Decoder analyzed more than 41,675 reviews to find which drones under $500 are loved by shoppers, and which ones standout based on the following important qualities:
- Battery Life
- Camera Quality
- Ease Of Setup
- Return to Home
Read more about what factors to consider when shopping for drones in our buyer's guide.
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The camera quality and easy setup make this drone a great choice for beginners or those who are more experienced. However, the battery life could be better and the app is difficult to use.
Rank based on 2,794 reviews
A great drone for beginners who want something durable and easy to fly. However, the camera quality is not great and the return to home feature needs some improvement.
Rank based on 2,355 reviews
An excellent beginner drone that is easy to fly and maneuver. The camera quality is excellent, producing HD video and pictures. The battery life is exceptional for the class of drone. However, the camera quality is not 4K and the battery takes awhile to charge.
Rank based on 3,329 reviews
The DJI Mavic Air is a great drone for beginners. It has good camera quality, is easy to setup, and has a good battery life. The return to home feature also works well.
Rank based on 1,089 reviews
The camera quality and GPS features make this drone great for those looking to get into aerial photography. However, tech support is poor and the Return To Home feature should only be used in wide open areas.
Rank based on 606 reviews
The camera quality is excellent for its price range and it's easy to use. It's a great starter drone for anyone looking to get into the hobby, but it does not do well in low light conditions.
Rank based on 569 reviews
The DJI Phantom 4 Pro is a great drone for those looking for a high-quality camera and smooth flying experience.
Rank based on 395 reviews
The DJI Mavic Air 2 is a great drone for those looking for a good quality camera and long battery life. However, the range isn't as good as advertised and the camera quality could be better.
Rank based on 636 reviews
The DJI Spark is a great entry-level drone that is easy to fly and takes great photos and videos. However, the camera is not very stable and the initial setup process may be a little complicated for some.
Rank based on 583 reviews
The Holy Stone HS100D is a great camera drone for its price point. It takes crisp pictures and videos and is easy to set up, but its return to home feature can be unreliable.
Rank based on 381 reviews