Unless you only plan on flying your new drone inside, the wind is crucial to factor when purchasing a drone. No matter how good of a drone pilot you are, if you fly drones in strong winds, your potentially very expensive drone will most likely end up crashing to the ground.
That’s why you always need to know how strong the wind is and whether you can control your drone in such conditions. Moreover, you should have a drone heavy and robust enough so it can overcome any sudden wind changes. On this page, we’ll cover everything you need to know about flying in strong winds and share with you the best wind-resistant drone you can buy.
What to Look for In a Wind-Resistant Drone?
In order to buy the best drone to fly in windy conditions, you need to know what features to look for primarily. To make this process easier for you, we’ve summed up the most important criteria a wind-resistant drone should possess. Let’s take a closer look at each:
- Speed – This is likely the most important feature you should look for, as the drone needs to have a powerful enough motor so it can maintain a stable position when facing windy conditions.
- Robust Build – A lighter drone will get blown away even by average wind speeds. It should be heavy enough to endure a sudden gust of wind and strong enough to survive any hits or crashes.
- Solid Flight Distance – If you’ve ever piloted a drone in strong winds, you know how quickly you can lose control when the wind starts blowing. A drone with a long-distance flight range will allow you to track it down more easily if it gets blown away, as it will still offer you solid GPS accuracy.
- Foldability – Although this isn’t imperative for the drone to have, like with some of the previous features, foldability can be very helpful if your drone finds itself amidst a strong wind storm. A foldable drone will simply fold up when hit with wind instead of breaking and falling on the ground.
- Obstacle Avoidance – A more advanced feature that comes with more expensive drones, obstacle avoidance can come in very handy in windy situations. If your drone has multiple sensors that provide it omnidirectional obstacle avoidance, it can guide itself without you having to micromanage every second. Also not a must-have feature, but a highly desirable one.
When Are the Winds Too Strong For A Drone?
Before we move onto the best drones for strong winds, we should stress that sometimes the wind will just be too strong for you to fly a drone in. In such cases, it won’t matter how robust, fast, or strong your wind-resistant drone is.
It still depends on how strong your drone is, but there’s a general rule of thumb you can use to tell whether you should fly or not. If the wind speeds exceed over two-thirds of your drone’s maximum speed, you should avoid flying it.
Overall, you should always try to steer clear of flying in bad weather, as there can be potentially serious consequences for your drone each time you do so. Dust, dirt, or water can enter your drone’s sensitive components causing it to malfunction and crash.
If you’re set to fly your drone in strong winds, make sure you’re doing it in an area with no nearby obstacles or birds. Additionally, don’t fly it out too far or let it out of your sight.
Best Drones In Strong Winds
Based on the standards we’ve talked about above, we’ve put together a list of the best wind-resistant drones currently available on the market. We’ve arranged the list going from the most affordable drone to the most expensive one. That way, you can easily find the most suitable option depending on your budget. Here are our top five best drones for strong winds:
Tarot X8 Octocopter
The Tarot TL8X000 X8 drone is one of the rarest and unique drones on the market. It comes with eight propellers and is very stable to fly, even in windy conditions. The drone’s entire skeleton is made from metal and designed to be foldable, so the chances of this drone breaking due to wind are minimal. It comes without any advanced features or any cameras, but you can mount the latter below the drone, as it supports a take-off weight four times its original size.
It weighs around 95 oz, making it a robust aerial vehicle that won’t get knocked off its trajectory very easily. Of course, this weight class also means that you’ll need an FAA flying permit if you live in the US. This octocopter goes for a little over $400, making it a medium to high-priced drone ideal for casual users who want to get into the hobby more seriously.
3DR Solo Quadcopter
Although 3DR Solo might not be as well-known as its DJI counterparts, this drone holds its ground very well and deserves a spot as one of the best drones for flying in strong winds. It comes with balanced features that make it an excellent choice for all drone enthusiasts. The drone can fly up to 54 mph and has a range of 0.5 miles with a 20-minute flight time. It comes equipped with a 4K camera capable of shooting at 30fps.
The base version of the 3DR Solo will run you out $700, while the bundle plus version is around $100 more expensive. If you’re planning on buying this drone, we advise you to go for the latter option. This is because the bundle version also comes with a nifty gimbal and a practical backpack you can use to take your drone whenever traveling.
DJI Mavic 2 Zoom
The DJI Mavic 2 Zoom drone ticks all of the boxes of what a top-tier filming drone should have. This flagship drone supports 4K, 2.7K, and Full HD. It also comes with a 12 MP sensor with a 4x zoom and a 2x optical (24-48 mm). If you’re all about making creative shots and dynamic perspectives, the Mavic 2 Zoom is hard to beat.
Looking at its features in terms of wind resistance, the Mavic 2 Zoom is undoubtedly one of the best drones money can buy. It supports a maximum speed of 44 mph (in sport mode) and weighs just under 32 oz, making it a very capable and stable drone to take even in medium to high winds. Plus, it’s foldable like many other DJI drones, providing better damage protection.
It has a 31-minute maximum flight, while the controller itself can last up to 135 minutes on just one full charge. Of course, all of these fantastic features do come with a solid price tag, as the Mavic 2 Zoom is priced at $1,349 without a controller and around $1,800 with the smart controller.
DJI Phantom 4
Only slightly more expensive than the DJI Mavic 2 Zoom, the DJI Phantom 4 Pro offers similar features, with a bit more power in terms of video processing. This drone supports H.264 4K videos at 60fps and H.265 4K at 30fps, both with a fantastic 100Mbps bitrate. It uses a one-inch Megapixels CMOS sensor and has five directions of obstacle sensing.
It weighs in at a little over 100 ounces, with fairly medium dimensions of 16 x 14 x 9 inches. Even with this solid weight, the drone has an approximate flight time of 30 minutes, which is very commendable.
It’s also important to mention that the DJI Phantom 4 doesn’t have foldable arms, as the entire body makes up one solid piece. The Standard Phantom 4 RC comes at a price of $1,600. You can also get an RC version that has a screen, which will cost you $2,049.
DJI Inspire 2
DJI Inspire 2 is arguably one of the best drones on the market, overall. It can reach a speed up to 58 mph and reach 0 to 50 mph in just five seconds. It also has an impressive control range of over 4.3 miles, with a sensory range of 90 feet. The drone comes equipped with 6K resolution cameras, a 360-degree rotating gimbal, and supports a 1080p live view.
Weighing over 120 ounces, it’s certainly not a very practical drone for frequent travelers. But, at the same time, it is a drone that can support rough flying conditions. It comes with a massive dual battery system that supports a flight time of up to 27 minutes.
With so many professional features packed into this state-of-the-art drone, you would be right to expect that the DJI Inspire 2 comes with a hefty price tag. The base version of the DJI Inspire 2 will cost you around $3,300, while the advanced kit goes for $9,400. With this in mind, the DJI Inspire is genuinely a top-class drone reserved mostly for professional drone pilots and video production companies who want flight stability even in windy conditions.
How to Choose the Best Wind-Resistant Drone? – A Sum Up
As we’ve highlighted above, it’s best to avoid flying during high winds altogether. But, if you must do so, the drones we’ve featured on our list will provide you with a great user experience even during extremely windy conditions.
Moreover, all of the drones we’ve talked about can provide you with much more than just strong wind-resistance attributes. They come equipped with great performance features, are long-lasting, and offer excellent value for money. With that in mind, you won’t go wrong no matter which of our recommended options you go for.