10 Best Underwater Drones in 2020

Last updated: August 25, 2020
Published 1:10 pm

Gladius Mini Intelligent Underwater Drone

PowerVision PowerRay Explorer Underwater Camera Drone with 4K UHD Camera for Diving and Boating

QYSEA FiFish V6 Underwater Drone

Published 1:10 pm

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Underwater drones, also known as ROVs, are waterproof, submersible drones that let you capture the wonders of the sea world. ROVs allow you to explore the deep blue sea, giving you access to cold waters, shark infested waters, and new fishing spots.

Underwater drones are classified into two groups, which are the UUV, also known as Unmanned Underwater Vehicles and ROV, also known as Remotely Operated Vehicles. The difference between them is the UUVs are preprogrammed, and communication with the vehicle may be difficult due to how slow the underwater connection is, that is why most professionals prefer the ROVs because it uses more direct communication controls.

ROVs use a tether cord to respond to directional communication; this also gives you some sort of safety net because you can always pull the drone back to the surface. Underwater drones can be used for a number of things such as surveying for wreckage, fish or even for property assessment, it can also be used for fun, as a companion when diving and to capture documentary or theatrical videos.

When purchasing an underwater drone, there are some features that should be taken into consideration; these features are; The operating depth, battery life and cruise speed.

Operating Depth: Underwater drones vary in their specifications, and choosing the right one will depend on your preferences. The most important feature to check out is the depth the drone can handle; some drones can go as low as 10m while others will reach 150m. Drones that can handle the pressure present in lower depth are quite expensive. Also, keep in mind that the deeper the drones go, the lower visibility becomes, so it is advised to get a drone that has powerful headlights so that you will be able to take crisp 4K videos even as deep as 150m in the ocean. The drone also comes with a tether cord that is the same length as the depth it can reach.

Battery Life: ROVs all have different battery lifespans. It ranges from 60 minutes to 480 minutes; depending on your intended use, the battery life matters a lot. The time you will spend capturing the wonders of the sea depends on the battery life of the drone you purchase. The battery life also depends on the cruise speed; high speed will drain your battery life faster.

Cruise Speed: There are several obstacles for your ROV to overcome when it goes into the water. If it will succeed depends on its speed. ROVs have to fight against the water current; that is why speed is crucial to their success. If you intend to use your underwater drone for deep dives, then you need to invest in a high speed underwater drone camera. The speed of the drone depends on its thrusters and water current in the intended area, so keep that in mind when making your choice.

Now you know what to look for when purchasing an underwater drone, let us take a look at some of the best underwater drones available. These drones are easy to use and make beautiful, out of this world images.

With all that being said, here is the list.

The Best Underwater Drones Are Reviewed Below

1

Gladius Mini Intelligent Underwater Drone

The Gladius Mini Intelligent Underwater Drone is a mini size underwater drone. It is a compact and stable drone that has an intelligent five thruster, which is the first in the world. The Gladius Mini uses intelligent control algorithms to dive deep and surf the seas easily with its stabilizing propellers.

It features a 4K Ultra HD camera that captures UHD videos at 1080p or 4K resolution; it can also take 12MP photos. Thanks to the Gladius Mini’s five stabilizing propellers, it can easily and quickly cruise through the deep sea. It doesn’t have a gimbal system, but its propellers should allow you to get a stable enough video. Its small size allows it to maneuver between obstacles.

It has a battery time of 120 minutes and a depth of 100 meters, including its tether. It comes with a remote controller that allows you to control the drone; you could attach your mobile device to view the live footage sent from the camera.

Key Features:

  • Depth of 100 meters
  • 120 minutes run time
  • 4K Ultra HD camera
  • LED Flashlights
  • One key depth lock mode
  • Live footage streaming

Specification:

  • Brand: CHASING
  • Model: Gladius Mini Intelligent Underwater Drone
  • Dimension: 18.4*15.9*9.9 inches
Pros
  • It is a great drone for leisure, sports and research
  • It has an extensive runtime
  • It has an excellent camera quality
  • It features LED flashlights which allow you to make crisp videos even in the dark depth of the ocean
Cons
  • It doesn’t have a gimbal system; footage might be a bit shaky
  • The controller is not waterproof
  • Some reviewers have complained about losing connection during a dive

2

PowerVision PowerRay Explorer Underwater Camera Drone with 4K UHD Camera for Diving and Boating

The PowerVision PowerRay Underwater Drone is the only drone that has sensors that can detect fish from as far as 80 meters away. It features a 4K UHD camera that is capable of taking 1080p videos and a camera stabilizer that allows you to get top-notch images and videos. It also features two 450 lumen lights, which let you see underwater, but it may not be sufficient enough if you’re diving as deep as 25 meters and more.

