Drones used to be expensive and limited their attraction to a small group of people. Drones have become extremely affordable in recent years. Now every budding pilot can go to heaven and control his own flying robot. You can really get lots of fun and functions for very little money. You can also dive directly and learn with a higher quality craft with more features. Best Drones For Beginners can be cheap as chips, but they do not have to be. I record a number of very affordable drones here, although affordability is not the only focus. Ease of use and pleasure flying have the highest priority.
Best drones for beginners are often cheaper because they offer fewer bells and whistles. Some high-end drones are also suitable for the novice pilot. I also include a few of those in this guide. The purpose of this overview page is to select the best drones for beginners that are now available for the complete novice and advanced beginner. Each review here follows a simple and familiar format for easy reference.
Best Drones For Beginners Comparison Table
Best Drones For Beginners Drone Name Camera Flight Time DJI Mavic Pro Yes 30 minutes DJI Phantom 3 Yes 25 minutes Parrot Bebop 2 Yes 25 minutes Holy Stone F181 RC Yes 10 minutes Ionic Stratus Extra 10 minutes Altair AA818 Hornet Yes 15 minutes UDI 818A HD+ Yes 9 minutes Hubsan X4 H107 L Extra 8 minutes Syma X5SW-V3 Yes 7 minutes Parrot Rolling Spider Yes 8 minutes Sky Viper V950HD Yes 7 minutes
Things To Know Before Buying Best Drones For Beginners
RC drones now have so many intelligent functions. Some of these are invaluable, while others can be a bit gimmicky. As a beginner drone pilot, there are six important functions to consider before buying the best drones for beginners:
- Flight time
- Flight range
- Return To Home
You can view each of these features in my no-nonsense reviews below. I record the first three items in the Technical Specifications section, along with the weight, battery type and charging time.
Let’s take a quick look at these six features and why they matter:
Maximum Flight Time
One thing that bothers the beginner is the short flight time of their new drone. It takes a lot of energy to fly these things, and that quickly drains the batteries. The longer the average flight time, the better. Make sure you always have a spare battery with you. It is the only way to extend the fun. Also, note the charging times. Some batteries are charged in 45 minutes. Others can take a few hours.
Maximum Flight Speed
Some drones are fast – incredibly fast – but they are often reserved for racing. There are also speed limits. With beginners drones, you do not have to worry about these things. Some drones contain ‘follow me’ technology. In this case, you must ensure that the drone speed is sufficient to keep track of your actions and record them, such as cycling, motorbiking, skiing, and surfing, etc. I record the maximum flight speeds in both meters per second, written as m/s, and miles per hour, mph.
Maximum Flight Range
Beginners want to keep their drones in the neighborhood. The maximum flight range is the distance between the remote control (u) and the UAV before it loses the signal. Some starting drones have short flight distances. This can limit your ability to make cool aerial photographs.
Return To Home
If a drone flies out of range, it can still find its way back as long as he has a “Return to Home” function. This is invaluable. You set the “starting point” using GPS. This function offers safety and convenience. If a drone does not have it – and loses its signal – it will eventually fall out of the sky somewhere. The consequences of this are not blank thinking. It is always better for novice pilots to keep their drones nearby, where you can see and retrieve them in the blink of an eye. You will also want to have the habit of looking at indicators for a low battery.
Some drones have a built-in camera. Others do not, but they can have a mount so you can add your own camera. Gopro cameras and other popular models are allowed on standard mounts. Your first priority is to master your flying skills. It will not be long before you want to see what your drone sees. Make sure you understand your camera and recording options before you buy. I also include low-feature drones for those who only want to gain valuable flying experience.
You can fly most drones with a hardware controller or with a smartphone or tablet via an app. Operating a UAV with a smartphone makes things really convenient and portable. A target controller usually offers more flight options and a better flight experience in general. But the ease of flying and driving your drone from a phone or tablet is something to consider. Some drones have the ability to use both a controller and a mobile device.
DJI Mavic Pro
A few beginners will not mind spending $1000 on their first drone. My choice in this higher-priced category must be the DJI Mavic Pro. The small, high-quality Mavic Pro controller is great. It does a lot, despite its simple design. It feels just as good as it looks. You simply attach your phone or tablet to the controller and you are ready to go.
