There are many quadcopters in the market today, with at least six manufacturers providing a high-quality product that stands out from the rest. There are certainly many types, but often they are clones or copies of the big name brand manufacturers. While UDI, Cheerson, Syma, Parrot, Nine Eagles, DJI, and Walkera are some of the more popular choices, some utilise quadcopters with GPS technology to increase their functionality.
The best Quadcopters with GPS works through a WiFi signal that connects the radio controller to the quadcopter. Many of these quads will operate just fine with the RC controller, but the pilot will not be able to take full advantage of the GPS features which require communication with a satellite. A smart phone or tablet takes the functions of the RC controller and becomes the controller.
These are run with an app, and may show live streaming video, or offer the pilot an option to select the flight path based on a GPS map. It’s not surprising that you’re going to have to pay a bit more to have these extra features.
Quick Comparison Table & Our Pick!
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13.8 x 13.8 x 2.8
70 x 120 x 45
7.3 x 3.7 x 3
Other Great Recommendations
23 x 23 x 5
11.4 x 11.1 x 7.1
Should I Buy a Quadcopter with GPS Drone?
Many people who have been searching around for a drone may wonder if they need quadcopters with GPS. There can certainly be some benefits when hunting around for the best quadcopters with GPS, rather than one that doesn’t. Since not all quadcopter have GPS, there can be a few notable differences.
Most quadcopters with GPS rely on radio control technology to enable communication between quadcopter and radio controller. But if there is no radio controller in the box, you may need to download an app to your smart phone or smart device. This will enable you to fly your quad with the aid of the app, and to also watch live streaming video.
There are some quads that can run with both an RC controller, and an app. Others will allow the smart device to be hooked up to the end of the radio controller, which will then allow you to watch live streaming video on the screen, but still retain full control of the RC controller too.
Before choosing a quadcopter you’ll have to decide which you prefer. It can certainly be beneficial to take full advantage of GPS technology if you do plan on filming aerial footage out in the mountains, or wilderness, as you don’t need to worry about carrying an additional piece of equipment in your backpack.
What Is GPS Technology?
GPS technology is used to help connect the quadcopter with the RC controller, or to a smart device. GPS stands for: Global Positioning System. Not all quads this technology. WiFi is required to provide that connection between units, while GPS is a wireless communication service with a satellite that provides exact coordinates.
Within smart phone that runs the app will be a GPS receiver. This receiver must lock onto the signal of at least three different satellites that circle the earth. This enables is to calculate the latitude and longitude of the drone. If it can connect to four satellites, the receiver can calculate latitude, longitude, and altitude.
This is beneficial when flying a quadcopter out in the wilderness. The RC controller can make note of its exact positioning. This is where other features can come into play. A return to home function will enable the quad to find its way back to the beginning. The pilot may also be able to plot out the quadcopter’s path in advance on a map, so that it flies around in a predetermined path.
How to Find Best Quadcopter with GPS and Camera
With that being said, here are top features to look out for when purchasing a quadcopter with GPS and camera:
- GPS positioning
- One key return home
- One key take-off
- Camera quality
- Additional smart features
GPS positioning is a feature which includes a GPS inside the drone and a drone either has it or doesn't. However, the high-end drones which come with a GPS will often have features such as GPS positioning, one key return home, one key take-off.
One key return home is one of the safest features on a drone which even the most experienced drone fliers like to have, just in the case. Errors can happen whether they're human mistakes or drone errors. And you wouldn't like to risk losing a high-quality drone, right?
Therefore, the safest way is to find a drone which comes with GPS positioning that also allows one key return home with a GPS navigation. Some low-budget drones have a one key return home feature - but it doesn't operate with the GPS coordinates. Instead, it sends the drone to the place it took off - using a short term memory.
If you're investing in a drone, we highly recommend looking for a drone that comes with GPS, among with other quality features. Some high-end drones have a really long reach and you'll most of the time fly it out of your sight. Having the ability to find a drone in the case of a failure is very important.
From other quality features, we recommend checking the included camera (if there's any - but most likely there is one), and additional smart features which might make the operation easier, more fun, or simply better.
The Best Quadcopter With GPS In The Market That Money Can Buy!
EACHINE GPS Drone
If you're a beginner who's looking for one of the easiest-to-fly quadcopters - EACHINE is a GPS drone which is very easy to use.
At first sight, it's a very attractive quadcopter which features a futuristic and sleek design that mixes matte black and silver color. On the other hand, it's built-in a compact way so you can store it and take it anywhere with you.
But what's most important are the rich features such as GPS position, adjustable HD camera, Follow Me Mode, Orbit Mode, Waypoint Mode, and a couple of others.
We've really enjoyed taking photos with a 1080p camera that features wide 120-degree FOV. You also get to adjust the camera's position up to 45-degrees. However, the GPS positioning system is one of the most important features which ensures you don't have to worry about losing a drone.
This makes it ideal for beginners who are just learning to handle the drone, so you get more time to focus on the action. Whether the drone loses signal or its battery runs low - you can return it to your location with a simple press of a button.