The PowerVision PowerRay Underwater Drone reaches a maximum speed of 1.5m/s in still water and has a battery life of 270 minutes after a single charge. It also has a Vision+ app that is compatible with iOS and Andriod devices. It comes with first person view goggles.

Key Features:

  • FPV goggles
  • PowerSeeker fish finder
  • Remote bait drop
  • Three thrusters
  • 4K UHD camera
  • 1080p lives streaming

Specification:

  • Brand: PowerVision
  • Model: PowerVision PowerRay Explorer Underwater Camera Drone
  • Dimension: 465*270*126mm
Pros
  • It comes with interesting app sharing features
  • It is elegantly designed
  • It has a great camera quality
Cons
  • It tether cord could be longer

3

QYSEA FiFish V6 Underwater Drone

The QYSEA FiFish V6 Underwater Drone has a portable design. It features directional freedom that allows you to achieve a 360 point of view, which is great for underwater photography and filmmaking. It features a 4K Ultra HD camera that takes videos at 30 FPS, and it has 166-degree wide-angle lenses that take even more comprehensive pictures. This drone can also make videos at 120 FPS in 1080p. It allows you to edit footage with its 8* slow motion feature and electronic image stabilization.

It has a battery life of 270 minutes and a smart controller that has an HDMI output live stream feature. It also has a VR headset that immerses you into the world of virtual reality. It reaches a depth of 100 meters and comes with a compact tether spool.

Key Features:

  • Six thrusters allowing it to move in every direction
  • 270 minutes of diving time
  • VR goggles for a real life experience
  • 4K UHD camera
  • 1080p slow-motion recording
  • Can take RAW DNG photos

Specification:

  • Brand: QYSEA
  • Model: QYSEA FiFish V6 Underwater Drone
  • Dimension: 27.17*18.11*9.65 inches
Pros
  • It takes quality images and footage
  • It has a slow motion feature
  • It is multi-directional
  • It has a great battery life
  • It has an image stabilization system
  • Great customer service
Cons
  • It doesn’t perform well in murky waters.

4

Geneinno Titan Underwater ROV

The Geneinno Titan Underwater ROV is the world’s first underwater drone to have a robotic arm. It is equipped with a 4K UHD camera and 3000 lumen lights, which allows you to capture pristine images even in the dark depths of the sea. It features a 160-degree wide angle lens. It sends 1080p live streams to your phone, and the recordings can be accessed from the memory card that is in the drone.

The Geneinno titan has six built-in thrusters that allow it to reach a maximum speed of 2m/s or 4 knots. It has a battery life of four hours when it is fully charged with a diving depth of 150 meters. The drone comes with a controller app that allows the user to control the drone using their mobile phone or tablets.

Key Features:

  • 3000 lumen ultra bright LED lights
  • Robotic arm attachment for picking things
  • Six thrusters
  • The battery lasts four hours
  • 4K UHD camera
  • 1080p live transmission

Specification:

  • Brand: Geneinno
  • Model: Geneinno Titan Underwater ROV
  • Dimension: 15.4*13.7*6.5 inches
Pros
  • It is one of the deepest diving drones
  • It has a battery life of four hours which is enough time to surf the ocean
  • It has a robotic arm that lets you pick things up
  • There are updates which fix old issues
Cons
  • Bluetooth connectivity may be an issue

5

AquaRobotman Nemo ROV Underwater Drone

The AquaRobotman Nemo Underwater Drone is one of the fastest underwater drones around, it has just four thrusters, but the design allows this drone to quickly and easily maneuver around with a maximum speed of 2m/s.

The drone comes with an onboard QAS balancing system, which keeps the drone upright; this, in turn, allows the user to capture stable, clear images even in unstable conditions.

Key Features:

  • QAS balance stabilizing system
  • 4K UHD 30fps video
  • HD 1080p 120fps resolution
  • 16MP megapixel still images
  • Diving depth of 100 meters
  • A maximum speed of 2m/s
  • Detachable battery
  • Video live streaming
  • VR mode

Specification:

  • Brand: AquaRobotman
  • Model: AquaRobotman Nemo ROV Underwater Drone
  • Dimension: 15.91*11.42*4.49 inches
Pros
  • Its VR mode allows you to have an incredible in-person experience
  • It has a battery life of three hours
  • It takes beautiful images and footage with its 4K camera
Cons
  • You have to purchase extra batteries if you want a longer running time

6

Chasing Innovation Dory

The Chasing Innovation Dory is a smaller version of the Gladius Mini. It features a five thruster design that allows it to tilt its body up and down. It comes with a 1080p camera and a 250 lumens light that works great in shallow waters; its tether cord is 15 meters in length. The Dory drone can reach depths of 15 meters (50ft) with a maximum speed of 1.5 knots and a battery life of one hour.

It comes with no remote controller; you have to pilot the drone using your mobile phone or tablet and a 720p live footage. Its app has the necessary features.

