7 Best Drones Under 500: Reviews & Buying Guide 

 

Our Top Picks

BEST OVERALL PICK 

UPair Two Drone 4K UHD

 

BEST VALUE PICK 

Ruko F11 Pro Drone 4k Quadcopter

 

BEST FOR PHOTOGRAPHY

DJI Spark, Portable Mini Drone, Alpine

 

Best Drone Under 500 - Reviews

1. UPair Two Drone with 4K UHD Camera

WEIGHT: 3.31 lbs | RANGE: 4200 ft | FLIGHT TIME: 24 mts | CAMERA: 4K video resolution

 UPair Two Drone with 4K UHD Camera

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The first in the list is the UPair Two Drone which lets you enjoy 3D UHD videos which can be viewed in your VR Glasses after the video is shot. With the optical flow positioning, the sensor constantly collects information of images through IAS at a fixed rate.

Click on the ‘Follow me’ button in the app and post the launch, the aircraft will fly till 10 metres above the ground. Once you download the Upair app and set task points, the drone will fly through the waypoints. However, this function needs to be operated from a position hold mode.

With its Headless mode and One Key Return to Home Function, this is a best choice for beginners and experienced flyers that prefer aerial photography.

Pros

  • Clicks photographs like a pro
  • Stabilized and organized
  • Offers safe flights
  • Stable in strong winds

Cons

  • Evening photos lack clarity and color
  • Battery lasts less than expected at times

2. DJI Spark Portable Mini Drone Alpine White

WEIGHT: 1.49 lbs | RANGE: 100 yards | FLIGHT TIME: 15 mts | CAMERA: 1080 video and photos

DJI Spark Portable Mini Drone

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The next on the list is the DJI Spark which has all the signature technologies of DJI. Spark’s smart and intelligent flight mode, intuitive and reliable Quick shot videos starts with just a tap lets you seize the moment whenever you feel inspired.

It is capable of detecting its operating environment with clear patterned surfaces and with sufficient lighting. The premium quality camera clicks crystal-clear images and takes shake-free shots, thereby helping the beginners enjoy the shots.

With a commendable potential for flight performance, effective propulsion speed, stellar precision control and immersive experience, the DJI Spark can give a real-time experience to the user.

It has an in-built 2-Axis Gimbal camera that takes the best pictures and videos that you can desire for within this budget thereby making it ideally suitable for beginners.

Pros

  • Easy to operate, good for beginners
  • Loaded with features like smart and intelligent flight mode
  • HD 1080 camera shoots professional videos

Cons

  • No remote control in the package

3. DJI Phantom Aerial UAV Drone Quadcopter for GoPro

WEIGHT: 2.2pounds | RANGE: 200FT | FLIGHT TIME: 20 mts | CAMERA: 4K video resolution

DJI Phantom Aerial UAV Drone Quadcopter for GoPro

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This is a pre-tuned quadcopter that is ready within few minutes. All you have to do after receiving the box is unbox it, charge the battery, attach the landing gear, propellers and add 4AA batteries to the remote. Once you attach the GoPro, it is even better to record the action as it produced the most dramatic cinematic pictures from the air.

With the latest GPS positioning that compensates for light wind, outdoor flight is possible. This drone has got a fail-safe function which helps it fly to and also land at its original take-off position in case the connection to the transmitter is lost. It flies fast at 22miles/hour (10meters/second) and lets you capture even sports actions with ease.

This product will appeal the most to RC aircraft hobbyists who are looking forward to mount their camera in order to record flights, photographers and videographers who wish to open a new range of shooting possibilities.

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Pros

  • Well suited for photography hobbyists
  • Latest version has several upgrades
  • Easy to assemble and fly
  • Worth your dollars

Cons

  • Poor documentation and manuals

4. DJI Mavic Mini – Drone FlyCam Quadcopter

WEIGHT: Under 250 g | RANGE: 1000 m | FLIGHT TIME: 30 mts | CAMERA: 2.7K Quad HD videos

DJI Mavic Mini Drone FlyCam Quadcopter

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As you unbox this, you find a DJI Mavic Mini, Intelligent Flight Battery, Remote Controller, Micro USB cable, pair of spare propellers, RC cable, Gimbal Protector, RC cable, spare control sticks and screwdriver. With a basic OS of Android version 6.0 or later and iOS version 10.0 or later, you can use this drone. The camera has a quality of elevating the ordinary and the DJI Fly app offer an effortless flying experience.

Apart from supporting 2,7K Quad HD videos and 12MP aerial photos, the 3-axis gimbal offers enhanced stability of camera ensure smooth footage. You can personalize your Mavic Mini with loads of accessories. A fully charged battery will give you 30 minutes uninterrupted flight time.

The 360 degree propeller guard that safeguards the propellers, this model seems to be an ideal choice for beginners and experts alike.

Pros

  • Smaller, lighter, better
  • Works both indoors and outdoors
  • Flies well in complex and narrow spaces
  • Good for quick photography

Cons

  • The DJI app can be buggy 

5. HUBSAN Zino Drone Foldable Quadcopter

WEIGHT: 710g | RANGE: 1000m | FLIGHT TIME: 23 mts | CAMERA: 4K Quad HD videos 

HUBSAN Zino Drone Foldable Quadcopter

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The Zino is special due to its simple design with aerodynamics and a smooth body line that helps in achieving a stable flight with high agility. With the Smart Tracking King feature, it follows the target and person in-screen. Mounting of the 3-axis gimbal camera assures stable shooting from different angles.

With waypoint plan, you draw the desired route of flight in the app and the aircraft will fly as per your instructions. The aircraft records all details and flies based on information. Thanks to the one-key automatic take-off and landing function that the drone returns to its accurate position with a single nudge.

Users who love aerial photography, both beginners and experts, can use the HUBSAN Zino to record the journey that you’ve dreamt of.

Pros

  • Top class 4K camera drone
  • Lots of tech packed into one package
  • Great customer service

Cons

  • Battery discharges rapidly

7. Ruko F11 Pro Drone 4k Quadcopter

WEIGHT: 520 g | RANGE: 1200m | FLIGHT TIME: 25-30 mts | CAMERA: 4K

Ruko F11 Pro Drone 4k Quadcopter

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The Ruko Quadcopter lets you experience 2.7k video and 4K ultra HD picture quality with deep contrast, clarity and vivid colors. Armed with the most upgraded 2500mAh intelligent battery, this drone has an average of 25-30 minutes flight time and the package arrives with 2 pieces of batteries which can extend the flight time to 60mins.

Tap on ‘YEAH’ to activate the function where you make a ‘YEAH’ gesture standing within a distance of 2-3m with the camera and the camera clicks one photo. As soon as you make a ‘PLAM’ gesture, the camera starts recording a video. With its headless mode, the direction of the drone is oriented with the direction of the pilot and hence there’s no worry about losing direction. This drone is compact and foldable and you can carry it anywhere inside your pocket.

Thanks to the 3speed modes (low/med/high) that it is perfectly suited for both the experts and beginners alike. To add on to your fun, you could even switch from one speed mode to another while the drone is flying.

Pros

  • Top quality photos and videos
  • Easy to operate
  • Stable in strong winds
  • Foldable, comes with a well-fitted carrying case

Cons

  • Real-time video transmission not always accurate
  • Software bugs 

 

So, regardless of whether you are new to flying drones or you’re a seasoned flyer, there are several models that are not only tailored to meet your needs but also that won’t break your bank. Choose the best one that suits your requirements and pursue your hobby!

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