9 Best Drones under $200 in 2021 – With HD Camera, GPS & FPV

Flying a drone is an ultimate fun. With a perfect drone camera, you can capture superb quality and nice looking aerial photos and videos.
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Drones are very popular nowadays.

They are extensively used to capture superb quality photos & videos.

People are buying drones to enjoy flying to their greatest limits and capture cool-looking photos. If this sounds cool to you then this article is for you.

Flying a drone is one of the fastest growing hobby in 2021.

But choosing a perfect drone for you is a daunting task because most of the drones have identical features and functionalities at this price range.

For making your life easy, I have rounded-up the list of best drones under $200.

List of Best Drones

  1. Holy Stone HS100Best Overall
  2. Potensic T25
  3. Altair 818 Hornet BeginnerBest for Beginner’s
  4. Eachine EX4Editor’s Choice
  5. Holy Stone HS700D
  6. Holy Stone HS270
  7. Holy Stone HS165
  8. SNAPTAIN SP500
  9. Eachine E520S

But before we jump-in and start discussing,

If you are not familiar with fundamentals of drone flying then continue reading the following section or Click Here to jump to the discussion of best drones under 200 dollars.

Things to know before buying a Drone

  1. FAA Regulations
  2. Flying Time
  3. Flying Range
  4. Image Stabilization
  5. Camera Quality
  6. FPV (First-Person-View)
  7. RTH (Return-to-Home)
  8. Extra Features (Gesture Control, Follow-me, One-key handling, etc.)

Let’s discuss them briefly,

#1 – FAA Regulations

The FAA stands for Federal Aviation Administrations. It is responsible for the regulation and implementation of aviation aspects.

You can’t fly your drone anywhere without the permission from US Government. Yes! You heard it right!

In case of drones weighing more than 55 pounds (250 gm), registration with FAA is compulsory.

Few areas are drone-restricted. This B4UFLY app by FAA will help you identify those areas.

For detailed information about FAA Regulations, check this website.

#2 – Flying Time – is the key

The total time for which a drone stays in the air is known as the Flying Time.

At this price range, drones have a flying time of 10 to 20 minutes.

It depends on the battery capacity of the drone. Generally, people purchase an extra battery to double the flying time.

#3 – Flying Range

Flying Range is the maximum distance upto which a drone can safely fly (without getting lost).

The fact is, further it goes, the more fun you will experience!

Drone flying range at this price is going to be 400 to 1000 meters.

Note that the communication between a drone’s transmitter and receiver is based on radio waves. So, sometimes due to the interference, drones will fail to travel the distance specified by the manufacturer.

Ex. This can happen in case of a drone flying near a cell phone tower.

#4 – Image Stabilization

This feature is particularly useful for people planning to capture aerial photos and videos.

Excellent stabilization is must for drones to capture sharp and clear images. Your drone camera should hover with superb stabilization regardless of the motion and tilt of the drone.

Image stabilization feature avoids shakiness and jello effect in photos.

It can be achieved through,

  1. Gimbal
  2. Altitude Hold
  3. Digital Stabilization

Gimbal offers maximum image stabilization.

If you are a pilot and not a photographer then you may need not emphasize on this feature. But for a drone photographer, it is must!

#5 – Camera Quality

Drones at this price range will have a camera of 1080p, 2.7k, or 4k resolution.

Along with the resolution, you need to look at the frame rate, FOV (Field of View), shutter speed, and aperture of the camera.

If you plan to mount an external camera to the drone, consider the effect of additional weight on flying time.

#6 – FPV – First Person View

FPV is one of the vital drone features.

Using a set of VR Goggles, you can view real-time footage captured by the drone camera and start feeling like sitting in the aeroplane’s cockpit and flying like a superhero.

Yup! It exactly feels as it sounds.

#7 – RTH – Return-to-Home

This feature allows your drone to return to the Start Point when it senses low battery or signal loss.

Due to our beginner-level flying skills we have lost two drones after exceeding the maximum flying range during initial days of drone-ing!

Sometimes people fail to notice that the drone’s battery is running out of charge.

