4K Drone for the Best Captures! [2021]

Drones have been gaining popularity in recent years, especially in the aerial photography and videography field. 

Ever since the introduction of the first batch of commercial drones on the market, these machines have not stopped evolving and improving. 

Today, you can find drones with incredibly advanced features that were once thought impossible for such a small remote-controlled unit. 

Some of these drones are equipped with ultra-high-definition 4K cameras that allow videographers to level up their videography game. 

Filmmakers especially are loving these 4K drone cameras since they can capture sharp and crystal-clear aerial footage at a fraction of the cost of hiring a helicopter or airplane.

In this article, we’ll be looking at some of the best 4K drones you can find. 

Drone

Features

Price

DJI Phantom 4 PRO Plus V2.0 Quadcopter Drone with 1-inch...
  • Flight range: 4.3 miles
  • Flight Time: 30 minutes
  • Weight: 3 pounds
DJI Mavic 2 PRO Drone Quadcopter with Fly More Kit Combo...
  • Flight range: 11.1 miles
  • Flight Time: 31 minutes
  • Weight: 1.64 pounds
DJI Mavic 2 Zoom Drone Quadcopter with Fly More Kit Combo...
  • Flight range: 4.97miles
  • Flight Time: 31 minutes
  • Weight: 2.1 pounds
DJI Mavic Air 2 - Drone Quadcopter UAV with 48MP Camera 4K...
  • Flight range: 11.4 miles
  • Flight Time: 34 minutes
  • Weight: 1.26 pounds
Yuneec Typhoon H3 Hexacopter with 1' Sensor 4K Camera, ST16S...
  • Flight range: 1.24 miles
  • Flight Time: 25 minutes
  • Weight: 16.25 pounds
Parrot PF728000 ANAFI Drone, Foldable Quadcopter Drone with...
  • Flight range: 2.5 miles
  • Flight Time: 25 minutes
  • Weight: 1.56 pounds

Best 4K drone

DJI Phantom 4 PRO Plus V2.0 Quadcopter Drone with 1-inch...
  • Flight range: 4.3 miles
  • Flight Time: 30 minutes
  • Weight: 3 pounds

The DJI Phantom 4 Pro Plus comes from one of the most popular drone makers in the industry.

DJI has been dominating the commercial drone market for a long time now and this unit is just another reason why.

The Phantom 4 Pro Plus comes with some of the most advanced imaging features you possibly find on a drone.

This is what makes it the best 4k drone on the market.

Professional videographers can take advantage of the enhanced video processing system and a powerful 3-axis gimbal-stabilized camera.

The camera is fitted with a 1-inch CMOS sensor capable of capturing DCI 4K videos at 60fps and 20-megapixel photos.

The 8mm/ 24mm wide-angle lens with a maximum aperture of f/2.8 has an 84 degrees field of view.

Other features include 5 intelligent flight modes including TapFly, ActiveTrack, Gesture and Return to Home.

Some of these make capturing shots easy since you can focus on capturing the best shot instead of flying the drone.

The advanced flight control system on this unit uses the camera, several vision sensors, GPS, GLONASS and others for reliable flights with accurate obstacle sensing and avoidance.

DJI Phantom 4 PRO Plus V2.0 Quadcopter Drone with 1-inch...
  • Kit Includes: 1- DJI Phantom 4 PRO+ V2. 0 Quadcopter Drone, 1- Handheld Transmitter with Built in...
  • Camera with 1-inch 20MP sensor the onboard camera has been redesigned to use a 1-inch Megapixel CMOS...
  • Five-directions of obstacle sensing, Remote controller with the Phantom 4 Pro controller integrates...
  • All-new DJI Phantom 4 Pro camera with 1-inch 20MP Exmor R CMOS sensor. Longer flight time, 30...
  • 4. 3mi (7km) Control Range. 100 Feet (30m) Sensor Range. Smart Return Home allows the Phantom 4 Pro...

DJI Mavic 2 PRO Drone Quadcopter with Fly More Kit Combo...
  • Flight range: 11.1 miles
  • Flight Time: 31 minutes
  • Weight: 1.64 pounds

The DJI Mavic 2 Pro is yet another powerful unit from DJI.

It is a slightly older unit and was released in 2018 but it still holds its own today.

The folding design of the Mavic series made those units very portable but the Mavic 2 series is far heavier.

This means that you should think twice before taking this drone if you are going hiking, etc.

However, if you want a drone with a superb camera, then the Mavic 2 Pro is a great option.

Moving on to the camera, the Mavic 2 Pro features a 1 inch Hasselblad sensor for capturing crisp 4K videos and detailed 20MP photos.

Meanwhile, the 3-axis gimbal keeps making sure that everything looks super smooth and distortion-free.

