So, it’s that time of year again. You’re rushing round trying to find presents for everyone you’ve ever met and you’re almost out of time. Luckily for you, the RC Geeks team have revised our handy list of the best drones of 2018 – starting at as little as £34.99!
Don’t worry if you can’t tell your DJI‘s from your Makerfire‘s, this blog should have everything you need to make an informed decision. If not, you can send me, or preferably one of my colleagues, an angry email and we’ll do our best to help you out. Fancy something that drives instead? Click here to check out our Best Cars 2018 Blog.
We have nicknamed this fantastic little drone the “Micro Whoop”, because Tiny Whoop just doesn’t do it justice!
Sizing up at under 6cm², this drone is absolutely packed with features. The controller has a one touch take-off/landing feature, plus 3 different speed modes, a headless mode and even a return to home function!
Impressively, this drone can also be connected to your smartphone – opening up a whole host of new features. Your phone can be used as an FPV (First Person View) display, providing a live view from the on-board camera, and even allowing you to take videos and photos mid flight! Furthermore, you can forget the controller completely and use your smartphone to fly, with all the features of the controller, the phone also allows you to dynamically draw a path on your screen and the drone will copy that path right in-front of you. Pretty impressive, right?
Check out the XFLY Micro Whoop now!
Whilst a touch more expensive, the Sky Viper Stunt Drone offers a different flight experience. Its larger controller is ideal for larger adult hands, whilst its larger body and props make it a more forgiving craft to fly. It includes the battery and charge lead, which can be charged from any low-ampage USB port such as on your laptop.
This simple craft is perfect for anyone considering getting into the basics of flight control without making a big financial investment. It has auto launch, auto land and altitude adjustment buttons for complete beginners, but also performs barrel rolls and flips with a combination of the stick controls. You will need 3xAAA batteries to power the transmitter before you can get in the air.
You can grab the Sky Viper S1750 Stunt Drone from our webstore here.
Looking for something for little kids and big kids alike? Try the Carrera Nintendo Mario Kart™ Quadcopter! This quadcopter measures roughly 1ft square and features foam propeller guards making it safer for flight indoors.
The included battery is good for short 7 minute flights, just enough time to take your Mario Kart battles to the sky! Beginner and advanced flight modes make it easier for novices to get flying. We also offer extra batteries for this drone should you wish to get right back at it.
Take a closer look at the Carrera Mario Kart quadcopter here.
This Tiny-Whoop style bundle comes with the drone, plus a pair of entry-level wireless VR goggles so that you can fly your new drone in true FPV style! The drone itself is a powerful ducted-fan design, ideal for stunt flying indoors.
The Makerfire VR006 goggles that are included in this bundle allow you to wirelessly tune in to the real-time transmission coming from the camera on-board the Tiny Whoop, meaning that you can fly the drone out of your eyeline whilst you’ve got your feet up on the sofa! If you can afford the extra for this combo, the upgrade to VR goggles really does improve the flight experience, and excitement, immensely.
Pick up the Makerfire Armor Shark VR Bundle on our website now!
Ryze Tello Mini Drone (£99)
This drone is a little different to all the others we have talked about so far. This beastie contains DJI technologies that bless it with autopilot talents. By that, we mean it can literally fly rings around you! Controlled via Wifi from an app on your smartphone (Available for both Android and iOS, its best check it works before you buy one) the Tello its a highly intelligent quadcopter.
A 5MP camera capable of 720P video paired with the app means a live video downlink on your phone screen, ideal for positioning the craft for a cheeky dronie. Its removable battery allows for 13 minutes of flight time, with auto takeoff and landing and low battery warnings. Its incredible vision-positioning-system allows for incredibly stable flight both indoors and out, plus the ability to land safely in your hand.
Based on the popular Mavic Pro (a previous favourite of ours) the Mavic Air is half the size and 41% lighter! It features a 4K video camera with 3-axis Gimbal, 21 minute flight time, 2.5 mile range and 32-megapixel panoramas. If you are looking for a drone to actually take videos or photos with, this is probably the best balance of price-to-capability we have. Its intelligent flight modes and sensors make flying simple and safe!
DJI have worked to make the drone and its accessories as portable as possible. The folding arms mean it can be slipped into a pocket or clutch bag, ensuring its always on hand when you want that dronie! Much like its older brother, the Mavic Air can be bought as a bundle. The ‘Fly more Combo’ includes extra batteries, propellers, prop guards, car charger, battery hub, shoulder bag and more!
The Mavic 2 is the top of DJI’s ‘prosumer’ range of drones. Available in Pro or Zoom form, offer 31 minutes of flight time, omni-directional obstacle sensing, long range control and new filming modes such as hyperlapse. The Pro model features a large 1-inch camera sensor with Hasselblad technology, whilst the Zoom model has a much lauded 2x optical zoom!
A personal favourite of mine, the Mavic 2 Pro is, in my opinion, way ahead of the competition. This certainly isn’t a toy, or a gimmick drone – it is highly professional and can provide endless fun, as well as exceptionally high quality photos and videos.
Absolutely everything is considered when it comes to the Mavic 2 series. From the packaging, to the ergonomics of the controller, to the smooth gimbal movements, the Mavic is a tremendously high quality drone that is guaranteed to thrill. It is the most expensive drone on our list, but if you can afford to fork out over a grand, it’s certain to excite. Besides, whoever you’re buying it for may even let you use it, if you ask nicely.
These high end VR Goggles link directly with DJI drones, allowing you to see footage from your drone in real time during flight. Furthermore, you can even set the camera unit to track your head movements, so as you turn your head, the camera on the drone dynamically mirrors your actions – pretty cool, right? Furthermore, the DJI Goggles RE can also tune into 5.8Ghz video transmissions from FPV racers!
As per the originals, they can be plugged in to a whole host of other devices, through the included HDMI cable, allowing you to watch your favourite shows or play your favourite games in classic VR style.
DJI boast the goggles to be equivalent to watching a 216 inch home cinema screen from less than 10 feet away. Now if that doesn’t excite you, I honestly don’t know what will.
You can discover more about the original DJI Googles in our initial hands-on review. Find out how they can be used for everything from surveying to filming in our recent blog paired with the Mavic 2 Zoom. Learn just what goes on inside to get that incredible HD picture in our teardown blog. Pick up a pair of DJI Googles (Racing Edition) here on our webstore.
Help and Support
Here at RC Geeks, we don’t just sell cars. We thoroughly support all of our models with a range of spares, hop-ups, batteries and accessories. Check out our extensive Spares Finder here! We also provide excellent quality support for you and your product – if you have any pre or post sales inquiries, please don’t hesitate to get in contact with our friendly support team!