Not everyone is loyal to only DJI drones, and there are many reasons for that.
You’d be surprised how other companies have managed to technologically advance their own drones with unique perks that make them stand out.
Some drones are even considered ahead of DJI.
So, which drones are better than DJI?
The Holy Stone HS720E, Potensic Atom SE, Autel EVO Nano Plus, and Autel EVO 2 Pro V3 are fantastic alternatives to equivalent-priced DJI drones. These drones also share some unique extras you cannot find in DJI drones.
The list is a bit more complex than what we wrote above, and we have many tips and unique information to share with you.
Therefore, I recommend you stay with us until the end for the most comprehensive article on drones that may be better than DJI.
To help, we’ve identified and reviewed the best drone courses for beginners and professionals.
Why an alternative to DJI?
Although DJI is known worldwide for its fantastic drones with good stabilization and flight range (not to mention tremendous cameras), that shouldn’t be all to consider when buying a drone.
Further, over the years, many pilots have complained about glitches in their DJI drones, such as when their drones flew away by themselves or crashed without reason. Even obstacle avoidance is known to often fail.
I am not looking to share only the downsides of DJI. These drones are fantastic. They’re just not perfect.
- 6 Most-Common Problems with Mavic Air 2s (Must-Read)
- 9 Most Common Problems with DJI Mini 3 (Must-Read)
Is DJI leading the drone market?
DJI remains the leading drone company in 2023.
This will possibly change in the future, especially if the US decides to ban DJI and Autel drones.
But we’ll wait and see if this decision could have such a significant impact that it will take down DJI from its leading place in the drone market.
Which company could replace DJI?
Autel has a strong reputation for producing high-quality drones, from budget to professional and commercial use. However, it’s in the same boat as DJI in that its drones could get banned in the US.
Holy Stone and Potensic are also known for their budget and entry-level drones that have won the hearts of many new drone pilots.
Many other companies are known to produce drones, but none are very reputable and far down the ladder compared to DJI.
Are there drones better than DJI?
What we consider “better” and how to compare such drones with DJI depends.
First, we must refer only to drones similar in price to DJI.
Could there be such drones better than DJI? Surely!
Please remember that we can’t find any drones to exceed DJI drones in every aspect.
So it’s like a two-way street. We give up some perks when buying drones from other companies but gain in other areas.
With this in mind, let’s get over the drones we came across based on professional opinions and hours of research.
» MORE: Best Camera Drones Under $2,000
DJI Mini 2 SE vs. Holy Stone HS720E
|SPECS||DJI Mini 2 SE||Holy Stone HS720E|
|Weight||246 g at takeoff||495 g|
|Size||138×81×58 mm folded, without propellers||177x104x58 mm folded|
|Flight Time||Max 31 mins||23 mins per battery pack (min 2 batteries)|
|Flight Range||Max transmission distance of 9.75 mi||0.62 mi flight distance|
|Camera||1/2.3-inch CMOS. Can film in 2.7k at 30 fps and photograph in 12 MP resolution||4K EIS Anti-Shake Sony Sensor Camera that can film in 4k at 30 frames per second|
|Other Perks||Three-axis mechanical gimbal, several Intelligent Flight Modes||Tap Fly, several intelligent features|
|Bundle||DJI Mini 2 SE Drone with DJI RC-N1. One battery only.||Holy Stone HS720E drone, two or three batteries, remote controller, carrying case|
These two drones are the first to come to mind when acquiring a budget drone capable of decent performance.
The DJI Mini 2 SE is a decent drone, but the Holy Stone HS720E has a fantastic bundle.
The difference is that the Mini 2 SE is optimized for long-range flights, and the HS720E is not.
Legally speaking, drone laws declare you can fly only in a visual line of sight (VLOS) unless you apply for specific permission. That makes the DJI Mini 2 SE transmission range a bit impractical.
The HS720E camera can film in 4K, and although it doesn’t have a three-axis mechanical gimbal, the electronic image stabilization is decent to offer you smooth footage.
