Top 4 Best Drones Under $500 of 2021: Complete ReviewsAnhK
As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases. This means that if a reader clicks on a link or an image of the product, we may receive a commission. There is no additional cost to you — it helps pay for hosting and server costs. And it does not affect the quality of the content, as we always recommend our readers the best sources.
Would you like a cool drone that you can zip around with and take awesome videos and pictures, but don’t want to pay a fortune? If this is the case, you have come to the right place. This article will discuss 4 of the best drones under $500 you can find on the market. We will wind up with a buyer’s guide to give you an idea of what to look for.
Best Drone Under $500: Reviews
1. RUKO F11Pro Drone
Pros & Cons
This drone from Ruko comes with a lot of top-notch features and great functionality.
One thing that stands out about this drone is that it features a 1,200-meter operational range or just under 4,000 feet. Equally as impressive is that the RUKO F11Pro Drone has 2 high-quality 2500 mAh intelligent batteries, with each providing 30 minutes of flight time, for a total of 60 minutes. The batteries take around 3.5 hours to fully charge.
What also stands out about the RUKO F11Pro is the 4K Ultra-HD picture quality and the 2.9K video quality of the integrated camera, plus a lens that has a field of view of 120 degrees that can be adjusted by 90 degrees. The range is about 300 to 500 meters in live video transmission, depending on the conditions.
The RUKO F11Pro has many features that make it easy and fun to fly. These features include first-person view, auto return, tap fly, headless mode, one key landing and takeoff, hover mode, and more.
Using the controller combined with the high-quality display makes flying this drone simple and enjoyable. Remember that you can exchange or return it for up to 30 days if you are not happy with this model. It also has a 90-day warranty.
2. DJI Mini 2
Pros & Cons
If you are looking for a super high-quality drone with an excellent camera, great batteries, super long-distance range, plenty of features, and a whole lot of durability, the DJI Mini 2 is a good option. Keep in mind that this one costs just under $500, so it will be the most expensive on our list.
The DJI Mini 2 is a truly stunning drone, especially for this price. One standout feature is a 6.2 mile or 10 km transmission range, which means that you can fly it far distances without ever moving. This drone features a battery life of roughly 31 minutes, which will ensure that you can theoretically fly that 10 km distance and back − depending on conditions.
The 12 MP camera can take 4K video at 30 FPS. It also features a 3-axis motorized gimbal to make sure that everything is stable and smooth. This is one reason why this unit is not exactly cheap. This camera also features a 4x digital zoom.
What also stands out is how durable the DJI Mini 2 is, as it is made of some pretty tough materials. It has been designed to take off from altitudes of up to 4,000 meters, and it also has a level 5 wind resistance rating. Between the various camera modes, the different flight features, hover mode, auto return, and more, this has to be one of the best drones for this price point.
Read DJI MINI 2 full review.
3. SIMREX X300C Mini Drone
Pros & Cons
This is a much more affordable drone − it comes in at under $50. It’s not as advanced as either of the others we have reviewed, but it’s a rather impressive machine for the low price.
The SIMREX X300C Mini Drone is extremely small, lightweight, and compact. It can fold up into a neat little package that can easily fit into the palm of your hand, making it an outstanding small unit for when you are on the go.
You get about 10 minutes out of a fully charged battery, with the battery taking about 60 minutes to charge. The SIMREX X300C Mini has an operational range of 45 meters, alright for such an inexpensive unit.
The SIMREX X300C Mini Drone has a dedicated remote controller that allows you to hook up your phone to it, so you can see what the drone camera sees. This drone has a 720P HD camera, which is pretty decent for the price.
There’s a 6-axis gyro flight control system to make flying easier, and in case you lose your orientation, the headless flight mode makes things a bit easier for you. The SIMREX X300C also features a hover mode and a one-key return mode.
4. Potensic D58 Drone
Pros & Cons
This camera drone costs just over $200. It’s got a great camera, several convenient flight modes, and various other nifty features.
What is really cool about the Potensic D58 Drone are all the cool flight modes and features it comes with. First, the orbit mode is pretty neat because the drone can follow you and orbit around your position.
It also features an altitude hold mode, otherwise known as a hover mode, to stay in one single position; it even features a GPS mode.
It features a one-key landing and takeoff function to make flying the Potensic D58 Drone much easier, and you can choose from three speed modes. It also has a one-button return function and out of control protection if you lose control of it.
You get a 4K HD camera, which is quite impressive considering the price of this drone. The camera has multi-angle capabilities. You also get dual batteries for a combined flight time of over 30 minutes.
Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose the Best Drones
Let’s take a look at some of the most important features you should consider when buying a drone.
Drones have vastly different operational ranges. Some of the drones reviewed today can go a couple hundred feet, whereas others can go thousands. It’s a significant consideration to keep in mind.
Just as important as the range is battery life. Based on today’s reviews, you can see that some drones can last for 10 minutes, whereas you might get a full hour out of others. If you get a drone that doesn’t have a great battery, try to go for one that comes with multiple batteries.
If the camera is an essential aspect for you, get a drone that can shoot HD videos, preferably 4K, and HD pictures. Make sure that the drone can also transmit the video from far distances. The best drones will have motorized gimbals to help keep the image steady.
Build and Durability
Drones need to be durable, particularly those that you plan on using outdoors. Your drone should be made of durable yet lightweight materials and have some protection or covers for the propellers. It should also have a decent level of wind resistance.
Flight Modes and Features
You will want to look for hover mode, headless mode, GPS mode, one-key landing and takeoff, auto return, and FPV mode. These are all convenient features that you might like to have.
Drones are a “you get what you pay for” kind of thing. We would recommend investing a decent amount of money because you tend to get way better transmission ranges, battery life, camera quality, and flight features. The DJI Mini 2 is the perfect option for people who want to spend less than $500 but still want a top-notch unit.