There are various types of drones available in the market, that can be differentiated according to dimensions, features, quality and the level of skill required to operate them. Plus, all of them are not drones below $100. So, if you are planning to invest a considerable amount in a Quadcopter, you should leave no stones unturned in looking the features up and selecting the best alternate available in your budget.
Here, we bring you some features which can make or break the drone-frenzy you wanted to join in!
1. Camera Quality
Some drones may look quite sleek and stylish, easy to fly, and are in a way portable too, then again, the camera is a spoiler. Therefore, you should always look for the following features in a camera:
- Megapixels: A 2MP camera with 1280×720 video resolution is a decent quality and can be accepted from a drone lying in a price bracket below $200. But if you are looking for a professional quality drone, anything above 10 MP would also fare well.
- Modifiability: Whether the drone comes with the holder, the camera, or is the camera upgradable and detachable are some of the concerns that you should keep in mind.
Well, everybody does not have to get a high-end camera drone, it depends on your objective:
- Whether you want to buy an aerial photography drone to capture some high-quality shots, then you will have to look for a drone with an excellent camera quality.
- And if being able to click pictures will be a plus for you in the drone, then you can go for the ones lying in lower price brackets with decent camera specs.
- Yet, if you are looking to polish your skills in drone flying first, go for drones without a camera or with holder which will enable you to mount a camera on later.
Plus, see if it has a 3-Axis Gimbal attachment, as it would help you capture extraordinary shots and videos.
2. Real Time Feed
Yes, the ability to deliver live action on your smartphone screen or RC controller display is one of the coolest features a camera drone can offer. So, make sure that you get the one with Real-Time Transmission and FPV enabled.
Make sure that the FPV transmission range is not very less than the control range and is above 5.8GHz.
3. RC Controller: Specs and Design
Make sure that the RC controller of the drone that you buy is a good 4-channel, 2.4 GHz controller. They should be designed ergonomically, i.e., the controls should be placed on the controller according to reach of a human hand. They should not be very close to each other, or far off.
4. Battery Specifications
The battery used in most drones is rechargeable Lithium Polymer batteries, which are light and are easily available in various power options. Make sure that the drone you are buying comes with right power of batteries for better life of drones as well as batteries!
In addition to that, make sure that you go through the user manual and a lot of YouTube videos to learn the precautions when using a LiPo battery. They can be hazardous if not used with care.
5. Licencing Requirements
FAA is the Federal Aviation Administration of United States, it regulates anything and everything that floats in the sky of the country. Therefore, make sure that the drone you are buying is approved for civilian and professional use by FAA. If yes, check if you will have to get license for it as well or you are good to go without one.
6. Performance: Altitude, Flight Duration and Speed
The height above the sea level a drone can fly and the speed at which it flies and time for which it can last in the sky are another very crucial factors you should consider. Plus, make sure that the drone is supported by a 6-Axis Gyro stabilisation and has speed modes.
7. Built: Material and Design
ABS Plastic is the material normally used in building low and medium range drones, whereas high-end drones are built with aluminium grade material, but what you have to look for is that the weight of the drone should not be much for smoother flights.
As far as design of the drones is concerned, make sure that the propellers are surrounded with blade guards to protect them from wear and tear. And the drone can resist windy weather conditions to a large extent.
8. Warranty, Upgrades, and Repairs
If you know that your drone might have to face tough weather conditions, then getting a warrantied drone would be a wise choice. Go through the terms and conditions of the documents carefully before falling for certain loopholes in the warranty cards.
Your drone might not be one of the kind when you buy it but you can make it one of a kind by being able to upgrade the drone accessories, like camera, landing gear, propellers, LED Lights and batteries. Also make sure that these spare parts and accessories are available easily in the markets. In addition to upgrades, ensure the availability of customer support and repairs in case your drone collides and breaks.
9. Tech Quotient
If you are willing to pay a fortune for a professional quality drone, make sure it has all the high-tech features:
- TapFly Mode
- Auto Handsfree Hover
- VR Headset Compatibility
- Custom Flight Route Mode
- Active Track Mode
- Obstacle Sensors
- App Connectivity
10. Safety Features
Doesn’t matter if you are a beginner or a professional, safety features are a must have in all drones, so make sure your drone has the following features for a safe and smooth flight:
- LED Lights
- Headless Mode
- Altitude Hold Mode
- One Key Return
- Low battery Alarm
- One-button Take Off and Return
11. Ease of Use
Well, this is something that depends upon who you are:
Or a Professional
… because as your skills in drone flying and aerial photography vary, so do your requirements for an easy to fly drone. If you are a professional or a drone enthusiast, any flying any drone will be a cakewalk for you but if you are a novice, we recommend you to look for all the possible safety features in a drone for better learning:
- The drone should be manoeuvrable indoors and outdoors
- It should have various sensitivity and speed modes
The above will give beginners, the time to get accustomed to flying the drone before you can fly it in the wild!
If you don’t want to feel ripped-off your money by the manufacturer, don’t look through the specifications while the bling of the drone compels you to buy it!