DJI Phantom FC40 Review

DJI FC40 drone

The DJI Phantom FC40 is an RTF, high-end quadcopter that sends 720p HD live video to any iOS or Android mobile device. It includes most advanced features of the original DJI Phantom.

 

Overview

PROS:
  • The Phantom FC40 has the advanced features of the original Phantom plus live HD FPV video, which can be viewed on an iOS/Android mobile device.
  • There is even a smartphone holder on the remote controller. Although it comes with a DJI camera, it can accept any GoPro Wi-Fi camera.
  • Excellent stability and power.
CONS:
  • Mobile app does not indicate battery level.
  • There is no operating manual.
  • At this price, you might be disappointed that it does not include more efficient V2 props, extended Wi-Fi nor a larger battery as in later Phantom models.
  • The camera angle is not adjustable during flight.

The DJI Phantom FC40 takes the original DJI Phantom to new heights with the addition of live, streaming, first-person-view, aerial videos that are breathtaking. It includes an FPV camera, but also mounts any Wi-Fi capable GoPro camera or any other camera that includes a GoPro mount. FPV video can be streamed directly to any Android or iOS smartphone via a free app that also displays FC40 telemetry.

All of the features you love about the original DJI Phantom are included such as IOC and GPS navigation functionality. Video is streamed on a 2.4GHz channel, while control functions utilize 5.8GHz, so there is no interference between the two.

Features

• A complete RTF quadcopter that only requires a battery charge and four AA batteries to be ready for its first flight
• 720p/30fps HD video recording to micro SD card or live FPV Wi-Fi streaming to mobile phones
• FPV range up to 100 meters
• 2.4GHz video channel and 5.8GHz channels for control
• Self-tightening propellers without easy-to-lose prop nuts
• Spare set of propellers included
• Intelligent Orientation Control autopilot add cinematic quality
• Return-to-home GPS feature activated via free software download
• 12VDC power outputs for powered payload accessories
• 12 minute flight times and up to 0.8km flight range

 

What Buyers Are Saying

Man holding a checklist

Any DJI Phantom FC40 review usually includes positive comments about the power and range of this machine, which is often why it was purchased. The vast majority of reviewers are pleased, but there is a significant minority of cases where the return-to-home feature fails and the aircraft flies away out of control. Return-to-home does require acquisition of 6 GPS satellites, so an insufficient number of signals could be the problem in these cases.

Here are some buyer tips:

• Third-parties offer waterproofing for the FC40
• Buying a second stock battery is more cost-effective than buying the upgrade battery
• Be sure to install extra GPS and NAZA control software in the correct order
• If you have calibration problems, check the obvious that the compass chip is plugged in

Rating and Conclusion

The DJI Phantom FC40 is a great value for first-time FPV quadcopter pilots. It is powerful, with excellent flying characteristics and several advanced features such as return-to-home, IOC and longer than average flight times. The range is very good too. Unfortunately, the model is discontinued, but you can still find some available or read about other quadcopters.

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