Brain Farm, based in Jackson, Wyoming, recently unveiled what it called “the latest weapon” in its arsenal of cinematic technology. The weapon comprises a Phantom Flex4K high-speed digital camera (which costs $99,000 to $159,900, depending on configuration) attached to a juiced-up version of an Aerigon drone ($50,000).
That costly rig fulfilled Brain Farm CEO Curt Morgan’s dream of getting superb slow-motion images from the sky. “I’ve stayed up at night for five years trying to figure out how to fly a Phantom on a drone,” Morgan says in the company’s video of the first footage from the super drone. “The problem was it was too heavy.”
The Phantom Flex4K camera, which can shoot more than 1,000 frames per second at 4K resolution, weighs 14 pounds without a lens or viewfinder. To get it off the ground, Brain Farm got help from Swedish drone manufacturer Intuitive Aerial to enhance an Aerigon drone with 40 percent more power, according to Popular Mechanics. The finished product was a six-armed, 12-propeller drone capable of lifting a 30-pound setup, which included the camera and a special cradle.
The resulting slow-motion footage of an SUV and pickup truck plowing their way through muddy water is a sight to behold. Droplets of mud have never looked so graceful.