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What is the Smart Controller for?

29 May 2019 by Adrienn Kerekes 0 Comments

The DJI Smart Controller is one of those accessories that you don't think you need until you try it.

For a long time I used tablets to fly my drones. Although I really enjoyed the iPad's huge display, the many accessories made the whole experience bittersweet. Because it really only takes a minute to assemble... but time wasn't really the problem. You had to deal with different cables, fasteners, the iPad, and even its handling separately, and I didn't even mention the different operating times of the devices.

For the first time, I got a taste of what it's like to use a built-in display when flying a Phantom 4 Pro+ . I have to say that from the delivery to the launch to the flight, it was a much more pleasant experience for me.

Unpacking

Unpacking the DJI Smart Controller is extremely easy. The box contains only the remote control, extra control levers, an adapter capable of fast charging, a USB-C cable and a guide. And the "how to assemble" steps can all be found on the DJI website.

Properties

For me, efficiency is the first and most important aspect. It is a HUGE advantage that I can fly anywhere within seconds by picking up the remote control and the drone. The fact that you don't have to worry about fasteners and cables greatly simplifies the flying process.

Thanks to its 1000 nit brightness, the DJI Smart Controller can be used well even on a hot day.

Although I love flying with the big iPad, the experience provided by the new remote control far surpasses that. The built-in display of the controller has a brightness of 1000 Nit, which is similar to the 5.5-inch Crystal Sky monitor. This brightness allows me to fly even in bright daylight without a monitor shade.

You can count on the DJI Smart Controller even in extreme conditions!

Another, often forgotten, useful feature of the Smart Controller is that it can be used even in extreme temperature conditions. I've had several flights that I had to miss because my tablet simply shut down either because of the extreme heat or because of the extreme cold. The proven ability of this remote control to operate between -20°C and +40°C is an advantageous feature that should be highlighted more.

The 2.5 hour operating time is an additional advantage compared to factory remote controls. When using the controller that came with the drone, not only did its battery drain quickly, but also your cell phone's battery. The all-in-one design of the new Smart Controller greatly simplifies things and reduces the sources of potential problems.

Size

In terms of size, the Smart Controller is the same size as a traditional remote control assembled with a mobile phone. I thought it would take up more space, but as it turned out, it fits easily into the existing case and the size difference is not significant.

The placement of the control levers on the Smart Controller is a bit wider, but this fits better with thicker grips. DJI kept the display design placed under the control levers, so for those who are used to traditional controllers, flying with the Smart Controller will be a familiar experience.

Compatibility

Since the DJI Smart Controller uses the latest OcuSync 2.0 data connection protocol, it is currently only compatible with Mavic 2 series drones ( Pro , Zoom , and Enterprise ).

Unfortunately, it cannot be used with the older Mavic , Air and Spark series, which is a real shame. But, as we know, these types of limitations are always inherent in new technologies and developments. Looking to the future, however, it is positive that DJI has stated that the Smart Controller will be compatible with all new drones - I think until they develop an even more efficient data transfer protocol than the current one.

"GoShare" and Applications

The Smart Controller is full of little extras that further enhance the user experience. At the top, for example, there is instead a microSD card slot, which can be used to further expand the storage capacity of the controller, or for on-site backup, or even for data copying. Using the HDMI output known from the Phantom 4 Pro+, we can watch the live image through an external monitor or smart glasses. The new GoShare feature makes it easy to quickly download and transfer images and HD videos to your mobile device for editing and sharing. With the introduction of additional new functions, such as SkyTalk and Waypoints 2.0, the value of the Smart Controller will be further appreciated.

Who is the Smart Controller designed for?

At a price of HUF 213,900, not many people will make the purchase decision lightly. What is worth keeping in mind is that this is a premium accessory that is not absolutely necessary for flying. The Smart Controller is very similar to the Crystal Sky monitors, against which similar arguments / counter-arguments were voiced when they were released. Monitors are also more in the premium category, which are usually purchased by users who are more dedicated to or live in aviation: professional videographers, photographers, search and rescue units, and those who frequently fly in highly variable conditions such as extreme temperatures. between conditions.

Simply put, the Smart Controller is made for those who want to minimize the preparations related to flying, for those who want a remote control that is more visible and usable, thus providing a better user experience. Of course, this comes at a price, but once you start flying with such an integrated system, you will never give it up.

source: Aldryn Estacio @ DJI.com

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