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Best Beginner Drones for Video

Having a drone to record videos is a fantastic choice if you’re a content creator, film for social media, create professional videos, etc.

If you’re new to drones, you need a beginner-friendly drone capable of taking great videos.

What are the best beginner drones for video?

The DJI Air 2S is the best beginner drone for recording amazing videos. At the same time, we have the DJI Mavic 3 Pro on the high end of the cost spectrum as a consumer drone, and the DJI Mini 3 Pro, Autel EVO Nano Plus, DJI Avata, and DJI FPV are also excellent choices

In this guide, I’ll share everything you need to know about these drones, including why they’re our top picks and what to look for in a beginner drone for video.

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1. DJI Air 2S

DJI Air 2S
$999.00 $949.00

DJI Air 2S has the ability to perceive its environment in four directions: up, down, forward, and backward, allowing it to actively avoid obstacles, even in complex scenarios and at high speeds.

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02/26/2024 03:46 pm GMT

The DJI Air 2S is our top pick due to its large sensor and the ability of the drone to film beyond 4K, with a fantastic dynamic range and video quality. 

Weight595 g
Flight TimeMax 31 mins
Camera Gimbal3-axis mechanical gimbal
CMOS Size1-inch CMOS
Camera Aperturef/2.8
Video Resolution5.4k at 30 fps
4k at 60 fps
2.7k at 60 fps
FHD at 120 fps
Codecs & Video Format.mp4 and .mov
H.264/MPEG-4 AVC 
H.265/HEVC
Does it support ND filters?Yes
Photo Resolution20 megapixels

✅ Pros

  • The largest camera sensor with fantastic filming capabilities in its price range
  • Can film in 5.4k
  • It comes with four direction avoidance sensors (forward, backward, downward, and upward)
  • It has a follow-me mode and many intelligent features
  • It can stay in the air for a long time
  • It has a good flight performance, and you can obtain smooth footage with the help of a three-axis mechanical gimbal
  • Good wind resistance

❌ Cons

  • It’s an older drone
  • It doesn’t have side sensors
  • You can’t film beyond 30 frames per second in 5.4k

The DJI Air 2S is and remains one of the most underrated drones capable of taking great videos even under harsh circumstances, such as high winds.

The videos will be stabilized due to the drone’s three-axis mechanical gimbal.

Moreover, the Air 2S has a fantastic dynamic range, can film in D-Log profile for better post-processing, and its price range still remains under $1k.

2. DJI Mavic 3 Pro

DJI Mavic 3 Pro
$2,199.00

Flagship Triple-Camera Drone with 4/3 CMOS Hasselblad Camera, 43-Min Flight Time, and 15km HD Video Transmission, for pro aerial photography.

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02/27/2024 03:16 am GMT

On the high end of the consumer drone spectrum, we have the Mavic 3 Pro, one of the newest DJI drones and among the best beginner drones that can record unique types of video.

Weight958 g
Flight TimeMax 43 mins
Camera Gimbal3-axis mechanical gimbal
CMOS SizeHasselblad: 4/3-inch CMOS
Medium Tele: 1/1.3-inch CMOS
Tele Camera: 1/2-inch CMOS
Camera ApertureHasselblad: f/2.8-f/11
Medium Tele: f/2.8
Tele Camera: f/3.4
Video ResolutionHasselblad: 
5.1k at 50fps
4k at 120fps
2.7k at 120fps
FHD at 200fps
Medium Tele:
4k at 60fps
FHD at 60fps
Tele Camera:
4k at 60fps
FHD at 60fps
Codecs & Video FormatApple ProRes 422 (plus HQ&LT), on Cine version
.mp4 and .mov with H.264/H.265
Does it support ND filters?Yes
Photo ResolutionHasselblad: 20 megapixels
Medium Tele: 12 or 48 megapixels
Tele Camera: 12 megapixels

