Posts with «usa news» label

DJI's lightweight RS 3 Mini camera stabilizer is designed to be used with one hand

Where DJI's RS 3 and RS 3 Pro stabilizers were about maximum convenience and power, the company's latest is designed to reduce as much weight as possible. The new RS 3 Mini weighs in at just 1.8 pounds, but can carry cameras up to 4.4 pounds, which includes heavy mirrorless models like Canon's EOS R3 and even some cinema cameras. At the same time, it offer's DJI's latest stabilization algorithms, easy controls and more. 

DJI has tested the RS 3 Mini with cameras like the Sony A7S III with a 24-70mm f/2.8 GM lens, the Canon EOS R5 with an RF24-70mm f/2.8 STM lens or a Fuji X-H2S and XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4.0 lens. I tried it with a Panasonic GH6 and 12-60mm f/2.8-4 and a Canon EOS R6 Mark II with a 24-104mm f/4 and had no problems. "A powerful motor ensures that even when the zoom reaches the maximum focal length, the footage captured remains stable, and there is no need to repeat balancing," DJI says.

It's relatively easy to mount cameras thanks to the newly designed dual layer quick-release plate. That also allows for vertical shooting if you attach the plate to vertical arm, and there are no rotation angle limitations in that mode. As with the RS3, the sliding quick release plates make it easy to balance in just a few minutes.

It supports both wired and wireless Bluetooth shutter/record activation via the RS3 Mini's record button, with the camera ready to go as soon as it's turned on. For Sony cameras with supported power zoom lenses, you can also control the zoom using the front dial without the need for a camera control cable. It offers the usual other DJI Ronin control dials, including a joystick, M button to switch modes, a trigger, a front dial and the aforementioned record button. You can also add Ronin accessories like the Briefcase handle, fill lights or microphones.

Steve Dent/Engadget

Functions are controlled by the 1.4-inch full-color touchscreen, letting you change shooting modes, balance the gimbal motors and more. You can also do much of that with the app, or set functions like Timelapse, Track recording (move along up to 10 preset points) and Panorama. Finally, it can go up to 10 hours on a charge with the integrated battery handle and can be fully charged in as little as 2.5 hours with a 10W charger.

I had a chance to briefly try out DJI's RS 3 Mini, and my early impressions were good. I'm not much of a gimbal guy as I often work alone and don't have the need for tracking shots very often. However, this one is so light that I was able to use it a fair while without tiring out. It's also very convenient — there was no need to rebalance even if I zoomed out or changed my camera's configuration. And I was able to shoot most of my footage one-handed, as DJI promises. The results were great — it produced very smooth footage, both in the horizontal and vertical configurations. 

Steve Dent/Engadget

The RS 3 Mini is also a relative bargain compared to the $550 RS 3 Pro. It's available for purchase today at authorized retailers or DJI's Store for $369 (339 GBP/ 389 EUR). If you're concerned about knocking it into a wall, DJI's Care Refresh insurance is now available for the RS 3 Mini, as well. 

DJI's Mavic 3 Classic drone drops a lens in return for a lower price

DJI's Mavic 3 is a useful cinematic drone, but its steep price ($1,899 as we write this) can be off-putting compared to the $1,449 of the older Mavic 2 Pro. The company thinks it has a simple solution, though: offer a trimmed-back version. DJI has introduced the Mavic 3 Classic, a new variant that drops the telephoto lens in exchange for a better $1,469 starting price (more on that later).

The Classic otherwise includes the features that might draw you to the Mavic 3 in the first place. The centerpiece remains a 20-megapixel, 24mm-equivalent Hasselblad camera that can shoot 5.1K video up to 50 frames per second (4K at 60FPS) and capture 12-bit RAW photos. You can likewise expect a healthy 46-minute peak flight time, a range of up to 9.3 miles and an O3+ transmission system that can send 1080p 60FPS video to your remote. You're still asked to fly within line of sight, but an AirSense ADS-B receiver can warn you of nearby aircraft if you operate at higher altitudes.