It does not take long before you discover the DJI GO app. As a new pilot, and especially considering the price of the drone, you may want to find a nice open space for your first flight. DJI Mavic Pro is very easy to drive despite its high quality and refinement. My advice is to stay far away from Sport mode until you are familiar with and familiar with all the basic functions of the drone. The makers have designed the beginners mode, especially for novice pilots. It has limitations on how high and how far you can fly. This means that you do not have to worry about visibility or losing control.
Once you are familiar with the Beginner mode, familiarize yourself with the tripod mode. Although this drone flies well indoors, my advice is to first learn outside – in windless conditions. Then the air is the limit. The camera offers a sharp 4K / 24 fps imaging system. It can make JPG photos and DNG RAW. There is even a possibility to stream live to YouTube and Facebook if that’s your thing. Ideally, the DJI Mavic Pro is a prosumer UAV. It still works well as a starting drone for those who do not want to step through the cheaper models on their way to better things.
Some of the more novice-friendly features are the Beginner mode, Obstacle avoidance and the Return to Home feature, but there is so much more to discover. Since this is a beginner’s talk, I will not complicate matters by looking at the full range of impressive features of the DJI Mavic Pro. Just know that there is a lot to wonder about once you have learned to fly. At the time of writing, the Mavic Pro is perhaps one of the best small drone artists in its class. And thanks to the many smart functions, it is one of the best quadcopters on the market.
- Small and foldable
- Long flight time
- Quiet for a UAV
- Includes safety features
- Autonomous features
- Fly by phone or over WiFi
- A narrow field of view
- Doesn’t launch well from grass
DJI Phantom 3
The DJI Phantom 3 Standard is nothing short of great. It is a piece of cake to fly. This is a consumer drone that offers a lot of extra things that you just will not find with the cheaper models. The controller for this drone is much easier for the novice than DJI’s PRO and ADVANCED models. You do not get all those buttons on the shoulder that can easily overwhelm a new flyer.
The camera is built in and records video in 2.7K. To put that in a certain perspective, this gives you an image quality that is about three times brighter than the image on an HDTV. There are better cameras, but they cost higher costs. For most people, however, the quality offered by the optics of the DJI Phantom 3 Standard is clean and accurate. The main reason for listing this drone is not because of the possibilities for filming and photography. It is here because it is a beautiful flyer and a great UAV to learn.
One of the most striking advantages of a drone in this category is the amazing battery life. So far we have seen an average of 7-8 minutes. This beauty gives you a maximum flight time of 25 minutes per load. There is also a warning signal to notify you when the vessel is almost out of range. But what if you do not hear it? No problem – the drone automatically turns around and goes home. There are so many useful and failsafe functions for automatic flying with the Phantom 3 standard. It is really child’s play. You may even reach a point where you are bored with the intelligence of the drone.
If you are an expert flyer, you can leave the basic flight modes and become more creative. You can start filming or create beautiful aerial photographs. It will not take long to lose that new pilot status. I like this as a starting drone because it is so stable. You do not have to worry about flying too far or too far, or losing sight of it. And you can always recall manual controls whenever you want. This is a great drone for the advanced beginner. However, do not try to fly without reading the manual from start to finish. Pay special attention to the manual operation.
- Very easy for beginners to fly
- Solid build quality
- Feature-rich app
- Intelligent flight modes
- HD live video feed
- Good flight time
- Limited range for the price
- Holder doesn’t support iPad
- Extra batteries expensive
- Only includes 8 GB SD card
Parrot Bebop 2
The Parrot BeBop 2 is a great drone for beginners to advanced kites. The battery lasts an impressive 25 minutes in ideal conditions. This rewards new pilots with a lot of valuable flight time. You must attach a few parts when you take it out of the box. Do not worry; the assembly is simple for everyone at every level. The props have a color code and simply rotate into position. The BeBop 2 does not come with its own controller. You have to fly it with your smartphone and the flight app. You can skip this assessment or pay extra if you prefer to use a physical controller.
