How much does a Drone cost? The cheapest and the most expensive drones
Drone cost in 2018 – How much is a drone?
Ready to buy your very first drone? Well, there’s a good chance that you are, if not you won’t be trying to figure out how much does drones costs. What’s more, you may have already started your research on several different types of drones, trying to figure out the perfect one that fits your budget.
You have two options when buying drones – it’s either you stick to simple ones that come with affordable price tags or shell out a little more cash for advanced ones. Moreover, there are additional costs that come along with owning a drone. For instance, your choice drone may not contain all the parts you want, or you may need to replace some parts in the long run.
So what’s the point?
Well, it’s pretty simple, the cost of a drone goes beyond the purchase price! In this post, you’re going to learn just about everything you need to know about the overall cost of a drone. And we’re certain that the information will make it a whole lot easier for you to take the plunge.
Let’s dive in!
First Things First — How much can a drone cost?
As with other products on the market, drones come with different price tags — it’s either you’re getting a cheap, affordable drone or an expensive one. As you probably guessed, the expensive UAVs will come with a few parts and features you’re unlikely to find in cheap drones. For the most part, cheap and sturdy drones are sure to work great for beginners since there’s a good chance of crashing down while the pilot is still training. You wouldn’t want to try your flying skills with a expensive drone that cost you over $1,000 right? We don’t think so.
It’s also good to point out that there are quite a number of manufacturers that stand out from the crowd and as you probably guessed, they make some of the best drones money can buy. With that in mind, the cost of your flying robot has a lot to do with its maker. The bottom line; you should be prepared to shell out a lot of cash if you’re looking to purchase drones from leading brands like DJI, Yuneec, Freefly Systems just to name a few.
At this point, we’re going to take a step back to the purchase price of your drone — there’s actually more to it than meets the eye. It’s important to note that the total cost of a drone comprises of the initial price and the maintenance cost (usually the cost of replacement parts).
For the most part, there are drones that come with higher price tags and are at the same time, packed with several different accessories that add to the experience. Such drones typically come with an excellent camera, functional gimbal, drone case and other important accessories.
All in all, the overall cost of your drone depends on the accessories you choose to add to it. That said, here are a few accessories you may want or have to purchase after getting your very own flying robot.
- Propeller Guards
Now, when you get your drone, there’s a good chance that you’re going to be flying it outdoors, and you’ll want to do all you can to make the experience safe, not just for you but other people around. That said, it’s in your best interest to get propeller guards — these can protect you and other bystanders from being injured, and that’s huge. Essentially, propeller guards are priced between $4 to $20, so you’ll want to add this to the purchase price if you’re interested in making your drone safe.
- Extra Batteries
At this point, it’s up to you to choose a cheap drone that lasts 6 to 8 minutes on a single charge or a medium priced/expensive one with a flight time of 25 minutes or more. It’s however important to note that these batteries typically take some time to get fully charged and of course, you wouldn’t want to wait for long hours between flights. With that in mind, you may want to spend between $3 to $20 on extra batteries (prices vary from drone to drone).
- Drone Carrying Case
Looking to explore the great outdoors with your flying robot? If yes, you’ll want to spend a little more for a drone case or a drone backpack. It’s only normal to shell out an extra $30 to $100 to protect your high-end $1,000 plus investment, right?
- Camera Gimbal
First off, there are drone models that come with high-quality gimbals that can keep your camera in place thus making it easy to capture clear and crisp pictures in mid-air. On the flip side, some drones require you to purchase extra gimbals to keep your camera steady — the good thing is, you can get one for as low as $10.
- Micro SD Cards
Got a drone with a super efficient camera? If yes, you can be sure of getting great aerial shots! However, you’ll want to set aside a little more cash for a good capacity micro SD card — what’s the point of taking pictures if you don’t have where to store them? For the most part, the price could be as low as $5 or as high as $25. Just stick to the one that works for you!
- LED Kit
As you probably guessed, this accessory is not really important, but you can still get one if you’re looking to add a fun quotient to your drone. The kit is sure to come in handy when flying your drone at night — you’ll get to keep track of your device and stun bystanders while you’re at it. The good thing is, these kits come with reasonable price tags, so you can even get one while purchasing your drone.
So that you can see why drone’s costs can vary that much, we reviewed a cheap, an affordable and an expensive Drone:
Cheap Drone: Holy Stone F181C RC Quadcopter Drone
For starters, the Holy Stone F181C Quadcopter Drone is a great option for beginners — it’s actually one of the best you can get for under $100. As you probably guessed, this entry-level drone won’t come with the features you’re likely to find in other expensive UAVs, but it’s still great to try your skills before going for the big guys. First off, the Holy Stone F181C RC Quadcopter Drone comes with 7 to 9 minutes flight time and charges in about 80 minutes. That said, the drone’s battery life may not be too strong, but it’s pretty good for the price.
