Holy Stone HS440 – top drone for a fair price
The Holy Stone HS440 is an excellent drone with camera in the low to mid-price range. The foldable quadcopter has a Full HD camera, enables FPV live image transmission to your smartphone and comes with two batteries for a total of up to 40 minutes of flight time.
Design and weight
The all-black Holy Stone HS440 has retractable arms and can thus be transported in a space-saving manner. When folded, the copter measures 12.5 x 8.1 x 6 cm. When unfolded, the HS440 measures 29 x 19.5 x 6 cm.
With a weight of 166 grams, the drone is relatively light. Therefore, you should only fly outdoors in calm or moderate winds, otherwise the drone can drift.
Features and flight characteristics
The Holy Stone HS440 has various features that make the drone easier to use, especially for beginners. Takeoff and landing, for example, work conveniently at the push of a button. In the air, the drone independently maintains the current altitude (Altitude hold) without you having to permanently operate the thrust controller.
If the quadcopter drifts in one direction while hovering, the flight attitude can be balanced with the help of the trim function. Two different speeds are available for the flight. The Holy Stone HS440 is controlled either via the included remote control or simply with the user’s own smartphone. For the operation of the controller, 3 AAA batteries are needed, which are not included.
In general, the HS440 responds promptly to flight commands and shows a very agile flight behavior. Thanks to the relatively powerful motors, the drone can withstand moderate wind, even if this requires some countersteering due to the lack of GPS.
Should you accidentally lose control of the drone, the four motors can be brought to an instant halt via the emergency stop function.
Flight time and range
The flight time of the Holy Stone HS440 is about 20 minutes per battery. Since the drone comes with two batteries (3.8 V, 1900 mAh) from the factory, you can enjoy a total of up to 40 minutes of flight time before the batteries need to be recharged.
By the way, you are warned of a low battery level by a beep from the remote control. To charge the batteries, simply use the two included USB charging cables. You can either connect them to the power adapter of your smartphone or directly to a PC, laptop or power bank. One charging process takes about 180 minutes.
The control range of the Holy Stone HS440 is about 110 yards (100 meters). In height, up to 100 feet (30 meters) are possible.
The camera of the Holy Stone HS440
The built-in camera is a Full HD camera that records photos and videos in 1920 x 1080 pixels. The angle of the camera can be adjusted via remote control during flight – from horizontally forward to vertically downward.
The camera’s field of view is 112°, making it wide-angle but not creating a fisheye effect. Photos and videos are stored either on a microSD card of up to 32 GB or directly on the user’s own smartphone. Photos are saved as JPEGs, videos as MP4 or AVI. The quality of the recordings is exceptionally good for a drone in this price range.
In order to view the live FPV image of the drone camera on your own smartphone, you first have to download and install the free “HolyStone-FPV” app. The app is available for both Android and iOS devices.
The smartphone can then be attached to the remote control in the practical holder. The range of image transmission is approximately 55 to 110 yards (50 to 100 meters) – depending on the ambient conditions. A wide, open area without obstacles such as buildings or trees offers the best conditions here.
Unfortunately, the Holy Stone HS440 does not have a Follow Me mode. This mode is generally only found on more expensive camera drones that also have a GPS module.
However, the drone has several other flight modes, such as the so-called Tap Fly mode, in which you can set waypoints in the app, which the drone then flies over independently.
An Orbit mode is also available, where the copter can circle around a set point while recording a video.
If you want, you can also have the Holy Stone HS440 perform automatic 360° rotations at the touch of a button.
Beginners in particular will also be pleased with the Headless mode. If you activate this mode, a simplified control of the drone is available. For example, if you command the drone to change direction to the front, back, left or right, it will always fly in the desired direction, regardless of how it is currently oriented in the air. There is therefore no need to rethink based on the drone’s orientation in this mode.
However, we recommend that you do not fly in Headless mode for too long and also learn how to control the drone normally, as not all copters have this mode by a long shot.
In addition to the flight modes mentioned so far, the Holy Stone HS440 also has voice control, which allows for various commands to control the drone. However, precise maneuvering is extremely difficult in this mode, which is why we recommend using the controller.
Scope of delivery
- 1 x Drone with camera
- 2 x battery (3.8 V, 1900 mAh)
- 1 x remote control
- 2 x USB charging cable
- 4 x spare propellers
- 1 x screwdriver
- 1 x hard case
- 1 x instruction manual
The Holy Stone HS440 is an excellent camera drone for beginners, which convinces especially with its good camera as well as the two included batteries. The video recordings of the Full HD camera make an extremely good impression and deliver high-quality recordings for a drone of this price segment.
The flight time of about 20 minutes per battery is a very good value and since the drone comes with 2 batteries, a total of up to 40 minutes of flight is possible. All in all, the Holy Stone HS440 is an excellent drone with camera at a very fair price.