It uses OcuSync 2.0  that allows operation and video transmission up to a whopping 11.1 miles.

As impressive as the range is the flight time which is stated to be around 31 minutes.

There’s also Sport Mode which sees this unit reaching speeds up to 72kph in no wind conditions.

Like the DJI unit before, this one also comes with several intelligent flight modes that allow you to focus on controlling the camera instead of the positioning of the drone.

DJI Mavic 2 PRO Drone Quadcopter with Fly More Kit Combo...
  • See the bigger picture: equipped with a Hasselblad l1d-20c camera with a 20MP 1” CMOS sensor, The...
  • Please Update the firmware version of your Mavic 2 to 01.00.00.00 or above via the app tips or DJI...
  • Up to 31 minutes flight time, 44 mph max speed, 907G takeoff weight, 3-axis gimbal for steady shots,...
  • Functions include active track 2.0, omnidirectional obstacle sensing, Hyper lapse, low-noise design,...
  • With fly More kit: comes with 2 extra intelligent Flight batteries, Mavic 2 car charger, battery...

DJI Mavic 2 Zoom Drone Quadcopter with Fly More Kit Combo...
  • Flight range: 4.97miles
  • Flight Time: 31 minutes
  • Weight: 2.1 pounds

DJI launched the Mavic 2 Pro and Zoom around the same time.

The Mavic 2 Zoom uses the same airframe as the Mavic 2 Pro but comes with a different camera.

Although the camera is not as good as the Mavic 2 Pro and you get lower quality imagery, the Mavic 2 Zoom comes with an awesome zoom feature that can’t be beaten.

This unit is powered by a 1/2.3-inch CMOS 12MP sensor with up to four times zoom.

This includes a two-times optical zoom.

Most drones offer digital camera zoom that crops in on pixels to change your view.

However, the Mavic 2 comes with optical zoom which means the glass lens provides the change in the field of view.

This leads to higher-quality zoomed images.

To help with that is the 3-axis gimbal that helps steady your shots.

Other than the camera and excellent zoom features, you get 31 minutes of flight time and a transmission range of up to 4.97 miles.

In keeping with DJI’s trend, the Mavic 2 Zoom also comes with semi-autonomous features like ActiveTrack, etc.

Sale
DJI Mavic 2 Zoom Drone Quadcopter with Fly More Kit Combo...
  • Please update the firmware version of your Mavic 2 to 01.00.00.00 or above via the App tips or DJI...
  • See the Bigger Picture: Powered by a 1/2.3 inch CMOS 12MP sensor with up to four-times zoom,...
  • Up to 31 minutes flight time, 44 mph max speed, 905g takeoff weight, 3-axis gimbal for steady shots,...
  • Functions include ActiveTrack 2.0, Dolly Zoom, Omnidirectional Obstacle Sensing, Hyperlapse,...
  • With Fly More Kit: Mavic 2 Zoom Set + 2 extra Intelligent Flight Batteries, Mavic 2 Car Charger,...

DJI Mavic Air 2 - Drone Quadcopter UAV with 48MP Camera 4K...
  • Flight range: 11.4 miles
  • Flight Time: 34 minutes
  • Weight: 1.26 pounds

We have yet another DJI unit on the list which should come as no surprise.

The DJI Mavic Air 2 is one of the most compact and affordable 4K drones that you should consider.

The compact size makes it ideal for those who are always on the go.

It is super small and lightweight to toss into your backpack so you always have it handy whenever you want to capture some videos.

This 4k quadcopter combines a powerful camera and intelligent flight features to produce stunning results that push your imagination to its limits.

It comes with a ½ inch high-performance Quad Bayer image sensor that captures highly detailed 48-megapixel photos and 4K/60fps videos.

Meanwhile, the 3-axis gimbal keeps everything smooth and steady.

The Mavic Air 2 also comes with OcuSync 2.0 which allows it to have a transmission distance of up to an incredible 11.49 miles away.

It can also deliver a 1080P FHD resolution live feed directly from its camera.

You can get around 34 minutes of flight time which is longer than any of the DJI drones mentioned in this list.

Other than these, the Mavic Air 2 has some intuitive shooting functions that make aerial photography easy for almost anyone.

