LAS VEGAS — Typically, you'll see lightweight cameras and GoPros hitching a ride on drones, but soon DSLRs will be able to come along for the ride courtesy of ProDrone. The maker of the Byrd quadcopter has developed mounts capable of holding large DSLR cameras for capturing images on your next flight.
The first product in ProDrone's new Ultimate Flying Platform is a static mount due out in the second quarter of 2016. Pricing hasn't been set yet, but ProDrone spokesman Nicolia Wiles said the cost should be less than $100 for the static mount. A three-axis gimbal aimed at capturing video will follow in the third quarter.
The idea behind the mounts is to let people use their own cameras, Wiles said, even if those cameras are weightier than a drone's typical payload. ProDrone's Byrd was built to handle the extra weight, opting for heavy-duty rotors as part of a design decision to future-proof the drone.
Besides its sturdy rotors, the ProDrone Byrd is noteworthy for its ability to fold up its wings, given the drone the shape of a PlayStation. That makes it easy to transport from place to place, Wiles said.
ProDrone's mount will work with the Ricoh GR 2 and several Sony cameras, such as the DSC-RX100M4, ILCE6000 and a7RII. You'll be able to view footage on ProDrone's app and take pictures from the ProDrone controller with those cameras; the mount will also be able to control zoom and focus with the Sony ILCE6000 and DSC-RX100M4. ProDrone is working to add support for other cameras as well.