If you were lucky enough to get a drone recently, congratulations! They are a ton of fun and can allow to you to create some amazing content. Here at LemonDrone, we're constantly trying to empower drone users to have a better experience and create better drone videos for the rest of the world.
Part of that journey is equipping yourself with the best drone accessories. The drone we focus on most often is the DJI Phantom 3 because that's what we fly and also because it is the best “intro” level drone we've found (even with the price point).
Below is a full list of the best drone accessories for Phantom 3 in 2016. Many of these have been tested by our LemonDrone team, many have been recommended by our readers and other drone users.
Please share this post with anyone you know who has a DJI Phantom 3 – and happy flying!
Table of Contents (click to jump down):
- DJI Phantom 3 Hardshell Backpack
- DJI Phantom 3 Hardshell Carrying Case
- DJI Intelligent Flight Batteries
- 64GB MicroSD Memory Card
- PolarPro Filters
- Remote Control Metal Bracket
- iPhone/iPad Device Sunshade
1. DJI Phantom 3 Hardshell Backpack
While the regular drone carry pack is the best bet for most drone users, I personally opted for the hardshell backpack. IT IS AWESOME.
I travel a lot and found that having the DJI Phantom 3 hardshell backpack gave me 2 major benefits:
- It was small enough that I could bring it as a carry on for air travel
- It was tough enough that I could bring it on my back for hiking trips to get awesome drone video footage
This made my life immensely better. DJI even did a “free hardshell backpack” promotion during the 2015 Christmas season to get more people equipped.
Here's a picture of my using this hardshell drone backpack in Lake Tahoe, California:
And again in Hawaii (in Kaua'i on the Nepali Coast):
In fact, one of the reasons I was able to get such good footage was becuase I had this DJI Phantom 3 hardshell backpack – I wasn't worried about my Phantom 3 being damaged or anything like that.
I even fell into a stream and the backpack protected the drone from water (not recommended 🙂 )
It allowed me to take footage in remote locations like Kaua'i. Here's some raw footage I shot on this exact trip (you'll see the backpack in the first 10 seconds of the video)
The DJI Phantom 3 hardshell backpack is definitely one of the best drone accessories you can purchase. The specs include:
- 20 x 14 x 12 inches
- 4 pounds
- Black color
- Fits 4 batteries, remote, area for propellors
- Snug fitting hard styrofoam
Here's my setup:
Here's the official pic:
If you want to checkout the one I have, you can by clicking below:
DJI Phantom 3 hardshell backpack: (click here for latest price)
2. Hardshell Carrying Case
Without question, a drone carrying case will improve your experience more than virtually anything else. Whether you own a DJI Phantom 3, DJI Inspire or even a Parrot drone, you will quickly realize that getting the drone to the place you want to film isn't as easy as you may have expected 🙂
When your drone arrives, it will come in a large cardboard box like this (similar to Apple, but much larger):
And when you open it, you'll see this:
While this may look like an all inclusive case, it's not. It's kind of like buying a Macbook Pro and using the Apple box to take it to work. Yeah, no.
The best thing you can do is grab a drone carrying case. Most often these will come in plastic (very sturdy) packages so that you can travel with your drone easily. There are tons of manufacturers – one of the most highly reviewed is Microraptor because of their intuitive layout and great design.
Here's an image that shows this case:
And also how it can turn into a rolling drone case for traveling:
The Mircoraptor case includes:
- Inserts for DJI batteries
- Inserts for charger and cables
- Inserts for remote control
- Inserts for extra propellers.
NOTE: This case is specifically designed for the DJI Phantom 3. (Check out the latest price for this case here)
Or you can refer to this quick list for each popular model:
- DJI Inspire: GoProfessional Case (click here for latest price)
- Yuneec Q500: Yuneec (click here for latest price/results)
- Parrot AR 2.0: Quality Entertainment Products (click here for latest price)
A solid carrying case will improve your ability to take your drone with you, putting it at the top of our list of best drone accessories.
