Image an egg. Now image an egg with a digicam on it. Now image an egg with a digicam on it that may fly. Now image an egg with a digicam on it that may fly within the rain. Now image an egg with a digicam on it that may fly within the rain and land on water. You are actually picturing the PowerEgg X.
On this evaluation, I’ll be having a look on the $1,250 PowerVision PowerEgg X Wizard equipment which is the model that comes with essentially the most equipment like a spare battery and three units of propellers, plus the waterproof housing and water-landing floats. There’s an $800 equipment with simply the fundamentals referred to as the PowerEgg X Explorer, nonetheless it is best to know that the water-landing floats should not bought individually so as to add ion later: in case you plan to make use of the drone for watersports, you need to make that call on the preliminary level of buy.
Design and Construct High quality
The PowerEgg X is sort of actually within the form of an egg when its two detachable covers are connected. The highest cowl will get opened as much as entry the battery, micro SD card slot, and connections for the drone’s rotor arms or different equipment. All of those elements get placed on earlier than use. The underside cowl is for safeguarding the digicam and stays off when the PowerEgg X is in use. Moreover, there’s a detachable collar for the digicam’s gimbal in order that it can not transfer when not in use.
Attaching the drone arms is just not tough, but it surely does take a while to pop off the duvet and slide on. Sadly, whereas all sides’s rotor arms do collapse into themselves, it’s not very compact and the 2 collapsed arms don’t fold into the drone in some neat style like seen with DJI’s merchandise. Which means that for most individuals transporting their drone round in a backpack, it’s going to be optimum for area financial savings if it’s disassembled and reassembled each time which I discover considerably tedious.
There are a number of extra points of the design which might be annoying akin to the actual fact the underside digicam cowl can’t be put in when the arms are connected. Additionally, with a purpose to take off the highest cowl of the PowerEgg X to get to the battery or reminiscence card, I must take off the underside cowl first. Lastly, if and when the propellers have to be modified, it requires a instrument to take action as they’re held in by two screws.
As talked about, the PowerEgg X takes micro SD playing cards and requires a Video Class 10 score (V10) with a purpose to assist its information charges whereas recording. The utmost storage capability that it accepts from a micro SD card is 128 GB. There’s additionally six gigabytes of inner storage onboard. Within the PowerEgg X’s required iOS and Android app referred to as Imaginative and prescient+ 2, customers can choose which storage to make use of and in addition format the micro SD playing cards.
The controller is a clean shiny white plastic that covers the entire areas that my fingers contact. I discover it to be conducive handy sweat and would have favored there to be some extra thought put into the dealing with. One other challenge I’ve is with the smartphone mount. The stiff, double-hinged design makes it extraordinarily awkward to drag out from the controller physique and the underside jaw of the telephone holder has no rubber by any means to softly come into contact with my telephone.
On the plus facet, there are ample bodily buttons for fast entry. On the frontside backside, there’s the cease button, return to dwelling button, a customizable button, the ability button, and a three-stage change for selecting the flying mode. On the prime, there are unbiased video recording and photograph taking buttons which might work no matter if the Imaginative and prescient+ 2 app is in video or photograph mode. There’s additionally a dial for controlling the lean angle of the digicam.
I discovered it helpful to have necessary controls just like the cease button at my fingertips as a result of there are occasions after I’m diving within the menus mid-flight to vary some settings round. Having the ability to change from recording video to snapping photographs through the use of the suitable button can also be preferable to switching within the app.
The clear plastic waterproof housing slides on after the propeller arms are put in on the PowerEgg X. It secures down with three latches and is best to put in earlier than placing the water-landing floats on. There are two waterproof baffles on the underside that lets scorching air move out with out letting water in, and there’s additionally a big heatsink to cope with the buildup of scorching air because it can not ventilate at close to the identical capability.
On the entrance of the housing the place the digicam friends out, there’s a totally different, much less cloudy plastic used right here and it does seem to be there was some kind of try at making the plastic as optically pure as attainable on this essential space. From what I can inform from testing, it’s not any roughly hydrophobic or anti-fog than the remainder of the plastic housing, simply clearer.
The water-landing floats are about 15.5 inches (39.4 centimeters) lengthy and really feel fairly dense regardless of being light-weight foam. The attachment is sort of simple because the rotor arm’s touchdown gear slots completely into the float. After that, a hook and loop fastener connected to the float is wrapped across the arm to safe it in place.
Between the housing and the floats, the entire course of takes a few minutes to get on. That stated, the advantages of that point spent can both be deliberate — like flying within the rain — or preventative — like emergency landings over water. One draw back to the PowerEgg X in terms of water landings is that if the drone comes down fallacious, say it catches a wave and flips, will probably be unable to proper itself to fly away. So whereas the drone will most likely be okay, it nonetheless requires that you just bodily retrieve it one way or the other. You don’t essentially need to land it far off right into a lake simply because you possibly can, as you could simply find yourself having to swim on the market to choose it up.
Flight instances are inherently going to be far and wide relying on the climate circumstances and the way the plane is being flown. PowerVision claims the PowerEgg X is able to as much as half-hour of flight time, so we are able to take that as being true solely with essentially the most optimum of all circumstances. For me, I might come to anticipate round quarter-hour of flight with the total water equipment put in or 25 minutes with out earlier than I felt that I ought to land it.
I had a disappointing expertise with the PowerEgg X batteries as a result of it appeared like they drained when left saved within the drone between flights. Turned out, it’s even worse as a result of they are going to drain regardless if they’re left within the drone or left alone within the bag. One of many batteries I let sit for every week by itself and through that point it drained greater than 50% of its capability. This places extra burden on me to recollect to “prime off” earlier than heading out to shoot.
