Table of Contents
- Best Drones Under 500 Dollars With Camera
- 1)DJI Phantom 3 Standard Quadcopter Drone with 2.7K HD Video Camera
- Read full review of DJI Phantom 3 Standard Quadcopter Drone
- 2)Holy Stone HS300 RC Quadcopter with 120° Wide-angle HD Camera
- 3)DJI Spark Quadcopter (Alpine White) with 3 Batteries
- 4)DJI Phantom 2 Quadcopter (White)
- 5)Parrot Bebop 2 + Black Skycontroller (Red)
- 6)Thrust UAV 1003 Riot 250R Pro Edition FPV Racing
- 7)DJI Phantom 3 Standard Refurbished Unit (Certified Refurbished)
- 8)Armor DJI Phantom 2 Vision Plus Hard Case
- 9)Holy Stone GPS FPV RC HS100 with Camera
- 10)Walkera F120 3D edition racing with Devo 7
Best Drones Under 500 Dollars With Camera
Flying drones is getting increasingly popular with each passing day. People do it all over the world and many of them has made it a hobby. A great experience and brings a lot of joy and some valuable moments that you can save for the rest of your life.
While we are all moving in a fast pace world, taking some time out for relaxing and doing the stuff we love has become essential. It helps us in relaxing and taking the stress off our mind. Moreover, the parents encourage their kids to fly drones because this is considered a healthy activity.
Therefore, you might look towards the best drone for 500 dollars and there are a lot of models available in the market in the respective category. However, not all of them are worth your money. So, here are some models that we have picked for you which, depending on your needs, may be the best purchase.
The DJI phantom 3 standard quadcopter is a masterpiece from the manufacturer. DJI is known for making some best drones and this one is no exception the best photography drone under 500. It comes with a simple control system and fulfills all the expectations that an intermediate level drone flyer may have that are looking forward to capturing the landscape and beauty through such drones. Its design is similar to the other phantom models with fine white plastic body. There are red stripes on all wings and battery goes sliding into the build. With wide landing gear, you have a chance to grab the quadcopter within flight.
The drone comes with a 2.7K camera that helps in recording full HD 1080P videos. You can proceed with capturing at 30 FPS with the help of its 2.8f wide angle lens which provide 94 degree field view. The recording is free of any distortion and stream is smooth.
The DJI drone possesses a smart battery that is similar across all Phantom 3 models. A power packed 4480 mAh battery which provides you up to 25 minutes flight time. Generally, the recorded duration of flight is 20 to 23 minutes.
The control of this model is pretty simple and even a newbie can deal with it. Wi-Fi 2.4 GHz transmission link helps in flying it while the transmission works on a 5.8 GHz band that you can receive on your android or iOS phone. It comes with smart flight functions and the most interesting thing about this quad is that as you select a person or an object, the quadcopter itself will chase it in a circle way and align it in the center. It has the follow me mode and indeed a best drones under 500.
- Controlled with phone or remote
- Maximum 25 minutes flight time
- Wingspan of 590 mm
- Operates from as far as 1000 meters
- 12 MP still cam
- 7K max video resolution
- Weighs 1216g
Read full review of DJI Phantom 3 Standard Quadcopter Drone
Holystone is a widely known drone manufacturer and they have some of the most popular drones in the market. The HS300 RC quadcopter is one of the most appropriate entry level quadcopter that you will find in the market. It comes with a great flight performance, decent camera, sturdy build, and appropriate stability.
The product has a HD 1080P camera capturing videos at 30 frames per second while a 5MP still cam helps you in taking decent pics. The automatic altitude hold allows you to release the throttle stick and you will be able to make drone stable and hovering at current position. The one key return allows quick recovery of the craft while triple protection is also helpful in assuring safety. It has a headless mode with appropriate speed control and an emergency stop. Moreover, one key landing along with a single touch start stop function helps you in flying it efficiently.
