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Why Are Drones Expensive?

Estimated reading time: 9 minutes

One thing about me, I always want more good things. As a drone enthusiast, I update my drone collection, trying to keep up with technological advances.

However, I often feel like hiding my credit card because I wonder; why are drones expensive?

Drones are expensive because of the updated features, software, and hardware to satisfy customer demands. The improved features enable a drone to fly safely, capture better photos, last longer, and avoid obstacles. But, a drone’s price depends on the type and function.

The price of a drone directly affects its quality! So, the higher it costs, the better its quality. 

Here’s an article to show all I learned about expensive drones. Read to the end.

Why Are Drones Expensive?

Not all drones are expensive. However, quality makes a drone cost more because of the advanced technology. A drone’s quality involves improved features that enable better functions. That’s why a high-quality drone is more costly than a low-quality drone.

However, it’s more than just technology. Usually, expensive drones also cost more because of their performance. Software, hardware, and safety features keep improving, making high-end drones pricier.

Ultimately, making a high-end drone takes time and costs more which makes it expensive for the consumer to purchase.

Drone enthusiasts want the latest drone technology integrated into their desirable models. Generally, it’s safe to say that some drones are expensive because of the specific tasks they can handle. Some drones are perfect for photography, while others are designed for racing drones.  

Furthermore, enthusiasts of a specific technology don’t mind the prices of the models they want. They can pay any price to get their hands on it. 

Gone are the days when drones were just an option for fun times. Now, drones are easier to fly, faster, safer, and make life more convenient.

An engineer using a drone in a lab.
Drone enthusiasts want the latest drone technology

Are Drones Expensive?

Yes, drones are pricey, but not all. The quality, structure, and technology make a drone expensive. An expensive drone features unique and costly materials, not to mention the technology with advanced features you can’t find in cheap drones.

It’s common for people to opt for bigger drones thinking they come with everything. But that thought can be deceiving. Though the size of a drone determines the number of raw materials, it still doesn’t affect how the technology functions.

So, Why Are Some Drones Expensive?

At first, drones were made mainly for the army. Now, drone innovation is getting more attention from hobbyists and commercial users. This is because drones are becoming more user-friendly for everyone to use.

Subsequently, the increasing drone interest has made more manufacturers make drones using advanced technology, materials, and design.  

Usually, there are two things to notice in drones with different price tags;

  • The materials in expensive drones have better quality.  
  • The propellers and frames of cheap drones are made from lower-quality thermoplastics.

However, describing how to notice differences can be tricky unless you use your hands to touch and feel the material quality. Cheap ones feel fragile.

Expensive drones use the highest quality materials because they impact how well a drone functions.

Why Are DJI Drones So Expensive?

DJI drones are so expensive because they feature sophisticated technology and parts. The DJI camera quality, flight software, and obstacle-sensing ability is leading in the market. DJI Inspire is topping the list with a price tag of about $10000.

DJI drones dominate the drone market, releasing different models for every user. However, even with the variety, DJI drones are costly compared to other brands.

The main reason for the high cost is based on quality. DJI does its best to build drones that every drone pilot will want to buy and enjoy using. Building a drone from scratch until it flies efficiently takes a lot.

There are several designs, skills, and advanced tools to be used– everything adds up.

Before listing the specifics of what makes a DJI drone worth every coin, you need to understand all the components that make the drone.

The DJI structure features several sensors for obstacle avoidance ability. Though many, you can’t compromise these multiple sensors’ role because they always keep your drone safe.

Furthermore, DJI spends on high-quality hardware for most of its drones. For instance, DJI camera technology is exceptional. You’ll get a professional-grade aerial camera 3/4 CMOS sensor in collaboration with Hasselblad. Usually, the total hardware in one drone can go up to 1 kg, which is heavier than most models.

DJI Store
DJI drones dominate the drone market.

Are Expensive Drones Easier to Fly?

Yes. Drones that cost more are easier to fly because they have advanced flight features like obstacle avoidance, hovering stability, and GPS. These features allow the pilot to adjust automatically to different conditions, avoiding a crash or loss.

Even though it’s true that expensive drones are easier to fly, sometimes easy is not the best. It would be best to buy a drone, depending on its use. For example, drone photographers would do well with mid-range drones because they’ll still offer better features and tools for easy and satisfying flying.

There’s a lot to admire about buying a cheaper drone. While they are primarily hard to fly because they lack intelligent flight modes, these drones challenge and make you a better pilot. You’ll manually master the controls and create muscle memory to be better.