One key return button is very useful which makes the drone return to the start point. We find Follow Me mode to be also useful for video creators, especially in conditions where aerial shot works the best.
The battery life is very decent so you get the time to experience all features at once - creating an amazing photo or video shots. It can last up to 16 min and it doesn't take long to get recharged.
- GPS positioning mode
- Plenty of smart features
- Attractive & futuristic design
- Quality HD camera
- Decent battery life
- Phone holder at the remote controller is quite flimsy
- Instructions could have been better
DJI Phantom 4 Advanced
DJI is a very well known manufacturer of the quadcopter, including GPS drones and you can trust their drones as they have most of the time come with the best features on the market.
DJI Phantom 4 Advanced is the most upgraded version up to this point where it features a super-long battery life, fast flight speed, 20 MP camera and even the ability to record 4K videos.
The reason we recommend Phantom 4 Advanced instead of Phantom 4 Professional for a GPS quadcopter is the lighter weight it produces - which makes it easier to control the drone, hold it steady, and even get super accurate aerial shots.
Once you fly out this drone, you will get up to 30 minutes of flight time and you will be able to fly it at the speed of up to 44 miles per hour.
The most unique feature of this drone is the Active Track which features advanced object recognition & tracking while keeping the drone in the frame to achieve the best shots from above. This is ideal when recording videos and photos in crowded places - since this avoids people, animals, trees, and more.
Also, worth to mention is the super-long mile range up to 4.35 miles.
- 30-minute flight time
- Flight speed up to 44 miles per hour
- High-quality camera
- Satellite positioning (GPS and Glonass)
- Plenty of unique smart features
- The camera has no zoom feature
Cheerson CX40 is an upgraded version of its previous CX20 model which brings new updates, new features, and a new design which is a bit more lightweight.
From a pretty standard white design, Cheerson CX40 features a complete redesign with its distinctive black & yellow color combination. Other than the color, the shape is a bit more compact and is ergonomically designed for better aero benefits.
The biggest change is visible in the remote controller which is now very compact and simplified - offering a better experience to the first-time fliers.
CX40 model features an improved 720p HD WiFi camera which offers a straight high definition image for best aerial photos and videos.
One-touch take-off and one touch landing work well together with GPS positioning to offer stable flight along with the optical flow sensor.
A couple of other smart features which offer better flight are speed mode and left & right throttle mode key. Once you get the experience, you will enjoy the flip/rolls button that makes flying drone a bit more fun when you aren't working on getting those perfect aerial shots.
- 720p HD camera
- Lightweight design
- Compact remote controller
- One-touch take-off and landing
- Left-right throttle mode key
- Phone holder bracket is a bit loose
Parrot AR.Drone 2.0
The Parrot AR.Drone 2.0 is another quadcopter that has an HD camera and utilizes GPS technology. It has a black body with four black arms or legs arranged in an X pattern. There are four red propellers. The price is reasonable, at around $300.
What’s notable about the Parrot AR.Drone 2.0 is that it comes with circular black blade guards that are quite similar to the UDI models. At first glance you may think it’s a UDI, until you look more closely. This drone can be updated so that it meets the latest FAA requirements. It can follow these requirements through its GPS technology—thus avoiding prohibited airspace for government, military, etc. It works with the Freeflight 2.0 app, which is always free to download or update.
You can operate this quad through its intuitive smart phone or tablet control system. It can be flown indoors or out, and has an automatic stabilization system which will help you to record the best live streaming HD video. It also has thirty-six minutes of flight time, quite impressive for a drone at this price point. You can fly the Parrot out to a distance of fifty meters.
- Remote controlling with a smartphone
- 720p HD camera suitable for live streaming
- Free Flight piloting app for iOS and Android
- Compact design yet quick and powerful
- Features high-speed USB for extensions
- The range is a bit limited due to the WiFi connection
- A bit short life battery
Walkera QR X350 RTF Drone
What once was one unusual looking drone is now a more sophisticated looking drone which features a smaller body which is also now lighter yet is full of innovative smart features.
It features GPS altitude hold system which doesn't only return the drone when the battery is low, the signal is out of reach, or on a press of a button - but it also holds the drone in a perfectly still position during the flight.
This allows users to take perfectly sharp photos which are constantly in the focus.
One key return home works along with the GPS positioning to provide safer flights for both beginner and intermediate users. X350 RTF drone also features an altitude sensor that increases safety mid-flight.
However, probably one of the most useful features is the low voltage detection system which allows you to track & find your drone in the case of a drone loss. From experience, we find that this can happen over time even with the high-end drones.
To increase the fun of flying a drone, you'll most likely love the ability to use this drone in first-person view (FPV). However, you will have to purchase a VR headset additionally - but we believe it's worth it since you get to experience the aerial view.
In case this isn't an ideal experience for you, you will still be able to mount your GoPro camera to the mount that comes included with the drone.
Another great thing is that we believe this drone is somewhere in the mid-price tier range and yet it offers a lot. Therefore, this means it's a pretty valuable drone. It might not be as good as DJI drones, but if you're looking at the next best thing - this is it.
