Top 10 Best Drones Of 2021

Are you looking for the best drone you can buy right now? You knocked on the right door. We tested all the latest models of DJI, Parrot, Hubsan, Potensic and many other manufacturers, and grouped our findings in this ranking of the 10 best drones.

Drones are a great tool to take a new look at photography and video, and there’s never been a better time to buy one. Thanks to recent advances and fierce competition between major manufacturers, you can now enjoy professional-quality aerial images with a foldable drone that fits into your backpack!

Right now, the best drone on the market is probably the DJI Mavic 2 Pro. This versatile drone combines intuitive controls, a multitude of shooting modes and superb image quality. It is the ideal choice for amateurs, but also for professionals who are looking for a friendly model for their travels.

If you prefer a drone that is a little cheaper but your requirements are still high, then the DJI Mavic Air 2, the DJI Mavic Mini and the Parrot Anafi are also excellent choices. If you are a novice or are willing to make concessions on certain criteria (battery life, range, features), mid-range drones such as the Hubsan H501S, the Potensic T35 or the Eachine E520S should perfectly meet your expectations. Finally, if you’re going to introduce a toddler to the joys of flying, the DJI Ryze Tello is the perfect fit.

Whichever drone you choose, we’re convinced that you’ll take your foot off the gas, and that’s all the evil we wish you! Excellent reading and the pleasure of meeting you in the air!

Dji Ryze Tello

Range: 100 metres |  Battery Life: 13 minutes |  Camera: HD 720P

In general, drones that cost a hundred euros do not justify being interested. They are fragile, lack advanced features and are usually very noisy in flight. But the DJI Ryze Tello is different. Although it’s only $109, it’s full of high-end features and features.

Under the hood, you’ll find an Intel microchip for 14-core image processing, DJI’s flight stabilization technology, a 5-megapixel camera capable of filming 720p HD videos and a 13-minute battery.

Alas, this drone doesn’t come with a controller, so you’re forced to fly the DJI Ryze Tello via virtual joysticks on a smartphone app: a control mode that’s known to be soft and imprecise. The good news, however, is that Ryze designed the drone so that he could use third-party devices. So, if you prefer to fly with a real controller under your thumbs, you can get a Tello GameSir controller and connect it to your drone.

Potensic T25

Range: 300 metres |  Battery Life: 10 minutes |  Camera: Full HD 1080P

The Potensic T25 is one of the best drones for less than 200 euros, and it’s a real beast of the air. It is equipped with integrated GPS technology, which gives it great stability during flights and aerial shots. This stability is very appreciable in flight, especially if you want to use the stunning camera that this drone has.

The camera is indeed the real star of this drone. With a high definition of 1080p, the quality is simply remarkable for a drone at this price. We were very surprised by the beauty of the videos and photos. You can also fly in FPV mode when you connect your mobile device to the drone. This mode is great for having the feeling of flying inside the drone.

While it has many features that will satisfy seasoned pilots, the Potensic T25 also offers a number of features that will help beginners take off without difficulty. The steering is indeed simple, and the progression phase is very fast. You’ll have the option to activate “Return To Home” mode, “Follow Me” mode (the drone follows and films you) or the “Personalized Flight Path” mode, which allows you to plan an itinerary in advance.

The main weakness of the Potensic T25 is the battery life, which is only 10 minutes. However, it comes with 2 batteries. On the other hand, it has a maximum range of 300 metres, which is quite reasonable. This is a range that is suitable for both novice and intermediate pilots, but experienced pilots may require a little more.

Snaptain SP500

Range: 220 metres |  Battery Life: 15 minutes |  Camera: Full HD 1080P

The Snaptain SP500 is a compact and foldable drone that you can easily take with you on the road. It has a robust construction for a handheld drone, and has a host of other compelling features. It comes with two good quality modular batteries that will allow you to fly for 30 minutes (2 x 15 minutes).

The controller’s range is 220 m, which is relatively honorable for a drone in this price range. The Snaptain SP500 works with a GPS module that makes it easier for the pilot to orient himself while at the controls. A “return home” function automatically returns the drone to its starting position if it is out of range or if the battery is low.

