Drones for Sale 2017 – Best Drones You Can Buy Right Now!
With drone and quadcopter technology advancing swiftly by day, you would be deluded to believe that a 2015 blockbuster is still the best money can buy in 2017. Companies are mercilessly upstaging each other and there is simply too little space left in the chockablock market for mediocre inventions. You may be looking for the best drones for sale – thinking of obtaining your first drone – understandable because the price barriers are now gone – or maybe upgrading from your little noisy gauche to a more polished and sophisticated one. But have you taken a personal survey of what the market has to offer?
We thought we should help you. Find below our superficial reviews of some of the products we reckon make for the best drones for sale of 2017, but first I will take you through a brief overview of what drones are, the types available and a few other things you may find interesting about them.
What are Drones?
So first, drones are machines that can fly without a human pilot in it like their other name Unmanned Aerial Vehicles’ suggests. They can be controlled by computers and in most cases of toy drones by remote control.
Their classification is based on no set standard but usage has always been used as the single most common paradigm as it largely affects other aspects such as size, shape, engine power and more. Cargo – such as Amazon’s delivery prototype – military surveillance or even professional videography drones are characteristically more powerful and larger than commonplace photography and videography ones plausibly because they have to carry their own weight as well as the weight of whatever it is they are transporting. Also, they have higher flytime and more sophisticated obstacle avoidance sensors as they are usually unmonitored through to their destinations and back. These mostly command higher prices.
The ordinary drones that anyone can obtain and fly (for purposes other than those connected to government agencies) are classified as Model or Civil aircraft. If you fly as a hobby, say, taking aerial photographs and videos of your neighbourhood or even racing, it’s Model, but if you do it for commercial purposes it’s Civil. We are going to focus on these two categories in our list because that’s probably what you are interested in.
So here’s is our list of the ten best drones for sale of 2017.
1. DJI Phantom 2 Vision Drone
With a built-in high resolution GoPro, a maximum speed of 33.5 miles per hour, 25 minutes flight time and an average operating range of 1000 feet, the discontinued DJI Phantom 2 is one of the most sophisticated drones for sale you still can obtain for $550. The operating range is really not the best there is on the market, and this quite limits the number of things you can do with the drone, but then there is a variety of purposes in its power that it can execute perfectly.
The built-in GPS ensures your drone remains steady in the air as you shoot, although the footages can be a little shaky sometimes due to the lack of a stabilization gimbal. But, to cancel that out, the drone offers real time view of what the camera is shooting right from your smartphone’s display. DJI offers the Vision App which is compatible with both iOS and Android to enable the first person streaming functionality.
Perhaps the only downside of the drone which eclipses its restricted operating range is the lack of a rechargeable battery; it uses 4 AA batteries and the fact that DJI has discontinued its Phantom 2 Vision range.
2. DJI Phantom 3 Series
The Phantom 3 is what you get when you combine great video quality, up-to-the-minute hardware, most flytime and the easiest flying object to control. Of course there’s the Phantom 4 – which is an overall upgrade of this – but then you’re not going to obtain a better drone at the price range of the Phantom 3.
For starters, this is the biggest and most advanced drone you can fly. It has a built-in flight simulator that makes the conventional idea of learning with a smaller drone virtually irrelevant.
It comes in four different models:
- DJI Phantom 3 Standard,
- Phantom 3 Advanced,
- Phantom 3 4K
- and Phantom 3 Professional
which superficially increase in sophistication and price in that order.
The Professional has
- GPS waypoints,
- point of interest,
- ultrasonic sensors,
- 20+ minutes of flight time and more.
The Phantom Advanced offers all these but at 2.7K instead of 4K which the Phantom 3 4K also uses.
The Phantom 3 Standard is at the bottom of the food chain with features similar to those of a 3DR Solo equipped with a gimbal and GoPro Hero 4 Silver for half the price.
3. The 3DR Robotics Solo Smart Drone
The 3DR Robotics Solo is a super-functional little quadcopter very close to the Phantom 3 in superiority but with a separable GoPro in place of an in-built camera. That not only means that you can attach a camera of your choice to the gimbal but also that you can disengage the GoPro and use your widget for another purpose altogether.
It goes at an affordable $999 – a price that apparently doesn’t include the gimbal or the Go Pro. For a package including a 3 axis gimbal and a GoPro Hero 4 Black Edition, you’ll have to fork out an additional $900.
Unfortunately, it’s marginally more expensive than the Yuneec q500 4K and the Phantom 3 which produce photos of roughly similar quality, but then its versatility and ease of upgradability make it a worthwhile pick if you can afford it.
4. DJI Phantom 4 Camera Drone
Talking about the Phantom 4, you’re referring to arguably the most innovative camera drone and one of the best drones for sale of 2017. It sports contemporary computer hardware and additional 3D cameras that reduces the risk of crashing into objects to almost zero. But what’s truly amazing about the widget is its well-adjusted all-roundedness. It is fast, looks great and has an unparalleled quality of live video streaming. It can easily map out environments in 3D space, and barely lets the propellers come into the field of view. The price is definitely higher than that of the Phantom 3 but that has been justified by the hardware superiority it boasts.
In words of one syllable, the Phantom 4K can rate extremely well against any drone out there for any single feature.
It currently goes at $1,399.
