Gladius Mini 4K Underwater Drone Review

Is this the perfect drone for you?

[dropcaps type=’normal’ font_size=’32’ color=’#303030′ background_color=” border_color=”]U[/dropcaps]nderwater drones are a category of drones that are rapidly gaining popularity in the market. With a variety of drones available today, it is often difficult for consumers to choose the right product that suits their needs.
The Gladius Mini 4K Underwater Drone is marketed as the world’s 1st Intelligent Mini-size Underwater Drone.

The Gladius Mini Drone is manufactured by Chasing – Innovation Co, a company that has its headquarters in Shenzhen, China. The Gladius Mini was launched in the year 2018.

The highlight of this product is the stability that it offers considering how compact it is in size.

If you are thinking of buying the Gladius Mini 4K Underwater Drone, I would highly suggest that you read my in-depth review of this product before purchasing one!

I hope this review clarifies any doubts that you have in mind about this product.

By the end of this review, you will be well-versed with all the features and specifications of this small yet powerful underwater drone.

Who Is The Gladius Mini 4K Underwater Drone For?

The Gladius Mini 4K is designed to help you thoroughly explore the world underwater. If your goal is to explore cramped spaces and confined areas underwater, owning this mini drone is a great option for you.

This drone is specifically manufactured in a way that makes it suitable for both sport and leisure.

The Gladius Mini captures stunning underwater footage in 4K Ultra HD. If you are a water sports enthusiast, this drone is the ideal choice for dive photography.

For families that love to travel and explore the depths of the ocean, this drone can serve as the perfect companion for you to pack in your travel bags.

Businesses can also utilize this underwater drone for professional purposes.

The Gladius mini captures top-notch footage which makes it ideal for inspecting reservoirs and dams, aquaculture facilities, underwater archaeology, as well as water infrastructure.

Shipping companies can use this mini drone for hull, pier and dock inspections.

Since the Gladius Mini focuses on delivering high-quality footage of the diverse life undersea, it can rapidly become an oceanographer’s best friend!

Who Is The Gladius Mini 4K Underwater Drone Not For?

Despite the fact that this drone performs exceptionally well and definitely ranks high when it comes to capturing brilliant footage, there are a few factors that may act as a deterrent for some individuals –

  • Individuals who want an autonomous drone.
  • Individuals who are not keen on owning a lightweight, compact drone.
  • Individuals who are not highly passionate about going on regular underwater expeditions.

Features Of The Gladius Mini 4K Underwater Drone.

This drone is highly versatile in nature and has a bunch of remarkable features.

  • SMART DESIGN
    The Gladius Mini 4K is heavily inspired by nature. It’s gill-shaped design provides low resistance, drainage and stability that is unmatched.
  • Ultra-HD 4K Camera.
    The Ultra-HD 4K Camera that this mini drone comes with provides bright and vivid pictures of the underwater world.
  • True Color.
    The Gladius mini comes with an image restoration algorithm. This algorithm is capable of fixing color distortions and delivering images that are cleaner, brighter, and clearer.This is a great feature to have if your primary motivation behind owning a drone is underwater photography.
  • Highly Portable.
    At just 2.5 kg, this mini drone is extremely portable in nature. It can easily fit into a backpack and is not a hassle to carry around.The portability factor makes it the ideal device for family trips, explorations, and vlogging.
  • Intelligent Propulsion And Precision Hovering.
    This mini drone is equipped with three vertical propellers. The Gladius mini utilizes intelligent algorithms that ensure maximum stability of the drone in all directions.The mini can tilt, rise-up, dive down, hover, and turn with unmatched precision. It has two more thrusters that propel the drone at speeds up to 4 knots (2 m/s).The Gladius underwater drone is the world’s first mini drone that comes with 5 thrusters.
  • Tilt Lock That Is Totally Adjustable.
    This mini drone offers a ±45 ° adjustable tilt lock mode which makes it easy to find the perfect camera angles in water.It also means that you can navigate through obstacles underwater and track sea life resulting in unique videos and photographs with relative ease.The Gladius Mini can move fluidly in all directions which means easy access to every corner of the sea world!
  • Share Real-Time Videos.
    You can conveniently view and share live footage instantly on up to 3 wireless devices simultaneously.Along with this, the underwater drone also supports viewing of media on big screen TV or Monitor. However, this requires an HDMI port.
  • Depth-Lock Mode.
    The Gladius Mini 4K Underwater Drone is equipped with a single touch depth lock mode.This drone has an Intelligent Control Algorithm that helps you navigate freely.The One-Touch Depth-Lock mode that this drone comes with helps you capture exactly what you want by letting you hover at a precise depth of your choice.
  • Immersive VR.
    The Gladius Mini 4K comes with the Immersive VR feature.This feature enables you to enjoy a stunning VR experience and explore the depths of the sea without ever getting wet.
  • One Click Social Media Sharing.
    The Gladius Mini allows you to share all of your underwater videos and images to your desired social media platform with simply one quick click.You can also live-stream media instantly to any platform with a simple tap.

