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Old 06-12-2020, 12:31 PM   #1
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Drone recommendations

I'm interested in buying a drone and would like opinions from folks that are using them. I need to stay under $200. I've been doing some research and below is my short list of features:

1. Brushless motors

2. GPS with auto return in case of low battery or signal loss

3. 5G wifi with 1080P live streaming to my I-phone

4. 2-axis self-stabilizing gimbal for the camera

5. Appx 20 minutes of flying time between charges

6. Follow me mode

7. Minimum of 1000' operating distance

8. In-flight aiming of camera (up and down)

I'm considering this one. what do you think?

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...2R5CYMSA&psc=1
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Old 06-12-2020, 12:48 PM   #2
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I used to design and build many drones but am not current, you are asking a lot for $200

look into company DJI, they make good stuff
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Old 06-12-2020, 01:09 PM   #3
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That one looks like a DJI clone, but at a much cheaper price. I think I would be wary of it. I have two DJI Phantom 2, one standard, one advanced. The advanced has a better camera, and longer control range, but DJI is discontinuing support and parts for the Phantom series, so you may be able to get a used one pretty cheap. They were replaced by the "Mavic".
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Old 06-12-2020, 01:13 PM   #4
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Check out the Mavic Mini.

But not $200, rather $400-500.
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Old 06-12-2020, 01:28 PM   #5
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Thanks for the comments guys! I know I may not be able to have all those features for under $200, but a guy can dream, can't he?
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Old 06-12-2020, 02:10 PM   #6
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I had a DJI Mavic myself for several years and after owning several others I feel that DJI builds the best drones, and I agree totally with what everybody else said which is you won't get much for $200. An inexpensive drone will have some of the things you want but I think you will find they won't work as well or for as long.

Why do so many people recommend the Mavic? Here's one reason. With my other drones I always had a box full of spare parts, especially blades, and became very adept at repairing them.

My Mavic, I don't remember replacing any part on it including the blades, you probably won't realize how amazing that is until you own a drone.

But... I gave it away. It was getting more and more difficult to find a place to fly, and more and more people are expressing a dislike for drones and anyone flying them. Even when they couldn't see it they could hear it from pretty far away and didn't like the noise either. Sometimes I think about getting a little toy one just to play with in my RV every once in a while.

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Old 06-12-2020, 02:32 PM   #7
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I have a question about the auto return feature. I know that in an open field there would not be a problem. What happens if you maneuver it around obstacles, trees, etc. and it loses signal? Does it try to return in a straight line to the controller, or does it follow the original path including the same altitude? I can just imagine it in the top a a really big tree!
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Old 06-12-2020, 02:41 PM   #8
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Joe....is the drone for transporting beer or meds from one end of the coach to the other....because the size would matter!!

Seriously, I always look to see if spare parts are available. Often when you buy these things (China made) they're great until something breaks and you can't find parts. I've looked off and on and if you're not buying a DJi Phantom drone, the Mavic or the Holy Stone seem to be good drones. You've only got one more week for your wife to make it a Father's Day gift.
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Old 06-12-2020, 02:46 PM   #9
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I have a Mavic, but do not fly it much for same reason others mentioned. So many places do not allow and others will potentially upset someone.
The return to home function works by first flying straight up to a predetermined height which you can set.
Then it flys straight back and down.
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Old 06-12-2020, 02:54 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dutch Star Don View Post
Joe....is the drone for transporting beer or meds from one end of the coach to the other....because the size would matter!!

Seriously, I always look to see if spare parts are available. Often when you buy these things (China made) they're great until something breaks and you can't find parts. I've looked off and on and if you're not buying a DJi Phantom drone, the Mavic or the Holy Stone seem to be good drones. You've only got one more week for your wife to make it a Father's Day gift.
That's the idea Don!

What do you think about this one? Looks like it doesn't have the brushless motors. How important is that? I was just reading the 1-star reviews and many said it just took off on it's own, never to be seen again!

https://www.amazon.com/Holy-Stone-Qu..._t1_B0863CG57T
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Old 06-12-2020, 03:21 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MSHappyCampers View Post
I have a question about the auto return feature. I know that in an open field there would not be a problem. What happens if you maneuver it around obstacles, trees, etc. and it loses signal?
Hitting the Return button on my $130 drone (don't even remember the brand) causes it to climb to about 100' and then come directly to the "home" coordinates. It then slowly drops straight down. It doesn't sense trees or obstacles, so it can be a risky trip.
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Old 06-12-2020, 03:25 PM   #12
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I'm interested, too. In the $200 range would fit my billfold pretty good.
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Old 06-12-2020, 04:11 PM   #13
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I have a Potensic D85 that has everything except the adjustable in flight camera. A friend of mine has 2 Holy Stone hs700d . Same situation.


All can go out about 1,000 feet and up to about 1,500 feet. Flight times are about 20 minutes.


You do need to register with FAA since they are so heavy.


Return to home is great, hit the button and they rise to about a hundred feet and fly back to where they started and hover for a few seconds and then start descent, making corrections as they come down.


There are less expensive models from both manufacturers with all the same features.


We also try to not fly near obstacles.
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Old 06-12-2020, 04:17 PM   #14
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I've had thoughts about getting a drone. Off and on....

Problem is not the cost, but the politics associated with flying them. Several pilots have ruined it for many breaking laws about airspace, etc. We live 4 miles from an airport, so flying around my neighborhood is out of the question.

You need an open area to learn to fly them. Keeping an eye on them at first.

I used to build model gliders and fly them off a local ridge. Then they were banned due to the area becoming a city park with restrictions on model aircraft.

Good luck in your search. I would suggest spending a little more and get a better built drone that has support and parts. The one you listed would be a good learning drone, so if you crash it or otherwise lose it, not a huge investment loss. Obstacle avoidance would be a definite good thing.
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