Drones, also known as UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles), are aerial vehicles without pilots that are controlled remotely via a person or computer control center on the ground. Drones not only come in a variety of sizes and shapes, and the functionality varies greatly, as well. These remote vehicles are probably the most popular and highly developed equipment in the field of both aeronautics and robotics.
Nowadays, drones are everywhere! Smile! There might be one buzzing overhead right now.
Until very recently, drones were only used for government business or weather analysis. Fortunately for you, this has changed! Nowadays drones are used by companies and civilians to perform tasks that manned helicopters cannot perform or are considered too costly or potentially risky.
A personal-use drone comes fixed with cameras that enables you to take photos or video from the sky. This unique photographic feature has been one of the driving forces that has enabled creative entrepreneurs to make money using personal drones. Many people are beginning to increase their personal incomes substantially by selling their drone photography for commercial purposes. “In-flight” videos taken from a bird’s-eye view are becoming increasingly popular. There are hundreds of uses for having good, clear aerial views: building damage, property analysis, event coverage, traffic problems… the list could go on and on. Imagine how thrilled a bride would be to have her stunning wedding covered entirely from the sky. Isn’t that incredible?
The fields of aerial photography and aerial filmmaking are growing at a very rapid pace thanks to the affordability and flexibility of the modern day drones. However, as mentioned above, the features of the drones sold today vary greatly from model to model. While we are currently waiting to see how DJI’s latest drone camera, the DJI Mavic Pro, and GoPro’s first remote aerial video platform, the GoPro Karma, perform, below you will find seven of the best camera drones, their specifications, unique features, accessories and, most importantly, the video camera capabilities that you can use to create top-notch videos and start making money with your drone right now!
Here are our Top Picks for the Best Drones to Use in Your Aerial Video Business Right Now
DJI has always been a front-runner in the market of high-quality drones. This hexacopter model is specifically designed for photography and filming purposes. The arms and the landing gear of the s900 are made with carbon fiber, which makes it a very lightweight and extremely portable drone. As the name implies, its “spreading wings” feature fold out and can be ready to fly in a matter of minutes. The wing system also affords the drone much more stability while it is in the air, therefore allowing the videographer to capture solid, quality shots. DJI has added advanced equipment to the s900, including its motors, frame, and controllers to give you all that you need to make an outstanding video. The DJI s900 is lightweight and portable, yet strong and stable. This drone is an excellent choice for the demanding filmmaker.
- The s900 hexacopter uses carbon fiber for the arms and landing gear, greatly reducing its weight while increasing its stability, strength and flying time.
- Its arms are designed to fold inward in an effort to save space. DJI designed this drone to be taken anywhere you want to go. The arms spread out and can be ready to make excellent videos in just a few short minutes.
- The s900 offers retractable landing gear and a special low gimbal mounting bracket, which gives you an extremely wide range of possible shooting angles and camera motions.
- The arms are also designed with a 3-degree inclination and an 8-degree inversion, allowing the drone to remain stable while pitching and rolling, yet more flexible while rotating.
- The s900 has a 2.4G HD video downlink – a downright incredible speed for video streaming. It supports Zenmuse z15, GHZ3, GH4 as well as BMPCC gimbals, all of which have a high stability factor, which allows you to take great footage in all different types of conditions.
- This model uses dampeners specifically designed to provide vibration-reduction capabilities. These dampeners afford you a much smoother and steady video experience.
- The new power distribution mechanism improves safety and reliability. Gold-plated metal bearings and a unique screw design secure the power cords, ensuring cables will not come loose during flight.
- DJI has added a removable upper center board, allowing easy access to install your flight controller and IMU. It also provides much easier access to add accessories and mount the flight controller.
Find deals on the DJI Spreading Wings s900 from Amazon here!
The DJI Inspire quadcopter comes in two series: the DJI Inspire 1 v2.0 and Inspire 1 Pro. These incredible models are the smallest, fastest and the most professional aerial filming drone in the world. The biggest difference between the v2.0 and the Pro version comes down to the cameras. The v2.0 comes with a Zenmuse X3, while the Pro comes with a Zenmuse X5. The X3 uses an F/2,8 iris, 20 mm lens, and yields up to 4K resolution. The X5 uses an adjustable (F/1.7-F/16) iris, 30 mm lens, and yields 4K UHD resolution. The X5 allows the videographer greater flexibility to get “the perfect shot.” These particular drones have been used in some of Hollywood’s major motion pictures. The Inspire is made of carbon fiber arms that make the drone quite light while maintaining its strength. It is designed with an aircraft-like body, which makes it look very professional.