This still isn't a trivial expense. The base price is for the drone only, and doesn't include a remote or charger. It's meant for upgrading DJI users who have the necessary gear. Everyone else will have to pay at least $1,599 for the standard kit, which includes the charger and the basic RC-N1 remote. Spend $1,749 and you'll get the display-equipped DJI RC remote. And if you need accessories, the $649 Fly More add-on includes two batteries, a charging hub, a car charger, three pairs of quiet propellers and a convertible carrying bag.

The Mavic 3 Classic clearly isn't meant for newcomers, or even many enthusiasts. You'll want to look at the $679 Mini 3 Pro or $999 Air 2S if you're on a tighter budget. However, it might represent a solid value if you care about drone camera quality but don't need long-zoom shots to create your next magnum opus.

DJI unveils Avata, a cinewhoop-style FPV drone

DJI has launched a new cinematic drone called Avata, which was made to work with the new DJI Goggles 2 video headset. While it's in the same category as the brand's previous first-person view (FPV) cinematic model, it takes on a more usual "cinewhoop" form factor with prop guards protecting its quad propellers. Since it's a cinewhoop, the Avata was designed to have the speed and agility of racers but with the stabilization technology needed to be able to capture smooth and vivid footage. 

It can hover, accelerate like a racer and zoom in and out of tight spaces while shooting videos, and its battery can last for up to 18 minutes before needing a recharge. The Avata is equipped with a stabilized camera that has a 1/1.7-inch CMOS sensor with 48 million effective pixels, an f/2.8 aperture and an ultra wide-angle lens. That camera is capable of shooting 4K videos in 60fps and 2.7K videos in 50, 60, 100 or 120 fps. And users can shoot quite a bit of footage before worrying about space, since it has 20GB of internal storage.

While it can be controlled using the existing DJI FPV Remote Controller 2 and the DJI FPV Goggles V2, it was designed to be used with the company's newer models. DJI Goggles 2 is the brand's next-gen video headset with a clearer micro-OLED screen than its predecessor and an adjustable diopter, so that people who wear glasses wouldn't need them while using the device. It can wirelessly stream the drone's live footage from the user's phone or computer for an immersive first-person viewing experience. Meanwhile, the DJI Motion Controller gives pilots the power to perform complex flight maneuvers with one hand. 

The DJI Avata is available starting today from the company's website and various retailers. On its own, the drone costs €579, £499 or $629, while a set with the DJI Goggles 2 and a DJI Motion Controller costs €1,429, £1,229 or $1,388.


The US Government is inspecting Amazon warehouses over 'potential worker safety hazards'

Amazon warehouses in New York City and elsewhere are being investigated by federal prosecutors and the US Department of Labor over unsafe workplace conditions, ABC News has reported. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) conducted inspections "related, among other things, to Amazon's required pace of work for its warehouse employees," a spokesperson said in a statement. 

On top of probing potential safety hazards, the investigators were also looking into "possible fraudulent conduct designed to hide injuries from OSHA and others," the agency added. It said that it opened the inspections based on referrals from the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York regarding allegations of safety and health violations. It's also probing Amazon workplaces outside of Illinois and Florida. 

Over the last several years, Amazon has faced a number of complaints and probes over workplace safety, particularly around demanding tasks. Earlier this year, Washington state's Department of Labor cited and fined the company for "strenuous work at an unsafe pace" in Kent. Last year, the company issued a rare apology for tweets attacking criticism of working conditions, specifically that drivers and other workers were forced to pee in bottles to achieve objectives. 

Following the collapse of a warehouse in Edwardsville, Illinois during a hurricane, the company was criticized by members of congress and the senate for "wholly inadequate" warehouse safety. In April, workers at New York's Staten Island warehouse voted to form the company's first US union. 

DJI's Mini 2 bundle with extra batteries is 20 percent off for Prime Day

If drone photography is something you’ve always wanted to try, one of Amazon’s Prime Day deals may be your ticket into the hobby. The retailer has discounted the DJI Mini 2 Fly More Combo to $479, down from $599. The bundle comes with almost everything you need to get the most out of DJI’s entry-level drone, including two spare batteries, a charging hub and a carrying case for the aircraft. At $479, you’re effectively paying $60 more than it would cost to buy the standard $419 Mini 2 kit on its own.

