Holy Stone HS720 Review: 26 Minutes of Flight At This Price…What Gives?

Last updated November 28th, 2019
Holy Stone HS720

When doing your drone homework for your next purchase, what do you usually look for? Is it budget-friendliness? Beast features and specs? Or a combination of both?

Whatever you may decide on, ensure that you won’t contract buyer’s regret when you get the item.

Holy Stone has made an effort to shorten this tedious selection process by bringing together the perfect balance of price and performance with one of its mid-range offerings: the Holy Stone HS720.

The Holy Stone HS720 gives you intelligent flight features, GPS-assisted operation, a 2K-capable camera, and other gimmicks and retails around the $300 price point. This combination of goodies may appeal to you and other drone pilots who looking for something more advanced than just a beginner’s toy. The craft looks like a step in the right direction if you want to progress your drone hobby, with bonus features for content creation if needed.

However, is everything that the Holy Stone HS720 is said to be capable of the gospel truth, or is this another case of a hard pass?

As always, we’re brutally honest in this Holy Stone HS720 review, so read on to find out more.

Quick Specs

WeightUnloaded: 453 grams
SizeLength: 14.4 in
Width: 13.2 in
Height: 2.4 in
SpeedMax: 44 mph
SignalRange: ~1.6 km
Operating Frequency: 2.4 GHz
BatteryFlight time: ~26 mins
Capacity: 2800 mAh
RecordingCamera: 110°, 2K resolution
Holy Stone HS720 Drone
1,299 Reviews
Holy Stone HS720 Drone
  • 2K FHD Camera with Image Stabilization: The optimized full HD Camera built with Shock...
  • GPS Assisted Intelligent Flight: Never lose the drone. It returns automatically whenever...
  • Configuration Upgrade: The intelligent battery works for 26 Mins for each charge; the...
  • Simple Operation: Equipped Multi Sensors guarantee hovering with great stability and high...
  • Considerate Controller: The control range of 2.4GHz transmitter reaches to 3000 feet high...

Holy Stone HS720 Features

GPS + GLONASS

Holy Stone has opted to equip the HS720 with a dual GPS and GLONASS combination, giving it better location and positioning abilities. It allows the drone to properly utilize its GPS-assisted smart functions, which would otherwise be useless without it. It also makes the drone stable during automated flight or when commanded to hover in place, eliminating the possibility of drifting or flying astray.

Furthermore, this dual navigation system implementation means that either one can serve as a backup system in case one fails, keeping your drone safe in the event of a system malfunction.

Return To Home

Using its GNSS, the Holy Stone HS720 records its initial takeoff point and saves it for later when the Return to Home function is initialized. This has the craft backtracking its path to land exactly where it took off. This can be handy during low battery levels, signal transmission failure, or other unavoidable flight errors. You can also manually activate the mode with a dedicated button to make retrieval convenient.

Custom Flight Path

The Holy Stone HS720 can follow a pre-determined flight path thanks to the Holy Stone Ophelia smartphone app which allows you to set waypoints for the drone to fly on. This hands-free gives you the freedom to change positions or control the camera perspective as the drone goes along the digitally-set route.

It’s features like this that make the HS720 one of the best cheap photography drones around.

Orbit

Much like other drones in this price bracket, the Holy Stone HS720 has an Orbit cinematography mode, giving you a circular filming preset to work with. Simply choose the subject you want to shoot, and the Holy Stone HS720 will automatically fly in a complete circle, panning smoothly to capture every dimension of your desired subject.

Follow Me

What’s an intelligent drone without a Follow Me function?

The Holy Stone HS720 doesn’t know the answer to that though as it does boast the feature, giving you extra hands where there are none.

On solo excursions, you can initiate the Follow Me mode to shoot automatically in the third-person perspective by following you and keeping you in the frame, while capturing the essence of the background. It even matches your speed for that consistent distance when filming.

One Key Takeoff/Landing

While the Holy Stone HS720 is no beginner’s drone, it’s nice to know that it has a One Key Takeoff and Landing function. If you’re extra lazy and want to get things over with, you won’t have to worry about maneuvering the craft and instead use this feature to excess.

Headless Mode

Another beginner function of the Holy Stone HS720 is its Headless Mode. Headless Mode totally disregards the drone’s front-end orientation and does what you command the controller to in a straightforward manner, meaning if you push the directional lever left, the drone will turn left, right is right, and the rest is for you to find out.

