Meet the DJI Simulator

For the past three years I've been flying, I found the only way to really advance my skills with the drone is to go out and actually fly. Sometimes, it's tough to get out there every day for whatever reason, which is where I see the simulator becoming very beneficial for pilots looking to increase their skill level.

It may sound like a silly thing to fire up a "game" on your computer to fly a drone, but I have come to find out it is far more than just that. A few months back after getting into FPV, I downloaded DRL Simulator from Steam and ordered a receiver for my computer. From there, I was able to link my controller and fly these FPV drones freely to get a hang of them. In all honesty, I think having the ability to go on the computer to practice has been something that has helped me when it comes to flying those in real life.

If you are asking yourself how this would help, think about it this way. You can fly whenever you want with the controller that you'd normally fly with. Having that ability and knowing that you aren't putting your actual drone at risk allows you to try things you would never do before on the simulator before you go out to do them in real life. This is great, because you have all the time you need to practice new movements and camera work from your own computer.

Seeing DJI come out with something like this is definitely awesome. It would be even cooler to see them throw in a Google Maps style version where you can virtually go anywhere in the world to fly. Think about all the options that would open up for scouting locations to get familiar with the environment to practice specific shots on the aircraft you'd be flying there. I would love to see this come out for Mac soon so I can give it a try. I'm also hoping that the program is realistic enough to give a real experienceof flying. 

For more on the simulator, check out DJI's website.

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Bill Peppas's picture

I gave it a try these days, although I feel like the throttle response is a less sensitive than normal in the Phantom 4 Pro at least.

Color Thief's picture

Buying a small indoor quad like a Blade Nano, seems like a better way to up your piloting skills to me. Once you can fly that thing accurately, a phantom is a piece of cake.

Mark James's picture

I like the idea. I've had my Inspire up about 10 times in the last few days, just because I found a window to practice. With only two batteries it still leaves a lot of down time. The simulator could increese true flight time productivity.

Paulo Macedo's picture

Ahh yes, simulators.
I hope people get in touch there with wind and weather simulation.
I mean, i am a regular user of Flight Sims, being it X-Plane, Flight Simulator or Lockheed Martin Prepar3D. I was like, damn I can take a 737-800 out the runway and I even know how to change the squawk code on a 787. From takeoff to landing, I can do it all.
Then last year I've set ass on a small Piper cherokee, I did not takeoff neither landed it, but flew for a few miles up in the sky, every single time a small wind sheer passed by the aircraft shook in a way I've never experienced on a Flight sim. Every time it happened, a single drop of urine came off my bladder into my pants.
So, to make the point, if this is not well simulated, the chances you will lose the Drone are pretty high, never flown a drone (kinda don't like'em), but I've got friends saying that wind can knock it off pretty easly.

"Buying a small indoor quad like a Blade Nano, seems like a better way to up your piloting skills to me." - Blade Nano will fly nowhere near like Inspire 2. With this, you can dial in the weather parameters and rehearse all the manoeuvres, intelligent flight modes before doing it in $5-7k or more worth of equipment.