The Best Drones for 2024

As technology advances, drones are increasingly revolutionizing fields like photography, delivery, and agriculture. In 2024, the drone market introduces innovative models that enhance capabilities, efficiency, and performance. Our comprehensive guide reviews the standout drones of the year, suitable for everyone from hobbyists with high-resolution cameras to professionals needing reliable survey tools. We’ve selected these drones based on innovation, user-friendliness, battery life, and overall value, helping you make a well-informed choice tailored to your needs. This guide covers options for all levels, from beginners to “prosumer” enthusiasts, and includes affordable, high-quality camera drones under $500. We also provide a detailed buying guide and FAQs to aid your decision, ensuring you stay ahead in the dynamic world of drone technology.

The folLowing drones, rigorously evaluated and recommended by CNET, are our leading selections for enhancing your photography and videography with dynamic aerial perspectives.

                                                         DJI Air 3

The best all-round drone for aerial photographers

The DJI Air 3, bridging the Mini and Mavic Pro series, adheres to Europe’s C1 category with a 720g takeoff weight. It boasts a 3x telephoto lens, dual cameras for enhanced image quality, and a 46-minute flight time perfect for travel photography and capturing stunning environments.


FAA Compliant: The DJI Air 3 meets FAA Remote ID requirements; details and registration information are available on the FAA’s website.

  • Enhanced Safety: Equipped with omnidirectional obstacle sensing, the Air 3 offers worry-free flying even in challenging locations.
  • High-Quality Images: It captures 48MP photos, allowing for detailed cropping and high-quality image output.
  • Vivid Footage: The drone records in 4K/60fps HDR, providing vibrant colors and lifelike detail in videos.
  • Stable Transmission: Features a six-antenna array for stable 1080p/60fps video transmission up to 20 km.
  • Extended Flight Package: The Fly More Combo includes the drone, three batteries, a charging hub, and the DJI RC 2, enhancing flight time and experience.

DJI Mini 3 Pro

Best drone for TikTok videos and Instagram Reels

The DJI Mini 4 Pro improves on its predecessor with better low-light performance and advanced color profiles, while maintaining a compact, 249g foldable design. a new D-Log M color profile. It retains a lightweight, foldable design with a 249g takeoff weight and adds omnidirectional obstacle avoidance and ActiveTrack 360° for easier handling with Max Ascent Speed: 8 m/s.


Pro Shots: Delivers 4K/60fps video and 48MP photos with advanced light sensitivity and f/1.7 aperture.
Perfect Portraits: Enables True Vertical Shooting with a 90-degree gimbal for optimal portrait images.

  • Extended Flight: Offers up to 34 minutes of flight time for broader exploration.
  • Enhanced Safety: Features tri-directional obstacle sensing and APAS 4.0 for superior safety.
  • Smart Features: Packed with intelligent functionalities like FocusTrack, MasterShots, and more.
  • Advanced Controller: Includes the new DJI RC with built-in app and 5.5-inch HD display, ideal for bright conditions. Max Wind Speed Resistance: 10.7 m/s.

DJI Mavic 3
Best drone for serious photographers

The DJI Mavic 3, with a starting price of $2,000, is more expensive but offers superior photography capabilities, making it a worthwhile investment for professionals. It features a large 4/3-size image sensor for enhanced light capture and dynamic range, delivering stunning 5.1K-resolution videos and excellent exposure control.

  • Advanced Imaging: The DJI Mavic 3 sports a 4/3 CMOS Hasselblad Camera for professional-quality captures with a 12.8-stop dynamic range. Max Flight Distance: 30 km, Max Ceiling: 6000 m.
  • 46 Minutes of Flight: Achieve extensive aerial coverage with up to 46 minutes of flight per battery.
  • Fly Safer: Features advanced Omnidirectional Obstacle Sensing for confident and safe maneuvering.
  • Extended Reach: Boasts a 15-km transmission range with O3 Plus system for stable, far-reaching live feeds.
  • Smart Return to Home: Incorporates an advanced RTH system for a fast and safe return to the launch point on command or in case of low battery.

DJI mini 3

Best drone for TikTok videos and Instagram Reels

The DJI Mini 3 Pro excels in versatile content creation with its unique ability to switch to portrait orientation for social media-ready 4K videos and 48MP photos. Compact and equipped with advanced sensors for safe navigation, its folding design enhances portability. Despite its lightweight (249g), it is sensitive to strong winds, which may impact flight stability and duration. This drone is ideal for content creators seeking a high-resolution, user-friendly aerial camera.

