3 Best GoPro Drones Besides Karma
While you wait for the GoPro Karma Drone to be unveiled, here are three of our favorite drones that work well with GoPro cameras.
All signs point to GoPro finally unveiling its Karma Drone on Monday, Sept. 19.
We don’t know too much about the GoPro Karma Drone, but teaser videos the company has released suggest the GoPro Karma Drone is smaller than its competitors, has a gimbal for image stabilization and can be maneuvered in tight spaces.
GoPro may use the Karma unveiling to also launch its Hero 5 action camera and possibly a handheld gimbal accessory.
Analysts expect the GoPro Karma Drone to cost more than $500 without a camera, bringing the price with a GoPro camera $900 to $1,000, adding that more than 100,000 of these could be sold during the holiday season.
The GoPro Karma will certainly generate interest, but drones that work with GoPro cameras are nothing new. Drone manufacturers know how popular GoPro cameras are, so they’ve many drones with the GoPro in mind.
So while you wait for the GoPro Karma Drone to be officially unveiled, here are three of our favorite drones that work well with GoPro cameras. Is your favorite option not on the list? Create your free account with Robotics Trends and share your go-to GoPro drone in the comments.
Walkera QR X350
The $350 Walkera QR X350 is a step up from an entry-level drone for GoPro cameras, but it has the hardware to back up its higher price. This quadcopter sports some pretty solid features that not only complement its slick design, but gets you more use and flight time as well.
At a fairly low weight of six pounds, the Walkera has several automatic features that benefit newcomers and add ease of use for enthusiasts. Its automatic GPS system allows it to adjust on the go, which can be helpful when trying to maintain stability at higher altitudes. It also has a failsafe “go home” option that lets the drone know when to land. It’s also capable of reaching about 25 minutes of flight time, though this is without any additional attachments.
Since GoPro cameras aren’t too heavy, a hobbyist can expect to get extensive footage or photos. The GPS adjustments assures that what you capture is steady and without blur or noise.
One last thing to note, make sure you look for the variant that comes included with radio transmitter and properly included features, as purchase tiers add in/leave out based on the price. With that in mind, the Walkera QR X350 is a great first choice for GoPro use.
DJI Phantom 2
The $500 DJI Phantom 2 was designed with a GoPro in mind, coming with an attached gimbal that allows for easy installation of your GoPro. It’s a great upgrade from its predecessor and operates for better flying times.
The quadcopter design helps it maintain stability, a wanted feature when looking to reach higher altitudes. It can also reach impressive flight times of around 20-25 minutes.
The 3-axis gimbal means a user can capture smooth, high-quality video regardless of the direction they fly in. It’s also easy to set up and fly, so it’s a great GoPro drone for those who might be interested in the hobby but don’t have a handle on more complex controls.
If you’re specifically looking to use drones for photo/video capture, the Phantom 2 is definitely a great choice.
3D Robotics Solo
The last on our list is the 3DR Solo. Note that you’ll need a gimbal to install your GoPro, so pricing may vary. With an HDMI port and push-button control, you’ve got nice compatibility and ease of use for both newcomers and veteran hobbyists.
The high-quality photo capture is managed by the Solo’s on-board 1GHz computers, allowing it to take “smart photos” that adjust for clarity and quality on the fly. It boasts the ability to wirelessly stream HD video to a mobile device up to a mile, using a compatible iOS/Android app for users. It also touts a revolutionary “video game” controller for an easier way to control the Solo’s flight path.
The Solo has four photo modes - selfie, follow-me, orbit, cable cam - that allow for a unique spin on how to take your video/photos.
Out of the three, this one, while a bit pricey, sports specific features with a GoPro or similar camera in mind. If you’ve been thinking of getting a drone with video capture in mind, the 3DR Solo is an ideal pick.