Today's video will not have an epic intro or fancy B-roll throughout because I am doing a different type of video today. It is a sit-down-and-talk type of video where I discuss a topic that is interesting to me, and I was recently asked about. The question I was asked was, “What is your perfect drone?”
As we all know, we live in a world where there are no perfect products, especially in tech and drones. In general, we are quite unrealistic in our goals and desires to get that perfect product with all the features that could be challenging to implement in a single drone without any significant sacrifices. However, that doesn't mean we cannot dream, right?
So, in today's video, I will share my personal features of the perfect drone for my needs. I'll be very happy if I can see yours down in the comment section below because it would make for a great discussion. It could also be beneficial for some companies that are watching my videos to take notes and see what consumers really care about.
Perfect Drone Video
I was surprised when I recently saw a poll, and many people voted in that poll, saying that the most important feature of a drone is the flight time. I would have never guessed that it's the number one thing people care about the most. For me, it's not that important, but obviously, for many other people, it is a very important feature. So, let me know what your perfect features in a drone are down below, and I would love to have an interesting discussion in the comments.
The camera on my perfect drone
I'm starting out with my personal number one, of course, the camera. This video strictly focuses on camera drones because if we focus on FPV as well, it gets really, really hard to combine all the information, all the features, and all the things that I could say, and it would be a topic for another video.
The camera is the number one feature that I'm always focused on. For me, when it comes to the perfect camera setup, it has to be something simple. By “simple,” I don't mean limited features; I mean usability as the top priority. I don't want a drone with interchangeable lenses, for example. I prefer a setup with everything on board, ready to go, so you don't miss out on capturing the moment as it happens.
There are many occasions when a specific feature could be beneficial for a particular scenario, but by the time you set it up, you've already missed the moment, and it's too late. For me, a camera setup focusing on usability as the number one priority would be beneficial. Perhaps a camera with three lenses of different focal lengths would be ideal, so you can easily swap between them and achieve different looks without the need for interchangeable lenses.
5K or 6K video resolution
As for resolution, something along the lines of 5K or 6K would be suitable, as 4K is no longer the standard. A higher resolution allows for cropping without losing detail. If 6K were the standard, I would be delighted, although 5K would still suffice. Having more resolution gives you more flexibility to zoom in and out and adjust the shot's depth as needed.
When it comes to frame rates, 4K at 120 frames per second is common nowadays, but I would be thrilled to see 4K at 240 frames per second for that smooth, buttery-looking footage. It's challenging to say that word sometimes, but you get what I mean: buttery smooth footage in 240 frames per second would be ideal.
Continuing on the topic of camera capabilities, I would be delighted to have 12-bit log footage in that perfect drone, so I can push the colors as much as I want without worrying about breaking the image. Nowadays, even the standard color profiles on newer drones are great; I just prefer strong log capabilities for confidence in the post-processing stage.
The perfect drone would fly over one hour
Now, when it comes to flight time, as I mentioned earlier, this isn't a topic that concerns me too much currently. We are already seeing some drones with 45-plus minutes of flight time, so nothing will make me go crazy about flight time. If it's 60 minutes or more, that would be great, but it's not mandatory to have such a long battery life.
However, I must admit that if we have a flight time of more than one hour with just one battery, in most scenarios, you can get away with just one battery, so you will be covered wherever you go. With 60 minutes of flight time, if you know what you're doing, you can gather so much usable footage that you probably won't need a second battery.
Lightweight and portable
Obviously, the drone has to be lightweight and portable, preferably very compact and foldable, so you can take it with you anywhere you go. Again, like I said, the perfect drone is the one that can be with you so you don't miss the moment. If it's a big, heavy drone that's hard to set up with large propellers and not easy to carry around, you probably won't take it with you in most situations. That's the case for me; I've been in so many instances where I've missed out on some great potential shots because I didn't have my drone with me. Portability is key.
I would prefer a small drone, perhaps not as small as the Mini 3 or Mini 3 Pro; something a little bigger would be more ideal for me. While these smaller drones are great and super portable, they aren't the best when it comes to flying in strong winds, which leads to my next point: having confidence in your drone. To be honest, those bigger drones cope much better with strong winds than smaller models like the Mavic Mini 3 and other similar drones. That confidence in the drone is also important for me.
