Beyond how long drones can remain in the sky (10 Long flight time drones) drones do have some other limitations too. Finding out which drone in which price tier has the least amount of limitations is the key to enjoying the hobby to its fullest. In this case, it’s about flight range.
Since drones are remote controlled they need a signal to respond to from the pilot’s point. Common question is : How far can a drone fly? Good long range drones for sale can still hold steady hundreds, if not thousands of feet, away. Lesser models will likely falter after about a few hundred feet or less.
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So in this article, we’re going to target long distance drones which can get to impressive distances within their price ranges – we’ll see what is the longest range drone in 3 different sections. We’ll mention other important specs too, but the main focus will ultimately cover how lengthy their sky trip scan be.
|5. MJX X708W||720p||10min||80m||See best offer|
|4. Holy Stone HS300||Full HD||10min||100m||See best offer|
|3. Holy Stone F181W||720p||10min||80m||See best offer|
|2. Altair AA108||720p||10min||100m||See best offer|
|1. UDI U818 Plus||720p||15min||150m||See best offer|
Table : 5 Long range drones for sale
5. MJX X708W
The first cheap long range drone that we have on our hands here is made by MJX, a company well known for pushing the boundaries of price/performance. Especially in lower to mid-tier drone market where their models are basically running the show with great specifications and solid overall performance. Nothing different can be said about their X708W model which incorporates gorgeous design with an easy to use control schematic. So, without any more introductory talk, let’s jump straight to action and see what can this little birdie bring to the table!
Camera and features
Yes, long range drones made by MJX have pretty high specifications, but that doesn’t mean their features are far off from the chart. It’s quite the contrary in terms of X708W. You see, this little camera birdie does not only feature headless mode but adjustable flying speed as well as one key return to home. All 3 of these features will come in handy, but the last one will surely be the one that interests you the most.
As far as the camera is concerned, MJX X708W sports a miniature built-in sensor that can shoot solid selfies and 2MPX aerial photos. However, when it comes to videos you will be surprised to see HD resolution (720p) and relatively smooth framerate. What more could you ask for from an entry level model?
Considering the price tag of this camera birdie, it is really surprising to see such a huge (and yet unbelievably responsive) operating range. As I mentioned at the start – MJX is known for pushing the spec-boundaries and they’ve done so with this one. MJX X708W is able to reach around 80 meters. It is not the longest range drone on the market, but it is definitely one of the best in this price range. Undoubtedly, such a high number is praiseworthy coming from a dirt cheap model. Last but not least, MJX X708W’s battery can endure around 10 minutes of flight time, even when recording. Great job MJX, once again…
4. Holy Stone HS300
Unfortunately, not every long distance drone can wake up real excitement to a person who controls it. Holy Stone HS300 however, can do a lot more. Besides having a high-quality frame, HS300 is equally good when it comes to performance in the sky. It is very well rounded, providing almost everything you can ask for. Whether you are already a professional or having your hands on such a machine for the first time, a good time is guaranteed. Although beauty is measured differently with each pair of eyes, this little fella will most definitely leave its owners more than happy with the way it is designed.
Camera and features
People from Holy Stone made sure this one has everything a potential buyer would want to have for something in this price range. It is equipped with 1080P HD camera, making it possible for you to take awesome pictures and record high-quality videos. One button takeoff and landing, 3D flip, headless mode, and smartly integrated altitude hold allow you as good experience as it gets.
It weighs just under 1.5 pounds and takes almost no space, making it a great choice for both long and short trips and adventures. HS300 also comes with 2 2000mAh batteries, each capable of holding the machine up to 10 minutes in the air. Control range is somewhere around 100 meters, and just in the case something goes bad, it comes with plenty of spare parts that will keep it up and running.
3. Holy Stone F181W
Unfortunately, not every drone can wake up real excitement to a person who controls it. Holy Stone F181W however, can do a lot more, which is something you will hardly get for its price. It is very well rounded, providing everything you need. Whether you are already a professional or having your hands on such a machine for the first time, a good time is guaranteed. Although beauty is measured differently with each pair of eyes, this little fella will most definitely leave its owners happy with the way it looks.
Camera and features
The first thing you will notice on this gorgeous birdie is its camera module. It’s located underneath its body and can produce pretty good image/video quality. It records only in 720p though, so don’t get your hopes too high for it. Other than that, we should also say a thing or two about Holy Stone F181W features. This little fella has access to the following: one key flip, one key return to home and adjustable speed controls to fit pilots of various experience.
As far as specifications are concerned, it is safe to say Holy Stone F181W does itself justice. It offers nothing spectacular, but considering the price point it is in, there is no doubt you will be fine with how it performs. Looking straight at the numbers, Holy Stone F181W can endure 7 to 10 minutes in the air and reach all the way to 80 meters from its controller. All in all, if you’re in the market for a solid camera birdie that will not take too much money out of your wallet, Holy Stone F181W is definitely one to check out!
