Flying drones is fun! Let’s face it – it’s not just for kids, it’s for grown-ups too! There’s no such feeling as flying a drone in the local park, especially if you have little ones who will watch in awe as their hero carefully navigates an expensive piece of tech through and above the trees. However, that doesn’t mean you can fly your drones anywhere you want.
There are limitations! Drastic limitations, mind you!
No matter where you live if you fly your drone near an airport, chances are it won’t come close to it. We’ve had numerous incidents in the past where people flew their drones way too close to airplanes. These days, the most expensive drones (ones that can do massive damage) have no-fly zones built into their system. Geofence is the most commonly used term in this regard. Long story short, it basically prevents drones from flying over or near airports and other controlled airspaces.
But, drones without geofencing do exist! While we highly condone and advise against using drones without geofencing for flying at or near airports, there are certain scenarios in which geofence, or the lack thereof, could prove useful.
But, before we go any further, here’s a list of the best drones without geofencing you can purchase right now!
Best Drones Without Geofencing in 2022
Why would someone want a drone that doesn’t have geofencing? Well, people who are living within controlled airspace (not necessarily airports) won’t even be able to take off with their drones. It can be a real nuisance, having to drive half an hour every time you want to take your drone for a spin.
Once again, we at DronesGlobe are all about safety – make sure you never use your drone to fly at or near airports! Doing so could endanger people’s lives and is rightfully a felony!
With that out of our way, here are the best no-geofence drones currently available:
4. Ruko F11 Pro
Ruko F11 Pro is the first drone on our list here! It’s a relatively unknown company making a relatively unpopular model. Well, only the first half of that statement is true! You want to know why? Well, it’s because Ruko F11 Pro doesn’t have geofencing! Yep – plus, it’s one of the cheapest smart drones that don’t have active geofencing. Take that DJI!
Simple but Effective
Ruko F11 Pro is a nice little drone! It weighs in at around 520 grams which means it does have to be registered. But, don’t let that discourage you – this thing is fast, precise, and comes packed with smart features! If the latter is the focal point of your search for drones without geofencing, then there’s really no need to look any further!
It’s a great little mid-range bugger that can do most stuff much pricier DJI models can. Of course, there are certain caveats. It can hold on for around 25 minutes of flight time, even less if you’re recording the video for the entire duration.
The Camera won’t Blow You Away
We’re reaching the final points here and I’m afraid we’re going to finish off on a bad note. Let’s talk about the camera! While this thing does shoot 2.9K aerial videos and 4K still images, it’s not really at the level of entry-level DJI models. If you’re purchasing a drone specifically for aerial videos, I’m afraid you’ll have to aim higher. Ruko F11 pro is decent for aerial photography, but videos just won’t be able to cut it, I’m afraid!
3. Hubsan Zino
Hubsan Zino is the middle-of-the-pack drone here! It does have a relatively hefty price tag to its name, but it sure as heck doesn’t fail to deliver in the most crucial areas. As far as geofencing is concerned, you don’t need to worry about a thing with this little bugger. It doesn’t have it, end of story!
What Does it Have?
How about we start with the fact it has a ton of smart features. It’s not exactly on DJI’s level, but it’s not far either. Plus, considering the price, Hubsan Zino’s features are more than suitable! When talking about raw numbers, this little bugger can handle close to 1 kilometer of FPV distance. Controlling range exceeds that, but don’t go all crazy as you might lose signal. On the bright side, you don’t have to worry about this little bugger falling down from the sky. It has all the safety features you can think of and even if you push it too far away, it will come back to safety.
Hubsan Zino isn’t just easy on the eye – it packs quite the punch too! This little thing can get you from point A to point B in no time… well, not you but your footage… but I’m sure you catch my drift. It has a solid little camera too! We’re not talking about a prosumer sensor here, but you can still expect above-average mid-tier footage.
The most important factor is definitely the 3-axis gimbal which does an amazing job of combating vibrations. But, the dirty work is done by the onboard 4K sensor that shoots great stuff. Mind you, we’re not just talking about brilliant aerial photos but videos too!
