- 1080p Full HD Camera
- Built-in GPS with return to home function
- 6-axis gyroscope
- Controller with LCD Screen
- 20-minute flight time
Hubsan are a popular drone manufacturer that have carved out a following from consumers seeking out a cost-friendly drone that is suitable for beginners. While the Hubsan H501S X4 isn’t their cheapest model and on the higher end of the entry-level price range, it’s still got a reasonable price when compared to similar types of models on the market.
H501S X4 Build
The H501S X4 is available in two colour options, with black and gold or white and gold models, both of which are easily visible when flying. It initially appears quite oversized, but this can be attributed to the propellers which are notably larger than the rest of the drone.
Upon closer inspection the H501S X4 is compact, not to mention being incredibly lightweight, weighing just 410g. This makes the drone easily enough to transport on the go as you can quickly remove the propellers with a screwdriver for carrying in a bag.
There is one slight issue with the propeller design however, with the legs being quite short compared to other drones, making take-off and landing difficult in certain conditions. For instance, taking off in longer grass is often a struggle, so it’s recommended to only take off using shallower surface areas.
The H501S X4 comes with a large controller that has a built-in LCD screen. It’s sizable for a controller because of the screen, requiring a whopping eight batteries to operate. That said, the controller is very intuitive to operate, making it especially helpful for beginners looking to come to grips handling a drone.
Thanks to the LCD screen the controller provides video relay so you can see where the drone is flying without needing to use a smartphone. The interface isnt’ the newest however, but it’s easy enough to learn after a few tries.
Along with giving a live first-person video feed, the screen lets you know the height reached when flying and the distance (in metres) from your current location, while it starts to warn you once the battery starts running low.
Certain features, such as the GPS coordinates, are not that essential but the controller remains very functional all the same.
Some prefer to synch their phones to the drone for a vide feed and extra screen, but the H501S X4 controller offers an all-in-one solution that offers almost identical functionality as a synched mobile device.
As mentioned, the short legs may make launching the drone difficult for beginners, but other than that the flight performance of the H501S X4 is impressive. It has a good amount of speed to it, which is great fun for beginners, and while you’ll not be winning any races with the drone it’s a good model to learn the basics of flying.
For instance, the H501S X4 comes with a built-in GSP that provides a one touch return to home function. Simply keep the controller within distance of the drone and hit the return home button for the drone to be immediately recalled.
It’s a great feature for beginners that are worried about losing or crashing the drone, letting you recall the drone with no fuss. Headless mode also helps in this regard, providing the operator with simple control using the right stick regardless of the direction of the drone.
Manoeuvring drones by their direction is often one of the hardest techniques to learn as a beginner, so the headless mode allows users to get a good amount of practice flying with the easier controls, after which you can progress to natural controls once your comfortable with the controls.
Perhaps one of the most impressive aspects of the flight performance is how long the H501S X4 operates for. It’s got an incredible 20-minute battery life on a full charge, which is certainly among the best for drones in this price range.
However, it’s important to remember that only lasts this long when in optimal conditions, which is basically dry, warm, and a lack of wind. Speaking of the wind, you may struggle to operate the H501S X4 in windier conditions, although that is true of many entry-level drones, and a little bit of winds shouldn’t be too impairing in any case.
The H501S X4 comes with a 1080p Full HD camera fitted to the nose of the drone. While the camera quality is fantastic, broadcasting in Full HD, the issue with the camera is the lack of gimbal or stabilisation.
These features are important for providing a drone with suitable stability for taking photographs or recording videos. So, while the H501S X4 has a good quality camera there is a lack of stability when in flight that often detracts from the image quality.
You can still capture great photographs and videos, but the quality may be lacking for a 1080p camera, especially for photos and videos taking during windier conditions.
The LCD screen on the H501S X4’s controller displays any video feed or photo you are planning on taking, although both features cannot be used at the same time. If recording or taking photos, the screen indicates the remaining time left to record or how many photos can be taken according to the memory left on the SD card.
Sadly, the overall quality of photos and videos is likely to be lacking when using the H501S X4. It’s got a great camera, but without stabilisation its very difficult to take high quality HD photos or videos, which is a shame because the camera is certainly capable of capturing such footage.
The Hubsan H501S X4 is an excellent drone for beginners. With simple controls, useful flight modes that includes a built-in GSP with return-to-home, it’s a great choice for those looking to learn how to fly a drone.
While the camera isn’t great for taking aerial photos or recording high quality video, it does allow users to learn how to fly the drone using a first-person live feed, which is certainly useful for anyone looking to advance their drone flying skills!