Although there’s no exact definition for nano drones, a simple rule of thumb would be any drone that can comfortably sit in an open palm.
With this description in mind, an upper limit of five horizontal inches should do.
Drones in this size category have a couple of advantages. First, they’re great for flying indoors.
Second, they’re actually ideal for beginners since they’re flown close to the operator which makes it easy to see how the vehicle responds to the remote controller.
As with any other size drone, maximum enjoyment comes from selecting the best nano drone. Here are seven models that stand out.
Top 5 Nano Drones
|Drone Name||Flight Time||Recharging Time||Remote Control Range||Removable Battery||Size||Remote Control Type||Our Rating|
|Holy Stone HS190||7 minutes||40 minutes||164 feet||No||4.5 x 4.5 x 1.2 inches||2.4GHz RC||4.8/ 5 stars|
|Virhuck GB202||5 minutes||30 minutes||100 feet||No||1.6 x 1.6 x 0.8 inches||2.4GHz RC||4.5/ 5 stars|
|Syma X20||5 minutes||50 minutes||164 feet||No||4.1 x 4.1 x 1.0 inches||2.4GHz RC||4/5 stars|
|Hubsan Q4 H111||5 minutes||30 minutes||164 feet||No||1.8 x 1.8 x 1.0 inches||2.4GHz RC||4/ 5 stars|
|JJRC H36||5 minutes||50 minutes||100 feet||Yes||3.4 x 3.4 x 1.2 inches||2.4GHz RC||3.8/ 5 stars|
7. UDI U46 Mini Drone
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The headless mode on the U46 drone means any side of this drone can immediately assume the role of leading edge when the operator wishes to shift flight direction.
This 3.6-inch by 3.2-inch by 1.3-inch high drone has a weight of 0.8 ounces which let it handle calm outdoor conditions but it works best inside.
Launching and landing the craft only requires the push of a single button and it’ll provide you with 8 minutes of fun with a range of 50 feet. Equipped with a brilliant LED headlight, it’s as enjoyable in the dark as in daylight.
Outfitted with permanent rotor guards and an out-of-range alarm, both day and night flying are also pretty stress-free. A price range of $25 to $30 only adds to the fun.
- 8-minute flight time.
- Out-of-range alarm.
- Low-battery alarm.
- Headless mode.
- No pre-programmed tricks.
- Non-removable battery.
Related: 8 Best Small Drones
6. Eachine E010 Mini Quadcopter Drone
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With a base measuring 3.7 inches on each side and standing 2 inches tall, the E010 is one of the larger drones on this list, but the dollar price in the mid-20s is relatively small.
In exchange, you can look forward to a best nano drone capable of both flips and 360-degree rolls with just the touch of a button.
With the press of another button, the drone will also automatically return to you when the low-battery alarm goes off.
If things turn bad, the tough little drone with permanently-affixed duct guards around each propeller can tolerate a few mishaps. With highly-visible LEDs, it’s great after dark.
- One-button return.
- Low-battery alarm.
- No hover feature.
- Short flight time.
5. JJRC H36 Mini Drone
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Like many other nano drones, the H36 has fixed ducts around the propellers for solid protection. Unlike many others, it has four-bladed propellers for added safety.
This best nano drone measures 3.4 by 3.4 by 1.2 inches and weighs 2.7 ounces which makes it best suited for indoor use. Still, it does have an exceptional range of up to 100 feet.
The H36 includes headless mode, one-button return, and 3D flip mode that lets it completely flip around on its back before righting itself.
You can put it through its paces for about 5 minutes before having to recharge the battery between 30 and 50 minutes.
The good news here is that it’s easy to swap it with a spare to keep the action going.
- Removable battery.
- No stationary hover mode.
You might also like: 10 Best Mini Drones
4. HUBSAN Q4 H111 Nano
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The Q4 just occupies 1.8 by 1.8 inches of horizontal space while sitting just one inch high. Like its very tiny rival, the Virhuck GB202, the Q4 is basically an indoor best nano drone.
Despite this, the remote control can maintain contact with the drone up to 164 feet away. Whether indoors or out, thanks to its array of LEDs, the drone will operate with or without additional lighting.
It’s also pretty similar to the GB202 with about 5 minutes of flying time and a 30-minute total recharge. One downside, though, is a lack of supplied propeller guards.
On the other hand, the propellers are designed to pop off easily to prevent major damage. A dollar cost in the upper teens makes this another good buy.
- Flight range.
- One-button 360-degree rolls.
- No propeller guards.
- Indoors only.
3. Cheerwing Syma X20 pocket drone
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There’s no guessing about coming or going with the Syma X20 since it has red LEDs at the front end and green ones at the rear.
Then again, it also features headless mode. The 4.1 by 4.1 inch drone keeps a low profile with a height of just under an inch.
This feature, combined with lightweight permanent blade guards let the X20 easily cut through the air as it performs one-button flips and rolls.
It also offers one-touch mid-air hovering. Even better, it can do all of this up to 164 feet away from the remote for an average period of 5 minutes.
When the battery needs recharging, expect about 50 minutes. This best nano drone is typically priced between $25 and $30.
- One-button flips and rolls.
- One-button hovering.
- Headless mode.
- One-button launch and landing.
- Permanent battery.
- 50-minute recharging time.
2. Virhuck GB202 Mini Drone
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Taking nano to the extreme, Virhuck designed the GB202 with dimensions of just 1.6 by 1.6 inches around and 0.8 inches in height.
The 0.42 ounce drone includes a few things you would think could only be found in bigger drones like headless mode, 360-degree flips , and one-button return.
Primarily meant for indoor use, the GB202 still offers radio contact with the controller up to 100 feet.
With 5 minutes of flight time and 30 minute of recharging time, it rivals bigger competitors in these categories too.
Best of all, this rugged drone with fixed propeller guards comes with a dollar price tag in the lower teens that’ll make it attractive to anyone starting out with drones.
- One-button return.
- Pre-programmed 360-degree flip.
- Indoor use only.
1. Holy Stone HS190 Foldable Quadcopter
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The most outstanding feature on this best nano drone is its folding propeller beams.
Bending them inward reduces the horizontal dimensions to 2.1 inches in both directions so it can be stored in the remote’s center compartment.
Standing 1.2 inches tall, the 3-speed drone has a fully-extended footprint of 4.5 inches by 4.5 inches with the rotor guards attached.
The battery keeps it going for up to 7 minutes but when it’s drained, expect about 40 minutes for a complete recharge.
Given its size and a weight of 0.96 ounces, this drone can be flown outdoors up to 164 feet in a slight breeze.
Once airborne, the drone’s capable of tricks like completely flipping over and spinning on its vertical axis.
Thanks to a built-in altimeter, it can even hover in mid-air. With a price range around $35 to $50, it’s definitely a bargain.
- One-button takeoff and landing.
- Folding propeller mounts.
- Headless mode.
- Vertical flipping, 360-degree rotation, and stationary hover.
- 40 minute recharging time.
- No automatic emergency return.
You wouldn’t think it but nano drones can specialize in quite a few different tasks. This makes choosing the best nano drone a bit difficult.
Probably the best solution is to settle on top large nano drone and a top super-tiny one. For the larger range, the HS190 edges out the others mainly on its high customer ratings.
In the tiny category, the Virhuck GB202 wins due to built-in tricks and blade guards.