2. Altair AA108
Usually, if you want something with solid quality, you will have to spend a fortune. Altair Aerial AA108 brings a different dimension to the market considering the fact it is sold for bargain. It is built with a lot of care and attention to details, which is a pretty good indicator what to expect from it. One of the best things about it is the great learning curve, as well as its ability to adjust and change different modes depending on the skill set of the pilot. AA108 is a great choice for anyone, mostly due to its versatility combined with a strong frame and a low price.
Camera and features
This long range quadcopter has implemented 120 degrees wide-angle 720P HD camera, making it a great choice for capturing breathtaking shots directly from your smartphone. It also features Custom Route Modes, Headless Mode, and Altitude Hold. Flying it indoors shouldn’t represent a problem even to a kid, with available 1 button takeoff and landing, and overall simplicity of a controller. Once you get your hands on it, you will have some troubles getting them off!
This cheap long range drone for sale is powered by 2 powerful batteries, each serving up to 10 minutes of flight time. When it comes to range, 100 meters reach should be more than enough to fulfill anyone’s needs. Low battery alarm will take care in keeping you without worries and your drone away from any unnecessary crash risk. It is far from being bulky, so you can take it wherever you want to.
1. UDI U818 Plus
Finally, we have reached the top spot among drones that can go below 300 meters. Sure enough, you’ve all realized that these birdies are all relatively cheap but still able to provide with satisfying flying experience. The same can be said about UDI U818 Plus. It ranges somewhere between entry-level and mid-tier market, making it an excellent choice for both beginners and more experienced users. What’s so special about it? Well, let’s find out, shall we?!
Camera and features
Thanks to altitude hold, UDI U818 Plus is highly stable long distance drone. And thanks to such stability, its HD camera (2MPX sensor) is capable of providing you with buttery smooth aerial footage. I kid you not – you will be impressed with what U818 Plus has to offer in terms of photography. Despite the lack of stabilization (hardware or software) it still achieves smooth footage which wouldn’t put to shame even much pricier models.
For those of you loving the number-game, I’m sure you will feel happy with UDI U818 Plus. WIth approximately 150 meters of operating range, this little bugger is quite the explorer among other similarly priced competition. Battery duration is not to be taken for granted either. This durable drone’s battery can produce 12 to 15-ish minutes of pure fun anytime you want. If that’s not worthy of the 1st spot, then I really don’t know what is…
One more thing – Obviously, UDI U818 Plus has a shorter range than Hol Stone HS100… but the price difference (which is huge) pulls the odds in favor of U818 Plus. Does it deserve the throne? Tell us what you think down in the comment section below!
|5. Upair One||2.7K - 4K||18min||800m||See best offer|
|4. MJX Bugs 3||GoPro||15min||300m||See best offer|
|3. Holy Stone HS100||720p||15min||500m||See best offer|
|2. Traxxas Aton||GoPro||15min||300m||See best offer|
|1. MJX Bugs 2W||Full HD||18min||1000m||See best offer|
Table : 5 Long range drones
5. Upair One
Upair One is an old champ, there is no doubt about that! This simplistic looking drone has “borrowed” its design from DJI Phantom series of drone. Well, borrowed or inspired by… or even copied… but who am I to judge. What’s most important is the fact that Upair One flies greatly and produces great entertainment (and pleasure) to its customers. How is that so? Well, take a look at the next few paragraphs and I’m sure you will get my point.
Camera and features
For a price difference of roughly $50, you are free to choose between 2 cameras for your Upair One. The cheaper version comes with a 2.7K camera while more expensive one sports a fully fledged 4K sensor. I for one strongly recommend matching that $50 extra and getting 4K camera – the quality is unbelievable. Especially considering Upair One sports a pretty decent gimbal too. As for other features, Upair One incorporates a whole bunch of them, including the following: failsafe auto return to home, headless mode, altitude hold, GPS and low battery voltage alarm.
The numbers are further improving the overall impression of Upair One. This bulky drone weighs in at around 1350 grams, 2-5 give or take. We are talking about a 350mm model (motor to motor distance measured diagonally) that can fly for around 18 minutes. How far can a drone fly ? Well, it is clocking in at roughly 800m. Remember, this birdie also sports FPV which can do admirable 500 meters without any breakouts. Pretty impressive coming from a drone that being wrongfully labeled as a mere copycat, don’t you think?
4. MJX Bugs 3
Here we have another MJX model. Their Bugs 3 is a veteran on the market and has been a nice surprise back in its prime days. Nowadays, the years have done their toll and it’s not that revolutionary anymore. Here’s what you can expect from this old champ…
Camera and features
MJX Bugs 3 Blue Edition is among the cheaper drones on this list. It is mostly so due to the fact it does not come with a camera. Despite that, it still features a gimbal that supports GoPro HERO models as well as off-brand action camera.
The actual process of mounting one is quite simple and you should not have any difficulties with doing so. Luckily, the rest of the drone is more than enough to compensate for the obvious lack of camera. For instance, it features brushless motors (MT1806 1800KV) which are known for their durability as well as altitude hold which will provide you with an easier learning curve.
