Know Any Budget Uavs?

I came across our local DEA agency who request us to suggest to them some sort of video surveillance to be mounted on some kind of aerial remote controlled helicopter or something that can float but has to be small enough not to attract too much attention to the perpetrator while the DEA crew on the ground level able to see the live feed and record this UAV feed.

I know there are military versions of that, but that would be an overkill and way overbudget. Any suggestions?


DJI Phantom quadcopter and RF Link wireless cameras should work. Video would be analog and low resolution, though.

We have a number of recommendations and insights in our Aerial Surveillance Recommendations discussion.

I'm not sure of the budget available, but Microdrones' target market appears to be non-military, agency type outfits.

Interestingly, I stopped by a booth at a conference I recently attended who sold these UAVs similar to the Microdrone. Their starting price was $20K. The flight time was 20-30 minutes. The bird had 4 props and could transmit full HD back for about 1/2 mile. It could also find its way back to the starting point autonomously. Their primary markets were police and fire, and they were attempting to bing it to the security marketplace.

Interestingly, I also saw a controllable drone at a Brookstone Store for a "bit" lower cost ($300) that is controlled by Iphone.

Good geek fun, but not so sure I could sell it to the client.

Here's one at Brookstone for about $300. No the most professional grade, only 165' range but has a built-in 720p camera.