BEST PICK

Top RC Quadcopters: The Best Choices You Can Buy Today

RC quadcopter in action
Jack Brown
Written by Jack Brown

People all around the country have become interested in RC quadcopters in recent time. It’s all over how these impressive remote-controlled air vehicles can be used as drones to record videos and to take pictures from several feet above the ground. A simple camera can be easily mounted onto a quadcopter although the best models will already come with a camera on one’s body.

In addition, RC quadcopters are amazingly easy to pilot and use. The use of four small rotors on the corners of a quadcopter makes it easier for such a vehicle to be kept in the air and to be steered.

That is, the risk of over or understeering while piloting the quadcopter will be reduced substantially. This can especially work well if you are in windy conditions where it might be easy for some airborne items to be influenced by the weather.

You can certainly enjoy piloting one of these RC quadcopters in your area! You can get one of these to fly quite high; in fact, you can fly one at distances of up to 400 feet in the air, in accordance with laws for recreational drone use.

Even more, you can take photos of different things in your area or you can get birds-eye views of high-up places. This is especially ideal if you are trying to sell a property, if you want to look at a big parcel of land or if you are trying to keep records on how different physical spaces might look for cartography purposes.

JJRC quad for 2016

Of course, all quadcopters are made with different features that make each model unique in some way. Some of them do not come with cameras while others are made with very small bodies.

The propellers and blades on these can also vary, with many models offering different formats that are easy to handle to make it to where a quadcopter can be quickly moved from one spot to the next.

The best part of these quadcopters is that there are all sorts of great models for you to choose from. These options include some appealing choices that will add value to whatever you have as these are light in weight and easy to pilot. They can work from a variety of distances as well so you can keep a clear sense of control of one even if it is several meters away from you.

RC Quadcopters – The top five available now

Holy Stone HS170

The Holy Stone HS170 RC quadcopter is a solid blue and silver model that operates with a 2.4GHz wireless system. This ensures that the quadcopter can be easy to control without risking interference from other nearby electronic equipment.

This one in particular uses a 6-axis gyro stabilization system that allows for added control and support. The quadcopter can move in more directions and will be easier to pilot without worrying about whether it is moving too far or not by too much.

Holy Stone HS170

This quadcopter can run for about 6 to 10 minutes on a single charge and it only takes about 30 to 40 minutes for the battery to be fully charged. The 3.7V 350 mAh Li-ion battery can be charged through a standard USB port. The battery works long enough to where the potential for the motors and circuit board to heat up and become damaged will be reduced.

The entire quadcopter is only about half a pound in weight. This model does not come with a camera, but you can always consider adding one onto it by mounting or attaching it onto the bottom part of the quadcopter if desired. Professional help is generally required to when getting a camera added onto the bottom of the drone so it will not fall off while the copter is in motion.

If you think that this product could be useful for you, then you can check its price on Amazon.

Eachine H8C

The Eachine H8C quadcopter comes with its own 2-megapixel HD camera. This is located on one side of the quadcopter to create a clear shot of an area. The HD camera can even take photos if needed. The lens is also covered in a secure housing to ensure that the quadcopter will continue to take photos quite well without any distractions.

The 2.4GHz model uses a 6-axis setup to make it easier for you to move it around from one direction to the next. The simple controller uses a series of convenient buttons and sticks to help you move it around.

It also uses a small screen to help you see what you can do with the quadcopter. You can even use the controller to handle the camera and photo functions on the drone and to get its landing gear out and ready after you are done using it.

Eachine H8C

An indicator light is included on the controller. This will let you know when the drone is dangerously out of range or if the battery on it is running low, thus giving you time to get the drone to return back to you.

At eight ounces, the Eachine H8C uses 4 LED lights that don’t add much weight onto it. A USB charging cable is also used to get the unit running quickly. You can even use the screwdriver that comes with the quadcopter to assemble it. There are two replacement props on the model as well to help you keep it intact.

Like this amazing product? Then you can check its price on Amazon.

