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Who currently has a GoPro Karma?

askme77

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I've been patiently waiting for the DJI Mavic Pro II, but it looks like this might not happen int the time frame that i wanted.
My fallback was the DJI Mavic Pro, but the more i'm reading about DJI and their customer service, the more concerns that have settled in the back of my mind about a DJI drone.
I looked up a couple of other options which were considered to be "Comparable" to the Mavic, the "Yuneec Typhoon H 4k", "Autel Robotics X-Star Premium" and finally the "GoPro Karma"
From my research, and just the brand of GoPro looks like the Karma might be a great option, as well as to the fact that you can remove the gimbal and use it in hand. However, i wanted to check with any current Karma owners what their thoughts were.
Any advice is much appreciated.
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heloflights

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For me the Karma drone was a no brainer since I had been using GoPro cameras since day 1. I also like the dedicated controller (no smart phone required) and the Passenger app where your assistant can monitor video with a phone or ipad as you fly along. The Karma is well designed and thought out, but does have limitations - specifically 20 minute flight/battery, its weight, and no obstacle sensors, it demands more from the pilot on situation awareness. GoPro has some incredible pricing now on refurbished Karma units, check it out.
 
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Wy1c

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Love my Karma, never had a issue yet, but it is more of a shorter range drone as compared to the Mavic Pro.
 

JCLs

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With cheaper package is a heck of a deal. Have had mine a long time, ever since they first re-released it with no real issues but I have built my own quads and fly rc helies. You will see a lot of stuff here about crashed Karmas and fly offs and I am absolutely sure the vast majority of those incidents based on pilot error rooted in inexperience and total dependency on gps stability control.

You sound like you have flown some. It really helps!!


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Shon

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With cheaper package is a heck of a deal. Have had mine a long time, ever since they first re-released it with no real issues but I have built my own quads and fly rc helies. You will see a lot of stuff here about crashed Karmas and fly offs and I am absolutely sure the vast majority of those incidents based on pilot error routed in inexperience and total dependency on gps stability control.

You sound like you flown some. It really helps!!


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Gotta Piggyback on JCLs comments. I've had the Karma since re-release, Unlike JCL, I did not have previous RC or flying experience. I've had a great time with this drone, flying it pretty much as far as I am comfortable in flying while staying in line of site, and I have had no real issues.

I agree with JCL's perception regarding fly-offs. I review every Gopro Karma Crash on YouTube, and while there certainly are crashes due to manufacture defect, the vast majority are user error. I've come close to crashing myself...but if I did crash... it would have been user error...not a defect with the drone...

I love the versatility of the Karma, The removable gimbals is FANTASTIC, but agree that weight and range are quite limited compared to other drones.

You are not just carrying the drone, you are carrying the batteries too, and due to the limited flight time...you want to carry two or three. they are each as heavy as a brick. I mean seriously...Each battery weighs 536 grams. by comparison the entire MAVIC AIR weighs 430 grams. With 3 or four batteries..the camera... the karma grip, the custom backpack (heavy by itself) all this weight adds up. Not a problem if you are going to "drive to" locations... or don't mind the extra weight on a short hike...but if you are flying in an airplane...this drone package is your carry-on!

Also... I don't like the Fish-eye effect of Gopro cameras in 4K, and while you can edit in post if you have the right software, it will reduce resolution. I typically film in 2.5k anyway...but I wouldn't plan on flying this drone and planning on 4k footage, unless the fish-eye effect is okay with you...

Budget wise... for a complete package with all the drawbacks...the Go Pro Karma is a great deal. Land. Sea. Air. You can film it all.


Currently I have Hero 5 and Karma drone package. I like it. I don't regret the purchase. It has done a great job introducing me to the action video world and expanding my horizons.

Ideally, I would like to have the Hero 7 and maybe the DJI Mavic 2 Pro or Zoom.

Realistically...I'm probably going to upgrade my drone to the Mavic Air due to size and weight in the near future... add an Insta 360 One X to my camera kit for the 360 videos, and stick with the Hero 5 and Karma Gimbal for action camera/underwater shots.

I really like the idea of the Hero 7, and not having to worry about the grip...but there are things that the Karma Grip can do...that the Hero 7 can't by itself...particularly when it comes to horizontal leveling.

The Air doesn't quite have the range or flight time of its other DJI counterparts...But the Mavic 2 series is a little too expensive for the incremental gains it offers, and i'm willing to sacrifice some quality for a drone with a smaller profile.
 

thelevigator

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I got a GoPro Karma for Christmas and have been practicing when possible in this weather. I crashed on first flight and broke all props. User error, absolutely. This is really a fun product. It is great for a beginner like myself because of its built in stabilization.
My wife thought I needed a new toy and got me the whole package with extra battery and 128 gig chip. Who knew I would need more props? I have bought spares and am learning as I go.
 

ChuiLui

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I bought the phantom 4 pro about 2 years ago when it was first release. Earlier this month I was looking to purchase a new GoPro camera, while I was at Best Buy I noticed Karma was on sale for $799 and it included the Karma grip and GoPro hero 6. I knew at that point it was a no brainer since I was buying a new camera why not just buy the karma set which included extras at a great price. You do have to be a bit more careful with this drone as it has no sensors and requires more attention from the pilot. I also noticed the karma went down another $100 bucks to $699 at Best Buy this week. So if you are interested it’s a great deal.
 

johan

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I am not an expert pilot and hubson and karma was my first drones. Learned easy and had broken props on karma 3 times . Bought master airscrew props and also had pilot error crash against myself with prop damage on my body haha. Love the drone with all its gadgets. Only problem is living in South Africa its difficult to get spare props for drone. I can advise you to be karma , it a lovely stable easy to fly drone.
 

james shih

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Yes, it is a fun device after millions of stress, you will find out it plays like one of your closed friend, try to read some books like "Gopro: How to use the Gopro Karma Drone, by Hetrick Jordan" or "Livin' the Drone Life:An insider's guide to flying drones for fun and profit, by Paul Aitken, Rob Rurdick, Tim Ray", and getting more knowledge, then you will really enjoy it.
 