DJI Mini 2 SE
Lightweight and Foldable Mini Drone with 2.7K Video, 10km Video Transmission, 31-min Flight Time, Under 249 g, Return to Home, Automatic Pro Shoots, Drone with camera for Beginners.
- Good transmission range
- Decent flight time
- Newer drone
- Good stability in high winds
- Three-axis gimbal
- Does not require registration in some countries (sub-250-gram drone)
- Several Intelligent Flight Modes
- Can film only in 2.7k at 30 frames per second
- The CMOS sensor is small compared to other drones
- Can photograph in 12MP resolution
- No obstacle avoidance sensors
- No Active Track or follow-me mode
- It has a few bugs with the intelligent features
The DJI Mini 2 SE was released in March 2023. It’s the lowest-budget drone you can find from DJI.
Although it has a low starting price, you can only get the drone with a remote controller and one included battery. If you need more batteries, you must buy them separately.
Holy Stone HS720E
4K EIS Drone with UHD Camera for Adults, Easy GPS Quadcopter for Beginner with Triple Flight Time, Brushless Motor, Auto Return Home, Follow Me& Anti-shake Camera.
- It comes in a decent bundle with multiple batteries
- Proper flight time per battery
- Can film in 4k
- It has a follow-me mode
- It also has several intelligent features
- Low starting price
- Easy-to-fly budget drone
- Anti-shake electronic image stabilization
- Short-range flights only (0.62 miles)
- It does not have a three-axis mechanical gimbal like the Mini 2 SE
- Requires registration due to being heavier than 250 grams
- Lacks anti-collision sensors
- Not enough documentation and specs from Holy Stone to make an informed decision
The Holy Stone HS720E was released in December 2020. It’s older but decent as a first drone.
The major advantage is that it comes in a nice bundle with two or three batteries (depending on where you purchase) and a carrying case.
The HS720E camera features a Sony CMOS known for its good image quality. It can film in 4k at 30 frames per second.
Moreover, the HS720E has a follow-me mode and several intelligent features.
Why choose the Holy Stone HS720E over the DJI Mini 2 SE
The Holy Stone HS720E is a fantastic choice for beginners who want to start flying drones without investing much.
I choose the Holy Stone HS720E over the DJI Mini 2 SE because it has a 4k camera, more flight time with the additional batteries, and a nice carrying case to transport your drone.
DJI Mini 3 vs. Potensic ATOM SE
|SPECS||DJI Mini 3||Potensic ATOM SE|
|Weight||248 g||Under 249 g|
|Size||148×90×62 mm folded, without propellers||88x143x58mm folded|
|Flight Time||38 mins with the Intelligent battery|
51 mins with the Intelligent Battery Plus
|31 mins per battery pack (can be purchased with two or three batteries)|
|Flight Range||11 or 15.5 mi, depending on the battery (max flight distance)||2.5 mi transmission distance with PixSync 2.0|
|Camera||1/1.3-inch CMOS capable of recording in 4k at 30 frames per second and photographing in 48 MP resolution||1/3-inch Sony CMOS sensor capable of filming in 4k at 30 frames per second and taking photos in 12 MP resolution|
|Other Perks||Three-axis mechanical gimbal, Intelligent Flight Modes, compatible with DJI RC (remote controller with screen)||Potensic ATOM SE with remote controller and carrying case. Depending on the bundle, it can come with one, two, or three batteries.|
|Bundle||DJI Mini 3 drone with one battery and DJI RC-N1. It can also be purchased at a higher price with DJI RC or Fly More Combo||Potensic ATOM SE with remote controller and carrying case. It can come with one, two, or three batteries, depending on the bundle.|
The Potensic ATOM SE is another fantastic budget drone compared to the DJI Mini 3.
The ATOM SE price is lower. Even with the costliest Potensic ATOM SE bundle, where you get three batteries, the ATOM SE is still more cost-effective.
A single Potensic battery lasts for 31 minutes.
This gives the ATOM SE a major flight advantage over the Mini 3, a top niche DJI drone with long flight times.
For the Mini 3 to fly longer, you need the Intelligent Battery Plus, which will cost extra. Moreover, the weight will exceed 250 grams, and this drone will require registration.