UDI RC U839

The lightweight body of the UDI RC U839 is surrounded by a series of borders on the ends to help with keeping the quadcopter in the air while protecting the individual props. This is all made with a size of about 0.6 ounces, thus making it one of the smallest quadcopters on the market.

This 4-channel 2.4GHz quadcopter can be flown right out of the box after charging its battery. It only takes about 40 minutes for the battery to be charged through a proper USB port. It will fly for about 5 to 7 minutes at a time after you are done charging it.

UDI RC U839

This 6-axis model is made with ABS plastic to keep it light in weight. The orange finish especially makes this model easy to see while in the air. The quad can be controlled for up to 30 meters at a time.

The model is also about 8.9 cm in size from each individual size while still being about 2.9 cm tall. 4 blades are also included alongside a prop remover tool, thus giving you more power over how you are maintaining your quadcopter. This model is ideal for those who are starting out with quadcopters and want something that is very small and still easy to move around and maintain.

If you think that this product could be useful for you, then you can purchase it on Amazon.

Wonder Chopper RC Stunt Drone Quadcopter

Those who are looking for a more agile quadcopter can use the Wonder Chopper RC Stunt Drone Quadcopter. This is a 2.4GHz 4-channel model that uses 3 blades on each of its propellers.

The propellers are also surrounded by a series of borders to ensure they will not get hit by anything in the event that the quadcopter accidentally flies into a walled surface. The 3 blades help to improve the overall thrust on the quadcopter so it can move faster in most environments.

Preparing Wonder Chopper RC Stunt Drone Quadcopter

The 6-axis design allows the quadcopter to make a variety of maneuvers. This can even work with flips and rotations. A separate HD camera can be mounted onto the bottom of the quadcopter if desired as well although it is best to avoid using any extreme stunt moves while a camera is affixed to the model.

This quadcopter, which does not need FAA registration, weighs about a pound and uses a 3.7V 300 mAh battery that will allow for about twelve minutes of flight time on a charge if two batteries are used. It takes about 60 minutes for the battery to be properly charged. One battery can be used for 6 minutes of flight time.

The controller does require 6 AA batteries for it to work. These batteries are included in the quadcopter package for the user’s convenience.

If you think that this product could be useful for you, then you can buy it here.

AKASO X5C

The fifth option to take a look at is the AKASO X5C. This has a 6-axis gyro quad-rotor that is capable of resisting wind conditions and offers more support for the user. It offers a 360-degree flip feature that can be used on the controller as well. Some plastic blade frames are also included on the sides of the quadcopter to quickly move the model around.

An HD camera is also included on the inside of its body. This is made with a slightly protruding casing feature on the middle base of the quadcopter. This camera can work with a microSD card to help the user record items and take pictures and then play them back later on from any device that can handle such a card.

AKASO X5C

A 3.7V 500 mAh battery is included alongside a USB port to help with charging it. The product is about one pound in weight and can fly for five to seven minutes after being fully charged. It also takes about 60 minutes for the unit to be fully charged.

Also, this can work at distances of up to 100 meters from the controller. The 2.4GHz system ensures that this will fly around well and will not bear with any interference from any other small craft located in an area.

Like this product? Then you can buy it on Amazon.

Who should buy a quadcopter?

A quadcopter is a great type of material that you can enjoy buying for your own needs. You should look such a device if you want to pilot something that is small and easy to handle. First of all, a quadcopter is clearly different from a drone in that it offers more control with 4 different rotors on the corners. It’s also much smaller than a typical drone.

If you’re photography passionate and you want to explore your hobby with aerial shots keep in mind that not all models are provided with a camera. Of course, some RC quadcopters will work with their own built-in cameras but this is not guaranteed on all models. So, to explore your hobby, you might have to mount a camera on the quad before taking it flying.

RC quad with camera for beginners

A quadcopter is a good option for kids as well. That’s because it is not overly complicated or otherwise difficult for a child to work with. It has a simplified control setup that is not too confusing and should be easy to follow. Beset of all, a quadcopter can be made with strong and sturdy materials to ensure that whatever you are ordering is safe and easy to use.

