Best Small Drones & Mini Quadcopters

With that criterion in mind, here is the Top 10 Small Drones and Quadcopters of 2018:

Whether you are looking to purchase your very first drone, or if you consider yourself a seasoned expert, if you’re looking for the best drone with a camera or searching for the best mini drone price with the most useful features, we have compiled a list of the best mini drones of 2018.

If you are at a beginner level, it is helpful to know how drones and quadcopters work, and all about the technology that is driving this ever-expanding industry. Knowing the industry and the many features available will help guide your purchasing decision.

A good foundation of information can be found in this drone definition. If you are new to flying drones or quadcopters, it also pays to be aware of the current drone laws and drone permits.

Most people purchasing a mini drone, a nano quad, or a drone helicopter for the first time will look for a unit that is simple to fly right out of the box, has sufficient protection to withstand collisions or drops, and be reasonably priced.

As your skills grow as a drone pilot, or if you want a more forgiving learning curve as a beginner, you may look for many of the features available, including:

  • One-Push 360-Degree Flips and Spins
  • Adjustable Speed Modes
  • High Quality Camera
  • Customizable Stabilization Technology
  • Obstacle Avoidance Technology
  • First-Person View (FPV)
  • Hand and Face Recognition Technology

These and many others will push the limits of the aircraft’s maneuverability and create a more enjoyable experience with less crashes.

Understanding that crashes are inevitable, finding a mini drone at a low price point will make you feel better if you need to replace it. That is why we have compiled this list focused on the best drones under $100.


DB Power Hawkeye Quad

DB Power Hawkeye Quad

This Quadcopter is extremely well-built and durable, so newbies need not worry if they crash from time to time. You can even attach training wheels to the Hawkeye to get the hang of the controls before lift-off.

There is also a speed switch button to control your flight until you’re ready for more advanced maneuvers, making it one of the best drones to learn on.

Features:

  • Flight Time: 6-9 Minutes
  • Charging Time: 60 Minutes
  • Transmission Distance: 30 Meters
  • 4 Motor Driver and 6 Axis Gyro
  • 4 GHz Transmitter
  • Adjust Speed Mode with the Flip of a Switch
  • One-Push 360-Degree Flips
  • Durable Blades and Construction
  • 2MP Camera with 720p for Video


Holy Stone HS170 Predator Mini

Holy Stone HS170 Predator Mini

One of the best drones under $100, the highlight of the HS170 Predator Mini is it’s actually designed to fly in outdoor breezy conditions—even with only a 10.6-inch wingspan.

The Predator is durable, weather-resistant, and aerodynamic, and comes with smart features such as Headless Flight Mode.

A removable battery makes up for the low flight time of 6-8 minutes. Purchasing spare batteries will allow you to get back into the air faster.

Features:

  • Flight Time: 6-8 Minutes
  • Transmission Distance: 80 Meters
  • Weight: 14.4 Ounces
  • Battery Charging Time: 45-60 Minutes
  • 4GHz Transmission Frequency with 4 Channels
  • 6-Axis Gyro Stabilization System
  • Color-Coded Front and Rear Motors
  • LED Lighting

Included Accessories:

  • Removable 3.7V 350mAh Li-ion Battery
  • Additional Blades
  • USB Charger
  • Screwdriver
  • Propellers Crowbar


Sky Viper Nano Drone

Sky Viper Nano Drone

Only 3 inches in diameter and priced at only around $30, the Sky Viper Nano flies with agility and control, making it one of the best mini drones for beginners.

Its small size makes it an ideal indoor drone, but it is also able to handle itself outdoors in relatively calm conditions.

Its adjustable speed rates make learning to fly a breeze and an ideal toy drone for children. You can also rotate or flip it, and perform barrel rolls.

Features:

  • Size: 2.7 x 7.8 x 9.8 Inches
  • Weight: less than 250 grams
  • Transmission Range: 20 meters
  • Transmission Frequency: 2.4 GHz
  • 2-Speed Adjustment: 50% or 100%
  • 1-Touch Stunt Button
  • Auto launch, Auto hover & Auto land.


