Holy Stone HS200
- HEADLESS MODE AND ONE KEY RETURN
- First Person View 720P HD REAL TIME Video Camera
- MOBILE CONTROL
- 2.4G 4CHANEL 6-AXIS GYRO TECHNOLOGY
Holy Stone HS200 Drone Review
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There are not a lot of budget drone options in the market. And the ones that are there aren’t always the most robust, versatile, or feature-packed machines. But every now and then, there arrives a contender that tries to punch above its weight. The Holy Stone HS200 drone could probably be that one. In this Holy Stone HS200 drone review, we’ll take an in-depth look at the quadcopter, go through its set of features, pros and cons, and determine if it truly stands out or is just another machine of its kind.
• 2.4Ghz transmitter
• Four spare propellers
• Prop guards
• Screws and screw driver
• USB charger
• LiPo 650mAh battery
• Phone holder
• 4GB microSD card and card reader
• First-person view (FPV)
• Mobile control
• Altitude hold
• Return key
• Headless mode
• One-key flips
• Gyro stability
Design and Build
For an RC hobby-grade drone, the HS200 is surprisingly well-built. Though it isn’t unique or doesn’t completely stand out from other drones in terms of aesthetics, it does come in two colors – red and black. If you want your drone to be a bit more visible when it’s up in the air, go with the red paint job. Not to mention, the fully-equipped LED lights for navigation and dark black propellers offer this quadcopter good aesthetic appeal.back to menu ↑
The HS200 FPV can fly outdoors well, even in moderate wind conditions. However, it could get a bit shaky and wavy in windy conditions. Considering the price you’re paying for this drone, such shakiness at high altitudes cannot be considered an issue, since more expensive and robust quadcopters could also have such flying troubles.
Also, the drone offers four different flying modes depending on your skills. If you’re just starting out, it’s recommended you begin with mode one or two and then move on to mode three and four. Try the different speed modes out so that you can determine the ideal speed level for your skills and preferences. At the highest speed, the drone would move significantly fast. Such speeds can be handled only by seasoned drone flyers. If you try the fastest speed without prior experience, you would not only end up crashing your drone, but also hurt bystanders in the process.
As far as flight time goes, expect the HS200 to soar high for seven to nine minutes. If you are just cruising around with headless mode turned on and zero flips, you could end up extracting a few more minutes. Kindly note the winds and other things that determine flying conditions also have their say. The following are some noteworthy features about the drone’s flight:
• Headless mode: The headless mode is a useful and popular drone feature. It’s good to see Holy Stone incorporating this in its budget drone. If you are flying a drone for the first time, it’s important you turn this feature on, at least during your initial few flights. The headless mode lets you grasp your quadcopter’s orientation. More importantly, you will not have to worry too much about the orientation, as the headless mode manages that for you intelligently. The headless mode’s one-key return feature also lets you direct the quadcopter to the transmitter. This feature comes in handy when you have lost control of the drone.
• Altitude hold: This feature is your sneak peek to what more powerful and more capable drones offer. Basically, this feature lets your quadcopter fly and hover on its own at a particular altitude.
• First-person view (FPV): This is a feature that basically provides you a new pair of eyes so that you could see through the drone’s eyes or camera. If you ever wanted to know what the bird’s eye-view was really like, this FPV feature shall give you a taste of it. Besides the excitement attached to this feature, FPV lets you choose what your drone should shoot or take images or videos of.
• Gravity sensor mode: This mode is an advanced feature that you usually don’t see in budget drones. Surprisingly, the HS200 has this feature built in.
• One-button landing and take-offs: The controller comes with a button that lets you manage the take-off and landing of your drone with a single button. If you are not confident about landing the drone smoothly or without crashing it, press the button and see the drone taking off and landing just like the doctor ordered.
• Six-axis gyroscope: The six-axis gyroscope facilitates improved handling, better stability, and also 360-degree flips.
Make sure you charge the drone completely prior to taking it out for a spin. Have the USB charger and some spare batteries handy since you may need them anytime. Flying the drone on partial charge can significantly reduce flight time and hamper your experience.back to menu ↑
HS200’s transmitter or remote control is ergonomically designed that makes continual use comfortable. It has a modest LCD screen that could be used for adjusting transmitter settings. The throttle could be used for controlling the drone’s flight and can be let loose to allow the drone hover at a set position.
