Quadcopters and Drones are one of the coolest things you can buy right now but they are quite new to the market which means it can be difficult to choose the best quadcopter for you. You will find when you look online and in-store there are a wide range of buying choices and new ones are released all the time as the technology advances. In the future we will see some very advanced models flying around which should have very impressive battery life and photography capabilities but which is the best one you can get your hands on right now?

That question is not easy to answer because it depends on your budget and also how serious you are about this quadcopter flying hobby. The DJI models are the most advanced out there, especially their brand new offering, the Inspire 1 which comes with fantastic features and a great 1080p camera. However if you are just looking to have some fun and play around with a new toy then there are budget models like the UDI U818A which really is a joy to fly but isn’t for a professional photographer for example. Ultimately the best way to make a decision is to sit back, take some time and read through some quadcopter reviews.

Things to consider
These days you will find that not only are hobbyists, amateur photographers and casual users buying drones but also professionals. These people realize just what they can offer to their business whether they are a real estate agent or work in surveillance. It doesn’t stop there though, aside from the US military there are other huge organizations that have plans for them. Amazon sees a future where their packages are delivered using drones and already have big plans for this with Amazon Air. Could it be that one day everything you order could be delivered by these machines, including perhaps your own drone?

Build Quality
This is where you get what you pay for, the more expensive quadcopters normally have a pretty sturdy build though you should check individual reviews for specific issues. Whilst on the other hand, those cheaper things you see are not real drones but more like little toys you can fly around. If that is what you are looking for then go ahead but don’t expect a serious quadcopter or that it will last a particularly long time. If you are investing a lot of money then you should expect your drone to be made from premium materials and be able to handle changes in winds and temperatures when flying. Remember that fancy features are only worth it if the drone is going to keep going after frequent flight sessions.

Power
Drones use battery power to run as opposed to gas which is often used by large RC airplanes and helicopters. This means it is easier for the user but battery life is still fairly short with most models because of the amount of tasks they have to carry out. It is important to know that it’s not all about size when it comes to judging the battery life. Just like laptops, some quadcopters are more power efficient than others. This generally depends on their weight, for example a small drone with a small battery will probably last for as along as larger drone with a high capacity battery. Ultimately to increase flight time it’s a good idea to have a spare battery that you can swap out and get back in the skies again. It’s not unusual for the best hobbyists to have many batteries hooked up to power supplies at a time. These guys don’t mess around!

Methods of Control
It’s becoming more and more common and almost standard now that the best drones have the ability to be controlled from a smartphone or tablet. This is achieved by either a cellular, WiFi or bluetooth connection. At this stage it my not be ideal for all users because you may not have a smartphone with a strong enough antenna to keep a stable connection with the quadcopter. If you do some research and read reviews you should be able to easily find out whether your drone can work well with a smartphone, and your one in particular.

Of course the standard way to control the quadcopter is to use an radio control handset. This has been used for many decades for RC devices and it still works very well, you won’t have problems with keeping a connection with your drone (though they are designed to fly home if there is). Some people also prefer a more hardware way of controlling their flyer rather than moving their fingers on an LCD screen, it can be more intuitive.

Ease of Assembly
Unless you are a serious hobbyist and veteran of assembling your own model boats, cars, helicopters etc then it’s best to choose a drone where the amount of user assembly is minimal. This is for your own benefit as there is less than can go wrong, it is similar to the argument people might use when comparing Macs to PCs.

How easy is it to replace parts?
If you’re just getting into flying drones then expect at some point you will have an accident and something will get broken. Don’t fret it, if you have chosen one which has many parts available then you can often get it fixed pretty easily and cheaply. Though you should also anticipate that eventually you have an engine or rotor issue which needs replacement. This happens to the best aircraft in the business so it’s perfectly logical that it can happen to yours too. If you choose one of the most popular models you will have no problems finding the parts that you need to get yourself in flight again.