Best RC Drones For Aerial Photography Videography

You have seen what is possible with aerial photography today. You have see those amazing landscapes captured from a drone. Now you could capture new angles that simply were not possible few years ago.

With tech specifications of latest drones aerial filming is the star of the show. Camera capabilities has made that drones have gained wider market adoption. High-tech cameras mounted on those flying machines now make possible amazing footage of whatever you want to film.

Professionals photographers find in dones a helpful tool for their business. People who just want to have fun have the possibility of capturing their experiences in HD video. Creativity of people is exploding with the aid of these UAVs,

Wider Adoption Of Camera Drones - Many Applications

With each passing day many more people are using drones for aerial photography. One example of this is the real estate industry, as you may guess a prospect could be more interested on purchasing a property if the seller shows him/her overhead shots of homes, farms, buildings, etc.

And the great news is that drones are more and more affordable. The market has reached a great level of sophistication where what were the almost sci-fi features years ago now are the new standard. It's almost like letting the semi-automatic flying capabilities of your quadcopter take care of the flight operation while the camera operator do his/her job.

Semi-Automatic Flight Operations

Drones are truly one of the best tools for aerial photographers today. Now professional videographers and photographers have many options available since there are many programmable aircrafts in the market today.

While the quadcopter does its thing and make automatic calculation of wind speed and enable features like obstacle avoidance and range calculation according to battery life, you can, as a professional photographer, can concentrate on doing your part of the photography job.

DJI Mavic Pro

The first quadcopter we are going to feature in this article is the fantastic DJI Mavic Pro. It's one of the best options for people who travel a lot. It's a discreet and travel-friendly camera drone.​

Folding drones are an exciting feature that's paving the way for next generation of drones. Yes, It may be an expensive drone for many people, but the huge value offered by this tech marvel justifies its high price.

This drone comes with a 1080p /12MP action Camera plus G3-D 3-Axis Gimbal (compatible with GoPro & iLOOK) which makes it perfect for capturing awesome shots and professional videography.​​

Before recording video or taking any photos you have to remember to tap on your smartphone's screen in the GO app to focus. The reason for this is because the lens is no longer fixed focus as with previous DJI models. While this is supposed to be an advantage when filming objects close up, but since a lot of targets are far away this could be easy to forget to do if you are not used to.​

One thing that users may complain about is it's that you can't remove the gimbal and camera if you want to do some ground-based filming as many other models allow. But that minor detail is easily forgotten if you focus your attention to the huge benefits offered by its great portability.

DJI Mavic Pro 

The Mavic from DJI packs features you once thought possible only on much larger platforms into a compact quadcopter that is snappy, agile, and captures high-resolution images.


The drone features an advanced flight control system that draws on a host of sensors — including a ground-facing camera, ultrasound, GPS, dual redundant IMUs, and more — to keep track of where it is flying in 3D space and even avoid collisions.


The Mavic works in tandem with DJI's GO mobile app for accessing settings, getting a telemetry readout, viewing a low-latency video feed, and even editing and sharing your footage. In addition traditional joystick style controls, you can fly with simple tap-based commands, and the Mavic can even recognize gestures for the perfect selfie.

Take Your Mavic Pro Everywhere You Go!

Think about this, you can take the Mavic Pro everywhere you go, with this fold-up drone you don’t have to lug a big case around as you did for the Phantom model. The lack of portability is what made that users only used previous DJI models only for special occasions.

The compact foldable design of the Mavic Pro it's what it makes this quadcopter a friend of the traveller and that puts it way ahead of the competition. It comes with a controller resembling a controller for video games (that LCD screen looks impressive) only this time you will be using it for flying and controlling the camera. 

The controller display a lot of useful information where you can read altitude, motor RPM, speed and distance parameters very easy.

Battery life is very good for this being a quadcopter this small size.​it can fly for up to 27 minutes from a distance of approx.  7 km. This professional drone can reach a speed of 40 mph without wind. Combine this with the sensor redundancy flight, obstacle avoidance feature and you will experience a reliable and safer flight.

Another great drone, also from the same manufacturer of the Mavic is the the DJI Phantom 4 pro. With this drone you can achieve high resolution 4K video with its built-in camera. Not only it's the high resolution camera but the amazing image stabilization that will allow to do your job under almost any windy condition.

GPS assisted flight features let you concentrate on getting great images while the drone helps you fly safely, you can achieve advanced camera perspectives!

DJI Phantom 3 Standard Quadcopter

View a live image streamed from the drone up to a half mile away on the free DJI Go app using your mobile phone or tablet.

