Review of the SwellPro SPRY+ Underwater Drone
The SwellPro SPY+ is a waterproof drone with a long flight time and great photo and video quality. It also has a compact size and a great price. In this SwellPro SPY+ underwater drone review, we’ll see how it performs when it’s submerged and if it’s worth buying.
SwellPro SPRY+: The Overview
SwellPro Spry+ is a waterproof orange drone that records in 4K video quality and can land and fly in the water. It is a consumer-friendly, waterproof drone that’s suitable for a range of users. It’s not the most advanced drone on the market, but it does a good job and provides solid value for money. It’s portable and can take high-quality video and photos underwater.
The drone is waterproof, but it’s not fully submergible. It can be submerged for about 15–17 minutes at a depth of 4 meters.
SwellPro SPRY+ technical specifications
- 3600mAh LiHV battery
- Time to charge: approximately 90 minutes
- Camera: 4K video, 12MP still images.
- Flight time: approximately 15-17 minutes.
- The maximum flight range from the remote control is 800m (2625 ft).
- The maximum flight altitude is 200 m (656 ft).
- The maximum flight speed is 18 m/s.
- Maximum ascension speed – 3 m/s
- GPS/GLONASS positioning
- Hovering accuracy is +/-0.5m.
- 10 m/s wind resistance
- Temperature range: -10°C to 40°C.
- Surface buoyancy – watertight level
- Dimensions: 233.5 x 249 x 90 mm
- Weight: 538 g (without the battery).
What’s inside the box?
The package includes everything you need to fly in a zippered carrying case with a handle and attachment points for a shoulder strap (not included).
The Spry+ drone is revealed when the lid is unzipped.
Located below the divider is the remote control, two antennas, charger, battery charging cable, battery, micro USB cable, two sets of propellers, wrench, two replacement switch covers, two replacement GPS membrane covers, and a user manual.
SwellPro SPRY+: Design and features
Compared to other drones, the Spry+ doesn’t have a typical appearance. The body of this creature is bright orange and has soft, slightly rubbery skin.
A large, water-resistant battery compartment is located on the top of the enclosure and is secured by a twist lock.
In the battery compartment, the rectangular battery is snugly fitted. The battery is so snuggly that it has a ribbon handle for pulling it out when it needs to be charged.
The battery compartment has a microSD card slot in the bottom center. The Spry+ does not come with a memory card, so you’ll have to buy one separately.
A micro USB connector and two other connectors are also found inside the battery compartment. I’m not entirely sure what the USB connector is used for, since there’s no mention of it in the included user guide.
The Swellpro Spry+ drone’s power button is built into the battery cover, and the GPS module is visible on the back as a round knob protruding from the back end.
A short antenna can be seen on the back of the drone when you flip it over. There is also a WiFi symbol below the small button. That is the WiFi button. When you want to use the mobile app instead of the controller that comes with the drone, press this button.
There’s also the camera, which is enclosed in plastic. You can see scratches on the plastic cover if you look closely. I will discuss this later on.
As it has its own color display, the controller allows you to control the Spry+ drone without your phone. Additionally, the controller has two thumb joysticks and buttons on the shoulders that are used to adjust the camera angle up or down, as well as buttons for switching modes, triggering the follow-me function, and starting or stopping the video or image capture.
The controller comes with a built-in battery that can be charged with a micro USB cable.
SwellPro SPRY+: Apps
Two apps are available for this drone. Various camera and drone settings can be customized using the SwellCam2 app.
This app requires you to press the WiFi button on the bottom of the Spry+ in order to pair it with the drone.
The app will not let you fly the drone, but you can still take photos and videos with it. I’m not sure how much use it is when it is on the ground.
When the dedicated remote control also pairs with the drone and has a screen, it is annoying to have to use a separate app to make adjustments to the camera’s settings. As the remote doesn’t have a touch screen, you’ll need to use the buttons and joysticks to navigate a menu of options to customize your settings.
The SPRY app allows you to control the drone.
The app was not able to pair with the Spry+, so I was unable to test the special features such as one-button landing. I tested the Spry+ using the remote control that came with it.
Performance of the SwellPro SPRY+
At least, in my opinion, it is more convenient to use a dedicated remote control than to use your phone. In the case of the SwellPro, both the drone and the controller are waterproof. In other words, you can drop it in the lake or ocean and it won’t damage it.
Having read the user manual, watched a few videos on YouTube, charged the battery, and performed the calibration, I was ready to take flight. My first flight lasted about 30 minutes. It felt like just seconds. The drone lifted off the ground and immediately flipped over and spun in the gravel of my driveway.
After a few choice words, I walked over and picked it up, only to utter several more colorful words when I noticed that the polycarbonate dome over the lens was scratched multiple times. I guess the silver lining is that you can buy a replacement dome for $19.
Following flights were less problematic, although the drone sometimes seemed to have its own mind.
The Spry+ is fun to fly, but hovering in place isn’t always stable, sometimes it will drift. In addition, the drone is fast, so you must be careful when controlling it since it reacts quickly to joystick input. As you fly forward, stop, or fly backward, the front of the drone with the camera will rock up and down as it flies.
It might also feel a little shaky due to the wind. It made me happy that the dome over the camera didn’t look spotty or splotchy with water droplets when we took off from the water.
|What we liked||What should be improved on|
|The ability to land and take off from the water.||Adding obstacle avoidance|
|It comes with dedicated remote control.||batteries that last longer.|
|The package includes a storage case.||Charge the drone’s battery without removing it.|
|Flying is easy.||Instead of special apps, allow customization of settings via the remote control.|
Finally, a few thoughts
My first waterproof drone was the SwellPro Spry+. This makes flying over water a breeze. While flying the Spry+ is fairly simple, the 15–17 minute flight time does seem short compared to other drones in this price range. Due to its high price range, this drone does not have an obstacle avoidance feature, which I consider mandatory for a drone in this price range. If you need a drone that can land on or take off from water, then you should definitely consider the Spry+. However, if that’s not an important feature to you, make sure you understand the shortcomings and do your research before you shell out almost $1000.