  • Extended Flight Time: Flight time can reach up to 51 minutes with the Intelligent Flight Battery Plus, though it increases the drone’s weight above 249g.
  • Stunning 4K HDR Video: Capture crystal-clear aerial footage with detailed highlights and shadows, suitable for day and night filming.
  • Vertical Video Capture: True Vertical Shooting allows for perfect captures of tall structures, ready for direct posting to social platforms like Instagram and TikTok.
  • Creative Shooting Modes: Utilize QuickShots for dynamic flight paths and Panorama for expansive views.
  • Strong Wind Resistance: Mini 3 offers stability in up to 38kph winds, ensuring steady captures.
  • Enhanced Controller: Includes the new DJI RC with a pre-installed DJI Fly App and a 5.5-inch HD display for clear viewing in sunlight.

DJI Avata

Best FPV drone for exhilarating first-person flying

The DJI Avata is a compact FPV drone designed for immersive, high-speed flying with FPV goggles, allowing pilots to navigate through complex environments for dynamic footage. The Avata is operated with a motion controller for intuitive “point-and-click” flying, making it ideal for capturing thrilling aerial videos. Offers 18 minutes of flight time with robust built-in propeller guards for enhanced safety and durability.

  • Thrilling Flight Experience: The DJI Avata offers total immersion with intuitive controls using the goggles and motion controller, making flying accessible to everyone. Operating Temperature Range: -10° to 40° C.
  • Superior 4K Footage: Equipped with a 1/1.7-inch sensor and 155° FOV, the Avata captures ultra-smooth 4K footage with advanced stabilization.
  • Advanced Transmission Technology: Features DJI O3+ video transmission for a clear HD live feed up to 10 km away.
  • Versatile Compatibility: Works with DJI Goggles 2, FPV Goggles V2, FPV Remote Control 2, and Motion Control to vary your flying style.
  • Inclusive Package: Comes with DJI FPV Goggles V2 and DJI Motion Controller, providing a cost-effective, immersive flight setup.

Things to Know Before Buying a Drone In India

Drones have gained popularity over the last decade, becoming a staple for hobbyists, aerial enthusiasts, photographers, and videographers. They offer unique perspectives for capturing images and videos that stand out. If you’re considering purchasing a drone, either as a hobby or to enhance your business, here are 10 important factors to consider before making your investment.


If you’re using a drone for fun or commercial photography and videography, you must register it. Drones over 250 grams require additional registration steps for commercial use

Know Where to Fly

Here are essential guidelines for flying your drone:

  • Do not fly within five miles of any airport.
  • Keep your drone below 400 feet.
  • Avoid flying over government facilities or national parks.
  • Obtain permission before flying over private property as a courtesy.
Drone Varieties

When choosing a drone, familiarize yourself with common types based on their readiness for flight:

  • RTF (Ready-to-Fly): Minimal setup required; attach propellers and charge batteries.
  • BNF (Bind-to-Fly): Arrives assembled without a controller; requires a separate controller purchase or a smartphone app.
  • ARF (Almost-Ready-to-Fly): Kits missing critical components like motors and batteries, ideal for customization but need additional parts.
  • FPV (First-Person-Video): Captures and transmits live footage to devices, favored by photographers for landscape shots.
Weather conditions

Consider the weather conditions in your area before purchasing a drone. If you live in a windy area, choose a drone capable of handling wind gusts, as many models can only withstand up to 20 mph winds. Additionally, opt for a water and weatherproof drone to ensure functionality in various conditions. For optimal flying, clear skies and minimal wind are ideal.


When buying a drone for photography or videography, prioritize stability, crucial for capturing clear images. Ensure the drone can hover steadily; models with a gimbal are recommended for maintaining stability while shooting.

Drone Purchase Costs

When incorporating a drone into your photography or video production gear, consider your budget carefully. Lower-priced drones often offer less stability and harder control, affecting image quality. Higher-end drones provide enhanced stability and smoother flight for better imagery but can be costly. Determine your budget and decide which special features are essential and which you can forego.

Flight Timing

Most drones have a flight time of around 30 minutes, which may feel limited for aerial photography. Longer flight times come at a higher cost. To maximize efficiency and save money, plan your drone flights carefully to make the most of the available flight time, rather than paying more for extended duration.


“Green zone” refers to airspace up to 400 feet AGL not designated as red or yellow zones, and up to 200 feet AGL within 8-12 kilometers of an airport. Above these limits in green zones, yellow zone rules apply.

“Red zone” describes airspace over India where drone operations are restricted to exceptional cases approved by the Central Government.

“Yellow zone” is controlled airspace requiring air traffic control permission for drone operations.


Remote pilot licenses must specify the drone class and whether the holder is trained for automatic or autonomous operations. Eligibility for a license includes being between 18 and 65 years old, having passed at least tenth grade from a recognized board, and completing the required training from an authorized organization. Licenses are issued digitally within seven days of passing a proficiency test at an authorized training center. No license is needed for operating nano drones or non-commercial micro drones.

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The 2024 lineup of drones excels with advanced technology and enhanced user-friendliness, serving both hobbyists and professionals. These drones boast superior imaging and stabilization, suited for various budgets and needs. With their cutting-edge features, the latest models redefine industry standards, promising outstanding performance and accessibility for all users.


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