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Mar 10, 2016, 04:00 PM
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The DJI Phantom 4 - My Info & Thoughts

As we approach the release the Phantom 4 i thought i would put together some info around what we know about the P4 and some of my thoughts.

The Craft

All new design with two front facing cameras for object avoidance and additional second camera below for VPS system and ground tracking, completely new shell, now gloss in appearance.

With all these new sensors we have new flight inteligent modes

Sense and Avoid

We all use our eyes to see and interact with the world. A forward Obstacle Sensing System gives the Phantom 4 it its own pair of eyes, empowering it to see in three dimensions and to react. In Normal Mode if it sees an obstacle coming close it will stop and hover. In TapFly, ActiveTrack and Smart Return Home modes it will avoid the obstacle, or hover to avoid a collision. It also gives you warnings so you always know what is happening to the Phantom. The downward facing


In TapFly mode, all you have to do to fly is tap on the screen of your smartphone or tablet. To change the direction of flight, you can simply tap the screen to fly anywhere. Flying using control sticks and maintaining altitude, course and speed can be challenging, so TapFly takes over all of these controls for you leaving you to focus on your shot. Using its Obstacle Sensing System, the Phantom 4 can fly places you might not have gone before, to create dynamic and inspiring footage.

Active Track

ActiveTrack makes science fiction a reality. Whether you are running, driving, rafting and more, the Phantom 4 uses an advanced combination of computer vision, object recognition and machine learning to track you as you go. Circling a moving object used to only be achievable by the most seasoned of pilots, now everyone can do it with a flick of the thumb. The entire time that ActiveTrack is running obstacle avoidance is too, so it will decide whether it

As well as the new guidance modes DJI have added a new Sport Mode, this allows the craft to tilt at 45 degrees and fly to a max speed of around 45mph, GPS, Compass and VPS are still active just like GPS mode on the P3 but in this mode the Sense and Avoid is not.

The standard GPS mode supports all of the new features listed above but is limited to around 25mph so its a little slower than the P3 GPS mode but thats not a bad thing to be honest.


All new motors with QR props, note the motors sit onto of the shell to try and keep the props out of view at high speed also new cooling slots added into the bases, no KV information for the motors as of yet.

One note just like the Inspire QR system i would recommend inspecting and changing the bases periodically to ensure safe flight, inspection before each flight for any cracks or damage to the props and bases, then after 50-100 hours i would change both the props and bases, these parts are cheap, its just not worth risking your craft for the relatively low cost of changing them.

Aircraft speed in each mode

P Mode

Ascending 11mph (18kph)
Descending 7mph (11kph)
Horizontal 22mph (36kph)

S Mode

Ascending 13mph (27kph)
Descending 9mph (14.4kph)
Horizontal 45mph (72kph)

A Mode (ATTI)

Ascending 11mph (18kph)
Descending 7mph (11kph)
Horizontal 36mph (58kph)

Camera & Gimbal

Entirely new camera and gimbal setup.
Main gimbal body new housed within craft with internal isolation,entire lower section made of Composite material,new duel CGU on the gimbal as well.


Newly design Lens but its the same sensor as the P3 its believed , new additional 120fps in 1080P recording mode.

So far pictures from demo and tester units look much improved over the P3, much clearer and more detail.


New larger battery, capacity increased to 5350mah, flight times being stated as up to 28 minutes.

New power connector, gone are the large brass pins and a new reversible connector has been fitted into the base of the battery. The new battery is also 95g heaver than the P3 battery and accounts for most of the additional 100g or so weight of the craft.


DJI have made some big changes to the flight controller setup, for the first time they have added redundancy with duel IMU and duel compass modules, DJI state it allow it to constantly compare the data it is receiving through both pairs. This data is run through advanced algorithms to check accuracy and any inaccurate data is simply discarded without affecting flight, this is a very welcome addition for flight safety.

GPS is both system again just like the P3 Pro/Advance.

Overall this is a whole new design, everything is mounted around a central core that holds the battery.
DJI have moved back to having separate components, ESC’s are mounded on each side of the core with two on each board so can be replaced with out changing the whole main board if you have an issue.

Reminds me a little of the WKM/A2 IMU internal design

Flight Controller and main electronics is located underneath

Gimbal and Yaw Motor are located underneath the main components core

Overall the component packaging on this craft is impressive.

Remote Controller

GL300C Model is shipping with first batches of Phantom 4

Based on the existing design its visually identical to the P3 Pro/Advance Controller, DJI have now added a Pause button, this replaces the Playback button and works in the autonomous flight modes, in normal flight you just release the sticks to stop and hover.

The controller does not come with HDMI output but its been confirmed the existing HDMI board from DJI is compatible with a firmware update.

The GL300C controller from the P3 does work with the P4 as long as its has fw version v1.5.8 onwards,HDMI is also confirmed as woking if fitted to the controller already.

The GL300A and GL300B are not compatible.

The inspire 1 GL658C Is confirmed to work with the P4 with fw version v1.5.8 onwards, HDMI is also confirmed as woking.

A nice touch is the Phantom 4 come with a nice carry case, whilst this is not going to be for heavy use it does make a nice addition to the package.

Overall I'm really impressed with what i have seen so far, the demos of avoidance and tracking and worked as i would expect, there will be some limitations to all of these new features and whilst they may not be perfect they are current well ahead of anything anyone else has available to buy today.


The Phantom 4 is available from DJI

Please Note: As with all my own blog post all links may be affiliate links and i may receive a small commission on any purchase bought through them , if you wish to support me then then are there otherwise you can navigate directly to DJI's website, thank you. .

As time goes on i will update this with more relevant Information.
Last edited by Mad_angler1; Aug 25, 2017 at 03:32 PM.
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