Inexperienced users will benefit from the single-touch take-off/landing feature, which simplifies the drone’s airing. Other smart flight modes such as “Follow Me” and GPS Crossing Points enhance flight safety while making the experience more challenging.

The Snaptain SP500 uses a Full HD 1080P camera to capture high-resolution images. The camera has a field of view of 110 degrees and can be set at a 40-degree angle. This not only allows you to take sharper shots, but also to customize the viewing angles.

A stabilizer prevents distortions and tremors by maintaining the camera’s position when piloting the drone in windy conditions. The camera is also compatible with 5G Wi-Fi; you can connect to your smartphone via wi-Fi signal and share real-time videos of the drone.

Eachine E520S

Range: 300 metres |  Autonomy: 15 minutes |  Camera: Full HD 1080P

If you’re looking for a drone with a low-cost HD camera, the Eachine E520S is a great choice. This well-designed foldable drone weighs less than 300g and incorporates several powerful devices, the most notable of which is its HD camera. It’s also equipped with a GPS for a more stable flight experience and 3 smart flight modes that will amaze your family and friends.

The Eachine E520S is equipped with a 1200 mAh lipo battery, which allows you to fly for about 15 minutes, which is longer than most other drones in its price range. The controller has a transmission range of about 300 meters and if you use FPV mode, you can transmit video images over a maximum distance of 250 meters.

The flight performance of the Eachine E520S is generally positive. It remains stable, even in windy weather, and its steering is not a problem, although interference may occur when using FPV mode. Three speed options are available, and the drone reacts promptly to changes direction, even at the fastest speed.

Like many modern drones, the Eachine E520S has several intelligent flight modes. These modes make it easy to fly and take videos and images, because you don’t have to worry about controlling the drone. These include the “Waypoint” mode that allows you to plot a route on the app, the “Surround/Orbit” mode that puts the drone in orbit around the person holding the transmitter, and the “Follow Me” mode that locks the drone on you and follows you wherever you go. The drone also has an automatic return function at the starting point. If you see the battery draining or you lose sight of the drone, just press the controller’s “RTH” button and the drone will come back to you.

When you read the drone’s product sheet, it is immediately thought that this drone can record video sequences in 4K. However, this is misleading because the drone can only take 4K photos while the video footage is recorded in 1080p. For the price at which this drone is sold, you can’t really expect 4K video footage, but that doesn’t excuse them from misleading advertising. The camera is still well designed and you can take beautiful video scenes and striking aerial images. It has a 120-degree aperture, which provides a wide angle for recording and capturing grand scenes, and you can set the camera to 90 degrees to adjust your preferred angles of view.

Potensic T35

Range: 300 metres |  Battery Life: 15 minutes |  Camera: Full HD 1080P

The Potensic T35 looks like the DJI Phantom 4 Pro, although it’s not as bulky or as heavy. In addition to its neat design, this drone is characterized by its robustness and its great stability in the air, even in difficult conditions.

The drone is powered by a 7.4 V 2500 mAh lipo battery, a modular battery of modern design that keeps its charge longer and offers about 15 minutes of flight time. It is equipped with LED lights that indicate its charge level and takes about 5 hours to fully recharge, which is long.

The controller covers a range of about 300 meters while the FPV mode only works up to about 150 meters, which is pretty much the norm for drones in this price range. To use FPV and smart flight modes, you need to download the official app called Potensic G. It is compatible with Android and iOS phones. The app is easy to use, with a clear interface and beginner tutorials that will help you avoid piloting errors.

Like most newer drones, the Potensic T35 has advanced features that will help you fly it more easily and have more fun. These features include a dual GPS (GPS – GLONASS), the “Waypoint” mode that allows you to draw a route on the app, the “Follow Me” mode that orders the drone to follow you wherever you go, or the “Automatic Home Back home” mode, which automatically repatriates the drone if you lose the connection or if the battery discharges.

As for the Potensic T35’s camera, it allows you to take beautiful videos and beautiful photos thanks to its wide angle lens adjustable to 90 degrees, which is attached to a 9-axis gyroscope that resists the wind and is particularly stable in flight. The camera has a micro SD card slot that can accommodate a memory card up to 32GB. To benefit from 1080p high definition, you’ll need to record your videos on the memory card. The quality of live streaming is only 720p.

