The 3DR Solo Drone is a remarkable piece of technology, especially geared towards aerial photography and videography. Here’s a comprehensive blog post covering the key aspects of the 3DR Solo Drone, sourced from various expert reviews and user experiences.
Drones have revolutionized the way we capture aerial footage, making professional-grade photography and videography more accessible. The 3DR Solo Drone stands out in this rapidly evolving market due to its unique features and compatibility with GoPro cameras.
2015 was an exciting year for drone enthusiasts. The DJI Phantom 3 was launched, attracting significant attention. FPV racing emerged as a popular sport, captivating audiences with its speed and competitiveness. Additionally, 3D Robotics introduced the Solo drone, branding it as “the smart drone”.
The Solo’s release was eagerly anticipated, but it faced some challenges. Initially, it was difficult to find in stores, and the much-anticipated gimbal was delayed, only becoming widely available in September. This mix of launches and hurdles marked a dynamic year in the drone industry.
The Solo isn’t 3DR’s first drone venture. They’ve produced various drones and fixed-wing UAVs for mapping purposes. Their notable release, the IRIS, came out in 2013. They’ve been at the forefront of autonomous flight, thanks to their well-regarded Pixhawk flight controller. This article zeroes in on the Solo, aiming to guide you in deciding if it’s the ideal drone and camera platform for your needs.
What is 3DR Solo Drone?
The 3DR Solo Drone is a sophisticated, high-performance unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that’s particularly popular for aerial photography and videography. It’s known for its advanced technology and user-friendly features, making it a favorite among both hobbyists and professionals. Here’s a detailed look at what the 3DR Solo Drone is all about:
Compatibility with GoPro Cameras:
One of the standout features of the 3DR Solo is its compatibility with GoPro cameras, specifically the Hero 3, 3+, and 4 models. This allows users to capture high-quality aerial footage. The drone itself doesn’t come with a built-in camera, so users need to attach their own GoPro.
Intelligent Flight Modes:
The drone is equipped with several autonomous flight modes, such as Follow Me, Orbit, Cable Cam, and Selfie. These modes facilitate capturing cinematic shots and offer various ways to shoot videos and photos.
Design and Build:
The 3DR Solo is known for its durable design. It’s constructed with strong materials, and its propellers are made from glass-reinforced nylon, which enhances their durability.
It features a user-friendly, video game-style controller and can also be controlled via a smartphone app. The drone is equipped with two 1GHz Cortex-A9 Linux computers, one in the drone and one in the controller, ensuring stable and reliable flight.
Battery and Flight Time:
The drone uses a 5200 mAh lithium-ion battery, providing a flight time of around 20 minutes with a camera and a bit longer without one.
The 3DR Solo includes safety features like pause and safety net, which help in preventing accidents and make flying more secure, especially for beginners.
It supports live streaming of HD video from the GoPro to a smartphone and offers unique capabilities like in-flight GoPro controls and wireless video streaming.
The 3DR Solo Drone is well-regarded for its combination of advanced capabilities, durability, and ease of use, making it a solid choice for anyone interested in aerial photography and videography.
Key Features and Specifications of 3DR Solo Drone:
Solo is aimed at prosumer drone users, bridging the gap between high-end drones like the DJI S1000 and more basic models. It’s particularly suitable for those who want quality aerial video without a huge expense. Its main competitor, the DJI Phantom 3, caters to both hobbyists and professionals seeking affordable, high-quality aerial footage. This makes both drones appealing for users wanting to elevate their video projects without breaking the bank.
The 3DR Solo Drone is known for its advanced features and specifications, making it popular among drone enthusiasts and professionals. Here’s a brief overview of its key features and specifications:
The Solo doesn’t have a built-in camera but is compatible with GoPro Hero models 3, 3+, and 4. this allows for high-quality aerial footage and photography.
It can reach speeds over 55 mph, making it faster than many of its competitors.
Autonomous Flight Modes:
Includes various modes like Selfie, Cable Cam, Orbit, and Follow Me, which help in capturing cinematic shots with ease.
The drone is well-built and durable, with strong arms and glass-reinforced nylon props, ideal for withstanding minor crashes.
Equipped with a 5200 mAh lithium-ion battery, it provides around 20 minutes of flight time with a camera and 25 minutes without.
Control and Connectivity:
Features a video game-style controller and can be controlled via a smartphone app. Includes two dedicated 1GHz Cortex-A9 Linux computers for smooth operation.
Flight Control System:
Utilizes the Pixhawk 2 autopilot system for reliable and stable flight.
The drone is quite large, measuring just below 19 inches from tip to tip and weighs around 3.35 pounds with the battery, gimbal, and a GoPro camera.
Equipped with multicolored LED lights for night flying and status indicators.
Smart Shot Feature:
Allows the drone to fly autonomously while the user focuses on capturing videos.
Capable of live streaming HD videos from your GoPro directly to your smartphone.
The Solo Gimbal (sold separately) provides smooth video footage and in-flight GoPro controls.
Includes safety features like pause and safety net for confident and easy flying.
These features make the 3DR Solo Drone a versatile choice for various aerial photography and videography needs.
Pros and Cons of 3DR Solo Drone:
Here’s a concise summary of the pros and cons of the 3DR Solo Drone, based on information from various sources:
Compatible with GoPro Hero models 3, 3+, and 4, allowing for high-quality aerial footage.
Can reach over 55 mph, making it one of the faster drones in its category.
Autonomous Flight Modes:
Features like Selfie, Cable Cam, Orbit, and Follow Me simplify capturing professional-looking shots.
Strong arms and glass-reinforced nylon props enhance durability, especially in minor crashes.
Two 1GHz Cortex-A9 Linux computers for a stable and reliable flight experience.
Capable of streaming HD videos from the GoPro to a smartphone.
Smart Shot Feature:
Facilitates autonomous flying while focusing on video capture.
Includes pause and safety net features for secure flying.
No Built-in Camera:
Requires an additional GoPro camera for capturing footage.
Gimbal Sold Separately:
For optimal video stability, the gimbal must be purchased separately.
Limited Flight Time:
Approximately 20 minutes of flight time, which might be less with a camera.
Battery Charging Time:
Takes around 1.5 hours to recharge.
Lack of Sense-Avoid Technology:
Doesn’t include some advanced safety technologies found in other drones.
The maximum range is less than some of its competitors.
This balanced view of the 3DR Solo Drone’s capabilities and limitations is based on expert reviews and user experiences.
The 3DR Solo Drone is an excellent choice for those who already own a compatible GoPro camera and are looking for a drone that combines high performance with user-friendly features. While it has some limitations like the additional requirement of a camera and longer charging times, its advanced flight capabilities and durable build make it a worthy investment for both hobbyists and professionals in aerial photography and videography.