(Android and iOS) Is the .p4d file required for processing?

There are several options to process images that were captured with the app: From the cloud, the device or the drone's memory. For more information: 214516203.
One option is to use the project file (.p4d) generated by the app after synchronizing the mission. For more information: 204716225 (Android), 204057579 (iOS).

The table below clarifies the use of the .p4d file to process with Pix4D Desktop.

Supported drones Android .p4d file iOS .p4d file
DJI Inspire 1 (Pro)
DJI Matrice 100
DJI Mavic Pro
DJI Phantom 3 Advanced
DJI Phantom 3 Professional
DJI Phantom 3 Standard
DJI Phantom 4
DJI Phantom 4 Pro
Parrot Bebop 2

Processing with or without the .p4d is almost equivalent, meaning it does not significantly impact the reconstruction of the model.

The camera is triggered by a fixed time lapse meaning the images can be very close in terms of visual content like in the corners where the drone slows down. When synchronizing, redundant images are discarded. These images might also be blurry because the drone turns. Therefore, there are more images on the drone’s SD card than on the mobile device and in the .p4d.

Without the .p4d, it is still possible to process the images transferred to the device and those on the drone (after discarding blurry ones). For more information (Options B and C): 214516203.
If necessary the images can be disabled once the project is created: 202560069.

In addition, a default processing area and some processing settings are automatically defined in the .p4d but can still be defined later manually in the software. For more information: 205319155, 202560179.

Processing with or without the .p4d is equivalent, meaning it does not impact the reconstruction of the model.

However, a default processing area and some processing settings are automatically defined in the .p4d but can still be defined later manually in the software. For more information: 205319155, 202560179.

DJI Phantom 2 Vision(+) P2V(+) drones have accurate geolocation however, when passing the geotags to the EXIF of the images in the SD card some decimals are removed. In addition, P2V(+) drones do not measure the altitude because they do not have an altimeter. The app writes accurate 3D image coordinates in the .p4d.
3DR Solo The .p4d contains accurate image coordinates but the app does not write in the image EXIF directly. Does not apply. 3DR Solo not supported on iOS.

 

The table below compares the geotags written in the EXIF of the images to the image geolocation written in the .p4d file generated by the app.

Source Coordinates P2V(+) Other DJI drones Parrot B2 3DR Solo
Image EXIF Long. Lat.
Inaccurate Accurate Accurate Not written
Alt. Not recorded Could be shifted Accurate Not written
Android / iOS .p4d Long. Lat. Alt. Accurate: corrected with device’s geolocation Copied from EXIF Copied from EXIF Accurate: corrected with device’s geolocation

 

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