DJI Mavic Air 2 - Drone Quadcopter UAV with 48MP Camera 4K...
  • 【UP YOUR GAME】: The Mavic Air 2 camera drone takes power and portability to the next level. It...
  • 【NEXT-LEVEL CONTENT】: Capture impressive 48MP photos with a 1/2-inch CMOS sensor while the...
  • 【IMPROVED FLIGHT】: An impressive flight time of up to 34 minutes allows you to pull off epic,...
  • 【INTELLIGENT TRACKING】: Mavic Air 2 features intuitive shooting functions that make aerial...
  • 【APP COMPATIBILITY】: The DJI Fly app requires iOS v10.0, Android v6.0, or above. Compatible...
  • 【WHAT YOU GET】: Mavic Air 2 Aircraft, Remote Controller, Intelligent Flight Battery, 3x...
  • 【VIDEO CAPTURE RESOLUTION】: 4K Hd

Yuneec Typhoon H3 Hexacopter with 1' Sensor 4K Camera, ST16S...
  • Flight range: 1.24 miles
  • Flight Time: 25 minutes
  • Weight: 16.25 pounds

The Yuneec Typhoon H3 Hexacopter is a high-performance unit geared towards professional aerial photographers and videographers.

It offers several options to create incredible visual content that’s sure to impress.

This unit is huge and quite heavy but features retractable arms for ease of transport.

The design, stability, reliability and big Leica camera puts it a few steps ahead of some DJI drones

Yunnec sometimes offers payload upgrades over time so that means this airframe may be able to fly if ever you need a bigger and better camera.

Let’s take a look at the Yuneec Typhoon H3 specs.

It is equipped with an ION L1 Pro camera co-engineered with Leica to capture sharp 20MP photos and 4K videos.

These are perfectly stabilized, thanks to the 3-axis gimbal.

It has a range of up to 1.24 miles and a flight time of about 25 minutes.

Aside from these, this unit comes with a safety feature and flight functions to offer a sophisticated and well-coordinated unit to realize all your aerial photo and video dreams.

One safety feature that is worth mentioning is the fail-safe rotor function.

If one rotor fails, the other 5 automatically compensate for it, keep the unit in the sky and give you time to land the hexacopter safely.

Sale
Yuneec Typhoon H3 Hexacopter with 1" Sensor 4K Camera, ST16S...
  • Typhoon H3 Hexacopter - ION L1 Pro Camera Co-Engineered with Leica - ST16S Ground Station Controller...
  • Sturdy hexacopter with 6 rotors & up to 25 minutes flight time
  • Retractable arms for ease of transportation
  • PX4-based flight controller
  • Cruise control for controlled shots

Parrot PF728000 ANAFI Drone, Foldable Quadcopter Drone with...
  • Flight range: 2.5 miles
  • Flight Time: 25 minutes
  • Weight: 1.56 pounds

The Parrot Anafi is ultra-compact and ultra-lightweight which makes it possibly the most portable 4K video drone out there.

It even has a USB Type-C charging system that reflects the drone’s portability.

You can charge the drone’s battery with a power bank or your computer or phone USB Type-C charging system.

It unfolds in less than 3 seconds and can reach speeds of 55 mph in Sports Mode.

This unit comes with a camera equipped with an f/2.4 wide-angle ASPH lens, 2.8 digital zoom and a180 degrees tilt gimbal.

It is capable of capturing 4k videos, Full HD or 2.7 K videos as well as 21Mp photos.

When paired with the Parrot Skycontroller 3, the Anafi has a range of up to 2.5 miles.

The flight time is said to be about 25 minutes.

It delivers a safe flight experience with Geofence that helps you define your virtual perimeters so you never fly in areas you’re not supposed to.

Anafi uses an amazing AI and visual tracking system with tons of advanced features.

You can download the FreeFlight 6 app and take advantage of all it offers.

Sale
Parrot PF728000 ANAFI Drone, Foldable Quadcopter Drone with...
  • This drone with a camera equipped with f/2.4 wide angle ASPH lens, HDR, and up to 2.8 times digital...
  • The ANAFI Parrot Drone can have up to 25 minutes of filmed flight time thanks to an intelligent...
  • With its ultra-compact and lightweight carbon frame (320 g), this quadcopter drone unfolds in less...
  • Equipped with a Parrot Skycontroller 3 folding remote control, the ANAFI Parrot Drone can be located...
  • Software updates can make changes to existing features, further enhance ANAFI’s reliability and...
  • Egyptian (Publication Language)

Benefits of the best drone with 4K camera

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Better video resolution 

4K drones capture cinema-quality footage with an average of eight million pixels to produce at least 3840 x 2160 to up to 4000 pixels wide in video resolution.

This is about 4 times bigger than full HD 1080p and opens up a whole new world for professional videography.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re filming 4K videos high up in the air for personal use, for marketing and tourism purposes, cinematic films or even when reporting live, you will get a higher quality that looks much better even when scaled down to 1080P or lower. 

Higher Quality Images

Not only will you be able to capture high-resolution videos but also capture stunning images as well with the best drone with 4k camera

This is because the enlarged sensor allows you to take 12-megapixel images that are 4000 pixels wide and 3000 pixels tall. 

You get a much bigger picture which means a bigger image surface to work with. 

