Even the best drones that are currently available like to fly in as ideal weather conditions as possible. They also can’t exactly be used as handheld imaging devices, unless you want to look like you’re constantly about to launch the thing or poke someone’s eye out. However, the PowerVision PowerEgg X aims to be one of the best all-rounder drones available, which can be flown in all types of weather conditions and handheld like a traditional video camera.
With the ability to land on water when you buy into the PowerEgg X Wizard bundle, this isn’t your run-of-the-mill drone. This makes the initial specs very appealing, but can the PowerEgg X deliver in all departments as well as the rest of the competition?
The egg shape of the PowerVision PowerEgg X is the central hub for all the other accessories. Instead of being a folding unit like many other drones, the PowerEgg X has a modular design, depending on if it is to be used as a regular drone or as a handheld camera.
The PowerEgg X also comes in two kit configurations. The Explorer kit includes the drone body, configurable propeller arms, camera strap, battery, spare propellers, and a controller. The Wizard kit is the most fully-featured with the weatherproof housing, water landing gear, extra battery and propellers, and a mini tripod. Out of the two versions, the Explorer kit is the most cost-effective.
From a top-down view, the PowerEgg X almost looks like an Easter egg designed by Apple. The simple and white outer shell hides all the fancy workings underneath like the gimbal and camera and the whole package weighs in at 862g, fully laden. Each propeller arm fits neatly into the main body housing, which also attaches to the hand strap for handheld shooting.
The controller is a simple unit, with just the right amount of buttons and dials. There is also a custom button to assign your own functionality. The control sticks have a rubber surround for weatherproofing, plus a foldable holder for keeping a smartphone in place.
The PowerVision PowerEgg X in Use
As basic specs go, the PowerVision PowerEgg X has a maximum flight speed of 40 mph and a total flight time of 30 minutes. As it’s an all-weather flyer, it is able to handle wind speeds up to 23mph, thanks in part to the very large propellers. In heavy wind conditions, flight time does drop, but on average this was to around 23 minutes.
This flight time can also drop with all the weatherproof housing and floats attached, which affect flight stability to an extent. Although the floats allow the drone to land on water, the conditions can’t be too fast-moving. When the drone is used in handheld camera mode, it can get in roughly three and a half hours of shooting time.
In terms of automatic flight functionality, the PowerEgg X has very efficient obstacle detection and sensors to aid with the landing. Most of the advanced flight functionality can be accessed through the accompanying smartphone app. These include the different modes for points of interest, Follow Me mode, and Time-Lapse mode. All the automated flight features work as intended which is ideal for the beginner.
When the drone is used as a regular handheld camera, it can use facial recognition to follow a subject. There is also a built-in microphone, which unfortunately does pick up some of the sounds of the internal fan. There is a built-in noise reduction system, but the audio output is really just an added extra.
The 12MP 1/2.8-inch CMOS sensor performs a reasonable job of capturing a scene through the 27mm f/1.8 lens. The ISO range for stills is 100 to 6400 and 100 to 3200 for video, which gives some leeway for low-light conditions. However, the best results come in when the camera is allowed to shoot in reasonable light levels.
The waterproof housing can affect image quality to an extent for overall sharpness, but the ability to shoot in any weather condition trumps this negative every time. Video footage can be shot in 4K with a frame rate between 24-60 fps, 1080p at 24-120 fps and 720p at 24-240 fps. The video output in MP4 or MOV is reasonable, but it does lack some of the more advanced features that professionals may require, such as D-Log and flat profiles.
How Does It Compare?
When you need a fly anywhere drone to take with you as you travel, you still need to pay top dollar. Even if this is for the peace of mind of the best quality camera, recording, and video facilities. The YUNEEC Typhoon H3 Hexacopter is almost twice the cost of the PowerVision PowerEgg X, but it also comes with a Leica-type camera and is very capable of producing high-quality 4K footage at 60 fps.
Although the YUNEEC doesn’t have the capabilities to land on water, this type of drone is for those who want to put image quality above everything else. The YUNEEC has a rock-solid build quality and is intended for those who want to shoot broadcast-level drone footage and fly on an almost daily basis.
|PowerVision PowerEgg X||YUNEEC Typhoon H3 Hexacopter|
|Flight Time||30 Minutes||25 Minutes|
|Output||Jpeg/MP4 and .Mov||Jpeg/MP4|
PowerVision PowerEgg X
The all-round usability and water landing capabilities of the PowerVision PowerEgg X make it a very versatile drone indeed. The flight time is respectable and all the waterproofing mods definitely give peace of mind for shooting in any type of weather. Being able to use the drone as a hand-held video camera is a wonderful bonus, especially if you don’t already own a dedicated video camera.
The modular approach means the drone takes longer to set up than a simple fold-down solution. The image output is quite good for a consumer-level drone, as is the f/1.8 aperture. The overall output isn’t as good as what you would find on, say, the DJI Mavic Air 2. But the PowerEgg X also has the advantage of being able to venture out in any type of weather condition.
In total, the PowerEgg X has a lot of useful features which will benefit those who need to shoot on rainy days and want a drone that can double up as a reasonable handheld cam.