“This was an amazing purchase and the camera is actually pretty good and the battery life sounds short but when you’re actually using it it feels longer than it is.”
Things To Consider Before Buying A Mini Drone Camera
It has been just over a decade since the first commercial drone was released; within that span of time, the drone market has become more and more competitive, with a diverse array of available drones and mini drones that have been adapted for use by professional videographers and photography newbies - even kids can get their hands on a relatively cheap and functional drone.
Drones are aerial gadgets that are controlled by a remote device. These flying gadgets can be used for different purposes. Initially (and like many pieces of technology), drones were developed for use in the military. However, these fun tools were commercialised and have since risen greatly in popularity. Most often, drones are used by photographers and videographers, with the flying vehicles carrying miniature cameras that can take great aerial shots of events, occasions, and even just pictures of a day out with the kids.
There are several kinds of drones being marketed at different tiers. Some drones are really expensive, costing hundreds of dollars, while the other ones are at a much friendlier price point. While most professional photographers go for the high-end and expensive drones, the affordable versions still offer great functionality and other decent features. While you can’t expect the quality of some of these drones to match what you would get from a drone that costs 10 times as much, the list of items above are some of the hidden gems that we dug up which give you great value for your money.
While the list presents a variety of different options fit for a range of purposes and skill levels, you might still be looking for a drone that is better fit to your needs. You may know what specific features you need in a drone but ensuring that these other functionalities are reliable is also necessary to find the right drone. These are a few specifications you’ll need to check out when eyeing a mini drone with a camera.
On average, mini drones rely on 1 or 2 batteries, and give users anywhere between 5 to 20 minutes of flight time - with smaller drones flying at the lower end of that range. That amount of time may not seem long but there are some ways to get around this. Some drones have removable batteries which you can easily swap out with a recharged spare every time the battery drains out.
Another thing you’ll probably want to check is how long the battery takes to charge. There are some drones that give longer flight times but need hours to fully charge the batteries. When the battery gets low, having an alert system is extremely useful for you to know when you need to start getting the drone back to the ground. A safety feature in most higher end models is the automatic landing function set in drones which makes it start descent when battery levels get too low.
Camera Resolution and Quality
One of the main reasons you're getting a drone with a camera is to capture good aerial shots. A decent camera is necessary if you want to capture good shots. There are some drones that have a built-in camera, while others have a bracket where a mini camera can be attached to. With the former option, you are stuck with the built-in video quality of the device, whereas the latter option might allow you to swap out the mini camera with a better model. However, this also means purchasing another camera.
Drones are controlled with either a remote control or a WiFi-connected app. In either case, there is a maximum limit to the control distance. A higher transmission range would mean that the device can travel further from the controller, without breaking the connection. However, smaller drones tend to have shorter ranges - which means you have to keep them close by. Aside from looking at the transmission ranges of a drone camera, the default functions that dictate what happens when the device gets out of range is also important. When out of range, some drones automatically fly back to the previous location, hover in the same area, or apply an automatic landing feature. (2
Unfortunately, there are other drones that might continue to fly in the same direction until the connection is reestablished. This can become problematic since many drones get lost in this manner.
Ease of Control
Flying a drone might seem easy, and while most people are able to get the hang of it over time, some drones are much easier to control than others. One of the first things that you’ll need to look at is the controller. Simple controllers look like game controllers, with the joysticks and set of buttons that relay different functions. However, there are a few controllers that provide a more complex set of controls, which can be beneficial for experienced drone flyers but also confusing for beginners. Depending on your skill level, the type of controls available should also be taken into consideration.
Picking the best drone involves a lot of comparison. However, identifying the main purpose of the drone, your skill level as a drone flyer, and your budget, you ‘ll be able to pick out a drone that should fit all the necessary criteria. The current drone market is highly competitive; with more and more high-functioning and affordable drones being released each year.
(1) - TF Card - https://www.partitionwizard.com/partitionmanager/tf-card.html
(2) - Transmission on drones - https://time.com/3769831/this-is-how-drones-work/