Specifications

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Dimensions

15” x 8.9” x 5.4” in (385 x 226 x 138 mm)

Weight

 5 lb (2.5 kg)

Battery Cycle

300+ times

Runtime

2 hours (Forward At Low Speed)
1.5 hours (Forward At Medium Speed)
40 minutes (Forward At High Speed)

Maximum Speed

4 Knots (2 m/sec)

Maximum Depth

330 ft (100 m)

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Maximum Effective Pixels

12 MP

Focus Length

4.0mm

Picture Format

JPEG / DNG

Lens

F3.0

ISO Range
100-3200
FOV
95°

Video Resolution

FHD:1920*1080 30Fps
FHD:1920*1080 60Fps
FHD:1920*1080 120Fps
FHD:3840*2160(4K) 30Fps
Video Birats
60M

Video Type

MP4

Storage

64G

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Weight (Without Tether)

3.3 lb (1.5 kg)

Battery

28.8Wh(2600mAh)

Maximum Run Time

≥8h (Depends on working method)

Battery Cycle

>300 times

 HDMI Output

Yes

Wi-Fi Range

<10 m

Break Strength

100 KG (980 N)

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IMU

3 Axis Gyro & Accelerometer & Compass.

Depth Sensor

< +/- 0.5m

Temperature Sensor

+/- 2℃

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Brightness

2 x 1200 Lumens

Color Temperature

4000K-5000k

CRI

80

Max Power

10 W

Dimming

Manual Dimming

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Working Frequency

2.4GHz (Bluetooth)

Working Temperature

-10℃~45℃

Wi-Fi Distance

<10m

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Charger

3A/12.6V

Drone Charging Time

1.5 h

Base Station Charging Time

1 h

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Buying Options Of The Gladius Mini 4K Submersible Underwater Drone.

The Gladius Mini 4K drone can be purchased in two packages –

  • The 50 m Package – $1,499. 00
  • The 100 m Package – $1,599.00

 

The only difference between the two packages lies in the length of the tether. The former comes with a 50m tether while the latter comes with a 100m tether.

Both of these versions are readily available on the Chasing website. They can also be ordered via Amazon.com

**The Warranty for the Gladius Mini 4K drone is 12 months from the date of sale.

The following teo confitions are not covered bt the warranty

  • Remote controller water damage.
  • Base station water damage.

What’s In The Box?

Read on to find out what accessories you can expect to receive along with your mini drone –

  • (1) Gladius Mini 4K Underwater Drone.
  • (1) Remote Controller Charging Cable (5V USB)
  • (1) Base Station
  • (1) 3A Power Cord
  • (1) Tether & Winder
  • (1) 3A Power Adapter
  • (1) Remote Controller
  • (4) Support Documents
  • (1) Phone/Tablet Mount
  • (1) Phone/Tablet Mounting Bracket
  • (2) Buoyancy Weights
  • (1) Absorbent Towel
  • (4) Tether Connector Caps
  • (3) Phone/Tablet Mounting Bracket Screw (M5*8)
  • (10) Gladius MiniBody Screws(M3*6)
  • (1) Backpack Standard
  • (10) Tether Connector O-Rings

FAQs

[qode_accordion style=”toggle”][qode_accordion_tab title=”Are there safety measures that need to be taken before using the device underwater?”]

Yes, there are certain safety measure that need to be taken by you which are as follows-

  • This drone is not to be used in pools with high chloride amounts or other chemicals to avoid corrosion.
  • The Gladius mini 4K ideally must be used in open water. The water quality should be relatively clear, and there should be no dense seaweed or weeds in the water body.
  • Refrain from turning on the drones LED lights before entering the water.
  • The drone motors are not supposed to be used out of water for more than two minutes or it can lead to failure of thruster motors.
[/qode_accordion_tab][qode_accordion_tab title=”Are there any precautions to be taken after using the drone?”]

Yes, it is necessary to follow certain measure after using the mini drone which are as follows-

  • Wash the drone body with clean, fresh water immediately after use and then dry with a towel.
  • Always store the mini drone in a cool area.
  • Make sure the battery is charged immediately if it goes below 25%
  • When the drone is sitting idle, keep the battery at 50-80% to help improve battery life.
[/qode_accordion_tab][qode_accordion_tab title=”Does the machine move forward or backward in 45°tilt mode or does it stay steady?”]

Yes, it moves a little.

  • Unfortunately, the current hardware technology is not capable of keeping the drone steady in 45° tilt mode.
  • You can maintain position of the drone by pushing reverse or forward on your joystick.
[/qode_accordion_tab][qode_accordion_tab title=”Can the battery of the Gladius mini be replaced or removed?”]
  • No. There is no way for you to remove the battery as the battery is built into the drone.
  • If your battery needs replacing, you have to get in touch with the service center directly or drop a mail on the website.
[/qode_accordion_tab][qode_accordion_tab title=”Questions About The Base Station.”]

1. Is the Base Station waterproof?

No, the base station is not waterproof.