3. Extra DJI Intelligent Flight Batteries
DJI Phantom 3 batteries, aka “Intelligent Flight Batteries” are a whole new grade of drone battery. They use lithium ion technology to last much longer than traditional batteries (and also can be updated via firmware).
But, when you purchase your DJI Phantom 3, you'll only get one battery. That's a total of about 23 minutes (at best) of flight time.
You may not think that's a big deal but if you are trekking all the way out somewhere cool to shoot awesome drone video footage, you're going to be pretty bummed if you're done that quickly. That's why it's important to have an extra (or even a few extra) batteries with you fully charged.
Here's a picture of my current setup with both batteries (room for more):
You'll be able to use the charger that comes with your original drone to charge up all your new batteries. MAKE SURE you purchase these from a registered DJI manufacturer – using anything except certified DJI batteries can really mess up your drone. It could also be a big safety concern for others if something happens to the drone.
Here's a video that shows you what the batteries look like when you purchase them on their own and also how to install them into your Phantom 3:
- 4480mAh Lithium-Polymer
- Up to 23 Minutes Flying Time
- Integrated Power Management
- Slot-In Design
- Four LEDs Show Remaining Capacity
- 6.2 x 3.9 x 2.8 inches
- 13 ounces
If you want to pick up a new DJI Intelligent Flight Battery, click below:
DJI Intelligent Flight Battery: (click here for latest price)
4. 64GB MicroSD Memory Card
When you get your DJI Phantom 3 out of the box, you'll notice that it comes with a 16GB microSD memory card. While that's nice, it's not going to cut it for anyone shooting in 1080 and DEFINITELY not enough for someone filming in 4K.
As a point of reference, the Phantom 3 Professional shooting at 4K has a maximum bitrate of 60Mbit/second (aka 60,000,000 bits per second) which is about 7.5MB/second.
That means your “stock” 16GB microSD card will hold about 36 minutes of 4K video.
Yes, you could just swap out your memory card every time you charge your battery, but think about how much of a pain that is! Especially if you've invested in a few more intelligent flight batteries, the last thing you'll want to do is download all your footage, format your card, then get ready to fly again if you're in the middle of some incredible sunset.
The best solution is to invest in a 64GB microSD card. BUT – make sure you have the following specs (as explained by DJI):
- Maximum storage is 64GB
- Class 10 or USH-1 Rated (meaning it can handle data being written at 10MB/s)
A lot of drone owners will tell you to get one of the microSD cards that can write at 95MB/s but that's overkill in my opinion. Remember – the Phantom 3 can only write at 7.5MB/s.
More than anything, this will just make your life easier AND it will ensure that you don't lose precious footage…or run out of space mid flight (that's happened to me before).
The best microSD card for Phantom 3 is SanDisk Ultra 64GB microSDXC UHS-I Card (with Adapter):
You'll also want to make sure you have a microSD adapter, which is conveniently included with this SanDisk card. The reason you want the adapter is so that you can easily connect to your computer (vs having to use the cable directly from your Phantom 3 which then you'll have to turn on with the battery, etc).
The adapter looks like this:
Eject the microSD card from your Phantom 3, plug into the adapter and download to your computer.
FYI the microSD card is located here on the P3:
It's a very small investment to get a 64GB microSD card for your drone and I would highly recommend it. You can purchase the official SD card by clicking the link below:
SanDisk Ultra 64GB microSDXC Adapter: (click here for latest price)
5. PolarPro Filters
Yes, these are the same guys you saw on Shark Tank landing a massive deal, but after picking up some of their filters I can see why.
As you start doing more aerial video and aerial photography with your Phantom 3, you will be faced with a multitude of weather conditions. More specifically, you'll learn that different days require different filters to navigate the light.
You probably know that many photographers use polarizing filters with their lenses in order to “strip” the excessive light and reflections from their shots. Why not do the same with your drone camera?
