Equipped with a 14 megapixels Fish-eye camera, the Parrot Bebop Drone can record videos and take 180° pictures of an outstanding quality for a leisure drone.
In this tutorial, we will learn to make better use of the drone photographic capabilities. For this, no need to be an expert in image editing, the techniques demonstrated in this article are accessible to everybody. All you need to start is a Bebop Drone and Photoshop or Lightroom CC.
DNG, the best format to make high quality pictures
To start making aerial photography with a Bebop , you must first select “Photo mode” in the application settings.
How to activate the RAW (DNG) Photo Mode
1) Connect your smartphone or tablet to the Bebop Drone and open Freeflight 3
2) On the piloting interface, click on the “Settings” icon
3) Swipe to the left to navigate through the different settings until you see the “Recording Settings”
4) Select the “Photo Mode” and “DNG”
There are 3 photo formats available:
– JPEG: the JPEG mode takes a screenshot of the video stream at a 1920×1080 pixels resolution. The image quality is slightly degraded because of the video image stabilization that tends to remove sharpness and accentuate edges. In this mode, you can quickly take pictures (shutter delay is very short) that are not distorted and with a light file size.
– JPEG 180°: the JPEG 180° takes a fish eye shot with a 180° FOV at a 4096×3072 pixels resolution. This mode offers small editing possibilities.
– DNG(RAW) : This mode takes a raw fish eye photo with a 180° FOV at a 4096×3072 pixels resolution in a DNG format. This mode allows a professional grade editing using softwares like Photoshop or Lightroom.
In order to get the best shot possible with your Bebop Drone, it is highly recommended to use the RAW (DNG) photo mode.
Note: In the Photo mode, the video no longer records automatically as you take off. You have to click on the “Record” icon manually in order to start recording.
Pictures taken in the RAW (DNG) mode takes a bit of time to trigger and being processed. It is recommended waiting at least 4sec before taking another shot.
Edit your pictures like a Pro!
Since the 10/10/2015 update of the Adobe Creative Cloud suite, the Bebop’s lens profile has been added to Photoshop and Lightroom CC.
This allows you to easily correct the lens distortion without needing any particular photo editing skills! Do not edit your original DNG pictures directly on Photoshop/Lightroom as the source file may be altered.
Always make a copy for editing in a separate folder first.
1) First, make sure that you have the latest version of Photoshop CC / Lightroom CC, you can check the available updates in Adobe Creative Cloud.
2) Then, select the DNG picture you wish to edit and open with Photoshop or Lightroom.
3) A window named “Camera Raw 9.2” will automatically pop up.
4) Head to the “Lens Profile Correction” section.
5) Check the box named “Activate Lens Profile Correction”
The Bebop’s Lens profile will automatically be selected in order to correct the distortion
6) If the automatic correction is too important, you can reduce the correction amount by moving the cursor under “Distortion”. In general, a distortion rate of 70% usually gives the best results.
To go further…
7) You can manually adjust the distortion settings in the “Manual” tab of the Lens correction section.
8) Finally, you can go back to the “Basic” section in order to finish your editing by changing all the basic parameters: exposure, contrast, saturation etc…
9) You’re satisfied with your job? Great! You can now click on “Open image”. The edited photo will now be opened and all you have to do is save it!
Congratulations! You now have a picture that is fully using the 14 Megapixels camera of the Bebop.
It’s your turn now!
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