Amateur filmmakers could use a quadcopter that has a camera in it as well. This is perfect considering how a drone can gather images that are often difficult to capture elsewhere. Of course, this is for amateurs only as professional filmmakers will often have to use much more expensive items to help them with the job.

Possible uses of these drones

An RC quadcopter is clearly designed with recreational use in mind. It’s a simple type of machinery that you can enjoy working with when looking for something fun to play with when outside.

Most users want to learn how to pilot an RC aircraft so you can use it to train yourself as well. You’ll see how controls work, how wind conditions can impact your flight and so forth. This is perfect if you want to consider buying a drone someday but you need a little bit of extra practice with making it work.

RC quadcopter out of the box

Depending on the model you order, you might find a quadcopter with a built-in camera. You can use this for when you are trying to record things, or get birds-eye view of a plot or land for a future building project.

Maybe it can be used to get a look at something on the top of your house as well. Either way, the camera will make it easier for you to see things clearly but it’s only available on certain quadcopter models.

Things to understand before buying

As exciting as it can be for you to get into the world of RC quadcopters, you have to be careful when finding a good model. Every RC drone is different from one another and you need to ensure you can find a choice that is easy to pilot and won’t be too prohibitive to anything you want to do with it.

Good control

First, you have to look at the controller that you are getting before buying a quadcopter. A controller has to be easy to handle by design. A 6-axis controller is clearly easy to work with as well as one with individual throttle and elevation controls.

Drone uav control

The control system must also be suitable with regards to linking up to a proper connection. A great control system can be designed with a connection that entails a wireless link that works on a proper frequency and will not entail any dangerous interference getting in the way. When used properly, a connection will ensure that your model can be quickly up in the air and ready for anything.

Can you fly it now?

One thing you might notice in some RC quadcopters is that many of them are ready for you to fly right out of the box. Granted, you will have to charge up the battery and get some batteries for the controller but it’s still in a setup to where it could fly without having to assemble anything.

You may also find some BNF or Bind-and-Fly quadcopters. These RC models are all assembled but they don’t have controllers. A BNF model will have to be linked to a separate controller that works on the same frequency as the quadcopter’s receiver. That’s why, before purchase, you should check the types of controllers compatible with the quad.

Build your own drone kit

An ARF or Almost Ready-to-Fly model is another option. This type of model does not come with a transmitter or receiver and you will have to assemble a part of it on your own. Sometimes the battery or the motors might not be included. Every manufacturer has its own standards on what constitutes an ARF model so you should check with them before purchase.

They vary in value

The cost associated with getting an RC quadcopter can vary depending on what you choose. Many basic models are available for less than $100 right now. However, you will certainly have to pay more if you want to get a quadcopter that can fly further and work with a larger battery.

It will cost even more to get a choice that features its own HD camera. It never hurts to go comparison shopping around different stores or websites to get a good idea of what the cost for a quality RC quadcopter might be when based on what you want out of it.

They vary in value

Of course, many RC quadcopters are much less expensive than what you might find in a drone. Drones typically cost hundreds upon hundreds of dollars.

On a related note, you might have to get separate batteries, controllers and chargers for your unit. No matter what you order, you need to make sure it is an easy to maintain choice and that you can afford the extra items that you might have to get over time.

Regardless of the type of RC quad you choose, the cost will expand in time. You’ll need replacement parts, protection frames, maybe you’ll even want to tweak it around a little bit. All these, will add value to your quad and will increase its cost in time.

How can you land it?

The landing gear that comes with an RC quadcopter needs to be considered carefully before buying one. The landing gear has is the one that takes over the impact when the quad hits the ground. That is, it will allow the quadcopter to securely get on the ground without worrying about it potentially breaking apart or wearing out in any manner.

Landed RC quadcopter

The landing gear is usually fixed and should be placed below the main body of the quadcopter. Also, you have to make sure that it doesn’t get in the he way of the camera (provided that the quadcopter actually has a camera).

What is it made of?

If you want your RC quad to hold longer, you have to look for a model made with strong materials. Plastic items are used by most manufacturers because these are light in weight and easy to prepare. However, more expensive models gave up on plastic and support a carbon fiber of fiberglass chassis. This makes the quad durable and shock resistant.