5. Yuneec Q500 4K
The Q500 is the newest model of the little known company Yuneec. Like the Solo and the Phantoms, it shoots 4K videos but has additional features such as the double battery kit, detachable gimbal and camera and the built-in Android device in the controller which works the same as a tablet or smartphone. Of course its low popularity does count against it, especially through the fact that there are hardly any compatible third party accessories on the market right now, but at $1300, the drone with its built-in features is cheap at twice the price.
Just for the record, if you plan to obtain a Q500 4K, ask for the latest silver and black 4K version as the original version has a low quality 1080 camera and on the whole isn’t that great. That update is one of the reasons why I included this model in our best drones for sale list.
6. Parrot Bebop
A little more expensive, smaller, faster and smarter than the older AR Drone, the Parrot Bebop is one of the most technologically refined drone of 2017. You can control it with your smartphone – just like the AR Drone – albeit it also comes with a SkyController which lets you control the drone with a real joystick.
That said, the streaming system – a 14MP camera with 180 degrees field of view fisheye lens – remains the most upgraded feature of the Parrot Bebop over the AR Drone 2.0. Thanks to the wide field of view and an advanced processor, the Bebop can take the uncut 14MP image, correct distortions and eliminate the fisheye effect, stabilize the image/video and send it back to your smartphone. The only problem with the system is that it has quite too much lag for smooth first-person-view flying. Combined with the fact that you have to use a smartphone to fly it, the Q500 makes for the last option for professional use in a pool of the Phantom 2 and 3. A lot of people have actually complained about its reliability (take this review from the Verge as an example).
It goes for $499 – a price which can swell to a mammoth $899 if the optional SkyController is included.
7. Walkera QR X350 Pro Drone Without Camera
Coming as a drone without camera but still worth every penny of its whopping $598 price tag is the Walkera QR. It is the type of drone that clearly was designed with both novices and pros in mind. It’s simple to use but also comes equipped with standout features such as the GPS functionality which facilitates automatic landing. On a single charge, it can run for a maximum 25 minutes, just like the Phantom 2 Vision+, and at an above-average speed of 45 miles per hour.
Lack of a camera obviously comes as a massive downside for the X350 Pro but then its unparalleled level of flexibility cancels that out. You can attach a camera of your choice and use the perfectly positioned gimbal to get the perfect shot if you’re a filmmaker, and crazy speed limit maxima if you’re a zipping enthusiast.
You are provided with extra propellers, which you may unfortunately never need, and a compatible camera from Walkera at an extra cost once you make your choice.
8. DJI Inspire 1 Professional Drone
Hello professional videographer! Here’s one for you: the DJI Inspire 1 with 4K Raw Video. You will fall in love with this drone at the very first sight, trust me, especially if you’re into sci-fi movies. It has this eye catching design that chimes in seamlessly with the range of functionalities it has to offer. It’s bigger, cooler and more aesthetically polished than your Phantom 3. Its 4K camera sits on a 360 degree-spinning gimbal, which makes the dual-piloting possible as camera motion is independent of the drone’s movements.
Clearly, it’s not for beginners nor is it for amateur photography. Imagine what you’re going to do with 500GB worth of memory space if you’re going to be shooting your kids playing in the backyard.
The Inspire 1 is one of the best drones for sale on our list and goes for $2900.
9. TBS Vendetta Racing Drone
For drone racing – which is something I doubt you ever thought can be done with drones – there are quite a number of sleek, versatile and high-speed drones such as the Lumenier QAV250 or the Eachine Racer 250 (which we’re going to discuss below) but I’d chose the Vendetta because it sports all of those properties. It can hit limits of 70mph when racing on track or 100 when going down a hill or a cliff and a hard body to encounter the crashing crisis that such high speeds can lead to. The engine can be upgraded, as an added bonus, which means you can replace the original motors with bigger ones to improve the speed and power of your little widget.
At $500, the unit will come with everything you need as a beginner except a controller, battery, charger and first person view (FPV) goggles. A full package could cost $700 on average making it one of the best drones for sale in the racing drones department.
10. Eachine Racer 250
The Racer 250 is a racing drone that would fall marginally in the shadow of the Vendetta on almost all levels except that it comes with everything needed for FPV racing. It’s equipped with its own controller, batteries, charger and the FPV gear for only $360.
It would work for you best if you are a racing novice as it is very easy to learn to fly and, of course, more affordable to lose but ultimately you will want to own a machine of Vendetta’s class.
There are a lot more ready-to-fly drones of this price range out on the market currently, but I would recommend this one due to its flexibility and balanced features.
The Racer 250 is pretty fast and looks great from outside and can last a few months if you race in favourable environments. Just like most other racing drones, however, its framework is composed of light and cheap material but one which will take you through the time you need to learn and perfect your racing skills. Not one of the best drones for sale, but surely one of the cheapest ones.
Best Drones For Sale
These are, according to us, ten of the best drones for sale right now. We are aware that there are other more sophisticated and newer options out there but then our list focused mostly on fairly affordable models and those whose features fall within an average user’s interests. Also, we included in the picture the fact that not everyone knows the first thing about drones, and hence considered the easiest to fly yet most functional models we could find.
Most of them can be found on Amazon while some are exclusively available on their respective manufacturer’s websites.