In such a case, if there wouldn’t be a RTH function, then the drone might fly away forever.

Almost every drone on this list have RTH feature.

#8 – Additional Features

Even at the price of $200, a drone is packed with the variety of features. It depends upon the brand.

  • Intelligent Geofence: With this feature, you can define the area within which your drone should fly. This avoids too high or too far travelling of drone.
  • Follow Me: It allows drone to follow you by tracking a smartphone or remote controller in your hands.
  • Waypoint Mode: It will let you point a location on your smartphone where the drone will travel by himself.
  • One-key Take-off and Landing: This feature would prevent you from destroying your drone due to your beginner-level landing.

Okay! So that was all about the drone basics.

Now let we jump-in to the details without any further ado,

1. Holy Stone HS100

Holy Stone HS100 - Best Drone under 200 - ULTRAdvice.com

The Holy Stone HS100 is our top pick on this list, because it packs highly competitive features compared to the rivals at the same price.

Discussion about budget-friendly drones is incomplete without mentioning the brand Holy Stone.

The HS100 drone from Holy Stone equips a GPS to ensure stable flight performance and a impressive 2K (2048×1152 pixel) Camera with 120° wide-angle lens.

To experience the thrilling live video (FPV) transmission you need to download and install the official Holy Stone Drone App.

Specifications

  1. Flying Time: 18 Minutes
  2. Flying Range: 600 meters
  3. FPV Transmission Range: 350 meters
  4. Image Stabilization: Altitude Hold
  5. RTH: Yes
  6. Battery: 7.4V, 3500mAh

Additionally, it comes with brushed motors, one-key take-off/landing, follow me mode, a few LED lights underneath rotor arms, etc.

Holy Stone HS100 has robust construction and decent performance.

Benefits

  • Easy to learn
  • FPV compatible
  • Good flying time
  • RTH (Return-to-Home)
  • 2K Camera
  • GPS

Drawbacks

  • Long charging time
  • Brushed motors

2. Potensic T25

Potensic T25 - Best Drone under 200 - ULTRAdvice.com

The Potensic T25 is perfect for beginners.

Design and look of this drone is very identical to that of DJI Phantom 4 Pro.

T25 captures excellent quality images and videos with a 1080p camera featuring a 120° wide-angle lens. The 3 Speed Mode allow you to operate this drone as a beginner, intermediate, and advanced pilot.

It is compact and made from high-quality plastic.

Specifications

  1. Flying Time: 10 Minutes
  2. Flying Range: 300 meters
  3. FPV Transmission Range: 100-150 meters
  4. Image Stabilization: 9-Axis Gyroscope
  5. RTH: Yes
  6. Battery: 3.7V, 1000mAh

The 9-Axis Gyroscope is the selling point of this drone. It helps in stabilizing the drone camera to capture excellent images.

The Waypoint mode allows you to draw a custom path in the mobile app that drone will follow flawlessly. Additional feature includes the dual battery, low battery indicator, headless mode, follow me function, FPV, etc.

Benefits

  • Easy to learn
  • FPV compatible
  • Comes with extra battery
  • Brushless motors
  • RTH (Return-to-Home)
  • 1080p camera
  • GPS

Drawbacks

  • Long charging time
  • Low flying time

3. Altair 818 Hornet Beginner

Altair 818 Hornet Beginner - Best Drone under 200 - ULTRAdvice.com

This cute looking drone from Altair is designed for beginners and kids.

The 818 Hornet equips sturdy frame to survive hard landings and collisions. The drone is ready for both indoor as well as outdoor flying.

It comes with 3 Control Settings. Once you get hang of flying on lower settings, just increase skill level in settings and unlock more speed and maneuverability!

Specifications

  1. Flying Time: 15 Minutes
  2. Flying Range: 150 meters
  3. FPV Transmission Range: 60 meters
  4. Image Stabilization: Altitude Hold
  5. RTH: No
  6. Battery: 7.4V

Newbies should not fly this drone so high with super-sonic speed because it doesn’t have a RTH feature.