Hubsan H501S

Range: 400 metres |  Battery Life: 18 minutes |  Camera: Full HD 1080P

The Hubsan H501S is a fantastic drone with a highly successful design, with amazing features, including a high-definition camera and remote control with a built-in 4.3-inch LCD screen. In other words, you won’t need to use your smartphone to enjoy FPV mode. It comes with two GPS modules for more precise positioning and two autonomous flight modes. Although dating back a few years, it remains one of the most popular drones on the market and is a top-notch option for anyone looking for a low-cost HD camera drone.

The Hubsan H501S is one of the first drones to be equipped with brushless engines. Brushless engines are much more powerful, more reliable and last longer. These engines give the drone a great thrust on take-off and also make it much sharper than other drones in its class. The drone is powered by a lipo battery of 7.4v 2700 mAh which gives it a flight range of about 18 minutes, while the transmission range is 400 meters in optimal conditions, which is rather remarkable.

Although the Hubsan H501S is a few years old, the accompanying camera is still very powerful, even when compared to the cameras of newer drones. It’s a 1080p HD camera with a wide angle lens that will allow you to capture beautiful aerial images and videos. Although the camera does not have a stabilization device like a cardan, the images and videos are clear with little distortion. Another feature of the camera is that you can connect a virtual reality headset to the controller and receive the live video stream in the headset for a more immersive flight experience.

While the HD camera is the drone’s main attraction, it comes with many other features that will enrich your flying experience and give you more fun. These features include dual GPS (GPS and GLONASS for more precise positioning), an “altitude maintenance” mode that allows the drone to maintain a constant altitude in hovering, an “Orbit” mode that allows the drone to rotate around a point of interest, a “Follow me” mode that tells the drone to follow you, and an “Automatic Return home” mode that automatically activates if you lose the connection becomes too weak.

Parrot Anafi

Range: 4000 metres |  Battery Life: 25 minutes |  Camera: Full HD 4K

This light drone, which looks like an insect, may be small, but its shots are among the most impressive. The Parrot Anafi carries a 180-degree vertical tilt camera that allows for cross-diving shots; a feat that no other drone can match. It also has a 2.8x zoomable lens without reducing image quality.

Parrot has improved its FreeFlight application for the release of its Anafi drone. The app is now much more intuitive to use. The configuration of flight speeds (film or sport), the choice of shots or video settings (4K, Full HD, exposure, etc.) now go through menus that appear at the bottom of the smartphone screen. So a few clicks are all it takes to activate the main functions.

The Parrot Anafi is a particularly wise choice for selfie enthusiasts. Its “Follow Me” mode tracks your movements, automatically adjusting for more photogenic angles, and its SmartDronies modes – Orbit, Parabola, Boomerang and Tornado – make the drone fly around you, describing various trajectories or arcs.

The main drawback of the Parrot Anafi is that it does not avoid obstacles, which makes it difficult to recommend to beginners. It is also a pity that some flight modes are locked and require additional expenses in the application.

Note that a new Parrot Anafi FPV kit has recently been launched, which combines this drone with FPV (first-person view) glasses for a fully immersive flight experience. What to vary the pleasures!

Dji Mavic Mini

Range: 2000 metres |  Battery Life: 30 minutes |  Camera: Full HD 2.7K

The DJI Mavic Mini is arguably the best mid-range camera drone for the general public. It weighs only 249g and is so small that it can be hidden under an iPhone 11 and easily slip into a trouser pocket. Its low weight, small size and flexible front propellers also give it a better chance of surviving a possible crash.

The Mavic Mini’s camera allows 1080p videos to be filmed at a frequency of up to 60 frames per second and 2.7K videos at a frequency of up to 30 frames per second. His 12 MP photos are very sharp and rich in detail.

Despite its wingspan, the drone is surprisingly stable in flight and is both fast and agile in Sport mode. It can easily fly for 30 minutes with a single battery and up to 2 km away. On the other hand, the DJI Mavic Mini does not have an obstacle avoidance function.

The Mavic Mini is available in two versions. The basic pack includes a controller, battery, charger, spare accessories, a 32GB Micro SD card and a bunch of different cables. The Combo Fly More pack includes a beautiful transport case, four batteries, a charger to recharge four batteries at a time and propeller protections for indoor flight.

