Powervision PowerEgg X drone

The PowerEgg X drone is incredibly versatile – it can fly in heavy rain and even land on water. It does a lot, but does it do anything awesome?

OUR VERDICT


The ambition of the PowerEgg X drone is extraordinary, and must be saluted. It beats much pricier competitors when it involves weatherproofing and is fast and stable within the air even in difficult conditions. Switching from one mode to subsequent are often a touch fiddly, and therefore the software does have a couple of rough edges, but overall this is often an excellent drone which packs tons within the shell.

PROSCONS
Can land on water
Drone / Camcorder modes
Can fly in rain
AI Tracking
App could be better
Noisy fan in camcorder mode
Image sensor small at 1/2.8”

If you’ve never encountered the first PowerEgg, don’t worry; this review can’t be about “what an excellent intensify this is” because the Powervision PowerEgg X may be a completely new airframe.

The original Egg folded, arms and every one , into its shell – unique and brilliant. The PowerEgg X, on the opposite hand, sits horizontally, but it doesn’t need to fly; you either attach drone arms or a camcorder grip & tripod mount. Also entirely unique, but wholly different – and a particular contender together of the simplest drones available immediately .

The optional PowerEgg X Wizard pack pushes further into the unknown with a water-proof housing for the fuselage and polystyrene skids allowing the aircraft to land on water. With recent reports about the risks of flying within the rain, this might really be a godsend for those that wish to leave altogether weathers.

This isn’t alittle drone (or “Autonomous Personal AI Camera & Drone” as PowerVision put it), coming in at 862g take-off weight. it’s slightly but a DJI Mavic 2, though with arms attached and unfolded the aircraft is significantly bigger, and may hold its own in finishes up to 23mph/38kph (see this text on the effect of wind speed with different drones). it’s equipped with AI collision avoidance (forward and downward facing) and subject tracking.

The camera is capable of a powerful 60fps in 4K, doubling the frame rate of most competitors, rising to 240fps at 720P. Despite the unorthodox shape, the drone can carve through the air at 40mph (65kph), and the 3,800mAh batteries will keep it aloft for half-hour , with a variety up to 6km. Or detach the arms and you’ll control the gimbal directly from your phone app, getting 4 hours of operation as an AI camcorder.rs.

PowerEgg X Explorer vs PowerEgg X Wizard


The PowerEgg X was announced at CES 2020 and is now shipping two packages: the essential PowerEgg X Explorer pack gives you the the drone, controller, case, one battery, camcorder grip & tripod mount. for an additional $349 / £300 you get the PowerEgg X Wizard pack, which incorporates a spare battery, everything you’ll got to fly through rain and land on water, and a further fabric case (which has no apparent use).

Design and controller


The PowerEgg X is housed during a glossy white shell which separates with the assistance of a cloth tab to reveal the camera and three-axis gimbal and downward-facing sensors (optical and ultrasonic). There are two distinct gaps within the side of the inner egg and push-buttons next to the present which press in to get rid of the upper portion of the egg shell.

Inside this is often the smart battery, with four charge indicator LEDs and power button (these are often seen and used operated through the upper shell because of a sprung button and translucent blocks). With the highest off, it’s easy to ascertain where the 2 foldable arms are often pressed in to finish the airframe, before the highest is pushed back to place, clicking to secure the arms. When using as a camcorder, the arms are replaced with an edge and / or a tripod mount which plug into these slots.

The two folding arm units, in light grey with white fold-out propellers, have neat landing legs which fold out from the top , meaning the PowerEgg can land on taller grass than any of the Mavic series. These also are the texture which push into the landing gear , though to make sure they’re not blown off by the downdraft rubber & Velcro loops are used too.

On either side of the shell, tucked under rubber, are Micro-USB and USB-C connectors, though the batteries are charged using an external charging brick. Under the battery may be a slot for a Micro-SD card, and additionally there’s 6GB internal storage – handy during a pinch.

The controller, which may be charged via USB (handily the supplied charging brick also has two USB charging connectors), is additionally gloss white and gray , with a really pleasing solid feeling and an edge large enough to carry the larger iPhone (even during a case). it’s a USB connector on the rear and short USB cables or lightning, Micro USB and USB-C phones are provided.

