Looking to buy the best quadcopter on the market? Then you’ve come to the right place! This table has our top recommendations for best quadcopters and best drones for consumers across all level of flying ability and budget. If you’re just starting out, one of the best quadcopters to learn to fly on is the $50 Syma X5C quadcopter. Once you’ve mastered the basics of flying and want to expand your horizons, the DJI Phantom 3 drone is the best all around option for aerial HD videos. If you’re a creative professional or otherwise unconstrained by budget, the DJI Inspire 1 offers the most advanced technical features and highest quality video performance in the consumer level quadcopter market. Of course, there are plenty of other great brands and models out there so please check out our best quadcopter recommendations in the table below, and take a look at our in-depth quadcopter reviews for all these models!
Best Quadcopters for Beginners
|Cheerson CX-10||Estes Proto X Nano||Hubsan X4 H107L||Syma X5C||UDI U818A|
|Type||Nano Quad for Indoor Flying||Nano Quad for Indoor Flying||Small Quad for Indoor or Outdoor Flying||Mid Size Quad for Indoor or Outdoor Flying||Mid Size Quad for Indoor or Outdoor Flying|
|Price||$20 at Amazon.com||$30 at Amazon.com||$40 at Amazon.com||$50 at Amazon.com||$80 at Amazon.com|
|Size||1.65" x 1.65" (4 x 4cm)||1.8" x 1.8" (4.5 x 4.5cm)||2.4" x 2.4" (6 x 6cm)||12" x 12" (31 x 31cm)||16" x 16" (41 x 41cm)|
|Weight||0.4oz (12g)||0.4oz (12g)||1.3oz (36g)||3.6oz (103g)||5.6oz (160g)|
|Flight Time||6-8 Minutes||6-8 Minutes||7-9 Minutes||7-9 Minutes||7-9 Minutes|
|Video||None||None||None||720p HD||480p SD|
Best Quadcopters for HD Video and Aerial Photography
|DJI Phantom 3 Standard||DJI Phantom 3 Advanced||DJI Phantom 3 Professional||3DR Solo Drone||DJI Inspire 1|
|Type||Mid-Large Quad for Outdoor Flying||Mid-Large Quad for Indoor or Outdoor Flying||Mid-Large Quad for Indoor or Outdoor Flying||Mid-Large Quad for Outdoor Flying||Large Quad for Indoor or Outdoor Flying|
|Price||$700 on Amazon.com||$1,000 on Amazon.com||$1,250 on Amazon.com||$1,400 on Amazon.com (with gimbal - $1,000 without)||$2,700 on Amazon.com|
|Review||DJI Phantom 3 Review||DJI Phantom 3 Review||DJI Phantom 3 Review||3DR Solo Review||DJI Inspire 1 Review|
|Size||16" x 16" (40 x 40cm)||16" x 16" (40 x 40cm)||16" x 16" (40 x 40cm)||18" x 18" (46 x 46cm)||30" x 30" (75 x 75cm)|
|Weight||2.7lbs (1.2kg)||2.75lbs (1.2kg)||2.75lbs (1.2kg)||3.9lbs (1.8kg) with Gimbal and GoPro||6.5 lbs (2.9kg)|
|Flight Time||20-25 Minutes||20-25 Minutes||20-25 Minutes||16-18 minutes||16-18 Minutes|
|Video||2.7K HD||4K HD||4K HD||4K HD (with GoPro)||4K HD|
As you’re making your decision, keep in mind what you want to do with your new quadcopter – is it a gift for a friend? Are you just buying it to have fun? Do you want to use your quadcopter for video? By identifying your needs and usage you can narrow down your choices considerably and therefore make a better and easier decision and the best quadcopter for you.
If you are on a limited budget or brand new to flying, then the Hubsan X4 quadcopter is a great option . It packs a punch and is very zippy, and you can buy it for about $40 without a video camera or $50 with the integrated HD video camera. If you don’t want to spend much AND you’re looking for a really small quadcopter (i.e. a nano quad or micro quadcopter), then check out the Estes Proto X. At just $30 it is one of the cheapest models you can buy, and it is a ton of fun! Great stocking stuffer or anytime present.
If you have a few more dollars to spend, then the Blade Nano QX is the way to go as it offers an amazing flight experience; super stable, extremely responsive, and very agile. It also offers a built in hover mode and collision detection, which is helpful for those new flyers out there. At about $90 it is a bit pricier, but it is a great quadcopter to learn on and replicates the feel of the DJI Phantom series but on a much smaller scale.
DJI is by far the quadcopter market leader and it owes its success to the Phantom line of quadcopter. The Phantom is the Cadillac of consumer quadcopters, offering video capability, GPS integration, precise control and smoothness, and ability to program waypoints and have the quadcopter operate nearly autonomously. The Phantom models are serious pieces of technology with professional capabilities, but packaged into a very easily understandable and usable interface. Highly recommend it to anyone interested in doing amateur or professional aerial video work. The Phantom comes in various different options:
DJI Inspire 1 ($2,700) – DJI’s latest quadcopter offers full 4K video filming capability, a super high tech gimbal to keep your shots smooth, and a remarkable transforming design that keeps the quadcopter legs out of the shot. Highly maneuverable and with full FPV capability built in, the Inspire 1 is the best quadcopter on the market for video recording right now – but it does come at a steep price!
DJI Phantom 3 Professional/Advanced/Standard ($1259/$1029/$799) – The Phantom 3 lineup comes with three options – all three have integrated HD cameras and gimbals, but the Professional and Advanced have better positioning systems, transmission distance, and remote controls than the Standard. Additionally, the Professional is the only model that offers full 4K HD video. We recommend the DJI Phantom 3 Professional for most folks, though if 4K video is not a requirement then you can save the ~$250 and go for the Advanced. The Standard is only recommended if you’re on a strict budget, as while it looks the same physically it really lacks some important features that are on the Advanced and Professional.
On the even higher end, the DJI Spreading Wings S1000 offers professional level solutions for aerial filming. It is the best quadcopter (actually an octocopter!) for high end filming and photography.
If you already have a GoPro camera, then a great option is the 3DR SOLO Drone. The SOLO is roughly comparable to a DJI Phantom, but 3DR decided to stick with the GoPro + gimbal setup that the older Phantoms had, before DJI switched to integrated video systems. The SOLO also packs some really neat and useful software features, like Orbit, Follow, Cable Cam, and Selfie – freeing you up from actively controlling the drone and enabling super smooth creative shots!
There are tons of other models though, so if you need any advice about what is the best quadcopter for your needs and at your price point, just shoot me an email and I’ll be sure to respond to you ASAP! Happy Flying!