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DJI is making its 4K drone cameras removable for use in a new handheld mount

by on January 18, 2015

Stephan Jukic – January 18, 2015

Drones with built-in HD cameras have been around for at least a couple years at ever decreasing prices and recently, the makers of these drones, most notable among them DJI, have taken the natural step of upgrading the cams on some of their machines from HD to 4K ultra HD.

Now DJI (so far alone among drone makers) has also taken things further stil in terms of flexibility by making its gimbal mounted DJI Inspire 1 drone camera removable, so that it can be put to handheld use, much like a regular 4K camera but with unique functionality. This is a pretty awesome feature on what was already a very cool gimbal mounted 4K camera design for the drone itself.

Like many other drones, the Inspire used a gimbal-mounted setup for its 4K camera because it allowed users to remotely pan and tilt while also automatically keeping the camera level and highly stable for maximal shooting clarity. The gimbal allows this degree of flexibility and stability even while the little quadracopter drone it was mounted to buzzes around tilting back and forth.

Now, DJI is also preparing a handheld mount that the Inspire’s 4K camera, along with its gimbal, can be attached to after easily being removed from the drone.

This interesting twist on the typical drone mounting design was unveiled at this year’s CES show in Las Vegas and is designed to let users of the Inspire 1 use the one single camera for both aerial shooting and ground-based takes by hand. In other words, it offers the best of both worlds with the maximal amount of flexibility.

the gimbal on the 4K camera in DJI Inspire 1 drones offers lots of stability during movement

the gimbal on the 4K camera in DJI Inspire 1 drones offers lots of stability during movement

Best of all, the camera-mounting devices that DJI is making comes with physical control buttons that allow the gimbal and camera to be manipulated just as they would be while attached to the drone itself. This includes controls for tilting, panning, shutter speed and different shooting modes. There is also an app that can be installed onto a user’s paired-up smartphone which allows additional features like a real-time viewfinder. Of course, because the camera stays on the gimbal it was built into while on the drone, it remains steady while the user is moving around over almost any kind of terrain.

So far, DJI hasn’t provided any other specs about their new product innovation since the whole thing is still being developed for commercial release but we’ll be seeing the first of these hand mounting units go on sale later in the year and when they emerge, we’ll be sure to include more details and pricing information.

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