I have wanted a drone for a long time. I was pretty set on buying the Phantom 4. But then GoPro came out with the Karma. And then, today, DJI announced the Mavic Pro and threw another wrench in my plans.
So the question is, which drone should I get, the Mavic Pro or the Phantom 4 or the GoPro Karma?
I think it boils down to, what are my highest priorities? Performance?Portability? Platform? (Those all happen to start with P :)
Let’s talk about similarities. They all have 4k video.
Phantom 4 (known as P4) has 45 mph top speed vs Mavic top speed it 40 mph vs Karma top speed of 35 mph.
Battery life follows exact pattern. P4 28 minutes, Mavic has 27 minutes of flight time, and the Karma has 20 minutes.
Karma (thanks to the Hero 5) can do 1080p at 120fps, P4 can do 1080P at 120FPS, and the Mavic can do 1080p at 96 frames a second. I don’t know how much of a difference that will make. Chime in if you know.
Let’s talk about how it looks. On the Mavic, I don’t love the gimbal cover. I get why you might need it for landing, but it looks a little odd. What if it gets scratched? I can get over that probably.
EDIT — It appears the bubble is removed before takeoff. It is just for protection during storage, which makes a lot of sense. On the Phantom the legs protected the gimbal. No big legs on the Mavic, so the bubble is needed.
I love how small the Mavic folds to. Size of a water bottle is no joke.
For the Karma, I actually really like how it looks. Has the look of a tool, something, I would like to own and use.
As for the P4, the looks are something you get over. It actually looks way better that the P3. Better lines, more Apple-like. But in the end utilitarian, I get why it looks like it does, but nothing sci-fi. (But I do love the all white.)
Did I mention how small the Mavic folds up to be? Tiny. I love that.
Portability. I think this will be huge for me. I love to hike, and camp, and explore and the size of the Mavic is very tempting. That is what tempted me the most about the Karma as well. The ability to fit both drones into a real backpack is amazing. The backpack systems for the Phantom are quite large. This might be the biggest difference for me.
The GoPro Karma will cost $799, with no camera. With theHero 5 Black it costs $1,099. The Mavic Pro with the built-in camera and costs $1,000. (You can get the Mavic without the remote but why?) The P4 costs $1,199 with camera.
So what do you think? Which drone would you get?
I will be updating this post as I learn more.