The popular French drone company has a new machine, the new Parrot Anafi is a folding drone with a focus on the camera. Aside from it’s solid portability, the main selling feature of this new drone is the large 21MP camera sensor.
Announced June 6th, set to start delivering to consumers in July, let’s see all the details of the new Parrot Anafi.
It’s been a while since we’ve seen a new retail machine from Parrot. They’ve released some powerful packages to get more out of the Bebop 2, and they’ve got a couple commercial machines, but Anafi is their first new retail quadcopter in quite some time.
Sometimes the wait is worth it. Parrot has taken to heart the concerns and desires that most of us express with the existing batch of compact, folding drones out there. Primarily, we are super excited to see their 21MP camera in action.
Parrot Anafi overview
Running down the spec sheet, as we’ll do for you below, you’ll see many similar items as most drones at similar price points today. Anafi takes to the sky at just short of a 10-inch by 7-inch rectangle. It weighs just shy of 3/4 of a pound and flies for about 25 minutes per charge.
33mph, 21MP camera, zoom lens, RTH and light carbon fiber, but no obstacle avoidance.
While in the air, the Parrot Anafi can handle winds up to 31mph, similarly, it has a top speed of 33mph. Dual-band 2.4 and 5.8GHz operating frequencies enable Wi-Fi based connectivity up to about 2.5 miles. GPS and GLONASS combine to improve your flight, and enable RTH functionality. You’ll want to keep an eye on the drone, however, as there is no obstacle avoidance mentioned in the specs list.
Anafi is built long and skinny. Folded down it packs into a pouch approx ten inches long and 3 inches square. One of the more curious build features we’re seeing is the injection of hollow glass beads into the carbon fiber. This helps make things light and improves flexibility. We are unfamiliar with the process or the results, be sure we’ll be paying attention when the drone hits the market in July.
The remote control is less portable, but still decently small with a folding phone mount. Functionality is limited from the remote, with just a few simple buttons. Connect your smartphone via USB cable to unlock all the best features.
The new FreeFlight 6 app is packed with the best flight features Parrot has to offer. This includes several self-piloting modes for selfies, follow-me functions and more. This includes new Dolly Zoom effects, along with Hyperlapse and Slow-Motion video capture, to create cinematic video at the hands of any pilot.
Sadly, Parrot still locks their full Follow Me mode behind a paywall.
That brings us to the camera. We are unaware of any drone on the market under $1000 that has a 21MP camera, until today. Anafi packs away 5344×4016 pixels in their camera, which sits behind a zoom lens. We have plenty to cover here, so let’s give you a full camera section:
Anafi camera overview
Starting at the top, you’ll want to know that the camera on the Parrot Anafi is a 21MP sensor that shoot 4K video at up to 30fps. The camera is on a 2-axis stabilized gimbal, using the extra pixels on the big sensor for electronic stabilization.
HDR mode enables the next level of photo quality – this is a feature we all but expect from every new drone from here forward.
Parrot was smart to put effort into their glass. An ASPH lens weith f/2.4 aperture offers 23-69mm focal length for photos, 26-78mm for video. Minimum focal distance is 5 feet. Combine this with a digital zoom that Parrot calls Lossless up to 2.8x on 1080p video, 1.4x on 4K video. The zoom then keeps going to a maximum of 3x.
In keeping up with a major competitor for this new drone, the Parrot Anafi offers the same 100Mbps video data rate as the DJI Mavic Air. We still need to see the results before we judge, but this all sounds like a recipe for success!
Hold on, we need a reality check. Far be it for us to call out one small specification to make a conclusion, but the Parrot Anafi is equipped with only a 1/2.4-inch CMOS camera sensor.
As I say, we will not judge the Anafi for this one spec, but nearly all viable competitors pack a larger and far more common 1/2.3-inch sensor. We generally tout a full 1-inch sensor as being where superb images come from.
As always, we’re eager to see the drone in action before we make our decisions.
What’s going on there?
We found one specification that we thought was really strange. The remote control is equipped with a 2,500mAh battery and is rated for up to five and a half hours of battery life. That is, 5h30 with an iOS device, but only 2h30 with an Android device.
At least we can still use our Android devices and the remote will last long enough for a battery or two in the drone.
|Style||Quadcopter - foldable|
|Size||Folded: 9.6 x 2.6 x 2.5 inches
Ready to fly: 9.6 x 6.9 x2.5 inches
|Max speed||33 mph|
|Max service ceiling||Not provided|
|Max vertical speed||13.2ft/s|
|Battery life||Max 25 minutes|
|Range||Max 2.5 miles|
|Camera||1/2.4" CMOS 21MP 4K
23-78mm zoom lens with up to 3X digital zoom.
2-axis stabilization plus electronic stabilization
|Video recording||Cinematic 4K - 24fps (4096x2160)
4K - 24/25/30fps (3840x2160)
FHD - 24/25/30/48/50/60/96fps (1920x1080)
|Storage||micro SD, includes 16GB card|
|Remote controller||2.4GHz and 5.8GHz Wi-Fi
Max 2.5 mile operating range
2,500 mAh rechargeable battery
Up to 7-inch tablet
microUSB, Lighting and USB Type-C
|Mobile support||Fly by Android or iOS device|
|Flight modes||Follow-me: behind, in front, circle, side (requires in-app payment)
Tap to fly map navigation
Return to home
Dolly Zoom, Boomerang, Orbit, Tornado, Parabola, Discover Reveal, Epic, Rise and 360 degree.
|Hover accuracy||Not provided|
Parrot Anafi price and availability
Parrot says that the drone will be in stock on their site for July 2nd, 2018. That is nearly one full month after today’s announcement. The kit will include the Anafi drone, one battery, the remote control, the carrying case, extra propellers and the tools and cables to get you into the sky. They’re also including a 16GB microSD card.
Keeping in line with the competition, the Parrot Anafi is less expensive than the DJI Mavic Air and the GDU O2. The starting price for the Parrot Anafi is $699. Pre-orders are being accepted now in one color, dark grey.
We are always excited to see new drones on the market. Parrot has been a long time player, providing their unique spin on more than just aerial machines, we’re happy to see a new drone from them, eager to get our hands on the new Anafi.
Are you looking forward to flying the Parrot Anafi?