It’s a surprising fact considering there are not that many drones in this price range that can boast with brushless motors. In addition to that, MJX Bugs 3 also comes with a powerful 2S 1800mAh battery. What’s awesome about it is that it effectively lasts up to 15 minutes in the air, making it quite the lengthy flier. The operating range is pretty solid as well. Its controller can be as far as 300 meters without any lag or losing connection.
Combine all of that with a generally awesome design and solid build quality, and you’ll realize that this is probably one of the best long-range drones out there when it comes to price/performance ratio.
3. Holy Stone HS100
At the third spot, we have an all new arrival coming from Holy Stone labs. In fact, this is the longest range drone Holy Stone has ever made. Their HS100 model seems like an outstanding competitor that could sweep the mid-tier market with its fine array of features and specifications. Even though the camera isn’t that good, you can always mount a better one. This birdie is more than capable of carrying it. So, with all that being said, let’s see what kind of performance can you expect from Holy Stone HS100!
Camera and features
Like I said above, Holy Stone managed to provide us with an exceptional array of features with this all-new HS100 model. Starting from GPS/GLONASS connection and all the way to autonomous flight modes such as follow me, this camera bird has them all. On top of all that, you also have access to altitude hold and return to home, both of which work via GPS/GLONASS reception. Last but not least, headless mode is present as well, making sure beginners are not left out with this one.
Camera, once again, isn’t exactly the strongest point of this one. We are talking about a mere HD-ready sensor that’s capable of providing decent-at-best aerial footage. However, you are free to make an upgrade which will, thanks to this birdie’s stability, greatly improve your footage.
Thanks to powerful hardware and durable body, Holy Stone HS100 can achieve quite the numbers. Alongside them, you will also feel just how easy it is to control this relatively cheap long range drone. It’s immensely stable (thanks to strong navigation and altitude hold) and doesn’t drift at all. For those of you more interested in actual numbers, I’m sure you won’t be left disappointed. Holy Stone HS100 can achieve approximately 10 to 15 minutes of flight time (depending on the payload) and go as far as 500 meters away from its stylish controller.
2. Traxxas Aton
Traxxas is well known for their RC products, especially cars. Last year they decided to enter drones market, and they did it. Successfully. Traxxas Aton Plus is more like professional grade drone for a price of toy grade drones.
Camera and features
Traxxas Aton Plus comes with 2-axis camera gimbal included and 5000mAh 3-Cell Traxxas iD LiPo Battery. There is one cool function named “Air Brake”, it allows you to stop and hover at the push of a button. That function works great, much better than I expected to be honest.
Lastly, you should know that Traxxas Aton sports 2 flying modes – sports and photography. The first will allow you massive acceleration, maneuverability, and top speed at the cost of stability. The latter, on the other hand, will provide you a slow but smooth flying experience best used for aerial photography.
Slowly but surely we are approaching the best drone that can go all the way up to 1000 meters away from its controller. But, before that, first, let’s take a closer look at this one’s specifications. Traxxas Aton, thanks to its powerful battery, can go on for around 15 minutes. It’s rather impressive actually, considering this is a bulky drone with extremely powerful motors. The range goes somewhere around the 300 mark, slightly more if you’re flying it in a clear and unobstructed area.
1. MJX Bugs 2W
I’ve already mentioned at least a couple of times that MJX does not joke around when it comes to creating affordable long distance drones with serious power. You already had the chance to see their X708W model at work. With a similar design to this one, that brushed mini quad delivered quite the performance. However, Bugs 2W steps things up a notch by providing with, and this is not even exaggerating, the best price/performance ratio in its price range. Hands down!
Camera and features
Let’s start off with the camera, shall we? Some might not like the fact that this built-in 1080p camera does not have any sort of stabilization going on. And it’s true – MJX Bugs 2W doesn’t have EIS or gimbal. Its camera relies solely on drone’s stabilization. In theory, it might sound stupid or paradoxal… but in reality, it works like a charm. That’s partially thanks to GPS/GLONASS connectivity and great satellite reception (I am getting around 16 satellites on average) and partially thanks to altitude hold. I kid you not – this thing is smooth and does not drift at all!
In terms of other features, MJX Bugs 2W also supports headless mode (which works perfectly each and every time) as well as return to home. There is also a dedicated failsafe protocol in case you lose signal or the battery gets extremely low. No need to worry about anything – MJX Bugs 2W will safely return to its takeoff location and live to tell the tale.
MJX Bugs 2W sure has a lot of things going for it as far as features are concerned. But we haven’t even reached the best part. Specifications-wise, you are looking at a drone costing slightly over $200 that can come pretty close to 1000 meters. That’s the answer for your question how far can a drone fly ! Crazy, huh? Well, not only that… This cheap long range drone for sale can fly as long as 15 to 18 minutes. Somewhere around 16 was the average airtime. If you want more flight time, I warmly suggest going for the more expensive version that packs 2 batteries Charge them both up and you’ll have roughly 30 minutes of pure entertainment.
