Best Drones Under 500

best drones under 500

best drones under 500

There are many good drones under $500 that can easily cope with any flying task. Haven’t you decided yet whether you want to participate in drone racing or record videos? Are you looking for a drone which has numerous useful features and excellent flight performance? Among the best drones under 500 with camera below, you’ll surely find professional and high-quality models.

What Is the Best Drone Under 500?

Drones under $500 are flight-ready, functionally balanced quadcopters with excellent flight characteristics, advanced component parts and remote controller. They feature built-in GPS, well-stabilized cameras and are capable of flying in difficult weather conditions.

A wide range of autonomous flight modes and intelligent shooting modes help the pilot during the flight. That is why these drones are universal models on the market. They are suitable for any age and flying skills.

top 3 best drones under 500

I would recommend trying DJI Phantom 3 Standard for high-quality, standard DJI drones functions and cost reduction. Beginners will like various features and shooting/flight modes in Holy Stone HS 700D. UPair One 4K is popular for a good camera quality and flight performance.

Best Drones Under 500 in 2019

I wrote these drone reviews considering shooting quality, the variety of functions and modes as well as flight characteristics. Any of the top drones under 500 is a good option for investing in aerial photography or FPV basics. For your convenience, I have identified the most rational area for their use.


1. UPair One 4K

upair one 4k best drones under 500 View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Intelligent flight modes
  • Wide-angle camera with image stabilization
  • FPV flight controller
  • Altitude hold/hover
  • Excellent flight time
Cons-
  • Not found
 

The U-shaped design forms the fuselage and the PVC composite construction of the drone. A 120° HD camera with an adjustable gimbal is capable of shooting 4K videos at 25fps with 12MP photos.

It allows you to stream live video to a 7-inch LCD screen with a responsive LED controller. The average transmission distance is 1700 feet; the maximum transmission distance is 2800 feet. UPair flies up to 19 minutes due to a capacious quick-charge battery.

The drone hovers steadily and holds the altitude. Moreover, it is easy to control. The enhanced GPS locker has 8 satellites with a search for the exact location and auto-return mode when a signal is lost.

These features will not allow the device to get lost and make it the best 4k drone under 500. You won’t need to recalibrate your model due to dual module compass.

Follow Me and Headless modes, one-touch Take-off and Landing, Flight Planning functions and waypoints path system make the drone easy to operate. UPair is fast and maneuverable due to brushless motors. It supports micro SD cards up to 32GB.


2. DJI Phantom 3 Standard

dji phantom 3 standard best drones under 500 View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Autonomous/Intelligent Flight modes
  • High-quality real-time HD camera
  • Remote control
  • GPS/GLONASS positioning
  • Free DJI Go app
Cons-
  • No flight autonomy with obstacle detection
  • Can't be flown indoor
  • Requires Wi-Fi connection
 

The Phantom drone has a modern design, landing gear and LEDs. This model features a remote controller with the help of the mobile app and a Return-to-Home button.

The transmission range is up to 3280 feet. A removable wide-angle HD camera with a 3-axis gimbal stabilizer supports 4K video at 30fps and 12MP photos. The drone's video flow is streaming in real-time on your smartphone in HD 720P.

The intelligent capacious battery provides up to 25 minutes of flight at a maximum speed of 57.6 km/h. Built-in GPS and an automatic flight assistant will record the take-off and the flight pattern, analyze the battery performance and set safe flight limits at a certain distance from the transmitter.

The advanced Follow Me, Return Home, Waypoints and Point of Interest modes make this model easy to operate. It is the best video drone under 500 suitable for professional purposes and easy to operate due to the remote control and mobile app navigation.


3. Yuneec Mantis Q

yuneec mantis q best drones under 500 View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Intelligent flight modes
  • 12МP camera that can be tilted
  • Good flight characteristics
  • Voice/Gesture Control feature
  • GPS/Flight Stabilization Technologies
Cons-
  • No 4К image stabilization
  • No additional battery
  • Could work better in Obstacle Avoidance mode
 

Yuneec Mantis Q is a thin and foldable quadcopter which has a durable case and weighs less than a pound. The model is available in five colors.

