Mini drones are extremely fun to fly. There’s a reason why quadcopters are quickly becoming the most popular modern hobby. Now, while most mini quadcopters can be used merely as toys, some models can perform as fully-functional aerial footage video recorders as well.
The Micro Drone 3.0 by Extreme Fliers is one of those mini quadricopter that looks like a toy, yet performs like a fully-sized drone.
In this review, I’ll try to describe what to expect from this mini drone. I will also mention how it performs compared to the average quadcopter of this size category.
Note: Please keep in mind that any mini drone is prone to being pushed heavily by the wind. No matter the sensors and compensation systems, the light weight of the quadcopter makes it extremely vulnerable to wind.
Overview and Dimensions
The Micro Drone 3.0 is a four-bladed drone that fits in the palm of your hand. The dimensions of this quadcopter are 5.7 x 5.7 x 1.9 inches (14.5 x 14.5 x 1.9cm) and it weights only 56g (71g with camera), which is the same weight as a snickers bar.
This drone is completely modular, which means that you can customize it the way you want. Want to fly upside down? No problem – the quadcopter comes with a set of alternative propellers that allow you to do this acrobatics.
This modular snap-on design also increases the drone’s durability. The absence of wires naturally prevents any broken wire issues.
The Micro Drone 3.0 can also be controlled directly from your phone. It uses a Wi-Fi protocol and the maximum piloting distance is 150ft.
Control Modes: Line of Sight and FPV
This multi-device control feature offers you two different ways of controlling the drone. Besides the classic line of sight piloting, now you can use a fully-armed VR headset to achieve an immersive piloting experience. No other mini drone has that, at least not in this price range.
The drone comes with a fully-functional VR headset. You can insert your Smartphone there and use it to pilot your drone in real time from a first-person perspective. All you need to do is install an app, synchronize your phone with the drone and you’re set to go!
The app is extremely intuitive and easy-to-use. It will take you literally 30 seconds to install and set it up. Once done, the drone will become just like an extension of your Smartphone. You’ll be able to use it virtually anywhere, anytime.
The first person view feature is also really handy for filmmakers. It allows you to monitor what you record and therefore pick the best recording angles with ease.
The Micro Drone 3.0 has a stand-alone Wi-Fi camera that can record either directly to your phone via Wi-Fi or to an SD card in your drone. The quality of the camera is more than decent, allowing you to capture HD 720p video.
In order to start recording, press the “Function” button on your controller or the “record” button on your phone. Depending on the button you’ve pressed, the drone will either store the video to your phone via Wi-Fi or to the internal SD card.
This drone also has in-built stabilization systems. One of them is the 6 Axis MEMS Gyroscope. This contributes to a better recording quality. The camera still shakes when you’re flying during windy days, but that’s a common issue for any small drone, sadly.
Fun fact: the modular design of the drone allows you to use the camera as a stand-alone video recorder. In order to record video, you don’t even need to mount it in the drone. For instance, you can use it as a webcam or as a supplementary camera for your phone.
Acrobatics and Mobility
The drone features four acrobatic movements. Those are great to observe and are simply breathtaking when you’re using the first person view. The stunt mode is activated by a switch on the controller, and it allows you to choose the direction of the flip.
As I’ve mentioned earlier, it also allows you to fly the drone upside down, without any issues. All you need to do is install the reverse props and turn on the “invert” switch on the controller.
The quadcopter features balanced props that add a lot to its stability. It’s crazy, but every prop was balanced individually. This allows the drone to fly in perfect straight line without any axis deviations.
The Micro Drone 3.0 can be considered one of the most stable and maneuverable quadcopters of its kind. It has several sensors and auto-leveling mechanisms. It also features anti-wind algorithms let you to fly in winds of up to 45mph without an issue.
Battery life is crucial for any drone. Most of the drones of this size category come with a 380mAh battery. The Micro Drone 3.0 has an above-average battery capacity of 550 mAh, which allows it to fly and record for 8 minutes.
The Micro Drone 3.0 is small, yet it can achieve the same speed as its biggest brothers. For instance, it can match the Phantom 4 when it comes to max speed and acceleration. It can hit the 45 mph (72 km/h) mark in few seconds.
While other drones are easy to crash even at 10 mph, the Mini Drone 3.0 features sensor assisted flying. Along with its auto leveling features, this allows you to avoid obstacles with ease and crash less often.
That being said, even if you crash, the drone robust design can take a beating. Sturdy construction is important for mini drones. The reason is simple – no matter how good you are, there is always a risk of a random wind gust that might crash the drone into a tree or a wall. Even the best quadcopter pilots crash their drones from times to times. Therefore, a sturdy construction is a must, rather than just a convenience.
The drone also features a return home function. Whether you’ve lost sight of the drone or are simply lazy to pilot it back manually, you can always press a button and the drone will fly back to you.
What Is Included in the Package?
The Micro Drone 3.0 comes in a carton box. It also includes:
– 1x Controller, which works with four AA batteries (not included)
– 1x USB Battery charger – you can charge it directly from any PC or MacBook
– 1x 720P HD camera module
– 1x FPV viewer
– 1 Year Limited Warranty
– Additional accessories such as a charging cable, extra sets of blades, prop mounting tool and guards, and a user manual.
– The phone holder, included in the controller, can hold a Smartphone of up to 6 inches.
– The Micro Drone 3.0 app is compatible both with iOS and Android.
– The app has a user-friendly interface and it includes access to a series of videos that explain how to use all of the functions in a quick manner. This makes it really easy to get started.
– The package includes mountable prop guards, which are quite useful during windy days.
– You can also change the camera module and even add an external mini-gimbal for further stabilization enhancement. The gimbal isn’t included in the standard package.