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Taking a $250,000 Drone Flight With The Phantom Flex4K

By Hanssie on April 4th 2015

Shooting 4K at 100o FPS, the Phantom Flex4K is undeniably a powerful piece of equipment for filmmakers. Costing around the price of my first house, it comes in at around 14lbs sans lens and is too heavy to fly on a UAV. That didn’t stop Brain Farm, a team of videographers who teamed up with drone maker Aerigon, for a little (and very, very expensive) experiment.

Drone footage is usually captured with a GoPro and while GoPros are fairly affordable, when mishaps occur, which they do quite often, it can be painful on the pocketbook. The following video would be a documentation, according to the team, of “the most technologically advanced drone flight of all time…or a quarter million dollar crash.” Curt Morgan, Brain Farm’s CEO, states that he has dreamt for years of putting the Phantom in the air on a drone, but drones are not built to handle that much weight. After hacking the Aerigon, who makes UAV’s that are capable of carrying heavier cameras – just not quite as heavy as the Phantom – to be able to handle the additional weight, the estimated $250,000 rig was sent into the air with bated breath and fingers crossed that it didn’t come crashing down on top of them.

Phantom Flex 4k drone


Capturing footage of flying mud and spinning tires, the hacked drone performed well and survived its inaugural flight. Now that the team at Brain Farm has shown that it is possible, it will be exciting to see what filmmakers do with the ability to get footage that is produced from a very high-quality camera and a drone.

Watch the world’s first aerial footage shot from a drone with a Phantom Flex4k below:

Could the footage have been shot from a crane? Of course. Would it have been as cool? Absolutely not.

See more behind the scenes photos on Brain Farm’s website here.

[Via Engadget]

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Hanssie is a Southern California-based writer and sometimes portrait and wedding photographer. In her free time, she homeschools, works out, rescues dogs and works in marketing for SLR Lounge. She also blogs about her adventures and about fitness when she’s not sick of writing so much. Check out her work and her blog at Follow her on Instagram

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Blake Weber

    Flying a Phantom on a badass drone: cool. BTS video: cool. A truck driving through puddles as the subject matter for the first video: kinda lame.

    “Five years I’ve been dreaming of this.” Really? You couldn’t have found something a little more interesting to actually shoot with your 1/4 million dollar setup?

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    • J. Dennis Thomas

      “you couldn’t have found something a little more interesting to actually shoot with your 1/4 million dollar setup?”

      I guess he blew the budget?

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  2. Graham Curran

    It still falls short of what military drones can do.

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  3. robert garfinkle

    Hanssie – is it me, or is this not the best YouTube IQ I’ve ever seen – typically, YouTube just blows / sub-par video wise – I actually think this is better than any Vimeo I have seen, and would go far as to say, equal to progressive videos I have stored locally (blu-ray like etc…)

    As far as what they’ve done – love it, love it love it… The fact that this is crisp and clean only adds too it – did not lend as a distraction to the content itself…

    guys n gals alike, watch this thing full screen – it’s awesome – IQ is amazing…

    have a good easter / passover / good weekend to all…

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