Challenges with Drones for Live Broadcast OB Television

Drones are changing the way we do everything. Live Broadcast TV and Outside Broadcast are no different. Drones are able to give never before seen shots without the crazy high costs of helicopter hire.


BUT majority of drones are designed for hobbyists and not broadcasters and the demanding needs for quality and stability now limits the full integration and use into regular outside broadcast workflows.


Some of the major challenges with consumer and even prosumer drones being used in the Live Video, Broadcast environment is as follows:


 1.       Quality of video link


The HD video links from domestic drones are designed to give then pilot a view of what’s being done while recording high quality video to removable media on the drone. Thus, the quality and stability of the HD video link is well below that desired for broadcast and is used for reference purposes only.


2.       Wi-Fi Congestion


With more and more devices on the 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz frequency band all consuming more and more bandwidth it creates bandwidth connection issues. This results in drop out, artefacts and loss of video links.


Since the drone video links are not designed to manage this well they become less dependable at big events where many people are gathered compared to licensed band frequencies.


 3.       Lack of ability to integrate into Outside OB workflows


Most drones including DJI etc were never designed to be used in the professional broadcast environment so lack the ability to fully integrate into the traditional outside broadcast workflows making their use less desirable as they lack the dependability


4.       Global Drone laws Governing the use of drones in general and in the Broadcast TV areas.


Regulatory challenges in legal safe commercial broadcast drone operations is one of the single biggest challenges. Use of a Live Broadcast Video drone is not as easy as just flying it as a lot of permissions and permits are required. This requires a lot of planning beforehand as well as Civil Aviation Permissions which means not just anyone can do it.


The uses for live broadcast drones and even DNG drones (Drone Newsgathering) are out there but are severely limited by the above.


Purple Turtle UAV drone services, South Africa has recently released their full live broadcast drone for Outside broadcast drone use as well as DNG (Drone Newsgathering)


Being Licensed by the South Africa Civil Aviation authority allows Purple Turtle Aviation, UAV Drone Services South Africa to offer a niche broadcast drone service customised for the demanding Live Outside Broadcast Environment.


Purple Turtle Aviation drones are not off the shelf and are custom built to outside Broadcast Needs.


Contact Purple Turtle Aviation, UAV Drone Services, South Africa today to find out more and change the way you do Outside Broadcast video. Also Visit us at


Live Broadcast Drones, bringing Professional Broadcast Quality, drone based solutions to Live Broadcast Television in South Africa

Purple Turtle Aviation’s UAV and Drone Services South Africa is pleased to announce another 1st in the region in our Broadcast quality Professional Live Broadcast drone for Broadcast Television and high end tv/film shoots.

The current problem with many of the drones on the market is they lack many of the technical standards, quality and versatility required in the demanding live broadcast TV production work flows. Because of this drone in live broadcasting have never really been taken seriously, Until our Live Broadcast TV drone.


The problems off the shelf drones suffer from are:

  1. Poor quality video link that are susceptible to breakup and interference from Wi-Fi in the area.
  2. Below par lenses quality lacking for broadcast demands
  3. Inability to control the camera on the drone from a CCU and RCP in the Outside Broadcast Truck.
  4. Inability to have focus and zoom functions that are worthwhile on smaller drones
  5. Limited flight times of off the shelf drones

Enter the Purple Turtle UAV and Drone Services, South Africa’s new Live Broadcast Drone offering:

  1. CCU control via custom RCP to allow for Colour control, iris and other camera setup and control from inside the OB truck
  2. Zoom lenses on the drone with focus control to allow depth of field to be used for better effect.
  3. Solutions with unlimited flight times as well as expended flight times for free flight
  4. 4k Broadcast quality Pro-res video quality
  5. Broadcast quality live video link from drone with professional broadcast systems used by many of the world outside broadcast trucks currently.
  6. 20 years in broadcast industry experience behind Purple Turtle Aviation

The Purple Turtle Aviation Live Broadcast Drone for TV is ideally suited for any live outside broadcast, sports, reality TV and anywhere else you want to give your production a different look without the massive costs of helicopter rental.

Solutions are customised for each production to help customers achieve their targets and objective sin the best possible manor.


Contact Purple Turtle Aviation, UAV and Drone Services, Port Elizabeth, South Africa to find out more. Or visit our website for more information.


Or read about some of the other UAV Drone based solutions and services information and news:

Making UAV and Drone based Services Safter for other Airspace users