Fresh list of top 10 drones you can buy for less than $50 [2017]

As you already might know, drones are not nearly as expensive as they were a couple of years ago when they first hit the mainstream market. Back then, they had enormous price tags and not a lot of people were able to afford them. Only those with huge salaries or proper drone enthusiasts were entitled to one.

drones under 50

Luckily, those days are well past us as drones nowadays come in a huge variety of shapes, sizes and of course – prices. In this list, we are going to focus on the dirt-cheap drones under $50 that will not make a huge dent in your wallet. They are budget-friendly and often called “Chinese toys” which, in my honest opinion, puts them under a bad spotlight. Rumor has it that all cheap drones (we are talking $50 and below) are bad and will stop working for just a couple of days after the initial purchase.

While this might be true for some of them, there are still great budget drones that will spark your imagination. Some of them deserve your attention which is exactly why we made this list in the first place. So, without further adue, let’s jump straight to business and check out the best drones that you can get for under $50!

Table : Best Drones under $50 :

NameImageCameraRangeTimePrice
10. Cheerson CX-10cx-10wdNo30m6 minSee price now
9. Eachine H8No30m7 minSee price now
8. MJX X902 X902tecNo30m6 minSee price now
7. JJRC H36No30m5 minSee price now
6. HUBSAN X4 (H107C)hubsan-x4-h107c0.3MP90m7 minSee price now
5. HASAKEE MINIhasakee-mini0.3MP40m6 minSee price now
4. AKASO X5Cakaso-x5c1 MP60m6 minSee price now
3. UFO 3000ufo-3000No35m5 minSee price now
2. RC STUNT DRONErc-stunt-droneNo25m6 minSee price now
1. Holy Stone HS170holy-stone-hs170No50m8 minSee price now

What can you expect from such cheap drones?

GREAT FIRST STEPS

The first one is rather obvious and goes without much question. These cheap mini flyers serve well as beginner-friendly learning platforms and that’s an outright fact.

They are intuitive, responsive and well capable of guiding you through your first steps in the world of drones.

Plus, that’s not the only thing these bad boys are capable of…

SOLID PERFORMANCE

Even though they are relatively small and don’t possess powerful brushless motors, these birdies are still capable of providing you with a stellar all-around performance. Don’t expect too much though as their prices are a good reflection of their power.

Comparing these baddies to premium models won’t do them much justice, but that’s only because they are meant for 2 completely different types of users.

WORRY-FREE FLYING

Another thing these birdies are great at is delivering worry-free flying to their users.

That’s not only because they are cheap to replace (if they break) but they also possess weak motors and cannot do a lot of harm to people or objects.

However, you should still supervise your children if they are learning to fly drones for the first time!

 

Are these drones children-friendly?

cheap drones for kidsYes! Each and every single one of drones listed below can be considered as a children-friendly model. However, children younger than 7 are probably not the most suitable age group. On the bright side, children older than 7 are most4 likely to have a blast learning to fly these birdies.

This is partially so due to the sheer simplicity of these models. They don’t possess any advanced features which are a must-have with premium ones. Nope! They just have a controlling board that has 4 motors attached to it with the addition of LED lights in some cases. Cameras are present as well, but they’re usually scarce (or produce terrible image quality) in this price tier.

Basically, it all comes down to a simple conclusion – with an incredibly simple interface and responsive controls, these birdies are highly suitable for children. So, with that said, if you are looking to get your little ones a toy that will keep them away from their video games and smartphones, drones are your best bet!

 

Do they come with everything needed to get them flying?

Yes! All drones listed below come with everything you need to get them flying straight out of the box! All of them are RTF (ready to fly) drones which means you’ll only have to provide your own AA or AAA batteries (in some cases) for the controllers.

As a matter of fact, not only do they come ready to fly but some of them even go out of their way to include spare parts. These will do you a world of good since you won’t have to order new ones as soon as something breaks. Extra batteries are a known factor too, but I suppose you won’t find many dirt cheap drones sporting them nowadays. Up the price tier to drones under $100 and such traits are looking more likely to be around!

 

Drone flying tips for beginners : 

1. Don’t go too fast

The first mistake most beginners tend to make is going way too fast during their first flying session. Don’t be like them; don’t go all crazy with the throttle stick. Instead, wiggle it gently at first to get a proper feeling for your drone. After that, if you are feeling comfortable enough, it is time to rock it to around 50-60%… Push it too high and you will end up losing control, I guarantee it.

