DJI Focus – A game changer for serious filmmakers?

Drone manufacturer DJI has announced the launch of the ‘Focus’, a wireless, handheld device that will give serious filmmakers a new level of flexibility when it comes to getting the perfect shot. It may not look like much, but this little device promises to put a lot of smiles on the faces of those who work in cinematography.

In a move directed toward the serious prosumer/professional photography market, DJI’s new Focus tool will allow precision drone camera control from the ground. With the twist of the knob, focus and aperture can be controlled remotely via a focus wheel connected to the camera.

The handheld device can connect wirelessly with DJI’s Inspire drone when it’s carrying one of the company’s Zenmuse X5 or X5R cameras. It can also be used with DJI’s handheld gimble/Ronin rig and other ground-based cameras. This is another bold step into the world of professional photography from the Chinese giants.

Let’s face it, the majority of pilots are usually occupied with keeping their drone in the air and pointing it in the right direction. There’s not much time to worry about camera focus and aperture. But for cinematography crews and pilots looking to take their shoots to the next level, the tiny details matter.

When used as part of a ground shoot, the DJI Focus has a range of about 100 metres. But when paired with one of the company’s Xenmuse X5 drone cameras, integration with Xenmuse’s remote increases the operational range to around five kilometers.

The new gadget is being sold on the company’s website for just under $2,000. The price point perhaps highlights that this isn’t an everyday, must-have piece of kit for amateur drone enthusiasts. But for the more serious filmmakers, the DJI Focus may be the start of a new level of flexibility in aerial photography.



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