I already have a drone for fun, but would really love a new one following me and recording video when biking or skying with kids…
I did a quick tour comparing brands and model and concludes that right now, the best one (compromise price/quality/feature) would be the DJI Spark.
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I have been considering:
- Quality of image (better than Parrot Bebop 2) – full HD, 12MB, stabilized on 2 axis (but no big deal with this limitation)
- Duration of the flight (15′)
- Range of the flight (100 m or 2000m with the optional remote, at 13 m/s)
- Obstacle Avoidance (forward facing and bottom facing sensors only)
- Flight modes: Circle or Helix around the subject, auto landing and takeoff (from the palm), follow-me (tracking), Selfie, Tapfly (goes to the location indicated with your finger on the screen),
- Easy to use for novice. has an optional remote, can connect with a Android phone, can be controlled with gesture.
- Handle the wind very well.
See review here.
Other options that I could be considering are:
- In my dreams only, a DJI Mavic Pro, decribed here. Just a question of price, as it’s making fun a bit too expensive…
- Maybe, because it comes with a FPV headset, a Parrot Bebop 2 Power, described here. But it’s less compact and portable than the DJI Spark and the quality of images is also lower. On the opposite, the flight can last for 30′ !
- Possibly, a Yuneec Typhoon H, introduced here. It is more a pro device, more expensive, but very exiting :p Would be a better choice IMO than the DJI phantom from a quality/price perspective.
DJI Mavic Pro
Parrot Bebop 2 Power
Yuneec Typhon H
Edit 04/2018 I did chose for the Dji Spark with a Fly More combo.
Edit 08/2019 I did crash my drone at least 10 times since I am flying with it. Sometimes in trees, sometimes in walls. I never broke anything in the past. But after my last crash, the engine of the camera stopped to work. I did sent the devive to DJI and they fixed it for 50€ of workforece + 18€ for the engine. The best suport in the world, with excellent and clear communication!
Edit 10/2019 After one year and an half of practice with the Spark, I decided to upgrade to a Mavic. By chance, I have been able to aquire a Mavic 2 Pro with a “free SmartController”.
I just had this error message when trying to connect TuneBlade on my Airplay Yamaha: “There was a problem initializing audio capture. Exception from HRESULT 0x88890008”
I fixed it in 5 seconds by reconfiguring my playback device.
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- In the Systray, right the Speaker icon and select “Playback devices” in the menu. This is opening a “Sound” window.
- On Windows 10, there is no entry “Playback devices”. Instead, click on the entry “Sounds”
- In the tab “Playback” of this window, select the speaker currently used by the PC and click the button “Configure” at the bottom left.
- Do reconfigure your playback device.
In my case, my playback device was reset to “Stereo” although it should have been 7.1 Surround. This usually happens after an upgrade of its Realtek Audio Drivers.
I spent hours trying to figure out why I couldn’t connect my Galaxy S7 onto my Synology using a PPTP VPN on the Proximus 3G/4G Network (Belgium) while it was working fine if connected via WiFi.
Finally, I gave up and configured a L2TP/IPSec VPN. This one worked immediately like a charm, both on WiFi and 3G/4G. I am quite sure this is due to Proximus configuring my profile to use CGN (Carrier Grade NAT).
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I was initially inspired by this post (“Using Synology DiskStation as a VPN server using built-in Android VPN client”). So;
- I did first configure my Synology VPN Server to use PPTP as explained here (Official Knowledge base Synology)
- Next, I did open my Synology Firewall (port 1723 for PPTP) via the Control Panel > Security > Firewall > Edit Rules > Edit an entry to Allow > Select Built-in applications > VPN Server (PPTP)
- Then, I did configure my Modem to route the TCP port 1723 to my NAS via Access Control > Port Mapping
- Finally, I configured a PPTP VPN on my Galaxy S7 via Settings > Connections > More connection settings > VPN > ADD VPN
It worked immediately while connecting my Galaxy S7 via WiFi. But if failed while connected via 3G/4G. To investigate, I did enable the firewall of my dd-wrt router (placed between my modem and my NAS) and configured it to send all its firewall messages to the syslog server of my Synology (the “Log Center”). I those logs, I found packets corresponding most probably to the VPN requests from my Galaxy S7 (They were only arriving when I was trying to establish a connection). Those were not coming from my Galaxy S7’s IP. Instead, they were coming from another Proximus IP, with a protocol 47 (Generic Route Encapsulation)?! Could this be due to Proximus configuring my profile to use CGN (Carrier Grade NAT)? Unfortunately, I couldn’t check and reconfigure this myself as the option is not available anymore via the MyProximus administration interface…
So, I decided to give up with this PPTP VPN and use a more secure but less performant VPN: L2TP/IPSEC with a PSK (IPsec pre-shared key). And miracle, after opening and routing the UDP ports 500, 1701 and 4500, it worked !