Join Jim Heid for an in-depth discussion in this video Flight modes: Cinematic, Tripod, and Tapfly, part of DJI Mavic Pro: Tips, Tricks, & Techniques.
- In the next few videos, we'll explore the intelligent flight modes in the DJI Go App. These are great features that work together with all the positioning smarts of the Maveric Pro to enable the drone to fly semi autonomously and make it easier to get complex video shots and easier to fly in general. They aren't substitutes for good flying skills, but they are really useful. Before we start, two important things. To cancel any of the intelligent flight modes, just hold down the pause button on the remote controller for a second or so.
When you do, the drone returns to normal flight mode and hovers. This is a great way to quickly regain control should you see the drone doing something you didn't expect. You can then choose the intelligent flight mode you want by tapping the mode icon and then choosing from the list. Let's start out with the cinematic option. One of the things that can make the difference between great drone video and meh drone video is the smoothness of the drone's motion. When motion stops or starts, you want that to be a gradual process not something sudden and jarring.
It's a difference between fading out a song and just hitting the stop button. Cinematic mode puts the drone in fade mode. The drone responds differently to your stick inputs. In essence, fading movements in and out instead of applying them abruptly. This can make it easier to get that ease in and ease out look in the video that you shoot. But there's a big caution here, when you activate cinematic mode the drone's stopping distance increases pretty dramatically. It makes sense when you think about how the feature works. It designed to fade out of stick movement instead of abruptly applying it.
What this means though is that it's easier to hit something. It's all the more critical to be aware of what's around the drone when you're using this mode. By the way, cinematic mode affects the drone's horizontal movement and it affects yaw, the drone's rotation is slower in cinematic mode. But this mode does not affect altitude changes. It doesn't make the drone fade into a climb or descent. You can fine tune the cinematic mode settings in DJI Go. Go into the main controller settings, tap the little drone, then tap advanced settings.
To make cinematic mode less gentle, in other words faster easing out and faster easing in, increase the cinematic mode gain setting. Similarly, if gentle rotation isn't that important to you, you can increase the yaw sensitivity setting. Let's move on to a cousin of cinematic mode, tripod mode. Cinematic mode make some stick movements more gradual. Tripod mode just slows everything down. In tripod mode, the drone's maximum speed is only a couple of miles a hour and the drone responds to stick movements less aggressively.
Tripod mode is another very useful tool for getting smoother video. It doesn't provide that gradual ease in and ease out of cinematic mode, but because the sticks respond with less vigor it's easier to accomplish that yourself. But keep in mind, tripod mode will never get you any faster than a couple of miles a hour unlike cinematic mode. The next mode, tapfly, is one of my favorites. Tapfly is cruise control, when you use it the drone flies on it's own in a particular direction without you having to push the right hand stick forward.
While it's doing that, you can add additional stick inputs. For example, doing a slow yaw so the drone rotates as it moves forward or doing a fine tilt maneuver with the gimbal or even both. Let's face it, some drone shooting tasks require a third hand. Until evolution provides one, tapfly is the next best thing. Let's go out on location and check it out. Okay, so we're airborne here, I'm going to activate tapfly. And we have this horizontal line here that represents our horizon.
Now, if I tap the location where I want the drone to fly and then hit go, the drone goes there. This green arrow indicates our flight path and you can see a little message underneath that, that hotspot that I tapped on, saying that the drone is ascending. That's because I tapped above that horizontal line. If I tap below the horizontal line, the drone descends. Will it descend all the way into the ground? Well, probably not; the collision avoidance system is supposed to protect you from that but again this is one of those cases where you want keep an eye on what the drone is doing and be ready to abort which you can do by hitting the pause button or the X in DJI Go.
Let's ascend again here and you may notice this little H that's on that horizon line. The little H is telling us where we are in relation to the home point. If the home point is to the left of the drone's heading, the H appears on the left hand side of the horizon line. As we get more aligned with the home point, the H moves towards the center and as our heading is to the right of the home point, then the H moves to the right. So, I'm going to turn off cruise control by tapping the X on the screen; the other way you can cancel on intelligent flight mode.
One more important caution, if you leave tapfly on your drone will continue to fly until it loses contact with the remote controller requiring a return to home operation. To avoid this, you can use the set maximum distance option that we saw in a previous video or just keep an eye on the drone and don't let it get to far when it's in cruise control.
- Safety checks
- App settings
- Startup, takeoff, and landing
- In-flight data displays
- DJI GO tips
- Flight modes
- Streaming live
- Adjusting focus
- Exposure and white balance
- Still photography and panoramas
- Shutter speed
- Aerial video
- Using the gimbal
- Using the remote controller