- Usable video
- Cheap cost
- Offers optional headset for FPV view
- Doesn’t require FAA registration
- Very short flight time
- Can’t swap out battery
- No camera stabilization
- Rotors: 4 (2 blades per rotor) replaceable, 1.2-inch diameter
- Battery Size: 200-mAh Li-ion, non-removable
- Battery Life: 5-7 minutes
- Camera: 720p video, 1-megapixel stills
- Stabilization: 6-axis gyro stabilization
- Smartphone Controlled: Yes, over Wi-Fi with free app
- FAA Registration: No
- Size: 3 by 3 by 1.25 inch (including rotor protectors)
- Weight: 0.75 ounces
The AerixVidius HD is a small, sleek and shiny black drone, which is less than an inch high and about 3 inches wide (the rotor blade protectors included; the body of drone is only 1.7 inches wide). The drone weighs at 0.75 ounces (22 grams approx.), the 200-mAh battery contributing to most of that weight and is placed in the bottom of the body. The battery cannot be removed and only offer 6 minutes of flight time. It is charged from a USB port with the included cable. The tiny lens for the 720p camera is located just above the battery. There are four twin-blade rotors fitted on top of the tiny motors which lift the Vidius HD. The rotors can be easily removed with an included tool.
The controller is a little larger than the drone itself. It is made of white and black plastic, has two small control sticks, a power switch and two shoulder buttons that trigger the video recording and stunts. The controller feels a little odd because it is so small, but the sticks are comfortable to use.
Aerix VR Goggles
The Aerix VR Goggles are designed to hold smartphones which includes the large iPhone 7 Plus, in tray made of plastic which slides into the front of the goggles and puts it right in front of your eyes. The size of the goggles is larger than both the drone and controller. The goggles maybe large, but are comfortable to wear and have soft padding on the side that sits on your face. However, you cannot wear them with glasses; there just isn’t enough room inside for spectacles. But there is an option to adjust the focus of each lens separately, so most glasses wearers should be able to use the headset. As you cannot see anything else while wearing the goggles, you’ll have to memorize the button layout on the controller when you want to fly the drone in FPV. The shaky flying of the drone also makes the goggles a bit disorienting but it’s still fun to use. The app offered by Aerix is available for both iOS and Android devices. It enables the device to connect it to the 2.4Ghz Wi-Fi network created by the drone. The app can be used to control the drone and record or watch video sent by the drone.
It is pretty simple to get the Vidius HD into the air, but harder to keep up there. The Vidius maneuvers a bit slow in the default flying mode which is called 30 percent, but the 60 percent and 100 percent modes make the drone much faster and more maneuverable. The drone is also very sensitive to light touches on the control sticks in all of the modes. The Vidius HD doesn’t have the built-in stability provided by its own weight and size to help fly straight and level as is the case with larger drones, so the ride with the Vidius HD is a little bumpy. The drone does howeverhover nicely and it can be flown straight with practice. The built-in rotor blade protectors also help it to survive crashes. In the app, you can select the FPV flight mode which splits the preview into two smaller screens. Place the phone in the headset then put it on your head and you get to experience the pilot’s view. Controller has to be used in this mode as you cannot use the phone to maneuver the drone. The video is fairly sharp and gives you a good immersive experience.
The original Aerix Vidius was only capable of recording 480p video which was not good enough. The AerixVidius HD has an upgraded 720p camera which captures far better video than the previous version of the drone. The extra resolution makes the preview and the captured video sharper and more realistic only if the drone is still. However, the video is still not broadcast quality. The video is very noisy in areas with less light and somewhat soft and blurry when the drone is turning or moving fast. The camera does not have any stabilization or pan/tilt control so every shake and bump is captured by the drone. If the drone tilts left or right the camera also tilts with the body of the drone. There is a discernable lag between the video and the controls which makes maneuvering a little bit uncomfortable.
The 200-mah battery of the Vidius HD is rather small and gives about 6 minutes of flight time. It is a little disappointing but that’s what we for now in a drone of this size. The batteries cannot be swapped out either which is major let down as swappable batteries would have somewhat compensated the short battery life of a single battery. Recharging the battery also take up to 30-35 minutes.
If you don’t expect too much and only want to enjoy flying a drone without paying a lot of money, than the AerixVidius HD is an excellent choice and offers good value for your money. It is not as easy to fly as the larger drones but you get the hang of it after a little practice. The most exciting thing is Aerix VR Goggles which lets you have FPV of the drone flight and this definitely adds a new angle of drone flying, and the Vidius HD is the cheapest drone which offers this feature. Although there are some limitations like the non-swappable battery, no built-in camera stabilization, the Vidius HD still offers a nice way to have fun with FPV drone flying.