This drone provides 33 minutes of flight at speeds over 44 mph (in Sport mode). The transmission range is up to 0.93 miles. The drone can be operated with the help of smartphone, remote controller or voice/gesture control functions.

The automatic flight modes, such as Journey, Point of Interest and Orbit Me as well as face detection, tracking and auto-return home functions, allow you to get amazing videos and photos during the flight.

This is the best drone with camera under 500 for travel with all control options, so it can be recommended for all flight skill levels.


4. Rabing RC

rabing rc best drones under 500 View Prices on eBay
Pros+
  • Autonomous Modes
  • High-quality ultra-wide angle camera
  • Good flight time/speed
  • Dual GPS positioning system
  • Intelligent features
Cons-
  • Not the best drone for learning
  • Short range of Bluetooth
  • Overexposed images taken in daylight
 

Rabing RC has a 16-megapixel Sony CMOS camera with a fisheye lens and a 169º field of view. 1080p video is recorded at smooth 60fps.

A quad-core processor with a 3-axis electronic image stabilization system eliminates vibration and defecting. Live video is transmitted to a smartphone in real-time at 984 feet.

If you use remote control, it can be transmitted up to 1968 feet. The max speed is 26 mph. The flying time is up to 20 minutes. This quadcopter has many advanced features, for example, Visual

Tracking tracks the object by locking it into the center, freeing up your hands.

GPS with dual positioning system is useful indoors and outdoors. One-touch Auto-Return, Altitude Hold and Take-off/Landing modes make it easier to operate.

Rabing RC is one of the top drones under 500 for dynamic shooting, although it is not ideal for learning. Those who have at least minimal flight skills will be able to experience responsiveness and maneuverability with stable hovering.


5. Holy Stone HS 700D

holy stone hs 700d best drones under 500 View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Autonomous/Intelligent Flight modes
  • Adjustable HD camera
  • Good transmission range/flight time
  • Powerful and silent brushless motors
  • High-quality and durable assembly
Cons-
  • The camera is not gimbal-mounted
  • No Speed Switch
  • No Obstacle Avoidance mode
 

The durable case created in a minimalistic portable design is made of high-quality plastic with metal supports. The wide-angle camera takes 12MP photos and records 1080p video at 25fps. Due to an auto-return feature and max control range of 3280ft, HS700 will return home whenever it runs out of power or loses a connection even if it is out of range.

The capacious battery provides up to 20 minutes of flight. With Follow Me mode and GPS, the drone automatically follows the pilot.

Headless mode, one-touch Take-off/Landing, LED lights will help beginners. A user-friendly remote controller connects to a mobile device to transmit live video. Powerful brushless motors provide stable, silent flight even in strong wind.

This device is responsive and maneuverable for all flight skill levels. It is the best drone under 400 suitable for those who are on a budget. Its performance is impressive and its features can compete with more expensive flagships.


6. Wingsland M5

wingsland m5 best drones under 500 View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Autonomous flight modes
  • GPS Assisted Hover
  • Shake reducing structure
  • Brushless motors
  • All necessary in one kit
Cons-
  • Camera could be better
  • Short range in the app
  • No Obstacle Avoidance mode
 

Wingsland M5 has an appealing design and provides a complete FPV experience for beginners due to GPS-Assisted Hover. An optical flow sensor ensures stable, accurate flight with altitude hold. The built-in 720p camera shoots at 25fps and has a slightly narrow 63º lens viewing angle.

Live video is streamed to the LCD screen with a LED controller. The drone can be controlled by remote control or an Android/iOS app. If you use a smartphone or tablet, the control range is only 328 feet. When using a remote controller, the maximum range is 1640 feet.

The maximum speed is up to 26 mph due to brushless motors with a flying time of up to 17 minutes. Wingsland also has such modes as Point of Interest, Auto Take-off/Landing, Follow Me and Return to Home.