|8. DJI Spark||Full HD||15min||2000m||See best offer|
|7. Yuneec Typhoon H||4K||25min||1500m||See best offer|
|6. DJI Phantom 3 Pro||4K||27min||7000m||See best offer|
|5. Autel X-Star Premium||4K||25min||2000m||See best offer|
|4. GoPro Karma||GoPro||20min||3000m||See best offer|
|3. DJI Phantom 4 Pro||4K||27min||7000m||See best offer|
|2. DJI Inspire 2||5.2K - 6K||27min||7000m||See best offer|
|1. DJI Mavic Pro||C4K||27min||7000m||See best offer|
Table : 8 Long range drones for sale
8. DJI Spark
For those of you who aren’t following up on the drone-related news, there is a high chance you’ve missed DJI’s newest model – the Spark. This is an insanely small quadcopter, but it’s not foldable like it’s older brother DJI Mavic Pro. Despite the lack of foldable prop arms, DJI Spark Combo is still a portable little beast, even more so than the previously mentioned Mavic. What exactly can this little beast do in terms of performance and aerial photography? Let’s find out!
Camera and features
As far as the camera is concerned, DJI Spark incorporates not only the imaging sensor but a proprietary 2-axis gimbal that is bound to significantly improve footage quality. Even though we are not talking about a 4K sensor here but only a 1080p one, the overall image quality does not fail to deliver. It’s clear, sharp and possesses the optimal field of view for panorama shots at high altitudes.
And lastly, features. DJI Spark has a plethora at its disposal, most of which have already been seen with Phantom 4 and Mavic Pro. However, there are 2 new ones called PalmLaunch and PalmControl, and they’re both worth looking into!
DJI Spark is quite the explorer too. Even though you won’t be able to reach the full 2000 meters (when paired with its dedicated controller) which is the official number, you’re still looking at roughly 500m to 1000m, depending on the possible interference.
Moving on, the included battery is able to power this beauty up for roughly 15 minutes, give or take. Keep in mind this number will be slightly lower if you’re recording for the full flight duration, as is usually the case with most drones with cameras.
7. Yuneec Typhoon H
As we approach the priciest drones we scavenged up, it’s good to note we expect only professionals or hobbyist veterans around these parts. Only because drones like the Yuneec Typhoon H are pretty expensive and we highly suggest being very careful when handling it. This also means what we list will have some expected veterancy, so use with care.
Camera and features
This camera birdie rocks a state of the art camera + 3-axis gimbal as its photography system of choice. With support for 4K videos at smooth 30fps, there is nothing much to add about this little bugger… except perhaps the fact that it’s capable of recording in slow motion, but at much lower resolutions.
We should also mention it’s obstacle avoidance system that works very well. Then there is auto follow me mode packed up with some of the best cameras available on the market. You can’t go wrong with his drone, especially considering value for money you will be getting with Yuneec Typhoon H!
Yuneec claims their Typhoon H can fly a full mile (1.6km) before losing signal and coming back to you automatically using GPS. Meaning, much like flying a small craft, you may actually need to be aware of other flying things in your area. Now that we’re done lecturing, the Typhoon H also has a digital flight path you can create to mingle as one of the drones with the best range. And finally, in terms of battery duration, Yuneec Typhoon H fares quite well too. You can expect 25 minutes of airtime on average which is just enough for a drone of this caliber.
6. DJI Phantom 3 Pro
DJI and its respective fleet often find their units on our list for having a pretty lengthy variety of models to choose from. Right now, we are going to take a closer look at their Phantom 3. More precisely, the Professional version which holds together several excellent upgrades over the standard one. So, let’s take a quick stroll through its main aspects to see what’s it all about!
Camera and features
A huge upgrade from DJI P3 Standard version is definitely the camera. DJI P3 Pro offers a 4K-ready camera mounted on a 3-axis stabilizing gimbal. The footage is absolutely brilliant and still considered as top notch even with many newer drones occupying the market. Features are plentiful too – DJI Phantom 3 Pro has access to the likes of Follow Me, Waypoints, Return to Home and many more.
Previously, the DJI Phantom 3 Standard was also on our list of drones with the longest battery life, because it sported a whopping 20 minutes. Let’s add to that, as the Phantom 3 has been recorded to hit distances of about 500 meters, or 1500 feet. But, DJI Phantom 3 Pro takes things up a notch and slightly increases the battery duration up to 23 minutes. The biggest change is definitely the operating range. Believe it or not, DJI Phantom 3 Pro can reach 5 kilometers away from its controller.
To summarize – The “Pro” model in DJI Phantom 3 lineup is still a viable choice for everyone wanting a decently priced long-range drone that can satisfy all of their aerial photography needs. With a sleek design, outstanding build quality and plenty of spare parts available, DJI Phantom 3 Standard seems like a proper deal any day of the week.
5. Autel Robotics X-Star Premium
If you’re looking for a slightly cheaper alternative to DJI Phantom 4, then Autel Robotics X-Star Premium could be your go-to option. We are talking about an extremely underrated model with serious firepower underneath the hood. Plus, it is nicely poised with awesome safety features including magnetic interference protection which is bound to make a difference. Here’s what else is so awesome about X-Star Premium, which is one of the drones with the longest range.
