I am searching for a drone to work with point cloud modeling. The drone must have features such as orbital flying (flying around the subject with the camera always aimed to the center) while shooting photos (not video) at automatic time-lapse (2s).

I can't buy a DJI, and I already know that FIMI X8 SE can be used for modeling. However, there are some serious quality issues with the latter.

What are some other, low-cost alternatives with the features I mentioned?

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    $\begingroup$ What about a used or refurbished DJI Mavic Mini? I think that there can be some good offers for this drone after DJI Mini 2 has been released. Litchi seems to have orbit mode and time-lapse, however I'm not sure if these modes can be used simultaneously. Or are DJI drones completely unsuitable for you, even when not new? $\endgroup$
    – fdermishin
    Commented Feb 11, 2021 at 21:38
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    $\begingroup$ I think ardupilot has what you need, but I'm not sure what pre-built options there are, and how much they cost. Would building your own drone be an option? In that case I think you can build one quite cheap using ardupilot as the software, and a GoPro as the camera to to time-lapses. $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 13, 2021 at 16:07

1 Answer 1


Okay, one more suggestion, This is only $127 (97 with Amazon coupon aplied) It is the Uranhub foldable GPS drone. This is all the information I could get on it:

Specification: Video Resolution: 2K

Control Distance: 220M / 720FT

Maximum Flight Relative Height: 120M / 394FT

Modular Battery:2 Li-Po Battery

Flight Time: About 15 Mins per battery

Drone Battery: 7.4V 1000mAh(rechargable)

Charge Time: About 2.5 H

Expand Size: 12.912.92.2 In

Folding Size: In

The only problem is that you have to time-lapse the footage afterward, but there are plenty of apps and sites that do that, here is a website that will help:

Invideo (time-lapse website)

Drone purchase link

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    $\begingroup$ This seems to be a "link only" answer. Due to the nature of the site, it's important that you add more detail to your answer. It would help to explain what basic features a drone needs for cloud modeling and how this specific drone might work for that. Thanks! $\endgroup$
    – Jacob B
    Commented Jan 19, 2022 at 3:24
  • $\begingroup$ I changed it up a bit to be more specific $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 22, 2022 at 2:30
  • $\begingroup$ Looks much better, Thanks! $\endgroup$
    – Jacob B
    Commented Jan 22, 2022 at 19:04

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