Buy DJI Mini 2 Fly More Combo at Amazon - $479

While Engadget hasn’t had a chance to review the Mini 2, it’s widely considered one of the best beginner drones you can buy. With DJI’s OcuSync 2.0 transmission system and a 2,250mAh battery, the Mini 2 features a range of up to 10 kilometers and a flight time of 31 minutes in ideal conditions. It can also capture smooth 4K video at 30 frames per second, thanks to a 12-megapixel sensor. Best of all, the entire drone weighs just under 250 grams, meaning you don’t have to register it with the Federal Aviation Administration – though you’re still obligated to fly it safely.

The one feature you won’t find on the Mini 2 is obstacle avoidance, but that’s something you should expect with a drone in the $450 price range. You must spend significantly more on an aircraft like the DJI Mini 3 Pro to find that functionality. At that point, you’re looking at a more premium drone.

Get the latest Amazon Prime Day offers by following @EngadgetDeals on Twitter and subscribing to the Engadget Deals newsletter.

DJI's RS3 mirrorless camera stabilizer unlocks automatically and is easier to balance

DJI has significantly expanded its gimbal lineup with the RS3 and RS3 Pro models designed for mirrorless and cinema cameras. It also launched some other interesting cinema products derived from the innovative Ronin 4D camera gimbal, including a LiDAR focusing system and "DJI Transmission" for remote monitoring and control of compatible gimbals. Finally, it announced that it has joined Panasonic and Leica's full-frame L-Mount alliance and unveiled a compensation for removing ProRes RAW from the Ronin 4D. 

DJI's flagship mainstream gimbal is now the DJI RS3. The key new feature over the RSC 2 is an automatic locking system that releases and unfolds the gimbal when it's turned on, then folds and locks it when turned off. That avoids the usual dance of steadying the camera by hand when turning off the gimbal, then manually locking three separate axes. 


Tapping the power button sends it into sleep mode, "which makes powering on the device, stowing it away and relocating much faster," DJI notes. It also uses quick-release plates for "position memory" so in theory, you only have to balance your camera once. 

It weighs in at just under 2.8 pounds but can handle a payload of 6.6 pounds, enough to support most mainstream mirrorless cameras. The 3rd-generation stabilization algorithm offers a 20 percent improvement over the RSC 2, so it's easier to shoot low angles, running or filming from a moving vehicle. For longer lenses up to 100mm, SuperSmooth provides further electronic stabilization. 


It has a Bluetooth shutter button that supports automatic connection without the need for a camera control cable, along with a 1.8-inch full-color OLED display with 80 percent more surface area than the RSC 2. That screen allows a full gimbal setup in most scenarios without connecting the mobile app, while the redesigned UI and control layout makes it easier to operate. Part of that is a new physical gimbal mode switch that lets you select pan follow, pan and tilt follow and FPV modes instantly. 

Finally, a new battery grip provides up to 12 hours of battery life and can be easily changed out via a quick release system. It supports PD fast charging at 18 watts and can be charged independently or during use for non-stop operation. The DJI RS3 gimbal is now available from authorized retailers and at DJI's store priced at $550 for the standalone gimbal and $720 for the DJI RS3 Combo that adds a briefcase handle, focus motor, second control cable and a carrying case. 


Next up is the RS3 Pro, another technological tour de force from DJI. It's built from carbon fiber so it weighs just 3.3 pounds, but can handle up to 10 pounds of payload — enough for pro cinema cameras like the Sony FX6, Canon C70 and RED Komodo. Like the RS3, it also has the new automated axis lock system, Bluetooth shutter button, 1.8-inch OLED touchscreen and gimbal mode switch. 

The RS3 Pro borrows a key feature from the Ronin 4D, the optional DJI LiDAR Range Finder. It projects 43,200 ranging points within a 46 foot indoor area, and powers a next-generation focus motor with extra torque and one-step mounting. That allows for "autofocus on manual lenses with no need for repetitive calibration," according to DJI. 