Camera and features
When it comes to the features, it needs to be said that X-Star Premium features both GPS and GLONASS. Additionally, it also supports several autonomous flight modes including orbit, waypoints and follow me. Of course, return to home is supported as well, providing you with a safe environment for proper aerial photography.
Starting off with the operating and FPV range, X-Star Premium stands much better than its non-premium counterpart. More precisely, operating range of this birdie closes in at roughly 2000 meters. It’s second only to DJI’s flagship bearing their OcuSync technology. Airtime, on the other hand, is looking sharp at around 25 minutes.
Last but not least, I have to say a word or two about the design. Autel Robotics X-Star Premium is a bright orange quadcopter with powerful LEDs for orientation purposes. While some might find it too tacky, I am absolutely loving it. All things considered, I believe you now realize why Autel Robotics X-Star Premium is ranked so high on this list. Once again, we are talking about a highly underrated drone here… so make sure it doesn’t go under your radar too!
4. GoPro Karma
I’m sure most of you know that GoPro decided to launch their own long range drone in order to broaden their product line for sports/recreation enthusiasts who love to record their endeavors. GoPro Karma targets exactly them, and so far, it is doing quite good out there on the market. It’s a premium drone with a premium price tag though… but it can’t really be compared to the Mavic Pro… And here’s why:
Camera and features
First off, let’s start with the biggest advantage Karma has over DJI Mavic Pro. Of course, that’s the camera. With official support for all 3 newest GoPro Hero models, there are very few drones that can compete with GoPro Karma, at least when it comes to out-of-box photography experience. It also grants its buyers Karma Grip which transforms this drone package into a body-mounted or handheld one.
Pretty neat, huh? But I’m afraid that’s about it as far as advantages go. Everything else goes (more or less) in favor of DJI’s masterpiece. Take features for example – even though GoPro Karma possesses GPS and has several autonomous flight modes, DJI Mavic Pro offers more versatility and adjustability. And that’s only the beginning…
But it’s not really fair comparing these 2 after all. DJI Mavic Pro only offers aerial photography while GoPro Karma dashes out the entire package. So, it’s actually justifiable for Karma to sport slightly lower specifications. By slightly lower, this is what I mean – GoPro Karma can travel around 3 kilometers away from its controller (which is absolutely gorgeous). Compare that to 7 kilometers of DJI Mavic Pro and you’ll know what I’m talking about.
Last but not least, battery duration goes somewhere along the 20-minute mark which is a bit below the standard. Once again though – all other drones on the market offer only aerial photography solutions. GoPro Karma, on the other hand, offers aerial, body-mounted and handheld. If that’s what you’re looking for, then it’s pretty clear which drone is made for you!
3. DJI Phantom 4 Pro
DJI has continued with their recent success, releasing 3 high-end models that have definitely created quite the stir on the market. Phantom 4 Pro is one of the 3 (second two can be seen down below) and looks to be a great upgrade nevertheless. DJI Phantom 4 Pro comes with an abundance of sensors, including the all-new obstacle avoidance (this is the first DJI’s drone with such technology implemented) system.
Camera and features
As far as imaging solution is concerned, DJI Phantom 4 Pro comes with a marvelous 20MPX camera with 1-inch sensor and mechanical shutter. Needless to say, the image quality is smooth and clear as you all expect. Now let’s go back to the above-mentioned obstacle avoidance system. It allows the drone to fly seamlessly wherever you want it to, without any issues with collisions or crashing since its advanced sensor mechanisms will detect and avoid anything dangerous that might come in its way. The design has stayed roughly the same, with exceptional build quality just like we are already used to seeing from DJI’s drones.
Specifications have been slightly booster as well, giving an overall much better performance. If you ask me how far can a drone fly, answer is : 7 kilometers of operating range (same technology was implemented in all 3 of their new models) and roughly 27 minutes of flight time make this a proper premium model. There isn’t that much more to be said about DJI Phantom 4 Pro that you already don’t know about. Perhaps the only thing worth mentioning is its maximum speed of approximately 44mph (roughly 72 km/h) which is incredibly fast for a casual/aerial photography drone.
With that being said, let’s move straight to the second one of DJI’s awesome new drones that looks to set its throne as the new best drone for aerial photography!
2. DJI Inspire 2
DJI Inspire 2 is a well-anticipated long distance drone that definitely looks to exceed everyone’s expectations. With even better specifications and more hi-tech features than its predecessor, Inspire 2 looks to be set for the stars. All things considered, Inspire 2 seems like it’s going to make a heck of a name for itself out there! Still, keep in mind that this is not a beginner’s drone which its price tag strongly suggests as well…
Camera and Features
You see, everything design-wise has remained the same. There’s still the breathtaking rotor-raising feature that clears the view for the 4K camera that’s better than ever. Of course, it is mounted on the Zenmuse X5S gimbal stabilization which is, I’ll dare to say, currently the best one on the market. In addition to that, it is important to mention that it also features obstacle avoidance in addition to dual GPS+GLONASS navigation systems.