You can always invest in a bundle. This usually includes an FPV kit. It has the Parrot Skycontroller 2 and a set of cockpit glasses for that ultimate flying experience. However, these are not beginner tools. Compared to the first version, the new BeBop 2 has an improved camera and a stronger vessel. It is also windproof. This is especially useful if you live in an airy part of the country. The integrated camera has a 180 ° fisheye lens. It takes 14 MP photos and makes full HD 1080p video. Having a built-in camera is a nice feature for beginners because there is less to think about.
The follow-you function means that the drone flies while he is filming you, or whatever you have to follow. I have come across a few complaints where users say it is sometimes slow to respond. The BeBop 2 is light and storable. It would be even more portable if they gave the retractable legs. However, it is still easy to put a bag in despite the fixed design. This is not a race drone, but it is rather nippy at about 37 km / h with horizontal flying. The top speed also does not seem to influence the image quality. The wind resistance function also helps with this.
- Easily portable
- Fast and stable
- Durable design
- Straightforward controls
- Autonomous features
- Powerful motors
- Limited range with smartphone/tablet
- Limited 8GB memory
- Have to pay a fee to unlock the in-app
Holy Stone F181 RC
The Holy Stone F181 quadcopter comes with a set of knife protections. Make sure to include these before you fly. You will be grateful for the protection they can offer during a crash. New users hate the short flight times that plague starting drones. The F181 is no exception in about eight minutes. The good news is that this drone comes with a bonus battery. That is unusual. Drones can become quite hot with continuous flying. It is a good idea to allow 10 minutes of cooling time before you take off with a replacement battery. This helps to extend the life of the motors.
The Holy Stone F181 is also equipped with a 2MP detachable camera. Leave the camera until you have mastered flying with the drone. The lower weight also gives you more flight time. The camera resolution is 1280 × 720. You can take photos and record reasonable video. The image quality is nothing to get enthusiastic about. Yet for this price, it is more than acceptable for a drone. What sets the Holy Stone F181 apart from some of the cheaper models is the steady performance and the great design. It is easy to fly and has a lot of great extras like the camera and the headless mode.
It is almost impossible to lose the F181. This is due to headless protection and the most important return functions. All you have to do is press a button to return the vessel when it is out of sight or out of range. These safety functions are important since there is no GPS. All in all, this drone is one step higher than the cheaper micro options. It is a great beginners course for both teenagers and adults. This is the one for you if you are looking for a starter drone with more functions than a basic model.
- Easy to grasp
- Includes camera
- Intuitive controls
- Soft landing pads
- Short flight time
- Motors get very hot
The medium-sized drone from Ionic Stratus is packed with functions. It is also a good choice for advanced beginners. It does not have a camera, but it does have a camera attachment. What we have here is a great beginner UAV thanks to its low weight and easy handling. It also comes with some handy flight functions, some of which you will not investigate before you have gained more experience. The frame of the Ionic Stratus is sturdy and shock-resistant. The overall construction is solid and the screws of the screw seem durable. The thin landing gear is a bit of a letdown, otherwise, it is all good. If you destroy something – and you might be a newbie pilot – this is not the end of the world. You can easily find spare parts online. They are also cheap.
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Some novice drones do not have cameras and do not have the possibility to confirm one. Others come with built-in or detachable cameras of average quality. The Ionic Stratus only has a camera attachment. With this camera mount, you can attach any GoPro Hero to the front of the vessel. Now you have an affordable drone that is capable of taking professional-looking photos and HD videos. The intuitive remote control gives you a flight range of about 150 m. This is more than enough for beginners. I could not find anything difficult about one of the basic operations.
The pre-programmed flight modes offer pilots a lot of fun while keeping the flying experience simple. More experienced pilots can adjust the gas to make things more interesting. I understand that not every entry-level user wants a craft of this size, with these many features, and the need to buy a camera from another manufacturer. That is why there is a series of beginner drones on this review page. But then there are people who want a cheap, adaptable, fast flying drone with semi-professional possibilities. For them, the Ionic Stratus Drone delivers on all those fronts.
