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GoPro Quits Drone Business | Goodbye To The Karma Drone

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So GoPro has made it official that they are quitting the drone business and that the Karma Drone has been discontinued. They have however stated that they will continue to offer support for the Karma drone to existing customers no different to how they still offer support for their older camera models.  Around the same time information has surface that GoPro has been possibly looking to sell the GoPro company. This information really makes you wonder about the future of GoPro and if they can survive. Tough competition in the small action camera market not to mention smart phones that are now shooting amazing 4K video. How does GoPro move a head and thrive. They have recently entered the 360 camera market and I believe they are really putting a lot of hope on the success of their 360 Fusion camera.

Personally I think they gave up to quick on the Karma drone, They have discontinued it about a year after its release and I think they should have pushed forward with the Karma 2. The Karma was criticized as a lackluster drone missing many key feature that modern drones have such as obstacle avoidance. But as a Karma drone pilot even despite some of its shortcomings it was a great drone to fly and could produce stunning imagery. I think a Karma version 2 with sensors, a bigger battery and smaller design could have really brought the product and GoPro to a new level.

Less competition in the drone market is not good for anyone, prices could go up and innovation could slow and even get sloppy. However even though the drone business has been shuttered I will still continue to fly and enjoy mine.

RIP Karma Drone.

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DJI Spark

Smatree Portable Charging Station For DJI Spark | Review and Thoughts

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One of the nice features of the DJI Spark is the ability to charge it via a USB cable and a power bank. You can plug the Spark into a power bank and it will charge which is great when you out on location and you have burned through all your batteries. The problem is you can only charge one battery at a time and worse your drone is tied up while charging. This is where the portable charging station by Smatree comes in. Essentially this unit is a 8100 mAh power bank with battery charging bays for the DJI Spark built in. This portable charger allows you to charge 3 spark batteries simultaneously in about 45 minutes…that is supper fast. It can charge a total of 6 batteries before the entire unit needs a recharged. There is also a USB port on the side of the unit that can be used to recharge your Spark controller or even your smart phone. The charger does have some weight to it (12.8 ounces) but still very portable and easily packed in a backpack.

Smatree Portable Charger (Updated Version)

I want to point out that Smatree has updated the portable charging station since I filmed my video and what a great update it was. The old version used a micro USB connector to recharge the power bank at (5V/2A) this worked fine, however it takes over 14 hours to recharge at this rate. The updated unit now comes with it own dedicated charger that plugs into a wall socket and directly into the power bank. The new charging specs are (8.7V/4A) and the unit can now be recharged from empty in about 3.5 to 4 hours. Such a welcome upgrade!

This is a fantastic charger and I think it is a must have accessory for every DJI Spark pilot. I really wish all drones would adopt this method of USB charging, It would save a fortune not having to buy so many extra batteries just so you can have a full day of flying.

Updated Charging Station (USA) https://amzn.to/2ql9Gcp
Updated Charging Station (CAN) https://amzn.to/2v6Yp4u

DJI Spark (DJI Website) https://goo.gl/DvoqK1
DJI Spark (USA Amazon) https://amzn.to/2HoDaxi
DJI Spark (CANADA Amazon) https://amzn.to/2GM5eJX


You can charge 3 DJI Spark batteries in 45 minutes simultaneously in the Smatree portable charger.

 

Here you can see the new connector on the updated Smatree portable charger for DJI Spark. Now at 8.7V/4A.

 

The new dedicated charging brick for the updated Smatree portable charging station.

 

A side by side comparison of the old charger vs. the new charger. Updated charger on the left and old charger on the right.

 

Updated Smatree portable charging station for DJI Spark.

 

Size comparison of the Smatree portable charger beside the DJI Spark

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DJI Mavic Air

DJI Sling Bag Review | Best Case For The DJI Goggles

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If you have been looking for a storage solution for your DJI Goggles you may want to take a look at the DJI Sling Bag. This sling bag style case is designed to hold the DJI Goggles as well as a Mavic Pro or Mavic Air, it also works well with the DJI Spark. One of the really nice features of the DJI Sling bag is the fact that it is convertible which means if you are only going to be storing the goggles inside, it zips up small so you don’t have all the extra bulk. However if you wish to carry a drone in the pack as well, there is plenty of room. It can hold a total of 3 Mavic Pro batteries plus remote, or 5 Mavic Air batteries and remote.

This bag looks and feels like a premium product, something that I have come to expect from DJI gear. One thing I have not been able to find out online is if the bag is water-resistant. Due to the design of the zippers and material I would have to say it is. Overall a nice case for the DJI Goggles. Watch our review video featuring the DJI Goggles sling bag.

DJI Sling Bag (DJI Website) https://goo.gl/pKvG7L
DJI Sling Bag (Amazon) https://amzn.to/2J9fgps

Mavic Air (DJI Website) https://goo.gl/t74LaQ
Mavic Air (Amazon) http://amzn.to/2EccQaM

DJI Goggles RE (DJI Website) https://goo.gl/qaWFrQ
DJI Goggle RE (Amazon) http://amzn.to/2HC1meI


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