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Karma thoughts/observations/question

mjbok

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I bought the Karma because it came with a gopro and the Karma grip. Those two things combined cost almost as much as I paid for the whole package. The drone is more or less an afterthought. I might fly it here and there, but not as my primary drone.

The first time I flew it I lost connection and it immediately landed. This is one of the things that concerned me from the research I had done. I was literally withing 20 feet of the drone. It landed. I power cycled it and I flew it for one battery. Things I noticed.
1. It is loud - probably the loudest drone I have
2. It drifts - more than any other drone I've flown it will drift while hovering
3. It kind of slowly stops when you let off the controls. Rather than stop moving, inertia of the drone has it go quite a bit further than other drones I've used
4. The range is awful. I'm not talking about disconnects, I'm talking about losing (partially or total) the video feed. At 100 feet up and 1-200 feet out you should not get image drop outs. This makes the Spark look like a range king.
5. I love the controller. Probably my favorite. All self-contained, no need for cables, mounts, etc. Wish the Air had a controller like this.
6. Manual landing with no downward sensors is...different. With most drones (if you don't hand catch or use auto-land) you have to throttle down to get it to touch down. With the Karma if you do that you will bounce off the ground. Also with above mentioned drifting while hovering, land is much more difficult with this drone compared to others
7. Orbit works extremely well (compared to the Evo) Very impressed
8. Image quality is very good and comparable to other drones
9. The image is very different focal length wise compared to other drones.

The next one is almost certainly unique to my drone.
1. Need to reseat the stablizer when changing batteries. For some reason every time I change batteries (or remove/charge/reinsert the same battery) I have to unlock and relock the stabilizer. This can't be correct.
2. The connection of the stablizer to the drone seems very loose and it feels like more force is needed to put it in/remove it than would be expected.

The last few are unique to the GoPro itself (has nothing to do with the Karma)
1. It stinks that 4k can't be linear and has to be wide
2. It stinks that time lapse video (even in 1080) has to be in wide
3. Getting the GoPro in and out of the stabilizer requires more force than I'm happy with. Afraid I'll break it.

All in all it is okay as a specific use drone (short range, orbits, not too high, not too far). I would not recommend it to anyone as you can get an Air in the same price range...unless you're like me and the drone is secondary and you're more interested in the GoPro and the grip.
 

Shon

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Sounds like you might have a defective stabilizer or cradle for your camera, if you are constantly having to re-seat it. It might help you with range and signal strength.

That said, your review generally isn’t far from my own experience.
 

mjbok

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Sounds like you might have a defective stabilizer or cradle for your camera, if you are constantly having to re-seat it. It might help you with range and signal strength.

That said, your review generally isn’t far from my own experience.
I was wondering if it might be defective. I just got it (in the last month). Might do some bench testing to see if I can consistently replicate it. I think I actually don't have to reseat it, just unlock, relock it. It's an annoyance now, but if it problematic out of the box how long until it completely breaks. Also, is it on the drone itself or the stabilizer? In the Grip it has no issues.
 
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Shon

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I was wondering if it might be defective. I just got it (in the last month). Might do some bench testing to see if I can consistently replicate it. I think I actually don't have to reseat it, just unlock, relock it. It's an annoyance now, but if it problematic out of the box how long until it completely breaks. Also, is it on the drone itself or the stabilizer? In the Grip it has no issues.
Yeah...when I read your review I wondered the same thing. I'm wondering if the range issues might somehow be connected. I mean...don't get me wrong... This drone has an incredibly short range compared to others...but it seems like you should be flying higher and farther before starting to experience issues.
 

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