So many drones now come with 4k resolution cameras that it’s almost a set-back if a drone doesn’t come with one. For anyone who isn’t super camera-savvy, 4k means that there is a 4,000 pixel count in horizontal resolution. If you aren’t super camera-savvy, that still probably doesn’t clear anything up, but suffice it to say that 4k is the highest resolution you can get in a camera. With higher resolution comes more filming capabilities.
The picture you get with 4k will have more clarity, depth, and texture; the definition in 4k is incredible. This high resolution allows you to do a variety of edits of any shot. You can convert down from 4k to 2k and have a better quality than pictures taken only in the 2k Full-HD. You can also crop video to create zoom shots. And, if you want to enlarge an image, the 4k resolution will prevent a lot of degrading. Another capability of using 4k is that you can film a hard-to-get shot (say a dancer in mid-pirouette) and crop any image you want from that video to capture the perfect pose.
For drones using 4k, there are millions of amazing shots possible. Just think about capturing a shot of a fish leaping out of a river to catch a bug. Or maybe catching a group of parasailers just as they take to the air. With the reach of a drone and the quality of a 4k camera, no shot is outside of your capabilities.
There are only a few drones out there that are already equipped with their own 4k camera, like the DJI Inspire 1 and Phantom 3 models. For cameras that don’t come with a camera but do include a mount, you can get a 4k camera from GoPro. The newest GoPro camera out that is compatible with drones and is the only 4k camera available is the GoPro Hero 4 Black. Another 4k camera you can attach is the Sony 4k Action Cam.
Beyond its 4k capabilities, the Hero 4 Black also comes with many other features that will make filming easier. First of all, you can control your camera from up to 600 feet away, giving you a far reach. You can also view slow-motion playback. You can take 12 MP burst shots at 30 frames a second or take time-lapse shots. Not to mention live photo and video streaming to your mobile device through built-in Wi-Fi, and even more.
The Sony 4k Action Cam comes at the same price as the Hero 4 at $499. It comes with a lot of the same features, such as wifi, image stabilization, and even waterproof casing.
Whether you get a DJI drone that comes with a 4k camera or you attach a GoPro Hero 4 Black or a Sony 4k Action Cam, you are going to love aerial filming in 4k. And, from a commercial standpoint, 4k will soon be the standard, and no one will want any resolution poorer than this. It is beneficial for any photographer to invest in 4k now so that they will be prepared for future demand.
- Ashley Smith