We think you’ll agree that finding an effective drone for a cheap price is extremely hard, but it doesn’t have to be.
There are several drones out there on the market differing drastically in price. Drones can be sold anywhere from under $100, like the Force 1 UDI Camera Drone for kids, to the DJI Phantom 4 Pro Quadcopter equipped with the ready to fly pro accessory bundle which is upwards of $2,000. You may want to start with the Syma X5C 2 which is a major bargain at less than $50 and great for beginners and anyone simply having fun just playing around.
Are looking for the best drone to take aerial pictures and videos? One that is just the right fit for you, while still being inexpensive? You might want to try the Drocon U31W with a full 720p HD camera and one-touch auto return. Remember it’s still important to comply with FAA rules and safety guidelines.
Below we have compiled a list of the best drones for you and your wallet.
Shop for the top budget drones on the market without breaking the bank
1. Syma X5C 2 – Best Overall
The Syma X5C 2 is a great drone and it’s at an even better price of under $50. With quadcopter fans, this rotorcraft drone is our best overall runner-up. You’ll get value and quality with the Syma X5C 2. This item is accompanied by a USB charger that allows for less than 100 minutes of charging time and a 2.4 GHz remote control with an LCD displayer which is simple to use, even for first-timers.
The X5C gives you seven minutes of flight time with cheap, available parts in case of damage. A six-axis gyroscope stabilization system ensures that it has maximum flight stability. You can perform one-touch flips with the X5C with 360-degree inversion. The X5C also allows for inside and outside flying at a 150-foot range.
With the X5C you’ll get a fantastic deal and rest assured still be at the top of the quadcopter world on the strength of its 3.7-volt battery. The remote control is top-notch for first timers with a spread spectrum technology and even anti-interference ability. Avoid the blues from first time crashes with back up accessories that are included like spare propellers and blade guards.
This drone has a stellar 720p HD camera built in for a premium viewing experience, which makes for eagle-eyed views, overall value, and a great bargain. Don’t forget with its wind-resistant design you have a smooth drive with prime videos, too. The Syma X5C 2 is recommended as one of the best cheap drones you’ll find.
According to some users, it’s missing a takeoff and landing video feature and it doesn’t get great video shots at times. However, it’s fast, fun, and extremely durable.
Another user said it delivers somewhere between 6-10 minutes of flight time depending on the conditions. They also said that the batteries for the X5C are cheap and pretty simple to replace.
This drone ranks high in speed, durability and battery life, while its image capturing feature is often times mediocre.
2. DBPOWER MJX X400W FPV Drone – Best Value
The DBPOWER MJX X400 FPV model is a budget favorite sporting a well-known name. You’ll get all the amazing features in this drone for under $100. Do you want real-time transmission? Then look no further than the X400W FPV Drone. Take photos anytime anywhere with the HD Wi-Fi camera while being able to share them as you go.
The DBPOWER MJX X400W is definitely one of your best budget options. This affordable drone shoots 720p HD video that can be recorded and stored both on a TF card and your mobile app. With a low battery and an out of range alarm, you’ll feel safe and secure about your drone at all times. Never be disoriented in the sky with headless mode with the one-key return feature, which automatically returns the drone when enabled.
You’ll also have access to the 3-D flip and roll feature with the DBPOWER MJX X400W model so you can see from every direction. Have fun seeing the world from every aspect and angle while you soar through the air. This drone is supported by Android and IOS devices, while the LED light gives you a great view in the dark. This affordable drone has two switchable speed modes and comes with a neatly designed VR headset. Don’t forget you can place your phone on the remote control for enhanced viewing right in front of your face.
Users have said that they have found that this drone flies great if you take the time to understand it first. One user bought this for his son and they both love it. They also stated that the headless mode works great, especially for newbies. Other users have said they’ve had trouble controlling it at higher altitudes and some have had problems connecting the camera with the Google Play Android App, and others feel that the price/risk ratio is pretty much spot on.
Overall this drone appears to be a great buy for its under $100-dollar price tag while being both beginner and expert friendly if the right amount of time is taken before flying it.