The LiDAR Range Finder has the same chip as the one on the Ronin 4D and a built-in 30mm camera, giving similar ActiveTrack Pro focus and gimbal tracking capabilities. That will allow pro cameras to maintain steady, clear shots in "even more dynamic scenarios," DJI says. The RS3 Pro is now available starting at $870 or $1,100 in a combo with an extended quick release plate, phone holder, focus motor and kit, Ronin Image Transmitter and more. The LiDAR Range Finder will be sold separately priced at $660. 

DJI has also announced that it's selling the DJI Transmission remote control/monitor seen with the Ronin 4D as a separate device. It uses DJI's O3 tech used on drones like the Mavic 3, transmitting video in 1080p/60fps at a ground range of up to 20,000 feet with end-to-end ultra-low latency. Monitoring is done via the 7-inch, 1,500-nit High-Bright Remote Monitor. 


With compatible devices like the RS3 Pro, you can not only monitor and record video output but also control the gimbal, camera recording and more, using the DJI Master Wheel and Force Pro. It also adds a DFS band that allows for up to 23 channels, letting large crews work simultaneously with ten or more transmitters. The DJI Transmission arrives this September for $2,500 or you can purchase the High-Bright Monitor separately for $1,700. 

Finally, DJI announced that it's now a member of the L-Mount Alliance and has partnered with Leica on the Zenmuse X9 L-Mount unit that's compatible with Leica, Panasonic and Sigma L-Mount lenses. And for any Ronin 4D buyers disappointed with the removal of Apple ProRes RAW support, DJI announced that it will support Apple ProRes 4444 XQ, the highest-quality ProRes codec short of ProRes RAW. 

DJI suspends sales in Russia and Ukraine to prevent its drones from being used in combat

DJI has temporarily suspended sales and all business activities in both Russia and Ukraine "in light of current hostilities," the dronemaker has announced. As Reuters reports, that makes it the first major Chinese company to halt sales in Russia after the country started its invasion of Ukraine in February. Unlike their peers in the West, most Chinese companies have chosen to continue their operations in the country. 

A DJI spokesperson told Reuters that it's not making a statement about any country by pulling out of Russia and Ukraine — it's making a statement about its principles. "DJI abhors any use of our drones to cause harm, and we are temporarily suspending sales in these countries in order to help ensure no-one uses our drones in combat," the spokesperson told the news organization. 

This move comes a month after Ukrainian politician Mykhailo Fedorov called on DJI to stop selling its products in Russia. The country's Minister of Digital Transformation posted an open letter for the dronemaker on Twitter that says Russia is using DJI products to navigate its missiles "to kill civilians." It also says Russia is using an extended version of DJI's AeroScope drone detection platform to gather flight information. 

In addition, MediaMarkt, a German chain of stores selling electronics across Europe, removed DJI's products from its shelves after receiving "information from various sources that the Russian army is using products and data from the Chinese drone supplier DJI for military activities in Ukraine." DJI denied that it was actively supporting the Russian military not just by providing hardware, but also by providing flight data and called the accusations "utterly false." 

In 21 days of the war, russian troops has already killed 100 Ukrainian children. they are using DJI products in order to navigate their missile. @DJIGlobal are you sure you want to be a partner in these murders? Block your products that are helping russia to kill the Ukrainians!

— Mykhailo Fedorov (@FedorovMykhailo) March 16, 2022

A few days ago, DJI issued a statement to condemn the use of its products to cause harm. It said it does not market or sell its products for military use and that its distributors have all agreed not to sell products to customers who'll clearly use them for military purposes. "We will never accept any use of our products to cause harm, and we will continue striving to improve the world with our work," the company wrote.

DJI's latest work drone can fly autonomously in harsh weather

You might soon see DJI's drones flying in particularly rough conditions. DJI has unveiled the Matrice 30 (aka M30), an enterprise-class drone with IP55 dust and water resistance that lets it fly in heavy rain, strong wind and even icy situations. It can fly to altitudes as high as 22,965ft above sea level (with the right propellers) and survive temperatures between -4F and 122F, too. Even the included RC Plus controller can handle a downpour thanks to an IP54-rated body.

