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What is Headless Mode on a Drone?

Learning how to fly a drone as a beginner can be very daunting. You will often end up getting overwhelmed by the controls and the direction your drone is flying into. As a result, these drones end up crashing or getting lost. In order to prevent that, drones nowadays include a new type of flying in order to enjoy yawing, rotating and rolling casually without the high learning curve. This is what we call a headless mode on a drone. 

In this article, I will briefly explain all there is to it to answer your question “What is a headless mode on a drone?”

A Beginner-Friendly Feature  

Drones have become more popular these days than ever before. Suddenly, a lot of people are interested in buying hobby drones similar to a modern version of a kite flying. The problem is, not everyone can fly a drone easily. There is a huge learning curve in droning and the last thing a person who just wants an aerial RC vehicle is to study the basics like flying a mini plane. 

Arguably, the hardest part of flying a drone for beginners is having to know which path their drone is going to. You could imagine the confusion when you finally lift off from the ground and yaw it straight forward, but it actually moves towards you. 

The head or the camera becomes even more unclear if you are controlling it from your line of sight. Without a VR or FPV drone headset, you risk making your drone go the opposite direction of where you intend it to go.

While the headlights and taillights surely do their part in determining which is the front and back part of the drone when flying, a more casual and very beginner-friendly flying mode was introduced: the Headless Mode.

With Headless Mode, you can fly in any direction you want since your drone does not have a head or a back now. This makes it easier for novice pilots and inexperienced drone users to enjoy flying without the need to learn the ropes.

Some drones include this mode despite having a camera, just like any of DJI’s UAVs. However, these drones usually cost a lot. But fortunately, there are drones that are inexpensive; entry-level UAVs that are easy to control thanks to the Headless Mode.

A Great Way to Have Fun with Drones  

Traditional drones are just like piloting a mini airplane. Learning it can be tough, but not if you are using headless mode. This was originally made for quadcopters but has since then transferred over to all the better drones on the market. If you are just looking for a drone to play with and not spend your time on racing, taking pictures or doing a blog, a drone with a headless mode is good enough. 

With Headless Mode, all you need to worry about is yawing, rotating, throttling and rolling properly. You do not even need to know which is the front or the back of the drone because, again, there is no head.

It basically turns your drone into an RC type - free from FPV modes, complex calibrations and headtracking. This way, you can fly your drone within your line of sight without having to worry about which direction you are facing. It makes flying a drone all the more inviting for everyone of all ages to try out. 

Just Because It’s Easy Doesn’t Mean You Can Use It Anywhere  

Even if the drone is like a toy at this point, you should still keep in touch with the basic rules and regulations of drone laws. After all, it is still a UAV. Remember to always fly a drone on legal areas like open-wide plains and drone hubs. Your backyard can be a good place to fly a drone too, as long as your neighbors don’t feel uncomfortable. If they do, just tell them your drone is headless and without a camera (disabling the camera drone is unlikely to help). 

Remember to always fly only below 400 feet and away from government buildings or groups of people. Even if you try to convince them that your UAVE does not use a camera, a drone is still a drone, no matter the context.

If you have drones for you kids, make sure you tell them about the rules too so you and your kid won’t get into trouble with the authorities. 

Quick Tips Before Buying a Drone  

If this article managed to convince you to buy a drone, Please heed my tips:

First of all, if you are still new to this hobby, consider buying a cheap one. A lot of drones these days can only cost around $50 to $200 depending on the size and features.

And, if you just want to completely have fun with a drone on headless mode, go with a nano or micro type. They’re cute, they’re small and they are usable even indoors


Will Headless Mode significantly improve my droning skills?

Headless mode is mainly flying for fun. If you wish to get better at aerial photography, you need to know how to fly in FPV mode.

Do all drones have headless mode?

Not all of them. Industrial and heavy-duty drones do not have headless mode to begin with.

Should I spend at least $300 for a drone?

If you are just a beginner, I recommend going with very affordable yet effective drones from the likes of Syma and Holy Stone who have drones that are cheaper than $100.

Is headless mode that easy?

Yes. Think of it as like flying an RC helicopter or even sailing an RC boat.

Do I need a phone in order to operate the drone?

The only time you need a drone is if you are planning to fly with FPV mode on. You do not need a phone if you are going to fly on headless mode.

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