DJI and GoPro are two big giants in the field of aerial video recording and if you are looking to own an economical drone then you have landed yourself at right place.
Let’s talk about the GoPro Karma Vs DJI Phantom 4, the industry’s two hottest drone models that are being purchased by most of the people. Not everyone is capable enough to own a highly expensive professional drone but these two drones are the perfect fit to satisfy any semi-professional purpose or someone with a normal utility of drone.
Type of drone owners:
Everyone these days are freaking out about drone usage, some are using it to record candid moments and some are using these flying machines for their business purpose. Before we start our comparison between two of the highest selling drones it’s important to recognize yourself as a type of drone owner. Every type of drone owner has its own requirement and it’s important to acknowledge yourself in a particular category.
Tech nerd: These guys are people’s favorite because of their habit of getting into the details of every electronic device; these guys are the true tester of gadgets and pursue the best product in the market. This guy knows all the details about firmware updates, calibrations, drone settings and bugs; this guy doesn’t mind to try out new gadgets or be the first user of any new technology.
A newbie: These guys are basically trying to go with the flow since most of their colleague owns a drone they want to buy a drone too. These are the people with minimum requirement and searching for a device that can fly; these people don’t have many expectations from the machine, they just want to fly it for fun and some time for stunts.
Instafreak: They don’t really care about the different technicalities of the machine; all they care about is the quality of picture and ease of carrying.
A Pro: Basically drones were introduced for the professionals and these guys know how to fly it in right way, these guys don’t buy a drone to race it with the friend. Their priority is to take the best shot and they are the people who check the real performance of drone through different maneuvers for different shoots.
So enough being discussed about the type of drone users, I hope you have figured out which category you fit in best. Now let get back to our discussion about GoPro karma vs DJI Phantom 4. We have tested both the drones in different scenarios and here is our review.
About DJI Phantom 4 Advanced
Phantom series can also be called as flagship models of DJI drones; DJI phantom series has made a different reputation in the world because of its superior technology and constant refinement of the sensors and functionality.
Although phantom 4 and phantom 4 pro looks identical with the same size and same built quality there has been considerable upgradate in terms of functionalities. You will be able to experience more reliable and smoother flight.
DJI drones have been so popular around the world that there will be no big deal if the famous videos you have been watching and enjoying are shot from these models. Upgraded 30 minute flight time makes it highly compatible with professional shoots which require long endurance.
Phantom 4 Pro has featured obstacle sensing sensors from 2 directions (front and downward) to protect your big investment from any damage while flying. This best value video drone comes with 16 GB memory card to let you store the data within your drone and can be transferred later. You can have a 4 battery charging hub in your package to charge multiple batteries simultaneously.
The 4K recording is provided with the phantom model at 100mb per second rate and that’s really impressive. For me, Phantom 4 Pro is Best Value Drone and worth every penny the quality of the product is way superior to its competitors and it has proven its technological advancement by becoming the most trusted brand within the professional photographer’s community.
About GoPro Karma Drone
So those who have been a loyal customer of GoPro and believed in its simplicity can opt for GoPro Karma Drone, you can also call it best mid-range 4K drone for photography.
So finally after tremendous success in the category of action camera GoPro launched its first official accessory for its action cameras, yes, a camera company landed themselves into drone market. If you already own a GoPro action camera then this drone can be a great option for you. Compared to DGI phantom this karma drone is more portable because of its foldable design.
GoPro has a mantra of keeping the functionality minimalistic that that’s the functionality that has been praised all over the world.
You can also expect the video quality of the Karma drone to be bit more superior than the DJI Mavic drone. Karma offers the much-required functionalities like Follow me and use of sonar for the obstacle avoidance. Karma flies smooth and leveled and you can expect lesser jerks.
You can expect the stabilization to be of great quality because of the integrated world class 3-axis gimbal that works on the brushless motors for superior quality video footages.
Although GoPro Karma Drone is highly portable it comes with its carry bag and you should not expect to carry thing drone in your laptop bag, it’s not that portable. Karma ships with the travel bag, controller, charger, and the handheld gimbal.
Providing a drone with a handheld gimbal make your purchase more versatile and practical, you may use the action camera through mounting it on the body or you can mount it on drone and you can have a capability to be mounted on hand hell grip as well.
Now Let The Comparison Begin!
