So, you might wonder what makes a drone worth a couple hundred bucks? Is it the camera? Or perhaps the flight characteristics?
What would make you spend your hard earned cash on a more expensive drone, if you can get one for less. Stick around and I’ll tell you why these are the best drones under $200, and why they are worth every penny.
The Altair 818 Hornet is truly a great drone for all skill levels. The Hornet is nice and stable making it very easy to fly. It’s also a durable drone that can take a crash, which is hard to do with the safety features like the out of range alarm and emergency landing function. What I like best about it though is the custom route mapping with FPV. Very cool features and why I picked it as the best drone under $200.
Why Should You Buy a Drone Under $200?
There are a wide variety of drones ranging from micro and nano drones that are cheap to large professional drones that cost a thousand or more.
Here are a few characteristics to look for in a drone around this price range.
Camera Quality and Accessories
Cheaper quads might not come with a camera or they might come with a low-quality camera. These drones are perfect as they feature at least a 720P HD camera with Wi-Fi streaming capabilities.
Most of these drones allow you to get a first-person view of the scene. Further, they allow you to upload these videos and photos on a disk or drive. Some of these drones have an SD card included. Also, most of these offer a First person View (FPV) allowing for a more immersive view straight from the cockpit!
Not sure with FPV is, check out this awesome video.
Inexpensive drones are not suited for all types of pilots. Most beginners cannot fly them very well and even experts seem to face problems.
However, these ‘under $200’ drones are equipped with the most innovative features that make flight easier, safer and more fun! They can be used by all kinds of pilots.
Another unique factor to these drones is that they are durable and sturdy. There would be no point in buying an expensive drone that broke down in the smallest of crashes. These below are made from durable plastics with a much sturdier frame.
Last but not the least is the price. Of course, you can buy an expensive drone with more features. However, you might not need all of these features.
These fantastically equipped drones have the best accumulation of features at a very reasonable price. Nothing more or less might suit you best!
What to Consider When Buying The Best Drones Under $200?
Follow our complete buyer’s guide to getting only the best drones under $200.
Durability & Versatility
First and foremost, you need to ensure the build of your drone is durable and that it can withstand the toughest of crashes. Look for drones that are a bit heavier so that they can withstand tough winds and easily be flown outdoors.
Next, ensure the drone you buy has a longer flight time of 15-20 minutes and a charging time of not more than 100-120 minutes. In addition, we recommend looking for a drone with an extra battery. This ensures you can enjoy flying your drone longer than usual.
Ease of Flight
While you might find some of these features on cheaper drones, nevertheless they are not as accurate as they are in the more expensive quads. Further, the ‘under $200′ quads have more of these features together. Ensure you find one with at least 3-4 of these features:
- One Key Land/Take-off: allows you to take off or land in the press of a button.
- One Key Return home allows the drone to return to its original position with one key.
- One Key Flip: allows you to perform spectacular stunts with the press of a button.
- Altitude Hold: allows the drone to hover at a set altitude for a more stable flight.
- Headless Mode: ensures you can fly the drone in any direction without repositioning.
- Custom Route Mode: allows you to design your own custom route on a smartphone.
- Emergency Stop: allows the drone to stop immediately if it gets out of control.
A camera might be the only reason you are buying one of these more expensive drones. Ensure you get nothing less than a 720P HD one.
Furthermore, at the price point, you should get one with a First Person View (FPV) as it allows for a better experience especially if you use it with a VR headset.
Today’s Best Drones Under $200
Below you’ll find the top rated drones in this particular price range. They are packed with excellent features and will no doubt be the best drones you can buy for under $200.
Holy Stone HS110D FPV RC Drone
In the world of drones, perhaps none can match the class and quality of the Holy Stone Drones. The HS110D RC Drone is perfect for those who want a high-quality camera to capture their perfect moments.
It is equipped with a 720P HD camera with a FOV of about 120 degrees. This allows a bird’s eye view of the whole scenario. The quad is VR compatible as well so you can enjoy the experience all over again.
Further, it features an Altitude Hold Function, an Emergency Stop function, one key landing/start and a Headless Mode. All of these functions make the drone easier to control and contribute to an overall stable flight.
A powerful drone needs a powerful battery and that’s why the Holy Stone HS110D is powered by a 3.7V 1000 mAh Li-Po Battery. The playing time is about 10 minutes while the charging time is 120 minutes. The 2.4GHz transmitter has a range of about 100m.
With Adjustable Speed Modes, LED Lighting and Gravity Sensor, the Holy Stone has features upon features that won’t leave you regretting!
- 720P HD Wi-Fi Camera with a wide angled lens.
- Easier and more stable flight.
- Features Altitude Hold Button, Emergency Stop, One Key Landing/Start and Headless Mode.
- VR compatible.
- Features Adjustable Speed Modes and a Gravity Sensor Mode.
- Very low playing time.
- Short Transmission for the price point.
Altair 818 Hornet Beginner FPV Camera Drone RC Quadcopter
The Altair 818 Hornet Beginner Drone is perfect for all levels of pilots whether they are seasoned professionals or amateurs. Its versatility and variety of features have helped this drone fly to the very top of our list!
The Altair is equipped with a 720P HD camera with a 120 degree wide angled lens. Furthermore, it is VR compatible and can be used to make first-person real-time videos, which definitely justifies the price point.
What makes this drone unique is that it is equipped with a Custom Routes mode that allows you to use your smartphone and preset a route for your drone to follow. What else? It allows you to select the skill level you want to fly the drone on including Expert, intermediate and Beginner.
