TOP FIVE DRONES
LEARN ABOUT THE BRAND NEW DJI Mavic which we believe will be landing in our top 5. We will post when we have one!
Hello! We will be reviewing and then making a list of five for drones/UAS/UAVs, quads, or whatever you want to call the flying tools for photography, racing, fun, or whatever. We will consider our own reviews, along with others, sales, feedback, and generally what we think coupled with the public. All the lists will have info about each drone and probably links to tutorials and eventually links to purchase them for the best prices around the net. We are working on multiple lists with categories but there will be one “main” list for the ones we just like the best. If you purchase a DJI product, we would do it directly through DJI. They now have fantastic customer support all over the world and they treat everyone great but owning both the Inspire and the Phantom 3, my opinion is anecdotal. I will also provide links to Yuneec as the top three (which is currently up) will be the Inspire, Phantom 3 Pro/Adv and finally the Yuneec Q500 4K (as we eagerly await the Typhoon H, best of CES). You will save money and I will make a couple in order to fund this and other sites if you click on the links through here as I am not collecting a commission but am passing on the affiliate savings to you through gifts. GO GET YOUR BIRD! 🙂 🙂 🙂 If you purchase your drone through one of the links I provide, you will still be buying it through the respective companies and everything that goes with it but I will send you a 32 or 64 gig class 10 UHS-1 U3 microHD card with adapter (size depends on which drone purchased). High performance cards with super fast write speeds are a must for getting quick and excellent images from the integrated cameras. IMPORTANT: If you purchased a DJI product from us, please send us an e-mail letting us know at firstname.lastname@example.org so we know who you are and where to send it. We will even cover the shipping (and handling 😉 )
THE TOP 5 DRONES! (We are currently waiting on our Yuneec Typhoon H for review and theoretical placement in TOP 5)
#1 DJI Phantom 4
UPDATE: The #1 status of the Phantom 4 is being looked at by our team. It is in fact a wonderful performer when it is working but there have been problems with some of our own units and using anecdotal info from the various forums. Don’t forget to order through our link and then e-mai email@example.com in order to get a free HD card and you will still be ordering from DJI. Happy Flying!
Today, March 14th, 2016 DJI released the Phantom 4 iOS version of the popular DJI GO app to fly this amazing machine. It blows away the Phantom 3. It’s more nimble, its faster when it wants to be. It SHOOTS WAY better than the X3. I would say that it shoots as well as the lower end Inspire V1. I’ve always thought the P3s had an X3 in them that were being held back. If that’s the case, they are not being held back anymore. At this price point, there is not integrated camera that EVEN COMES close to how good this thing shoots. It’s gimbal is beautiful and attatvhed to the body of the bird. It looks almost a little goofy in some pictures, but I can promise you, it IS NOT. It is slick and not as fat as it looks. It feels stronger and a little lighter than the P3. Lighter and stronger is aviation evolution and this is a much bigger jump from the P3 than the P4.
For now we are going to leave it here at #1, and for the price if it can fix the issues that are plaguing it, we might leave it. Let’s also not forget about Yuneec who got over $60 million in their own create collision avoidance technology like the P4 has (sort of as its only straight ahead at 60 degrees) which will be helpful for beginners and advanced users who are trying to set up some shots that require slow low movements near things, especially coupled with the dual sensors. *(We will be reviewing the Yuneec Typhoon H soon an hope to have it in the top 3. Fingers crossed! Also the Phantom 4 has redundant IMUs and Compasses which is amazingly great for safety. More so than most even realize probably. Mixed with the extra sensors, and collision avoidance (which is what I’m calling it because it’s not true obstacle avoidance). I think because I am starting to get a grasp of how DJI works as a company. I deal with Asian culture and this company hasn’t had a chance to be Americanized YET (although its happening), everything is understated. Business wise, I’ve been BLOWN away by projects I thought I was on the lead on because they had extra little safety and redundancy features. I would not AT ALL be surprised if we learn that this is even greater than we think it might be now (some don’t ((haters)) agree) that this is possibly the Macintosh to the LISA Or NEXT using the Apple analogies. Or possibly the P3 was the Macintosh. It is certainly an historical machine that will be an museums I believe. I think the P4 puts the trajectory towards real autonomy and Yuneed too! EXCITED. BEST HOBBY EVER!!! We here hope you have even a 1/4 of the excitement we have over these things and don’t be afraid to show it. Not to rant, but there are a lot of “Debbie Downers” in our hobby. Don’t be a fool and just be cool to people and life well treat you back. These are untouched shots that I took with my own Phantom 4 in bad lighting with no filters and ZERO COLLOR CORRECTION. Also keep in mind in this footage is that it has gone through TWO generation losses before it even looks this good. The original looks about 15-20 percent better.
