So you’ve got, or you're contemplating getting a DJI Phantom? We don’t blame you - we’ve got one too, and we’ll be offering drone-specific workshops in the future! Here are some accessories and tips that will make your new aerial photo and video platform more enjoyable, best recommendations from Muench Wrokshops Pro Thomas O'Brien:
Neck strap for the remote control
You can pick out any strap you like, but do get one! Neoprene camera straps are nice and Amazon has lots of straps available, here is one that is less than $10 and we like it just fine.
You will get anywhere from 15-20 min flight time per battery charge. The more you are able to fly and practice, the better you will get at flying one of these. Flight times for each battery charge will depending on how fast you fly, the altitude you are fly at and the temperature your flight times will vary. WeI would recommend having at least 3 if not 4 batteries total, and be sure they are genuine DJI batteries. Always be sure you are ordering genuine parts for your DJI. It's best to store these batteries at a partial charge (3 lights on the battery) If fully charged and stored for a month or two the battery will puff up and become unreliable.
Second battery charger and car charger
Having a second charger and a car charger will let you get back in the air faster. DJI sells a 12 car charger and a wall charger, just like the ones that come with the Phantom.
Yes, you'll need them! It's not uncommon to have a difficult landing or minor crash. The props will take the damage but won't likely be usable anymore. Get a few sets of spare props so if you have a minor crash you can get right back up in the air. There are a few different versions of the props and you should be careful to only purchase genuine DJI props. The newest props are usually labeled “thrust boosted” DJI 9450 props. You should never mix the 9450 props with the older 9445 props, they look almost identical. DJI also makes prop guards if you want more protection and extra safety. Advanced pilots will typically want to balance each prop before using, for the smoothest possible aerial video. Prop Balancer and Balancing Rod.
Fast memory card(s)
You will eventually need a larger memory card than the one that the phantom comes with, we recommend getting a 32gb Micro SD card with a minimum write speed of 50mb/sec. We recommend the Samsung 32gb Pro (no larger, the Phantom 2 Vision+ cannot read cards larger than 32gb).
You will also need some kind of a carrying case for the quadcopter and accessories. One of the nicest ones that we have seen is the soon to be released Think Tank Airport Helipak and the Think tank Phantom divider kit. For $35 you can convert any bag that you have (that is large enough) to a Phantom quadcopter backpack. This case will fit in an overhead bin and protect the Phantom 2 with all the accessories you have. If you plan on checking your Phantom as checked luggage, then get the Pelican iM2720, which will fit the backpack right inside the Pelican. Then you have the convenience of not having to lug the Pelican around when you are on location. By the way, batteries for your Phantom must always be in your carryon luggage when flying.
We hope this is helpful. Enjoy flying your drone, and most importantly, enjoy it responsibly and ethically.