The Altair is powered by 7.4V LiPo dual batteries with a play time of about 15 minutes. The transmitter has a range of about 150 meters. Also included are a Low Battery Alarm and an Out Of Range Alarm that prevents you from loosing and crashing your drone.
- 720P camera with a wide angled lens and Wi-Fi.
- Long transmission range.
- Dual Batteries.
- Longer playing time.
- Features Out Of Range Alarm and Out of Battery Alarm.
- Features Altitude Hold, Headless Mode, and One Key Start.
- Allows you to customize the routes.
- Skill level selector
- The unit is too light and cannot handle a gentle breeze.
DBPOWER WIFI FPV Version U818A Drone
The DBPower Drone is perfect for beginners and kids who are looking to start flying a more modern and sci-fi version of a drone. Equipped with a high definition camera, it will certainly bring out the photographer in every kid.
The camera in question is a 720P HD camera with a real-time transmission to your phone via Wi-Fi. For those beginners who fear of ruining their drone by crashing it, this drone is made from durable ABS plastic which makes the frame an impact resistant zone.
Also included is a headless mode for all those times you cannot get the orientation of your drone right. The included Gyro technology ensures the drone is much more sensitive to your commands making it easier to control. It can even perform 360-degree flip with the press of a button.
The 3.7 V 700mAh Li-Po battery grants it a playtime of 10 minutes while the charge time is about 120 minutes. The low battery alarm ensures you never crash your drone because of an empty battery.
All in all, when you look at the big picture, you will find the price to be much more reasonable due to the innovative features packed inside this small machine.
- 720P HD camera with Wi-Fi.
- Headless Mode.
- Gyro Technology.
- One button 360 degrees flip.
- Dual battery.
- No VR Compatibility.
- No altitude hold or one key functions.
- It is too light and cannot handle wind.
- Does not have a wide angled lens.
Force1 Drone with Camera Live Video
The Force1 Drone is equipped with the ultimate flying technology to make every pilot’s wildest dreams come true. With simple operation, anyone from a clueless beginner to a seasoned expert can fly this beauty to infinity and beyond!
The drone is equipped with a 720P HD camera with a live video feed that allows you to see the world from up above. The drone is VR compatible as well so you can enjoy soaring high! It can also perform 360-degree flips, which is the icing on the top!
The One key landing and take off function makes it easier for kids to land the drone without the fear of crashing it. Further, the Altitude Hold and the Headless Mode ensure you can easily hover or take off in any direction without re-orienting yourselves.
The 3.7V 500mAh dual battery powered drone has a flight time of about 10 minutes. However, the included extra battery and the power bank boost up the play time to about 25 minutes.
How do you justify the price? With the Custom Flight Mode of course! It allows you to design your own route on your smartphone and then let your drone take wings! You won’t find this feature in any cheaper drones.
- Live 720P video streaming with WiFi.
- VR compatible.
- Features one key land/take off and headless mode.
- Provides stable flight with Altitude Hold function and Gyro.
- Longer play time.
- Dual battery.
- Allows you to design custom routes.
- Can perform 360-degree flips.
- Cannot handle much wind.
- Does not have a wide angled lens.
Holy Stone F181W Wifi FPV Drone
Another high-quality drone from Holy Stone, the F181W is a high-resolution camera drone designed specifically for those with a love of photography in their hearts.
The 720P HD Camera is unlike others as it has 120 degrees wide angled lens with an FPV. The WiFi allows you to enjoy the pictures and videos on your smartphone by simply installing an app.
The 6 axis Gyro Control System offers a safe and fun way for beginners and kids to get started as it keeps the quad stable. The Altitude Hold and the Headless Modes are a godsend for beginners as well because they make the whole flying process much easier.
The 3.7V 750 mAh dual battery includes a charging time of 70-90 minutes while the play time is merely 7-10 minutes. It can even perform 3D flips and land/start at the press of a button.
What makes this drone truly exquisite is its Return Home function that allows it to return to its original position. Furthermore, you can control the speed of the drone according to your preference.
- 120 degrees FOV Wide angled 720P Wi-Fi Camera.
- Features a stable flight with Gyro and Altitude Hold.
- Dual Batteries.
- FeaturesOne Key Start/Land and One Key 3D flip buttons
- Return Home button ensures you never lose your drone.
- Controllable Speeds.
- Not VR compatible.
- Instructions in the manual are a little vague.
Potensic F181DH RC Drone Quadcopter
Potensic F181DC is an astounding automation from Potensic, which is a done equipped with a high definition camera designed to capture the most breathtaking scenes from an aerial view.
The HD 2 megapixels camera and 5.8 GHz wireless HD monitor screen on the remote controller allows you to witness the most beautiful sceneries without any delay, granting you the real-time video without connecting to any smartphone.
The Altitude Hold and stepless-speed function help the drone to beat the air pressure and makes the flying much easier outdoors. With then newest 6 axis Gyro Control System, it assures the most stable and safest fly operation among all the drone technologies.
The 3.7V 850 mAh dual battery guarantees more flight time and enabling you a longer battery life. With a time of 70-90 minutes to full charge, you can take a 7-10 minutes flight.
- HD 2 megapixels camera with 5.8 GHz monitor screen.
- Gyro and Altitude Hold functions for a stable and safe flight.
- Equipped with 4 Batteries.
- Adjustment of speed.
- Professional grade carrying case.
- Not VR compatible.
- Not water resistant.
- No Home return feature.
So, now that you know our top picks for the best drones under $200. You might wonder, “Which of these is the King of Kings?” Well, it should come as no surprise that the Altair 818 Hornet is our top choice!
Its range, versatility, and durability are all features that we absolutely love! Apart from that, the camera is in top shape and it includes a custom route mode as well! How could we not choose it?