Strong wind resistance
I recall an instance when I flew my Mavic 2 Pro in near-hurricane winds, and the footage was rock-solid. It would be impossible to tell it was taken on a windy day because the footage was so smooth. Although the drone struggled to stay level, I had confidence it could cope with the winds. So, there should be a good balance between weight, portability, and a smaller form factor – but not too small, so it can still perform well in the air even at higher altitudes.
The perfect drone would be waterproof!
The next thing I would love to see in the perfect drone is 100% waterproofing. By that, I don't mean turning on the drone and throwing it in the pool to record with it; that's not what I mean. However, in some scenarios, I would love to shoot in heavy rain or capture a big snowfall with large snowflakes falling. It would be great not to worry about potentially damaging the motors if water drops were to fall into them. I would love to have that feature.
I know some people might counter me right away by saying, “Yes, but you will see raindrops on the front lens of your camera.” In a perfect world, I would love to have a water-repellent coating on the lens, so it doesn't stay on the lens and just drips away.
We've seen that on newer GoPros, which have that coating on their lens cover, so I know it's possible. It would be great to be confident in the drone even when it's raining heavily, and you want to capture that moody environment and feeling.
In some scenarios, at least, using water to your advantage for photography could make a difference, and I would love to have that aerial perspective with a mainstream consumer drone that we can use in various situations.
The perfect drone would be very quiet
The next thing is that the drone has to be very quiet (The Zipline 2 is very quiet!). Nowadays, drones are getting quieter, so we are heading in the right direction when it comes to sound and noise from drones. It isn't that big of a deal currently, but it can always get better. I would love to have a drone so inconspicuous that nobody cares about it being in the air. That's not to be used in the wrong way, but sometimes it draws too much attention, and you don't want that. So, having a drone that is super quiet would be even better for me.
AI and Intelligent Flight Modes
Now, when it comes to AI and intelligent flight modes, this is where it gets really interesting, as technology is progressing so quickly, and we're seeing amazing features from various drone manufacturers being implemented in their products. I am excited about the possibilities, but it's becoming easier and easier to achieve those incredible shots without doing anything. Even though I'm a fan of the technology, I'm not a huge fan of the drone working instead of me.
Manual shooting of aerial photos and footage
I prefer to shoot my shots manually, and I like to do my orbits and other movements myself with my hands, so I know I'm the one responsible for the shot. Otherwise, it's just too polished and too easy, I would say. So, it's not ideal for me to take advantage of all these modes sometimes because I don't feel like I took the shot; it's just the drone that took the shot, and I was there observing while the drone was recording, if that makes sense. I'm excited and interested to see where technology goes, but that's not something high on my list of features I want to see because I prefer to invest in my own flying and not rely on the drone.
Tracking and obstacle avoidance
But when it comes to tracking, for example, of course, if I want to be tracked by the drone, I would love to have 100% confidence in the drone, knowing that it can go through obstacles, over them, under them, and still track me without crashing. We've seen many scary situations already, but we've also seen significant progress in recent years, with tracking becoming much better. To be honest, I'm a simple guy; if the camera on a drone is good, then everything else is secondary because those are small things I can compromise with to enjoy the final result, which is going to be worth it.
What features are in your Perfect Drone?
That's just my personal preference. I would really love to hear back from you guys. Please share everything that you feel could be important for you in your perfect drone. I would really love to hear back from you in the comment section below and hopefully form a nice discussion where we can talk about all the things that matter to us when we talk about the perfect drone.
That's pretty much it, guys. I know it's a different type of video, and it probably won't get a lot of views or anything like that, but I don't care. It's just something that I wanted to put out there, talk to you directly, hopefully, get some feedback from you, and have a nice discussion. With that being said, I want to thank you if you're still watching by this time. Drop a like, and subscribe if you want to see more videos like this one or most of my regular videos – they are coming as well. I'll see you in the next one very soon. Ciao!
Get your Part 107 Certificate
Pass the test and take to the skies with the Pilot Institute. We have helped thousands of people become airplane and commercial drone pilots. Our courses are designed by industry experts to help you pass FAA tests and achieve your dreams.
Copyright © DroneXL.co 2023. All rights reserved. The content, images, and intellectual property on this website are protected by copyright law. Reproduction or distribution of any material without prior written permission from DroneXL.co is strictly prohibited. For permissions and inquiries, please contact us here.
FTC: DroneXL.co is an Amazon Associate and uses affiliate links that can generate income from qualifying purchases. We do not sell, share, rent out, or spam your email.