Global X183 Drone, Foutou 5.8GHz 6-axes

With a 6-Axis Gyro Sensitivity module provides unprecedented control. Pilots can fly, turn, rotate, spin, and even complete 360-degree flips all with precision and power.

The Phantom 4 Advanced

The Phantom 4 Advanced replaces the Phantom 4. Yes, It's more expensive but this ready-to-fly out of the box drone is a great choice if you need to capture complex cinematic aerial shots. It comes with Pro model's 20Mp camera which can be used to shoot 4K video at 60fps, and this camera is very easy to control.

The DJI Phantom 4 sports a 1/2.3-inch 12-mp imaging sensor. Thanks to its FOV 94 degree 20mm, f/2.8 lens, the four cameras of this Phantom can take amazing images even at close range. Taking pictures on the go is no problem, thanks to the camera’s high shutter speed (8s – 1/8000s). Regarding picture quality, the ventral camera of this drone is able to process images up to 4000x3000p.​ The light sensitivity factor for this camera is between 100 and 3200 when taking pictures and between 100 and 1600 for video.

The Phantom 4 Advanced 

The Phantom 4 Advanced from DJI boasts a 3-axis-stabilized gimbal camera with a 20MP, 1" CMOS sensor capable of shooting up to 4K/60fps video as well as photo bursts at up to 14 fps.

 

Distinct from its sibling, the Phantom 4 Pro, this Phantom benefits from a total of five vision sensors, which enable precise navigation where GPS is unavailable and provide two directions of obstacle detection.

 

Additionally, it adopts a titanium and magnesium body for increased rigidity and reduced weight. Like the Pro, the Advanced can attain a top speed of 45 mph in Sport Mode and can fly for up to 30 minutes.

Capture Fine Details With Slow Motion Video

Take advantage of the ability of taking slow motion video. This feature is very useful for those fast paced scenes where you want to capture fine details, or for sport journalism where you want to capture the best moments of the tournament. If your job is not a professional photographer you can also use this slow motion video for great shots of your last hiking adventure or playing any sport.

Keep in mind, a slower movement on the controller will always lead to better footage. Some DJI drones offer a ‘tripod mode’ which reduces the sensitivity of the control help you when framing a photo, and of course it can also be useful for panning when filming.

The new sport mode of the DJI Phantom 4 lets you get to your location faster. A safe related feature we must mention here is the Obstacle Sensing System which can help you to avoid head-on collisions. Another cool feature is the ability of tracking moving subjects. Also slow-motion video makes things even more great with this camera drone.

Check Out these Quadcopters To Create Cinematic Aerial Videos With Just A Few Taps..

DJI Spark

One of the main disadvantages of most high quality drones with aerial photography capabilities is that they're too big. This represents an inconvenient factor that makes users less prone to take out the drone except for a few special occasions.

Having said that is worth to mention that the Spark is even smaller than the Mavic Pro, so portability is not an issue here. And the best part is that you can control it with just using your hands. You can record video and take selfies  without a controller how cool is that! It features new Quick Shot modes which helps to create handy processed clips you can share to on social networks very easy.

The Spark doesn't fold up like the Mavic Pro, but this amazing drone is even smaller (and lighter) than the Mavic. It's an excellent choice and you will do fantastic with it!

Drones are each time more and more easy to fly and operate that is like you almost have a self-flying camera, it's capturing the best shots hands-free.

DJI Spark

QUICK LAUNCH With FaceAware, Spark lifts off from your hand by recognizing your face. It takes off and hovers in place within seconds of powering on.

 

SIMPLE CONTROL Take amazing aerial photos using just hand gestures, without a remote controller or mobile device.

 

CREATE WITH EASE Intelligent Flight Modes and intuitive controls help you create cinematic aerial videos with just a few taps.

 

EDIT AND SHARE The DJI GO 4 app features automatic editing templates and an array of filters. Quickly edit videos and share them straight to social media. 

Achieve Stunning Images And Explode Your Creativity

Quadcopters have brought a revolution to the way aerial photography is done. new unimaginable angles, tracking of moving targets, controlling for taps into your smartphone display, image stabilization, now what is left is that you explode your creativity in order to capture amazing shots.

Not only you can remote control the drone itself but also the optimal camera position for achieving best results. With the aid of wireless video streaming in real-time you can be monitoring if what you are capturing is what you really want, so you can re-do some takes in the fly.

Now drones come with personal ground stations which make you easier to capture the intended scenes. Couple this with no-distortion lens, advanced filters and more accessories and you will achieve almost anything your want with these drones.

