Guide to Selecting a DJI Drone

Drones have become immensely popular in recent years, and there are many companies that are competing against each other in the industry. DJI has earned a name for its quality products and is popular all around the globe for the value of money it offers. DJI drones have been a popular name in the drone community for their high-quality drones. 

Since drones are used for various purposes ranging from monitoring, photography and more, it is vital that you choose one with the right features and specifications. Features, such as a high-quality 4K camera with image stabilization may be helpful if you want to take aerial photographs and record videos. But it would be an overkill if all you want is to just get into the hobby of flying drones. For that, a basic beginner drone with the essential features should suffice. This post covers some important factors to consider when selecting a DJI drone to make sure you are getting great value for the money spent.

Overview of DJI drones

A DJI Mini 2 Drone flying in the air

DJI  is a Chinese technology company specializing in manufacturing drones that can be used across different industries. DJI dominates the industry and holds around  2/3 of the consumer drones total market share, thanks to its high-quality drones and extensive catalog. Over the years, DJI has come out with various drone series, including the Flame Wheel, Phantom, Spark, Mavic, FPV, and Inspire.

Overview of DJI drones

Type of Drone Description
The Flame Wheel series. The Flame Wheel series is designed for aerial photography and was released in 2016. It includes hexacopters and quadcopters
The Phantom series. The Phantom series is a high-end drone series with Wi-Fi capabilities and integrated flight programming accompanied by a camera. They are perfect for cinematography and photography applications.
The Spark series. The Spark series by DJI was released in 2017, and each drone in this series comes with a high-quality camera and a 2-axis gimbal to stabilize it. These drones also include an infrared 3D camera that allows them to avoid obstacles.
The Mavic series. The Mavic series by DJI is by far the most popular as it includes models such as the DJI Mini 2, DJI Mavic 3, and the DJI Mavic 2.
The Inspire line.  The Inspire line by DJI includes professional camera quadcopters. They are similar to the Phantom series, but the body of the Inspire line uses aluminum and magnesium alongside carbon fiber for the arms. 
The FPV line. The FPV line is the most recent line of drones by DJI. This line includes a new hybrid drone that combines the high speed of racing drones, first-person view, cinematic cameras, and an innovative motion controller. Together, these features promise a reliable drone that you can control with single-handed movements. 

Important Factors to Consider When Buying a DJI Drone

Important Factors to Consider When Buying a DJI Drone


When choosing a drone to purchase, it is vital that you consider the purpose. Depending on what you will be using your drone for, you will need certain features and specs. Here are some of the common applications of drones. 

A man holding a DJI Mavic Mini drone

Aerial photography

Aerial photography is one of the top personal and commercial uses of drones. If you intend to use your DJI drone for this purpose, it is vital that you purchase one that comes with high-quality cameras. The better your camera is, the clearer your image will be. Drones designed for aerial photography also include an internal stabilizing mechanism that allows the bird’s eye view images to be stable and blur-free.   


The improvement in drone technology and cameras has resulted in drones being used for various filmmaking and videography purposes. If you plan to use your DJI drone to film commercials or videos, ensure that you purchase one that comes with a high-quality camera that has the capability to record in 4K with stabilization features.

Recreational use

Due to the versatility of DJI drones, they can also be used for recreational purposes such as playing games, enjoyment, and fishing. There are many small drones available on the market that can be used by children to fly in their backyards. If you want to do something exciting, you can purchase drones and practice doing stunts with them. 

For such purposes, you do not need very specialized drones, but choosing one with a longer battery life will allow you to play with it for longer. Drones can also be used when traveling, as you can use them to take images and videos for memory-keeping purposes.


A DJI Mavic 2 Pro flying in a canyon

The camera is integral to a drone as it allows you to capture images from a unique vantage point. Drone cameras have revolutionized and are now capable of capturing high-quality images. When purchasing a drone, it is vital that you purchase one that has a camera with a large sensor and a megapixel count. Ideally, it should have at least a 12MP camera. However, there are drones available that can shoot 4K, such as the DJI Mavic 3.

Many DJI drones come with high-resolution cameras that can capture 4K HDR videos and 48MP raw photos. This means that the images will be clear, and the videos will be smooth and high-quality. Some models, such as the DJI Mini 3 Pro, also allow you to shoot slow-motion video at 1080p/120fps. 

Range and Flight Time

A DJI Phantom 4 flying against the sunset

The range of a drone is how far your drone can fly without losing the signal to the controller. The optimal flight range depends on your usage. Generally, professional drones can be flown up to a range of 2km. Laws in most areas state that you should always keep your drone in sight.

The flight time of a drone is how long you can use it on a single charge. Most drones have a flight time of around 20 to 30 minutes, but it depends on various factors. These include the battery capacity of your drone, its size and weight, the motor type, and the wind effect.