Back to the Yuneec, within the next two weeks, we here at TFD will be testing the Yuneec Tornado H920 and the BRAND new Yuneec Typhoon H which with it’s Intel RealSense module one many best in shows from major periodicals but currently has a “Under $2000” price point and thats without the RealSense but some other not as good sensory perception. Probably something similar to the P4 out of the box. I have not been a fan personally of the CGO2 or even 3 but the 4 is a GH4 and I’m really excited to see it in action on the Tornado. I can’t imagine it not holding at least a spot on the Top 5. For now, this is what will remain our top list. Please remember if your order “Properly” through DJI from us (or Amazon), you will get a free 32 or 64 (depending on the model) Class 10 UHS1 U3 super fast MicroSD card from a major brand!
#2 DJI Inspire 1 (v2) w/ X3 4K and Inspire Pro with 4K X5 Zenmuse
For now, we are going to leave the Inspire as the #2 bird in the sky as far as we are concerned and that is the DJI Inspire 1 V2 and the Inspire Pro. Pound for pound, dollar for dollar, there isn’t a bird in the sky at this price point that will get you what this can. We will go into greater detail later and every one of the top 5 will be a clickable item with not only a review but tutorials, news, etc. We don’t base our choices solely on quality but what you get for what you spend. The Inspire Pro and even the Inspire 1 are both on the high end of the prosumer market and the Inspire Pro has the much lauded X5 camera which shoots 4k Raw, 2.7K, 1080P and so much more but we are just setting up right now. 🙂 Sometimes it’s just best to show some footage. Here is the Inspire Pro with the X5 (a marked improvement from the X3) in a low light situation with video like a champ.
The other cool thing about the Pro vs the V2 Inspire is that it comes in black and it looks so cool and stealthy. The X3 and the X5 are both extremely capable but if you can afford the extra money, you are really getting a pro camera with the Inspire Pro but you will still be a one percenter of the drone world with the Inspire 1 V2 and the X3! Don’t forget that you can use two people to run the studio in the sky that is Inspire by having someone flying and another operate the camera which has a 360 field of view because the landing gear goes up (as does the coming late April Yuneec Typhoon H) Buy the Inspire 1 V2 and Inspire Pro from DJI by clicking here and get a FREE 64 gig microHD card as described above! CLICK!
#3 DJI Phantom 3 Professional & Advanced (Take advantage of price drops due to the forth-coming Phantom 4)
At this point, you probably think I am just a DJI dealer but I am not. I am just a fan of their products. No matter what happens, DJI will definitely go down in history as making the first affordable easy to fly, ready to fly drone and got the people that were in the RC world and introduced them to a bunch of people from the world of fun, photography, cinematography, new hobbyists, pilots, and many more. The drone revolution has only just begun and it began with the Phantoms. The Phantom was one of the first to use a good action camera like the GoPro and then integrated their own with the Phantom Vision 2+ and now with at CES they dropped the price of the Phantom 3 Standard (P3S), Phantom 3 Advanced (P3A) and Phantom 3 Professional (P3P) and made an already reasonably priced product a bargain. Because of the new pricing strategy, we were tempted and debated putting the Phantom 3 Pro and Advanced at #1. It certainly has a case for it. Many people will call the 4k shooting DJI Phantom 3 Pro, the best prosumer craft in the world. It certainly flies the best in its class. It really defined a whole look that was often duplicated but when you fly a DJI product, you know it. The difference between the Standard (and why it is not listed with the Pro and Advanced) is the absence of “Light Bridge” which is a proprietary wifi system that lets you stream what your Phantom is seeing from outrageously far and amazingly clear 720P to your Android or iOS tabled or phone. The BEST thing is at CES DJI lowered the price of most of their Phantom line. The Standard comes in at a stunning $499 which is pound for pound the best flying you’ll get in the world for the price but you don’t get the Light Bridge which is what really separates the DJI products from the others. Also, they seem to have less “fly-aways” and seem to make their latest products with quality components that keep it well maintained for full time use without major failures unless you do stupid things. The Professional Advanced was dropped down $799 and that still has the 2.7K camera and Light Bridge. Unless you need the 4K, I would recommend this as the perfect sweet spot. But if you need the 4K, or just want it, get the Pro.
