Showing posts with label Drones. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Drones. Show all posts

Video: Beautiful South Africa by Drone

If you want to know why I love Africa so much for a travel destination, all you have to do is take one look at this video. Shot using a DJI Mavic Pro, this short but sweet clip provides an amazing look at an amazing country. From landscapes to wildlife to breathtaking sunsets, this has it all.

SOUTH AFRICA - A Mavic Tale from Rind-Raja Picture Company on Vimeo.

Video: Cape Town by Drone

Cape Town, and the surrounding area, is an incredibly beautiful place, and what better way to explore those landscapes than with a drone? This short clip takes to the skies to give us a bird's eye view of this spectacular section of South Africa. If you've never been there, it needs to be on your list and this will help you to understand why.

Video: Ottsjö, Sweden by Air and in Timelapse

We'll round out a busy week here at The Adventure Blog with a beautiful and tranquil video that was shot by drone over the Ottsjö region in Sweden. The landscapes captured there are nothing short of spectacular, and of course the Northern Lights are on full display at this time of year. This is three minutes of pure bliss, with some amazing footage of a stunning place. Sit back and enjoy as you head into the weekend.

OTTSJÖ - BY AIR AND TIMELAPSE (4K) from Marcus Möller on Vimeo.

Video: GoPro Invites Us to Meet the Karma Drone (Again!)

Yesterday was a big day for GoPro. That's because, after a three-month delay following a recall, it's much anticipated Karma drone has finally gone back on sale again. The Karma was unveiled last September, and then went on sale in October, only to be pulled from store shelves a few weeks later because of a design flaw that caused it to lose power mid-flight. That flaw has now been corrected, and the Karma is up and flying once again. In this video, we are reminded of what the Karma, when paired with a GoPro Hero 5 camera and the company's awesome new Karma Grip stabilizer are capable of. While it's true that GoPro has fallen on hard times a bit financially of late, their equipment is still top notch and easy to work with. Sure, this clip is essentially a commercial for that gear, but it is also an indication of what you can do with it when filming for your own projects.

Video: Drones Over Peru

The stunning and diverse landscapes of Peru are on display in this video, which was shot using a drone to get some of the best vantage points possible. In the short clip you'll see mountain, canyons, deserts, and other spectacular vistas. If you're needing an escape from the daily grind today, sit back and enjoy this clip. It is four minutes of bliss.

High Above Peru from Andreas Giesen on Vimeo.

Video: K2 By Drone!

There is no question that K2 is amongst the most dangerous and difficult mountains to climb on the entire planet. It also happens to be located in a remote and beautiful place that most of us won't have the opportunity to see for ourselves. But, thanks to this wonderful short film, you can make the journey, and get some stunning images of the landscapes around the mountain too. It was shot by drone pilot and filmmaker Petr Jan Juračka, who traveled to K2 with Czech climber Klára Kolouchová. The results speak for themselves. Check out the clip below to get a look at this incredible place.

Video: Rise - Exploring Oregon by Drone

The state of Oregon is an incredibly beautiful place, but it never seems to get its proper due, in part because it is competing for attention with other western states like Colorado, Montana, and Utah. But in this video, Oregon gets the attention it deserves, as it is four minutes of spectacular footage captured by drone. The results are some impressive landscapes that reveal some of the best hidden gems in the American West.

RISE - Oregon Aerial 4K from Michael Shainblum on Vimeo.

Video: Ethereal - Iceland by Drone

This beautiful video was shot over some of the most spectacular landscapes in Iceland. You'll see snowcapped peaks, tranquil rivers, flowing waterfalls, and much more. But, what was most striking to me was the incredible skies that can be seen over the various shots. There are colors in the clouds that are rare and fleeting in most places, but here they are natural and breathtaking. Sit back and enjoy this three-minute clip, which features some of the best footage I've seen in some time.

Ethereal: Aerial Motion Timelapse in 4K60 from Henry Jun Wah Lee / Evosia on Vimeo.

Video: Norway's Spectacular Lofoten Region Captured by Drone

The title for this post pretty much says all you need to know. In this video clip we travel to the remote and rugged Lofoten region of Norway where we get an amazing view of the spectacular mountains found there. This is five minutes of pure bliss with some stunning shots of a region of the world where few of us will ever get to visit. Definitely a great clip to start the week.

Video: Introducing the GoPro Karma

Last week, just before I left for my backpacking trip to Bryce Canyon, GoPro introduced its first drone, the Karma. I barely had enough time to share some thoughts on this new UAV before I skipped town, but this video does a great job of showing off what it can do. While it doesn't look like a revolution in drone technology, it does appear that it will be an affordable solution that has a lot to offer those looking to add a drone to their collection of gear. From what I've heard, the footage that it captures is quite good, and the fact that it can fold up and be easily transported makes it a good choice for use in remote locations. Looking forward to learning more about it in the days ahead. It should go on sale on October 23. Here's a sneak peek at what to expect.

