The Sony Airpeak S1 drone is finally looking ready for release. Pre-orders have been open with online retailers in Japan since September 17. At the same time, B&H Photo Video has got its Airpeak S1 page up, indicating that the drone could hit the US market also soon.
The Airpeak is a high-end drone intended for professional aerial photography and cinematography. It is expected to carry a price tag upward of $9,000 when it hits the market. And this, by the way, is what you pay for the airframe, two pairs of propellers, a remote controller, two batteries, and a battery charger.
The gimbal, camera, and lens, all need to be purchased separately.
While it’s quite evident the drone is aimed only at those with deep pockets, Sony has a few key selling points up its sleeve that could make the Airpeak S1 attractive to professional filmmakers.
Sony says the S1 is the world’s smallest drone that integrates seamlessly with the company’s full-size Alpha cameras. This includes the Alpha 7S series and FX3 for high descriptive capability with suppressed noise, the Alpha 7R series for ultra-high-definition, and the Alpha 9 series and others for distortion-free images. Also compatible is the innovative Alpha 1, which can shoot in 8K.
Equipped with an advanced remote controller, the “made in Japan” drone supports obstacle detection, automatic flight control, as well as cloud management of the aircraft and flight information.
Moreover, the Airpeak S1 drone can provide wind resistance in strong wind speeds up to 44.7 mph (20m/s), which can be a real advantage when you have to fly in high winds.
And then there’s a web application called “Airpeak Base,” which would allow the drone pilot to manage the equipment, create flight plans, and manage flight logs.
Operators can set the position (latitude, longitude, and altitude) and speed of the drone along the timeline. They can also specify the orientation of the gimbal and the timing of video or still image shooting. And then, the app would create advanced flight plans through which the pilot can automatically fly the Airpeak S1 along the same course repeatedly as if the drone were on rails installed in the air.
Dual operation mode is supported. And so, one user can operate the drone, while another can operate the gimbal and camera simultaneously – all while checking the same image, even in complicated scenes.
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