3. Haktoys HAK905 - Best Indoors
We think that the best indoor drone you can get your hands on is the Haktoys HAK905 with special LED frames. The bright LED lights on these drones are ideal for night flights and will light up the sky. They are great for kids and will be a hit at any sleepover birthday party your son or daughter attends.
The HAK905 has two-speed controls which can even do 360-degree aerial flips, during both outdoor and indoor flights. The Li-Po battery lasts close to 10 minutes. With a wide range, 2.4GHz allows you to be able to fly with other quadrocopters simultaneously with accuracy and agility.
While the HAK905 is a drone that can fly for seven to nine minutes, it only takes 30 to 45 minutes to recharge its battery. This drone has a flight range of 350 feet which is much higher than most other drones on the market. It will give you a smooth flight until the LED lights indicate a low battery. You will also love the six-axis stabilization technology of the gyroscope on the HAK905.
The kids will have a ton of fun with this drone, even if it slams off the walls on occasion. Rest assured it will hold up with top-of-the-line durability. It has a sleek design, which allows it to seamlessly glide through the air.
Some customers have said that they love the control sensitivity and that you can flip the drone. The kids love it. One user also said that he was very skeptical about this purchase, however, from the moment their 11-year-old son unwrapped his gift he loved it.
Other users have said I’ve had problems with the battery compartment and that this drone started pulling to one side immediately after they started flying it.
The HAK 905 is comparable to the Drocon U31W. They are both kid-friendly and have about the same amount of flying time. The Drocon has a headless mode and altitude hold mode, while the HAK 905 does 360-degree flip and rolls and flies up to 350 feet.
4. Drocon U31W – Best for Outdoors
The Drocon U31W is a quadcopter and the best outdoor drone. This drone is a great low budget option for you, while the HD video and pictures will exceed your expectations. The camera has a wide angle and VR video on demand that is capable of capturing solid selfies. You’ll love the altitude hold mode which maintains its altitude, especially great if you purchase this for kids.
There are many amazing features like hovering, while the legit barometer adjusts in altitude hold mode and stays at the height you set it to. With one-key takeoff, headless mode, and its speed, the Drocon U31W won’t disappoint.
With an intuitive standalone controller device, you will feel at ease when piloting this drone. The 720pHD camera will bring the drone flight to life in both still shots and videos. Try to remember to switch to VR video mode to record the journey to your phone. This drone was made for children and beginners with a low battery notification and safe flight mode, assuring you that you’ll never lose the drone.
Not to worry if the Drocon U31W has problems, you’ll have the luxury of a 1-year warranty that protects against any factory defects. You’ll also get a 4GB TF card accompanying the camera with this drone and the 120-degree FOV lens. Don’t forget the smartphone control mode feature where you can fly the drone with your phone. The charging time for this amazing outdoor drone is 75 minutes and the flight time is about 6 minutes.
Users have said that this drone is very easy to fly and it provides a stable flight. Other users have stated that the auto takeoff function is very easy to use, and the altitude hold function works great.
One user said the 720 p camera gives you a nice chance to get great pictures during the flight. Another user said that if you cannot buy a second battery, don’t buy this drone.
All in all this drone seems to be a great bargain and should make you happy with your choice.
5. Hubsan H107C+ - Best Mini
With this tiny drone, good things come in small packages. This miniature drone is delightful to fly. You’ll have great camera quality with the inexpensive Hubsan H170C+, using the 720p HD camera to snap fun photos while you fly. This drone is the best mini at a less-than-$50-dollar price range and will make you satisfied with your purchase.
The Hubsan H170C+ with a 2.4GHz quadcopter transmitter is delightful to use and stacks up well against a pricier model. The battery allows for 7 minutes of flying time and when you are ready to recharge, it should only take 40 minutes. You can definitely take this drone up to 150 feet and if you crash into the water it will stay afloat so you can retrieve it.
You’ll be able to perform flips while also getting a smooth and stable flight. Don’t forget to use the 720p camera to capture the video reel during your flight. This feature is a lot of fun and is even better with the altitude hold mode so you can zero in on your intended point of focus more easily with its increased stability.