✅ Pros

  • It comes with three exceptional cameras capable of recording up to 28x magnification
  • The Hasselblad camera has the largest camera sensor found in a consumer drone 
  • The dynamic range of the Hasselblad is absolutely fantastic
  • The cine version is for advanced professional filmmakers capable of recording in ProRes at 3.7Gbps
  • It has an omnidirectional sensing system capable of detecting and avoiding collisions from any side and angle
  • Despite its designation, the Mavic 3 Pro is one of the best beginner drones you can find because of all the safety features and intelligent functions
  • It has advanced return-to-home and unique intelligent functions to help a beginner obtain outstanding videos
  • Can fly for a very long time
  • It’s compatible with DJI RC Pro

❌ Cons

  • The starting price point is high
  • This drone is relatively heavy, close to 1 kilogram
  • It can be intimidating to fly this drone as a beginner

The most significant advantage of the DJI Mavic 3 Pro is that it comes with three cameras and can zoom up to 28x.

This type of zoom cannot be found outside the Mavic line in any consumer drone. It’s handy for recording wildlife and legally staying far from any landmarks while capturing awesome videos.

The Hasselblad camera’s dynamic range and video capability cannot be compared with any of the consumer drones on the market.

Please keep in mind that although it has a high price point, the Mavic 3 Pro is a professional drone capable of capturing professional-level videos. 

This is also one of the most advanced beginner drones with omnidirectional anti-collision sensors, advanced intelligent features, return to home, etc. 

3. DJI Mini 3 Pro

DJI Mini 3 Pro (DJI RC)
$909.00 $729.00

Lightweight and Foldable Camera Drone

  • 4K/60fps Video
  • 48MP Photo
  • 34-min Flight Time
  • Tri-Directional Obstacle Sensing, Integrated RC and screen
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02/27/2024 03:21 am GMT

The DJI Mini 3 Pro is one of the most known and loved consumer drones of all time, ideal for beginners to professionals and capable of recording great videos while remaining budget-friendly.

Weight249 g
Flight Time34 mins with the Intelligent Battery
47 mins with Intelligent Battery Plus
Camera Gimbal3-axis mechanical gimbal
CMOS Size1/2.3-inch CMOS
Camera Aperturef/1.7
Video Resolution4k, 2.7k, and FHD at 60 frames per second
Slow-Motion FHD at 120 frames per second
Codecs & Video FormatMP4/MOV (H.264/H.265); D-Cinelike
Does it support ND filters?Yes
Photo Resolution12 or 48 megapixels

✅ Pros

  • It’s a sub-250-gram drone that will allow you to fly and take videos in places where other drones may not be able to legally because of relaxed drone laws (always check your country’s drone laws)
  • It’s lightweight, portable, and a fantastic choice to travel with
  • Can record up to 4k at 60 frames per second
  • Excellent photography capabilities
  • Comes with three-directional avoidance sensors
  • It can fly for a while with the Intelligent Battery, but a lot longer with the Intelligent Battery Plus
  • It’s an affordable, small, beginner-friendly drone
  • It comes with a three-axis mechanical gimbal for stabilized video
  • Despite its small size, it can resist wind
  • It has a follow-me mode, Active Track, and several intelligent features
  • It’s compatible with DJI RC 

❌ Cons

  • It does not have side and upward sensors

The DJI Mini 3 Pro is a drone we often talk here on Droneblog because it’s one of the best drones you can buy for the price and is suitable for almost all types of drone pilots, from beginners to experts.

This drone can film in D-Cinelike, and the video results can be further post-processed in almost any video editor

I want to share with you a recording highlighting the quality of the DJI Mini 3 Pro:

4. Autel EVO Nano Plus

Autel EVO Nano Plus (Premium Bundle)
$2,099.00

249g Mini Professional Drone with 4K RYYB HDR Camera, 50 MP Photos, 1/1.28" CMOS, 3-Way Obstacle Avoidance and more.