- DJI’s Inspire comes fixed with the smallest camera ever made. This detachable Micro 4/3 is a camera that is specifically made for aerial imaging. It provides mega clear 4K video of up to thirty frames in a second (Pro version: 4K UHD). This is a key feature to look for when hoping to make money using drone photography. The camera captures an extraordinary 16 megapixel photo, which is the perfect size to bring out quality video and images for your business.
- This quadcopter offers great stabilization of the camera through its 3-axis gimbals that are set to stabilize the camera during every aspect of the flight.
- This drone has strong carbon fiber arms that can be moved (with the simple flip of a switch) out of the camera’s view, allowing a perfect 360 degrees view of the camera.
- In addition to a real-time transmission of the display from Inspire drone to your phone or tablet, you also have full control of your camera’s settings right from your palm.
Find deals on the DJI Inspire 1 v2.0 from Amazon here!
The Solo quadcopter, by 3D Robotics, has been described as a “scary-smart” drone. If you would like to stay ahead of the competition in the photography industry, then this drone is yours. It is very easy to fly compared to others; it even offers a simulator app so you can learn to fly a drone without the risk of losing it into the ocean or canyon. It has computer aided smart shots, a great selfie-feature function and can follow a line or orbit an object designated on your smart phone. The Solo is driven by two 1GHZ computers and is, by far, the smartest of all drones on the market today. You can enjoy wireless video streaming straight to your phone or tablet. The video is of high quality and the drone has the ability to stream HD video wirelessly from GoPro to iOS and Android gadgets up to ½ mile away.
- The Solo comes with an intuitive video-game style joystick that makes maneuvering quick & easy.
This is the only drone that comes with in-flight GoPro access that enables you to adjust camera settings from the ground. Additionally, you can start or stop your recording from the ground.
- Use its “Follow Me” mode to track and film any subject effortlessly. Additionally, this mode will bring your drone right back to you after your flight is complete. How nice is that?
- 3DR offers free software and feature updates, which allows you to upgrade your drone as technology advances.
- Pushbutton that enables instant fly and within a second, your drone will be in the air with a press of the pushbutton.
The Solo allows effortless professional-quality wrap around shots. By focusing the camera on a specific object, you can direct the drone to orbit that object while filming.
Find deals on the 3DR Solo from Amazon here!
This drone represents a whole new range of camera drones. Considered as the sexiest drone ever, the Phantom 4 quadcopter is equipped with great features that will truly make your videos and photography completely unique. Phantom 4 has a greatly reduced weight and revolutionized skeleton. The use of magnesium skeleton makes it a lighter weight drone. The center of gravity is now closer to the core of the quadcopter, making it more stable in flight. Additionally, DJI has put much effort into making sure that Phantom 4 fly for about 28 minutes.
- The Phantom 4 boasts a VPS (Virtual Positioning System) that gives the drone precise hovering and instant breaking capabilities, making it easier and safer to fly. Additionally, if disturbed during a hover, the VPS will track the Phantom 4’s movement and return it back to its original hovering point.
- DJI offers ActiveTrack, which makes tracking a moving subject effortless.
- Multiple flight modes afford much greater agility and accuracy. A few to note include: Atti Mode allows the drone to hold its position in flight for smooth filming. Position Mode uses satellite to keep the drone positioned on the right track. Sports mode increases the drone speed by 25%, reaching speeds of 72 kph, and adds extra strength and stability.
- FPV streaming of 20p HD video up to 5km away by use of low latency transmission, which is resistant to interference for added efficiency during filming.
- Phantom 4 has a high-quality 12.4M camera with 1/2.3” pixels. This powerful camera, with added stability controls, makes it possible to capture still photograph of up to size of 4000 x 3000.
- The Phantom 4 features DJI director software that you can use to edit your videos as they come in.
- Another great and unique feature of Phantom 4 is the auto take off and auto home return using the GPS system. This makes controlling the drone easy and without worry as the drone will just return to its initial position (home).
- The drone has an obstacle-avoidance sensor, as well as built-in IMU’s and a dual compass for increased reliability.
Find deals on the DJI Phantom 4 from Amazon here!
