Good drone for a beginner

JuliusSeizure

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Looking to buy a good drone that I can use to learn with and get the basics of flying. If anyone has one they are not using that they are willing to let go, I'd be keen to buy it. Looking to spend between R1k-2k for something good.
 

w1z4rd

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You probably wont get that (a good drone). Even if you build one yourself, you are looking at 5k. Good luck on your quest, theyre fun technology to own and use.
 

CB40

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You probably wont get that (a good drone). Even if you build one yourself, you are looking at 5k. Good luck on your quest, theyre fun technology to own and use.
And you can get a job with security at Eskom when you're good at flying a drone
 

airborne

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A Dji Spark is probably the best bet, I’ve seen them for around R4k 2hnd, possibly a bit cheaper but not much. It’s a fully featured drone just without the larger payload/better camera/navigation/range of the more expensive models.

If you want to take drones seriously pay the extra and start with the best brand. You’ll also get used to the ecosystem.

Is there any competition to the DJI drones in the mid to prosumer level?

I don’t know of any other brands off hand and Dji dominate as the drone camera of choice in the all the YouTube creator videos I’ve ever seen. Well that’s except for fpv drones, Dji doesn’t seem to sell them for some reason.
 

JuliusSeizure

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A Dji Spark is probably the best bet, I’ve seen them for around R4k 2hnd, possibly a bit cheaper but not much.

It’s a fully featured drone just without the larger payload/better camera/navigation/range of the more expensive models.

If you want to take drones seriously pay the extra and start with the best brand. You’ll also get used to the ecosystem.

Is there any competition to the DJI drones in the mid to prosumer level?

I don’t know of any other brands off hand and Dji dominate as the drone camera of choice in the all the YouTube creator videos I’ve ever seen. Well that’s except for fpv drones, Dji doesn’t seem to sell them for som reason.

I've seen some on Bangood that seem very good for specs and price, cheaper than the DJI. Had a look at one but not sure how durable it will be if I go abroad in the next few months?

 

The Voice

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I've seen some on Bangood that seem very good for specs and price, cheaper than the DJI. Had a look at one but not sure how durable it will be if I go abroad in the next few months?


Rather go for good Chinese (DJI) than meh Chinese (Banggood). DJI also has an outstanding care/replacement program, being probably the biggest drone company out there. Also, you need to bring weight into the equation if you plan on travelling - not just for baggage weight, but also because most countries now have very harsh restrictions on anything over 250g (the one you’re looking at is over 600g).
 

JuliusSeizure

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Rather go for good Chinese (DJI) than meh Chinese (Banggood). DJI also has an outstanding care/replacement program, being probably the biggest drone company out there. Also, you need to bring weight into the equation if you plan on travelling - not just for baggage weight, but also because most countries now have very harsh restrictions on anything over 250g (the one you’re looking at is over 600g).

I see the travel vloggers mention that they often have problems with drones at airports. Just curious, do they confiscate and not return them or allow them to recollect when they leave the country?
 

The Voice

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I see the travel vloggers mention that they often have problems with drones at airports. Just curious, do they confiscate and not return them or allow them to recollect when they leave the country?

If it’s in your carry-on then probably, yeah. It’s a UAV in restricted airspace - whether it’s active or not, the potential for someone to do something nefarious with planes taking off is too high. Check it in, and pick it up on the other side.

Edit: may be country-specific laws that state whether or not you’re even allowed to bring one into the country (may be banned outright) so obviously best to check before flying.
 

bwana

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Rather go for good Chinese (DJI) than meh Chinese (Banggood). DJI also has an outstanding care/replacement program, being probably the biggest drone company out there. Also, you need to bring weight into the equation if you plan on travelling - not just for baggage weight, but also because most countries now have very harsh restrictions on anything over 250g (the one you’re looking at is over 600g).
It's a bit more complicated than that. Even drones like the Mavic mini which fall under the 250g limit will run afoul of the law in many countries because they've got cameras capable of recording people.

Then in the UK you get the C0 class which is the sub-250g drones but you also get the C1 class (250-500g) which essentially has the same relaxed regs as the C0 except you're not supposed to intentionally fly over groups of people. My Air currently falls into this class.

Then you get countries like Uganda... your drone gets to spend your trip in the company of others in a cupboard at the airport...

IMG_5321.JPG

Tl;Dr : check first. All the rules are different.

EDIT: Here in SA the regulations pretty much suck but enforcement is fairly lax.
 

