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Quick Question - New to Inspire

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I have an opportunity to purchase a "New" Inspire 1 V1 in a hard case with a battery and a Zenmuse X3 4K Camera for $1K, new in box but 2 years old (stored in a climate-controlled closet since purchased and never connected or updated). Props are still in package, battery has stayed at 40% factory charge and has never been charged or discharged. This seems like a great deal, but I don't know the versions and changes of the Inspire line, nor the problems or setbacks I might get into with a V1. Trying to get into a decent drone cheaply so I can afford a Sentera 6X Multi-Spectral sensor, and want to be able to add FLIR in the future as well. Attempting to set up a well-rounded drone business capable of photo/video, survey / agricultural, tower and power line inspection, and whatever else I can find to do with it.

Is this a good deal?

Is the battery going to be OK after 2 years of storage?

Any features missing that might bite me in the future? May need to add RTK / PPK eventually.

Thanks in advance, don't want to miss this if it is a great deal.

Jason
 
Well, considering I just bought a couple of Inspire 1 setups myself, I think I may be able to add some valid commentary.

First off, $1k for a brand new Inspire 1 is a *decent* deal. Not a steal of a deal and not a rip-off.

Ultimately, you want the V2 upgrades for carrying anything more than a X3/Z3 camera. That includes the XTs.

The V2 needs:

- All 4 motors replaced with 3510H motors (cost about $240-300 range)
- Lower gimbal carrier replaced with a X5 gimbal carrier ($125-180 range)
- Landing Gear Risers ($20 range)

Then you can carry heavier camera payloads. I just did the motors and have the risers in for my V1 and will have the gimbal carrier by next week (I have X3/Z3/X5 and X5R cameras).

Also, in regards to the TB47 battery. It is probably fine, but they haven't been manufactured for a number of years, so regardless of it sitting for 2 years, it is older than that, thus it should be expected to be "less capacity" than new. How much? No-one knows, just don't expect as-new flight times.

Another thing to consider is that TB47/TB48 batteries are impossible to find and people selling them are all selling old-stock/used batteries and NONE of them will be "like new" and none will have full time available. People are also asking ignorant prices for used batteries because of the lack of new stock (just look around and you will see STUPID prices for them).

Just something to consider... Honestly, Offer $800-850 at most and then it is an OK deal... You will spend $300+ on a decent TB48 battery if you can find someone honest that is selling a good one.
 
Thanks for that, Brian. I had come across a few of those concerns but your insight makes the decision a lot more informed. I'm capable of doing the upgrades, but the more I consider hanging a $10K sensor package under an older, modified drone with questionable batteries the less I like the idea. :) I think I need to either move the budget up to include a new Inspire or even Matrice, or down to accommodate a Phantom 4 Multispectral. The latter has less chance of death-by-wife, but the former is a lot cooler.
 
Thanks for that, Brian. I had come across a few of those concerns but your insight makes the decision a lot more informed. I'm capable of doing the upgrades, but the more I consider hanging a $10K sensor package under an older, modified drone with questionable batteries the less I like the idea. :) I think I need to either move the budget up to include a new Inspire or even Matrice, or down to accommodate a Phantom 4 Multispectral. The latter has less chance of death-by-wife, but the former is a lot cooler.
I concur with Brian. I honestly wouldn't mess with the V1 UNLESS there were a decent battery package. If there were multiple batteries, I'd almost consider the purchase for the peripherals alone (spare remote for dual operator, spare props, batteries, etc.). But with only one battery, I would pass.

D
 
I have an Inspire 1 V1. I'm wondering with so many of the V1 aircraft still out there flying for both commercial and hobby use why no 3part companies have made an aftermarket battery? There is still a market out there.

Now THAT is a GREAT question...

There are some Chinese vendors doing some "unique" battery setups, but they do not have stock here in North America, and as such an order takes 8-10 weeks or more.

Beyond the wait, they are also reusing the "smart battery" portion of used batteries and reprogramming them to the specs they want. That is on ONE of the aftermarket batteries.

I do believe a French company is also doing recells of used batteries as well.

Ultimately, someone needs to do ALL NEW manufacturing of new batteries and new smartboards in those batteries. Until then we are "stuck" with what we have already out there. I don't think any serious battery vendor wants to deal with a half-baked market that relies upon the end users sending in useable "cores" (for the smartboard/tops).

I mean how many of those have gone bad electronically?

How many have structural damage to the top/frames/circuit board?

I am sure if DJI would partner with someone there is a market, the issue is DJI wants the Inspire 1 dead. It is obvious by the way they just stopped making batteries a few years ago.

If they made the batteries, they would sell, no questions asked. The issue is they made a GREAT product with a good price point. They offered the X5R camera without codec licenses. It is a "one and done" purchase. That is a HUGE difference from the way they offer codec licensing for the X7 camera, as it is a YEARLY fee for the codecs. That "gravy-train" made DJI get greedy and stupid and was the ONLY reason to stop battery production for the Inspire 1.

Honestly, the Inspire 2 has the same major issues the Inspire 1 has, that being the lack of granular control in hover (it does as well as a big drone can, but it still moves around a bit). The extra time by doubling the batteries was great, but people have done well with a single battery and made it work on the Inspire 1. The other aspect is the object avoidance, which, quite honestly, I don't think ANYONE truly trusts it, so it is more of a "ok, so it has OA, turn it off as it just wastes juice" kind of feature.

Yes, the X7 camera gets GREAT shots, so that is a definite upgrade, but if you NEED to go that far, then the licensing doesn't matter to you anyways as you are FIRMLY in the pro-sector making serious money with the setup.

Beyond that, the Inspire 1 is still a great entry into the pro-drone market. We just NEED BATTERIES!!!!

Ok, so you can spend more money and buy a Matrice 600 and with the gimbal adapter that utilizes the same cameras the Inspire 1 uses, but ultimately it is the only path left for "new batteries" since they still make the M600 batteries (and yeah, they don't work in the Inspire 1s). I mean, honestly, it is obvious they are still making the technology since it is the same, it just is coded for the M600 instead of the Inspire 1 and has a different top.

Big detractor for the Matrice 600 is the fact it is nowhere near as portable as the Inspire 1. It is HUGE in comparison.

In the end, until someone gets a hold of the software used to reprogram the smartboards in the TB47/TB48 and works through it and is able to put new LiPo (or is that LiPoHV) cells in these and resets the programming to account for new cells and that software/technique gets disseminated to those of us technically savvy enough to accomplish it, we are at a very dead end.

I personally have a TB47 or two that I can use to experiment with. I would have no issue doing such, someone just needs to point me in the direction of the software/hardware I need to invest in to get it working. Hell, the path of least resistance is buying a TB48D M600 battery (I believe that is the one that is identical to the TB48 for the Inspire 1) as a "donor" for not only the cells, but also to see if it's board can be reprogrammed to be used in the Inspire 1.

Imagine how great that would be, buy a commerical "new" TB48D, take the top off, reprogram the smart board and put an Inspire 1 top on and be done. Oh to want for the little things in life...
 

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