DJI Phantom 4
|Weight: 1380 Grams||Weight: 1006 Grams|
|Controller: Yes||Controller: Yes|
|Camera Quality: 4K/60fps video||Camera Quality: 4K recording|
|Battery life: 27 min||Battery life: 20 min|
|Range: 7 km||Range: 3 km|
|Speed: 45 mph||Speed: 35 mph|
|Portability: Can be quite awkward to carry||Portability: Highly Portable with foldable blades|
GoPro Karma will cost you around $1000 (with HERO5 action camera) and DJI Phantom Advanced will cost you around $1200. Although I would suggest you to go through the whole comparison before you make your final call.
Winner: GoPro Karma
GoPro karma doesn’t look like an average camera drone; its Modular design and detachable Gimbal definitely provide it an extra edge over other competitor drones. Although karma has a foldable design don’t expect to carry it in your backpack but GoPro has been shipping a dedicated Karma carry case that makes the drone quite handy.
The design of the DJI Phantom is quite conventional and it doesn’t come with the foldable design. Although DJI has introduced the detachable handheld gimbal and folding design in their top-tier flagship models, you might feel Phantom to lag far behind karma in term of design.
One of the disadvantages of the Modular design of karma drone is you will be required to charge all the parts separately, while in the case of Phantom 4 you will be required to change a single battery.
Winner: For someone who is okay with charging all three components of Karma drone, GoPro Karma is a clear winner with its robust use and easy to carry design.
Although Affordable price and compact design is a great add-on to make the final decision, the main thing is the performance of the drone for which you are investing a huge amount of money. Portability, design, and sensors will be worthless if drone can’t perform according to expectation.
Flying experience is something Phantom 4 beats karma quite easily, whether you talk about flight statistics or the overall flying experience, Phantom 4 has got an extra edge in every scenario.
Phantom 4 beats karma with better battery life, it has got much better flying radius and if you ever require to shoot the fast moving object then Phantom 4 can chase down the object at speed of 45mph on sports mode.
Apart from the flying statistics Phantom 4 is loaded with advanced flying programs than Karma. Though Karma is equipped with user-friendly simple move functions and a return home button, the Phantom 4 has its trademark follow-me, intelligent flight support system, and collision avoidance tools that are becoming invaluable for UAV pilots.
Winner: Phantom 4 is a clear winner of this round.
Karma’s picture quality depends on the GoPro model you are using but as we all know that GoPro’s cameras are one of the best in the market and there is no double feeling about it.
In the earlier version of Phantom drones used to come without a camera but in phantom 4 quality of camera have been raised considerably. Phantom 4 camera is capable of taking 4K videos and 60 FPS, these cameras are equipped with the 1-inch sensor for high-quality pictures.
Winner: it’s a tie; both the cameras are quite powerful and are capable of delivering excellent footage.
A simplistic design has always been the strongest part of GoPro, that made their action camera a worldwide success, but criteria of drone market are different. A drone is a flying machine that requires a lot of sensors for optimum performance, best shots and to save itself from any crash.
Karma drone does not offer automatic tracking of the object while Phantom 4 did that work incredibly well. Karma doesn’t come with any obstacle avoidance which makes it much vulnerable to sudden crash, while Phantom 4 Advanced comes with 2 direction obstacle avoidance to save it from sudden smashing into the wall or tree. The Phantom 4 can sense 3D objects around it and will break and reroute to go around them.
Karma offers easy to use functionality with one button take off and landing but that is offered by Phantom 4 as well. The Phantom 4 Advanced features dual compass modules and dual IMU units, making it more reliable when compared Karma drone.
Winner: Phantom 4 is a clear winner of this round as well; overreliance on GPS of Karma might lead to random drifting of drone.
Both the Drones have their own strength and weaknesses, now it depends on your priorities and objective. Let suggest the drones on the bases of the type of users.
Insta Freak: GoPro karma is the best choice for you if you are a traveler, it is easy to carry and is capable of capturing some breathtaking footages.
Technerd: Phantom 4 is going to be the best choice for a Technerd, the availability of different sensors and advanced programs are enough to fascinate you.
Newbie: easy to use was the primary objective of the GoPro karma drone, it’s quite easy to use with gaming style controller. Just try to fly the drone in the open area, else you might end up hitting your drone to some object.
A Pro: Professionals are not afraid of carrying big drone, quality of the footage is the primary objective then Phantom 4 is the best choice, it will help you soot the scene while doing different flight maneuvers. DJI Phantom 4 will allow you to shoot with lot more options in comparison to the Karma.
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