Click here to buy the DJI Standard for $499 (DONT FORGET OUR FREE GIFT IF YOU BUY VIA OUR LINK ONLY) Click here to buy the DJI Phantom 3 Advanced for $799 (Plus a free 32 gig microHD card from us) Click here to buy the DJI Phantom 3 Professional for $999! (Plus with the pro you get our free 64 gig microHD card)
#4 Yuneec Q500 4K Typhoon Quadcopter Drone RTF in Aluminum Case with CGO3 Camera, ST10+ & Steady Grip
Yuneec has been threatening DJI’s throne as of late with some quality products. They still aren’t quite there but with the Q500 4K at a price point that is a little lower than some of the DJI 4K quads that have less intelligence and no touch remote like the ST10. Let’s first say that people either love or hate the built in touch screen the ST10. We at TFD love the remote. There is a ton of functionality built into the remote so you don’t have to worry about adding a tablet or a phone to it. Again, some people see this as a benefit while others think it’s not. As I said, the price point is good as is but then you throw in the fact that for example, this set up comes with an extra battery ($100 value), an aluminum case ($120 value), a steady grip cam which you can take the 4k CG03 and put it on the grip and have a full solution for shooting your whatever from the air to the ground with no shake. Add in our 64 gig card and you have yourself a lot of gear to play with at a price point of only $929 and if you want to shed some of the gear it comes with (and you don’t you can save yourself a little). You can save yourself a lot if you get the Q500 that isn’t 4K with the CG02 camera but we don’t recommend that because if the Yuneec has a weaker spot to the the DJI stuff that is out there now, it’s the quality of the camera. Our sources tell us that DJI actually has Sony working on cameras with them but that is not verified.
Click the Amazon link below to get your Q500 4K with all those bonuses at an unbelievable price that was lowered (like DJI did) at CES 2016! Also, if you go through our link and buy the Q500 4K, we will give you a 64 gig quality high speed microHD card that is better and faster than what they send.
#5 Syma X5C
A coupe discussions amongst us for this one. First of all, it’s completely different than anything we have here. It doesn’t have GPS, the camera is absolutely horrid to the point of being almost useless but for learning to turn on a camera while flying. The FPV version is so bad it’s not even worth the $20 more for practice but what IS SO GREAT about this quad that puts it above all the other amazing UASs out there, is that this one will teach you how to be a pilot more than the other ones. The same way crawling is more important to walking than running is. You’ll run with the other ones but let’s learn to crawl and walk first and you’re going to do that just great with this fun machine and the batteries are super cheap so you can keep flying it for hours and you will need to so you can learn so you can jump up to some of the bigger boys. Plus this won’t break. It’s almost difficult to break and when you finally damage it, you can learn on line from the million tutorials that teach you how to change a motor, or solder something to the flight board, or whatever it will just make you able to be more intimate and dangerous with the bird because she is CHEAP at around $50. You know we are not really trying to make money on this site if we are going to be promoting $50 aircrafts but we are here to be real and say what we think and we think that this, for the time being, with some discourse from within that this is our $5 drone because it should be your first one and it should be one you learn in and out for a minim of a month before you pick up the much easier to fly ones above. GO Buy yourself a Syma and learn to fly by CLICKING HERE!
Here is a link to purchase the X5c for around $50 which is about the price you should pay for it. Be careful as some brick and mortar stores and I’ve even seen it at mall kiosks from anywhere from $80 to $250. Not kidding that I saw a mall kiosk guy trying to get $250 and hinting to people that it’s a “Phantom 2” knock off and is almost exactly the same which for reasons I don’t think I need to explain, is untrue. So we recommend this UAS to learn before mastering the more expensive and easier to fly ones. If you can fly this one, you can feel comfortable on a better one. FLY SAFE!