The M30 can also fold with a button press. The self-heating battery lasts for 41 minutes, but the charging case can bring the drone from 20 percent to 90 percent in 30 minutes.

DJI's robotic flier will also require little human intervention in some cases. A variant of the M30 will support an upcoming DJI Dock that, like other drone stations, lets the aircraft fly programmed routes and autonomously land to recharge between rounds. You can remotely monitor work sites from the air in areas where beyond-line-of-sight drone use is allowed, in other words. The dock is dust- and water-resistant, includes its own weather station and has both a battery backup and 4G dongle support to keep it running.

DJI is taking orders for the M30 today through a contact form. The dock will be available sometime in the fourth quarter of 2022, and M300 RTK drone owners can also buy a new Zenmuse H20N sensor with "starlight-grade" night vision. There's no mention of pricing, but it's safe to assume individual drone enthusiasts aren't the target market. This is for companies that have the need and budget to fly drones on a regular basis.

US puts drone maker DJI and seven other Chinese companies on investment blocklist

The US government will place eight Chinese companies including drone manufacturer DJI on an investment blocklist for alleged involvement in surveillance of Uyghur Muslims, the Financial Times has reported. The firms will reportedly be put on the Treasure department's "Chinese military-industrial complex companies" list on Tuesday, meaning US citizens will be barred from making any investments. 

DJI is already on the Department of Commerce's Entity list, meaning American companies can't sell it components unless they have a license. At the time, the government said it was among companies that "enabled wide-scale human rights abuses within China through abusive genetic collection and analysis or high-technology surveillance." However, unlike products from Huawei and others, DJI drones are have not been banned for sale in the US. 

The latest moves are part of an effort by US President Joe Biden to sanction China for repression of Uyghurs and other ethnic minorities in the Xinjiang region. Others that will be added to the list include cloud computing firms and facial recognition companies that operate in Xinjiang.

Yesterday, the US House and Senate passed a bill that would ban imports from Xinjiang, unless companies could prove they were not made using forced labor. It's set for a vote in the upper chamber of Congress prior to a holiday recess.

Xiaomi was placed on the same investment blocklist early in 2021. However, it fought the decision, saying that none of its principals were connected with the Chinese military and that a lack of US investment would lead to "immediate and irreparable harm." In May, the government agreed to lift the ban. 

In 2020, DJI commanded a massive 77 percent of the consumer drone market. Over the last two months, it has released a pair of key products, the large-sensor Mavic 3 drone and full-frame Ronin 4D cinema camera with a built-in gimbal and LiDAR focus system. A year ago, DJI said it had "done nothing to justify being placed on the Entity list," and that "customers in America can continue to buy and use DJI products normally."

DJI's Mavic 3 packs dual Four Thirds and telephoto cameras

DJI is best known for drones, but it's possibly the most inventive camera company right now. After unveiling the outrageous full-frame Ronin 4K camera/gimbal last month, it has now launched the $2,200 Mavic 3 drone with not just one, but two innovative camera systems.

As rumored, there are two models in the Mavic 3 family, the Standard and Cine models, along with a "Fly More" combo that bundles more accessories. The main difference is that the Mavic 3 Cine has a built-in 1TB SSD and supports Apple ProRes 422 HQ video recording — highly desirable for professional film productions. The latter is also considerably more expensive, as I'll discuss shortly. 

The Mavic 3's main 24mm (35mm-equivalent) f/2.8 - f/11 Hasselblad-branded camera has a Four Thirds sensor that's considerably larger than the 1-inch sensor on the current Air 2S model. And yet, the camera module doesn't look much bigger and the Mavic 3 weighs slightly less than the Mavic 2 (895g compared to 907g). 

Steve Dent/Engadget

Four Thirds is the same size as the Micro Four Thirds sensor on Panasonic's BGH1 box camera, for example, so it should allow for more cinematic video and photos. The variable aperture, along with optional ND filters, will make it easier to shoot in a variety of lighting conditions. It also comes with a new autofocus system called Vision Detection that supposedly optimizes focusing speeds.