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02/25/2024 11:42 pm GMT

The Autel Evo Nano Plus is a fantastic choice to capture videos in a resolution of up to 4K with the help of the RYYB unique technology, where the videos are exceedingly good in low-light situations.

Weight249 g
Flight TimeMax 28 mins
Camera Gimbal3-axis mechanical gimbal
CMOS Size1/1.28-inch CMOS
Camera Aperturef/1.9
Video Resolution4k and 2.7k at 30 frames per second and FHD at 60 frames per second
Codecs & Video Format.mp4 and .mov
Does it support ND filters?Yes
Photo Resolution50 megapixels

✅ Pros

  • It can fly for a decent amount of time
  • It has a relatively large sensor and can capture a wide dynamic range
  • Large camera aperture
  • It’s lightweight and portable and may benefit from relaxed drone laws
  • It’s available as part of a bundle
  • It’s a beginner-friendly drone
  • It comes with Dynamic Track 2.1 and advanced autonomous functions
  • It has a dual autofocus system (PDAF + CDAF)
  • It has three-way anti-collision sensors (forward, backward, and downward)
  • Extraordinary photography resolution

❌ Cons

  • Can’t film in 60 fps in 4k or 2.7k
  • The drone struggles to use the follow-me mode in tight spaces

Do you want a bundle with everything you need to stay in the air for as long as possible at a reasonable price? The Autel EVO Nano Plus is what you’re looking for.

The RYYB filter allows the camera sensor to capture up to 40 percent more light, which is fantastic for low-light filming without the need to increase the ISO and induce image noise.

5. DJI Avata

Best FPV drone for beginners
DJI Avata Pro-View Combo (DJI RC Motion 2)
$1,428.00 $1,299.00

DJI Goggles 2 and DJI RC Motion 2 Controller provide an immersive sensory experience with intuitive control via hand and head movements.

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02/27/2024 04:26 am GMT
DJI FPV Remote Controller 2
$199.00 $189.80
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02/26/2024 12:22 pm GMT

To create unique cinematic content outside of what standard GPS drones are capable of, we must look at FPV drones.

The DJI Avata is the best beginner FPV drone for capturing memorable videos because it’s a Cinewhoop-style drone with duct guards.

It’s fantastic to fly at slow speeds, near objects and people, indoors, and in many spaces where other drones cannot fly.

Weight410 g
Flight TimeMax 18 mins
Camera GimbalSingle axis (tilt)
CMOS Size1/1.7-inch CMOS
Camera Aperturef/2.8
Video Resolution4k at 60 frames per second 
2.7k and FHD at 120 frames per second
Codecs & Video Format.mp4
supports D-Cinelike
Does it support ND filters?Yes
Photo Resolution4000×3000 JPEG single shot

✅ Pros

  • You can fly in Manual (acro) mode and capture unique videos
  • It’s the best FPV beginner drone and the easiest to fly with
  • A safe drone to fly in most places where no other drones can
  • You can capture FPV videos at slow or fast speeds
  • It has a very long battery life for an FPV drone
  • It’s simple to set up and use compared to other FPV drones
  • The camera is far superior to any FPV drone, as it can film in 4k at 60 frames per second or reach 120 fps at 2.7k
  • The drone is compatible with several ND filters
  • It offers you an immersive experience flying FPV, even for the first time
  • It has emergency stop features, a return to home function, and is able to hover
  • You can can fly it with the Motion Controller
  • It has fantastic long-range transmission

❌ Cons

  • It requires skill and training in simulators to fly it manually
  • The starting price is high for a first FPV drone (which includes DJI Goggles 2 and DJI FPV Remote Controller 2), but you can acquire only the drone if you have the DJI FPV kit
  • Does not have any avoidance sensors nor intelligent functions
  • The remote controller has to be acquired separately, as there is no kit that includes the remote controller, only the motion controller

If you’re a nature lover looking to capture videos in forests with many obstacles, the DJI Avata is the only choice for safe flights.

