avoidance sensors. These are convenient to have as they let you fly with confidence. At the rear hidden behind the drone’s cover are a Micro USB port and Micro SD card slot. All your photos and videos can be saved to your SD card in full resolution.

DJI Spark sensor
DJI Spark

 

DJI Spark rubber pads

In summary it look like an amazing piece of technology that will make lots of people smile!  They only bad thing that will turn off some folks is the all up weight, at 300gr, it is above the FAA and TC limit of 250gr to be able to be bellow the 250gr. limit.

Specs:


AIRCRAFT

Max Ascent Speed 9.8 ft/s (3 m/s) in Sport Mode without wind
Max Descent Speed 9.8 ft/s (3 m/s) in Auto Landing Mode
Max Speed 31 mph (50 kph) in Sport Mode without wind
Max Service Ceiling Above Sea Level 13,123 feet (4,000 m)
Max Flight Time 16 minutes (no wind at a consistent 12.4 mph (20 kph))
Max Hovering Time 15 minutes (no wind)
Operating Temperature Range 32° to 104° F (0° to 40° C)
Satellite Positioning Systems GPS/GLONASS
Hover Accuracy Range Vertical:
+/- 0.1 m (when Vision Positioning is active) or +/-0.5 m
Horizontal:
+/- 0.3 m (when Vision Positioning is active) or +/-1.5 m
Transmitter Power (EIRP) 2.4 GHz
FCC: 25 dBm; CE: 18 dBm; SRRC: 18 dBm
5.8 GHz
FCC: 27 dBm; CE: 14 dBm; SRRC: 27 dBm
Operating Frequency 2.400 – 2.483 GHz; 5.725 – 5.825 GHz
Takeoff Weight 300 g
Dimensions 143×143×55 mm
Diagonal Distance (propellers excluded) 170 mm
3D SENSING SYSTEM

Obstacle Sensing Range 1-16 ft (0.2 – 5 m)
Operating Environment Surface should be larger than 20×20 cm and enable diffuse reflection, with reflection rate >20% (eg. wall, tree, people)
CAMERA

Sensor 1/2.3″ CMOS
Effective pixels: 12 MP
Lens FOV 81.9° 25 mm (35 mm format equivalent) f/2.6
(shooting range: 2 m to ∞)
ISO Range Video: 100-3200
Photo: 100-1600
Electronic Shutter Speed 2-1/8000 s
Image Size 3968×2976
Still Photography Modes Single Shot
Burst Shooting: 3 frames
Auto Exposure Bracketing (AEB): 3 bracketed frames at 0.7 EV bias
Interval: 2/3/5/7/10/15/20/30/60 s
Video Resolution FHD: 1920×1080 30p
Max Video Bitrate 24 Mbps
Supported File Systems FAT32 (≤ 32 GB)
Photo Format JPEG
Video Format MP4 (MPEG-4 AVC/H.264)
REMOTE CONTROLLER

Operating Frequency 2.412-2.462 GHz; 5.745-5.825 GHz
Max Transmission Distance 2.412 – 2.462 GHz (unobstructed, free of interference)
FCC: 1.2 mi (2 km); CE: 0.3 mi (500 m); SRRC: 0.3 mi (500 m)
5.745 – 5.825 GHz (unobstructed, free of interference)
FCC: 1.2 mi (2 km); CE: 0.18 mi (300 m); SRRC: 0.7 mi (1.2 km)
Operating Temperature Range 32° to 104° F (0° to 40° C)
Battery 2970 mAh
Transmitter Power (EIRP) 2.4 GHz
FCC: ≤26 dBm; CE: ≤18 dBm; SRCC: ≤18 dBm
5.8 GHz
FCC: ≤28 dBm; CE: ≤14 dBm; SRCC: ≤26 dBm
Operating Current/Voltage 950 mAh @3.7 V
Supported Mobile Device Size Thickness range: 6.5-8.5 mm
Max length: 160 mm
INTELLIGENT FLIGHT BATTERY

Capacity 1480 mAh
Voltage 11.4 V
Max Charging Voltage 13.05 V
Battery Type LiPo 3S
Energy 16.87 Wh
Net Weight Approx. 0.2 lbs (95 g)
Charging Temperature Range 41° to 104° F (5° to 40° C)

GIMBAL

Controllable Range Pitch: -85° to 0°
Stabilization 2-axis mechanical (pitch, roll)
VISION SYSTEM

Velocity Range ≤22.4 mph (36 kph) at 6.6 ft (2 m) above ground
Altitude Range 0-26 ft (0 – 8 m)
Operating Range 0-98 ft (0 – 30 m)
Operating Environment Surface with clear patterns, enables diffuse reflection with >20% reflection rate
Adequate lighting (lux>15)
WI-FI

Operating Frequency 2.4 GHz/5.8 GHz
Max Transmission Distance 100 m(Distance), 50 m(Height) (Unobstructed, free of interference)
CHARGER

Input 100-240 V; 50/60 Hz; 0.5 A
Output 5 V/3 A; 9 V/2 A; 12 V/1.5 A
RECOMMENDED MICRO SD CARDS

Model Sandisk 16/32 GB UHS-1 Micro SDHC
Kingston 16/32 GB UHS-1 Micro SDHC
Samsung 16/32 GB UHS-I Micro SDHC
Sandisk 64 GB UHS-1 Micro SDXC
Kingston 64 GB UHS-1 Micro SDXC
Samsung 64 GB UHS-I Micro SDXC

References:

DJI Review and RCGroups

Until I received my Spark, that is all… Stay tuned for more info…