DJI Spark Gesture Control
In this blog post I want to give you an overview of DJI Spark Gesture Control. How it works, which gestures you have to make and where you have to pay attention. As I wrote in my DJI Spark Review, I more of a camera guy than a drone guy. Which means my priority is to get great footage of my activities rather than flying a drone itself. And DJI Spark Gesture Control is a great and easy to use feature that supports it. (Btw. DJI Spark is the first drone to have this feature).
How to use it
Before you can use Spark gesture control you have to activate it. You can either do it during the initial set up or later on in DJI Go App.
PalmLaunch (take off)
- Hold DJI Spark in your hand and power it on. Wait for the LED indicators to blink yellow.
Watch for your fingers and propellers to avoid serious injuries! When in doubt use the propeller guards when you first try it. (DJI suggest to use them all the time in gesture mode).
- Tap the power button twice a the front LEDs should blink yellow slowly.
- FaceAware will start automatically and activated successfully, the Spark beeps twice and the front LEDs become solid green. If it blinks red twice, then FaceAware has failed and you have to tap the power button twice again.
- The front LEDs will then light up red after the motors start spinning. You can release Spark and it will hover in place.
- Place your palm in front of DJI Spark’s camera with your fingers held together.
- Move your palm left/right or up/down to position Spark.
- Always maintain the same distance between your palm to your body and your palm to DJI Spark.
- When you move forward/backwards Spark will follow you.
- Stand in front of your Spark, place your palm about 0.7m in front of Spark’s camera and wave quickly. (like you would say goodbye).
- When Spark recognises your gesture it will blink green twice.
- It will now ascend, fly backwards and hover about 3m away, 2m above the ground.
Do not move until Spark is in position and remember it only has sensors on the front!
- The LED is now solid green and you are now tracked.
- If Spark loses track of you, you can activate follow by raising both arms above your head in a Y shape. Hold this position for about 2 seconds.
- Make a frame with your hands while facing towards the camera. You should be within 7m range of Spark, but you can position it wherever you want.
- Selfie gesture is recognized successfully when the Front LEDs blink red slowly. That’s also the timer for your selfie (otherwise you would have a lot of pics doing the frame with your fingers). Countdown is set to 3 seconds. When Front LEDs blink red quickly, the camera is indicating it is about to take a selfie.
- Selfies are taken in 1440×1080 px (4:3) resolution.
- Raise your arms above your head in a Y shape for two seconds, when tracking is active the front LEDs turn green.
- When Beckon is successfully recognised, Spark will fly toward you and hover in place 1.5m above ground and a little over 1m away from you.
- The lights will now turn red.
- Face the camera and place your palm approximately 0.5m underneath your Spark. You shouldn’t be away further than 1.5m.
- Spark will slowly descend and land on your palm.
- The propellers will stop rotating automatically
Video Recording in Gesture Control
Unfortunately it’s currently not possible to start/stop video recording. But what bothers me even more is that you also can’t start video recording in gesture control mode when connected to a phone. The app automatically switches to photo mode and the option to get into video mode is greyed out. I really hope this will be changed with a future firmware update. Only reason that would prevent Spark from video recording in gesture mode could be the fact that FOV for video is narrower than in photo mode.
That’s it so far. Let’s see if new gestures will follow with future firmware updates. It would be really great to also start video recording with Spark Gesture Control.