In just the past few years, drones have transformed from a geeky hobbyist affair to a full-on cultural phenomenon. They’re everywhere now, and they’re available in just about any shape, size, or configuration you could ever want. The market is absolutely saturated with them now, so to help you navigate the increasingly large and ever-changing landscape of consumer UAVs, we put together a definitive list of the best drones on the planet right now. So without further ado, here’s the cream of the quadcopter crop.
Why you should buy this: It has all the features you need in a drone, yet is still compact enough to fit in a backpack or purse
Who it’s for: Anyone looking for a full-featured yet highly portable drone
How much it’ll cost: $999
Why we chose the DJI Mavic Pro
What makes the Mavic Pro so amazing is that, despite the fact that it’s one of the most compact and portable drones we’ve ever flown, it’s also one of the most capable and full-featured. It’s equipped with a 4K camera, a 3-axis gimbal, forward obstacle avoidance, tons of autopilot modes, range over four miles, and somehow it still fits in the palm of your hand. It’s living proof that scaling down size doesn’t necessarily mean scaling back on features, and that big things really can come in small packages.
The portability factor is huge. Thanks to a very clever hinge system, the Mavic’s arms fold up into a neat little package just smaller than the dimensions of your average brick, which makes it a breeze to stuff in your backpack or messenger bag and lug along on your adventures. Photographers always say that the best camera is the one you have with you, and the same could definitely be said for drones. If it’s portable, you’re far more likely to have it with you when you need it.
When it comes to portable drones, the Mavic Pro has no equal — at least not yet. The GoPro Karma is arguably its closest competitor, but it can’t match the Mavic in range, speed, compactness, or flight capabilities.