DJI's new Encourage 2 drone is packing two cameras – The Verge



DJI has a chokehold on the buyer drone market, and it’s leveraging that dominance to try to set up itself because the clear chief for business drones utilized by professionals as properly. When it launched the Encourage 1 again in November of 2014, the corporate stated it was attempting to bridge the hole between hobbyists and Hollywood. The Encourage 1 was costly, however not completely out of attain for the typical shopper.

DJI now has a number of very highly effective drones you should purchase which sit under the Encourage in price. The Mavic Professional and the Phantom four Professional each provide footage that may work for something however actually high-end film making. So at this time the corporate is rolling out the Encourage 2, a revamped model of its high-end mannequin, now aimed squarely at skilled filmmakers.

The Encourage 2 is more durable and extra highly effective than the unique. It has a brand new magnesium-aluminum physique that DJI says will increase stiffness whereas decreasing weight. Its prime pace has elevated from 50 miles per hour all the best way as much as 67 mph, and its battery life has climbed from 18 minutes to 25. You can too go excessive with this drone, like, ridiculously excessive. It has a service ceiling of 16,400 ft above sea stage, and a self-heating dual-battery system that may maintain the drone flying even in frigid temperatures.

Extra importantly, the Encourage 2 is the primary DJI drone to function not one, however two cameras. The unit has its major camera for capturing footage slung beneath on a three-axis gimbal. Identical to the primary mannequin, the Encourage 2’s legs raise up, in order that they gained’t block the camera’s view, and it could possibly freely rotate 360 levels to seize motion in any path. As well as, there’s now a easy, two-axis camera on the entrance that enables the pilot to at all times see the place the drone is headed. The system is designed for twin operators: one pilot, one director framing the motion, every receiving their very own dwell video feed.

Should you’re flying solo, the Encourage 2 may also help you obtain some tough photographs with the usage of laptop imaginative and prescient and autonomous navigation. Just like the Phantom four and Mavic Professional traces, the Encourage 2 now has sensors that enable it to see and keep away from obstacles. Imaginative and prescient sensors are positioned on the entrance and backside of the unit, and infrared sensors sit on prime. The unit additionally options the pc imaginative and prescient system and computerized topic monitoring DJI constructed into the Phantom four and Mavic Professional. This implies you may lock onto a topic and the camera will rotate to maintain them in body whereas the plane flies freely in one other path.

DJI has designed a brand new picture processing system for the Encourage 2 meant to fulfill skilled filmmakers. They name it CineCore, and it could possibly seize 5.2K video at a whopping four.2Gbps bitrate. To deal with all that knowledge, the Encourage 2 has added an onboard SSD. You should purchase this drone with the brand new Zenmuse X4S or X5S camera. The latter function a micro four/three sensor and helps 10 totally different lenses, together with zooms. And the system helps video compression codecs that matter to execs, like CinemaDNG and Apple ProRes. For photographers there’s a DNG RAW mode that captures 30-megapixel nonetheless photographs. And it could possibly stream video in broadcast-quality codecs for native information crews who need dwell aerial video from the scene of an unfolding occasion.

The Encourage 2 begins at $2,999, positively not a drone that may enchantment to the typical shopper. Given its prime pace, that’s most likely an excellent factor. That poses two large questions for DJI. First, what number of professionals within the movie and tv trade will select this unit over drones from high-end rivals like Ascending Technologies and FreeFly? Second, is the Encourage 2 highly effective sufficient to win over numerous industrial clients doing issues like infrastructure inspection, website surveys, and safety?

After all, these clients may additionally take into account DJI’s Matrice 600 Pro, a brand new model of an much more highly effective drone which the corporate introduced final week. Why is DJI flooding the market with so many new models without delay, models that overlap closely of their function set and capabilities? As a result of, properly, overkill.

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