As for the camera, both drones can record in 4k at 30 frames per second. The Mini 3 CMOS is larger than the ATOM SE, but despite that, the ATOM SE can take astonishing photographs due to its Sony sensor.
» MORE: Potensic Atom SE App (Explained)
DJI Mini 3
- A very well-known drone capable of good flight performance
- DJI Mini 3 supports two batteries and can fly for a long time
- It’s a sub-250-gram drone that may benefit from relaxed drone laws
- Good transmission range
- It’s foldable
- Compatible with DJI RC (with screen)
- Good wind resistance
- The starting price can be slightly high compared to its competitor
- No obstacle avoidance sensors
- No follow-me mode
The Mini 3 was released in December 2022 and is one of the most known DJI drones.
It is a stripped-down version of the Mini 3 Pro, where obstacle avoidance sensors and a few more features were removed to bring the price down.
The cost will drastically soar if you consider buying more batteries or the DJI RC.
» MORE: DJI Mini 3 – Beginner’s Guide
Potensic ATOM SE
- Excellent flight time per battery pack
- Has follow-me mode
- It comes with several intelligent features
- It does not require registration
- It comes in a nice bundle
- Cheaper than the DJI Mini 3
- Excellent wind resistance
- The camera sensor is quite small
- Low image resolution
- No obstacle avoidance sensors
- Lower transmission distance than the Mini 3
The Potensic ATOM SE is another cheap and exceptional drone you can purchase. It has great build quality and looks very modern.
Although it doesn’t have anti-collision sensors, it boasts a follow-me mode that can be used when vlogging or taking a B-roll.
What I love about this drone is the whopping flight time of each battery. It’s not expensive to purchase more batteries to fly for about an hour and a half.
Why choose the Potensic ATOM SE over the DJI Mini 3
I personally choose the Potensic ATOM SE over the DJI Mini 3 for a few reasons:
- This drone is cheaper
- It offers more in a fly-more pack
- With all the extra batteries, the flight time is drastically improved over what the Mini 3 shows for a higher price
- It has a functional follow-me mode
» MORE: Best Affordable Drones
DJI Mini 3 Pro vs. Autel EVO Nano Plus
|SPECS||DJI Mini 3 Pro||Autel EVO Nano Plus|
|Weight||249 g||249 g|
|Size||145×90×62 mm folded||140×90×50mm folded|
|Flight Time||34 mins with the Intelligent Battery|
47 mins with the Intelligent Battery Plus
|28 mins per battery pack|
|Flight Range||11 to 15.5 mi, depending on the battery (max flight distance). The real flight distance is imposed by FCC, CE, SRRC, and MIC||10.4 mi. The real flight distance is imposed by FCC, CE, SRRC, and MIC.|
|Camera||1/1.3-inch CMOS||1/1.28-inch CMOS|
|Obstacle Avoidance||Three-way obstacle avoidance||Three-way obstacle avoidance|
|Follow-me Mode||Yes, with Active Track 4.0||Yes, with Dynamic Track 2.1|
|Other Perks||Three-axis mechanical gimbal, compatible with DJI RC, Level 5 wind resistance||Three-axis mechanical gimbal, Level 5 wind resistance, No geofencing, PDAF + CDAF Focus, 4K RYYB color filter sensor|
|Bundle||DJI Mini 3 Pro, DJI RC-N1 (or DJI RC at a higher price), one battery (or three with Fly More Pack)||Autel EVO Nano Plus drone, remote controller, three batteries, four cables, several spare propellers, MicroSD 64GB card, fly-more charger, backpack, screwdriver, and additional tools|
The price of Autel EVO Nano Plus is between the DJI Mini 3 Pro with DJI RC-N1 and the DJI RC. You will only get a single battery. If you need more, buy the fly-more pack, which is close to $1k.
The EVO Nano Plus has a slightly larger CMOS sensor, can photograph at a higher resolution, fly longer with additional batteries, and has a unique RYYB color filter and dual focus.
This makes the EVO Nano Plus more practical than the Mini 3 Pro.