- Compatible with GoPro cameras
- Fun and easy to fly
- Headless mode
- Reliable landing gear
- Good build/durable
- Propeller guard
- Value for money
- Poor shock mount
- Long charging time
- May prove too fast for some learner pilots
- Short flight time
Altair AA818 Hornet
Everyone at every level can enjoy the Altair AA818 Hornet Plus Drone. It is an excellent choice for beginners who want to explore aerial photography and videography. You can use the drone with a smartphone device, although that is not mandatory. So why bother? Now, once you have connected the 720p HD camera (included), you can use a smartphone to receive live video. The camera becomes your eye in the air and your smart device screen gives you a bird’s-eye view. Flying into First Person View (FPV) is not something that a complete beginner should try.
One of the main attractions as a beginner drone are the three skill modes. These are Beginner, Medium and Advanced. The different levels allow new pilots to develop their skills with one quad instead of upgrading each time they improve. You can expect about 15 minutes of flight time with the AA818 Hornet. That is on the high side of the average. There is also a bonus battery that effectively doubles the flight time to 30 minutes. Unfortunately, the charging time of the battery is nothing special (see below). The operational range is approximately 490+ feet (150 m), and that is far enough for a starting drone. The video range is good for about 197 ft. (60m).
- Durable build quality
- Smartphone-ready for FPV
- Three skill level settings
- Multiple flight modes
- Nighttime LEDs
- Extra props
- Extra battery
- Long charging time
- No Return Home
- No GPS feature
UDI 818A HD+
This is a nice drone to fly on every level, but the makers built it with the beginner firmly in mind. It has good elastic plastic blade protections to help protect against those unavoidable accident crashes. The crash-proof design is resistant to collisions with walls, trees, and other objects, as well as hard landings. It is a perfect first drone for anyone who wants to learn how to control a UAV. All you have to do is unpack this drone, charge the battery and then air it. It is going to give you an unforgettable flying experience for the first time. Seriously, this little UAV is “EASY” written everywhere.
You will also not suffer from boredom with this easy to maneuver robot. You have options to tilt it 360 degrees in any direction, take pictures, and record video with sound. Let’s look at the small camera. The UDI 818A HD + comes with a small 2MP, front-facing camera that has already been attached. The quality of the optics is excellent for a drone in this price range. I would say that it is one of the best in its class. The four-channel function ensures stable flying and easy operation: left/right, up/down, forward/backward and 360 ° flips. There is nothing confusing about the controller at all.
- Easy to fly
- Very agile and robust
- Stable flyer
- Includes camera
- Includes controller
- Poorly written manual
- Short battery life
- Limited flight range
Hubsan X4 H107 L
The Hubsan X4 H107 L is in second place. Best drones for beginners are not much cheaper than this. The manual that accompanies this vessel is also very easy to follow. The X4 flies amazingly well. It is also fast. The controller has all the basic flight settings that you would expect without extras to confuse a newbie pilot (controller batteries not included).
The thing that will most likely spoil your pleasure is the short flight time of nine minutes. I always suggest ordering a spare battery or two. It is the only way to extend your pleasure and practice more. The X4 has warning lights that let you know when the battery is low. And the transmitter provides a safety feature that alerts you when the drone is out of range. This is a great drone to practice pilot skills, but that’s all. It is small and light and handles crash pretty well. However, it does not come with a camera and there is no place to attach one.
It is a great little drone to practice your flying skills indoors and outdoors, but be careful! It sounds like a big swarm of fierce bees. You may want to make sure that you are alone at home for indoor exercises. Unlike the UDI 818A HD + above, there are no blade protections with the X4. This makes the props a bit vulnerable. On the other hand, it is easy to buy replacement parts if you break something. Many drone enthusiasts nowadays touch racing quadcopters. The X4 H107 L is the perfect mini-quadcopter to develop your speed skills when racing drones interest you.
- Fast charging time
- Small and lightweight
- Easy to fly and agile
- Survives crashes really well
- Inexpensive spare parts
- No blade guards
- Short flying time
Compared to the first two picks, the Syma X5SW-V3 has a few extra functions. It is still a great drone for beginners at an affordable price. Keep reading to see if these extra features appeal to you. Consider this UAV if you want to immerse yourself in aerial photography and video skills and also want to fly. The WIFI-compatible camera sends photos and live video directly to an Android or iPhone. With the FPV (First Person View) you can see what the camera sees during the flight. First, you need the app. On the side of the box is a handy QR code that you can easily scan to download the application. This drone is supplied with protective propeller guards.
