The remote control (RC) operated multi-rotor flying units, known as drones, are the most innovative electronic devices offering a completely new way of viewing the surroundings from an unsought perspective. For those who wish to be a drone pilot, RC drones with live viewing of videos and snapshots from first person perspective deliver an exciting joyride. They can even allow competing or performing stunts thrillingly with others in air. For those who are new or are looking for a light and compact design for an entry level RC flight, a mini drone is the perfect choice.
Overview of Mini Drones
As the name indicates, a mini-drone is smaller as well as more economical than a standard sized drone. It is light in weight and compact in style due to which it boasts agility as well as maneuverability. Although such models are sturdy, they may not be as strong as high quality drones lasting even amidst strong winds. However, mini drones handling winds that are mild, are available in the market. The rest of the functionality like flight ability, orientation, design, and stability almost remain the same.
Mini drones feature a blend of robot and high technology to be prop-driven fliers. A few are photography devices, while some are just small toys. Most of them perform well in both indoors and outdoors as well as in night with bright LEDs. Similarly, while some of them function through a dedicated radio controller, others are controllable through a tablet or smartphone application. However, most of the mini drones get power from rechargeable batteries or some normal ones.
Most of them feature computer controls and a gyroscope to offer more flight control as well as stability and camera for capturing still images and/or videos from a high altitude but at a medium resolution. It is not uncommon to see craze for best mini drones with cameras. A few models are such that they have limited flight modes for learning without crashes or have preprogrammed flying options for lops or flips.
Factors to Consider When Buying Mini Drones
There are a few critical features or factors to consider while looking in the collection of best mini drones to buy. It is vital to know that the flight time and range are dependent upon the weight and size, while the remote control distance is dependent upon the controller characteristics. Here are such features or factors to consider.
- Size and Weight: You can find ultra light drones fitting in your palm, bigger ones for outdoor use, and bulky mini drones for longer video capturing. A lightweight model is ideal for indoor use, while a heavier one with better stability is fine for outdoors.
- Flight Time: This refers to total time for which the unit can stay in air until the next recharge. It is affected by battery size, weight, and flying maneuvers. Mini drones usually have a shorter flying time, ranging from 4 to 20 minutes. The time gets shorter with more flips, loops, and height. To prevent frustration due to short time, do consider an extra battery. You can expect a recharging time from 30 to 90 minutes.
- Camera: Most mini drones come with low or medium quality camera. However, not all have the capacity to record videos or show them live, which has a big impact on the price. Having a camera is not mandatory but it is handy to have a bird’s-eye view. Having a model with lower resolution saves weight, space, and battery power. However, having a model with First Person Viewing (FPV), photo shooting, and image capturing abilities deliver an awesome experience for the money you pay.
- Skill Level: This is a critical factor to consider or else you will end up paying thousands of dollars. If you are flying for the first time, get started with a cheaper model that is easy to use and is
- Flight Range: This is a function of flight time and speed. While it does not matter significantly for indoors, it makes sense to have sufficient range for outdoor use.
- Controller/Transmitter: This part is responsible for sending commands to the drone. Most drones have controllers operating on 2.4GHz and feature analog sticks or an LCD screen showing real time diagnostics.
- Stability: The small size can make it difficult to fly due to which it is essential to choose a drone that is stable and easy to adjust. Consider a model with durable frame and resistance to split.
- LED Light: This is a plus for flying at night. LED lights make much difference, as it effortlessly indicates the path to which the drone is directed along with position to notice it.
- Replacement Parts: Because mini drones are not that durable, it is best to have a model whose spare parts, especially the prop rotor blades, are easily and affordably available.
- Holy Stone F180c Mini RC Drone (Most Affordable):
Lightweight quadcopter for both beginner and advanced, 720p camera for videos and still images, runs on a rechargeable lithium polymer battery, four levels of control for both outdoor and indoor use, easy to use, ideal for seasonal hobbyists or drone trainees
- Extreme Fliers Micro Drone 2.0 (Highly Innovative):
Elite but a bit expensive for the rare features it provides, has its own flight controller, comes with USB adapter and micro SD card, and features a distinct modular camera configured to point ahead or down, ideal for upgraders and tech geeks
- Hubsan X4 Quadcopter with FPV Camera Toy (Live Video Watching):
Lightweight, durable, 6-axis control mechanism, up to 100m of control and live video distance, instant video preview on transmitter, lithium polymer battery with safety PCB, latest gyro stabilization
- NightHawk DM007 Quadcopter (Comprehensive Customer Support and HD Recording):
Lightweight for both beginner and experienced, 2.4GHz controller, up to 150 communication range, 2MP 720p HD video recording, headless mode and precise hovering ability, camera activation in just one RC switch, latest adjustable gyro system, and ideal anti-interference ability