The drone is powered by a 2000 mAh battery which provides you around 8 to 12 minutes flight time. There are two batteries 7.4V li-po build which extends the flight time i.e. 2 x 8-12 minutes. The video capturing brings 120 degree wide angle into play. The assembling of drone hardly takes 15 minutes and you are good to fly. This model can be controlled from as much as 150 meters only which is slightly less than desired. The weight is 1.4 pounds and the package come packed with extra accessories, giving you a decent backup.
- 8 to 12 minutes flight time
- 4 pounds weight
- 200 minutes charging time
- 150 meters flying range
- 4 volts li-po battery with 2000 mAh capacity
- 1080P HD camera
DJI has some seriously expensive drones in the market and one of their high end models, the Mavic Pro, is as much as $999. But why are we discussing it here as this is DJI Spark? Well, the reason is that Spark actually shares some technology from the Mavic Pro.
The spark is one of the best drone for 500 dollars and comes with a tech that you will find in a $999 quadcopter. Although everything is certainly not the same but there are some features that are similar. For instance, the obstacle detection is pretty smart with the dual-band GPS for appropriate functioning. It comes with a visual positioning system that helps in making it hover over the ground at a height of around 30 meters.
The two axis motorized gimbal is holding a FHD camera which allows you to record a decent quality video. The bring colored shell and compact frame lowers the intimidation and the new pilots won’t have trouble in flying it.
The design of the product is pretty good and you are likely to love it. It comes with intelligent flight mode and comprehensive controls which help you in creating cinematic videos just by pressing a few buttons. The FHD 1080p cam captures footage at 30 fps and allows you to transmit it live on your device. You can control the drone from a range of 328 feet. The battery allows you to fly the drone up to as much as 16 minutes. There is a gesture recognition in this DJI Spark quadcopter that helps in controlling your drone with the help of gestures from your hands. The GPS and GLONASS assures safe flight of your quadcopter.
The DJI Spark delivers it all to you in a lightweight and compact model. The camera stabilization is pretty awesome while the USB charging and gesture control makes your life very easy. One of the best start up models for the individuals that are looking for aerial photography. However, the flight time can be as low as 10 to 14 minutes and if you are using the app on a small screen then the control can become slightly difficult.
- 1080P FHD camera
- Live transmission of video
- Control range 328 feet
- Gesture recognition feature available
- Smart obstacle detection
- About 16 minutes flight time
DJI Phantom 2 is a remarkable UAV that is packed with features and comes at an affordable price. This drone gives us all we need. Working with a decent propulsion system, new RC, and a compass, you can be sure that it has something unique and extra to it.
The drone has ability to stabilize the footage that is being transmitted from the camera. It helps in capturing great images from the cam and you can obtain steady videos regardless of the speed and angle. The H3 3D gimble helps you in operating the cam. It has a 3 axis brushless motor for appropriate pitching and rolling. You can tilt it at an angle of -130 to +45 degrees. The tilt action is ultra smooth.
The product comes with a GPS autopilot system. There are numerous benefits that it supplies. You can opt for the position holding to make the drone still and hold it at a place as you film. The altitude lock is also there with stable hovering and you can turn all your focus towards the shooting and recording videos.
Set up the one key home function and your drone will return to its original position as soon as the connection is lost. This feature is very helpful because there are instances when you may lose control due to range or battery so setting up this function helps your craft is returning to its original position as soon as the connection between it and the control is lost.
The quadcopter comes with a battery that allows you to fly it for 25 minutes. This quad is a lightweight model that has a wide range of additional hardware available which you can attach to it. Some of its best features include the return to home which helps you in flying it without losing your drone. The model is in-demand which stamps on the fact that this is a quality drone.
- Weighs 2 pounds
- Quick battery change
- 25 minutes flight time
- 5200 mAh battery
- Supports various add-ons such as GoPro Hero 3+
- Safety functions including ‘return to home’
- Regular software updates from DJI
The original Parrot Bebop was in need of some serious improvements and the Bebpop 2 covers almost all of them. The best one is perhaps done in terms of battery and flight time as it goes up to as much as 25 minutes. The construction has been made a little sturdy and the product is a lot more durable than the first bebop. This is a good mid range drone that comes with image and video capturing features. There are various flight modes that will help you.
