DJI Inspire 3 Aerial Filmmaking : In the world of aerial cinematography, a shot that follows a speeding car’s journey from behind, to the side, and then to the front is a treasure. This once-elusive achievement has found its champion in the form of the DJI Inspire 3, surpassing its predecessor, the Inspire 2, in monumental ways.
As I embark on this review, I acknowledge that I cannot fully test the Inspire 3’s capabilities alone. Instead, consider this an ode to its power and potential. Holding a drone license and possessing an Inspire 2, I can distinctly perceive the monumental enhancements and new features of this long-awaited release, more than six years in the making.
This product comprises two key elements: the drone itself and the camera system. The Inspire 3, a drone capable of handling even the harshest and windiest conditions, opens up new realms of photographic possibilities. Much like the Inspire 2, it features landing gear that gracefully elevates to offer the camera a full 360-degree view. When it’s time to descend, the landing gear descends just as gracefully, ensuring a safe return.
With folding detachable rotor blades and a 4kg weight, the Inspire 3 proves remarkably maneuverable and agile, allowing filmmakers to maximize their creative potential. It can reach speeds of up to 94km/h, with ascent and descent speeds of 8m/s and a dive speed of 10m/s. However, it’s worth noting that flying the Inspire 3 is more complex and challenging compared to DJI’s smaller drones. The remote control is highly sensitive and precise, leaving little room for error, making it a tool best wielded by professionals.
Powering this aerial marvel are dual TB51 batteries, providing up to 28 minutes of flight time. The DJI RC Plus remote control is a standout feature, boasting a 7-inch display with 1200nit high brightness, ensuring optimal visibility even in direct sunlight. It is also equipped with a hot-swappable battery, eliminating the fear of running out of power.
On the photography front, the DJI Inspire 3 takes creativity to new heights. In the hands of a skilled filmmaker, it unleashes the potential for stunning shots, breaking free from the confines of traditional filmmaking. This professional-grade platform records with cinematic-grade quality, a realm previously reserved for cumbersome camera systems.
The Zenmuse X9 8K Air Gimbal camera, included with the drone, captures 8K footage at 75fps in ProRes RAW and 4K footage at 120fps in ProRes RAW. All images and videos are stored on the 1TB DJI PROSSD nestled within the drone’s body, conveniently accessible via a USB-C cable for direct download.
Yet, what truly sets the Inspire 3 apart is its advanced positioning technology, allowing cinematographers to meticulously plan their shots and streamline production. The Waypoint Pro function enables pilots to chart flight routes for precise shot planning. Additionally, the Inspire 3 introduces Repeatable Routes, an invaluable feature for film sets that require multiple takes. It allows pilots to flawlessly replicate a route while retaining specific settings, such as speed, altitude, gimbal angle, and camera configurations. This capability facilitates complex single shots and seamless transitions across different times of the day.
Another innovation is the 3D Dolly feature, granting the Inspire 3 the ability to mimic cranes, cable cams, and dollies, without the constraints of traditional equipment. Pilots can also craft aerial motion paths, enabling forward and backward movements at varying speeds and gimbal settings.
Safety remains a top priority with the Inspire 3, equipped with a multitude of sensors for obstacle detection in all directions. Even when the active avoidance feature is deactivated, the drone continues to provide distance information from obstacles on the navigation display. Additionally, an onboard FPV camera ensures the operator can maintain clear visibility of the drone’s path, even when the primary camera is directed elsewhere.
The DJI Inspire 3 professional filmmaking drone package includes the DJI RC Plus controller, Zenmuse X9-8K camera, DJI PROSSD 1TB, six batteries, a charging station, foldable props, a shoulder strap, and other essential accessories. It’s priced at $20,469, making it the go-to choice for filmmakers seeking to capture cinematic shots that were once only possible with a drone. The Inspire 3 stands as a safe, stable, and dynamic platform for capturing awe-inspiring cinematic-grade videos that must be witnessed to be truly appreciated.