Performance
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Performance

Sony says the Airpeak S1 has the fastest acceleration in the industry, going from 0-80 km/h (0-50 mph) in just 3.5 seconds, compared with 5.0 seconds for the DJI Inspire 2, and has a maximum speed of 90 km/h (56 mph). Notably, Sony cites these numbers with ‘no payload attached’, meaning no cameras or gimbals were attached to the drones. Still, in a side-by-side video the company shared at a press briefing, the S1 easily out-accelerated the Inspire 2.

Sony also claims the S1 can remain stable in winds up to 72 km/h (45 mph), which is impressive. It’s possible to see this in a wind tunnel test (YouTube link) the company performed at the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). The S1 definitely benefits from its large 17-inch rotors and its ability to pitch up to 55º in flight.

The elephant in the room is flight time. With the gimbal and camera attached, the S1 can only stay in the air for 12 minutes. That may not seem long compared to many consumer models, but in a commercial setting, it may be enough time to get in the air, shoot a take, then return to base while everything gets set up again for the next take – which isn't so bad if you have a bank of batteries on hand to swap out.