Welcome to my list of the best cheap drones for photography.

One of the best features of modern consumer drones is that they come with cameras which allows you to view the world from above and experience amazing places you may not have otherwise seen.

Many drones allow you to capture some amazing professional quality images and videos and the good thing is you don’t have to shell out $1000 for these drones.

The list I have compiled below is not an exhaustive list, but I believe it represents some of the best cheap best drones for photography that you can buy.

Most of the drones on this list cost under $600, although I have also listed the Mavic Air, which costs just over $700.

8 Best Cheap Drones For Photography

#1. DJI Mavic Mini

This is one of my favourite drones in any category, the DJI Mavic Mini is a lightweight compact drone that comes with many of the innovative features that have made DJI the no.1 consumer drone company. One of the best features of this drone is its weight, despite coming with many advanced features, the drone weighs less than 250g. This is a significant number because it means you will not need to register the drone with the FAA if you are just going to be flying for fun. The other main feature is its 2.7k HD camera that can record cinema-quality video footage and capture amazing still images. The camera is stabilised by an advanced gimbal system that will eliminate distortion and it can transmit live video feed in 720p at 30fps. The drone comes with some pre-programmed flight modes called Quickshots, when activated, you will be able to take some amazing videos hands-free. This is one of the most popular drones on the market and is an excellent choice for those looking to shoot cinematic videos and are on a tight budget.

Key Features

  • 2.7k/30fps camera
  • 720p@30fps FPV
  • 30 minutes of flight time
  • 4km transmission range
  • 3-axis gimbal
  • Quickshots allows you to take Hollywood style videos
  • Dual GPS for safer flight experience

#2. Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE

The Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE is one of the best drones for photography and the fact that it retails under $500 is kind of a bargain. It is a fantastically designed drone that has a foldable structure making it ultra-portable and this makes it a great drone to travel with. The drone comes with a fantastic 4K camera that is capable of recording HD footage at 30fps at a speed of 100 Mbps. The camera is stabilised by a mechanical 3-axis gimbal that will make sure videos and photos are crystal clear and free from any kind of distortion. It can capture HD images in both JPG and DNG RAW and stream live video footage in stunning high definition. The drone also comes with intelligent features such as smart tracking and automatic return home. It has a very good flight time and a range of around 8km, this is one of the best cheap drones for photography and is well worth the price.

Key Features

  • 4k/30fps camera
  • 12 MP still images
  • HDR support
  • 3-axis gimbal for superior quality videos and images
  • HD live streaming
  • 35 minutes of flight time
  • 8km transmission range

#3. DJI Mavic Air

This is one of the best-looking drones on this list, the DJI Mavic Air, as its names suggest, is a lightweight foldable drone that comes with some innovative features. The Mavic Air is the only drone on this list that comes with an obstacle avoidance system, so you can fly this drone with very little risk of crashing into anything. The obstacle avoidance system comes in very handy when you are flying in one of the drone’s intelligent flight modes and with its dual GPS system, flying this drone is a total breeze. The Mavic Air comes with a 4K camera that is stabilised by an advanced gimbal system. The camera can record professional video footage and capture amazing photos with its 1/2.3-inch 12 MP CMOS sensor. It has HDR support that will capture the true colours of any subject matter and you can record slow-motion videos like the ones you see on YouTube. It has a couple of pre-programmed flight modes that will allow you to take quick professional-quality videos totally hands-free and you can even take videos through hand gesture. This is a great drone for photography, but it is the most expensive on this list costing just over $700.

Key Features

  • 4k/30fps camera
  • 12MP still images
  • Advanced gimbal system
  • Shoots in both RAW and JPEG
  • Dual GPS system
  • Automatic return home
  • 21 minutes of flight time

#4. Hubsan Zino 2

The Hubsan Zino 2 is an upgrade the to Zino Pro, this is a fantastic drone for photography and a legitimate alternative to the more expensive 4K drone from DJI. The Zino 2 is a pretty large foldable drone and weighs just under 1kg. It’s powered by an intelligent lithium polymer battery which gives it a flight time of around 33 minutes, this is an exceptionally long flight time especially for a drone that costs less than $500. The camera has an Ambarella H22 chipset installed, this will allow you to record amazing video footage in ultra-high-definition 4K at 60fps. The chipset also has an electronic image stabilisation feature that will help in eliminating any distortion from your videos and photos. You can record slow-motion and hyperlpase videos and records video footage at a speed of 100 Mbps. The drone also comes with several intelligent flight modes that will allow you to take better videos and photos without having to worry about controlling the drone. For its price, this drone is a bargain when compared to other drones with similar features.

