DJI Spark vs Phantom 3: Which One You Should Buy?

Updated on: November 5, 2020

Both the Spark and the Phantom 3 are outstanding drones, but they differ significantly from each other. The Spark is one of DJI's newest drones, which has a range of unique features, such as its small size and the ability to fly with hand gestures.

The Spark is a small, lightweight, easy - to - fly the drone. The Phantom 3 Standard is a full - size drone especially for the photographer of the budding aerial. A photographer needs Best Camera as well as the best system configuration to create some really good pictures. If you are a photographer, then you should also use eGPU for portability. Let's see where these both drones stand out in head-on comparison.

Camera Specs

The stronger the camera, the clearer the images and videos. With regard to still shots, each camera is almost the same, weighing in at 12 Megapixels. Only the Phantom 3 4 K and 3 Pro could record in 4K. Next is the standard Phantom 3 and the Advanced Phantom 3. Both can hit 2.7 K, while the Spark finally arrives at 1080p.

Now, while 1080p is still deemed to be HD. A camera that can only shoot at this rate becomes actually outdated. The same can be said about 2.7 K video as well. For skilled professional and semi-professional filmmakers, 4 K is by far better quality and importance.

Video FormatMP4MP4, MOV (MPEG-4 AVC/H.264)


The difference between the two drones in battery and flight time is quite significant. The DJI Spark comes with an 11.4 V, 1480 mAh Lipo battery that roughly translates into approximately 16 minutes of flight time.

Phantom 3 is capable of flying much longer. Thanks to its 15.2V, 4480 mAh battery, the Phantom 3 can hold about 25 minutes of flying time. You can buy extra battery packs to help enhance your flight time if you really want to fly either drone for longer.

Maximum Flight Distance

One of the most important aspects of a drone is the maximum possible flight distance of the drones because the maximum range will evaluate how much liberty you have in the sky. When used with a smartphone or tablet, the DJI Spark has a range of 100 meters. Although you can expand it by a transmitter to about 2 km.

The Phantom 3 4K, however, has a range of 1200 meters out of the box which, when piloted without a transmitter, is clearly 10x that of the Spark.

Size & Design

The DJI Spark is obviously the smaller of the two, weighing just 300 g and measuring a diagonal distance of just 170 mm all without the propellers. The Phantom 3 4 K, while on the other hand, weighs nearly 1300 g without the propellers and measures 350 mm diagonally.


Phantom 3 4 K and Spark also have room for adding a micro SD card in terms of storage. This means that on both drones you can have up to 64 GB of onboard storage. If you choose to record 4 K video on a micro SD card, however, make sure it is at least a 10 micro SD card.

Maximum Speed

Phantom 3 4 K clocks at 35.8 mph top speed, descends at 6.7 mph and climbs at 11.2 mph. Under the best conditions, the DJI Spark tends to be a notch slower clock in at 31 mph. Although it goes up and down at 6.7 mph, comparable to the Phantom 3.

Intelligent Flight Modes

Intelligent flight modes are a set of independent pilot features that no user input is required. Usually, these features allow the user to focus on recapturing aerial videos and photos all without actually actively piloting the drone.

Also, the DJI Spark design features a gesture recognition mode that is not accessible on the Phantom 3 because the Phantom 3 is a bit older than the Spark.

Price & Extras

At the moment you can buy the DJI Spark for $300 less than the Phantom 3 4K, however, that’s thanks to a special promotion. Generally, expect to find a $200 or so price difference between the two.

Obstacle Avoidance

High - tech sensors from Spark can easily detect objects up to 16 feet way ahead. Those include obstacles such as mesh, power lines, and fences connecting chain. This actually makes it as hard as nails. Sadly, this truly dedicated obstacle avoidance system is missing in the Phantom 3 range.


The Phantom 3 range has a range of flight and camera buttons controllers as well as two large steering sticks. The Spark is designed to operate with hand movements and the DJI app.

These techniques work pretty well, but a lot more fun and functional is manual flight. The increased range is the main advantage of having a controller for Spark. Also, the controller allows then you really to enable sports mode so the drone can hit its 31-mph top speed.


To determine their position, all drones use GPS and GLONASS, so no variation here. Each model can connect to Russian and American satellites, making coverage and accuracy at a high level. Don't forget the position of your vision.

With the exception of the Phantom 3 Standard, all come with a range of sensors to help determine their position near the ground or in areas without a GPS signal. This enables them to maintain high precision of the hover without excessive displacement.

Head on comparison

SparkPhantom 3
Size and portabilityBetter gimbal
Ease-of-useBetter video options
Forward Obstacle AvoidanceFaster and more stable
Gesture control, Active Track, and new flight modesRange
Longer range (with optional controller)Range (vs. base model Spark)
Newer cameraLonger flight time

Final Verdict

Lastly, are you someone who just wants video footage of the highest quality or would you prefer a more portable and robust drone? If the answer is the best option is the former than the Phantom 3 Pro.

And If you can't afford it, the Phantom 3 4 K will go a little cheaper. If you are more concerned with portability and avoidance of obstacles, we recommend the Spark. It lacks the best camera, the fastest speed, or the longest flight time.

It's a hard and affordable drone, though. If Your budget is really low, then you can go with Aosenma CG035 Double GPRS drone. The Phantom 3 Standard is generally not recommended. It's rather dated and is no longer made by DJI. While many affordable new and second - hand drones are still being sold on Amazon, we reckon you could get a much longer and better lasting drone by expending a little more.