- Best Foldable Drones 2021
- 1. Contixo F22 RC Foldable Quadcopter Drone
- 2. Holy Stone HS175D GPS Drone with 4K Camera
- 3. SYMA X500 Mini Foldable Drone
- 4. Ruko F11Gim Folding Drone
- 5. DJI Mini 2 Foldable Drone with Camera
- 6. Parrot Anafi Folding Drone
- 7. DJI Mavic Air 2 Foldable Drone
- 8. DJI Air 2S Compact Drone
- 9. DJI Mavic 2 Pro Folding Drone
- 10. Autel Evo 2 Pro Folding Drone
- Why are Foldable Drones so popular?
- What to look for in a Foldable Drone
- FAQ About Folding Drones
Foldable drones with cameras are the latest evolution in drone design and almost all of today’s consumer drone models have this unique feature. This allows users to carry these compact drones in their pockets or backpack for easy access when the need arises and also helps to lower the chance of damage to the arms and motors while in transit.
These collapsible drones are packed with the latest automated flight modes and upgraded cameras with image stabilization technology, some of the high end models also feature obstacle avoidance and gimbal mounted cameras.
Folding drone prices have come down to were most people who want to enjoy aerial photography when traveling can do so without breaking the bank. While DJI still leads the market in high tech drones, other consumer drone manufacturers have released models that are a little more budget-friendly and offer many popular features.
It’s 2021 and there are lots of options when it comes to foldable drones. The following list of the best foldable drones is based on quality and reliability. Below the list you will also find some great tips on what to look for when buying a folding drone.
Best Foldable Drones 2021
The Contixo F22 is one of the best cheap foldable drones with a camera and GPS for the money. This small, compact, foldable drone is a great drone for beginners at just under $150.
- Folding props
- 1-Key Takeoff/ Landing
- Selfie, Gesture, Follow Me, Waypoint
- First Person View -FPV
- GPS Auto Return
- Carrying Case
CAMERA: 2K FHD BATTERY: 20 MIN. FPV RANGE: 750 FT.
The Holy Stone HS175D foldable mini drone offers many Intelligent functions like return home when the drone has lost signal or out of range. Weights under 250g for easy storage and travelling, Speed Adjustment makes it easy for newbies to fly. Available for under $200.
- Circle, Waypoint, Follow Me mode
- Gesture Control
- GPS Auto Return
- First Person View
- Brushless Motors
- 2 Batteries
- Carrying Case
CAMERA: 4K BATTERY: 23 MIN. FPV RANGE: 984 FT.
The SYMA X500 4K Drone is a lightweight yet powerful drone for Adults and Beginners. Features an adjustable 90° UHD Camera along with an excellent array of features, including VR Mode through the Syma APP. The rechargeable remote eliminates the need for AA batteries. Also has a 64 GB capacity SD card slot and includes a nice carrying case. A good value priced under $250.
The Ruko F11Gim is the latest version in the F11 series. Upgrades include a 2-Axis gimbal with EIS (Electric Image Stabilization) technology that will provide you incredible clear and stable video along with the ability to zoom in for more detail. If you are in the market for a super fun to fly drone that will take decent video and offers some of the latest features, this is the drone for you. The updated app also has voice alerts that let you know when the drone is getting out of range or the battery is running low. Priced under $400 and is backed by top rated Ruko customer service.
- 2-axis gimbal mounted camera
- 2 Batteries for 56 Mins Flight Time
- Brushless Motors
- 5 times Zoom
- GPS Auto Return Home
- Intelligent Flight Modes
CAMERA: 4K BATTERY: 28 MIN. FPV RANGE: 1900 FT.
The Mini 2 is compact and convenient. This small drone comes with many quality upgrades. The transmission system has been updated to DJI’s OcuSync 2.0, which allows for smoother live video feed and a longer control range. Offers improved camera performance for those looking for more professional-looking content. The 4x digital zoom makes it safer and more convenient when recording your subject without flying too close. The DJI Fly app now includes 4K Hyperlapse and Panorama making it possible for beginners to shoot Hollywood-level videos with ease. Perfect for entry-level drone photographers. The best folding drone you can buy for less than $500 and makes an ideal travel companion.
- Ultralight Foldable Drone
- 3-Axis Motorized Gimbal
- 12MP Photos
- OcuSync 2.0 10km HD Video Transmission
- 4X digital zoom
- 5 Quickshots
CAMERA: 4K BATTERY: 31 MIN. FPV RANGE: 6 miles.
DJI Mini 2 Fly More Combo: Includes 2 extra batteries, Spare Propellers (Pair) ×3, Two-Way Charging Hub and Shoulder Bag
Parrot is one of the first company’s that made consumer drones and although they have discontinued most them, the Anafi is definitely their most impressive drone to date. It has a unique design for a foldable drone, in its folded form it is longer and slimmer than most other drones. The camera can pitch up for a shot not found on other consumer drones. It’s easy to fly and control, even in windy conditions. It comes with some very impressive features and a well-developed drone app. A quality built drone available for under $700.
