Drones with cameras are meanwhile both user-friendly and affordable, which leads to increasing demands on the market. The extremely high quality technology and flight control enables learning to fly quickly – everybody can do it, everybody wants to. DJI is an absolute hegemon in the industry, dominating the market primarily with their Mavic production line. In our top Mavic alternatives list, we therefore show you which drones models are particularly good clones of Mavic Pro and Air models. In case you want to learn more about DJI Mavic alternatives, check out the guide from Dronepedia’s Rene Peters by clicking here.
6 Buying Criteria For Camera Drones
First of all it is necessary to narrow down your needs, demands and budget for the drone.
When looking for a camera drone, the following criteria should be considered:
- Camera: What resolution and quality does it offer for photos and videos?
- Image stabilization: Should the drone also fly in windy conditions and with an ideal technical flight stabilization system (GPS)?
- Flight time: What is the battery life?
- Battery range: What is the possible flight distance?
- Accessories: How well do remote control and charger work? What spare parts are available?
- Purchase price: What is your budget for the drone and what price point is justified for the drone you are interested in?
Top 5 Mavic Alternatives
DJI Phantom 4 Advanced
The camera drone DJI Phantom 4 Advanced is relatively heavy at 1,368 grams, but it manages to fly for about 30 minutes. The camera is equipped with a high-quality 20-megapixel sensor and a bit rate of about 100 Mbps. The highlight of the drone is certainly the 1-inch CMOS image sensor: the 4k resolution in video mode allows up to 60 frames per second.
3D obstacle sensors and the Vision Positioning System ensure a smooth flight with stable take-offs and landings. Five vision sensors ensure safety and allow intelligent flight modes such as the Draw flight mode: The DJI Phantom automatically moves along recorded waypoints. This camera drone can also be controlled via smartphone and controller.
Unfortunately, the DJI Phantom 4 Advanced Drone is currently not available. A good alternative is the Snaptain A15H drone with HD camera.
Without camera but with GoPro-compatible gimbal: Yuneec’s Q500
The Q500 series from Yuneec is available in several versions, which differ in terms of their camera and of course the price point. The cheapest version for a little less than 500 Euros is the Q500 without camera – ideal for all GoPro owners. These can put their action cam into the camera mount on this drone and film from the air. The copter can stay in the air for about 25 minutes and has a range of more than one kilometer.
DJI Phantom 4 Professional
In the DJI Phantom 4 Professional model, the drone’s camera also has a 20 megapixel sensor and 1-inch CMOS image sensor. By and large, the features are the same as on the DJI Phantom 4 Advanced: For sharp images, the 4K resolution with up to 60 frames per second is available in video mode. Obstacle detection is possible in five directions. Especially the powerful anti-collision system has been optimized: there are extended infrared sensors. In terms of control, the 5.5-inch display serves as a replacement for the smartphone, although the camera drone can also be controlled with a smartphone and controller.
If you are considering getting a quality camera drone, the Phantom 4 Professional offers increased safety thanks to the optimized anti-collision system.
Unfortunately, the DJI Phantom 4 Professional drone is currently not available. The Euopat drone offers a good alternative.
The DJI Spark model from DJI is a miniature camera drone. It is not an FPV racer, but is perfectly suited for selfies – thanks to its built-in camera, smartphone control and innovative flight and camera modes, you can make the most beautiful “dronies” (the term for drone selfies). A 12 megapixel camera with 2-axis compensation system shoots sharp pictures and takes 30 frames per second in video mode at 1080p.
The drone from DJI has a range of 80 meters in width and 50 meters in height with a smartphone or 2,000 meters with a flight controller. About 16 minutes of flight time are possible with the 1,480 mAh strong 3S battery. The special sensor technology of the DJI Spark provides extensive safety and stability. This drone can also be easily controlled either with a smartphone or remote controller.
Currently not available. Good alternative is the Mavic Mini.
DJI Phantom 3 Standard
Another model in the Phantom 3 series is the DJI Phantom 3 Standard. This DJI Phantom drone is very easy to use thanks to its intuitive flight system. Once the battery is empty, recharging takes only about 2 hours. While flying, the drone can be tracked by live HD image control, and there is also a Follow Me function.
The downward-facing 3D cameras measure the ground distance during low flight, thus enabling particularly stable take-off and landing procedures. With 2.7k HD video quality and an image resolution of 12 megapixels, the camera’s photo modes are well within the average range. The 3 standard camera drone is controlled via smartphone or controller.
Currently the DJI Phantom 3 Standard Drone is not available. A good alternative is the EACHINE E520 drone with a 4k HD camera.
Currently not available.
Conclusion: Best DJI Mavic alternative
In our detailed comparison of top Mavic Pro alternatives, we focused especially on the quality of the image recordings and image stabilization. As the leading manufacturer in the field of drones, DJI clearly impresses with its drones models, which is also shown by the best list. Which model you choose depends on your priorities: What must the drone be capable of and how much money is at your disposal?