Eachine E10C Nano Quadcopter

Eachine E10C Nano Quadcopter

The E10C Nano Quadcopter is so small it can sit atop your fingers like a butterfly. It fits the price-point of a beginner drone and is equipped with a 2.0 MP 720p resolution HD camera.

It can be programmed to 3 different speed modes, can perform a 360 rollover, is well-built and durable. Its colorful LED lights help with directional orientation.

Features:

  • Flight Time: 6 minutes
  • Charging Time: 35 minutes
  • Transmission Range: 20 meters
  • 4GHz Transmission Frequency
  • Weight: 0.5 ounces
  • 0 MP Camera with 720p Resolution
  • Adjustable 6-Axis Gyro Stabilization System
  • Directional LED Lights
  • 360-Degree 3D Rolling

Included Accessories:

  • 7V 120mah Battery
  • USB Charging Cable
  • Spare Blades


Syma X11C Mini Drone

Syma X11C Mini Drone

The X11C Mini Drone is a compact model that performs well in the air, and a solid option for a mini drone under $100.

The 360-degree rolling function allows a high level of maneuvering and the HD camera produces high-quality images. This is one of the best cheap drones available to fly indoors or out.

Features:

  • Flying Time: 7 minutes
  • Charging Time: 40 minutes
  • Transmission Range: 40 meters
  • 4GHz Transmission Frequency with 4 Channels
  • Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • 6-Axis Gyro Stabilization System
  • 2 Speed Options
  • 360 Degree Eversion

Included Accessories:

  • Card Reader
  • 4GB SD Card
  • USB Cable
  • Removable 3.7V 250mAh Battery
  • Spare Blades


Cheerson CX10 Mini Quad

Cheerson CX10 Mini Quad

The Cheerson CX10 Mini Quad is one of the top-selling mini drones for several reasons, and it’s no wonder why it’s on our list of best drones of 2018.

Simple yet powerful, this tiny orange flying machine is one of the best drones for beginners, best drones for kids, and just about anyone who doesn’t want to break the bank—seeing as they go for only about $20.

This mini drone can fly up to 120 feet, hover in place, do side-to-side flight, perform flips, and take off from the palm of your hand.

Overall, especially at its low price, the CX10 Mini is considered to be one of the best mini drones with a camera on the market.

Features:

  • Flight Time: 4-8 Minutes
  • Charging Time: 30-40 Minutes
  • Transmission Range: 30-40 Meters
  • Weight: 15g
  • 4GHz Transmission Frequency with 4 Channels
  • 3 Speed Modes
  • 3 MP Camera
  • LED Lights
  • Low-Battery Alarm
  • 6-Axis Gyro Stabilization

Included Accessories:

  • USB Cable
  • Spare Blades


Blade Nano QX

Blade Nano QX

The Blade Nano QX is a logical next step for pilots graduating from beginner status. It is a high-performance mini drone under $100 with advanced features that allow you to take full control of the aircraft.

The Nano QX is equipped with SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology, which allows for effortless takeoffs, prevents collisions, and can automatically stabilize itself if you get into trouble.

When you’re ready to take off the training wheels, you can turn off the stabilizing gyroscope and have the freedom to execute a variety of tricks and stunts. It’s also considered one of the fastest mini drones around.

Features:

  • Flight Time: 10 minutes
  • Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • 6-Axis Gyro Stabilization System
  • Transmission Frequency: 2.4 GHz
  • 720p HD Camera
  • SAFE Assistance Technology

Included Accessories:

  • Yellow and Green Canopies and Nano QX Graphics
  • Assortment of Extra Rotor Blades
  • 1S 3.7V 150mAh 25C Li-Po Battery
  • Compact USB Li-Po Battery Charger


Blade Inductrix FPV RTF

Blade Inductrix FPV RTF

With an indoor drone, there’s a greater likelihood to bump into objects, which is exactly what the engineers had in mind when they created the duct fan-like frame of the Inductrix FPV RTF. It can absorb impact without losing complete control, allowing for a quick mid-air recovery.