With the main camera, it now shoots 5.1K video at 50fps, or 4K at 120 fps — up from 5.4K 30fps and 4K/60p video on the Air 2S. DJI claims a native dynamic range of 12.8 stops, thanks to the 10-bit D-Log color profile. As for still images, it can shoot 20-megapixel photos in 12-bit RAW.

If you need to get in much, much closer, DJI has squeezed in a second camera directly above the main camera. This one has a half-inch 12-megapixel sensor and 162mm tele lens (35mm equivalent), which is around a 4X zoom, or claimed 28X hybrid zoom. The aperture is fixed at f/4.4, and it offers strictly automatic, rather than manual exposure control. It can capture 4K video at up to 30 fps. 

Steve Dent/Engadget

DJI has confirmed that the Mavic 3 will have up to 46 minutes of autonomy in ideal conditions (40 minutes of hover), as leaks had suggested. That's up pretty massively from the Mavic 2 Pro or Air 2S, both of which offer 31 minutes of flying time. It can also fly a bit faster too, at 47 MPH compared to 45 MPH. Those capabilities were enabled by a higher-capacity battery, more energy-efficient motors/propellers and a more streamlined shape on the Mavic 3's arms, body and gimbal. "Wind tunnel testing shows Mavic 3 produces 35 percent less drag than previous generations," DJI wrote. 

The Mavic 3 also offers enhanced flight safety thanks to its updated APAS 5.0 system that uses inputs from six fish-eye vision sensor and two wide-angle sensors to detect and avoid obstacles. Meanwhile, the ActiveTrack 5.0 system has new options for tracking subjects no matter which way they're moving, and it can even continue to track a subject if it moves out of frame and pick it back up when it reappears. All of that allows "more fluid and diverse drone and camera movement," DJI said. 

It also comes with an improved RTH (Return to Home) system by automatically calculating the shortest, safest and most energy-efficient route to land back at its home point. It can take into account wind speed and power required to calculate the path, giving users a bit more flying time before triggering the RTH action. Another updated feature is O3+ signal loss prevention that allows for a maximum control range of 15 km. Mavic 3 is also DJI's first drone with a 1080p 60fps transmission speed on the live feed, meaning "the camera view is displayed at a resolution close to what the camera actually records," DJI notes. 

Steve Dent/Engadget

Along with the drone, DJI introduced a number of new accessories, including a new DJI RC Pro smart controller, a 65W Portable Charger that's compatible with notebooks and smartphones and allows for fast charging (around 96 minutes), a wide-angle lens and two sets of ND filters (ND4/8/16/32 and ND64/128/256/512) that allow for shooting in bright sunlight. It also introduced a carrying bag that converts into a backpack that can fit the drone, a laptop and other accessories. 

Engadget received the drone just yesterday, so we haven't had a chance to fly it yet — stay tuned for a full review. However, I'm impressed so far by the design and small details like the storage cover that protects the camera, gimbals and propeller (below). It's also clear that DJI has put a lot of thought into the new charging system and batteries that should make operation more practical. Even the carrying bag/backpack is well conceived, with pockets and sleeves for the batteries, ND filters and more.

Steve Dent/Engadget

As you may have noticed, the drawback with the Mavic 3 is the relatively high price. Rather than $1,600 as was rumored, the Mavic 3 starts at $2,200 for the Standard model, which includes the Mavic 3 drone, storage cover, one battery and charger, the RC-N1 remote control "and other essential items." The $3,000 Mavic 3 Fly More Combo adds two extra batteries (three total), a three-battery charging hub, the ND4/8/16/32 filter set and the fancy bag/backpack.

Finally, the $5,000 Mavic 3 Cine Premium Combo gives you the aforementioned 1TB SSD and Apple ProRes 422 HQ recording (arriving in January 2022). It adds a few more accessories to the Fly More Combo as well, including the RC Pro remote, ND64/128/256/512 filters and the DJI 10Gbps data cable. Five grand is obviously lot of money, but it's aimed more at pro film producers. All three drones are now available to order from DJI's website and authorized partners.