There’s a thousand ways to get a camera airborne these days but as the camera weight increases so do the hardware requirements and equally, costs. Sure, you can drop $10,000 (after batteries, tax, shipping, FPV, etc) on a FreeFly Alta and have the ultimate setup (keep in mind it’s another $4,000 for a MOVI m5). But if you’re looking for something on a budget I’m offering up the most affordable way to get extremely professional aerial footage immediately, especially if you already have a MOVI or other lightweight gimbal.
I spent more than six months ordering parts from around the world (thanks DHL), dismantling and rebuilding the DJI s1000 UAV with numerous improvements (documented on my blog).
If you’re interested in getting a Sony a7s, GH4, Canon 5D Mark III or other DSLR airborne quickly – email me!
An overview of modifications to the s1000:
- replaced the central stiffening board with an 8-point version (the stock connects only to 4 of the 8 booms).
- Added the Kopterworx s1000 MOVI adapter
- Replaced the landing legs with 500mm carbon fiber tubs to allow the needed vertical height to fit the MOVI suspended below the s1000
- Added the DJI AVL-58 fpv using a Kopterworx HDMI to AV adapter to transmit the main camera image to the ground
- Also purchased the IOSD mini which would show telemetry info but the data never did connect properly. I never troubleshot this issue though as the Alta arrived about that time.
I have two 5000mAh PULSE batteries and one additional 16,000 mAh PULSE. With the larger battery I could get around 10 minutes flight time with the MOVI and a SONY a7s camera.