Anything that helps to protect against collisions and landings from a crash should be a good thing, especially for beginners. You need a special smartphone holder to attach your mobile device to the transmitter (supplied). Once fixed you start WiFi and open the Syma FPV app. That’s about it. You are now ready to go into the air. This is a nice stable flyer that is easy to handle in quiet conditions. Keep the craft at lower altitudes if you want to fly outside in a breeze. In this way, it will be much easier to handle. Make sure you stay in Low-Speed mode until you are more competent. It is easy to get impatient, but be careful. Flying too fast too fast will only end in collisions and landings with crashing.
- Durable craft
- Headless mode
- The battery on/off switch
- Good for stunts practice
- Short flying time
- Short transmission range
- Only Android 4.0 and above
- Not so good in the wind
Parrot Rolling Spider
The Parrot Rolling Spider is a micro-quadcopter of palm size. It is actually quite advanced despite its simplistic appeal. Unlike many other drones, there is no traditional remote control with this. New pilots can enjoy some simple tap-and-fly modes, such as tapping to take off and tapping to land. The drone then does what you say. These automation functions offer you a stable, obedient and enjoyable flight. There are many more advanced functions to explore once you have completed some flight time. For example, you can control the acceleration, climbing and turning speeds and altitude limits.
I like this drone because it is a very capable, independent flyer and hoverer. The strange looking click wheels help protect the rotating props. Propeller protection is always a good beginner function. The wheels do more than just guarding the blades. They protect furniture and fragile objects when they fly indoors. They also roll the drone over ceilings and walls. You have to see it to believe it. If you do not need the wheels, you must switch them off. Anything you can do to relieve the tax will extend your flight time – currently about 8 minutes per charge.
If flying was more predictable, this UAV would be further on the list. The secret here is to stay within a distance of about 20 meters. This way you get a more consistent flying experience. When you become a competent flyer, there is plenty of opportunities to improve your game. In addition, the Rolling Spider is surprisingly fast and acrobatic when you adjust its flight modes. Although this drone is equipped with a downward facing camera, it will not provide you with a photo or video prices. It is better than nothing, but the main goal is motion detection, not visual material.
- Great design/build
- Easy to set up
- Innovative features
- Unique wheels feature
- Limited (Bluetooth) range
- Short flight time
Sky Viper V950HD
The Sky Viper Video Drone V950HD is still a beginner-friendly UAV for everyone aged 12 and up. It is also a pretty fast drone. But if you are a novice racer in the making, consider other options. You will crash while you learn to fly. Believe me; you will be grateful for the propeller protection guards. This vessel also has a polypropylene body, which further increases durability and crash resistance. The adjustable sensitivity option gives you control over experience levels. That means you have a versatile UAV with which you can develop your flying skills beyond the entry level. This is a semi-assembled drone, so you need to attach a few parts to the body before you can fly it.
It is also pretty big, but that makes it easier to keep an eye on the outside. What is impressive about the camera is that it can take 360 ° panoramic images. You control this with a simple push of a button. Okay, so the optics might not be surprising, but there is a lot to play with. The microSD card of 4 GB (included) saves about 20 minutes of video material. Upgrade to a 32 GB card if you need more storage space. There is a micro USB cable to upload videos and photos to a computer. Flying time for the Sky Viper is a meager 5-7 minutes. It is always a good idea to have a spare battery or two with you. Expect about 90 minutes to fully charge the batteries.
- Easy drone to fly
- Camera included
- Durable design
- Responsive RC
- Stabilization functions
- Short battery life
- Fairly short flight range
- Limited smartphone support
Thank you very much for taking the time to learn about these Best Drones For Beginners. You can indeed not fail with one of them; in addition, they all come with their list of positive and negative points. We would like to know what you think about which you chose to buy. In case you are still unable to choose the best drones for beginners, go ahead and leave your response below so that we can do our best to help you. Our team is of the opinion that you have found this buying guide useful and do not forget to distribute it on the social channels of your preference.
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