Things to consider before buying a drone for fishing
What would you consider the most important feature of a drone? Is it an integrated camera that delivers amazing photo and video quality? Perhaps you appreciate a device with the maximum transmission range? Or you want a product that will have an impressive water resistance rating to handle potential splashes?
Our experts understand that each drone feature can be important. That’s why we described them all so that you can understand them better. We tried to cover every single detail to ensure you have all the required information to pick the product that suits you the most. Here are the factors to consider when selecting a fishing drone!
If you are using a fishing drone, you will need a camera to observe the surroundings. That is why this is the first feature to consider in these devices. For starters, you want to check the camera’s resolution. We suggest going with at least 12MP, such as the camera in the DJI Mavic Pro 4K Quadcopter Drone. This device is capable of delivering HD photos and supports 4K videos. You will probably be able to find fishing drones with 20MP or better cameras. If you can afford the extra buck and you like the better picture quality, there is no reason why not to invest in them.
Apart from the camera resolution, its performance is also important. That’s why you want to look for sensors and other additions that could affect picture quality and color variety. You will appreciate watching photos and videos with vivid and realistic colors.
You know how a drone works – you send a signal with your remote controller to fly to the desired location. A fishing drone should be equipped with a camera that will stream the picture to the screen on your remote control. The device and the controller can maintain the connection within the recommended transmission range for that unit.
The transmission range can vary significantly, with the lowest being as little as 0.5 miles. That might be enough for beginners, but experienced anglers will need at least double as that. It will help to scan the surroundings and ensure that you check the environment from a distant location.
Now, some fishing drones are capable of transmitting the picture at over four miles. For example, the DJI Phantom 4 Pro Professional Drone should cover all your needs, especially if you need a drone for surf fishing. It’s also important that the connection is stable, which is why many manufacturers resort to using advanced technology.
While choosing the desired drone, you also want to consider its maximum speed. That might not be relevant for most anglers since they learned to be patient on their adventures. But a fast drone will help to reach the destination quicker. If you want to reach a location that’s two or three miles away, it’s only natural that using a device whose speed is 40MPH is better than using one with 18MPH.
You shouldn’t look for drones at a lower speed than 18MPH. That being said, the standard fishing drone speed is usually 40+MPH. Some units, such as the 3DR Solo Quadcopter, can also go over 50MPH. That will ensure that you can move the drone around quickly. It can be helpful if you need to return it to the base fast or if you don’t want to waste precious seconds when observing the environment.
Drones are products of advanced technology. They require powerful batteries to run, but their active flight time is still somewhat limiting. You want to look for devices that have about 25-35 minutes of flight time, such as seen with the Potensic Dreamer Drone with 4K Camera. It’s important to make a difference between the actual battery life and this description. If you say flight time, that’s how long the drone can spend in the air before the battery dies. That means the actual battery life could be longer on a single charge.
As for the average time to charge the device, it should probably take around two or three hours for a full charge. That means your drone could be ready to fly sooner, but our suggestion is to charge it completely before you go. It decreases the risk of the drone’s battery dying while the device is in the air.
A drone can come with various functions available. You activate some by using the remote controller, while others require specialized software. That is a free app for iOS and Android that opens additional camera settings and options.
Here are some of the most common functions of a fishing drone:
- Follow me – the idea of this option is to go hands-free. That means the device will keep the focus on you. Wherever you move, it will also move, which means the angle will always be the best possible. It can be convenient for recording the entire process of capturing fish.
- Selfie – selfie is another option where you put yourself in the center. The idea is to find the best possible angle for the perfect video or photo.
- Orbit – a very convenient option for anglers. The product will fly in circles while focusing on a single object or location. That will ensure to check the entire environment quickly.
Please note that these features could have different names, and it all depends on the manufacturer.
Fishing drone manufacturers don’t hesitate to add accessories to the box with their products. These accessories could be essential, but they could also be focused on improving your experience of using the device.
Here is the list of the most common accessories:
- SD card – the card allows you to store the videos and photos captured with your drone. These could be 16GB, such as seen with the DJI Mavic Pro 4K Quadcopter Drone, or larger. The more space you have, the more footage you can store on the card without erasing previous items.
- Cables – these can be different cable types. For example, a USB cable serves to connect the product to the computer and transferring photos and videos. An HDMI port can help to connect the drone controller to a screen of your choice.
- Chargers – these usually come with drones since they are required to keep the battery alive.
- Carrying case – it’s a convenient accessory that ensures that it’s easy to pack the product and move it around.
What else can be important?
It’s not easy to pick the best fishing drone because you have so many features to consider. Here are some other things that you can take into account during the selection process:
- A wide operating temperature range – if you are a passionate angler, low temperatures won’t stop you from heading outside. But if you plan on using a drone, please note that most devices have an operating temp range from 0 to 40C. That’s why you should be careful about using them in below-zero conditions.
- Waterproof rating – you will be using your fishing drone above or close to the water. That’s why it should have a resistance rating that’s at least resistant to splashes. If it happens that the drone crashes into the water, a higher resistance rating might help to minimize the damage. For instance, the Swellpro Splash Drone 3 Plus is ready for those conditions.
- Lost drone beacon – if your drone crashes, the beacon detects it and helps find it easily.
The average cost of a drone could vary significantly. That means you can purchase a product for as low as $200-$300, but also a premium option for $1,500+. We compared the prices and divided the fishing drone prices into the following categories:
- Affordable – these are entry-level devices, and they might cost anywhere from $200 to $500. The exact features depend on the product but don’t expect a generous transmission range of flight time. The Potensic Dreamer Drone with 4K Camera is an excellent bargain since it features a decent camera for a cheap drone for fishing.
- Average cost – these can be excellent value for money, and they cost anywhere from $500 to $1,000. Depending on the price, you can expect optimal stability, average flight time, but also an excellent transmission range.
- Premium products – these drones often cost from $1,000 to $1,500 or more. Apart from the expected high-quality cameras and other features, these products often give other bells and whistles. For example, The DJI Phantom 4 Pro Professional Drone features a 20MP camera with a 1-inch MP CMOS sensor to ensure it delivers maximum value for the money.