The positioning of this camera is what will amuse you and you will find it in the center and at the front. It has fish-eye camera with appropriate downward angle which aids you in in capturing the right images from the right angle. It has HD capabilities and takes up to 14 MP photos.
The bebpop 2 is lightweight and sturdy. It has a safe design which is flexible and will stop immediately on an impact. For instance, you run it into your friends arm and your propellers will stop getting power which will save the propeller rash. The quadcopter can be controlled with the help of Android and iOS. However, if you are not a fan of such controllers, the Skycontroller is there for your aid. It is large and improves the range and overall flying feel of the drone. Moreover, it is also a factor that accounts for the price of this quadcopter.
The quadcopter comes with a strong GPS and GLONASS. The decent images with HD videos and quality build makes it a great option. For this quad, flight time is also good and as this model is lightweight you can carry it around on trips easily.
- 300 meter range
- Around 25 minutes flight time
- 1 pound weight
- 14 MP camera, captures FHD 1080P videos
- Wide angle lens
- Comes with advanced safety features
- Some interesting flight modes
The Thrust UAV 1003 Riot 250R Pro is an advanced drone and it is recommended that if you are buying your first ever drone then you better take a look at other UAV available in this list. The body frame is made up of carbon fiber with side wall skirts manufactured using polycarbonate. It reflects the strong build of the model and also allows the inside LED light system to work at its best by showing all the colors glowing through it. The system of this machine can be programmed to display the right light indication system and colors. So, when you are about to race your drones, you can use the right lights for identifying your craft.
The quad comes assembled and there is a guidance system pre-installed in it which helps you in getting used to the UAV. One can customize it and remove the extra elements that you feel may hinder your working with ease. You can connect the flight controller with your computer to make certain adjustments required but for that you need to be aware about the programming of such controls (although it isn’t tough but for a newbie it can be just a little too much as it is a racing quadcopter). All the necessary instructions can be found on their official website thrust-uav.
For the racing drone, the quadcopter is very easy to manipulate. In case that you want to replace some parts, you can easily access and change them despite the fact that they are closely connected to the board. Being a pilot, all you need to attach is the antenna to your quadcopter that comes along and hit the lights to fly your craft. To make the receiver installation easy, you can remove the top plates.
Plug in the battery to power up the racer and you will find that everything has come to life. This power packed UAV comes with easy shooting options and the on-screen display provides instant feedback with steady stream along with flying information which include the flight mode, battery, flight time, and arming status.
- Integrated flight system ARF FPV racer
- Beta flight software compatibility
- Customizable control
- Multi-shot enabled
- Durable carbon fiber frame
- Swift ccd run cam
- 49 customizable LEDs
- Strong antenna connection
- 75+ mph speed
- 5 inch shatter proof props
- 4S Li-Po batteries
Read full review here Thrust UAV 1003 Riot 250R Pro Edition FPV Racing
The DJI is one of the best drone manufacturers in the industry and that come up with some amazing drones. However, the DJI Phantom 3 is in demand and for some people it can be a bit costly. However, the certified refurbished models are available to you and here is a refurbished Phantom 3.
The product has all phantom 3 features and capabilities with things running smoothly. They are tested and only then it becomes a certified model. It sets high performance standards and overall flying this drone is a treat. The phantom 3 comes with a 2.7K video capturing cam that captures 12 MP still images and gives you a 720P HD video stream. It has GPS assisted flight system and various flying modes. Moreover, the product comes with intelligent battery which has a 25 minutes fly time and comes with a control. You can also use it with the DJI app. The transmission distance is 500 meters (1000 meters clear and unobstructed).
- Great newbie quadcopter
- 25 minutes flight time
- 1000 m unobstructed 500m average distance
- DJI wifi video transmission
- GPS module
The phantom 2 vision plus is a model that comes to your aid if you are looking for an enhanced phantom. This right here is essentially a case for it with airtight build and waterproof construction. The model is virtually indestructible and the hard case will protect it from almost anything. The precision cut foam makes it easy for you to place things and keeps stuff safe and secure for you. It has an efficient design which aids in easy access and is one of the most appropriate cases for travelling.
