The Caddx Vista Air unit was the lightest DJI HD camera/transmitter you can put in your drone, I said ‘was’, because they just released an even lighter camera, the Caddx Nebula! However, I am quite disappointed!
- Still on the fence? Here is my DJI FPV System Review
- A list of DJI FPV System upgrades and accessories you don’t want to miss
Where to Buy Nebula?
Update (March 2021): There’s a new version, Nebula Pro.
Nebula + Vista Combo
Only Nebula Nano Camera
Only Nebula Micro Camera
What is the Caddx Nebula?
The Caddx Nebula is basically a lighter and smaller camera replacement for the original DJI camera. It works with both DJI Air Unit and Caddx Vista.
You can either purchase the Vista with the Nebula pre-installed, or you can just get the Nebula camera separately and install it in your existing Air Unit by yourself.
The Caddx Nebula Nano camera weighs 4.5g, while the original DJI camera weighs about 8.5g, so you save about 4g by using the Nebula Nano. it’s also smaller, with a form factor of 14x14mm, The Nebula Nano also comes with a 19x19mm bracket so you can mount it like a micro camera if you want.
There is also a Nebula Micro version, which is slightly bigger (micro size 19x19mm).
But the interesting thing is that it has both digital and analogue video outputs, which means you can use it with your traditional analogue VTX as well. While having their own version, Caddx is also releasing an Eachine edition of the micro.
Apart from size and weight, the other major differences between the Nebula and original DJI camera are:
- The Nebula can only do 16:9 wide screen, no 4:3 due to the the sensor’s 16:9 native aspect ratio
- The diagonal FOV (field of view) of the Nebula is 150°, which is the same as the DJI’s, but since the Nebula has a longer aspect ratio, it has smaller vertical FOV and so you will see less from top to bottom
- According to the manufacturer, Nebula has better low light performance and wider dynamic range
- They disabled Low Latency / High Quality mode option when using the Nebula – it just uses default mode (720p 60fps)
- 32ms latency – which is slightly higher than what we have with the original camera in the Low Latency mode (28ms), but slightly lower than that in High Quality mode (40ms)
Here is a great video comparing the new Nebula and the original DJI camera by Fungineers.
At first glance, the Nebula looks like a completely different camera in the footage.
They didn’t lie about the better WDR, you can see more detail in the shadow. However the Nebula image looks considerably worse honestly, it’s almost like analogue now! The image is very much washed out, very blurry and over-sharpened at the same time. It tends to “fog up” when flying in shady areas or facing a light source due to the over-reacting WDR algorithm.
Based on all the footage I’ve seen and reactions from people, I really can’t recommend the Nebula, at least for now.
The point of the DJI FPV system is fanatic image quality, and the point of the Nebula is weight saving. but it’s not doing either thing right. For a mere 5-gram reduction, you lose so much image quality and it’s not adjustable, it’s almost like flying analogue again. You are also stuck in 16:9 and High Quality mode (no 120 fps low latency).
If you really want a light weight setup, I think it makes more sense to just get use an analogue camera and VTX, the DJI FPV goggles support analogue anyway with an receiver adapter. And you will save way more weight and money than getting the Nebula to be honest.
But if really want to give this a try, here are where you can get it from:
Update (July 2020): Only a few weeks after it’s initial release, they already made a new version V2. Reportedly it has hardware changes and improved image quality slightly. As far as I know, people who bought the first batch (V1) can get a discount from Caddx for their purchase of the latest Nebula (V2).