This is great if you plan to edit and crop the image later or in post-production 

More zooming and cropping options 

It is not recommended to zoom in when regarding a video especially if you are using a low-resolution camera or if there is no optical zoom

This is because cameras tend to crop the video when you zoom in digitally and you’re left with pixelated lower quality videos. 

As mentioned, before you get four times the number of pixels with 4K video resolution. 

This means that you have more freedom to zoom, crop and reframe your shots and not worry about lowering the quality of the footage. 

Smoother and more stable aerial videos 

Some video creators will use artificial image stabilization features in professional video editing programs. 

They will use these to scale, rotate or crop videos to eliminate visible camera shake. 

However, the issue here is that this decreases the quality of the footage. 

On the other hand, if you work with 4K video resolution, there’s more than enough pixels to serve as a buffer for the loss in resolution during the editing process 

This means that you will have smoother and more professional-quality aerial videos every single time.

4K drone buying guide

best 4k drone camera close up

For more options, you can check out the best drone with camera and drones for filmmaking.

If you want to search for a 4K drone on the market, keep these things in mind:

Flight Modes and Features

Look for units with autonomous flight modes that enhance your filming experience.

Some of the most common include:

  • Obstacle detection/avoidance – this is self-explanatory.
  • Orbit/Point of interest – The drone flies around an object or subject while capturing footage.
  • WayPoint – You set a flight path for the drone to follow
  • Follow-me – The drone follows you so you don’t have to manually pilot it.

Camera

Of course, the drone needs to be equipped with a 4K camera but there are a few technical specs that you need to pay attention to.

These include:

Megapixel – the higher the number of pixels, the more you’ll be able to zoom in on the picture, crop, etc without losing the level of quality.

Angle – wider angles allow you to capture wider images

Gimbal – Most 4K drones come with a 3-axis camera but the higher the gimbal axis, the more image stability you achieve

Shooting Modes

Flight modes are great but shooting modes are even better.

One of the best is:

Tracking – Some drones use facial or object recognition to actively track targets. Some may be able to re-search for a face even if they lose the target for a few seconds.

Flight Specs

Other than the camera. Flight and shooting modes pay attention to:

Flight time – How many minutes can it last in the air?

Range – How far away can you fly it from the remote controller

Speeds – How good is it at following a fast-moving target?

Build 

Make sure the drone has a robust design and solid build.

Check to see if it comes with propellers guards or anything that guarantees minimal damage if it comes into contact with an object or crashes.

Remote Controller

Most 4k drones come with a dedicated controller.

However, they may not come with a built-in screen so you’ll have to use your smartphone as a screen if you want a live feed.

It is up to you to decide whether this is a problem or not.

FAQs 4K video drone

1. Is 4K worth it or should I go with 8K? 

This will depend on what exactly you use your drone for.  

However, while 8K is exciting, there’s still a lot that needs tweaking before it’s problem-free and we can harness its powers.

It is better to look at the quality of the camera sensor and lenses before you think about resolution. 

This is because a high-quality 4K video will look 10x better than a low-quality 8K video. 

In the end, even though 8K promises crisper and sharper captures, 4K is definitely worth it, and manufacturers aren’t done with it just yet. 

2. Is 4K better than 1080p?

If you’re capturing footage for personal use like uploading to social media, etc. 1080p is good enough.

However, if you want professional quality footage then yes, 4K is definitely better than 1080p.

This is because 4K cameras have a larger sensor that captures light better and larger lenses for clearer images.

A quick look at the drone market will see manufacturers focusing more on drone 4K cameras instead of 1080p or even 8K.

Drone

Features

Price

DJI Phantom 4 PRO Plus V2.0 Quadcopter Drone with 1-inch...
  • Flight range: 4.3 miles
  • Flight Time: 30 minutes
  • Weight: 3 pounds
DJI Mavic 2 PRO Drone Quadcopter with Fly More Kit Combo...
  • Flight range: 11.1 miles
  • Flight Time: 31 minutes
  • Weight: 1.64 pounds
DJI Mavic 2 Zoom Drone Quadcopter with Fly More Kit Combo...
  • Flight range: 4.97miles
  • Flight Time: 31 minutes
  • Weight: 2.1 pounds
DJI Mavic Air 2 - Drone Quadcopter UAV with 48MP Camera 4K...
  • Flight range: 11.4 miles
  • Flight Time: 34 minutes
  • Weight: 1.26 pounds
Yuneec Typhoon H3 Hexacopter with 1' Sensor 4K Camera, ST16S...
  • Flight range: 1.24 miles
  • Flight Time: 25 minutes
  • Weight: 16.25 pounds
Parrot PF728000 ANAFI Drone, Foldable Quadcopter Drone with...
  • Flight range: 2.5 miles
  • Flight Time: 25 minutes
  • Weight: 1.56 pounds

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