You may even use your smartphone as the transmitter. To do this, you must download a smartphone application. The app employs gravity sensors that help you control the device’s movement. Even the slightest of motion on your smartphone would influence the drone’s position during flight. Using your phone as a controller is not recommended right off the bat, since it could be a bit too sensitive and you may end up crashing your drone easily as a result. It’s recommended you first use the dedicated remote control. Once you’re familiar with the drone’s movements and the commands that dictate those movements, you may move to your smartphone.back to menu ↑
Camera and Battery
The HS200 is equipped with a 2MP camera that can capture video and pictures. The camera can record, shoot, and stream both video and images at 720p, which is acceptable at best. Moreover, it lets you shoot video and images from your Android phone or iPhone, wherein you may even stream FPV video live.
Holy Stone has a smartphone app that lets you connect to the drone through Wi-Fi. As expected, the HS200’s camera is fixed and not user-replaceable. There is no camera gimbal to secure it either. Besides the 720p camera, the quadcopter could also be directly controlled using your mobile phone’s gravity sensor mode. This means you can control the drone by simply moving and holding your smartphone. More flight options and camera functions can be controlled further and accessed through its app interface.
As aforementioned, the battery is a 650mAh, 3.7V variant that offers seven to nine minutes of flying. Charging the battery could take approximately an hour. You may buy spare batteries to extend the drone’s flying period.back to menu ↑
Additional Features and Repair-ability
As aforementioned, the drone comes packed in with extra propellers that you may use if you crash the drone and damage the existing propellers. Also, the motors in this machine are replaceable. If the drone doesn’t fly, it could be a motor issue. The user-replaceable nature of the motors renders repair-ability easy and convenient. And to help you detach the motors, Holy Stone even bundles in a screwdriver.
The Holy Stone HS200 drone is great value for money. The price, camera and FPV mode, stability, gravity sensor, headless mode, altitude hold, and other features make this drone a solid bargain. At this price, you would not come across a drone that offers so much. The camera doesn’t capture the greatest video and images and the flight time is a bit too short too. Besides a few such shortcomings, the drone nails it on all other fronts. Thanks to the more-than-100-meter transmission range, the drone can fly good distances. During summer, spring, and the fall, the drone would keep you completely occupied. If you’re serious about flying this drone for hours together, make sure you buy quite a few extra batteries so that you don’t have to wait an hour for the batteries to recharge for the next flight.back to menu ↑
Listing of PROs and CONs
• Nice design and build
• Defects can be easily replaced
• Solid flight characteristics
• Stability and multiple flight modes
• Good-quality transmitter
• Decent camera
• Not compact enough to fly indoors
• Controller is a bit too small for large hands
• One-key home return functionality doesn’t always work smoothly
• Flight time isn’t long enough
• No Full HD video recording
• Charging can take its own sweet time, and there are also no batteries bundled in.
The Holy Stone HS200 quadcopter is your entry into the world of drones. If you’re looking for a drone that lets you get your feet wet, the HS200 is a bang-on purchase. The drone could be your practice tool that helps you build necessary skills and confidence to buy a more expensive and capable machine in the future. The HS200 is a bonafide beginner’s drone since it bundles in a bunch of spare propellers knowing you would end up crashing the drone at least once during practice. The advanced flying modes would certainly keep experts interested in this drone. However, the short flight time could be a dampener.
Tyler West received a Bachelor Degree in computer science from The University of Texas Austin. Tyler has been working as a full-time computer programmer for the past 3 years. In his spare time, Tyler’s favorite hobby is flying drones. One of Tyler’s life goals is to become a full-time drone pilot.
- Nice design and build
- Defects can be easily replaced
- Solid flight characteristics
- Stability and multiple flight modes
- Good-quality transmitter
- Decent camera
- Not compact enough to fly indoors
- Controller is a bit too small for large hands
- One-key home return functionality doesn't always work smoothly
- Flight time isn't long enough
- No Full HD video recording
- Charging can take its own sweet time, and there are also no batteries bundled in.