2. Practice makes perfect

If you happen to crash your drone or, God forbid, break something during your first flying session, don’t be disheartened. Flying a drone (even fully stabilized ones) is a tough nut to crack for beginners. The learning curve is not that steep though, and with a little practice, I am sure you will get the hang of it in less than a week! After that first week, you will keep getting better and eventually able to land swift and precise turns like a champ!

3. Indoor flying

If you are having difficulties with learning the basics of flying outside, then perhaps it would be a good idea to give indoor flying a try. The latter provides a much easier learning experience without the negative effects of wind that can sweep the drone off its course. This is even more so if we take into consideration a plethora of micro drones featured on the list below. As a matter of fact, some of these birdies are indoor-only, meaning they don’t fare well with wind.

 

10. Cheerson CX-10

The cheapest drone on this list is the nano-drone by Cheerson. This little fella has already made its way into thousands of households worldwide, and as far as we can see, it isn’t planning to stop. Needless to say, it is making quite the name for itself on the market with its incredibly compact size, decent

Needless to say, it is making quite the name for itself on the market with its incredibly compact size, decent specifications, and a dirt-cheap price. For the price of one restaurant meal, you will get a super small drone that you’re able to fly around indoors. Sure, you can fly it outdoor too, but it’s really lightweight and if there’s even a smallest of breezes, it will tamper with its sensors and render it unflyable.

Specification-wise, it can last up to 6 minutes in midair which is great considering it needs to charge for just over half an hour. Its control range is great too – it can reach up to 30 meters but I doubt you will ever let it wander off that far away because you won’t be able to see it at such a huge distance. All things considered, if you want a small drone that you can use for practicing without having to worry about breaking it, the Cheerson CX-10 is a great choice!

Show me the best price for : Ashburn, United States

 

9. Eachine H8

EACHINE-H8-MINI_webThe second drone on this list is made by Eachine. Their H8 model is another miniature drone (a bit bigger than CX-10 due to its prop guards reaching far out from the rest of its build) which has headless mode, bright LEDs, one key return to home and 3D tumbling features. Obviously, we are talking about nice additions to such a cheap drone. But, on top of that, is there anything else noteworthy about this miniature flyer?

Well, for starters, Eachine H8 is extremely lightweight which can be a problem if you are planning on flying it outdoor. H8’s flight time is around 7 minutes while his flying distance is about 30 meters away from its transmitter. Do you think this is the best drone under $50?

Well, perhaps you will when I tell you how nimble this little bugger is. You see, not only is it lightweight and small but it has no input lag making it highly responsive. Plus, it sports a tiny controller that first into children’s hands perfectly. That’s, of course, bad news for adults who think of buying this little birdie… but in reality, it is meant primarily for younger audiences.

Show me the best price for : Ashburn, United States

 

8. MJX X902

tec-bean-x902This interesting looking drone kind of resembles an actual spider with its prop guards that are reaching downwards from the propellers. As a matter of fact, not only are its prop guards facing downwards but motors and props too, making up for a rather unconventional appearance.

Needless to say, prop guards serve as an extra layer of protection in case you happen to crash your drone somewhere. Furthermore, crashes shouldn’t really be an issue since this birdie is lightweight and will simply bounce off after hitting walls and similar objects. With that said, let’s take a closer look at this cool looking birdie and see what’s it all about!

With 2 bright LEDs, 2 speed modes (slow and fast), 3D tumbling and good stabilization, there Is no doubt that the X902 will provide you with a great deal of fun. When it comes to its specifications, you will be happy to know that it can fly up to 7 minutes and reach more than 30 meters without any sort of lag issues. On a side note though, considering we are talking about a palm-sized drone which doesn’t have a lot of propulsion force (or weight), it might be a good idea to keep it for indoor-flights only.

Show me the best price for : Ashburn, United States

 

7. JJRC H36

JJRC-H36_webMicro brushed racing quadcopters are getting a huge part of the market. This was not the case a while back when the tiniest racers you could find were at least 150mm. These days, however, such miniature drones are being equipped with powerful motors enabling them to whoop all over people’s homes without breaking a sweat. If that’s exactly what you are looking for in your first drone, then JJRC H36 is a no-brainer!

