A Phantom 3 and 4 Comparison

A Phantom 3 and 4 Comparison

April 03, 2016

Phantom 3 vs Phantom 4

Drone industry heavyweight DJI has recently released the newest model in their highly popular Phantom series, the Phantom 4, which boasts a fresh streamlined design, two brand new flight modes, obstacle avoidance features, and an even longer battery life than its predecessors. New and improved in both flight and functionality, the Phantom 4 is poised to make flying easier and more enjoyable than ever before. 

LEADING IN INNOVATION

           When DJI first released the Phantom 3 Professional its simple to use design and ground-breaking new features revolutionized the consumer drone market. The Phantom 3's DJI Go app surpassed its competitors with a 720p video feed, an automatic take-off and land feature, and new intelligent flight modes that enhanced the flying experience like never before. The Phantom 3 Pro also lead the pack by introducing Lightbridge, a powerful technology that extended the transmission range to 5 km from controller to drone. It was also first to integrate both GPS and GLONASS for faster satellite locks and better positioning accuracy. 

          Ultimately, the Phantom 3 Pro was a bestseller and DJI further established itself as a leader in the consumer drone industry.  With the new Phantom 4, DJI has once again demonstrated why their innovation keeps them ahead of the pack. 

PERFORMANCE 

Phantom 4 ActiveTrack

The Phantom 4 features two brand new and exciting intelligent flight modes, Tap to Fly and ActiveTrack. With Tap to Fly, the user can tap any destination on their screen using the DJI Go app and the drone will automatically fly to that specific spot. In ActiveTrack the pilot can tap any object on their app screen and have the drone follow that object as well as actively keep it in the centre of the shot.

Batteries - Phantom 3 (left), Phantom 4 (right)

When it comes to speed, the Phantom 4 can now fly faster and longer. While the Phantom 3 had a maximum speed of 57 kilometres per hour, the Phantom 4 can now fly at 72 kilometres per hour. The Phantom 4 also has up to 20% longer battery life with a maximum flight time of 28 minutes versus about 23 minutes of flight time for the Phantom 3. 

TECHNOLOGY

Phantom 4 - Forward Facing Sensors for Obstacle Avoidance 

If you are worried about crashing your drone or have regrettably already experienced a crash, the Phantom 4's new obstacle avoidance system is one of its finest new features. The obstacle avoidance system is designed to have the drone dodge obstacles on its own by analyzing its surroundings, sensing an obstacle, and intelligently flying around it, making it an excellent feature for those who are new to flying. 

Visual Positioning System (VPS)

Now with five cameras, (one main camera, two on the front, and two on the bottom,) the Phantom 4 can now examine its environment better than ever before and detect obstacles up to 50 feet away. The Visual Position System (VPS) has been enhanced with the additional new cameras as well and can now operate at altitudes of up to 33 feet high, even without GPS.

The Phantom 4 also features two compass modules and dual Inertial Measurement Units (IMUs).  With the extra sensors the flight controller is able to collect more data to improve flying accuracy. 

DESIGN AND MATERIALS

Phantom 3 vs Phantom 4

Made with a new high quality magnesium skeleton the Phantom 4 has received a big upgrade from its plastic made predecessor. The magnesium skeleton helps to keep the Phantom 4 stiff to reduce vibrations while the drone is in flight. The new skeleton also moves the drones weight to its centre of gravity, greatly improving balance and making it much more stable and agile while in the air.

Gimbal and Camera

While the gimbal on the Phantom 3 was typically the most likely thing to break, the Phantom 4 now has a reinforced gimbal protecting it from damage. DJI has further improved the gimbal on the Phantom 4 with a new U-Frame design, improving stability and steadiness in the camera footage. Finally, the motors on the Phantom 4 have been raised to improve their cooling efficiency, and conversely allow the propellers to be raised so that they no longer show up in video footage. The Phantom 4 also has new quick release propellers for added convenience.

Motors and Propeller Mounts

THE MOST INTELLIGENT DRONE YET

           The Phantom 4 is a major leap forward in the Phantom Series with new useful features, sophisticated sensing capabilities, and an improved design that makes flying an enjoyable experience for drone enthusiasts of all levels. The new upgrades in both design and functionality showcase just how far the Phantom 4 is flying ahead of the competition. 

By Alissa Crane

A DrDrone Article