Frame buying guide

Most metal items are made out of aluminum to maintain the entire quad lightweight and easy to control in the air.

FAA standards

The FAA has a number of rules relating to the use of RC quadcopters that you need to follow. These are rules that have been established with the intention of making sure that users do not interfere with other items that may be in the air.

In particular, you have to avoid flying one of these quadcopters over 400 feet in the air. Also, you must make sure your unit is in your line of vision at all times while watching it move around.

The FAA also states that you should avoid flying your quadcopter during conditions that might not be favorable. These include conditions where it is raining or even when the winds are rather heavy.

This is out of the concern over how some conditions for quadcopter use may be dangerous, what with such a model being so light in weight. This is a standard that is used for your own safety and should not be ignored when it comes to flying a drone.

Flying drones in city

You cannot use your quadcopter for surveillance purposes or for when you are going to take pictures of other people. However, you can do this if you have the permission of someone to use your quadcopter for such purposes. You have to be rather careful though as it can be easy to misconstrue some rules with regards to whether or not it is fine for you to actually fly a quadcopter.

A good thing about most quadcopters is that they are not items that you need to get an FAA license for in order to use. In other words, you should be in the clear from a legal standpoint to use one. Just be sure that you are careful when operating it so you do not get into any trouble while doing so.

Not sure what model to buy?

You can certainly buy a great quadcopter for your personal use but you have to be careful when choosing a model that is right for you. As you have seen from the five models that were highlighted earlier, there are plenty of great options that will certainly fit in perfectly with your demands for a good RC unit.

Let’s take a look at a few of the pros and cons that you need to see when looking for an interesting model.

Pros:

  • An RC quadcopter is a very lightweight option.
  • It doesn’t take much time for you to get the battery on one of these charged.
  • You will quickly get control of this without having to worry about interference from other items thanks to the frequencies and other features used to make it work properly.

Cons:

  • The battery on a typical model can only work for about 5 to 10 minutes at a time depending on the model you order.
  • You cannot get one of these models to go too far away from your controller or else it will be out of range.
  • One of these models won’t go as quickly as many other larger models can. This is especially the case for large drones with bigger motors.

Be sure to contact us if you need help with finding something that is appealing and suitable for your flying needs. A great RC quadcopter can be fun to pilot but it’s important to look carefully to see what is right for your overall flying needs.

About the author
Jack Brown
Jack Brown

Jack is the Chief Pilot at MyDroneLab.com bringing experience, expertise and knowledge in this quite new industry. He is a graduate of the Drone/UAV Pilot Training Certificate program and member of the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International. Besides having all the necessary technical knowledge when it comes to drones, Jack and his team love to spend the time outside by the ocean, working on new features and teaching others how to pilot these amazing and exciting new robots.

  • Marco Medina

    I would recommend female beginners to buy Eachine H8C. This little guy is cheap, fast, solid, with a great sound, lights, and user-friendly controller. Flying time is also impressive for such type of drones: almost 20 minutes.

  • Justin Banks

    I agree with everything about Holy Stone HS170. Just wanted to add, that it has a good prop guards, which allows you to make some tricks even indoors.

  • Thanks for sharing your feedback, Justin.

  • Thanks for the recommendation Marco.

  • Elliot Giles

    My favourite is The Eachine H8C quadcopter.For the price, this thing is a blast! It is very easy to fly and would be great if you are just learning how to fly helis, but still fun for those that have been around the block as well and just want to try a quad out.

    • It so happens that I have this little one in my collection 🙂 This is really an amazing little drone for some $12, at least I payed it that much, but had hours of fun with it and it is practically indestructible!

  • Marvin St. James

    The Holy Stone HS170 is an awesome quad. It’s very snappy, responsive and stable. You can conveniently choose from three speed levels. This quad is fast because it doesn’t carry any camera. Great range too. This is one of the best toy-grade flyers in the market today.

  • Jack Brown

    I agree, really a nice drone and doesn’t cost a leg 🙂 Great for beginners!

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