Well, yet another quality quadcopter from DJI! For those who would like to take high quality and good resolution video, the Phantom 3 Professional is great! It offers a 4K UHD Video camera that takes up to 30 frames per second and captures 12 megapixel photos for crisp and clear photography. It also has a stabilized 3-axis gimbal for a smooth footage. Additionally, the drone is incorporated with Lightbridge streaming that makes the viewing of 720p video possible over a distance of 15 miles. The drone is fixed with DJI Pilot app for both android and iOS gadgets, so the video will be streamed directly to your phone. You can edit and share the videos as you receive them right on your phone. It even has a vision positioning system that enables you to fly the drone in an enclosed area where GPS system may be absent.
- The Phantom 3 Professional offers an incredible 4K UHD video recording – an excellent choice for a videography business.
- Its 3-axis gimbals give the drone extra stability, regardless of how it is flown. This makes complex shots and long-exposure photos seem like child’s play.
- DJI’s Vision Positioning System is a unique feature that makes flying the drone indoors, or in the absence of a GPS system, possible. This is a great feature for the videographers who are interested in documenting events.
- The rechargeable remote controller and flight battery make it possible for you to start making money with drone immediately. Just unpack it from the box and GO!
- An interesting note about the Phantom 3 Professional: It is restricted to fly within 15 miles radius of the state house in Washington DC.
Find deals on the DJI Phantom 3 Professional from Amazon here!
Ehang Company has finally unveiled a brand new model of quadcopter, the GHOSTDRONE 2.0 Aerial drone. This is part a whole new generation of drones whose focus is to combine professional photography with intuitive, easy to use technology. The GHOSTDRONE 2.0 is easy to use, so every the beginner can comfortably use this drone for filming and taking photos. It comes with a 4K camera that is suitable for high-quality professional footage and crystal clear still photos. One of the outstanding components of this drone is the use of virtual reality goggles. They enable you to have a first-person view (FPV) of what the drone is seeing. You can also control the angle of its camera by simply tilting your head while wearing the reality goggles. Additionally, Ehang’s drone has a tilt control feature, making its ease of use far exceed other drones. You can simply control your drone by tilting your phone. Now that is easy!
- Ehang’s signature “Tilt Control” offers a whole new experience even for beginners. This feature allows the pilot to steer the drone simply by tilting his phone in the direction in which he wishes to fly.
- The GHOSTDRONE 2.0 comes with integrated virtual reality goggles, which videographers can use to see the shot exactly from the drone’s perspective – no more guessing and hoping for the best shot.
- Its incredible stabilized 4K camera, capturing 12 megapixel photos, affords high-quality professional aerial photography and videography without shaking or blurriness.
- Using Ehang’s mobile app for both android and iOS platforms you will have total control of your drone.
Find deals on the Ehang GHOSTDRONE 2.0 Aerial from Amazon here!
For a fully integrated land/aerial imaging system, Yuneec’s Typhoon Q500+ Quadcopter Drone may just be your answer. It comes with a ground station featuring an ST-10+ 5.5” Android touch screen. This 1080p high definition camera drone is suitable for complete video taking and photography. Its CG02+ 3-axis gimbal camera masters full HD 60 FPS videos, as well as an astounding 16 megapixel still photos. This drone sports a “Follow Me” feature that instructs the drone to automatically track and follow a designated target, making the Typhoon Q500+ extremely user-friendly and versatile.
- For high-quality videos and photos, there is not much better than this camera, which takes full HD 60 FPS videos, as well as 16 megapixel stills – a filmmaker’s dream.
- The Typhoon Q500+ enables the camera to go from flying in the quadcopter to being used as a handheld camera on the ground with use of the included STEADYGRIP stick. The STEADYGRIP stick utilizes the 3-axis gimbal to give greater stabilization and allow much steadier footage.
- With Yuneec’s CGO app you will receive steady streaming of video straight to your Smartphone. They even includes controls that make it easy to start or stop the recording a video with the mere push of a button.
- The Typhoon Q500+ Quadcopter also includes an additional 32GB micro SD card for storing a large number of photos and videos. You will never run out of space.
Find deals on the Yuneec Typhoon Q500+ Quadcopter from Amazon here!
While there are a number of drones on the market today, not all are the perfect fit for creative entrepreneurs seeking to make money. In order to turn a drone hobby into a passionate, money-making drone business, entrepreneurs require a flexible, agile drone complete with a wide variety of features.
Outlined above are seven of the true standouts available on today’s market. Each of these is capable of creating exciting, professional videography, photography and aerial photography results. Each of the drones listed above are well-designed, powerful and intuitive. This means you will have the capabilities to create five-star videos and start making money with your next drone business idea immediately!