On one side of the coin, the invasion of privacy that can be the result of a neighbor hovering overhead with their new drone is unsettling. The other perspective is apparent the moment you put your own new drone into flight.
Drones are incredibly useful for more than spying on neighbors. Some of the most dramatic images and video come from the perspective of a bird overhead.
Whether looking to expand your photography skills, or just have a bit of fun in the sky, drones are here to stay. Selecting the right drone comes down to some careful considerations.
What to look for in a drone?
The first thing you need to ask yourself is who it’s for.
If the drone is for a child, make sure that you are purchasing a drone specifically designed for a child to fly, as the drones geared towards adults tend to be considerably heavier and more delicate, not to mention more expensive.
The next thing you must ask yourself is, what is its purpose?
If you are in search of photography, first of all, make sure you purchase a drone with a camera installed, as not all of them do.
Then, depending on the type of photography you are planning on doing, you’ll want to make sure it comes with a camera that has a resolution and stabilization to your liking.
If you are just looking for a drone to fly around for pleasure, be sure to check its standard flight time, as depending on the make, drones can last anywhere from 7 to 30 minutes, with their flight ranges also varying drastically.
Then too, if you’re a first-time drone user, accidents can happen, and while your product will likely come with a warranty, some drones are easier to repair than others.
With this in mind, choosing a drone with a brushless motor tend to have a longer lifespan, though brushed motors are more easily repaired.
Best Drones of 2022
With all of this in mind, let’s take a look at the five top-rated drones of 2022.
The DJI mini 3 Pro comes the most recommended for photographers and content creators. with 2 remote control options and a built-in camera and video camera, capturing 4K60 footage with digital zoom. It also guarantees a strong flying performance, with excellent safety features, 3-way obstacle sensors, and a highly rated low-light performance with automated flight modes.
Things to keep in mind, however, are that while it does come with a built-in GPS, it takes a while to determine its location, and coming in a $759, it’s fairly expensive for its relatively small size.
The DJI Mini 2 might be the perfect model for first-time drone buyers, and despite its compact size, it has a lengthy battery life and flight time. With built-in GPS to boot.
However, what does not come installed is any kind of obstacle avoidance programming or a reliable tracking device. And coming in at $449, it too is expensive for a model of its size.
Filmmakers of all experiences will be thrilled to get their hands on the DJI Mavic 3, with a magnificent built-in lens with a 7x optical and 28x digital zoom If that wasn’t enough, it can last up to 46 minutes in the air, with excellent built-in obstacle avoidance and safety features.
On the downside, strong as the quality of the camera is, it does not possess as much storage as one hopes. In addition to being one of the heavier models, it is also one of the most expensive, coming in at a whopping $2,024.
Those looking for truly excellent still photographs will likely be drawn to the DJI Air 2S, with its 1-inch sensor camera and 5.4k video quality. In addition to a lengthy flight time of just over half an hour and a 12km flight radius, it also comes with excellent safety and obstacle avoidance features.
Experienced photographers might find themselves frustrated, however, by the lack of filtered looks, and relatively low storage space, as well as the inability to automatically transfer pictures from the device to your smartphone.
Those with the need for speed will likely find the DJI Avata is just what they need to get their adrenaline jumping. With its easily manageable, one-handed controller, users will feel like they’re part of the action after putting on the accompanying virtual reality glasses, and if you find yourself out of control, its crash-resistant design puts it at low risk for damage.
With that in mind, however, be sure to keep it away from children or irresponsible hands, as its super speed could put others at risk. Then too, coming in at $1,168, fun comes at a price.
Should you be looking for a drone to take breathtaking pictures, fly around in the air, or spy on your family and neighbors (not recommended), there are drones available at a wide array of prices and for all ages.
But with FAA regulations differing from region to region, be sure to check if you’re in a location that requires a license to own and fly a drone, while some models require FAA registration regardless of your location.
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