2. How far can the Base Station be from the Wi-Fi?

Up to a maximum of 32 ft (10 meters) wireless Wi-Fi distance from the base station is supported.

3. What is the battery life of the Base Station?

The battery life of the base station is up to 6 hours, when it is charged fully.

4. What is the battery cycle of the Base Station?

The battery cycle is up to 300 charges.

[/qode_accordion_tab][qode_accordion_tab title=”Questions About The Remote Controller.”]

1. Is the Gladius Mini 4K remote controller waterproof?

No, the remote controller is not waterproof.

2. Can the remote controller hold an iPad or tablet?

Yes. It can comfortably hold an iPad or tablet that is up to 10.5 inch.

3. What is the wireless distance between the device and the controller?

The maximum wireless distance is 32 ft (10 meters) between the device and the controller.

4. What is the battery life of the remote controller?

You can easily use the remote for up to 5 hours.

5. How long does it take to fully charge the remote?

Around 1 hour is all you need to charge the remote.

6. What happens if the remote control does not connect to the phone or tablet?

  • If the remote control does not connect with any of your devices, there is a chance that your phone/tablet may be old or uncommon. In this case, you will have to connect the same to another smartphone / tablet.
  • For android devices, you need to ensure that all permissions are turned on when the Bluetooth connection screen pops up.
[/qode_accordion_tab][qode_accordion_tab title=”Questions About The Battery.”]

1. What is the battery life of the Gladius Mini 4K Underwater Drone?

  • In Use, Low Speed, Fixed Depth Mode, LED 50% – Will last up to 2 hours (still water)
  • In Use, Medium Speed, Fixed Depth Mode, LED 0% – Will last up to 1.5 hours (still water)
  • In Use, High Speed, Fixed Depth Mode, LED 0% – Will last up to 40 minutes (still water)

2. How long does it take to charge the Gladius Mini battery?

Approximately 2 hours.

3. Is the Gladius mini battery removable?

No, the battery cannot be removed.

4.Which charger is to be used for this drone?

Only a 3A/12.6V charger is to be used.

[/qode_accordion_tab][qode_accordion_tab title=”Questions About The Software.”]

1. Where can the Chasing mini app be downloaded?

The app is available for download on the iOS App Store / Google Play for Android.

2. Which devices support the app?

The App is supported by iOS 9.0 and Android 4.4 and above.

3. Does the Gladius Mini support live stream functions?

  • Yes, streaming on Facebook live and YouTube live is supported.
  • The ‘Go-Live’ button is located on the left side of the app interface.
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What I Like About The Gladius Mini 4K Underwater Drone

  • The first and the most obvious advantage of this mini drone is how compact and portable it is.    At just approximately 2.5kgs, this device is great for people who like to travel light.
  • The Gladius Mini app is also highly efficient and user-friendly.
  • The true color feature allows the user to have total control over color correcting the recorded footage and images. This feature is also extremely easy to use. All that needs to be done is simply adjust the sliders on the screen. This can also help you save time on post-production editing.
  • The build quality is sturdy and impressive considering the size of the drone.
  • A smart feature of this mini drone is that the 4K camera is built into the body of the drone. What this means for the user is that, the chances of the camera getting damaged are lower, should it bump into a reef or an object underwater.
  • The Gladius Mini comes with a lot of useful accessories. This is a good thing as many of its competitors do not provide as many complementary products. The backpack and the absorbent towel that you get with every order makes this product a great buy.

What I Don’t Like About The Gladius Mini 4K Underwater Drone!

  • The biggest disadvantage with this product is that it is tethered to the base. This drone is not ideal for individuals who prefer a fully autonomous drone.
  • The remote controller and the base station are not waterproof. These accessories cannot handle water and they are not water-resistant. This can become act as a huge hindrance and has the potential to interfere with your aquatic exploration.
  • The Gladius Mini 4K drone comes with a myriad of accessories that are required to make it run smoothly. Personally, I prefer a drone that does not require so many products simply to set it up.
  • The various parts that come with the drone like the base station, the remote control and the mini drone itself, all require regular charging to function properly. This can get extremely tiring and tedious for a lot of people. Some of these even require separate chargers. For me, this is a huge con of this mini drone.
  • The drone does not come with an underwater object detection feature. This means, it cannot detect any obstacles when in use. The drone is fully capable of bumping into objects that can cause damage to the mini drone.

Conclusion

The Gladius Mini 4K Underwater drone does have a bunch of advantages as well as disadvantages.

There are much better drones that are available in the market currently, however, this is a perfectly viable option for you if you live in a location where you do not have easy access to any other underwater drones.

The Gladius Mini is a fairly affordable, functional, and relatively fun device to use.

This Mini drone certainly does have a lot of potential, but we cannot ignore the fact that it also lacks some very important features.

Make sure you weigh the pros and cons of this mini drone before going ahead and investing in one.

In conclusion, this is a decent mini drone to go for only if you live very close to a water habitat and have some extra money to spend.