Still, if you want to get into drone racing, then you must build excellent control skills because most racing drones don’t have innovative features. Besides, you’ll be flying so fast hence the need to have your fingers on the control sticks.

This learning, however, requires patience and more work, but it’s an excellent foundation if you want to become a professional.

Every so often the intelligent features can fail to function as expected. But with foundational skills, you can easily maneuver your way past dangerous conditions to safety.

Why Should You Buy an Expensive Drone?

Expensive drones have better performance and longevity. They have a structure from quality materials that make them resilient to bad weather. Still, they have advanced features that ensure peak performance.

A drone’s material determines how it’ll resist solid winds or heavy rain. Also, the material can control the level of impact in case of a crash.

Durable materials feel less impact when a drone crashes compared to cheap materials. In the end, the expensive drone lasts longer.

Advanced features in a drone like Return To Home, Follow Me, obstacle avoidance, and hovering stability make it enjoyable and easy to fly. Better still, the several features enable you to use the drone in different applications.

Remember that it’s harder to ‘outgrow’ an expensive drone than a cheap one because you have everything you want.  

Is Building a Drone Cheaper? 

Yes and no. If you have the skills and can easily access quality parts, then it’s cheaper to build a drone. However, it’s costlier if you don’t know where to start, which parts to buy, and lack basic knowledge.

Time is also of the essence. The time you take to complete building a drone adds to the overall cost.

So, how much will you spend to build a drone?

A DIY for a standard drone will cost something like $350 – $500, whereas an advanced drone would cost around $1000 and more. The difference lies in the number and price of materials to use.

How Long Can an Expensive Drone Fly?

The high-quality batteries in expensive drones have enough energy for longer flights. Usually, high-end drones fly for up to 40 minutes at a distance of 6.2 miles.

Expensive drones use lithium-polymer or lithium-ion batteries. They are compact and lightweight, which makes the drone maintain a lightweight for better stability and maneuvering.

In the end, the reduced weight makes the drone fly longer and faster to a further distance.

Different type of batteries for drones
Expensive drones have high-quality batteries.

How Does Maintenance Affect Drone Cost?

It’s not only expensive to buy a good drone but maintaining it also comes at a high cost. An expensive drone has costly parts to buy and repair. Depending on the level of maintenance, an expert will charge about $60-$70.

Becoming a drone owner doesn’t stop at buying a drone. Like other electronics, drones require regular maintenance.

Even though expensive ones last longer than cheap ones, it doesn’t mean they are eternal. At some point, eventually, depending on your skills, your expensive drone will crash or get lost. Plus, even experienced drone pilots can cause drone accidents.

The maintenance cost varies with the type of your drone. A DIY drone requires replacing the parts without spending a lot.

But expensive brands like DJI drones cost much to repair, even a minor crash. Still, once in a while, you’ll need to pay for servicing, and it’s also expensive.

When you crash an expensive drone, expect high costs by replacing high-quality parts like the camera and gimbal.

Frequently Asked Questions-

Should I Buy a Cheap Drone First?

 Starting small with cheaper is frustrating because it lacks easy-fly features. While the low price is comfortable for most pilots, it takes a lot of time to learn to fly. Usually, expensive drones are easier to fly for beginners.

What Is the Best Drone Brand?

 The best drone brand is DJI, occupying 70% of the drone market share. They manufacture all kinds of drones, from toy drones, consumer, prosumer, to industrial drones DJI has an in-house team of engineers, allowing them to come up with state-of-the-art technologies that are still affordable.

One of their drones, the Mavic 2 Pro, has stood the test of time even with new releases by being the best drone for potential aerial photographers, videographers, and even surveyors.

DJI Mavic 2 Pro has automatic obstacle sensing, a 4k camera, and intelligent flight modes. Better still, the 34-minute flight time means you’ll remain in the sky longer, achieving excellent footage.

Wrapping Up: Why Are Drones Expensive?

Generally, drones are expensive for people who want better devices since they come with advanced features, technology, and quality.

The good thing about buying expensive drones is that you’ll buy trust. Commonly, high-end drones do what they should.

Aside from the material and labor costs, a lot goes into building a drone to keep it in the air.

Ultimately, before settling on that expensive drone, you need to know if you can afford it or still get a cheaper option with the same essential qualities.


Article Name
Why Drones Are Expensive?
Here's an article to show all I learned about expensive drones and why drones are expensive?
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Remoteflyer Private Limited.
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