Moreover, the specifications of this longest range drone are absolutely breathtaking – close to half an hour of battery life and 7 kilometers of operating range make this drone a great choice for people who don’t mind spending a ton of money for it. With that in mind, Inspire 2 is still going to be mainly purchased by professional photographers since it is, at least at the moment, the best mainstream aerial photography platform on the market. The stabilization this beast features is just unearthly and is able to deliver silk smooth footage no matter the fight conditions.
1. DJI Mavic Pro
There is a huge swarm of selfie drones at the moment. I do not know if you guys have realized this before, but it’s damn true. The selfie drone market is rapidly growing in popularity and it is no wonder that DJI, the world’s most popular drone manufacturer, decided to step in and take their share of the cake… and, oh boy, did they do it in style!
Camera and features
Moreover, it comes with an excellent 4K camera that has its own stabilization system… and quite frankly, it does wonders! The design is as sleek as It can be, but then again, that’s no surprise since it’s a DJI product. Last but not least, I’d like to mention that it is packed with smart features that we’ve had the chance to see with Phantom 4 Pro and Inspire 2 as well, ActiveTrack and TapFly.
In addition to them, you will find plenty more of them, most of which will definitely prove to be of massive help. Whether it is for stability, whether it’s for taking pictures or even sheer control over the drone – DJI’s wide array of features will have you covered. With DJI Mavic Pro they are aggressively attacking the high-end selfie drone market. You see, this miniature foldable drone has much higher specifications than all other competitors in the selfie category.
With 7 kilometers of operating range and roughly 25 minutes of flight time, there’s no point in any comparisons of this longest range drone to its main competitors except DJI Phantom 4 Pro & DJI Inspire 2.
In the end, I believe there is nothing left to be said about Mavic Pro. It definitely is a mile ahead of all competition, but those premium specifications sure do have a premium price tag to its name. If something can disrupt Mavic Pro’s goals, then it’s definitely the huge price gap in the niche… But that’s something we’ll have to wait and see…
Typical usage scenarios for long range drones
Drones with extremely long ranges are viable for a wide array of usages. These range from filmmaking, recreational exploration and a plethora of commercial uses as well. The latter provides the most value for people willing to invest in high end drones capable of reaching more than 5 kilometers away from their controller.
They are fast, agile, and can fly high above the ground making it almost impossible for people to spot them. Additionally, there are also specialized drones that are primarily targeted at certain industries (f.e. agricultural drones, delivery drones, surveillance drones), making them even better for that particular branch of industry. So, with all that in mind, let’s take a peek at the most typical usages for such drones! Let’s see what are they most useful for!
With both UPS and Amazon racing to fully develop their drone delivery systems, the future in which drones will act as primary means of delivering goods seems certain! Come to think of it, this is not surprising at all.
Drones are already fully autonomous and will a little software trickery they can be made into fully fledged delivery fleet. Even though drone delivery is not yet a real thing anywhere in the world, after a couple of successful tests (f.e. Amazon test in the UK and UPS test in Florida) it seems as though it is only a matter of time before they start delivering our toys to us… quicker than ever.
Surveillance is a big part of our society and it is safe to say that modern day drones pushed it one step further. Long range drones are often used for surveillance and it’s becoming more and more clear that they excel at it. Whether they are guarding a particular area of interest from intruders, private properties, or The White House; monitoring protests, groups and certain activities, the key of drone surveillance is in their stealthy approach.
Since today’s flagship long range drones are fast and can fly high above people, they are pretty difficult to notice, allowing people to think they are not being monitored. Equipped with night vision and infrared cameras, they are the ideal surveillance tools that can effectively monitor huge areas, making sure there is no breach of security while they’re in charge.
I am sure most of you know about the highly specialized drones that are used for agricultural purposes from fertilizing to regularly inspecting crops. With a wide array of visual feedback such as infrared data, farmers can learn more about their crops and investigate potential weak sports and distressed plants.
Undoubtedly, this is extremely useful for everyone making a living with agriculture and is a magnificent modern-day tool that more and more farmers are investing in. Other than that, farmers can also use schedule automatic crop inspections and fertilizing/watering which will result in maximized yields and better, healthier crops.
With the introduction of long range drones for sale, mapping has experiences a proper rebirth. Nowadays, there are whole fleets of drones being used for mapping particular areas. Modern day drones are able to effectively map entire forests, rivers, hills and mountain chains, making them extremely useful for that matter.
Mapping is most often used for understanding certain hard-to-reach areas which tend to rapidly change, such as fast-moving rivers, forests and so on. In addition to that, mapping is also used in highly urban areas where other means of mapping (f.e. via helicopters) is not that viable due to the huge size of the vehicle.
FAA – How far am I allowed to fly a drone?
FAA has a whole set of new drone regulations that are already being enforced. For casual users, the law states that the maximum height you can fly at is 400 feet. Fly above that and you might get arrested and pay up to $250,000 fine and perhaps even spend up to 3 years in prison (this sounds rather harsh to be honest). Another reason that could potentially get you in jail (or a hefty fine) is flying a drone beyond your visible line of sight (BVLOS). With that being said, you must keep the drones in your sight at all times. Even if you are heavily relying on your drone’s FPV capabilities, it still must be in your LOS otherwise you’d be breaking the federal laws.