It comes with a decent camera of 720p resolution with a 120° wide-angle lens. One can enjoy live video transmission (FPV) through their smartphone or VR Goggles.

Benefits

  • Beginner-friendly
  • Easy to learn
  • Brushless motors
  • Good flying time
  • FPV compatible
  • 720p camera

Drawbacks

  • Long charging time
  • Lack of RTH (Return-to-Home)

4. Eachine EX4

Eachine EX4 - Best Drone under 200 - ULTRAdvice.com

The Eachine Ex4 equips 3-Axis Gimbal for image stabilization which makes it standout on this list of best drones under $200.

This medium sized drone packs excellent features at this price.

It offers 25 minutes of flying time! The drone is relatively faster because of the brushless motors.

The 4K HD Camera by Eachine EX4 boasts the resolution of 4096×3072 pixels.

Specifications

  1. Flying Time: 25 Minutes
  2. Flying Range: 1000 meters
  3. FPV Transmission Range: 1000 meters
  4. Image Stabilization: 3-Axis Gimbal
  5. RTH: Yes
  6. Battery: 11.1V, 2400mAh

It has bunch of additional features that includes One Key Return, Waypoint Mode, Follow Me, Gesture Control Mode, 3 Smart Flight Modes, and more.

We recommend this drone especially to photographers because of the features like high-quality camera, 3-axis Gimbal, highly stable hovering, and longer flying range.

Benefits

  • Compact design
  • Excellent flying time
  • 3-Axis Gimbal
  • Brushless Motors
  • FPV Compatible
  • RTH (Return-to-Home)
  • 4K camera
  • GPS

Drawbacks

  • Long charging time

5. Holy Stone HS700D

Holy Stone HS700D - Best Drone under 200 - ULTRAdvice.com

It is a value for money deal!

The HS700D from Holy Stone comes with a 1-Axis Gimbal for image stabilization.

It packs high-quality 1500KV brushless motors for agile movements. An impressive 2K HD Camera offers exceptional level of FPV experience.

Above features makes HS700D popular under this category of drones.

Specifications

  1. Flying Time: 22 Minutes
  2. Flying Range: 1000 meters
  3. FPV Transmission Range: 500-800 meters
  4. Image Stabilization: 1-Axis Gimbal
  5. RTH: Yes
  6. Battery: 2800 mAh

Other feature includes One Key Return, Waypoint Mode, Follow Me, Intelligent Geofence, Headless Mode, and more.

It is also one of our highly recommended drone for photography.

Benefits

  • Compact
  • Excellent flying time
  • 1-Axis Gimbal
  • FPV Compatible
  • Brushless motors
  • RTH (Return-to-Home)
  • 2K camera
  • GPS

Drawbacks

  • Long charging time

6. Holy Stone HS270

Holy Stone HS270 - Best Drone under 200 - ULTRAdvice.com

When it comes to compact and foldable drones the Holy Stone HS270 is out top choice on this list of drones under $200.

It is light-weight and perfectly portable. So, this drone is for people who are always on the move.

It equips 2.7K (3840×2160 resolution) camera with 120° wide-angle lens.

The Holy Stone HS270 drone offers impressive FPV Transmission range of 400 meters, which is not common in foldable drones at this price range.

Specifications

  1. Flying Time: 18 Minutes
  2. Flying Range: 600 meters
  3. FPV Transmission Range: 400 meters
  4. Image Stabilization: Altitude Hold
  5. RTH: Yes
  6. Battery: 7.4V, 350mAh

This drone’s additional features include Waypoint mode, Orbit Mode, Follow me, voice-recording feature, etc.

Benefits

  • Light-weight and compact
  • FPV compatible
  • Good flying time
  • RTH (Return-to-Home)
  • 2.7K camera
  • GPS

Drawbacks

  • Long charging time
  • Brushed motors

7. Holy Stone HS165

Holy Stone HS165 - Best Drone under 200 - ULTRAdvice.com

The HS165 from Holy Stone packs a big punch at the price of $119 only!

This compact and foldable drone is best fit for people on the go.