Video: Drones Capture Close Encounter with Whales

It is tough to top last week's video in which a curious whale approached a passing boat, providing some spectacular footage of a humpback that was very up close and personal. But, this clip will come very close as it was shot in the South Pacific near the islands of New Caledonia. Using a drone, the crew of this ship were able to capture not only the incredibly deep blue ocean waters found there, but also several whales that once again wandered up to their boat. It is a truly amazing scene to behold and one that I think you'll find as enchanting as I did.

Video: A Drone's Eye View of Australia's Uluru

If there is one iconic image from Australia's outback that is famous the world over it is probably Uluru. This giant stone monolith rises above the surrounding landscape, etching an imposing profile against the horizon. It is a place that has been held scared by the Aboriginal people of that continent for thousands of years, and it is a wonder to behold. In this video we get a look at Uluru that we've seldom seen before – from the air. Shot using a drone, the images in this short clip are gorgeous and impressive. It's the next best thing to going to the Red Center to see it for yourself.

Video: Remote Iceland as Seen by a Drone

Take a drone's eye view of remote Iceland in this video, which gives us stunning views of the landscapes that are found there. You'll catch a glimpse of everything from rugged coastlines, snowcapped peaks, and lush forests, with just about everything in between. You'll discover a place that is epic in scale and is calling out to be explored. After watching the 2+ minute clip you'll begin to understand why Iceland holds such an allure with travelers.

Gear Closet: Vivitar Air Defender X Camera Drone

If you're like me, you've probably been intrigued with the potential of drones over the past few years, but put off by the steep price of entry to buying one. While the prices of drones have continued to come down, and their sophistication and functionality have gone up, it can still be a bit intimidating to think about purchasing one and learning to fly it. Fortunately, there are some new options that make it easier to buy in, and discover what it is like to actually use one of these things in the field. For instance, the Vivitar Air Defender X Camera Drone is an affordable and fun UAV that has a lot of the same options as other drones, but at a fraction of the price.

Okay, before I go too far into my thoughts on the Air Defender, lets be clear what this drone is and is not. For example, it is not a competitor to the DJI Phantom line of drones, which are larger, more powerful and definitely more pricey. Instead, this is a lightweight, easy to fly, and very affordable entry-level drone that you'll probably have a lot of fun with.

Checking out the specs on the Air Defender you'll discover that it has a lot of options for the price. For instance, it comes equipped with 16.1 MP camera that is capable of streaming video and images to your smartphone when it connects to the drone via WiFi. It also has a range of about 200 meters, and a flight time of about 20 minutes when using the two supplied batteries. It is also wrapped in 64 individual LED lights, which makes it easy to spot even in dark conditions. This also gives it a fun, unique look that helps in navigation too.


Inside the box, you'll find the Air Defender itself, a full-featured remote control, complete with smartphone holder, two rechargeable batteries for the drone, a set of regular AA batteries for the remote, and a USB recharging cable.

It takes about 2 hours to charge one of the batteries using the proprietary USB cable, so when you get the drone home, you'll have to be patient for a bit before you start using it. I'd recommend charging both batteries before making your first flight, because you'll burn through the rechargeable battery pack quite quickly, and you'll want to be able to put the second one in and fly some more before you run out of juice.

Piloting the Air Defender takes a bit of time to master, in part because it is surprisingly quick. There is a switch on the remote that allows you to limit the speed on the aircraft to 30, 60, or 100% and I definitely recommend keeping it on the slower speed when you first start. I expected the 30% setting to be slow and easy to master when starting out, but it was surprisingly quick even on that setting. At 100% power you'll want to have plenty of room, because it is fast, fast, fast.

After some practice you'll start to get the hang of flying this drone, as the controls work as you would expect for the most part. The only issue I had was getting the drone to fly at a level hight, as the joystick on the remote that controls vertical doesn't have a "return to zero" setting. This would have come in very handy, but instead I often find myself having to make minute adjustments to the stick just to get the drone to fly at a height that I would like.

If you don't want to use the included remote to pilot the drone, you can also connect it to your Android or iOS device via an app as well. This gives you the ability to fly the UAV as well, and activate its camera. In fact, you can actually get a drone's eye view of the flight right on your mobile device's screen. This is of course a lot of fun, and gives you the option to snap photos or capture video footage as well. Personally, I preferred using the actual remote control, but would have still like to have been able to use my iPhone as a screen and to control the camera. I haven't figured out if it is possible to do this however, as it appears that only one of the remotes can be used at a time.

As you've probably noticed, there is one word that keeps appearing in this review over and over. That would be the word "fun." That's because it is the best way to describe what it is like to fly the Air Defender, and judging from the crowds that gather when I break it out, a lot of people seem to find it enjoyable to watch as well. While it may be true that this isn't a professional grade drone used for filmmaking and photography shoots, it is still just a blast to fly it around, capturing images of your own.