Commercial users are now bounded by a different set of regulations. First off, they will have to pass the 107-knowledge test which incorporates 60 questions and requires at least 42 correct answers. After passing the test and getting their diploma, commercial users are finally allowed to fly their drones for, you’ve guessed it – commercial purposes. But, that still does not mean they can legally fly above 400 feet or beyond their visible line of sight. For that, commercial users will need to get special permits directly from the FAA.
Luckily, the FAA has already granted a couple hundred exemptions to commercial uses who need to fly their drones BVLOS. Most of these commercial users work for agricultural companies allowing them to inspect their fields without breaking the law. There are also surveillance companies that only fly BVLOS during night to improve their security.
Other things to consider when buying a long-range drone?
In addition to long range, there are several other key aspects of a drone that you need to look into before making your purchase:
If you are buying a surveillance or mapping drone, you need to make sure it is equipped with a state of the art camera. If not, you will be left out with a mediocre (at best) image quality which will, in the end, not be that impressing. So, if you are already willing to spend more than a thousand bucks for a drone, make sure it comes with a proper camera (at least a 4K one with 3-axis gimbal stabilization system). Depending on what you’re buying the drone for, you might even upgrade it to a night vision/infrared camera with optical zoom (and mind you, this heavily depends on why exactly are you purchasing the drone for) which will further improve the data you’ll receive.
Battery is a very important aspect which could make or break certain drone deals. That’s why you should always aim for drones with easily replaceable batteries with quick charge technology (so you can charge one while the drone is flying on the second one) that can endure at least 20 minutes of active flight. With that being said, keep in mind that 20-25 minutes is considered a bare minimum and you should never compromise with anything below that.
Personal radio-controlled drones are becoming exceedingly common in today’s market. For hobbyists and newcomers alike, drones offer a unique new way to approach RC flight and allow users to capture sights that weren’t possible on their own. So, it’s no wonder every other drone comes with a payload capacity or ability to attach a GoPro camera to its frame (10 drones with GoPro camera). Video and photographs from previously impossible angles are created, meaning there’s more incentive for enthusiasts beyond piloting a small machine
6. Yuneec Q500+ Typhoon
The Yuneec Q500+ Typhoon is on this list again for all around impressiveness. In our other articles, we were already liking its considerable half-hour sky life. The facts don’t change though, and the Typhoon has an RC range of about 8000 feet, according to reports.
At $700 USD that might be one of the better deals you can get. In this tier, it also makes it one of the best long range camera drones you can find. Granted, the area you’re in might affect this lengthy range, but overall it can get places for the photo/drone enthusiast.
In the end, I believe you just can’t go wrong with Q500 if you’re looking for long distance drone that’s capable to record high quality video and capture amazing photos. With excellent design, solid specifications and an outright fair price, only sky is the limit for Yuneec Q500+ Typhoon.
7. Xiro Xplorer V
If the name didn’t already imply it, the designers really want you to understand the “X” is a major feature here. Even the drone has an x like shape. Is that some sort of an X conspiracy? I don’t know…
More to the point, as a long range drone with camera, and it’s heavy $560 USD price tag, one expects some performance. Well, it does deliver at least in principle, with a bulky sky life of 20 minutes.
So, if you’re asking yourself how far can a drone fly. Emphasizing flight range, our x-loving drone gets around on 1800 feet ranges, or 600 meters. From there, you can capture all its sported 1080p video you want.
Additionally, Xiro Xplorer V is a FPV drone by all means. Video transmission works very well, better than I expected to be honest. There’s updated version of this drone available now (Xiro Xplorer 2) which looks very futuristic. That also means this version is now on sale, so get your piece right now!
12. DJI Phantom 2
As we jump into the next price tier of RC drones, we’re greeted by the DJI Phantom 2, a quick and mobile variant of the Phantom series. While reports remark that it can be fragile, meaning it’s more aimed at veteran pilots, it boasts some great airtime stability.
Additionally, the Phantom 2 reaches distances between 300-500 meters, but there are some owners who claim they have reached 1km+ without any antenna customization. So I believe it can easily go over 500 meters on open field.
Since it supports GoPro and other action camera, it can easily be used for exploring unexplored areas or just casual photographing of cool scenes. Flight time is somewhere around 15-17 minutes which is more than enough in most of cases, for most of flyers. There is always an option to buy extra batteries if you need longer flights.
With all of the above taken into consideration, it is quite clear (even to the biggest beginners reading this) that DJI Phantom 2 still hasn’t lost its competitive spirit. So, it’s only appropriate to recommend it as a great value for money option… One of the best ones out there, for that matter!
5. DJI Inspire 1
Surprise! DJI has multiple listings on our choices for long control range drones again. But, credit given where it’s due, their models are tried, tested, and well received.
With all that being said, it is not really that surprising to see the original Inspire on this list. The pricing is still a big issue for casual users though, so we’ll have to see how will it rank up with cheaper options…
At about $2550, the Inspire 1 will then crown our list for being the most relatively expensive model equivalent to the distances it can reach. We should add, aside from its manufacturing, the extra pricing comes from included camera and hardware.