I took a gamble and picked up some PolarPro filters before a trip up to Lake Tahoe, California last year. It was SUPER sunny outside so I added the polarizing filter to my camera.
Here's the video I made:
Pretty sweet, right? You can really tell how much it affects the colors and the water clarity. PolarPro also offers an ND4 and ND8 filter with the pack (ND stands for Neutral Density) which are used to filter out more light when it's really bright (ND4 for sunny days, ND8 for really sunny days).
The guys over at DroneNerds did a great job with their video that shows ALL the different types of filters you can pick up from PolarPro. Watch it here:
One of the biggest challenges with the PolarPro filters is being able to screw them on and off. I made this video to show you that it's actually not very hard at all:
Once you start using these filters you'll wonder how you ever filmed on sunny days before. Your best bet is to pick up the three pack:
Which will come with some nice satin bags like this:
I'd highly recommend these filters and am happy to put them on our list of best drone accessories for Phantom 3. If you want to purchase the filters, click below:
PolarPro DJI Phantom 3 Filter 3-Pack: (click here for latest price)
6. Remote Control Holder Monitor Display Bracket
This is one that I haven't personally picked up yet but have talked to enough people that have. It's especially helpful if you are using an iPad or iPad mini with your remote because those weight a lot more than an iPhone.
Here's what the remote looks like when it arrives:
You see the bracket is actually made of white plastic. It works, but it's certainly not very strong when you're holding a large device on top.
That's why one of the best drone accessories for Phantom 3 is a metal remote control holder monitor display bracket. It can provide much needed stability and sturdiness that will make flying your drone a lot easier.
You will simply replace the plastic bracket with a metal one like this:
The drone users I know who've purchased this LOVE it. I'll probably get one soon too based on their recommendations.
If you're interested in purchasing a metal bracket, click below:
DJI Phantom 3 Remote Control Holder Monitor Display Bracket & Holder Mount Adapter CNC Silver: (click here for latest price)
No matter where you are shooting your next drone video, you'll have to deal with glare on your iPhone or iPad screen. Even with brightness turned WAY up, you'll still have a hard time seeing what you're filming. That's a problem.
Sunshades help remove that glare and provide you with an awesome flying experience.
Here's a photo of what they look like:
It's important to note that these sunshades can be fickle depending on your exact device size. The product notes from Anbee's page are:
- Compatible Transmitters: Dji Phantom Series Phantom 3 & Inspire 1, 2nd Generation Sunshade, Enlarged USB Cable Hole
- 9.7″ Sunshade fits iPad Air Air 2 other Table with 9.7″ Screen
- 7.9″ Sunshade fits iPad Mini Mini 2 Mini 3 and other Tablet with 7.9″ Screen
- 5.5″ Sunshade fits iPhone 5, 6, 6 Plus, Samsung Galaxy S5 S6 and other Cellphone within 5.5 inches Screen
If you do a lot of outdoor drone filming, this could be a really great addition. If you want to learn more, click the link below:
Anbee DJI Phantom 3 Inspire 1 Transmitter Tablet Sunshade Phone Sun Hood: (click here for latest price)
8. Other notable accessories
Here's a list of other notable accessories that I've heard people trying but I do not have enough evidence that they are the best drone accessories for Phantom 3. You should check them out, though, and see if it fits your goals. I'll keep adding to this list as I hear more and try more!
DJI Propeller Guards
- DJI Part 2 Propeller Guard – Safety Cord – DJI Warranty
- Protects your Phantom from prop damage
- Lightweight and durable
- Sized for use with 9″ propellers
- Includes safety cord to prevent objects from entering spaces between guards
DJI Phantom 3 Prop Guard: (click here for latest price)
Thanks for reading! Do you have any other drone accessories for Phantom 3 that we should include? Let us know on the Facebook page.
Please share this post with someone who has a Phantom 3 drone!