The Voice

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It's a bit more complicated than that. Even drones like the Mavic mini which fall under the 250g limit will run afoul of the law in many countries because they've got cameras capable of recording people.

Then in the UK you get the C0 class which is the sub-250g drones but you also get the C1 class (250-500g) which essentially has the same relaxed regs as the C0 except you're not supposed to intentionally fly over groups of people. My Air currently falls into this class.

Then you get countries like Uganda... your drone gets to spend your trip in the company of others in a cupboard at the airport...

View attachment 1312240

Tl;Dr : check first. All the rules are different.

EDIT: Here in SA the regulations pretty much suck but enforcement is fairly lax.

Drones sold in the UK don’t currently have the C-classifications (yet), so it’s still a bit muddy. Best bet is to stick to sub-250g to avoid issues. Anything over 250g and you’re simply not legally allowed to ever fly over anyone. You can get closer to them with a special certificate, but still cannot fly over them.
 
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bwana

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Drones sold in the UK don’t currently have the C-classifications (yet), so it’s still a bit muddy. Best bet is to stick to sub-250g to avoid issues. Anything over 250g and you’re simply not legally allowed to ever fly over anyone. You can get closer to them with a special certificate, but still cannot fly over them.
Worthwhile to keep in mind should the OP be planning a trip to UK after Jan 2023. If they're planning on doing most, if not all of his flying in SA then sub-250g drones aren't going to be a benefit.

OP might want to save a little longer and get a/any DJI they provided they can find spares, especially batteries. It's becoming increasingly difficult to find Mavic Air batteries and if you do one can cost as much as the OPs spending budget.
 

gimpex

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On a similar topic , any suggestions for a beginner , looking at getting a drone for a 500ha farm. Game counts , locating specific animals , general surveillance but not security related , things like that.
 

JuliusSeizure

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On a similar topic , any suggestions for a beginner , looking at getting a drone for a 500ha farm. Game counts , locating specific animals , general surveillance but not security related , things like that.

I see that there are Chinese ones on Banggood with very good specs for cheap and Banggood seems to have a good reputation. Just want to see if anyone here has used one of those before.
 

gimpex

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I see that there are Chinese ones on Banggood with very good specs for cheap and Banggood seems to have a good reputation. Just want to see if anyone here has used one of those before.

That link you posted above ?

Doesn’t look half bad. I’d give it a try but those delivery times…. 45 days . I’ll look closer if someone offers courier
 

The Voice

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I see that there are Chinese ones on Banggood with very good specs for cheap and Banggood seems to have a good reputation. Just want to see if anyone here has used one of those before.

Banggood may have a good rep (they’re just another Aliexpress), but do your research on that drone specifically if you’re interested. Scrolled down and saw a number of people had issues with it already. Anyway, you seem set on as cheap as possible with no indication of what your specific use case is, so happy hunting.
 

neoprema

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This is one case where the laws have destroyed an innovation and its pretty much just a waste of money now.

My rather expensive DJI drone spends 90% of its life in the cupboard since 2018. The last time it was used was to take aerial views of my roof for a repair i wanted to inspect - and even then, It was actually illegal for me to do so because i live within 10KM of an air field and a plane flying low enough to wipe out every palm tree in the neighborhood might hit my drone..

Don't get me wrong, I've tried taking it on many holidays, but for the most part the laws just don't allow it to be flown so it sits in the bag the whole trip. Mostly in South Africa, EU and US.

Very nice tech, awesome when you can get it up there and shooting stuff - but its been killed by regulation.
 

airborne

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This is one case where the laws have destroyed an innovation and its pretty much just a waste of money now.

My rather expensive DJI drone spends 90% of its life in the cupboard since 2018. The last time it was used was to take aerial views of my roof for a repair i wanted to inspect - and even then, It was actually illegal for me to do so because i live within 10KM of an air field and a plane flying low enough to wipe out every palm tree in the neighborhood might hit my drone..

Don't get me wrong, I've tried taking it on many holidays, but for the most part the laws just don't allow it to be flown so it sits in the bag the whole trip. Mostly in South Africa, EU and US.

Very nice tech, awesome when you can get it up there and shooting stuff - but its been killed by regulation.

I’m assuming most YouTubers just don’t heed the rules?

Because they seem to fly those things anywhere and everywhere, city centres, Camps Bay, wherever. Locally and internationally.
 
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