For under $100.00 it is amazing just what you can get where a drone or quadcopter is concerned. Holy Stone is a trusted and well-known name where drones are concerned, so that will put your mind at rest straight away. Here at Quadcopters.com we consider any drone under the $100.00 mark as ‘entry level’, yet to attach that label to this drone would lead you to think that it is fairly basic and not well made. You’d be wrong on both counts if you did, so perhaps already you will be realising that this drone is great value for money.
Straight out of the box we think you will be really impressed with the look of this little beauty. It has sleek lines, a wealth of colored LED lights and a solid and compact feel to it. This has ‘please fly me’ stamped all across it (not literally!) and as you will discover for yourself, flying it is great fun.
Normally with a review we try to balance the good with the bad, but to be frank, George, Eric or Brian, or whatever name you prefer, we are struggling to find anything wrong. Like all drones and quadcopters, recharging time of the battery is a pain and far too slow, but there is the option to buy a fast charger, plus spare batteries (which are relatively cheap and $20.00 for the charger and a couple of extra batteries should cover it), which solves that problem nicely.
For an ‘entry level’ quadcopter what we also appreciate about this vehicle is how straightforward and easy it is to fly, but in the same token, you are not severely restricted in what you can do with it – it is great for ‘flipping’, though we should warn that when you do this, there is a delay of up to two seconds before it responds to further controls – basically don’t flip it when flying towards a wall or tree!
You actually get a double ‘buzz’ from this machine. Firstly, it has a great sound, which is important. It really gives you the sound of an aircraft, which is what you want, and then there is the ‘buzz’ of flying it. With up to eight minutes’ flight time and a range of approaching 100m, there is a lot you can do in that time before bringing it safely back to base to change the battery, a task made appreciably easier and safer with a return to base button.
The camera is also worth a mention, though here we aren’t going to set the world alight, primarily through the lack of a stabilizing gimbal. That could be a criticism, but we have to remind you that this is not a $500.00 plus quadcopter. You will see from videos taken using the onboard HD 1280 x 720p camera that the quality of the video imagery is great, but it is just not as stable and fluid as you will get when you move up a class. This actually makes a lot of sense as while flying is one aspect of drones, drone videos are becoming incredibly popular and you will want to see an upgrade in your video when you move into the $500.00 plus bracket.
Overall? If you haven’t quite got the message, then our advice if you are toying with the idea of getting a drone (excuse the pun), is start with this one. Our fear is if you start off with too cheap a drone you will not get a realistic impression of the fun you could have.
Other drones you may consider: