We have a theory, if a drone cannot land safely, it has no business flying. Assuming your drone does fly safely, you can manually manage the flight and landing, or you can utilize a built-in feature for many machines, RTH. Just what is RTH? Simple enough, RTH stands for Return to Home.
RTH is an automated flight feature that sounds simple enough, but there is more to it than just hitting a button, let’s talk about the capabilities of RTH on your favorite drone to help you land safely.
Why trust Drone Rush?
I’ve been a fan of flight since a young age; while I’ve had few opportunities at the helm of manned aircraft, the hours on my fleet of drones continue to grow. I enjoy putting cameras into the sky, silky smooth aerial imagery makes me happy. My goal is to help all pilots enjoy flight legally and safely.
Know the law! While RTH is a fantastic automated flight feature, taking your hands off of the sticks does not mean you can take your eyes off of your drone.
A few great RTH drones
DJI Mavic 2 Pro: Best consumer drone
The DJI Mavic 2 Pro is an older drone, but still tops our list as the best consumer drone on the market. The all-direction obstacle avoidance sensors make the drone one of the safest in the sky, and the 1-inch Hasselblad camera is tough to beat. In terms of the GPS enabled RTH functionality, the Mavic 2 Pro is a top performer, outdone only by a few consumer drones and a handful of RTK-enabled commercial drones.
One of our favorite things about the Mavic 2 Pro is the remote control. The Mavic 2 series is not unique in offering a small display built into the remote, but it’s a really nice thing to have. In many cases when a user is relying on RTH to safely return their drone, it is because they connected smartphone has frozen, crashed, or just disconnected, in this case, the built-in display becomes a life saver.
Should I buy the DJI Mavic 2 Pro?
Please consider your long term plans before buying the Mavic 2 Pro. Make no mistake, this is the kind of drone you’ll be happy with for years, but, it is an older drone already and we predict that DJI will launch a replacement relatively soon.
- Great 4K camera
- Fast and easy to fly
- Display in remote
- Powerful and safe
- Older drone
DJI Air 2S: Best camera drone for under $1,000
The DJI Air 2S is a fantastic camera drone. In fact, it’s the first sub-$1,000 drone with a 5.4K camera, and one of the first drones, regardless of price range, to offer 12KM, or 7.5 miles, of connectivity. The remote transmission range is not directly related to the GPS quality, but every little bit helps when improving the connection to the drone.
Should I buy the DJI Air 2S?
While the Mavic 2 Pro is our pick for the best consumer drone, the Air 2S is our top recommendation for a camera drone pilot. The smaller drone is much newer, offering more range, more flight features, and the same size of camera, but with more video resolution. The Air 2S is also more portable.
- Fast, fun, and easy to fly
- 5.4K camera
- Fewer obstacle avoidance sensors
- No display in the controller
DJI Mini 2: Best drone for under $500
The DJI Mini 2 is practically an impulse purchase, at least in terms of camera drones. We’re not pretending it’s affordable for just any pilot, but if you are looking for the most affordable 4K flying camera, this is it, and we certainly believe the Mini 2 is the best drone under $500.
Should I buy the DJI Mini 2?
This little drone won’t replace your larger camera drone, but it is very portable and the camera is at least on par with your smartphone. The Mini 2 is accessible, and makes for a superb drone for beginner pilots, as well as a no-hassle companion for experienced pilots to slap in their backpack. We like it!
- Small and very easy to transport
- Weighs less than 250g
- Best drone under $500
- Most affordable 4K camera
- Too small to carry many accessories
- Good camera, but not great
DJI FPV: Powerful hybrid racing drone
The DJI FPV is a unique hybrid drone. It brings together a reliable camera drone experience, and the racing experience. With several flight modes to work with, and a decent 4K camera, you can shoot stable 4K video in a slow and stable way, or you can unleash the beast and enjoy flips and turns at up to 87MPH.
Should I buy the DJI FPV?
The DJI FPV is the most fun we’ve had flying a drone, but we hesitate to recommend it to just any pilot. If you want the best camera drone, this isn’t it, and if you want the best racing drone, there are better out there, but we know of no other off-the-shelf solution that can do both really well in one package.
- Really fast, very fun to fly
- Good 4K camera
- Hybrid-racing drone can teach you to fly
- Comes with DJI Goggles V2.0
- Good hybrid, but not the best of either world
- Learning curve
- FPV requires a spotter
Parrot Anafi: Versatile camera gimbal
The Parrot Anafi has a camera trick that makes it stand out from the crowd, it can point the camera straight up. Sorry to say, this is fairly average drone, with a good 4K camera, and a unique fold for portability, but it doesn’t stand out for us beyond the camera trick.
Should I buy the Parrot Anafi?
The Anafi is an older drone, but it’s reliable, and if you need that upward pointing camera, there are few drones that can compete. In terms of RTH functionality, the Anafi has a limited connection range compared to the other craft on our list, thus, we do not recommend the Anafi if you do not need the best RTH range.
- Fun and easy to fly
- Camera points up
- Good 4K camera
- Easy to transport
- Older drone
- Limited range