It can fly indoors and outdoors at slow speeds in Normal, Sport, and Manual modes. The options are limitless with Avata.

Although flying FPV comes with high risk of crashes, especially as a beginner, the Avata is a very durable drone to fly. 

6. DJI FPV 

DJI FPV Combo
$994.00

Enjoy crystal-clear real-time and HD Low-Latency Transmission video, even at distances of up to 6.2 miles.

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02/26/2024 11:06 am GMT

Although the DJI FPV is the first FPV drone released by DJI, it is still one powerful option for flying long-range and capturing outstanding FPV cinematic videos at high speeds.

Weight795 g
Flight TimeMax 20 mins
Camera GimbalSingle-axis camera gimbal (tilt)
Electronic roll axis
CMOS Size1/2.3-inch CMOS
Camera Aperturef/2.8
Video Resolution4k at 60 frames per second
FHD at 120 frames per second
Codecs & Video Format.mp4 and .mov video formats
H.264/MPEG-4 AVC, H.265/HEVC
Supports D-Cinelike
Does it support ND filters?Yes
Photo Resolution3840×2160 single shot JPEG

✅ Pros

  • It’s an excellent FPV drone for flying long-range
  • It can be flown in Normal, Manual and Sport modes
  • It has frontal obstacle avoidance sensors (when using in Normal mode)
  • It’s an excellent FPV drone with a high level of wind resistance
  • The transmission to the goggles is fantastic and has very low latency, although it is a digital transmission system
  • You can also freestyle well
  • Can film in 4k at 60 fps
  • It’s compatible with ND filters
  • The entire kit is cheaper than the Avata kit
  • It has an emergency stop feature
  • Does not tumble

❌ Cons

  • The drone is already older
  • It’s quite heavy and does not fold (it occupies quite a lot of space)
  • It’s not as crash-resistant as Avata
  • The camera sensor is smaller than Avata
  • Although suitable for beginners, it’s riskier to fly due to its heavy weight, no duct guards, and extreme speed capabilities

The DJI FPV drone is the opposite of what Avata is: the DJI FPV is made to fly long-range, surf mountains, dive at incredible speeds, etc.

Due to its form, size, and weight, it has amazing aerodynamics, and it’s perfect for flying in high winds.

The video quality is slightly inferior to the Avata because we’re dealing with somewhat older technology, but even so, it’s still outstanding compared to many other custom FPV drones.

Here is a video to show you the quality of the DJI FPV:

Choosing a beginner drone for video – what to look for

There are two core elements to pay attention to when selecting a drone for video: the drone must be beginner-friendly and record videos well.

Nowadays, most drones are beginner-friendly, but drones with avoidance sensors, autonomous functions, and ease of use may be suitable for new pilots.

When browsing for drones with a good camera capability for videos, here’s what to look for:

  • CMOS size: This is essential when choosing a drone to capture videos or even photographs.

    The dynamic range, quality of the video, and the camera’s ability to film in low light is directly related to the size of the sensor.
  • Video resolution: If you’re looking for a beginner drone to record videos, you should always choose a drone with a resolution of 4K or even higher.

    The drone should also be able to record in 60 fps.
  • Video format: Almost all drones can film in .mp4 or .mov. But what type of codecs do they use to compress these videos? ProRes? H265? Can you film in D-Cinelike or D-log?

    You must answer these questions before purchasing a drone.
  • ND filters: Most camera drones should be compatible with the specific neutral density filters you need to capture cinematic footage with your drone.

    Check if such filters are available before buying a drone.

    If you’re looking to take videos at a professional level, you need to set up your drone camera in manual mode and use ND filters.
  • Post-processing: Although not directly related to the type of drone you choose for filming, your device (laptop, computer) to post-process such videos should be powerful enough.

    For instance, selecting a drone to film in ProRes at 5.4k resolution would not be ideal if you cannot edit your videos.