So how far can you capture its boasted 4K video? No more than 1500 feet, actually, so don’t think you’ll be recording clouds. Radio transmission range is better though, hitting distances close to 2km (or 1.2 miles). While you might not get full range for video, you can go a long way, and it’s worth noting the drone has a pretty good payload haul.
4. DJI Phantom 4
Newest model in one of the most recognizable series of drones ever, DJI Phantom 4. Compared to DJI Phantom 3, it comes with everything slightly upgraded.
Now we have better (4k) camera, obstacle avoidance system (Phantom 3 didn’t have this), improved battery, motors, controller etc. Pretty much everything is slightly improved.
Since this article is all about control range, I’m more than happy to inform you that DJI Phantom 4 has an operating range of 6 kilometers on open field. With new battery that will provide you with 25 minutes of flight time, this sounds pretty awesome! Combined with FPV Goggles, P4 will provide you with great flying experience!
I should also mention that price of Phantom 4 has significantly dropped since DJI revealed new model : Phantom 4 PRO. If you’re interested in buying this drone, now you can get it at pretty good price! It’s definitely worth every penny, that’s for sure!
10. Hubsan H501S
Hubsan H501S – this is where real game begins. For such a low price you get a drone that has : Altitude hold, Follow me mode, Headless mode, GPS (back to home), 6-axis flight control. As some of you probably realize, this sort of features can be found on more expensive drone that go well above $200…
Come to think of it, if someone told me a year ago that I’ll be able to get all these functions for $200 I’d told him he must be joking. Oh, I almost forgot. If that’s not enough, it comes with 1080p FPV camera as well! It’s featured on our list of 10 Best Camera Drones. There’s no doubt that will suit all your drone racing cravings that you have going on.
Since this article is all about range, I should tell you that Hubsan H501S has a flight range of 300 meters. To be honest, there’s no chance you can see this drone on that distance, but I’m pretty sure there will be people who’ll put it on its limits. If you’re one of these, please record it and upload to Youtube! 🙂
14. Holy Stone HS170 Predator Mini
Of the long distance drones for sale, Holy Stone’s mobile little drone starts off our list as a great starter machine. It’s called the mini, because surprise, it’s a lot smaller than a standard drones usual specifications. Still, that doesn’t mean it’s awful. It’s quite the contrary when we come to think of it…
That being said, the Predator Mini boasts wind resistant flight reaching distances of roughly 30-50 meters (almost 150 feet). That’s a darn good distance for such a small unit, meaning it works for both entertainment and to just practice flying RC drones. It’s currently priced at $40 USD, a cheap investment for those curious about the hobby. It’s also included on DronesFella’s list of long range UAVs.
With all that in mind, it’s also a must to mention that Holy Stone Predator Mini is a great beginner drone that won’t break easily. Even in case you somehow manage to break it, don’t cry too much because it wasn’t very expensive and next time but two instead of only one. 🙂
13. MJX X10C FPV
A stylized, mainly white drone quadcopter, the X10C comes next in the tier by rumbling through the skies with a flight distance maximum of about 100 meters, or 300 feet. With a fair price and decent range, it becomes a no-brainer for everyone trying to get into drone hobby.
It’s also been marked down from its original price tag (yes, that means it’s even cheaper now), meaning it’s a good choice for a long range drone for sale. According to the vendor, it isn’t too difficult to fly either and has a camera for capturing 720p resolution video. As a nice little bonus, it’s also compatible with MJX’s virtual headset, granted how useful that is we couldn’t say (it’s also not included).
If you have plans to scour the air for a fair hundred feet, this is a great start. This virtual reality headset probably is comparable to ones used in drone racing leagues, but hey – you get what you pay for. Good pick to get you into the world of drones and FPV flying. Good control range is always a bonus when we’re talking about drones. There are many reasons why this is one of the most popular drones for kids.
This great looking drone deserved it’s place on this list. It’s not only one of the drones with best flight range in this price range but it’s also one of the best drones for aerial photography and videography in this price range because of it’s stability, reliability and SAFE technology Blade putted into it. Using solely a remote control for operation, the Chroma can be flown up to 400 meters (1,312 feet) away from you. Compared to the average controllable range of 100 meters, you can control the Chroma from 300 meters (984 feet) further away. That’s not where the party ends. There are several versions of Chroma, some of them supports GoPro Hero 3 and 4 action cameras, while one version(on the picture) comes with it’s own camera. Both are great quality but buying one that works with GoPro can save you some money in case you already have GoPro camera.
Ehang GHOST 2.0
GHOSTDRONE is one of the many drone variants which fancies control and integration with iPhones and respective apps. When it comes to that there’s always mixed reactions mingled with uncertain functionality, but this model does an okay job working with wi-fi networks. The bigger story here is its distance life, coming to half-a-mile, according to the maker, meaning it’s one of the better drones with long range. It also boasts it’s the easiest drone model to fly. With its various modes, range, and weather stability functions, this might be true. Sitting on the edge of an $800 USD pricetag, it’s up to the user to figure out if they want it that much. This is definitely one of the best long range drones.