Sky Viper m500 Nano Drone. Great little entry-level drone, durable and fast, with a set predesigned stunts.
This is the fourth generation of a toy-drone which has been nominated for a toy of the year in 2016. The producer, Skyrocket, is an international company well known for its line of high technology-based toys. A pedigree like that makes this a candidate for the best-buy title. We are going to take a look at this mini-drone and try to find out if the nomination was well-deserved.
Sky Viper m500 Nano Drone Pros and Cons
- Small and fast. It is like a little bee. Cute and fast
- Good maneuverability. It handles nicely and can make stunts with one push of the button.
- Solid battery. The battery can handle 6-8 minutes of flight time, and it recharges in 20 minutes.
- Adjustable sensitivity. It has two settings, low and high, for beginners and more experienced users.
- Headless mode. Turn it off to fly easier.
- Indoor use preferred. It is small and lightweight. It can be flown outside only when there is no wind.
- The remote. It has too many buttons, and that can be overwhelming for a beginner.
- Blades shields. They are missing. Even though the drone is very well built and durable, and there are spare blades in the set, it would be nice to at least have an option with removable shields.
- Size – 1.9 x 1.9 x 0.8 inches
- Weight – 8.5 ounces
- Battery – Lithium Polymer, 3,7 V, 100 mAh
- Charge time – 25 minutes
- Flight time – 6-8 minutes
- Special features – barrel rolls and flips in four directions
- Sensors – 6-axis digital stabilization
- Transmitter – dedicated transmitter 2,4Ghz
The drone is small, really small. Palm-sized, around 2.0″ body size, not including the blades. It is lightweight, 8.5 ounces, so it is mainly intended for indoor use. It can be used outdoors, providing there is no strong wind. It has a nice, compact and sturdy design that looks like it can handle a lot of furniture bumping. It does not have blades protectors, so they may be the weak point. Fortunately, there are 4 replacements darts in the standard package. The drone itself looks very compact and well build, so it can handle a lot of bumping. It has four LED lights that make it quite visible both in good lighting and bad. Two are green, and the other two are red colored, marking the front and the back end of the drone.
The 2,4 GHz transmitter is well designed and lies comfortably in the hand. It requires 3 AAA batteries that are not included in the package. At first glance, it may seem full of unnecessary buttons, especially considering that it is a low range drone. But each of them has its function. Besides the standard buttons for vertical and horizontal control, it has additional buttons that enable it to make stunts like left and right barrel rolls and flips.
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Problem with so many buttons is that, although this product is marketed as an entry-level drone, it requires a lot of practice in order to figure out the many buttons and functions available.
Fortunately, there is a practice app that you can download. It’s better to crash around a virtual drone than a real one.
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3,7 V, 100 mAh lithium polymer battery, which is included in the package, doesn’t seem too powerful, but it is enough to give this little guy a 6-8 minutes flight time. The time needed to recharge is around 20 minutes. The Viper m500 Nano Drone comes with a USB charging cable.
The downside is that the battery is built in, and not designed to be replaced.
Auto launch & land
A very common feature in entry-level drones is featured here also and enables the user to get the drone in the air with just one push of the button. When you want to get it down on the ground, it can easily be done with another push of the corresponding button.
One of the fun features, the ones you would have to be experienced to perform on other drones, right barrel roll and flips, can be done in- you guess- one push of the button.
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A very useful function for beginners, which allows you to make the drone hover in one place, without having to perform continuous minor adjustments with the sticks on the remote.
Adjustable sensitivity. It can be low when the drone will fly and react slower, which is great for beginners, or high, which is preferred by more experienced.
Sky Viper m500 Nano Drone FLYING EXPERIENCE
6-axis digital stabilization and software upgrades, variable modes of flight sensitivity make this little fellow very stable and easy to fly. However, some time to adjust may be needed. You need to learn hover, trim, and spin before you start flying it around obstacles. The speed by which the drone is propelled upwards when auto take-off function is used can be somewhat surprising for a beginner and it can be difficult to control after. That can lead to some crashes. Some practice and patience are needed to learn the controls. Especially important is to practice and learn controls indoor. Then you can take it out, but only when the wind is not blowing, the auto-features combined with strong wind can make this lightweight drone unpredictable. It has two flight modes, auto, and manual. The auto is recommended for beginners, while the manual is for more experienced users. Another option that helps beginners is the sensitivity setting. It can be adjusted to low and high. The first one is more appropriate for beginners so they can have more time to react and learn how to handle the drone.