Being priced at below $20, people often think this is a bad investment that is going to break in a matter of days. However, that’s not the usual case since this birdie sports all around prop guards which make it bounce off of walls after crashing into them. It’s as safe as it can be in terms of people and objects. As a matter of fact, even if it breaks, it is easy to fix it since spare parts are available from virtually all web shops you can think of.

As far as the specifications are concerned, JJRC H36 isn’t that bad either. Even though it has a slightly lower airtime (5 minutes) than other competitors (higher priced though, it achieves the same 30-meter range which is the standard for this price range. But, the real fun with this little birdie starts once you equip it with one of those mini AIO FPV systems. They weigh just 3-4 grams which means JJRC H36 can lift if without much issues…

Show me the best price for : Ashburn, United States

 

6. Hubsan X4 (H107C)

hubsan-x4-h107cHubsan has made yet another amazing drone that will amaze you with both its features and specifications. Of course, it has the industry standard 6-axis gyro, but in addition to that, it is equipped with a VGA camera module that is able to record decent quality aerial footage.

That’s right, Hubsan X4 H107C sports a miniature camera! However, it does not come with a memory card which means you will have to grab your own (works only with Micro SDHC cards). Moving forward, this little birdie is made out of sturdy, lightweight material which in combination with its powerful motors enables it to fly pretty fast. Still, don’t expect it to reach speeds of racing drones, but given his small size, you won’t find many similar ones that can go faster.

Specification-wise, Hubsan X4 H107C can last up to 7 minutes in air and can travel around 90 meters away from its transmitter. This number is amazing, especially for this price range in which most of the drones cannot go more than 50. So yeah, Hubsan X4 H107C can be considered as a dirt cheap exploration drone… if you are able to see it at such a huge distance.

Show me the best price for : Ashburn, United States

 

5. Hasakee Mini

hasakee-miniHasakee is not such a well-known drone brand, but kudos to them because they just released a pretty neat little drone with great design. It comes in 2 main colors – blue and yellow, accompanied by black propellers and their respective guards. All in all, it makes up for a great appearance. But, is appearance the only cool thing about this drone? Not by a long shot…

Another cool thing about this drone is that it offers live FPV with its 0.3MP camera which is an outstanding feature in this price range. You won’t see many drones under $50 that offer this. In addition to this, it is also important to add that it is equipped with headless mode, 2 speed modes (beginner and experienced) and one key 360 rolls. As a matter of fact, I believe Hasakee Mini is among the best value for money drones in this department, mostly due to its great build quality and the presence of a camera, no matter how low quality it might be.

And finally, Hasakee Mini doesn’t disappoint in specification department either. With up to 7 minutes of flight time and more than 50 meters of lag-free range, it justifies its place on this list. Great looking drone with plenty of features and admirable specifications – what else could you want from a drone that costs just over $35?

Show me the best price for : Ashburn, United States

 

4. AKASO X5C

akaso-x5cAkaso is not the most known drone manufacturer, but they do surprise us with a decent drone every now and then. Nothing different cannot be said about their newest model bearing the X5C nametag. Of course, I’m sure you all realize that we are discussing an outright Syma X5C copy but with a couple of differences on the line. Let’s check them out and see how does Akaso X5C perform!

First off, it needs to be stated that we are talking about a pretty small and lightweight drone that has a solid shock resistance due to its plastic prop guards that aim to decrease collision impacts. However, it is actually bigger than all previously featured drones, meaning that it can do equally well both indoor and outdoor.

Other than that, it has a couple of handy features such as 360 flips, continuous roll, built-in LED lights along with an HD camera capable of capturing decent quality aerial photos and videos. Akaso X5C can last up to 6 minutes in midair and is able to travel around 100 meters away from its transmitter which is outstanding, especially considering its relatively cheap price of just over 40 bucks. So, if you are looking for something bigger than a palm-sized drone, then Akaso X5C is definitely worth checking out!

Show me the best price for : Ashburn, United States

 

3. UFO 3000

ufo-3000If you are looking to cause a great light show during night flights and trick your neighbors into thinking there is a real UFO in their backyard, then you should seriously consider buying the UFO 3000. Why is that so? Well, here is some useful info that might encourage you to purchase this shiny little flyer…

While most drones today (if not all of them) are equipped with LED lights, the UFO 3000 takes it one step further. It has amazingly bright LEDs that go all the way around its propeller guards for maximum visibility. In other words, if you want to make sure you can clearly see your drone during even the darkest of nights, then go for the UFO 3000 and you won’t be disappointed.

