When last week’s announcement of the all-new mini-drone DJI Spark went off, I thought: This is a mini version of the DJI Mavic Pro. And if you look at it alone, without anything else in the frame, you could almost mistake it for a Mavic. But hey, this drone is less than half the size of the magic and has cool new features.
First, the new Spark is small. Really small. It is probably the smallest yet serious drone on the market out there, without sacrificing much of the performance. You can fit the DJI Spark into a pant pocket, or into a small backpack. Some people even just clip it to their belt.
Its smallness definitely makes the DJI Spark interesting for travelers and travel photographers. Because as anyone traveling and photographing a lot knows – the best camera is the one you always have with you. And the same goes for the drone.
Compared to the DJI Mavic Pro, which was already small, the Spark’s new smaller form factor made it necessary to even further miniaturize things. This went at the expense of the camera and the gimbal as well, but intelligently: The camera is still a 12 MP still, or 1080p 30fps video camera. Its sensor is larger than your usual smartphone sensor, so that should definitely do. And here’s the exciting thing about the gimbal: DJI has made the gimbal so small, it had to take away one axis for stabilization. This makes the DJI Spark gimbal only a 2-axis stabilized gimbal. So what does that mean for image stabilization? Well, there is one unstabilized axis left, and because it’s just one axis, it is easy to stabilize by software. And this is what DJI does in the Spark. All images are automatically stabilized, so you don’t notice a thing.
How is the tech crowd receiving the Spark? Reviews so far have been fantastic. Casey Neistat gave it a full five stars, and many others followed. Of course, this isn’t a Phantom Pro or an Inspire, which can be used to make movies. But for the fun home movie, the DJI Spark is more than enough.