While picking an RC helicopter can be a tough task, choosing the right remote control helicopter with camera is even more difficult. After all, you have to consider the camera quality and its features in addition to the characteristics of the heli itself!
Selecting the right remote control helicopter with camera is even more difficult when you consider the overwhelming array of options available.
From big ticket helicopters with attached GoPro cameras to micro helicopters with built-in cameras, there are a multitude of choices, making the selection process all the more challenging.
Just as with the increased popularity in RC boats, and trucks as well as remote control cars of recent years the growing popularity of RC heli’s has also led to more and more models becoming available.
If you’re able to choose the right heli with camera for your needs, interests, experience level, and budget, then you can expect to enjoy hours of aerial photography fun! If you choose the wrong one, however, you may end up spending more time on the ground than up in the air enjoying high-flying fun.
A Little Help!
I know, you may be feeling a little discouraged right about now, but have no fear! With years of RC flying experience under my belt, I’ve decided to give you my top picks for RC helicopters with cameras for a number of categories. Whether you want a fun and inexpensive RC heli for your kid or a industry-leading heli with professional photography capabilities, I’ve got you covered.
Now, before we get started, it’s important to note that if you’re simply looking for an RC heli without a camera, you should check out our other post The Best Remote Control Helicopter and also perhaps consider this post as well.
Also, RC helicopter purists may feel that quadcopters should be left off of the list. However, due to the flight stability they provide, they are terrific for flying and snapping aerial photos. Quadcopters also feature prominently amongst the best video and photo capture flying platforms available today. So, although they may not technically be helicopters per se, due to this and their inherent similarity to helicopters, I’ve included them on this list as well.
Without further delay, here are my top 10 picks for the best remote control helicopter with camera.
1. If you want something that is great value for money.
If you’re really focused on value for money, it’s hard to look past the UDI U818A 2.4GHz 4 CH 6 Axis Gyro RC Quadcopter with Camera RTF Mode 2. Not only does this rugged little flying machine fly like a dream, but it comes with a price tag that will make you smile from ear to ear.
This is an excellent flying little quad. Although it is small and light, it can easily perform outdoors in very light breeze conditions.
The camera is also fairly decent for such a small price tag! However, you may want to upgrade the microSD card, because the one gig card it comes with will fill up in a jiffy.
The remote control transmitter for the UDI Axis Gyro is equally terrific. In addition to feeling comfortable in your hand and being easy to use, it features digital trim settings and produces a digital readout that shows the remote’s battery life, throttle setting, camera settings, trim settings, and so on.
The remote also features a cool 360 inversion feature, which allows you to perform flips with the press of a button. Word of advice though, make sure you have plenty of altitude and be prepared to give it a little throttle in order to keep the quad from smacking into the ground.
There’s a ton of other positive things I could say about this quad, but this list can’t stretch on a mile long! Overall, it’s a fun, inexpensive, and quality quadcopter with camera that can be used for a variety of purposes!
2. If you want something that doesn’t really look like it has a camera on it.
Whether you want to do covert spy missions like 007 or simply want a streamlined remote control heli without a bulky attached camera, the Black Egofly Hawkspy LT-712 RC Helicopter is the right remote control heli with camera for you!
Equipped with a built-in, high-resolution digital video camera that is seamlessly mounted directly underneath the cockpit, the Egofly Hawkspy can indiscreetly take high-quality photos and videos. The 640 x 480 digital video camera comes equipped with a one gigabyte micro SD card and USB adapter that plugs directly into your computer, allowing you to view video footage in AVI format.
In addition to being able to easily hover and maneuver in all manner of directions, the Hawkspy also features a built-in gyroscope for automatic stabilization. This allows you to enjoy flying the machine, rather than spending all of your time trying to avoid a disastrous crash.
Although it probably performs best when flown indoors, the real fun begins when you take it outside for a spin (just make sure there is only light or no breeze) to really put the camera through its paces.
With the camera already inconspicuously built in to this terrific heli, it comes ready to fly and (and if you are so inclined) spy, right out of the box!
3. If you want something cheap but still a quality product.
Let’s face it, even millionaires have a budget; albeit a slightly larger one. Kidding aside, if you’re on a limited budget, you shouldn’t have to sacrifice quality and be forced to choose a sub-par remote control helicopter with camera.
Well, thanks to the Syma S107C 3channel Coaxial Mini Spy Cam Helicopter you don’t have to. As the first camera heli produced by legendary RC manufacturer Syma, the S107C is equipped with the same awesome features available on the brand’s popular S107, except it has a quality camera attached to it as well.
As a three-channel heli, the Syma S107C can fly in six directions. It also features a coaxial rotor design, which naturally stabilizes the heli while in flight.
Furthermore, it also comes equipped with a powerful built-in gyro, allowing it to lock in the heading and keep the helicopter’s chassis from continuously rotating. This makes it easy for even the greenest of RC beginners to fly!
Most impressive, however, is the fact that it can hover in flight without your hands even needing to be on the transmitter. The S107C’s camera is removable as well, allowing you to take the camera off whenever you want for a little less weight and a little more time in the skies.
All of these features for under $100 makes this remote control helicopter with camera an absolute steal of a deal!
4. If you want something small.
Bigger isn’t always better, especially when it comes to covert spy missions! Weighing only 50 grams and easily fitting in the palm of your hand, the Hubsan X4 (H107c) 4 Channel 2.4ghz Rc Quad Copter with Camera is a small remote control helicopter with camera that packs a powerful punch.
The size of the Hubsan X4 provides you with the ability to perform controlled, precision flight exercises and record video or snap quality photos almost anywhere! While small, the X4 also features four powerful motors, giving you the boost you need for fantastic performance and maneuverability.
