With the Mavic and the Inspire 2 and improvements to the Osmo line, DJI stayed pretty busy last fall. They even announced their new CrystalSky monitors back in November, but they've moved from announcement to reality at CES this year.

While many of DJI's CES announcements are more consumer-focused, such as a new silver color for the Osmo and a Chinese New Year's themed special edition of the Phantom, the CrystalSky monitors are aimed squarely at the heart of working filmmakers. Giving users their first peek at the release models, as well as launching a product page on their site, we now have a better understanding of what these monitors have to offer.

Dji_crystlsky_temperature_optimizedDJI CrystalSky monitor designed for use down to -4° FCredit: DJI

These monitors offer a peak brightness of 2000 cd/m² (in the high brightness 7.85"; the normal brightness 5.5" and 7.85" are still a strong 1000 cd/m²). This should stand up well in comparison with most HDR monitors currently hitting film sets, many of which advertise peak brightness in the 1500-2000 range. DJI is targeting these not for HDR but primarily for the ease of visibility in high brightness outdoor environments.

Considering that many drone pilots use phones or tablets as monitors—which tend to land around 550 cd/m²—the new monitors will offer images four times as bright. When working outside on a bright day this should make operating more flexible, with the pilot able to spend more time focused on what they see on the screen without worrying about whether or not the sun is going to glare their image.

Screen_shot_2017-01-06_at_4DJI CrystalSky on a RemoteCredit: DJI

The monitors come with DJI's custom DJI Go flight control software built in, providing "full access to... aircraft parameter adjustment, camera control, footage management, and playback.” Specs appear to only indicate an HDMI output but not an input. Hopefully, in the future we'll see a version of these monitors with HDMI in, since they seem like they could go head to head against some stiff competition in the onboard monitor/recorder space.

No final word on pricing or ship date. For more info check out the CrystalSky page at DJI.com.

Tech Specs:

  • 2000 cd/m²
  • 7.85" and 5.5" sizes available
  • Dual MicroSD slots
  • H.264 or H.265 recording
  • 4k to 30fps in H.264, 60fps in H.265
  • Low latency optimized playback
  • 4°F (-20°C) to 104°F (40°C) operating temperature range