Once you hop over the $100.00 barrier you can begin to clearly see what you are getting for that extra money, and also with each $100 increment from the $100.00 baseline, this becomes a price range where budget is seriously critical. Perhaps for this reason alone, we think the three drones we’ve got here are definitely the pick of the bunch in this price category, especially when you see the savings you can make.
With well-known brands including Parrot and UDI, you can feel confident that when spending this sort of money on a drone, you won’t be throwing your money away. Here we are definitely in ‘upgrade territory’, that price range where first-time drone pilots look when they want to start playing with the big boys’ toys, so expect to get a lot of bang for your bucks with the three drones we have selected as great bargains.
Parrot Bebop 2 – White Was $549.99 Now $468.26 Save $81.73
It was probably only a matter of time before the Bebop 2 dipped below the $500 mark, and at $468.26 that is actually lower than we would have expected to find it anywhere. So what’s to like about the Bebop 2 – the list would be a lot shorter if it was things we didn’t like, that’s for sure. For the price, it still amazes us that you also get a built-in 14m megapixel camera when so many drones in this price range simply have the gimbal for you to attach a GoPro camera to that will set you back more than a few dollars.
Parrot have not skimped on the battery either, as the Bebop 2 boasts an impressive 25-minute flight time. The ‘fisheye’ lens in the camera allows for a full 186-degree field of view from a First Person View (FPV) perspective and the 3-axis stabilization gives you a steady picture regardless of any turbulence. The 14m megapixel camera allows you to stream video in 1080p quality which has to be seen to be believed, especially when you consider this drone can fly at speeds up to 38mph.
With two Parrot drones on our bargain list, we suspect that there will be some new Parrot drones due for release shortly. However, we also anticipate that on first release, these will be a great deal more expensive, whatever the alterations made.
Parrot AR Drone 2.0 Elite Edition Quadcopter – Jungle Was $299.00 Now $211.71 Save $88.28
Once again we have the trusted name of Parrot behind a drone, so you can be assured of quality and reliability, and here a great discount too. This is a clever drone as you don’t need a bulky hand-held controller, you can use your iOS or Android smartphine to control it, or even a tablet. While using your smartphone you can get a direct stream to it from the 720p high-definition camera.
For the price, a 12-minute flying time is impressive, but it is the smartphone app that really separates this drone from many others. You can use it to switch between the HD front camera to give you a pilot’s eye view, or the vertical camera which gives you a more aerial view of the ground. The app generates its own Wi-Fi network, so you can comfortably fly this miles from anywhere. The only restriction of this is it gives you roughly a 50m range.
Parrot has patented the Absolute Control piloting mode which enables you to control the drone more easily. Then there comes The Flip. This is a unique acrobatic move designed specifically for his model which allows it to do barrel rolls as well as forward and backward flips and automatically recover afterwards.
UDI U818A Wi-Fi FPV RC Quadcopter Drone Was $249.99 Now £127.87 Save $122.12
If you’ve already got a VR headset, then this is definitely the drone for you. Remarkably, with the new reduced price tag, you’ll be surprised to learn that you still get a 2MP forward-facing camera, while the drone itself can be controlled using your iOS or Android smartphone. Whether direct to you FPV headset, or the screen of your smartphone, streaming is instant, with no lag, which really brings your flights to life. Pictures are smooth thanks to 6-axis gyro stability.
Once you get into this price range, any additional safety features are welcome to avoid any costly crashes. With the U818A there is not only a low battery alarm, but also a ‘return to home’ function which is activated with the simple push of a button. The four rotors are also heavily protected with the all-round safety guard. There is also a seriously smart gravity induction mode, which allows you to fly your drone either backwards or forwards, to the left or right, at an angle that corresponds to the angle of your smartphone.
And for those of you who suffer from insomnia, the LED running lights and remote control signal light makes life as easy as possible for you. Rounded off with a 15-minute flight time, there’s a great deal to recommend about this drone, especially at this new price.
Our Recommendation – Despite being the most expensive in this price bracket, the Parrot Bebop 2 is remarkable value at under $500.00 and is a drone which has already stood the test of time and received superb reviews ever since it first came out.