- Camera with 180° vertical swivel
- Unique zoom capabilities
- Skycontroller 3 with 2 hour battery life
- HDR support
- Smart flight modes
- 3-axis hybrid gimbal
- Stylish and Durable Case
CAMERA: 4K BATTERY: 25 MIN. FPV RANGE: 2 miles
The DJI Mavic Air 2 Drone takes power and portability to the next level. Offers the latest in video transmission technology for smooth live video feed. It boasts a range of intelligent shooting modes for stunning results. Features that include image tracking, Obstacle sensing in three directions for improved safety and low battery, automatic return to home is a bonus for beginners. Spotlight 2.0 keeps the camera locked on a subject while you fly freely. ActiveTrack 3.0 keeps subjects centered. POI 3.0 tracks moving subjects like people and vehicles. Aerial photography has never been this easy.
A Great little Folding selfie drone that you can purchase for just under $800.
- Camera 1/2″ CMOS Sensor
- Obstacle Avoidance
- 3-Axis Gimbal
- Spotlight 2.0
- ActiveTrack 3.0
- Ocusync 2.0
- POI 3.0
CAMERA: 4K BATTERY: 34 MIN. FPV RANGE: 6 miles.
DJI Mavic Air 2 Combo Deals
DJI Mavic Air 2 Fly More Combo – Includes 3 Intelligent Flight Battery, 6 Pair Low-Noise Propellers, Battery Charging Hub, Battery to Power Bank Adapter and Shoulder Bag.
DJI Mavic Air 2 Fly More Combo with DJI Smart Controller -Has a 5.5-inch built-in screen that displays clear, bright images, even under challenging conditions. Offers intuitive controls and pre-installed features like SkyTalk and the DJI GO 4 App.
The DJI Air 2S Drone has improved Performance, intelligent features, obstacle sensing, and better transmission system. Upgrades include a 1-inch CMOS sensor, the best camera to date on a small mini drone. The new transmission solution, OcuSync O3 has four antennas and supports two frequency bands for more reliable transmission. It features stronger interference resistance that can deliver video feeds at up to 7.5 miles, giving you an ultra-smooth, clear, and reliable image feed every time you fly. APAS 4.0, added upward-facing dual-vision sensors and MasterShots, an advanced intelligent feature that gives users the best shots in any location with just the push of a button. Probably the Best Foldable Drone produced in 2021 for under $1000.
- 3-Axis Gimbal Camera
- 5.4K Video
- 1-Inch CMOS Sensor
- 4 Directions of Obstacle Sensing
- 8* Digital zoom
CAMERA: 1″ CMOS BATTERY: 31 MIN. FPV RANGE: 7.5 miles.
The DJI Mavic 2 Pro Drone is one of the first professional folding drones on the market and a top choice among many expert photographers. Equipped with a Hasselblad L1D-20c camera and a 20MP 1” CMOS Sensor, the Mavic 2 camera drone lets you capture gorgeous aerial shots in stunning color detail. Features 8GB internal storage and SD card Support up to 128 GB. The standard remote controller offers up to 135 minutes of battery life on a full charge. A high quality flying camera with the best features for pros and novice looking to up their game for under $1300.
- Hasselblad L1D-20c Camera with 1-inch CMOS sensor
- Improved Flight Autonomy system
- Auto takeoff, landing and return to home
- Obstacle Avoidance Technology
- 3-Axis Gimbal
CAMERA: 1″ CMOS BATTERY: 31 MIN. FPV RANGE: 11 Miles.
Powered by a 1/2.3-inch 12MP sensor with up to 4x zoom, including a 2x optical zoom, The Mavic 2 Zoom camera drone is all about dynamic perspectives. A great foldable drone for Expert Quality Photography under $1400
The Evo 2 Pro aerial camera is a drone made for professionals. Provides sharper images, greater detail and richer color for Maximum Performance & Endless Possibilities. Offers 360° Obstacle Avoidance, Hyperlapse Recording and 32GB internal storage, all in a Low-Noise, User-Friendly, bright orange Design. The Remote Controller has a Built-in 3.3 inch OLED Display that offers up to 180 minutes of battery life on a full charge, The Autel Explorer App delivers a live stream, enhanced flight and camera controls to your mobile device. The Evo 2 Pro has strong wind resistance and available now for under $1700.
- 1-inch Sony sensor
- 20MP still images ( Raw & JPEG)
- 6K@30FPS, 4K@60FPS, 2.7@120fps
- Adjustable aperture
- 8* digital zoom (3*lossless)
- Hyper-light technology
- Intelligent flight modes
- 5-way obstacle avoidance system
- Landing Pad Included
CAMERA: 1″ CMOS BATTERY: 40 MIN. FPV RANGE: 5.5 miles.
Why are Foldable Drones so popular?
Small collapsible drones with 4K cameras and intelligent flight modes have become the most popular drones on the market. The lower price range of these lightweight, foldable drones has contributed greatly to their popularity in the last couple of years.