M5 is the best video drone under 500 for beginners with the necessary autonomous and intelligent features to practice flight and shooting skills.


7. Hubsan H 501S Pro

hubsan h 501s pro best drones under 500 View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Autonomous flight modes
  • 3MP HD camera
  • Excellent flying time
  • All necessary in one kit
  • 6-axis gyroscope
Cons-
  • Camera could be better
  • Lack of documents
  • Bad control if the battery is low
 

Hubsan H501S is a stylish, lightweight and durable drone. Due to built-in GPS, you can hold altitude and set a route with the help of a mobile app. The model features the 6-axis gyro stabilization system and Headless mode which allow you to easily maneuver the device by adjusting the flight route.

The drone records high-quality 1080p video at 30fps due to a first-class CMOS sensor. The camera is connected to a video transmitter for live streaming without delay to the 4.3-inch display built into the controller.

The one-button Return Home function will automatically work when the battery is low. Follow Me mode makes the drone an excellent tracking device. Long-lasting brushless motors provide up to 0.18 miles of transmission range and up to 20 minutes of flight.

This is one of the most powerful and durable drones under 500 for beginners due to the GPS lock system, which works well on transmitting real-time videos.


8. Parrot Bebop 2

parrot bebop 2 best drones under 500 View Prices on eBay
Pros+
  • Autonomous flight modes
  • Panoramic HD camera
  • FPV/VR compatibility
  • High range with controller
  • Fully customizable
Cons-
  • Video degrades at a distance
  • Additional paid features
  • Touch response delay
 

Parrot Bebop is a lightly-built, small-scale aerodynamic device with a bright LED. Its halves are connected by shock-absorbing rubber balls to reduce vibration. Being the best video drone under 500, it captures 1080p RAW video and detailed PNG/JPEG pictures through the wide-angle 170° fisheye lens with 14MP and 8GB memory card.

Three-axis digital stabilizer ensures smoothness. Adjusting camera ISO/diaphragm is possible through the remote. A capacious battery will provide almost 25 min. of aerial activity with 38 mph velocity.

The device is waterproof, with potent engines opposing the wind. The phone app enables live video broadcasting and controls many parameters: rise/fall speeds, horizontal flight, rotation. The paid premium application gives additional handling, including Follow Me.

For maximum FPV experience and a 1.2-mile range, use a Skycontroller and a VR headset. It is the best camera drone under 500 due to stable hovering, altitude hold, taking off/landing with one click.


9. Walkera Aibao

walkera aibao best drones under 500 View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Augmented reality games
  • Unique wide-view camera
  • Decent operation time/range
  • FPV broadcasting of live video
  • Stable and responsive flight
Cons-
  • Misbehaving app
  • Blurry video during maneuvers
  • Requires a VR headset
 

An amazing novelty in the industry with a small drone price as a bonus. Using the mounted-in camera, this model creates augmented reality games.

Add a VR headset and the corresponding app to enjoy these: Racing (a cyber race on the background of your real location), Combat (a virtual weapon for fighting enemy aircraft), Collection (collecting virtual tokens in real surroundings).

The camera records with a 100° cone of vision and the Sony matrix records 4K footage at 25fps or takes 16MP pictures. The live image is broadcasted to your preferred gadget. The 5200 mAh battery ensures 18 minutes of operation distancing to 1.25 miles.

The device hovers stably with immediate control reaction, therefore it suits amateurs or experienced pilots. The AR games make this option the best drone under 400 and an amazing quadrocopter for beginners practicing flights and photography, and equally so for experts who wouldn’t mind trying AR games.


10. Eachine Wizard X 220 FPV

eachine wizard x 220 fpv best drones under 500 View Prices on eBay
Pros+
  • Powerful motors
  • HD camera 700TLV
  • Good speed/maneuverability
  • Advanced settings
  • Everything you need in a box
Cons-
  • Inside is a fiberglass frame
  • Without glasses/screen
  • Without GPS navigation
 

Eachine Wizard X220S has the best racing drone reviews under 500 in the RTF version. Ultra-light carbon fiber frame with front and rear LED backlight protects internal components well.