- GPS altitude hold system
- One key return home
- GoPro camera mount
- Comes with remote controller
- FPV available
- Decent value for the price
- GPS one key return home takes a bit long sometimes
The Old Guard ( Some Still Going Strong & Some Gone!)
Nine Eagles Galaxy Visitor 3
Nine Eagles Galaxy Visitor 3 may be new to people who love their DJI, Parrot, or UDI quads. This quad comes in a white upper casing, with lower black casing, short landing feet, and landing legs. It has a GPS auto-return, and camera.
The pricing is around $150, making it a worthwhile look. The Nine Eagles Galaxy Visitor 3 has a headless flying mode which makes it easier for beginners to learn. Once you’ve mastered flying, you can begin to film video. The auto return function also makes it simple to return your quad without worrying about losing it.
There is an altitude hold setting which is perfect for capturing some great shots such as moving waterfalls, or birds in flight. There is also a brake function should you feel you are losing control of it. There is an altitude sensor, and signal loss protection. The camera is a two megapixel HD camera.
It takes seventy minutes to charge up and has fifteen to twenty minutes of flight and recording time. It also comes with card reader and two gigabyte card so you don’t have to worry about buying them.
DJI Phantom 3 Professional
The DJI Phantom 3 Professional is a premium model of quadcopter that comes with a high definition camera and utilises GPS technology. It has a sleek white case with gold stripes, and white propellers. There are two long landing legs on either side of the quad to protect the camera.
This quad is priced at $800, but the pro camera makes it worth the cost, considering that a good digital or video camera is going to cost half that anyway. The camera is 4K UHD 720 pm.
To utilise GPS technology, the user must download an app that works on their smart phone or device. They can then watch live streaming video on their screen, as well as choose from a variety of settings. Usually when one takes advantage of GPS technology, one gives up the option of the separate RC controller, as the smart device is the one who communicates with the satellites.
The DJI Phantom 3 Professional utilises two different positioning modules, GPS and GLONASS dual positioning modules. GLONASS is like GPS, but it’s the Russian GPS system. This ensure that no matter where your quad is in the world, it can benefit from GPS technology.
You may be surprised to learn that Cheerson CX20 makes a GPS quadcopter too. Most people know them by their line of micro quadcopters. The Cheerson CX20 comes in a shiny white case with red stripe, two long white landing legs and black and white rotors. This model costs about $270. It has black windows to represent a cockpit, for those who appreciate a drone that looks more like a toy.
The quad runs at a 2.4G ISM frequency, providing an effective control distance of up to three hundred meters, in the best flight environment. It’s also built with anti-interference so other drones on the field won’t affect or be affected by it. The flight system is an integrated MX GPS auto pilot system.
Cheerson CX20 has attitude and altitude control settings enabling pilots to switch between modes. The IOC also enables intelligent flight control. The LED lights are high intensity and will help with orientation during flights. One charge will give you fifteen minutes of flight time. You will still need to connect an app or computer in order to experience the full benefits of the GPS feature.
Walkera Runner 250 Advance
The Walkera Runner 250 Advance is an unusual looking drone that on first glance doesn’t appear it will get in the air. It has four propellers and is in black and red material. Each component appears to be connected to a frame, but like a home build would look. This costs about $450 but does have a 1080 p camera and utilizes GPS technology.
Walkera Runner 250 Advance has three different antenna, which is necessary for its navigation. Other notable items are four landing legs, and a variety of onboard equipment. It’s made from CFP material for the main body. It has 5.8G real-time video streaming and an OSD function. In order to take full advantage of its GPS function, you will need to add a WiFi converter and use an app.
There is a dual GPS module. It can be held in a holding pattern, as well as return to home on the press of a button. This quadcopter can fly at ultra fast speeds despite its look, to thirty-five to forty kilometers per hour. It can reach a distance of 1000 meters from the controller. It takes two hours to charge up, but only provides about eleven to twelve minutes of flight time, perhaps due to its speed.
GPS is beneficial for the professional photographer or videographer who offers photography or videography services to their clients. It means that your quadcopter will be designed for professionals, and also eliminates the need to take bulky RC controllers out into the wilderness, or have to carry more equipment up a mountain range or waterfall path.
There may be many more uses that you’ll discover when you purchase a quadcopter with GPS. They may be a bit more tricky to learn to use, but often there are tutorial videos and manuals online. Don’t be discouraged if you can’t find one in English, often many quadcopter forums will provide links, as someone, somewhere, will have provided a translation, or their own instructional videos. Check out Youtube too, there are plenty of great videos online that will teach you how to fly nearly every type of quadcopter available.
There are at least five great quadcopters to choose from, but you’ll find many more as your begin your online search. Do read product literature carefully, to ensure that it does what your intentions want.
No matter which GPS quadcopter you’re chosen, you’re sure to have fun engaging in this fun and wonderful hobby. Who knows where it may lead you—perhaps to your own quadcopter filming or photography business?
Whilst we aim to provide you the best priced products in the market in 2019, there are always special occasions like Black Friday & Cyber Monday where, all products are available at an extremely discounted price on Amazon through deals.
Originally posted 2016-05-17 16:23:45.
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