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Many people ask us what drone does Caset Neistat use, so we decided to write an article detailing his drone and what makes it so special.
Casey Neistat is famous for his YouTube vlogs covering his daily life in New York City and travels around the world. Casey Neistat uses a drone to capture many of his videos and has broken or damaged his drones many times from his heavy use. Due to this Casey has went through many drones from earlier DJI Phantom and Parrot drones to the drone that he uses today.
Today Casey Neistat currently uses several drones, the DJI Phantom 4, the DJI Mavic, and the GoPro Karma with the last two drones being his most recent additions. The manufacturer DJI is based in Shenzhen, China and is the largest manufacturer of drones worldwide with an estimated market share of around 70%. The DJI Mavic is the latest drone in DJI’s lineup, having been released in September 2016. Meanwhile, the GoPro Karma is GoPro’s first drone and is designed to be used exclusively with the Hero 4 and Hero 5 GoPro cameras.
The DJI Mavic features many leading features that put it ahead of the competition and make it the best drone on the market for your money at the moment. For many years drones were not very intelligent and were best piloted by someone who either had experience with model aircraft or some knowledge of flight.
The DJI Mavic changes this completely. It is one of the first major consumer drones to offer obstacle avoidance technology after the DJI Phantom 4. This means that when flying your drone in congested areas or around trees and obstacles you will not accidentally fly the drone into a building or tree and end up destroying your drone and entire investment in it. Casey Neistat undoubtedly appreciates this advance in technology and this is likely why he touts the DJI Mavic and DJI Phantom 4 so much.
Flying around New York City is not easy with a drone and with the DJI Phantom 4 and DJI Mavic Casey Neistat can be much more certain he will not accidentally fly into a tree and in turn have his drone fall on a Mercedes Benz, allowing him to focus on what he does best, creating video. Despite this, the limitations of the obstacle avoidance technology can be seen when Casey Neistat takes his drone to Los Angeles. Here, Casey is flying his drone during his lunch break while taking part in a movie being filmed there. While flying his drone Casey accidentally flies into a power line, causing the drone to fall out of the sky instantly. Despite the advances in technology, the obstacle avoidance technology still cannot detect smaller things in the sky such as a thin power line.
In addition to obstacle avoidance technology, the DJI Phantom 4 boasts a flight time of 28 minutes while the DJI Mavic has a 27 minute flight time, both much better than previous models that generally had between 15 and 20 minutes of flight time. The DJI Phantom 4 has three flight modes; intelligent navigation mode, speed/sport mode, and cinematic mode. In sport/speed mode the Phantom 4 can fly up to 44mph (72km/h).
Intelligent navigation mode allows you to program flight plans into the drone which the drone will execute while cinematic mode will allow you to capture sweeping aerial cinematic video. The DJI Phantom 4 drone that Casey uses also features a integrated gimbal along with a 4K camera that can record 4K video at 30fps or 1080p video at 120fps. The DJI Phantom 4 and DJI Mavic is controlled by a smartphone or iPad (as Casey uses) that is mounted above the controller and can fly a range of 3.1 miles or 5 kilometers without a range extender. You can find out more about the DJI Phantom 4 Drone or DJI Mavic Pro that Casey uses by clicking the link.
Upgrade To DJI Mavic & GoPro Karma
The GoPro Karma on the other hand is not used as much by Casey at the moment, however we may see him use it more as his vlogs progress. Casey has praised both the GoPro Karma and DJI Mavic but has not yet picked one as his favorite.
The GoPro Karma and DJI Mavic both fold up to be very portable which will likely make them Casey’s primary drones as we go forward since he has noted he would sacrifice image quality in order to have something more portable that he can take to many more places. The improvement is so vast that the DJI Mavic has basically identical specs to the DJI Phantom 4 while folding up to a size not much larger than an iPhone 6 Plus and also costing less.
The GoPro Karma, while also fold-able does not fold up quite as small as the DJI Mavic and is noticeably heavier. One unique feature however that the GoPro Karma has is a built in handheld gimbal which someone like Casey may appreciate since his camera, handheld gimbal, and drone are all part of the same device making transitioning between land based and air shots easier.
Despite the attractiveness of owning a drone, in one of his recent episodes Casey Neistat suggested not getting a kid a drone similar to the DJI Phantom 4. He has many reasons for this, as a drone such as the DJI Phantom 4 or DJI Mavic if not flown responsibly could cause a lot of damage, injury or even death. A drone not piloted correctly could fall on a stranger, seriously injuring them, or hit an aircraft if flown too high or near an airport. A drone falling on a highway or on top of a parked car could both cause serious damage. Luckily there are many alternatives to the DJI Phantom 4 and DJI Mavic drone that Casey uses, and many of these alternatives are much safer and geared towards younger or more inexperienced users while also allowing you to capture stunning aerial footage. You can see a list of theses Beginner Drones , or browse our Intermediate Drones.