Most of you already know that the DJI Spark is a fantastic little drone stocked full of the company’s now signature technologies. Spark is also the first drone DJI has released that doesn’t come with a dedicated remote controller — unless you bought it with the Fly More Combo.
But is controlling Spark with just your phone or tablet enough? Do you really need the remote controller? Well, read on to find out some of the pluses and minuses of forking out for a Spark remote controller or not. Happy flying!
Spark with Phone or Tablet
For many, controlling a drone with your phone or tablet is a brand new experience. Firstly, you’ll have the convenience of not having to take a controller around with you as it’s just one less thing to worry about. The price point is another advantage. The Spark remote controller costs $119, which amounts to at least two new Spark batteries ($55 each).
On the plus side, extra batteries mean staying in the air longer and getting to use Spark’s innovative Gesture Control, and Quick Shot intelligent functions for some fantastic photos. However, if you’re starting out and Spark is your first drone, going without a remote controller might be a smart way to gauge how much you want to take your droning to the next level.
Let’s look at some of the advantages there are in having the remote controller.
Spark with Remote Controller
As we’ve mentioned already, using your phone or tablet is fine. However, to maximizing Spark’s full potential, you’ll need the remote controller to fly further, go faster, and generally just do a handful of very cool flying options.
One of the most noticeable differences of flying Spark without a remote controller is the fact that you’re limited to a distance of 328 ft (100 m) with a height restriction of only 50 m (164 ft). With a remote controller, Spark’s transmission distance extends to 1.2 mi (2 km) while increasing the height limit to 500 ft (152 m).
The remote controller also reinvigorates Spark’s rotors with a dedicated Sport mode switch, pushing our little hero to a top speed of 31 mph (50 kph). Not too shabby.
More than that, the remote controller is compatible with and connects to most types of iPhone and Android models. And once you’re ready to go, you’ll have the remote’s function buttons at your fingertips, including controls for the camera as well as a dedicated Return to Home button.
The obvious benefit here is that you’re now flying Spark with actual control sticks rather than virtual ones, which makes for a more satisfying overall flight experience. By using your screen as a controller, you start to fumble around in the app too much, losing visibility. With your grubby hands are all over the screen, you won’t be able to see what the drone sees via the camera so easily.
With the remote controller, you’re more or less upgrading Spark from it’s natural, playful elements to a more pro-level hobbyist machine. When compared to other selfie drones on the market, the option to get the remote controller marks Spark out from the rest by a long country mile.
If you’re new to drones and don’t know whether you’ll be wanting to take Spark to the next level soon, then save some money and see how you fare without a remote controller first.
In fact, for those who haven’t even bought a Spark yet, why not go for the Spark Fly More Combo? For a bit more money, you’ll get a DJI Spark drone, remote controller, two intelligent flight batteries, extra propellers and a set of propeller guards, charger with power cable, battery charging hub, micro USB cable, storage box, and handy shoulder bag.
Go on; you know you want to. Happy Sparking, Sparkers!