Key Features

  • 4k/60fps camera
  • 12MP sensor
  • 3-axis gimbal
  • Ambarella H22 chipset with EIS
  • HDR support
  • 33 minutes of flight time
  • 8km control range

#5. Hubsan Zino Pro

The Zino Pro is probably the most popular drone in the Hubsan Zino range, it’s a foldable drone that has a sleek design and is a great drone to travel with. It has a cool all-black colour scheme with a nice green logo on the top and is one of the best-looking drones on this list. This is a powerful drone that comes with brushless motors, dual GPS system and intelligent flight modes. It is one of the cheapest 4K camera drones on the market, it can record 4K video footage at 30fps and capture 12MP still images with its Sony image sensor. The drone comes with an advanced image chipset from Ambarella that will help in stabilising your videos and photos and allows for the camera to record in FHD 4K. The camera is compatible with ND filters and is supported by an advanced gimbal system. It comes with a dual GPS system for a smoother and safer flying experience and has a few smart flight modes including follow me mode. Definitely one of the best cheap drones for photography.

Key Features

  • 4K/30fps camera
  • 12MP CMOS sensor
  • Electronic image stabilisation
  • Ambarella image chipset
  • Gimbal stabilisation system
  • Stream video footage in HD
  • 23 minutes of flight time
  • Intelligent flight modes

#6. Hubsan Zino

This is the original Hubsan Zinoand although it is not as powerful as most of the other drones on this list, it is the only drone that I have comes across that has an actual 4K camera and costs less than $300. It is the cheapest drone for photography on this list and in my opinion perfect for people who are on a tight budget. The camera is supported by a 3-axis gimbal and has an Ambarella image chipset both will make sure that your videos and photos are free from any kind of distortion. The camera comes with a Sony image sensor that is capable of capturing photos in 13MP and allows you to shoot amazing panorama photography. Other features this drone comes with include dual GPS system, automatic return home and image tacking capability.

 

Key Features

  • 4K/30fps camera
  • 13MP Sony image sensor
  • 3-axis gimbal
  • Ambarella image chipset
  • HD live video streaming
  • 1km range
  • 23 minutes of flight time

#7. Parrot Anafi

The Parrot Anafi is one of the lightest 4K drones and has a unique foldable design that makes it easy to pack and carry around. It comes with an amazing camera that can capture images in 21MP and record 4k videos at 30fps and comes with HDR support. The camera is supported by a 2-axis gimbal that can be tilted 180° which will allow you to get better viewing angles. It also has an electronic stabilisation feature, so in essence, it has a 3-axis hybrid gimbal. The camera has a 1/2.4-inch image sensor that can shoot in both DNG RAW and JPEG and comes with a 2.8* lossless zoom feature. Live streaming is transmitted in 720p quality and has a range of around 4km. The drone also has a couple of intelligent flight modes and comes with a decent flight time of 25 minutes.

Key Features

  • 4K/30fps camera
  • 1/2.4-inch CMOS sensor
  • 3-axis hybrid gimbal
  • HDR support
  • 720p live streaming
  • Intelligent flight modes
  • Automatic return home
  • 4km transmission range

#8. Yuneec Mantis G

The Mantis G is another lightweight foldable drone that is perfect for travel photographers. It has one of the best flight times on this list at 33 minutes and is a pretty fast drone, it can reach a top speed of around 72 km/h in its sport mode. The camera has a wide-angle view and can be remotely adjusted to get better viewing angles. It comes with a 13MP CMOS sensor and captures images in both JPEG and DNG format. The camera is stabilised by a 2-axis gimbal that will help eliminate distortion and keep your videos and images crystal clear and smooth. The drone comes with a voice control feature has a couple of intelligent flight modes. Another useful feature is that you will be able to share your videos and photos from within the drone app to your social media accounts.

 

Key Features

  • 4K/30fps camera
  • 13MP Sony image sensor
  • 3-axis gimbal
  • Ambarella image chipset
  • HD live video streaming
  • 1km range
  • 23 minutes of flight time
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