It’s also good to point out that the F181 comes with the headless mode, making it a great pick for beginners looking to try their hands on something a bit more advanced. The quadcopter also boasts a one key return function, altitude hold function, and 360-degree eversion. Its 720P HD camera makes it possible to capture impressive aerial videos and pictures — there’s also an included 4GB memory card to store your beautiful creations. What’s more, the drone comes with up to four-speed modes and even has a spare battery for extra flight time. It’s excellent nighttime visibility and durability are also worth mentioning. All in all, the Holy Stone F181C RC Quadcopter Drone is a good option for the newbie looking to learn how to fly before dropping $1000 or more for advanced models.
Affordable Drone: DJI Phantom 3 Standard Quadcopter Drone with 2.7K HD Video Camera
Coming with the ability to capture 2.7K HD videos and 12 MP photos, the DJI Phantom 3 Standard Quadcopter Drone is one of the best medium-priced drones that’s sure to take your flying experience to the next level. For the most part, the DJI Phantom 3 is the perfect pick for pilots looking to take amazing picture and videos, and have a swell time while they’re at it. This drone also comes with an extremely stable gimbal, making it your best bet if you’re looking to take super perfect shots. What’s more, the DJI Phantom 3 comes with a whopping 25 minutes of flight time, and that’s great!
It’s also good to point out that this flying robot comes with a number of cool features including the Automatic Flight Assistant, Way Point and Follow Me. As you probably guessed, the first feature brings your drone back to you with just one click while the Way Point allows you to set your own paths so the drone can take the routes all by itself. What’s more, Follow Me is great for those who want their drones to be right behind them as they explore the great outdoors. Its IOC (intelligent orientation control) feature is also a big plus! All in all, the DJI Phantom 3 Standard is one of the most affordable, feature-rich drones that’s totally worth the money — don’t hesitate to get it if you can!
Most Expensive Drone: Yuneec Typhoon H Pro with Intel RealSense Technology
Looking to take your flying to the next level? Or just ready to start taking high-quality airborne video? If yes is your answer to these questions, we’ll recommend you get your hands on the Yuneec Typhoon H Pro with Intel RealSense Technology! This is the latest model from Yuneec that’s specifically designed for high-end drone users. The Typhoon H is a large, yet lightweight drone that uses up to engines to fly — it’s more like an upgrade to the regular quadcopter. For the most part, this drone shoots very high-quality 4K video and shoots super clear 12 MP photos. It even gets better — the camera comes with a full 360° anti-vibration gimbal. That said you can be sure of taking the super perfect pictures and videos at your own pace, even in high winds won’t be able to hold you back!
You’ll also be glad to know that the Yuneec Typhoon H Pro comes with its exclusive RealSense Technology which detects and avoid obstacles. What’s more, you can program the drone to navigate through its set route or even move toward you with the Follow Me mode. The package also comes with the ST16 all-in-one controller — it boasts a large 7-inch screen that shows you the real-time footage from your drone’s camera, cool right? The Yuneec Typhoon H Pro also comes with the automatic return to home feature coupled with the auto-takeoff and autoland. Its upgraded one year warranty is also a big plus!
So Why The Price Difference?
At this point, it’s pretty obvious that the price difference has a lot to do with the features and overall sophistication. For starters, the Holy Stone F181C RC Quadcopter Drone is obviously meant for the newbies — it doesn’t have GPS, the camera is just 720p, and the range is not so good. On the flip side, the DJI Phantom 3 Standard Quadcopter Drone and Yuneec Typhoon H Pro come with a boatload of features that makes them stand out from the crowd. First off, the DJI Phantom 3 goes beyond to deliver 2.7K HD videos — this is obviously higher than the F181C RC 720 P. But the Yuneec Typhoon H Pro beats them both to provide users with 4K Ultra HD video! Moreover, the flight time of the cheaper drone differs from that of the affordable and expensive one. In essence, the Holy Stone F181C comes with 7 to 9 minutes flight time while the DJI Phantom 3 and Yuneec Typhoon H Pro can be flown for up to 25 minutes.
There are still a lot of features that make higher-priced drones better than cheap ones, but it’s always advisable to start from the likes of Holy Stone F181C RC before going for something like the DJI Phantom 3 or Yuneec Typhoon H Pro. Why? Well, drones do crash, but it gets better when you’ve mastered your craft, so be sure to start with a cheap UAV and upgrade to a more sophisticated one as time goes by. Happy flying.