DJI Mini 3 Pro
- An excellent mid-range drone good for photography and filming
- Can photograph at 48 MP resolution and film in 4k at 60 frames per second
- It has three-directional obstacle avoidance sensors
- It comes with ActiveTrack and follow-me mode on top of several intelligent functions
- It’s compatible with two types of batteries
- It offers a decent flight time
- It can fly long-range
- Good wind resistance
- Benefits from relaxed drone laws because of its weight (under 250 grams)
- It has a return-to-home function
- It does not have omnidirectional obstacle avoidance sensors
- The price as a bundle is higher than the Autel EVO Nano Plus
The DJI Mini 3 Pro was released in May 2022, making it a slightly older drone.
If you want to purchase the Mini 3 Pro, you have multiple options, both with one battery or the Fly More Pack and with the DJI RC-N1 or DJI RC (with screen).
The Mini 3 Pro is a fantastic drone for beginners and a favorite of many drone pilots.
However, not everyone loves the Mini 3 Pro due to some common issues it may have.
Autel EVO Nano Plus
Lightweight and Foldable Camera Drone with 4K/30FPS HDR Video, 50MP Photo1/1.28"(0.8") CMOS RYYB Sensor, Tri-Directional Obstacle Sensing,3-Axis Gimbal, 3-Way Obstacle Avoidance.
- It comes in a big bundle
- Great flight time
- Decent flight range
- Its three batteries offer more flight time than the Mini 3 Pro
- Its camera sensor is slightly larger than the Mini 3 Pro
- The photo resolution is larger
- It has a follow-me mode and several intelligent features
- It comes with three-directional (360 degrees) anti-collision sensors
- Dynamic Track 2.1 is an advanced technology offering immersive flight performance over some intelligent functions and follow-me mode
- The RYYB camera sensor reproduces accurate and vivid colors and is better for photographing or filming in low-light conditions
- It has a dual-focus system
- Large camera aperture
- Bright orange version making it more visible in the sky for longer-range flights under FAA laws
- No geofencing system
- No omnidirectional sensing system
- It records in 4k but only at 30 frames per second, whereas the Mini 3 Pro can record 4k at 60 FPS
The Autel EVO Nano Plus was released in January 2022, a few months before the DJI Mini 3 Pro.
This drone is the more advanced version of the standard EVO Nano.
While the Plus version offers a much better camera in every aspect, everything else is the same as the standard version.
However, the price difference between the EVO Nano and Nano Plus is too small not to take advantage of the extra features of the new camera and the larger camera sensor.
The EVO Nano Plus is well known for having one of the richest bundles in a drone. Compared to the Mini 3 Pro, the bundle places this drone above the Mini 3 Pro as quite cost-effective.
Why choose Autel EVO Nano Plus over the DJI Mini 3 Pro
At this time, with what we recommend, the Autel EVO Nano Plus has better perks than the Mini 3 Pro.
I would choose the Autel EVO Nano Plus if:
- You want more flight time (three batteries)
- You need a rich bundle with a ready-to-fly drone
- You want to take advantage of the RYYB color filter
- You want the dual-focus system
- You want to see the drone farther away
DJI Mavic 3 Pro vs. Autel EVO 2 Pro V3
|SPECS||DJI Mavic 3 Pro||Autel EVO 2 Pro V3|
|Weight||958 g||1,191 g|
|Size||231.1×98×95.4 mm folded, without propellers||230x130x108 mm (folded)|
|Flight Time||43 mins||40 mins per battery pack|
|Flight Range||17.3 mi, restricted by FCC, CE, SRRC, and MIC||15.5 mi, restricted by FCC (to 9.3 mi), CE, SRRC, and MIC (5 mi)|
|Camera||Hasselblad Camera: 4/3-inch CMOS, capable of filming in 5.1k at 50 frames per second and photographing in 20 MP resolution. 1-3x zoom|
Medium Tele Camera: 1/1.3-inch CMOS capable of filming in 4k at 60 frames per second and photographing in 48 MP resolution. 3-7x zoom
Tele Camera: 1/2-inch CMOS filming in 4k at 60 frames per second and capable of photographing in 12 MP resolution. 7-28x zoom
|1-inch CMOS capable of filming in 6k at 30 frames per second or 4k at 60 frames per second. It can photograph in 20 MP resolution|
|Obstacle Avoidance||Omnidirectional obstacle avoidance system||Omnidirectional obstacle avoidance system|
|Follow-me Mode||Yes, with Active Track 5.0||Yes|
|Other Perks||Three-axis mechanical gimbal, compatible with DJI RC and DJI RC Pro, O3+ transmission system, high video bitrate||Three-axis mechanical gimbal, moonlight algorithm for night photography and filming, Autel SkyLink 2.0 transmission system, 12-bit image|
|Bundle||DJI Mavic 3 Pro with DJI RC (controller with screen) and one battery in the standard bundle||Autel EVO 2 Pro V3 with Autel Smart Controller SE (6.4”OLED Screen), two batteries, six extra propellers, shoulder bag, rugged transport case, four ND filters, 64GB memory card, fly-more charger, and several more accessories|
This should be a rigid comparison between two excellent professional drones.