Besides its extremely bright LEDs, this little fella is able to do 3D stunts, one key 360 flips, and 2 speed modes. When it comes to its speed, you will be surprised at how quick and agile this drone is. Another great virtue of the UFO 3000 is its flight time which goes around 7 minutes. Considering the fact that it comes with 2 batteries, that means you will get a total 14 minutes of flight time if you fully charge both of them. However, keep in mind that the range isn’t exactly its biggest virtue. With only 30 meters to go around with, it’s kind of disappointing you can’t share this fluorescent birdie with all your neighbors.

Show me the best price for : Ashburn, United States

 

2. RC Stunt Drone

Stunt-drone_webIf you are looking for a beautiful drone, then look no further because the RC Stunt Drone is the right one for you. We are talking about a beautiful black and orange drone with bright LED lights that will surely make you fall in love with it at the very first sight. But, it’s not what’s on the outside that matters…

It has 4 built-in prop guards that go all the way around its propellers and make up for its beautiful appearance. Other than it looks, this little fella is not going to disappoint you with its features because it has a whole bunch of them. Starting off with screw reinforced propellers and adjustable speed, all the way to one key 360 rolls and a generally durable frame that is able to endure a lot of crashes.

Specification-wise, it can last up to 6 minutes of flight time but can only reach cca 30 meters which is its only drawback. Come to think of it, the airtime isn’t exactly its biggest virtue either, but considering this drone is a bit bulkier than others on our list, 6 minutes is decent at best. So, with all that taken into account, I believe it is pretty clear that RC Stunt drone is one awesome little bugger well worth further inspecting.

Show me the best price for : Ashburn, United States

 

1. Holy Stone HS170

HOLY-STONE-HS170_webFinally, we have reached the ultimate drone that can be purchased for under $50! It is none other than the spectacular model made by Holy Stone. It goes by the name HS170 although many call it Predator due to its sleek design and sharp edges. But, in addition to its appearance, Holy Stone HS170 has a plethora of additional traits which are ranking it among the best-selling drones in this price range.

The first reason is definitely that mini controller which is included in the package. It might not look like much at first, but it is actually capable of delivering responsive controls. Other than that, this controller is also in charge of turning the headless mode on and off and keeping the drone at bay for up to 50 meters. Not bad for such a miniature little devil, right?

Talking about size, even though Holy Stone HS170 is a tiny drone, it still has enough propulsion for outdoor flight sessions. Don’t put it up against too much wind though as that will result in getting it off course. In terms of flight time, Holy Stone HS170 can stay in the air for roughly 6 to 8 minutes which is the average number at this price point. However, with its powerful motors, great design, and durable prop guards, it is bound to make a good impression on you.

Show me the best price for : Ashburn, United States

 

Conclusion

And there you have it guys! You had the chance to take a closer look at some of the best budget drones that are currently available on the market. As you could see for yourself, these cheap drones are not always as bad as people claim them to be. As is the case with pretty much all tech gadgetry, if you take enough time to do a proper research, you will find more than plenty of jewels among the dirt.

In the end, I would like to thank you for reading through this list and sincerely hope that it helped you with your decision. Until next time – HAPPY PILOTING!

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4 comments

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1

I find all this info helpful. I have never been on drone website so good. I am a drone geek and all your info is very helpful. Thanks!

3

I think you people have overlooked the Yi Zhan Tarantula X6 one of the best selling beginner drones ever made with a GIANT active community. It's speed, carrying capacity and durability can't be touch at it's price point. Don't take my word for it try going over to RCgroups and read the nearly 9000 active comments on this awesome drone. When your drone starts having other companies cloning your design you know it's a winner.

4

Hey Shawn. Thanks for the Info. I have 3 Sons and bought a couple different Drones for around 50.00. I forget the names, Safstar SYMA X5C RC Quadcopter and a Gemini something (forgot the name)... They are actually pretty cool and my wife got them on sale for like 30.00 on Black Friday. I will check the Yi Zhan Tarantula X6 out. Take Care and Happy Holidays !!