The product is made up of American military standard so it delivers premium quality to you. This is tested by DJI pro pilots and is all weather case so that your drone won’t get damaged.
- Rugged case
- Virtually indestructible
- Precision cut foam for placement
- Designed for easy access
- Convenient for travelling
- American built with US military specs
The Holy Stone HS100 is another great item by the company and comes with several features. It is a quadcopter that has a highly advanced GPS system which improves your flight experience. It adds a number of different options to your flight which include the return home operation, follow me so that the drone follows you or an object, headless mode, altitude hold for stable standing, and one key takeoff and landing.
There is also an emergency stop which will immediately cut off power to props. It is to assure the safety of drone and individuals around it. Even if you are flying at a remote area in perfect conditions, there are a few things that we can’t control and they can lead to a few emergencies.
The HS100 is compatible with 3D VR. It is said to be used by individuals that are 16 years or older in age. However, some younger kids may also use it but i recommended that you must fly under the supervision of an elder person for at least a few flights before they can get fluent with it.
As far as the aerial photography is concerned, it may not be the best drone that you will find in this list but is good enough to give you a view of the surroundings. The fact that the smart GPS system is integrated gives it a serious edge and it truly depends on what you are looking for in a drone as you think of picking this model.
The flying range for this drone is said to be 500 meters which, when unobstructed, goes up to 1500+ meters. In case that you go out of range or the signals become weak, or even if the transmission is cut off, the GPS features help this drone and it will return safely to you. With an average flight time of 12 to 15 minutes, it pretty much satisfies the expectations as this is neither too short nor too long but considered alright as you take a look at the drone and its price range.
- 12 minutes flight time
- 3 to 6 hours taken for charging
- 2500 mAh modular battery with 3.7V output
- 720P HD camera
- 8 GB card for storing all your aerial footage
- 500 meters range for control
- 150 meters range for WiFi video transmission
- Smart flight modes
Walkera F120 is a drone that is available to you under $400 and is a great one to start with for people looking for best 500 dollar drone. A decent model that is designed for racing purpose. This model is a sturdy built RC plane that can bear some crashes and failures and will still be up and operational (though a little maintenance might be required for some seriously hard hits). As it is labelled to be a racing drone, infact pretty quick in flight and comes with some serious acceleration ability.
The drone supports some common accessories that come in UAV racing games such as Headplay goggles and you may add a GoPro in the slot to experiment. The control can be customized and you can change its perimeters with the application that you can install in your smartphone. The Devo 7 controller makes your life easy while racing this drone and high speed chases become easier with it.
When purchasing the racing drone, you need to take a look at the pilot skills as well as you search for agility and pace in quadcopter. The Walkera F210 3D provides it to you and is one of the best drones for individuals that look forward to purchasing a racing UAV under $500. The best thing about it is that even the seasoned racers can benefit from it due to its quickness and sturdy build. It is smooth and fast and comes with an anti-shock design. The CD for controller with quick start and user manual is there to help you in learning about the quadcopter.
The FPV experience with this machine is awesome. It has a 5.8 GHz channel on which it streams live video with the help of its 700 TVL camera. It has a 120 degree wide viewing angle and has the ability to be tilted and shifted to suit your racing requirements.
The 4s 1300 mAh 40C battery gives you a good flight time with this racer drone being capable to be taken aerial for around 5 to 9 minutes. The duration depends on your flight settings and style.
However, the machine does not possess any safety features such as GPS and associated flight measures including return home function.
- Comes ready to fly
- Devo 7 controller makes racing easier for you
- Li-Po batteries
- GoPro slot
- Customizable flight controller
- Motors can rotate in both directions
- Speed of more than 30 mph with going 50 mph in clear conditions
- 90 minutes charging time
- 120 degree wide angle 700 TVL camera
So, these are some best drones for $500 and the list includes some amazing regular photography models as well as the racing UAVs. Make sure that you figure out what you need before you get into the market and buy a drone. For me, the pick of the day is Phantom 3 as I am more into the photography and have a flexible budget. Which one is yours?