2. Potensic Dreamer Pro
Potensic Dreamer Pro is the next drone on our list! It definitely deserves the second spot here! It’s not exactly a top-tier model, but it’s not priced as one either. However, it brings great all-around performance and actually manages to compete with some of similarly priced DJI models. It’s much bigger than most of them, which is a double-edged sword. That said, if you’re looking for a beefy drone without geofencing and you’re not willing to break your bank for flagships, then Potensic Dreamer Pro is made for you!
What are You Getting Here?
You’re getting a very capable drone, that’s for sure! Potensic Dreamer Pro can handle solid winds due to its chunky size. It sports powerful brushless motors too, allowing it around 22mph top speed which is quite good for the price it goes for.
As for the camera module, the sensor is on the smaller side. We’re talking 1/3-inch sensor here. The shots and videos won’t blow you away, but they aren’t meant to. They’re solid for hobby stuff, which is what the price suggests anyways.
Do You Like These Numbers?
What about the numbers? Don’t worry, we’ve saved the best for last! Potensic Dreamer Pro comes with a 3,000maH LiPo battery. It’s not the chunkiest one, that’s for sure, but it can still hold on for around 25 minutes of flight per charge. You can get additional ones too, just make sure to take a short break between flights!
As for the range, Dreamer Pro can reach as far as a mile. Yep, FPV and controlling distance work this far. I know, I know… DJI models at this price point go a lot farther. But hey, they have geofencing – this little bugger doesn’t!
1. Autel Robotics EVO II
Finally, Autel Robotics EVO II. The second-gen EVO model continues in the footsteps of its predecessors. It doesn’t have geofence. Well, technically EVO II models have been updated with firmware update v2.7.25 and now do possess geofencing… but it’s not the active kind. You see, unlike DJI models, Autel EVO 2 won’t prevent you from taking off entirely. The folks over at Autel Robotics hope you will be responsible and won’t fly in a way that puts other people’s lives at risk.
When talking about hardware, Autel Robotics EVO II can get around 5 miles of operating range. The flight time is brutal too – more than half an hour of active flying and recording. This thing won’t let you down. Plus, it has smooth and cold-running brushless motors meaning you can purchase extra batteries and fly them one right after another. Please do note, though, that running more than two back-to-back flights isn’t a good idea no matter how good the motors are… unless it’s freezing outside, that is.
Moving on, you can choose between three different camera setups. The one meant for consumers offers an 8K sensor; the one meant for prosumers offers a 6K sensor with an adjustable aperture. There’s also a FLIR infrared sensor if you require that type of stuff. This thing covers everything!
One of the Best Drones Out There
The fun doesn’t end there! Autel Robotics EVO II is an absolute charmer across all departments, even design! But, this orange bugger is much more than just a gorgeous looks. This thing can fly! It’s precise, it’s fast, it’s robust… and most importantly, it’s packed with smart features that make flying it an effortless task.
Do you need more information to buy this thing? I mean, come on… The only real downside is the massive price tag of its name. But, if you’re flying for commercial purposes and you’re in need of drones without geofencing, they definitely don’t come better than this one!
How Does the Drone Geofencing Work?
In DJI models, geofencing works in an active manner. It communicates with the GPS receivers to understand where the drone is located and then uses built-in digital airspace mapping to prevent it from flying over restricted areas.
There are, however, drones with different types of geofencing – the passive kind. This kind isn’t intrusive – these geofencing systems won’t prevent your drone from flying in restricted areas. Passive geofencing systems will only warn you that you’re committing a crime.
DJI models have several geofencing zones too – red, gray, blue, and yellow. They all have different meanings so it’s best to do some research before you start flying!
Once again, flying drones without geofencing above or near airports is not just extremely dangerous but outright stupid and is punishable by law!
Do Autel Drones have Geofencing?
