Whatever activity you try your hand at, you always start off as a beginner. Hey, even the likes of Lionel Messi or Serena Williams were beginners once upon a time. And who knows? Maybe you’ll reach the heights of an elite droning competition one day.
For now though, it’s all about learning the ropes — or rotor blades, to be specific. To help you get started, we’ve looked for the best and most capable drones available.
Indeed, picking a drone isn’t as easy as it seems. There are different types of drone-based activities plus regulations (that’s right, regulations) to be mindful of before you get your frequent drone flyers miles. That goes for whether you’re interested in drone photography or racing or something else entirely. Here’s what you need to know.
What is a drone?
It seems simple but it’s worth reiterating. You’ve probably heard a lot about drones in recent years. They’re not just an increasingly popular gadget but drones sometimes they make news headlines too, thanks to their use in military and aerospace technologies. In basic terms, drones are remote-controlled aerial vehicles. They can be controlled and utilised in a variety of ways — not to mention flown at various distances and heights, depending on how advanced they are.
Are there different types of drones?
In terms of the kind of drones listed here — i.e. drones used for leisure activities — the most common type is the multi-rotor drone. They’re often small and lightweight and have four rotors (sometimes called quadcopters). Most of the drones on the list are also “mini” — palm sized flyers that are easily portable, but still come equipped with decent camera equipment and other features.
What are the main uses for a drone?
The most common uses for drones are photography and racing. Some drones have HD cameras and are capable of recording and transmitting 4K quality footage. Depending on the drone, device, and app you’re using, they may be able to transmit this footage in real time or even post straight to social media. Drones are used by filmmakers and professional photographers, but are also great for fun snaps and general use. Racing drones tend to fall in the FVP category. Of course, you can just get a drone for straight-up leisure. The fun of remote control flying never goes out of style.
Is it hard to fly a drone?
If you’re a semi-experienced gamer — and these days, who isn’t? — it should be simple enough to learn. Drones are controlled by either a handheld controller or a smart device app. Conversely, FVP drones (which stands for “first person view”) allow you to control your drone by beaming a real-time video to your device or a pair of VR-like googles. In other words, it puts you in the pilot’s seat.
How far does a drone fly?
As these are beginner-level drones, they fly from a range of anything between 80 and 500 metres. Our top pick, however, will fly out several miles. It all depends on the kind of tech you want and how much you’re willing to spend.
How do you register your drone?
It may come as a surprise but if your drone weighs over 2.5kg, you have to register it with the CAA (Civil Aviation Authority) for a small fee. Piloting an unregistered drone is against the law. Go to CAA.co.uk for all the rules and regulations and CAA Consultations for drone registration. Luckily all the drones on this list fly just under the weight limit, but it’s still worth checking out all the rules and regulations.
Once you’ve done that you can start thinking about which device you actually want.
What is the best drone for beginners?
We have done all the hard work and tracked down the best devices for every type of beginner, taking into consideration the safety features and settings that will help prevent accidents and mishaps.
These are the best drones for beginners in 2021.