If you’re a beginner, just put the heli on beginner mode to learn and master the basics of flight. If you’re an advanced RC helicopter operator, the advanced mode will suit you to a tee.
Although the video is far from production quality high definition, the very fact that an RC heli this size has photo and video capabilities is astonishing!
5. If you want something that streams live video.
What’s better than being able to fly an RC helicopter and take digital photos and videos that you can download to your computer? Well, how about a remote control helicopter with camera that streams live video!
This is exactly what you can do with the Hubsan H107D FPV X4 Mini RTF Quadcopter. The palm-sized Hubsan H107D offers a first person viewing experience through its built-in camera, sending a live picture feed directly to the quadcopter’s transmitter screen!
This cutting-edge feature allows you to record video while flying by the screen for a true pilot’s point of view. Of course, you also have the luxury of flying by sight as well.
As the world’s smallest first person view quadcopter, the H107D is a modern engineering marvel. This popular remote control helicopter with camera is ready to fly right out of the box, allowing the greenest of beginners to begin flying in first person view straight away!
6. If you want something a bit different.
This is one amazing remote control helicopter with camera!!! If you like the idea of owning a first person view quadcopter, then you’ll love the Parrot AR.Drone 2.0 Elite Edition Quadricopter.
Why, you might ask? The answer is simple: the Parrot AR. Drone 2.0 is the first quadcopter ever designed to be controlled by a tablet or smart phone. Simply by downloading the free AR Freeflight 2.0 app at the App Store or Android Marketplace, you can begin flying the heli right from your smart phone!
You can control the direction of the AR Drone 2.0 by tilting your smart phone or tablet. If that wasn’t enough, the quadcopter’s autopilot feature can provide you with expert take-offs and landings each and every time. Thanks to the unique piloting interface, you can also take photos and record videos and share them directly with friends, family, and fellow RC helicopter enthusiasts.
The software backing the Parrot AR. Drone 2.0 also has the ability for you to record your flight data (even geolocate details of your flights) and share these with the online Parrot AR. Drone 2.0 community. Once again just amazing!
As a techie nut and long-time RC enthusiast, I absolutely love the idea of being able to whip out my smart phone and control the heli without the need to use a bulky transmitter! Best of all, the Parrot AR. Drone 2.0 software is scheduled to have free future updates as well.
7. If you want something which is a decent size.
While a small remote control helicopter with camera has its merits, there’s nothing quite like launching a large heli up in the air and watching it dominate the skies.
If this is more up your alley, then the Haktoys 2014 HAK738C is an ideal option. I love large RC helicopters, and this is an excellent model. It’s also electric powered (and doesn’t run on nitro fuel like some of the other larger heli’s do) and features 3.5 channels, adjustable speed modes, built-in gyroscope, coaxial rotor, an alloy body, and a neat paint job to boot.
Thanks to its size, the 30-inch long RC heli provides beginner and advanced users alike with a terrific flying experience and excellent directional movement both indoors and outdoors. However, newbies should purchase with caution, because this is far from being a small toy.
Due to the power and performance of this heli, it’s best to start off by flying it in a large open area (either indoors or outdoors but if outdoors make sure there is little to no wind), at least until you learn its flight characteristics.
Did I mention that the video and picture quality is top-notch as well. Need I say more?
8. If you just want something you can have some fun with.
Unless you’re a professional aerial photographer or need very high quality aerial videos and photos for your business, you probably just want a remote control helicopter with camera that you can have some good ol’ fashion fun with. If this is the case, it’s hard to look past the WL Toys V959.
The V959 is a fun little heli that comes with a camera and is ready for high-flying fun right out of the box. In addition to being easy to fly and having a range the size of a football field, the power-packed heli also comes with a camera that takes surprisingly great photos and videos give the price of this heli.
A great feature, and something which surprisingly you don’t see on more camera equipped helis is the camera head also pivots, allowing you to aim the camera upward or downward for the best shots depending on your intended flying altitude.
9. If you want something top of the line with a replaceable camera.
If money really isn’t much of a concern and you want one of the best flying and video or photographic experiences possible, then the Dji Phantom 2 Ready to Fly Quadcopter with H3-2D Camera Gimbal is an obvious choice.
Optimised for a GoPro Hero 3+ camera (not included) for the absolute best action shots possible, the Phantom 2 can produce stellar videos and photographs at virtually any height and in a wide range of flying conditions.
As a natural evolution of the original Phantom, the Phantom 2 features the same integrated and compact design of its predecessor, but it comes with aerial photography and first person viewing capabilities right out of the box.
When a rock-solid gimbal is added to the mix (as well as the potential to further upgrade and customise this), the Phantom 2 and the GoPro Hero 3 (not included) provides an entry-level pro or high-end amateur camera platform that cannot be beat!
This is simply an amazing top of the range heli!!
10. If money isn’t really an object.
Last but not least, if you’re in the market for a GPS controlled quadcopter with first person viewing capabilities, a decent camera and gimball, and which lives up to the hype, the DJI Phantom 2 Vision Quadcopter with Integrated FPV Camcorder will do all you need it to and much more!
It is a complete aerial video and camera system that can be up in the air within minutes of taking it out of the box.
The list of features and capabilities with this technologically advanced beast of an RC heli is a mile long, but let’s just say it can fly for 25 minute sessions, records video in 1080p and takes 14MP photos, and the camera can also be controlled via a tablet or smart phone allowing for first-person viewing and much much more!
The Best Remote Control Helicopter with Camera For You!
Well, there you have it. Whether you need a small and inexpensive heli just to play with on an occasional afternoon or you want the best remote control helicopter with camera that money can buy, one of these top picks is sure to be just right for you!