In the past, Autel Robotics drones were often the choice of many drone pilots simply because of their lack of geofencing. However, their newest model EVO II got it with a firmware update last year. But, we’re talking about passive geofencing here, one that won’t prevent the drone from flying in controlled airspace but warn you about it.
What Happens if you Fly a Drone in a No Fly Zone?
Several things might happen if you fly a drone in a no fly zone, depending on the drone and its settings at the time of entering the no fly zone.
- Drones with active geofencing won’t be able to fly over the controlled airspace.
- Drones with passive geofencing will warn you that you are entering controlled airspace and committing a crime.
- Drones without any sort of geofencing will fly just like it’s a regular Wednesday.
Can You Disable DJI Geofencing?
DJI geofencing can be disabled, but only in certain scenarios.
DJI drones can fly in blue zones after a process called Self Unlocking. It doesn’t take a nuclear physicist to do this – just click through a series of steps and follow the on-screen instructions and you’ll unlock the geofence in a matter of minutes.
DII drones can fly in red zones too, but require a process called Custom Unlock. It’s not nearly as straightforward as Self Unlock, though. You will need to be authorized by DJI and possess either LAANC or other documentation (f.e. COA) to fly in these areas.
As for gray zones (near airport runways), these cannot be disabled or unlocked… legally, that is.
Does DJI Mavic have geofencing?
Yes, the original DJI Mavic got a refined version of geofencing to ensure airport safety following several incidents which included their drones flying at or near airports.
Does DJI Mini 2 have geofencing?
Yes, even though DJI Mini 2 is a sub-250-grams drone, it does come with geofencing. There are ways you can turn it off, though. If that’s something you’re interested in and you’re a tech-savvy guy, it’s an option. However, we advise you don’t tamper around with stuff like Geo System as it can get you in trouble.
Does DJI Air 2S have geofencing?
DJI Air 2S is one of the best mid-tier drones out there. If you’re thinking of getting it but you’re living in a no-fly zone, then I’m afraid you better look elsewhere. DJI Air 2S does come with DJI’s active geofencing, meaning it won’t be able to take off and fly in certain no-fly zones.
Does DJI Mavic 3 have geofencing?
Yes, DJI’s latest flagship, the Mavic 3, does have geofencing. It’s not surprising considering the sheer price of the drone or the fact that it’s the next-gen flagship all other manufacturers are going to try and copy for the next year or so.
How do I Bypass DJI Geofencing?
If you desperately want to fly somewhere you’re not supposed to, then I’m afraid you’ll have to get down and dirty! There are ways you can bypass this active form of geofencing, but the folks over at DJI did their best to complicate the procedure as much as they could.
You’ll have to tamper around with the firmware, downgrade it, install third-party apps and/or use third-party services to trick the drone’s GPS into thinking it’s somewhere else.
All of this is highly illegal and we advise against it! Stick to the FAA rules, people – don’t fly where you’re not supposed to!
Will a DJI Drone Fly Near an Airport?
No sir, it won’t! DJI drones enforce strict regulations in terms of geofencing. All-new DJI models come with active geofencing which will prevent them from flying within no-fly zones. There are ways you can bypass these security measures, though. So, if you’re tech-savvy and desperately need to crack DJI geofencing, there are tons of tutorials online! Only certain models can be cracked, though!
Can I Fly a Drone in Controlled Airspace?
Yes, you can fly a drone in controlled airspace. Not every drone, but yes, generally you can fly in controlled airspace.
But, there’s a big difference between can and should! Can you – yes, you can! Should you – no, you shouldn’t! Most flagship devices these days have active geofencing which physically prevents the drone from flying in controlled airspace. Still, if you’re stupid enough to buy a cheaper toy model just to mess with airplanes and potentially kill someone, you deserve all the repercussions you’ll get!
And there you have it guys!
That’s everything you need to know about drones without geofencing!
And, one last time – just because you buy a drone that doesn’t have active geofencing, doesn’t mean FAA rules and regulations don’t apply to you. Fly responsibly… ALWAYS!
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