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Hello from Central Coast California


Well-Known Member
Apr 7, 2017
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I'm a bit of a GoPro nut and Love my Karma drone, stabilizer and Grip. I began with GoPro with the original Hero and now have Hero, Hero2, Hero3 Silver, Hero3+ Black, Hero4 Silver, Hero Session, Hero5 Session, and Hero5 Black. Along with those cameras I have many accessories including my two favorite, Karma Drone and Karma Grip. I started my drone adventures with a Syma and then moved on to 3DR Solo and now Karma.

While initially my GoPro's were used for outdoor activities like Surfing, Rock Climbing, biking, and hikes, I now find that I capture mostly moments with my family. Karma has opened new doors to shooting capabilities and greatly improved the quality of footage.

I'm active on the GoPro Support page and also on reddit/r/gopro so feel free to shoot me any questions and I'll try to help if I can.
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Nice!! How do you like the Karma so far? What are your experiences with it? Still deciding on whether or not to buy the GoPro Karma or the Autel X-Star this summer.

I love the way Karma flies and the controller, but the stabilizer is the best part. Being able to go to a location, film some hand held shots, grab some aerial footage, and then get a couple more hours filming all with the same camera is amazing.

Karma flies with filming in mind so it "rolls" to a stop and makes smooth transitions. That's not to say that Karma doesn't have zip to it, but rather it favors smooth movements. Unlike other drones, it is very easy to get the cinematic effect with your shots.
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Very satisfied with the karma. Went to tannersvile virginia to get some pictures of a family log home. Wind was gusting 30 pluse and karma did not budge in the high winds
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Central Coast: as in SLO / 5 Cities area? (I used to live in S. Maria). If so, have you flown by Pismo? What's your approach for take offs and landing in beach/sandy areas?
Yep, SLO / 5 Cities area. Nipomo to be exact.

I usually take off from the top of the case. If there is sand, I try to put a towel down first. I hand land, so sand isn't an issue there.
@JudoSurfer Hey there, just posting some ramblings.

I was up in NorCal thus past weekend. On the way back to SoCal, I stopped by Shell Beach to fly my Mavic (I'm still dealing with GoPro about my Karma.) Conditions were better at Shell Beach compared to the fog and wind on PCH north of SF, but still a bit iffy on the wind -- I didn't want to venture over the water below the cliffs.

One interesting condition I didn't think about before but quickly recognized: seagulls!!! I had a few try and swoop in on the drone, and had to do some evasive maneuvers to keep from getting hit. I found if I flew about 75 feet up, I was above the birds and wasnt accosted as much.

Further down, I stopped by Ventura Fairgrounds to filmed some surfers at the beach. It was overcast, but not foggy. I now like filming when its overcast in the evening as it blocks the direct sunlight and I don't get lens flare that I usually encounter in the evenings.
LOL, yes the seagulls can be very aggressive and daring. I think there must be some nest around dinosaur park as I've had several harass my drones when I fly near there. You only see glimpses of it, but on this particular day I was sure I was going to lose my Karma to one particular seagull that wouldn't stop. I did quite a bit of editing and slowing down the footage. The actual shot is nauseating as I had to keep maneuvering the drone with rapid turns and elevation changes to avoid the bird. The audio was caught by facing a Hero4 Silver with Rode VideoMicro at the rock with the birds.

@JudoSurfer That's an F'ing awesome video!!!

Just wondering: what frame-rate were you shooting at? I noticed you get stuttering/jitter effect too when you pan (yaw) -- this is one of the most annoying artifacts that I'm trying to address with the Karma. I try and handle it by panning slowly, but sometimes that's just hard to maintain in practice.

In the DannySkate062717: what are you using for the autopan?
Thank you!

I think I was in 2.7K/30fps. I think the jitter you're seeing is just bad smoothing out of the video when I was editing. Like I mentioned before, I was doing a lot of rapid turns and elevation changes. I have had jitter before but calibrating the stabilizer in the drone has always fixed it for me. Some of my videos have flights recorded with both Karma and 3DR Solo and I haven't always been good about detailing what shots are with what camera/drone setup. In the "Hundreds of Pelicans" video though, it was all Karma. After filming with Karma I absolutely hate the jitter, props, and sun lines I get from Solo, however it's a fun reliable drone so I still use it.

As far as the autopan in the other video, I use the Blackbolt O-Bolt Amazon.com : Motorized Panning Head Gopro Action Cam Timelapse Variable Speeds and Built-in Rechargeable Battery Blackbolt O-bolt 360 Degree Rotator : Camera & Photo

It works well, has several options and is rechargeable.

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