It offers flying time of 15 minutes. To increase this time, the Holy Stone is selling this drone with an extra battery at the price of $129.
Click here to check!

It has a camera of 2K HD resolution with 90° wide-angle lens. It capture high-quality images without blurry and jello effect.

Specifications

  1. Flying Time: 15 Minutes
  2. Flying Range: 300-400 meters
  3. FPV Transmission Range: 180-250 meters
  4. Image Stabilization: Altitude Hold
  5. RTH: Yes
  6. Battery: 7.4V, 880mAh

This drone is packed with additional features like Follow Me mode, Waypoint Mode, Circle Fly, 2-Speed Mode, One Key take-off and landing function, etc.

Benefits

  • Light-weight and compact
  • FPV compatible
  • RTH (Return-to-Home)
  • Comes with extra battery
  • Good flying time
  • 2K camera
  • Dual GPS

Drawbacks

  • Long charging time
  • Brushed motors
  • Can be a bit unresponsive

8. SNAPTAIN SP500

Snaptain SP500 - Best Drone under 200 - ULTRAdvice.com

The Snaptain SP500 is very identical but it is a bit costlier than Holy Stone HS165 (discussed above).

High cost reflects the remarkable camera quality. You will be able to capture cool and sharp images as well as videos with this drone.

The Snaptain features a 1080p camera with a 110° wide-angle lens and an electronic-based altitude hold image stabilization.

Specifications

  1. Flying Time: 15 Minutes
  2. Flying Range: 300 meters
  3. FPV Transmission Range: 220 meters
  4. Image Stabilization: Altitude Hold
  5. RTH: Yes
  6. Battery: 7.4V, 1000mAh

Additional features include Follow Me mode, Waypoint Mode, Gesture Control Mode, Circle Fly, 2-Speed Mode, One Key take-off and landing function, etc.

Benefits

  • Compact design
  • FPV compatible
  • Good flying time
  • Comes with extra battery
  • RTH (Return-to-Home)
  • 1080p Camera
  • GPS

Drawbacks

  • Long charging time
  • Brushed motors

9. Eachine E520S

Eachine E520S - Best Drone under 200 - ULTRAdvice.com

The Eachine E520S has a 4K resolution camera with 120° wide-angle lens.

It comes with a GPS and 6-Axis gyroscope for adding stability while hovering.

This drone has a flying time of 16 minutes, which is average at this price range. But, I will suggest you to have an extra battery to extend the flying time.

The Eachine is selling this drone with an extra battery as well.
Check it here!

Specifications

  1. Flying Time: 16 Minutes
  2. Flying Range: 300 meters
  3. FPV Transmission Range: 250 meters
  4. Image Stabilization: 6-Axis Gyroscope
  5. RTH: Yes
  6. Battery: 7.4V, 1200mAh

Other additional features include One Key Return, Waypoint Mode, Follow Me, Headless Mode, Orbit Mode, etc.

Overall this drone is perfect for the people on the move for photography.

Benefits

  • Compact design
  • FPV compatible
  • RTH (Return-to-Home)
  • Good flying time
  • Comes with an extra battery
  • 4K camera
  • GPS

Drawbacks

  • Long charging time

Conclusion

For aerial photography, we suggest you to go with Holy Stone HS700D or Eachine Ex4. They both are awesome!

An affordable drone like Holy Stone HS165 also offers excellent performance at it’s price.

If you are buying a drone for your kids then look no further and go for the cute little flying-machine, Altair 818 Hornet.

Finally, if you feel like I am missing any fantastic drone under $200 then don’t forget to comment below. I will look forward adding them to this list.

Rakesh Kurhade
Rakesh is a tech enthusiast, engineer, team leader and digital growth hacker. He is working for Robu.in (robotics e-commerce website) for the past 4+ years. His expertise includes research, reading, writing, thinking, planning, organizing and striving for perfection. He is passionate, hardworking and committed to plan and develop the brand Robu. In his free time, he writes articles at ULTRAdvice to help people find the answers to the questions that Google cannot answer. Contact him on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter.