I am a film producer and was just recently introduced to the idea of using a helicopter drone for film.  The more I have researched the more fascinated I have become with the idea. That being said I am in desperate need of your help.  I am so new to this that most everything in the forums just goes right over my head.  I don't have the foggiest what most of it means.

I am looking to find a helicopter drone that is capable of carrying something as large as a dslr.  I think it would need a gyro gimbal (I think that is what it is called) to help keep it level and smooth.  Also, the ability to see the video from the helicopter so that you have an idea of what you are capturing.  Thats about it.  I don't need a million bells and whistles because I wouldn't know what to do with them.

Any suggestions? I don't even know where to begin. It appears you can build them yourself for much cheaper but then as I said I don't know anything about them and it seems complicated.  Any recommendations for the cheapest helicopter out there that still has good enough quality and matches what I am looking for?  I would love something in the thousand dollar range but I don't know if that is totally unrealistic?

Any help from all of you experienced pros would be greatly appreciated.



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I would suggest hiring someone with a drone for you. Even if you get a drone that's good enough for your requirements and in your budget you'd still need to fly it pretty well to get film-worthy-recordings. This is not an easy task, it takes a lot of time and practice and you might even crash your drone in the learning curve.

Thanks for the reply.  This is not something I am looking at for a one time thing.  I would like to learn and become experienced in the field of aerial cinematography with drones.

recommend getting ready to fly kit with a trainer . Most packagers do not com assembled & need some RC knowledge in putting them together. I carry a line of ready to fliy crafts that do not need to be pieced together & programmed. this is done for you from the factory. I Also have pleased bundles together for beginners that have all the nessey equipment. I recommend a MQ600,Foldable T580P+ packages or Bumble Bee. But I recommend Droid works frame with APM for a craft with hex or octo configuration this is big money. http://WWW.OFFTHEGRIDWATER.CA/


Thanks for the recommendations. The two that you have, are they able to carry a DSLR? Also, what is a Droid works frame? If I go that route what can I expect to pay and are there ready to fly kits available?  I have been looking at the ArduCopter 3DR Quad here:


It appears with the additional accessories its around $1,500 (although I don't see a gimbal yet).  Is this the type of drone you were recommending or is it still not the quality you are referring to? How does it compare to the ones on your site?  Sorry for so many questions, like I said, I know nothing about any of this but I feel it sucking me in.  I imagine many of you have felt the same way before?


Practice in a simulator software like Aerofly. Put some serious hours into it even before spending any money. And I disagree with Bim, you will crash your drone in the learning curve.

Am I better off getting something cheaper like the 

Parrot AR.Drone Quadricopter

just to practice on or is this not even remotely similar to what I am wanting to get in the end?It seems like it is controlled very differently by using the iPhone or iPad.

Yes it will carry a DSL !  Doroid works are made to order around $5000 +.  Sorry to say 3DR frame stuff is do it your self & infirior frame design interms of wight & materials. for a beginerr going with dji controler would be a lot easer.  MQ600,Foldable T580P+ packages or Bumble Bee are around $500+



Thanks for being so helpful. On your website it says that it does not come with a camera mount.  Is that something that can just be ordered with it? Also, is it possible to have the camera mount be a gimbal system that helps keep the camera steady?  

So obviously these systems are way less complicated than the super expensive ones.  What is the main difference between the more expensive systems and these?

yes for $5000 get a computer controled robot. you can add camra mout to your order start @ $100

So if I get something like the MQ600 and master the ability to fly it, when I then switch over to a $5,000+ helicopter are the controls the same or is it a whole new learning curve again?

Also, out of the two that you mentioned (the MQ600 and the Bumblebee) which one do you think is better for my needs?

I recommend the Bumblebee over the MQ600 it carries a version of the Dji controller very popular. Yes RC controles remain the same for the most part. $5,000+ helicopter gives you the ability to use GCS to enter antonymous flight plan & exiqute it cam mount stabilization & more.


Thanks for all the help.  In the end I will probably go with the Bumblebee.  I think it is a smarter move to learn how to fly with a cheaper helicopter and upgrade later.  You mention that the computer controlled helicopters are $5,000+.  Is the one on this link Computer controlled?


From what I can tell it is. It appears to be able to do most of what you were talking about but runs around $1,500 once you get the add ons.  I would probably still get the bumblebee to learn with but is this helicopter a good option once I am an experienced flyer?

Also, does the bumblebee have the capability of sending a wireless video feed so that you can see what you are capturing from the air?

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