3D Robotics Solo


Novice Suitability


Total Performance




Max Speed Rating


Endurance Rating


Payload Capacity Rating


Camera Quality Rating


Pricing Rating


Communication Range


Utility Rating


Critical Metrics Rating


Construction Quality


Operational Ease


Accuracy Rating


User Support Rating


The 3D Robotics Solo is a professional and adaptable system, designed for outdoor operation with excellent stability and automatic functionality, programmability, and camera control for aerial filming. It received high scores across many of the individual measures, indicating the Solo is a solid option for more experienced users to conduct outdoor multirotor operations, ensure safety, and support more advanced uses, upon mastery of basic operational skills. The system scored higher than average for maximum speed (top scorer), endurance, payload capacity, camera quality (using separately purchased GoPro), utility, critical metrics, construction quality, accuracy and availability of reported values, and user support; but less than average for pricing (more-expensive), communication range, and operational ease (being limited to only outdoor operations significantly affected this score). The controller provides for very comfortable operation of the system, can be combined with a smart-device, and is one of the best designed and intuitive camera controls (paddle) of all the systems examined; the system is also capable of carrying a user-configured payload. It should be noted that the inability to operate the system indoors (in accordance with manufacturer instructions) limits the usability for novice and advanced users and is inconsistent with similar systems; this substantially affected operational ease scoring. The Solo can be an appropriate choice for novice operators planning to use it outdoors and under the supervision and assistance of an experienced operator. It also provides very advanced features and capabilities, supported through a smart-device (3DR Solo app), for experienced users looking to perform aerial filming, training, or research.


  • FPV enabled (WiFi/digital, 5.8GHz, 720p streaming to smart-device app)
  • Multiple operational modes (CableCam, Orbit, Follow, Selfie, Pano, Zipline, user-defined geofencing, automatic takeoff/landing, and Return to Home)
  • Standalone flight simulator app available
  • HD video streaming, smart shot panning and one-touch control, real-time airspace safety information, and recording to smart-device camera roll
  • Flyaway warranty protection
  • Three-axis gimbal and GoPro integration, as priced (available without; camera not included)
  • 5,200 mAh Smart battery (4S 14.8V LiPo)

Additional Specs

  • Max Speed: 55 kts
  • Endurance: 20 mins
  • Payload Capacity: 1.95 lbs
  • Maximum Photo Resolution: 12 MP
  • Video Resolution: 4K
  • Price: $1,361.85 USD (as tested)
  • Communication Range: 2,640 ft
  • Battery Capacity: 5,200 mAh

More information at the 3DR website.


  • Well constructed, compact design, very visually appealing
  • Most robust gimbal of all systems tested
  • Controller was very comfortable; very intuitive camera control through vertical paddle switch
  • Stable in flight
  • Easy to maintain and configure
  • Excellent documentation with a large user community


  • Requires smart-device to access full system functionality
  • Cannot be flown indoors (3DR Solo user manual states “Don’t fly Solo indoors,” p. 25)
  • High performance capability and responsiveness may not be ideal for a novice operator (responsiveness can be adjusted)
  • Complex to operate (controllability challenging; difficult to land), when GPS positioning is not enabled
  • 3DR Solo app appears more complex than comparable smart-device apps with some indicators being difficult to read (with exception of battery remaining, which was clear and conveniently located)
  • Firmware is continually updated (impacts the accuracy of printed documentation)
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