Portability is without question the biggest selling point. Couple this with a good carrying case and you have a drone that you can just throw inside your backpack or pocket for easy access when needed.
Easy to use, a little time spent to become familiar with the controller and the APP’s features, along with some practice and you can be capturing astonishing aerial pics and video. Foldable drones with modern features like Beginner Mode and GPS-aided stabilization, have made it possible for everyone to enjoy flying a drone.
Inexpensive models are now available that offer the quality and features that use to only be found in professional drones. No matter what your budget is, there’s probably a foldable drone out there that you can afford.
What to look for in a Foldable Drone
Check the photo and video resolution. Many foldable drones now come with cameras in the 1080p to 4K range, with 5 – 12 megapixels of photo resolution. Also look for how the camera is mounted, low cost models have cameras that move up or down a few degrees, while more expensive models feature a gimbal mounted camera.
Battery life = Flight Time, The more batteries you have, the longer you can fly your drone. This is why it is a good idea to invest in a few extra batteries.
Brushless motors are now among the latest upgrades on many foldable drones, they offer a longer lifespan and operate with less noise.
Smart Flight Modes and Features
Popular features include: Altitude Hold, Headless Mode, One button to take off and landing, Return To Home. S-Mode (Sport), Beginner Mode and Gesture mode
Smart flight modes enable your drone to fly itself autonomously, Some of the most popular are Follow Me Mode, Point of Interest and Waypoints.
Here are flight modes offered by DJI for comparison
DJI INTELLIGENT FLIGHT MODES – Course Lock Mode, Home Lock Mode, Point of Interest Mode, ActiveTrack Mode, TapFly Mode, Waypoints Mode, Follow Me Mode, Cinematic Mode, Tripod Mode, Fixed Wing Mode, Terrain Follow Mode and Draw Mode
QuickShot shooting modes include Dronie, Circle, Helix, Rocket, Boomerang, Asteroid
Smartphone App or Remote Control
The two main ways to pilot a drone is with an app on your smartphone and/or a remote control. The app allows for full control of the drone, It also allows access to intelligent flight modes.
A model that relies on a mobile app for control often has limits on its range and FPV capability. A model with a remote control paired with an APP gives you better control and the freedom to fly a longer distance away.
A drone’s range is the distance at which you’re able to control it using your smartphone or remote. A low cost drone might have a range of about 20 to 100 yards, while a high-end foldable drone can have a range of 2 to 5 miles. However, flying beyond your line of sight is not recommended.
FPV (First Person View) Mode
This allows you to see what your drone sees in real time. An important element of FPV is video transmission, high-end models offer a better lag-free experience.
While most new pilots view FPV on their smart phones, FPV goggles can put you in the pilot seat, providing a real in flight feeling.
Most new foldable drones are equipped with safety features to help the pilot avoid problems during flight, Features like Auto Return Home, which enables your drone to automatically return to its takeoff point when it either runs out of battery or loses signal connection.
Although limited to the more expensive folding drones, obstacle avoidance can give your drone the ability to detect and avoid many of the obstructions it might encounter.
Most foldable drones are equipped with technologies that assist with flight stability. These include optical cameras and infrared sensors to help maintain altitude and GPS to help maintain positioning.
A factor most people do not consider is size. Small foldable drones are easy to carry and fly indoors but lack the stability needed to obtain a consistent hover in moderate wind conditions, While larger folding drones that are slightly heavier operate better in outdoor conditions.
FAQ About Folding Drones
What is a Foldable Drone?
A foldable drone has collapsible arms and props that fold into the body for a compact, easy fit in your pocket or backpack. This design also aids in preventing damage to the drone between flights.
What is the Best Foldable Drone?
The DJI Mavic 2 Pro Drone or Zoom would be the choice of most experienced flyers.
What Is The Best Foldable Drone For Beginners?
The SYMA X500 4K Foldable Drone is a good starter drone for beginners with features and a price most people can afford.
What Is The Best Foldable Drone For The Money?
The DJI Mavic Air 2 Foldable Drone offers a nice mix of features and quality for the price.
Why buy a Foldable Drone?
Foldable drones have became the norm, like laptops and smartphones. Used by many photographers and videographers, vloggers and travelers looking for a compact easy to carry flying camera. Homeowners, homesteaders and farmers, for aerial inspections of property and livestock. Hikers, Campers and people taking family vacations or road trips with friends. Having a foldable drone stored inside your travel case or backpack that you can simply take out, set up quickly and start capturing breathtaking aerial photographs can be very handy.
Do I need to register my Foldable Drone?
Only drones weighting over 250g need to be registered with the FAA.
Do I need a Landing Pad?
Most of these drones have little ground clearance and therefore we recommend a landing pad to help avoid blowing around ground debris during take off and insure a flat designated landing area.
Conclusion: Foldable Drones
With a wide range of premium quality foldable drones now available from as low as $200 all the way up to $1800, it really depends on what best fits your needs and your budget when deciding which one to buy.