The Ehang Ghostdrone 2.0 VR is very easy to get in the sky. It’s very easy to get out of the sky (safely, I mean). You can fly it with your phone. You can check things out in first-person view with the companion VR goggles. It’s significantly cheaper than other drones with 4K cameras. It’s close to a perfect laundry list for an entry-level drone or a casual pilot.
- 1125 grams
- 40 kmh (25 mph) in GPS mode, 70 kmh (43 mph) in manual
- 4K, 12-megapixel camera
- 64 GB microSD
- iOS and Android companions app used to pilot
- 1,600mAh battery with 25-minute flight time
You’ll fly the drone via a companion app, and that’s also where the headset becomes important. You’ll pair your device to the headset, rather than the drone, which means that for compatibility across iOS and Android, you’ll only need to pick up another headset, not an entirely new drone. The law dictates you need to keep the drone in line of sight while you’re flying it, so this is strictly a two-man operation.
The VR headset is gimmicky, but it’s an excellent inclusion if you find yourself with a young kid as your co-pilot. Or, let’s be honest, a drunk adult as your co-pilot. The headset offers a live feed from the drone’s onboard camera, and what’s more, you can control the camera angle by moving your head. I had a couple of connectivity issues with the video feed, but the novelty far outweighed the troubleshooting.
It’s worth noting that in the UK and Australia, you aren’t allowed to wear the headset while you’re piloting the drone, so it’s really leaning on providing a group experience. That normally only extends as far as “watch me fly my drone. No, you can’t have a turn,” so it was nice to be able to offer something to anyone out flying with you.
Avatar control means that it’s not just touch controls to fly. You can also use your phone’s gyroscopes to fly your drone by tilting the phone in your hand. It’s remarkably easy to fly and, more importantly, the automatic return-to-home when the drone loses connection or the battery runs too low means it’s always going to land safely. You won’t even mind handing control to the aforementioned young person/drunkard.
When we took it out for a spin, we were getting about 25 minutes of flight time for a fully-charged battery. The battery also has a very handy screen that gives you at-a-glance information about charge levels and overall battery health. Extra batteries are available, and a recommended investment.
The camera is capable of 4K video at 30fps, but if you need a better frame rate you can drop the resolution and ratchet up the speed to as much as 1080p at 120fps. Still comes in at 12 megapixels. Low-light shooting left something to be desired and while you can take photos and video, it’s not a professional-quality drone. Save it for personal snaps and videos.
The Ehang Ghostdrone 2.0 VR sells for $1,099, £830 or, lucky you Australia, AU$999. It comes in at a fraction of the price of other 4K camera drones, and it comes with a 12-month warranty. First-time drone pilots should definitely inquire within.