As fun as it is to fly, the absolute best part of the Air Defender just might be the price. The drone costs just $99, which is well below the entry fee for most other drones that have a decent set of features. Basically, for $100 you can get a UAV that gives you a taste of what the more expensive drones can do, allowing you to consider investing in something more sophisticated, or simply enjoying the aircraft for what it is. That alone makes this worth consideration.

You can probably tell that I have really enjoyed flying the Vivitar Air Defender X Camera Drone. Yes, it has some limitations, but it also has a surprising amount of technology packed in as well. As long as you go in knowing that, I'll bet you'll have fun with this drone too. Honestly, it's hard not to like it.

Men's Journal Has 25 Gifts for the Adventurous Dad

It's nearly June, which means Father's Day is just around the corner. If you're looking for the perfect gift for dad this year, Men's Journal is here to help. They've created a list of 25 gifts for the adventurous dad in your life with some great suggestions that even those of us who aren't dad's can appreciate.

Some of the items that make MJ's list include the Timex Expedition Scout watch, which blends classic good looks with modern sensibilities, and the Sony Cyber-Shot RX100 II, which is widely considered to be the best point and shoot camera on the market today. You'll also find a drone, an inflatable stand-up paddleboard, and an awesome camp stove from BioLite.

There really is something for just about every kind of dad on this list. Whether they're a hardcore outdoor nut, gadget enthusiast, or aspiring athlete, you'll find some cool suggestions for gifts for your father too. Best of all, most of the items are fairly affordably too, so you won't have to break the bank to find the right gift either.

Father's Day is still a few weeks off, but it's a good time to start planning. Check out the entire list here.

Adventure Tech: GoPro Delays Release of Karma Drone

It hasn't been a good year or so for GoPro. The action cam maker has seen a drop in sales, which is now hitting its bottomline in significant ways. Worse yet, one of the company's most anticipated new products – the Karma drone – has now been delayed.

Yesterday, GoPro announced its quarterly results, and to say that they were dire would be an understatement. The tech company saw its revenue drop by nearly 50%, and earnings plummeted from a $22 million profit for this quarter last year, to a $121 million loss this year. A major part of that swing was the company writing off older camera models that it discontinued.

But the news that is most disappointing fans of GoPro is the announcement that the release of the Karma has now been pushed back until the coming winter. It was originally expected to become available to consumers in the first half of 2016, but we'll now have to wait just a bit longer. And since winter doesn't technically start until December 21, it seems likely that the drone won't see the light of day until 2017.

In an effort to diversity its business, GoPro has been looking for other sources of revenue. The Karma is seen as one part of that plan, while investing heavily in virtual reality films is another. The camera maker has also revealed a special system designed to shoot 360º video in stunning 4k resolutions. But the current generation of VR is still in its infancy, and far from a sure bet, so it could be some time before these ventures start to turn around GoPro's fortunes.

Meanwhile, other companies continue to crank out new drones that are only becoming better and better. You have to wonder if the Karma will arrive a bit too late.

Video: Over the Enchanted Land of New Zealand

Filmed back in December of 2015, this video takes us to New Zealand, where filmmaker Richard Patterson traveled for his honeymoon. He had the foresight to bring a drone with him, and as a result we get these fantastic images of one of the most beautiful countries on Earth. Sit back and enjoy this one. It's a perfect way to go off into the weekend.

Over Enchanted Lands // New Zealand from Richard Patterson on Vimeo.

Video: AIRTime - Take a Drone Flight Around the World

Shot in 12 different countries over 7 months, this video takes us on a globe-spanning adventure shot with the use of a drone. Some of the stops include the Netherlands, Greece, the U.S., Canada, South Africa, and Myanmar, amongst others. It is a beautiful look at some stunning landscapes, and a sharp reminder of how amazing our planet can be.

AIRTime from Christian Grewe on Vimeo.

Video: Xavier De Le Rue Demonstrates the HEXO+ Autonomous Drone

We've been following the development of the HEXO+ autonomous drone for sometime now, and have been intrigued by its capabilities. In this video, we get to see the unique gadget put to the test, as extreme snowboarder Xavier De Le Rue shows us how the HEXO+ performs as it follows him down the slopes. This kind of tool will allow us to make interesting new adventure films completely on our own, and the technology offers up some interesting possibilities for the future. I'd love to get my hands on one of these drones to test myself. It looks like a lot of fun!

Video: Tusker Trail's 2015 Kilimanjaro Climb for Valor

Last year I was fortunate enough to join a team of extraordinary men and women to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa as part of Tusker Trail's Climb for Valor – a charity climb designed to raise funds for Duskin & Stephens Foundation. While we were on the mountain, my friend Edan Cain captured some outstanding footage using a drone. In this video, you get 10+ minutes of the footage he shot, giving you an idea of what it is like to trek this iconic mountain. And if you feel inspired to want to do this for yourself, there is still time to join the 2016 edition of the Climb for Valor. Find out more here.

Climb for Valor 2015 from Edan Cain on Vimeo.