View Full Version : need some drone buying tips

12-15-2014, 11:38 AM
finally deciding to get into the drone scene. got my new hero 4 black ready to go. while doing research ive found a few premade kits and a self-make list of parts. btw i use to build and fly model airplanes years ago, also was a network engineer/pc tech for years so i have the know how to build my own if thats the route i should go.

i found these pre-made setups:


seems to be a cream of the crop setup for a pretty steep price, but they do all the leg work for u


not quite as nice equipment for a cheaper price.

then found,


which seems like fairly high end stuff im guessing. getting the phantom 2 v2.0 with those parts (minus the case) is less than $1500 and i put it together.

just curious if anyone thinks the alaska guys list is not that good and i should just pony up and let someone else build it for me. but if its good stuff (or if someone has recommendations for better parts) then i would enjoy putting it together and of course enjoy the savings. btw i am a professional photographer/videographer/editor so i will be adding this to my professional workflow if that should influence my purchase. though im not ready to jump to the big boys (s900, etc...) till i play with one of these for a while.


Nate Haustein
12-15-2014, 01:01 PM
The thing that makes the Aerial Media Pros kit more expensive is the top-of-the-line Futaba 14SG Tx. That's like $599 of the price right there. Everything else in their kit is pretty much rebadged Video TX/RX stuff you can get almost anywhere these days. They do set up the Phantom with the new TX, and all of the VTX and iOSD equipment, so you'll have to decide if that's worth it for you personally.

Basically you're looking at
$1000 for the Phantom + extra battery, $600 for the Futaba, $100 for the VTX, $200 for the VRX, $75 for iOSD, $75 for the better antennas, and about $200 for a case. All told you're paying them about $500-600 to set it all up for you. Honestly at that price, I'd get the new DJI Inspire.

12-15-2014, 02:11 PM
yeah if i didnt already have the gopro i would heavily considered the inspire but i love the footage its putting out. so decided just want to either buy or build around it.

yeah their remote really looks top of the line. question on the basic remote that comes with the phantom 2....does it rotate the cam like theirs does? also on their videos they talk about flipping a switch that helps control it like in high wind maybe...does regular remote do that? TIA

Nate Haustein
12-16-2014, 12:32 PM
There is a small lever on the back of the DJI remote that controls gimbal pitch. Other controllers have variable dials that can also control the gimbal pitch. Flipping a switch sounds like changing the NAZA flight controller from GPS mode to ATTI mode - this lets the wind "take" the craft rather than having the GPS mode fight the wind for position. You need to be careful with this but it can made for smoother footage. Pretty much any controller has a switch for this as well, you just need to configure it with the NAZA PC software (easy). Another option they talked about was "Dual Rate" which essentially reduces the sensitivity of the stick movements. For example, if you set dual rate to 30%, a full-throw of the stick would behave like a 1/3 movement without dual-rate. It makes it easier to be smooth in your movements, especially on the yaw axis. I do not think that the DJI remote has this ability, but again, most 3rd party transmitters would. I'm currently using a Futaba T8J for my F550 hex and it's a nice transmitter with many useful features.

I'm not telling you not to buy the AMP package - it's very nice and convenient. However, for me, half the fun was building my own and learning as I go. This way, I actually had an idea of how the system worked, and also how to repair and service it when the time came.