The bundle has a wide-angled HD camera in a rubberized case. There is an additional fixturing as well if you want to add Runcam 3 or even GoPro.

New powerful motors provide an excellent result of traction to weight ratio of 7.6 times and speed up to 68 mph. The engines are mounted on damping rubber, which reduces overall vibration. It has an acrobatic operation mode and a stabilized one.

The activity duration and control range vary noticeably in different environments. The highest productivity is 10 minutes at approximately a mile on the battery and remote that came in its kit.

In general, you get an excellent ready-made kit with the best racing drone under 200 for beginners willing to exercise with controller settings and FPV racing.


11. 3DR Solo

3dr solo best drones under 500 View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Standalone/smart features
  • Ideal for GoPro with its mount
  • Good flight performance
  • Simple, clear controls
  • Full-featured application
Cons-
  • Discontinued without updates
  • No collision avoidance
  • Cardan not included
 

The top option among cameraless drones under 500 optimized for the GoPro, with large high-output engines and a universal mount for payload. The sturdy plastic case is decorated with corner LEDs. Having an on-board computer with a frequency of 1GHz, the model is sensitive to controls and stable.

One processor is installed in the controller, being responsible for configuring the camera. Another one is in the quadrocopter, it distributes the computing load, focusing on stability.

A powerful gamepad-style remote is user-friendly and quick to react. With the velocity limit at 55 mph, the drone operates for 22 minutes below 1.2 miles.

This is a smart machine with GPS, good hovering, altitude retention, and many support functions: Selfie, Orbit, Follow Me. Cable Cam mode provides flexible connection via HDMI. One-click taking off/landing and engine stop is enabled.

Beginners will appreciate the ease of learning and piloting. It is widely used among drones 500 dollar limit for semi-professional photography or GoPro admirers.


12. Traxxas 7908 Aton

traxxas 7908 aton best drones under 500 View Prices on Amazon
Pros+
  • Many advanced features
  • Stable fixture for different cameras
  • Battery life
  • 3 modes for different experiences
  • LED backlight high visibility
Cons-
  • Without a camera
  • It is difficult to control with a smartphone
  • Long recharge time
 

It is the best GoPro drone under 200 with a rigid composite frame. The model is powerful and full-size, equipped with a 2-axis removable suspension and a fixture for popular GoPro, Xiaomi, etc.

It received 3 operation modes. Photo is more stable due to the speed/maneuverability decrease. Sport gives access to the top speed of 50 mph. Expert mode configures user settings.

Safety is maintained by air brakes that stop and hover the machine. The large capacity battery sets it among the top drones under 500, allowing 25 minutes of operation and returning the device upon discharging.

The range is 984 feet on covered brushless motors. It is easy to set up/calibrate and manipulate thanks to six-axis flight stability. Tricks or loops are performed by pressing one button. Advanced racers will appreciate the dual-mode GPS, Flight Link (setting the radius of the geofence, the ceiling of flight, controlling the speed), software compatible with the Flight Planner.

Versatile and multifunctional, this option is the best drone for under 500 for various kinds of removable cameras. Beginners will appreciate the multitude of convenient features, and professionals will appreciate its maneuverability and speed.


