http://www.quadhangar.com/dji-phantom-3-quadcopter-review/You have started flying your DJI Phantom and explored every inch of your house and surroundings with it and you are now ready to look further afield. Perhaps you want to take it downtown for a different perspective on city life, or maybe just to your local national park to experience life as the birds do.
Either way, to get your drone there in one piece it is going to need some protection, and today we are going to look at cases for this very popular consumer quad.
*** Edit: Our Phantom 4 review can be found here and we’ll soon update this guide to include cases for the Phantom 4 as well. Subscribe to our newsletter to be notified when it is updated***
What’s the best travel case for your DIJ Phantom?
The type of case you require very much depends on how far and ultimately how you plan to travel. For those wishing to hike up a mountain, a small (and often cheaper) backpack case may be the right choice; however, if you are planning on hiking some rugged terrain, something a little more sturdy may be necessary. This is really a case of personal preference but for now, we will have a look at some of the more popular cases for sale to help you make up your mind.
Armor Hard Case
Top of the range in both price and weight is Armor’s DJI Phantom 2 Vision Plus Hard Case ($238); 100% US made, high end military spec and virtually indestructible you get some serious bang for your buck with this case.
Designed for the serious Phantom user, this case is waterproof up to 3 feet, features a pressure equalization ring making it safe to travel in the hold of an airplane and it has space for every accessory you can think of, including extra batteries for both the Phantom (and the GoPro) and chargers.
With this case you can be sure that your quad is as safe and secure as it could possibly be. On the downside, however, it weighs in at a hefty 14.1lbs on its own and, with dimensions of 24.5 x 9.9 x 19.6 inches, it surpasses the carry-on limit for flights so may not be the most convenient for all users.
Red Rock Carrying Case
[easyazon_link identifier="B00JSZI5AK" locale="US" tag="quadhangarcom-20"][/easyazon_link]Up next is the Red Rock Carrying Case for DJI Phantom 2 Vision+ / Vision / Phantom 2 With Gimbal($174.99, price at the time of writing, subject to change).
Much lighter at only 9.6 lbs and in a more accessible price range for the casual enthusiast, this case may be just what you are looking for. Compatible with the DJI Phantom Vision 2+, DJI Phantom vision 2 and DJI Phantom 2 with Gimbal (H3-2D or H3-3D), this case has slots for all the usual accessories and does not require you to remove the Quad blades for it to fit.
It is simple, stylish and affordable. A good choice if you simply want somewhere safe to keep your Quad out of the hands of kids of pets and aren’t traveling too far.
However, the foam inside the lid appears cheap and the glue quality not so good. The hinges seem a little flimsy, meaning you certainly wouldn’t want to and this over to airport baggage handlers with their tendency to sit on anything. Furthermore, this will only fit the out-of-the-box landing gear legs; with any upgrade or extensions to this, you are going to need to do some home customizing. Perfectly possible but annoying.
In conclusion, we find this to be a good all round case for the casual user, but a more professional or well-traveled user may find that this does not meet their requirements.
DronePacks Backpack (dicontinued)
At the higher end but still affordable of the backpack carry cases is DronePacks Backpack for DJI Phantom 3, DJI Phantom 2 Vision, Phantom 2 Vision Plus and DJI Phantom 2 with Gimbal H3-3D ($199).
Touted as the ultimate portable carry case (DronePacks’ words), this lightweight (6.2lbs) stylish backpack fits the Phantom 2 Vision, Phantom 2 Vision + and the Phantom 2 with H3-3D Gimbal. Whilst not the smallest of the portable carriers with dimensions of 22 x 8 x 15.5 inches, it is still small enough to fit into overhead luggage and uses the space it has well to hold a range of accessories, and with external pockets for anything extra (manuals, power cables) it should fit everything you need. To boot, this sturdy, highly durable case comes with a lifetime warranty on any manufacturing defects. It is also easily converted into a duffle bag with hideaway zipper pockets for the shoulder and waist straps.
So what are the disadvantages? Given the size of the bag, space is of course at a premium and as such this cannot fit quite the range of accessories some of the larger carry cases can. Neither can you keep the weight down and provide the same level of protection. This probably isn’t a case for storing your expensive model in a busy household, as it is too easily accessible. However, if what you are looking for is a simple, lightweight and sturdy solution for traveling with your drone, you would struggle to find fault with this.
Foxnovo Universal Waterproof Backpack
Finally at the lower end of the spectrum and likely more for the casual enthusiast is the Foxnovo Universal Waterproof Backpack Carrying Case Bag for DJI Phantom 1 Phantom 2 Vision Vision+ FC40 ($67.99).
Made from durable, waterproof nylon and compatible with the DJI Phantom 2 Vision+, Phantom 2 Vision, Phantom 2, Phantom 1 and Phantom FC40, this case is affordable to all budgets, and whilst not particularly stylish is certainly highly portable, comfortable to wear and extremely lightweight at 2.7 lbs.
Given its dimensions, space inside for accessories is limited but it does come with external pockets for extra storage.
However, as you would expect given the price range, this case has numerous quality disadvantages over its more expensive competitors and it is unlikely to satisfy even moderate users. The construction is pretty low quality, with numerous reports of straps detaching, and with space at such a premium there is no room for the props and these must be room. Whilst the padding does provide some protection, we still wouldn’t recommend dropping it on the floor. Basically for the price it’s ok, but in general we recommend spending a bit more to get something a lot more sturdy.
The seller confirmed that this backpack is not suitable for Phantom 3.
So what is the best travel solution for the DJI Phantom?
We think it’s a backpack that has not been mentioned here so far as we thought it deserved more attention than just a quick glance. It’s the Think Tank Helipak backpack. Check our review of the Think Tank Helipak backpack here (that fits all Phantom series models, including the Phantom 4) to find out more.
QuadHangar’s Top Three DJI Phantom cases
Armour Hard Case
Red Rock Carrying Case
|Functionality||Travel, airport, storage||Storage and transportation||Storage, carry on, transportation|
|Case type||Carry case||Carry case||Backpack|
|Compatible models||Phantom 2 Vision+, no Phantom 3 support||Phantom 2, Vision,
Vision+, with Gimbal
(H3-2D or H3-3D), Phantom 3 requires adjustments in the foam
|Phantom 2, Vision,
Vision+, with Gimbal
H3-3D, Phantom 3
|Dimensions||24.5’’ x 9.9’’ x 19.6’’||23″ X 14″ X 9.5″||22″ x 15.5″ x 8″|
|Weight||14.1 lbs||9.6 lbs||6.2 lbs|
|Waterproof?||Yes to 3 feet.||No||No|
|Price||Check on Amazon||Check on Amazon||Check on Amazon|
So there you have it, this is just a brief look at some of the many options currently on the market. Hopefully, we have given you some idea of what to look out for, whether you are planning a quad accompanied trip across Alaska or simply to show off to your friends in the park. Don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter (in the right sidebar) to stay up to date on the latest quadcopter news and reviews.