The maneuverability aided by SAFE technology creates an automatic level of stabilization. Or you can switch to Agility Mode to release stability restrictions and manually flip and roll through your desired course.

The unit comes with a 4.3-inch FPV monitor that attaches to the transmitter for easy hands-free operation when controlling your racer.

An added feature is the Meow Mode, and like a cat with 9 lives, when the Inductrix lands upside down on its back you can double-click a button and two motors will quickly engage, flipping the mini drone back upright.

With all these features, the Inductrix FPV RTF is one of the best FPV mini drones available. The only downside is a very short flight time, so extra batteries are a must.

Features:

  • Flight Time: 4-6 minutes
  • Charging Time: 40 minutes
  • 4 Channel Transmitter
  • Sturdy Construction
  • SAFE technology
  • Meow Mode
  • LED lights

Included Accessories:

  • 3-inch FPV Screen (with whip antenna)
  • 200mAh 45C Li-Po flight battery
  • USB charger (included)


Altair Aerial AA108

Altair Aerial AA108

The Altair Aerial AA108 is an advanced drone with sophisticated features that allows beginners to easily and safely navigate a stable flight.

It is equipped with a 720p camera with a 120-degree wide-angle, features Headless Mode, Altitude Hold, and one-button takeoff and landing.

Although the Aerial AA108 is one of the best drones for beginners, it also appeals to experts with its features and performance.

Features:

  • Flight Time: 10 minutes
  • Transmission Distance: 300 feet
  • Weight: 1.7 Pounds
  • Camera: 720p With Real-Time FPV
  • Advanced Remote Control Functions
  • Out-of-Range and Low-Battery Alarms
  • Emergency Landing Function

Included Accessories:

  • 2 Batteries – 3.7v LiPo
  • Memory Card Reader (Memory Card Not Included)
  • Extra Propellers
  • Prop Installation Kit & Screwdriver


DJI Spark

DJI Spark

With the most advanced features to date, the DJI Spark is in a higher price range, but the features and performance of this drone well exceed every other unit listed here.

Upon takeoff, the Spark enters “Gesture Mode,” which has scanning technology that can recognize faces and hand gestures, allowing you to control it without a smartphone or transmitter.

By using Palm Control, you can:

  • Direct the drone to fly back and up and then begin to track you.
  • Take a selfie photo or video.
  • Call the drone to return to you when you raise your arms like a “Y.”
  • Automatically land in your hand.

With a 2-axis gimbal camera which shoots 12MP photos or 1080p/30 HD video, you can program the Spark to rocket up, fly in a circle around you, or take off on a pre-programmed flight path using waypoints to set your course.

It flies with GPS satellite positioning and a 3D obstacle-sensing system, which allows it to avoid collisions. The sophisticated FPV and top speed of 31mph make it an exceptional racing drone.

Less than a pound and compact enough to stuff into your backpack, the DJI Spark is one of the most technologically advanced small drones on the market.

Features:

  • Flight Time: 16 minutes
  • Transmission Distance: 1.2 miles
  • Speed: Up to 31 mph
  • FPV Range: 98 Feet
  • Weight: .66 Pounds
  • 2-Axis Stabilized Gimbal Camera
  • 12MP Still Photos / 1080p/30 Video
  • Gesture Fly Control
  • FlightAutonomy with Obstacle Detection
  • Subject Tracking from Various Angles
  • GPS- & Vision Position-Based Navigation


Conclusion

There are many good-quality mini drones under $100, so much of your purchasing decision depends on the features you’re looking for.

  • Will it be a toy drone for a child?
  • Will it be used for capturing high-quality and photos?
  • Are battery life and transmission distance paramount?
  • Do you seek the speed and agility of a racing drone or require the use of a waterproof drone?

With the variety of options available on the market today, it has never been easier or more affordable to attain a high-performance small drone or mini quadcopter.