How time flies and keeps flying! Like a drunk and wildly lumbering bear relentlessly careening forward in an endless quest for more mischief and trouble to get caught up in. Finally, though, our fav part of the year is come at last. Hurray!!! As per tradition, you are supposed to be of endless and bottomless good cheer, enjoy yourself to the fullest and empty your bank account. While also endeavoring to give your credit cards a heart attack by buying gifts for loved ones and yourself. After all, you deserve a massive reward for putting up with the endless crap the year threw at you, right? If you do get bitten by the buying/shopping bug and want some relief, I would advise against going to the doc. The only thing to do in such life-threatening cases is to let the ailment run wild and free in your veins and fill your abode to the ceiling with consumables, chewables, and eatables. And oh yes flyables.
No, I don’t mean jumbo or private jets. Just some plain old drones. Drones are now practical, mainstream, multi-various, multi-purpose, and heavily legit. Not to mention loads of fun, excitement, and adventure, while being in the right place at the right time with one assuredly guarantees your 10 seconds of fame. Should you get one? Absolutely. For what? Practically anything and everything, just name it! Can’t afford it? Then have Santa bring one for you, the more pricey, the better. That fat guy is certainly rich enough to afford to buy a planet all by himself!
Well, here are our top 10 drones that helped to make 2016 whirly awesome and deserve pride of place on your kitchen table.
1. DJI Phantom 4
The DJI Phantom 4 is so good that it’s on the lips of nearly everyone and sitting tight at the top of nearly every drone review published. It’s a big, bad and overly capable monster that never manages to disappoint. Despite its insane power and performance, it’s still usable by anyone, from your 80-year old novice grandma to a geeky 4-eyed teenager. Want to crank things way up? Just use the HDMI cable on the controller and connect it to FPV goggles to view live 4K feed guaranteed to pop your eyes out and put you straight on cloud 9. Use the camera too to shoot some slow-mo, bullet time sequences that shows off your bad-ass skills. And dive bomb the competition with its top speed of 45MPH.
DJI has always made exceptional drones. But this time they madly outdid even themselves. And we and the rest of the globe can’t stop hailing them for it.
2. DJI Inspire 1
The DJI Inspire 1 features prominently in my recurring alien wars nightmares. It comes carbon-fiber armored, big, totally menacing and deadly looking, and you have no trouble believing it was sent by Skynet to eliminate you because of your forthcoming role in the future resistance. In actuality though
The DJI Inspire 1 features prominently in my recurring alien wars nightmares. It comes carbon-fiber armored, big, totally menacing and deadly looking, and you have no trouble believing it was sent by Skynet to eliminate you because of your forthcoming role in the future resistance. In actuality though its quite as versatile as a double-headed Philips screwdriver, and as practical. We love that the 4K capable camera is user-replaceable and upgradeable. And can additionally be detached along with the gimbal for use in shooting footage on the ground rather than up in the wild blue yonder. Taking the perfect shot while in the air is a breeze too cos of the gimbal, as it is adjustable left, right, up and down ad infinitum as desired. Additionally up to 2 people can simultaneously use the drone: with one piloting and the other focusing on taking footage. Talk about division of labor!
The DJI Inspire 1 is uncompromisingly built for performance and almost manages to upstage the Phantom 4. Its versatile, astoundingly multi-purpose and has a look that never fails to get the pulse racing wildly.
3. DJI Mavic Pro
This cutie is the perfect combination of beauty + brawns well packaged in an astoundingly tiny form that you can slip into your pocket and take nearly anywhere. All without sacrificing an ounce of performance of its fatter rivals.. The camera is a 4K shooter that is gimbal stabilized for when the going gets rough up above. Speed is a max of 40 mph, range of control 7 km, and full obstacle avoidance is enabled. The Mavic is simply magic in 3D! Whoever said good things come only in big packages should go take a hike. Preferably while lugging a case of dumbbells up a mountain slope.
4. YUNEEC Typhoon H Pro
This was created for one purpose only: to slay the seemingly invincible DJI Phantom Dragon. It hasn’t quite managed that though, but certainly not for lack of trying. The Yuneec Typhoon packs nearly all the features of the Phantom 4 in a cheaper package that’s hard to convincingly resist. And unlike its bitter rival it is upgradeable and hence future-proof. Its tricky to fly though and definitely not for beginners, at least not those who don’t look forward in crashing their pricey acquisition a few seconds after purchase. The Yuneec Typhoon ticks all the right boxes, as well as a few more besides and is a particularly excellent choice if you want the best drone out there without also wanting to TKO your bank account.
5. DJI Phantom 3 Professional
If you are a beginner who wants a high-performance drone, that is easy to fly, stable in air, exceptionally responsive to commands and shoots 4K gimbal-stabilized eye-candy video, then you can’t do better than the DJI Phantom 3 Professional. Its sturdy too so you don’t have to worry too much about crashing it, while being kinda affordable. At least more than its more exotic brethren.
6. DJI Phantom 3 Advanced
This is the twin to the Phantom 3 Pro above, with all its features and gizmology. All except one of course- a 4K camera. But at least it’s cheaper, flies as well and takes great footage you have to see to believe. And even then you still might not believe!
7. DJI Phantom 3 Standard
This is the entry-model Phantom series for when you don’t feel like splashing all those cash on a whirly contraption that looks well capable of beheading chickens for sport. This one though sports an exceptionally capable gimbal-stabilized Panasonic 12 MP camera, so you won’t be stinting much on either quality or performance. While lacking some sensors and options of its pricier Phantom brothers, the Phantom 3 Standard is still an excellent choice for all, but most especially beginners getting ahold of a drone for the first time in their lives.
8. 3D ROBOTICS Solo
The 3D Robotics Solo comes packing any GoPro action camera of your choosing, with a whale-load of camera settings and customizations available to tinker with. So, no excuse for poor footage will be tolerated if you do splash out on it. If you are a camera junkie and want your footage with all the eye-candy lathered on, then go the Solo 3D route.
9. DJI Phantom 3 4K
This drone is essentially the same as the Phantom 3 Standard, but with the addition of a 4K capable video for when you do want footage in violently eye-popping color, clarity, and awesomeness. Want a cheap 4K capable drone that is particularly fab in action? This one got your back and helps save you some cash to purchase that Ferrari you long got your eyes on.
10. PARROT Bebop
What is extremely durable, cheap and an intuitive delight to use? Is it a spoon? Na, just a Parrot. Or more precisely a Parrot Bebop. Crash it all you want, cheap parts aplenty are awaiting. Control via connected smartphone is a thrill: just imagine you are driving a race car with your device and make the Parrot do tricks and beg for peanuts in air. The Parrot Bebop is endlessly fun, funky and fiercely exciting.