Although the DJI Mavic 3 Pro is known to be fantastic for professional use because of its three cameras and unique zoom capabilities, the Autel EVO 2 Pro V3 (2023 version) offers some tremendous perks the Mavic 3 Pro doesn’t have.
The EVO 2 Pro V3 is known for low-light and night photography because of the Moonlight Algorithm 2.0. The two batteries make this drone an amazing choice to fly longer than an hour.
Per battery pack, the Mavic 3 Pro has a similar flight time to EVO 2 Pro V3.
» MORE: Autel Evo Lite+ Review
DJI Mavic 3 Pro
- Large CMOS sensor with Hasselblad camera
- It comes with three cameras, capable of zooming up to 28x
- Omnidirectional anti-collision sensors
- Advanced ActiveTrack 5.0 with a follow-me mode
- Can fly for a long time
- Excellent transmission and can fly long-range
- Can film in 5.1k
- It comes with DJI RC (with screen)
- Large in size
- Requires registration
- It can be intimidating to fly
- High price
- No bundle
The DJI Mavic 3 Pro was released in May 2023. This drone is most known for its fantastic Hasselblad camera with a massive sensor size, one of the biggest in any consumer drone.
The zoom capabilities of the other two cameras make this one a good option for many professional pilots.
However, the standard pack comes with only one battery. You should dig deep into your pocket if you want more DJI Mavic 3 Pro batteries.
Autel EVO 2 Pro V3
- Excellent flight time
- Can easily fly long-range without issues
- Good for photography and filming, especially in low-light conditions
- 12-bit images
- Excellent wind resistance
- Omnidirectional anti-collision sensors
- It has advanced intelligent features, including a follow-me mode
- It comes in a bundle with many accessories, making it ready to fly without any extra investment
- No geofencing system to restrict you from flying in specific zones
- The camera sensor is slightly smaller than the one found in DJI Mavic 3 Pro and only has one camera
- Its price is slightly higher than the Mavic 3 Pro
The Autel EVO 2 Pro V3, the newest 2023 version, is a smart choice for night photography and drone filming.
Although with a smaller (1-inch CMOS) sensor than Mavic 3 Pro, its camera is optimized for exceptional photography and can film in 6k.
This drone also comes with a special remote controller with an incorporated screen.
On top of that, the EVO 2 Pro V3 has one of the biggest bundles you can find in a drone (see the above table).
The Autel batteries offered for the EVO 2 Pro V3 make this drone fly for a lot longer than Mavic 3 Pro.
And with the Live Deck, you can stream anywhere without stress, making it a fantastic drone for vloggers.
Why Choose Autel EVO 2 Pro V3 over DJI Mavic 3 Pro
Both drones offer excellent performances and specs, but practically, I will lean towards the Autel EVO 2 Pro V3 for a few reasons:
- It’s a fantastic choice if you’re not looking for three cameras
- It has more flight time
- You don’t have to invest in more accessories because the EVO 2 Pro V3 comes with plenty
- It has a good resolution and framerate