List of 12 Best Drones Under 500

Image Name Features  
UPair One 4K
UPair One 4K
OUR CHOICE
  • Intelligent flight
  • Wide-angle camera
  • FPV controller
Check PRICE
force 1 u 45w blue jay best cheap drone
DJI Phantom 3 Standard
PROFESSIONAL
  • Autonomous/smart flight
  • HD camera
  • Remote control
Check PRICE
Yuneec Mantis Q
Yuneec Mantis Q
FOR SELFIES
  • Smart flight modes
  • 12MP camera with a tilt angle
Check PRICE
Rabing RC
Rabing RC
DYNAMIC SHOOTING
  • Standalone modes
  • Wide-view camera
Check PRICE
Holy Stone HS 700D
Holy Stone HS 700D
FOR BEGINNERS
  • Adjustable HD camera
  • Good operation range/time
Check PRICE
Wingsland M5
Wingsland M5
  • GPS Assisted Hover
  • Anti-shake design
Check PRICE
Hubsan H 501S Pro
Hubsan H 501S Pro
AFFORDABLE
  • 3MP HD camera
  • Impressive flight duration
Check PRICE
Parrot Bebop 2
Parrot Bebop 2
  • Panoramic HD camera
  • FPV/VR compatibility
Check PRICE
Walkera Aibao
Walkera Aibao
  • Wide-view camera
  • Decent operation time/range
Check PRICE
Eachine Wizard X 220 FPV
Eachine Wizard X 220 FPV
FOR RACING
  • Powerful motors
  • 700TLV HD Camera
  • Good maneuverability
Check PRICE
3DR Solo
3DR Solo
FOR GOPRO
  • Perfect for GoPro with GoPro Mount
  • Good flight performance
Check PRICE
Traxxas 7908 Aton
Traxxas 7908 Aton
  • Stable gimbal for cameras
  • Battery capacity
Check PRICE

How to Choose Drone Under 500?

The majority of options for this request will be flight-ready kits with several upscale features, robust assembly, and at least a basic level of flight control via GPS positioning.

Quality of Photo and Video

1 best drones under 500

Most options have an HD camera mounted but allow setting up action cameras like GoPro. The resolution of digital photography is determined by the megapixel count and reaches 12-16MP.

Footage quality can start from 1080p and allow you to get 4K. Opt for purchasing devices with a mounted high-resolution camera plus an electronic or mechanical stabilizer.

There are cameras that broadcast live video or FPV, useful for operating them through a smartphone/controller. Having a live video stream enables the use of a virtual reality headset or FPV glasses that give a first-person view of the flight.

Such drones can also transfer images or footage via Wi-Fi to your gadget or built-in display. Obviously, when you buy drones of this type, make sure your current device is powerful enough for smooth operating and image transition.

Flight and Design Characteristics

2 best drones under 500

Battery life – you get approximately 15-25 minutes in the air. This scope is conditioned by the existence of drone variations ranging from racing to selfie cameras. Use bundled high capacity batteries, better if they don't have a long charging time.

Control range – when using a local controller, the range decreases compared to Wi-Fi or a mobile device. The best drone with camera under 500 normally reaches slightly above a mile. The larger the range, the better it is for the user. Unless you’re new to it and risk losing control, then the shorter range is preferable.

Speed values depend on your flight and shooting preferences, especially for speed sports. Racing drones develop a 75mph velocity. Choose an option with minimum 2 shift modes and brushless motors for that.

The drone design affects its controls, maneuvering and transportation. The greater the weight and size, the faster its operation will drain the battery. However, bulkier drones can easier withstand the wind without drifting in flight. Select a machine you can easily balance and maneuver.

Additional Features

3 best drones under 500

Accurate and easy control also provides stable hovering, even when you’re releasing the sticks on the remote. The best drones under 500 with camera can have functions of GPS positioning, detection/prevention of obstacles, internal stabilization of the gyroscope and control of auxiliary flight with autonomous modes.

These are one-button take-off/landing, auto-return to the specified home coordinates. The Follow Me mode forces the machine to get hooked to the controller. Some may cruise between two points along a programmed path. Such auxiliary features turn piloting into an easy and enjoyable task.

Intelligent shooting modes. Most often their purpose is clear from the name: Orbit, Follow Me (the machine continues shooting while following, maintaining centering and distance), Landmark, Visual Tracking, Selfies and many others. Video clips filmed using these modes look like pre-staged and more professional.

Gesture/voice control modes can provide an entertaining experience and significant ease in shooting and navigation. Most often, a small list of short predefined commands that need to be mastered is already wired into the drone.


Ann Young

Hi there, I'm Ann Young - a professional blogger, read more