The steadiness of the PowerEgg X falls someplace between being a difficult flyer and being downright harmful. Practically each time I went out to fly, I’d run into bother from the drone. It’ll consistently drift and alter altitude whereas idling, it virtually by no means flies straight and regular, and at its worst, it can straight up attempt to launch itself into one thing like the closest tree department.
Even when it’s appearing comparatively secure, it is vitally tough to have any kind of finesse with its actions. It looks like the controller is both not responsive sufficient to the thumbsticks or it’s pushed too far and the actions are too exaggerated. I discovered it onerous to hit the center floor for a clear “cinematic” shot.
Picture High quality
The digicam makes use of a 12-megapixel 1/2.8-inch CMOS sensor that outputs a 4,000 by 3,000 pixel 4:3-ratio picture fairly than the two:3 usually seen with digital stills cameras. It’s able to taking pictures shutter speeds as little as 8 seconds to as quick as 1/8,000 seconds in JPEG and RAW codecs, relying on the taking pictures mode used. The lens is a set 27mm f/1.8 (full-frame equal).
General, the photo-taking expertise is subpar. Many instances I discovered that after urgent the shutter button with the controller it may take so long as 5 seconds or extra for the photograph to truly be taken from the drone. In flight, the drone is susceptible to drifting fairly simply which compounds the issue by its propensity to lose framing whereas I waited for a photograph to be taken.
The photographs themselves are additionally not good. It genuinely looks like I’m photographs I shot with my Blackberry Pearl telephone again in 2007. Utilizing the JPEGs is out of the query when shot with the PowerEgg X and is problematic since image modes like HDR solely output as JPEG. Changes to distinction and saturation might be made within the app, however I had no luck in getting nice outcomes.
Taking pictures stills within the RAW DNG format improves the standard barely solely by casting off the wild processing straight out of the digicam. It provides a softer picture which to me is preferable to the makes an attempt of over-sharpening fuzzy footage, however nothing is admittedly trying nice right here contemplating the cash it took to take the photographs.
Video High quality
The PowerEgg X can report 4K video as much as 60 frames per second and 1080p video as much as 120 frames per second. PowerVision claims the utmost bitrate is 75 Mbps, but the best I used to be in a position to obtain was by means of 4K 60p pushing information at 62 Mbps. Information might be saved as H.265 or H.264. In contrast to the photograph facet of issues, there are not any image settings right here to advantageous tune the look.
Very like the photograph facet, video high quality typically doesn’t look excellent. From time to time, issues can look satisfactory relying on the circumstances, but it surely’s largely not going to be definitely worth the value. The small sensor is just not forgiving with ISO or dynamic vary, and there are deeper issues with stuttering video and slowdowns.
Additional, the drone’s gimbal appears to have bother with preserving a stage horizon. It could actually lean too far a method after which earlier than I do know it it’s leaning the opposite method. Extra gimbal woes come from attempting to trace topics the place it can typically use a stepping sample that jumps up and over to catch up fairly than clean diagonal maneuvers.
Despite the fact that I used to be in a position to set the drone to report 120 frames per second in 1080p, there’s no good cause anybody ought to ever try this. The video high quality right here makes it not definitely worth the time to shoot it. After recording the clip, the PowerEgg X throws the 120 frames per second video onto a 29.97 frames per second timeline so the ensuing file is already in tremendous sluggish movement. Ultimately, this can be a 4 Mbps bitrate file, and it reveals.
Waterproof Taking pictures
Taking pictures with the waterproof housing put in means taking pictures by means of an extra piece of plastic, and that’s precisely what it seems like. Utilizing the housing blurs the picture, lowers the distinction, provides a haze, and clearly reveals the drone’s reflection. Hovering pictures with the digicam pointed straight down are off the desk because the casing is seen and the sharpness hits an all-time low.
Not the Drone You’re Trying For
I didn’t even contact on how the PowerEgg X can be utilized as a handheld camcorder, however actually at this level it hardly makes a distinction. The digicam was truthfully no enjoyable in any respect to make use of as a result of I’d exit realizing that something I captured would primarily be used on this evaluation and don’t have any worth to me thereafter. It’s robust to fly, and the waterproofing is actually a gimmick for anybody capturing photographs or movies.
In the end, I respect that the folks at PowerVision made quite a lot of effort in many alternative sides of the PowerEgg X Wizard and introduced a brand new absolutely featured challenger to the market. Having competitors will all the time profit the consumers, however on this case, it simply doesn’t stack up in any class.
Are There Options?
As of publication, there’s actually no cause to look additional than the DJI Air 2S. It’s the gold normal for anybody on the lookout for the best picture and video high quality at an fanatic value. Evaluating the value of the Air 2S Fly Extra Combo to the PowerEgg X Wizard package deal, it’s a $50 distinction. No, the Air 2S isn’t additionally a handheld digicam or a water-lander just like the PowerEgg X, however after what I’ve seen, does that even matter?
Should you nonetheless insist on utilizing PowerEgg X and also you anticipate to virtually all the time accomplish that with the waterproof housing and water-landing floats, I’d take a tough have a look at the $1,000 Swellpro Spry because it’s constructed from the bottom as much as be water pleasant. The Spry is specced to take off from water, even do little dives into the water, and its digicam is useful pointing down into the water, not like the PowerEgg X.
Ought to You Purchase It?
No. For most individuals serious about taking drone photographs and movies, I might not advocate the PowerEgg X because of its unrefined dealing with and poor picture high quality.