The Parrot AR Drone 2.0 arrives pretty much fully functional, with an instruction manual included. It is a good idea to read it thoroughly before you attempt to fly the Drone, just to get a feel for how it operates and how the controls work. The battery needs charging before it can fly and this can take anywhere up to two hours. A special feature of this Drone is the option to control and operate it via your smart-phone or tablet, which adds a nifty, unique touch. As soon as the battery is fully charged add your device to the Parrot AR Drone 2.0, wait a short while for synchronization, and then you are ready for action!
The controls on the Parrot AR Drone 2.0 are intuitive and pretty extensive, such as, options to alter the flight ceiling and the rate at which the Parrot AR Drone ascends. The controls can be altered in line with your expertise and because of this, problems are less likely to occur or are easier to handle if they do. The good news is that this particular quadricopter is certainly well within the capabilities of a beginner.
The Drone needs very little space to fly in, unlike other models. This means that you can fly when the mood takes you, without needing to plan a journey to a larger arena. The pleasure is certainly enhanced when you are able to fly at the drop of a hat.
One noted problem is that it seems that the Parrot AR Drone is not as durable or hardy as other models. Although it can withstand slight bumps and scratches, when the Drone crashes, it lands hard. It doesn’t help that this particular model is also prone to “fly aways”: this is when the Drone fails to respond to requested actions and seems unable to recognize the controls.
A familiar problem with most quadracopters on the current market is the short life of the battery once airborne, and the Parrot AR Drone is no exception to this. The charge time is very long considering that it only produces about ten minutes of actual flying time (less if using the video). It is probably a good idea to invest in some longer lasting batteries (2000mAH) or even a charger.
A trick way to increase the battery life is by changing out the brass bushings (2 on each gear shaft). This will increase the battery time as well as the brushless motor life which will allow you to operate your drone more efficiently. Click here to learn how to swap out the bushings. Conversion is simple and it only takes 5 minutes.
The Parrot AR Drone has a low-battery alarm, which sounds when the battery life becomes short. However, please note that when this alarm sounds, the Drone needs to land immediately. There is very little scope for error and if the Drone is not put down when the alarm first sounds, it is likely to lose control and plummet to the ground.
If you fly the Parrot AR Drone every weekend, you’ll probably need to invest in new Drone propellers for optimal flying efficiency. Obviously sooner if you crash into objects.
The Drone has a camera attached to it and allows live streaming of videos to your smart-phone or tablet. This is a unique feature and it is pretty impressive to see live aerial footage as it happens. One slight fault, however, is that the front facing camera is not angled, which can sometimes have an impact on quality.
An option for the Parrot AR Drone is that there’s a separate GPS flight recorder that will improve stabilization as well as record flights and videos on the AR Drone Academy Map.
To summarize: Although the Parrot AR Drone is not the sturdiest model out there with crashes (and subsequent repairs) inevitable, the easy to use controls mean that this model is perfect for beginners or intermediate users.
For more customer reviews and latest pricing on the Parrot AR Drone, click here.