When purchasing a drone, it is crucial that you purchase one that has a long range and flight time. If you plan on using it to shoot videos, you should aim to buy one that has a large battery. Large batteries can cause them to become heavier, which is why having extra batteries is always a good idea.

How High Can You Fly?

The flight altitude is another important consideration as it determines how high your drone can fly. Drones meant for commercial and personal use usually have a lower altitude than military drones to keep up with the laws and regulations. You may be tempted to purchase a drone that can fly very high and for longer distances. However, how high you can fly is limited by your local laws, which in most cases is under 500 meters.


A Mavic Air 4 with its batteries and a carrying case

DJI Drones come in all shapes and sizes. The more features it has, the larger and heavier the drone will be. If you plan on traveling with your drone, the drone you pick should be lightweight. Most drones weigh around 3 lbs or more, but models such as the Mavic Air 2 are designed to be portable, so they only weigh 1.23 lbs. 

Compact and Foldable Design

A compact and foldable drone is perfect for personal use as you can take them with you easily. Such drones come with a carrying case to house the drone and all its accessories.

Ease of transport

The more compact and lightweight your drone is, the easier it will be to carry and the more use you will get out of it. Professionals suggest that drone owners purchase a separate bag for their drone as it protects the drone and makes it easier to carry. 


Close-up of a DJI drone

Due to the large variety of drones available, you can find drones at various price points. If you want a simple drone, it can cost you around $300, but if you want one with many features and high-quality cameras, it can cost in thousands of dollars. 

Before you purchase a drone, you should set your budget and choose a drone accordingly. Since DJI drones are available at various prices, you can easily find one that fits your budget and has all the features you are looking for.  

Other Features

A DJI Mavic Mini 2 flying in the air

Other than the basic features, most drones have other valuable features as well. DJI drones have obstacle avoidance, intelligent flight modes, and other functions that set them apart from the competition. 

Obstacle avoidance

Obstacle avoidance is a handy feature included in DJI drones. It stops your drone whenever it comes into close proximity to an obstacle, such as a tree or a wall, which helps prevent your device from getting smashed into pieces. 

Intelligent flight modes

Flight modes are pre-made settings that determine how your drone will fly. DJI drones have two automatic flight modes, including standard and intelligent modes. Intelligent DJI flight modes include active track mode, hyper-lapse mode, waypoints mode, quick shot mode, gesture mode, point of interest mode, and tapfly mode.

Return-to-home functions

The return-to-home feature is a failsafe mechanism in DJI drones that allows your drone to return to its starting point. This is useful when the drone loses connection to the remote controller, the battery is low, or if you select the option to activate it. This feature is characteristic of the DJI mini 2 and prevents you from losing it. To be able to use this feature, you should set up the drone’s home point and ensure that the drone always has moderately strong GPS signals. 

Importance of choosing the right features

Since there are many features that a drone can sport, it is vital that you carefully choose a drone that has all the features you need. It can also help keep you within your budget. Drones with many features are expensive; if you don’t need them, you will be wasting your money on them.

Brand Reputation

Close up of the DJI Mavic 2 Pro

DJI is a reputable brand known for producing unmanned vehicles for recreational and commercial purposes. With many DJI drones available in the market, the brand has gained customer trust through its reasonable pricing and responsiveness to market needs. 

Proven track record of producing high-quality drones

DJI has a proven track record of offering innovative and high-quality drones. This means that they are always releasing drones with the latest technology that offer a great customer experience. DJI has also partnered with Microsoft, allowing you to access the Microsoft ecosystem via an SDK. The company has reinvented how people shoot aerial videos, which sets them apart from other companies producing low-quality drones.

Reliable performance and customer support

DJI is the world’s leading manufacturer of civilian drones, and their products are known to have reliable performance. The drones also come with a warranty, so you can request online repair requests and send your DJI drone to the DJI repair center to get it repaired or replaced. 


1. Can you fly DJI drones without a license?

You need to have a license to fly drones, but if your drone is lighter than 250 grams, you can fly it without one. The DJI Mini series is 249 grams, so you can fly drones from this series without any issues. 

2. Do DJI drones need Wi-Fi to fly?

Not necessarily. DJI drones need a controller to fly, but wi-fi might be required for some functions such as connecting with a smartphone.

3. Can drones be flown near an airport?

No. Ideally, you should not fly your drone near airports and heliports, and you should always stay clear of flying objects.

4. Can I fly my DJI in windy conditions?

When flying a drone, you should avoid windy conditions. A general rule of thumb isthat the wind should not be two-thirds of the maximum speed of the drone. 


DJI drones are popular in the drone industry thanks to their high-quality construction and plethora of features. DJI produces reliable drones with high-quality cameras, and have features such as intelligent modes, obstacle avoidance, and return-to-home functions that set them apart from other drones in the industry. In the end, it all comes down to your own requirements, budget, spare parts availability and personal preferences, so consider these for making a more informed decision.