Battery Life

The Holy Stone HS720 sports a beefy 2800 mAh battery that supplies it with up to 26 minutes of flight time.

This is super impressive given that most drones that can achieve this level of juice are at least double — if not 3-5 times — the price.

Charging the battery pack is another story though, as you’re better off doing chores than waiting for it to fill up with its 5-hour recharge time. If you’re not too keen on extended flights, the included intelligent battery should be enough, but if you’re left with a pang of longing after it runs out, we’d recommend that you snag extra battery units for good measure.

Camera

The Holy Stone HS720 is outfitted with a 1/3 inch CMOS sensor, 2K camera capable of capturing videos in the aforementioned resolution, and stills at 2048×1152 resolution. Furthermore, it has a wide-angle lens with over 110° of FOV to get you more out of that landscape goodness. It can also tilt with up to 90° of up and down adjustment, giving you some options with camera perspectives while in flight.

While no stabilization features are offered, the camera is encased in a shock-absorbent assembly. This works well in countering motor vibrations, but moderate winds affect image stability easily, so be wary of environmental conditions before flying.

The 2K resolution offered by the drone’s camera gives you extra clarity and detail that 1080p fails to capture. Be mindful of lighting conditions though, as its lack of dynamic range might result in bland pictures or grainy videos in low-light conditions.

Ease Of Use

The Holy Stone HS720 does away with the gimmicky-looking controllers and goes with a decent, professional aesthetic, going minimal with the curves while featuring simplistic handles that reduce the footprint even more.

It goes with the usual dual joystick layout, with four dedicated function buttons populating the edges of the controller’s face. Sitting in the middle is a monochrome LCD screen that gives you a peek on basic telemetry data such as battery status and signal level.

The Holy Stone HS720’s controller has a latch unit at the top to accommodate most smartphones, giving you better access to its features via the Ophelia smartphone app, especially the FPV feed from the camera.

However, do note that the controller isn’t rechargeable like most of its contemporaries today. It relies on two AA batteries to function. Stock up on those Evereadys and Energizers if you wish to go on extensive flights.

Design and Build Quality

The drone is mostly constructed from ABS plastic, and is accentuated by alloy parts in its frame, making it able to take some damage should crashes or collisions happen especially since the craft doesn’t have an obstacle avoidance system.

The Holy Stone HS720 isn’t the smallest drone around, and it carries a bit of heft at almost half a kilo in weight, but this doesn’t take away the fact that the craft is portable, fitting in most medium-sized backpack compartments easily.

Portability is boosted by the fact that it is foldable — something that is again usually reserved for more expensive UAVs than this.

Performance

The Holy Stone HS720 outflies most of its competitors, clocking at 44 mph, which is impressive given its weight. Control response is seamless as well, with a transmission range of almost 1.6 kilometers. That’s more than enough ground to cover given the drone’s impressive flight time.

We attribute this nimbleness to the Holy Stone HS720’s brushless motors, which are leagues better than their brushed counterparts, as they are almost frictionless, generate less heat, give a significant performance advantage, and are more power-efficient too. This accounts for the longer flight time of the drone too, allocating power to the motors in a consistent and controlled manner.

Holy Stone HS720 Drone
1,299 Reviews
Holy Stone HS720 Drone
  • 2K FHD Camera with Image Stabilization: The optimized full HD Camera built with Shock...
  • GPS Assisted Intelligent Flight: Never lose the drone. It returns automatically whenever...
  • Configuration Upgrade: The intelligent battery works for 26 Mins for each charge; the...
  • Simple Operation: Equipped Multi Sensors guarantee hovering with great stability and high...
  • Considerate Controller: The control range of 2.4GHz transmitter reaches to 3000 feet high...

Final Thoughts

The Holy Stone HS720 performed better than what we anticipated, knowing Holy Stone’s reputation for throwing drones in the same price bracket but with different performance hits, not to mention their confusing naming convention. But for the price, this quadcopter doesn’t disappoint.

We can even say we’re impressed.

Imagine getting beefy flight times, intuitive flight features, a 2K capable camera, and a rugged, foldable design with approximately $300.

Though we believe that the software can be improved further, as well as tweaking the smart functions to a tee, one cannot dismiss the fact that the Holy Stone HS720 hasn’t been skimped on its essentials.

Competitive in specs, features, and price, this drone has all the other players in its weight class making a run for their money. And it’s come for yours, too.

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