This drone is as clever as it is menacing

Meet the world's first open source quadrotor

Please don’t drone on.

Hahahaha. Ha. Sigh.

This isn’t another toy drone to fill up the ever-crowded shelves at your local gadget shop. This is a Drone, capable of incredible feats of cinematography, thanks to all sorts of hi-tech goodies - all of which are packed into a sleek and menacing black shell that wouldn’t look out of place amidst military rockets and night vision goggles.

Right then. Excite me.Well for starters, the Solo is compatible with the GoPro Hero 3, 3+ and 4, the latter of which brings 4K shooting to the table, pitting it against DJI’s recently announced Phantom professional.

Not only that, but the Solo is the first drone to offer complete control of the GoPro camera’s settings during each flight, saving you from having to land the drone each time you want to tweak things like the resolution of framerate.

Thats… actually quite handy. Any other fancy tricks?

You betcha. The Solo’s most impressive skill is its camera automation, which lets you draw flight paths on your connected smartphone’s screen, or even set it to circle a subject automatically.

There’s even a dramatic selfie mode too, which starts close up to your face before zooming away, action flick-style. If you’ve ever wanted to drop to your knees and scream out in anguish while a camera pans out to a vast landscape shot, now’s your chance.

Please tell me there’s a proper controller. 

There sure is, and it’s a veritable computer all in itself, with a 1GHz processor, customisable buttons and a handy auto takeoff and flight mode. Then there’s the screen that shows off all the Solo’s vitals, along with an internal black box that’s constantly saving all flight data for future use.

It’s also got a built-in HDMI port if you want to connect the Solo’s live stream to something large than your smartphone, and a handy ohgodwheredidthattreecomefrom emergency brake button is also available for occasions where you need to stop, pronto.

Colour us impressed. How much i- 

- We’re not quite done yet. The best part about the Solo is that its creator, 3DR, has made it open source, which means that clever devs can tinker around and invent new features for it, opening up a whole world of shooting ideas that you may have never previously considered.


Almost. If you’re interested, you can pre-order the Solo for US$1000 (or US$1400 if you want a GoPro gimbal thrown in too), and it should be out in May if all goes well.

[via Wired]