August 17, 2017
The latest post from your Facebook friend showed an aerial photo from a drone of their entire family and you want one for yourself.
Before you go sinking hundreds, even thousands, into a piece of tech that is very likely to come crashing down to earth at some point in its lifetime, allow me to suggest taking the responsible baby step and getting a mini drone instead.
That way, you can ensure this hobby is the right one for you (e.g. did you know you need to register with the FAA to fly anything that weighs more than 0.55lbs?) before you go banking the break on something doomed to suffer the same fate as Oceanic Flight 815.
Here are the 3 mini drones I'd consider checking out:
Rabing's Mini Drone is the least “mini” of the drones on this list, but it features collapsable propeller arms that allow it to fold up into a much more compact package. It'll still fit in your pocket, though it's (relatively) larger size allows Rabing to pack in features you'd normally find on larger, more expensive drones.
The ability to use your smart phone or tablet as a real-time viewfinder that can simultaneously shoot photos and videos makes this an incredible buy at just $49.99.
Coming in at a price of $99 automatically makes this a runner-up to Rabing, though the SKEYE Mini Drone is still a great choice for a first (mini) drone.
The lack of a real-time video feed means you'll need to fly with your drone in sight at all times, so the SKEYE is best suited for pilots looks to have fun performing aerobatic and shooting HD footage of the immediate surrounding areas. However, if that's you, the SKEYE is your best option, as it boasts “high thrust, low weight, and incredibly responsive controls that allow you to perform amazing maneuvers with just a flick of the sticks.”
Why stop at mini when you can go full-nano?
The Virhuck is compact to the point where it can be stored within its own controller, which itself will easily fit in any pocket. And at 19.99, bouncing this off a sidewalk (or a neighbor's upstairs window) isn't quite as big a concern as it would be with larger drones.
I've yet to meet a person who isn't fascinated by the world of drones and/or the impact they are already having on a variety of industries. So take a test flight with one of these mini drones, and find out if you really are meant to be an ace (drone) pilot.
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