If you’re looking for a high-quality drone, but don’t want to slam a fortune, then the Mavic Mini DJI is a very interesting option. It is remarkably stable and reliable in flight, easy to maneuver and can capture great images.

Dji Mavic Air 2

Range: 10,000 metres |  Battery Life: 34 minutes |  Camera: 4K Ultra HD

A true revolution compared to the original DJI Mavic Air, the DJI Mavic Air 2 is the best drone for beginners and enthusiasts. A simple version of the DJI Mavic 2 Pro, this drone combines the ability to make beautiful 4K 60fps videos, a multitude of shooting settings and a remarkable flight time of 34 minutes.

This drone offers a much longer flight time (34 minutes) and a better range than the original Mavic Air. But the real attraction for photographers and videographers lies in the new 4K 60fps camera, which features a 48-megapixel 1/2-inch CMOS sensor. This one guarantees better ISO performance than its predecessor and supports 1080p slo-mo video up to 240fps.

The DJI Mavic Air 2 features a completely redesigned controller, which we like, with the ability to insert your smartphone directly on top, as is the case with high-end drones. The controller also integrates Ocusync 2.0 connectivity, which increases its range by up to 10 km and improves signal stability to the DJI Fly app.

With its forward, downward and backward position sensors, the drone is not only able to identify obstacles and warn the pilot, but also to plot a trajectory to avoid, for example, a wall or tree if necessary.

With the subject tracking mode and all well-known Quickshot automatic modes, the Mavic Air 2 DJI is the perfect balance between the more basic DJI Mavic Mini and the more expensive DJI Mavic 2 Pro. As with other DJI drones, a “Fly More” pack is available, which includes essential accessories (transport case, spare batteries, etc.). The latter costs more, of course, but it is often a wise investment.

Dji Mavic 2 Pro

Range: 8000 metres |  Battery Life: 31 minutes |  Camera: 4K HDR

The DJI Mavic 2 Pro retains its status as the best high-end drone for several reasons: it has a large sensor, it is very pleasant to fly and its foldable design makes it very convenient to carry. If you’re primarily looking for a travel drone, the Mavic Mini DJI is also worth a look. Otherwise, this drone is extremely versatile if you need a quality a little higher than that of the DJI Mavic Air 2.

The Mavic 2 Pro is equipped with a three-axis Hasselblad cardan camera, which is equipped with a one-inch CMOS sensor – like Sony’s RX100 and RX10 series – and an adjustable aperture that ranges from f/2.8 to f/11. It is a remarkable equipment capable of filming in several video resolutions, including 4K up to 30 frames per second, 2.7K up to 60 frames per second and 1080p up to 120 frames per second.

The drone also allows you to take 20-megapixel RAW photos with striking sharpness. The Mavic 2 Pro also supports the 10-bit Dlog-M color profile for post-production color calibration and 10-bit HDR video for striking hyperrealistic images.

Moreover, despite its impressive performance, the DJI Mavic 2 Pro is easy to drive and its control proves intuitive. In flight, the drone is as reliable as we expected and inspires confidence. Thanks to new, more powerful engines mounted on its four arms, the drone is now capable of reaching a speed of 72 km/h in Sport mode and, thanks to a more powerful battery, it can stay in the air for up to 31 minutes in a row. It is also very quiet, so discreet that you can hear it barely 30 meters away.

Its Occusync 2.0 transmission, meanwhile, offers a very accurate 1080p live streaming up to a distance of 8 km. Like the previous Mavic, the DJI Mavic 2 Pro is equipped with an 8GB internal memory and a Micro SD card slot. The controller is virtually the same as the original, but it has a three-way gearbox (normal, sporty or tripod for slow film shooting) for convenience.

For the DJI Go 4 app, the Mavic 2 Pro features a set of smart flight modes, as well as a Hyperlapse feature that captures stop-frame images over a wide area before merging them into the app.

Ultimately, the DJI Mavic 2 Pro benefits from the most advanced flight and camera technologies currently available, allowing it to provide professional-quality images while remaining accessible even to beginners. It is the perfect drone for most amateurs and professionals, if you can afford it of course.

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Pierpont Tétrault
A trained professional drone pilot, Pier also dabbles in photography and other visual arts during his free time.