The Hubsan H170C+ comes equipped with an additional operator movement feature and a six-axis gyro enabling you to adjust the gyro’s sensitivity. The Hubsan H170C+ also has anti-interference technology. As far as palm-sized models go, this is your best option for a low-cost mini-drone. Other miniature drones don’t quite produce quality camera shots like the Hubsan H170C+ does.
Customers who have used this drone have said they are pretty impressed with this little unit after flying it for a month now and that they were very happy with it. Another user said that they wish it had a kill switch. While some other people have said they wish the props had guards for them, yet it takes very good photos and videos.
Overall the price and the features of this drone make for a good buy if you are in the market for a mini-drone.
6. Holy Stone F181 - Best for Intermediates
The Holy Stone F181 is a solid choice for beginner and intermediate drone fliers. This drone is one of the best introductory drones you can buy. It has a one-key return and headless security system.
With the Holy Stone F181, you’ll be able to shoot great pictures using the two-megapixel camera and you’ll protect against any significant damage with the propeller protectors. If you’re not comfortable with the controls, rest assured the headless security system and one-key return will take care of you.
The Holy Stone F181 is very affordable and easy to fly. You will get a flight time of up to 9 minutes and with the bonus battery recharge option, you’re able to attain a longer flight time. Expect a range of 50-100 meters with Holy Stone F181. Don’t forget the altitude hold function which prevents altitude bumps, a great feature when streaming to your smartphone. It will also protect you from unanticipated or sudden movements during the course of the flight.
This is a fantastic drone choice for intermediate users. The quality of the live streaming feed camera at this price point is something you should take advantage of. The game console controller takes AA batteries and for most people, makes for a smooth transition from traditional controllers. It has a one-key start and landing along with the 3D flips and rolls feature, definitely great perks of this drone. Let’s not forget the LED lights that are great for night flying, Remember that it also comes with a second battery.
Some users of the Holy Stone F181 have said it’s a great drone for indoor flying. However, you should definitely use the propeller guards and you should read the manual first. They have also said one of the motors burned out on the second day of use. A user also said they felt the price for this drone should be less, however, when they contacted customer support about a problem, they said the company sent out a replacement the next day. Others have stated the batteries are a pain in the neck to swap out, while the flip feature is awesome. It should be noted that it’s best to take a 10-minute cooldown period between flights.
Everything considered we think the Holy Stone F181 is the best choice for an intermediate level user.
7. UDI U818A-HD - Best for Beginners
The UDI U818A-HD is the best place to start for beginner drone users. It’s an affordable drone that will lessen the learning curve for you to get you to the more advanced stages of drone flying. The headless IOC function is a user-friendly feature allowing you to have a bigger margin of error when you are starting out.
This drone is tailor-made for inexperienced pilots looking to develop their flying skills. The UDI 818A is easy to grasp and a whole lot of fun for all ages of users. You can experience the joy of flying while learning the features on the go with this drone. It has a 1MP video camera with 1080x720p resolution. The live video will make you feel like you are a bird soaring through the air when using this drone.
The UDI U818A comes equipped with a 500mAh battery and gives you 8 minutes of flying time. You’ll be fully charged after two hours of recharge time. It also has anti-fall and collision performance to keep you from dropping out of the sky. Don’t forget the spare batteries are less than $10.
If you’re interested in an LCD display, the UDI U818A has it, along with good signal strength. It comes with a six-axis flight system which gives you a powerful thrust. Remember to connect it to your smartphone or Wi-Fi device for extra fun.
Those who have used the UDI U818A have stated this quad is amazing. The kids have had cheaper $20 drones before and they never lasted long or were very difficult to fly. Another user said that this quadcopter is very affordable and durable. While a different user said it was fun to fly once, but they constantly had to adjust a yaw on the drone. Lastly, after a crash, one user said the drone simply bounced back and kept going.
This easy functioning, durable drone is a great place to start and learn.
One thing is for certain, you won’t go wrong with any of these drones. Whether you are looking for the best flight time, recharge time, HD video and pictures, you’ve got a list right here that will guide you toward the best purchase and the best fit for you at the most competitive price.
You can choose from the best quadcopter to the best in outstanding video and images. Or a drone that is just plain cool and goes great with your smartphone. Rest assured you’ll be having a lot of fun while still knowing you have one of the best cheap drones on the market. All for under $100.