IM35461

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Karma was my first drone but after loss of control and it nearly hitting a building (the only one for 200yrds in any direction) I lost faith in it.
Bought based on price, GoPro reputation and to use my hero 5.

So after that I bought a mavic air. Lot less to carry but inferior camera.

I then bought a Hero 6 thinking it was better than Hero 5 but still makes fish eye 4K videos (no linear option). So Karma still had that issue.

So I got the Phantom 4 Pro V2 and that works the best but cost twice as much and is a lot to carry around.

Also have an Anafi which again does not have the best video but is easy to transport and pretty quiet.

Out of the four Anafi has done the most flying.
 
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James Hatch

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Welcome on board IM35461:
As long as you don't push the envelope and use the drone for planned photographic work with a strong GPS network you will be happy with the results:

Here is a sample of battery care: https://youtu.be/3XnuqomqIf0
 
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IM35461

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I made a YouTube Playlist of lots of more recent Karma user flight videos.

You will see that many Karma drones are still in use plus of course new owners and many get good results (and the odd malfunction and crash)


Enjoy :)
 

JCLs

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Welcome on board IM35461:
As long as you don't push the envelope and use the drone for planned photographic work with a strong GPS network you will be happy with the results:

Here is a sample of battery care: https://youtu.be/3XnuqomqIf0
What is a “strong GPS Network” and how do you tell?


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

james shih

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The more you fly the more confidence you get, when you get used to the performance you will be comfortable when the karma is in the sky, I fly the karma mainly for taking the photos, so I don't need much how far or how high karma can do, I did have some fly with weak connection between controller and karma in some specific locations, but karma then return by itself, normally I tap the "x" to stop the auto back and fly back manually, the most important thing is to start in an open and no obstacle location, fly high enough to avoid the possible accident.
If interested you can check my Flickr side as: James Shih
 
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IM35461

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UAV Forecast have Android and iOS apps useful for checking current GPS coverage for a given location plus information on no fly zones.
 

Armydiver

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I have had my Karma for a while now but normally only fly it on vacation. The BVI's last summer and the video is incredible. I crash it on a regular basis though, like today in Pensacola in high winds. I was trying to land on the deck and a gust of wind literally pushed in to me. Nice cuts for sure and would recommend against getting hit by it, at all cost. Will be more careful in the future.

I'm just going to buy a bunch of blades before they go out of stock. :)
 
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Shon

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Ouch! I've come *This close* to crashing into myself. Actually...I landed on a slightly uneven rock, and the drone tipped over. I rushed over to it too quickly, almost shredding my pants legs, but not actually injuring myself.
 

mjbok

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Karma was my first drone but after loss of control and it nearly hitting a building (the only one for 200yrds in any direction) I lost faith in it.
Bought based on price, GoPro reputation and to use my hero 5.

So after that I bought a mavic air. Lot less to carry but inferior camera.

I then bought a Hero 6 thinking it was better than Hero 5 but still makes fish eye 4K videos (no linear option). So Karma still had that issue.

So I got the Phantom 4 Pro V2 and that works the best but cost twice as much and is a lot to carry around.

Also have an Anafi which again does not have the best video but is easy to transport and pretty quiet.

Out of the four Anafi has done the most flying.
You pointed out the one thing that I absolutely hate about the Karma (via gopro). The lack of a linear option in 4k (and some modes) makes this a defacto 1080p camera. Curious why you say the air has an inferior camera. It can't do the frame-rates, but it can do 4k that doesn't look distorted which is far more important to me.

I had the OG Phantom. It had GPS and RTH, but nothing else. No video, no modes, no obstacle avoidance. Might be my mind playing tricks on me, but damn that bird was fast. Loaded a GoPro Hero2 on it and though the pics would be great the video was absolutely worthless (jello). Shelved it. Then I got a Yuneec bird. Crashed it on the second flight. Replaced with a Typhoon H. Since then I have gotten a Spark, an Air, an Evo, and a Karma, in that order.

It's weird because the Karma almost feels like a toy drone due to its limitations, but it (besides the H) is the largest and the heaviest. It is easy to fly, but the range is awful. Love the controller. Love the specialty modes. If it didn't have a $400 camera (that is used for other things) attached to it I would see it like I see the Spark, a disposable drone.

For anyone going to a Karma from any modern (non-50 dollar POS drone) there is one major difference. Every other drone I fly you have to push down on the sticks hard to land. With no obstacle avoidance if you do that with the Karma it will bounce. It reminds me of the OG Phantom in that respect.

I don't dislike it by any stretch, but unless you already have a GoPro (or want to get one as part of a package) it is the last drone I would recommend.
 
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Shon

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I like the simplicity of the Karma. It is fairly easy to connect to the remote and start flying.

I’ve always felt the comparison between the Karma and differenr drones is an apples to oranges comparison. The Karma is a package of accessories for a GoPro action camera. It not only includes a drone, but also includes the Karma Grip. The drone is an areal platform for the canera. It makes it very easy to colorgrade and combine footage to seamlessly tell a larger story. It’s a complement when I see folks commenting on my videos thinking I’m flying in Nationa Parks, when I am simply using the Grip. It is a great package at a budget price. It is too bad that GoPro had other business problems that forces their hand in the decision to discontinue this product.
 

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