Although this is often a sophisticated product, after browsing the transition a few of times it all seems logical and fairly fast. The well-designed case goes an extended thanks to making this process seem less painless than, for instance , screwing the props on a Phantom. to take care of the egg shape some edges seem a touch sharp, but otherwise there’s little to complain about and therefore the packaging exudes reassuring quality.

PowerEgg X: photo performance


The 12-megapixel camera is adequate, and therefore the 27mm equivalent images arrive without the fisheye effect which some drones still stick with , but the interior image processing is a smaller amount aggressive than competitors like DJI’s, which appeared to be reflected in slightly disappointing images, especially in lower light. The 1/2.8-inch CMOS sensor (with f/1.8 aperture) is smaller than on most competing drones, which could have something to try to to thereupon . That said, Raw is on offer, as are manual camera settings, so there’s room to enhance your photos in software. A minor vignetting correction definitely helps.

In waterproof mode soft edges are pronounced by the clear plastic shell. it’s also susceptible to reflections when the sunshine is within the wrong place – flying toward the sunshine creates ‘awesome flare’ or ’irritating reflections’ (depending on your photographic style).

Interestingly we captured some shots in early tests which appeared to have sharper areas to the left of the frame than the proper . We performed a firmware update then , and flew again. the difficulty that wasn’t perceptible, but we don’t know if it had been the lesser wind, better weather, or software that solved it. It’s certainly apparent, though, that the drone favors good light.

PowerEgg X: video performance


ideo footage is sweet but imperfect within the default settings. It’s almost crisp as you’d expect for 4K, which can be explained by the lower bit-rate (75Kbps) than some competitors (Mavic 2 is 100Kbps, for example), but it’s still impressive, again, especially in brighter light. The app makes choosing different recording modes easy, albeit a tad slow to reply to screen presses (this might rather be cleared in an update). On the plus side, you’ll set high frame rate records as ‘slow mo’ as you record, so you don’t got to change speed in an editing app.

The AI modes, for the foremost part, seem to form an excellent job of tracking people, and there’s also a full range of QuickShot selfies which might be very familiar to DJI users. Usability of those features is OK instead of brilliant, but the tracking worked well. Standard GPS point of interest is there too and, of course, return to home.

Where we actually fell out with the app, though, was in using the drone as a camera without its arms. The mount is just too near the body to connect to a full-size tripod, so only compact ones or a lighting stand did the trick on behalf of me . Once done we weren’t able, indoors a minimum of to urge the AI system to ascertain me or follow me. Perhaps it’s for full-body shots only. That’d add up , since the drone’s internal fan is loud enough to be a drag during a piece-to-camera. That said, the SyncVoice feature (which allows you to record from your phone’s microphone onto your videos as you shoot) may be a great idea, and would make tons of sense a couple of meters faraway from the camera outdoors.

In flight


The controller feels great within the hand, and keeps an enormous phone in only the proper place (above the sticks), though it might are nice if there have been two finger-wheels instead of just the one which operates the gimbal.

In the air the drone is extremely nimble – extremely so in ‘Professional’ mode, although the collision sensors aren’t active then. Confusingly you’ll enable them via settings while flying ‘P’, but this doesn’t actually turn them on. N(ormal) may be a little more restrained and E(asy) is effectively a tripod mode for slow shots. placed on the shell and landing gear and things change; the battery is chomped through in half the time, and therefore the drone is slower within the air, especially descending, but still vary maneuverable.

The app is strategically , with camera settings, drone settings, and AI flight features all easily accessed, and a physical turn on the controller for the most mode. It did seem to wish to be started again for every battery change, and there have been some odd text translations in there (you tap “I know” after each tutorial page), but this might well improve.

Powervision PowerEgg X verdict


The PowerEgg X may be a fantastic little bit of kit, with some minor let downs which software and firmware updates will little question address. For video and high-frame-rate stuff there’s nothing love it (assuming the sunshine is OK), except for photographers more concerned with stills images are only OK. That keeps it from being a 5-star drone, but in normal operation this is often still one among the simplest machines on the market and, if you’re a watersports or action fan, the PowerEgg X Wizard isn’t just the sole option – it’s an excellent one too.

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