Previous customers of big online retailers have left written reviews relating their experiences not only with the purchase but with the product itself. Take advantage of those reviews and find if a specific drone it's the perfect for aerial photography or not. What are its pros and cons. Online reviews allow you to know many things that will help you with your purchase decision.

Wouldn't be amazing being able to create that cinematic effect in your footage? Today is possible for everyday normal people to have amazing shots which were previously only reserved for professional filmmakers. That's why this hobby is been so popularized.

Another good drone manufacturer of drones with aerial filming capabilities is Hubsan. the Hubsan H501S comes with a built-in camera 1080p camera that's fixed in place with no gimbal or stabilisation. It also has a controller with a 3.7in screen for FPV. This quad as GPS, return-to-home function, brushless motors. The remote also has an analogue video output for use with matching FPV goggles.

What To Look In A Drone You Want To Use For Aerial Filming

One of the best features you want in a drone is how smooth is its flight. Read all that has to do with flight stabilization. After all you always want stable images with stunning high definition. Also pay attention to the lenses because they are obviously a very important factor in the final outcome.

Of course, how easy is to operate a specific model is also a great question. You want a drone that is ready-to-fly and that almost fly itself. You want crucial functions such as safe return home, obstacle avoidance, GPS positioning, planning the path in advance (very useful for planned takes), moving targets and of course a very smooth stable flight.

Not every drone with camera offers you First Person View, which means a real-time video stream. This FPV is very helpful for those cases where you don't have line-of-sight and also is useful because gives you that experience like if you were on board piloting from there.

If you want a drone for aerial filming you need to go for at least 1080p (1920x1080).​ You need to decide on the resolution and frame rate you’re going to use. Keep in mind that even if your drone is capable of shooting in 4K, you may choose a lower resolution with a higher frame rate, let's say 1080p at 60fps. Just a few quadcopters with camera, except those at the high end of the market sm can record 4K at more than 30fps.

Another must if you want to capture quality footage is to purchase a quadcopter with a gimbal. Gimbal is a stabilised camera mount which keeps the camera steady on those cases when the drone tilts or is moving around. If you have a GoPro (or other good action camera) then consider purchasing a drone capable of carrying a GoPro-style camera.

Camera Drones Are The New Best Friend Of Filmmakers

Some cameras are able to record video directly to a microSD card (or even a USB drive) but other cameras record from the remote control or  smartphone. Keep in mind direct recording is usually more reliable and final outcome will have better quality simply because video stream doesn't have to be transmitted over the air before being recorded.​

Camera-equipped quadcopters are the new best friend of filmmakers. I'm sure you have noted how aerial filming has revolutionized fields such as documentary filmmaking.

Many people who find those specialized drones too expensive have opted for strapping a high-quality camera (GoPro or another like that) to any affordable good quality drone. It's a cost effective solution that will allow you nearly the same results.

One final tip for now is do some test flight session trying  different settings each session, this is the best way to learn what works. Once you’re familiar with those camera settings you’ll be in a much better position to get great quality videos and photos when you’re flying over some interesting places.

Use these HD 720p drone cameras to take stunning photos and video while you fly...

Force1 U45W Blue Jay Wi-Fi FPV

The Blue Jay’s 2MP drone camera is your ticket to a 360° bird’s-eye view w/ optional VR capability

Holy Stone HS200 FPV RC Drone

First Person View 720P HD REAL TIME Video Camera (2MP, 1280×720 Pixel) enable you to take aerial videos and photos with your iPhone or Android phone device.

3DR Solo

3DR Solo 

The world’s smartest drone is also the easiest to fly. With features like pushbutton flight and computer-assisted Smart Shots, Solo makes it easy for anyone to get professional aerial photos and video.


Solo is powered by two 1 GHz computers for the best and smoothest aerial photography experience imaginable, and includes many world-first technologies and a host of built-in safety and support features.


It’s also the only all-in-one drone to offer wireless video streaming in vivid HD from your GoPro directly to your mobile device—at ranges up to half a mile.

If you are not in the professional photography business then you don't have to invest a lot of money in a high-end UAV. You might consider to start with an inexpensive model first and take many practice shots there. Look for those affordable beginner-friendly drones which are easy to take off, maneuverable, with a stable and smooth flight. The drone market offers several choices available for good prices (many good quadcopters are even under $100). 

Feel free to browse all the great options mentioned above. If you want to achieve stunning scenography and the best videography and photography results leverage the huge value these drones can offer to your professional photography business.