Getting started with aerial videography can seem like an enormous task at first but this article should help you get started in your journey to becoming a drone pilot. When we talk about a drone, we almost certainly think of a multicopter or a quadcopter. Featuring four or more propellers, drones now serve as flying cameras for all your aerial photography and videography needs.

However, the market is filled with a wide range of models with different specs, designs and features.

What are the best drones for getting started with drone photography and video?

DJI Phantom 4

Starting off with more of an advanced level drone, the Phantom 4 brings with it a more sturdy construction, updated object-avoidance technology and – like so many of DJI’s offerings – an excellent dedicated remote control which connects to an equally feature-rich smartphone app. 4K video recording is supported, and the gimbal design means you get the steadiest footage even when the drone is moving at full speed and changing direction. The biggest downside is battery life, which is only around 15 to 20 minutes, depending on how hard you’re pushing the drone. You can capture professional level footage with this drone.

DJI Mavic 2 Zoom

DJI’s Mavic Pro revolutionized the way we see camera drones. Did you think it was possible to carry and fold a good-quality lens without putting a dent in either the weight or volume of your carry-on? The drone camera became so popular that many other brands copied the functionality and features of this amazing product. The drone camera is also available in a Pro version.

Some of the most exciting features of this model include the hyperlapse mode and a quick shot dolly zoom emulator, which give this camera an edge over its rivals. The Zoom features a zoom lens (24-48mm efl) which is great for cinematic effects. The drone camera offers a flight time of around 31 minutes and an impressive 8 GB internal storage. With a max speed of 44 mph, the camera guarantees superior performance.

DJI Spark

Spark offers great value for money. Although it doesn’t fold, the propellers do! Thanks to its rugged body and high definition 1080p resolution, the drone camera offers superior performance and tracks subjects well. DJI is known for making spectacular products and this drone camera is worth every penny. This is the perfect drone to learn on.

With its intelligent flight mode, you get flawless footage and intuitive Quick Shot Videos with just a tap. The camera is built to detect clearly patterned surfaces and guarantees precision control. Spark recognizes your face to lift off from your hands and you can capture incredible aerial shots without having to use a mobile phone or remote control.

DJI Mavic Air

The Mavic Air is a ground-breaking technical achievement, a powerful drone that features rear, downward and front-facing distance sensors. This product is capable of identifying obstacles and efficiently plots a course to avoid a tree or wall.

Another great feature of the product is the controller which folds away beautifully. DJI’s app also offers some really cool effects. With 3-dimensional environment sensing capabilities, the drone camera offers a maximum flight time of 21 minutes. Foldable and portable, the model’s gimbal dampeners ensure steadier shots for superior aerial videography.

Parrot Anafi

Europe’s biggest drone manufacturer, the French company Parrot, launched Anafi in mid 2018. While some users don’t like the carbon-fiber elements of the drone’s body, the model is one of the best built products on the market. Thanks to its automatic take-off and landing along with GPS-based features, the drone camera is easy to operate.

The only drawback might be the gimbal which is only powered on two axes and depends on the software to manage sharp turns. For that reason, the manufacturers charge extra for in-app features including follow-me modes.

On the plus side, the gimbal can be turned for an unobstructed angle which is something most drones fail to manage. There is also a zoom feature which is great.

ZeroTech Dobby

Dobby is an easy-to-fly drone camera which is capable of flying up to 100 meters away from any Android or iOS device. Simply unfold the prop arms and sync your device and have a blast with the DoFun app. Featuring intelligent flight modes, Dobby is great at target/face tracking, somersault and video selfie.

Did you know you could even control this model with your voice? The drone camera can shoot in 4K when you switch off EIS or the digital stabilization. You get fairly decent 13 megapixel stills, but performance can vary while shooting videos. Dobby works best in environments with no wind. However, it’s a brilliant device for taking short video bites and taking selfies.

Bottom Line

Always make sure to check your local laws and regulations to avoid fines. In some cases you may be required to apply for a filming permit. Drone cameras are great for capturing aerial shots and covering events. When buying the best drone camera make sure you choose a model from our top list to get the best one for your aerial videography needs.

After making your big purchase you may want to start thinking about getting your drone insured. Make sure and consider if this is something you’ll need when starting your drone career as a professional or just a hobbyist. If you plan to fly commercially you’ll need to get your Part 107 Drone Certification with the FAA.
Learning to fly a drone
Learning how to fly a drone
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