Key Features:

  • Wi-Fi buoy
  • 49 inches tether
  • 2MP photos
  • 1920*1080 videos at 30fps
  • f/1.6 lenses
  • two 250 lumens LED lights

Specification:

  • Brand: Chasing
  • Model: Chasing Innovation Dory
  • Dimension: 7.4*3.6*9.7 inches
Pros
  • it is affordable
  • it comes with a waterproof Wi-Fi buoy
  • it doesn’t scare away fishes
  • it is compact
Cons
  • it takes only 2MP 1080p photos

7

PowerVision Powerdolphin Wizard Water Surface Drone

The PowerVision PowerDolphin swims along the surface of the water, it is able to see below and above the water level. It features an app with a phone ready remote controller that allows you to use your mobile device as a monitor (the app is available for Andriod and iOS). It has two propellers that enable it to remain on the surface; it also has a 4K camera that can be extended 150 degrees into the water or 70 degrees above the water surface by its arm (which acts as a camera gimbal).

It features a GPS return to home function and a PowerSeeker sonar device, which allows the user to look for fishes or map the water; it uses grid patterns to achieve this. It also features a bait dropping box. It has a maximum speed of 10 knots and a battery life of two hours.

Key Features:

  • Wireless remote controller with a transmission range of 0.5 miles
  • 4K UHD camera
  • 12 Megapixel images
  • 5,800 mAh battery
  • GPS, self-righting
  • Sonar
  • 220-degree rotatable camera

Specification:

  • Brand: PowerVision
  • Model: PowerVision Powerdolphin Wizard Water Surface Drone
  • Dimension: 21.5*8.5*4.6 inches
Pros
  • It has sonar mapping and baits dropping features
  • It has wireless control
Cons
  • It cant be submerged

8

ThorRobotics Underwater Drone ROV

The ThorRobotics Underwater Drone is a great underwater explorer robot. It is controlled through a 100-meter able, which is connected to a black plastic base station that opens to show a monitor and a switchgear. It has four thrusters, which gives it enough force to use the robot arm to pick up objects weighing up to 10kg. It features a 4K UHD camera that takes a 1080p live stream and two 300 lumen lights. It allows you to see what the camera is viewing, but the hands are too close for it to be in perfect focus.

It has a diving depth of 30 meters (98ft) with a maximum speed of 1.5 knots. Its diving time is four hours.

Key Features:

  • Four vector thrusters
  • Robotic arm
  • 4K UHD camera
  • Sonar
  • 12 Megapixel images
  • Two lumens LED lights

Specification:

  • Brand: THOR Robotics
  • Model: ThorRobotics Underwater Drone ROV
  • Dimension: 360*200*200 mm
Pros
  • It comes with a robotic arm that allows it to pick up things
  • It features four strong thrusters
  • It has a battery life of four hours
Cons
  • Its design is inelegant, so also is its controller
  • The robotic hands do not allow you to get a perfect focus

9

Youcan Robot BW Space Pro Underwater Drone

The Youcan Robot BW Space Pro Underwater Drone may not be one of the fastest drones, but its camera quality is superb. It features a range of cameras that includes a 6x zoom lens. Its four thrusters allow it 45 degrees ina nay direction.

It has an AI object tracking function. It is controlled using the Dive App, which is available on iOS and Andriod with intelligent features such as depth hold and automatic adjusting of lights (which are 1,380 lumens for each of the two headlights). It comes with a joypad like remote or you could purchase the mini-tablet grip controller.

Key Features:

  • Four thrusters
  • 9600mAh battery
  • Intelligent auto-adjusting lighting
  • 45 degrees rotation, up and down
  • Diving depth of 100m (330ft)
  • Speed of 3 knots
  • The battery life of up to five hours

Specification:

  • Brand: Youcan Robot
  • Model: Youcan Robot BW Space Pro Underwater Drone
  • Dimension: 380*348*168 mm
Pros
  • It has zoom features
  • It has an elegant design
  • It takes beautiful images and footage with its camera
Cons
  • It has no left or right vertical thrusters

10

ROBOSEA Biki, APP Control Underwater Drone

The ROBOSEA Biki, APP Control Underwater Drone, is a wireless ROV; it looks like a fish and even has a robotic tail fin. It has an internal storage of 32GB and also features a 4K camera. This drone takes high quality videos and images; it also has 150-degree lenses and a stabilizer for much better footage. It has two 114 lumen lights.

The drone features an obstacle avoidance function that allows it to detect and evade obstacles within a 30cm range. It has a return to home feature which uses GPS to return the drone when the battery is running out. It has a running time of 120 minutes when fully charged and a diving depth of 60 meters. It comes with a remote controller, but you can still use your mobile device if you choose.

Key Features:

  • 4K camera
  • Obstacle avoidance function
  • No tether
  • In-built GPS

Specification:

  • Brand: ROBOSEA
  • Model: ROBOSEA Biki, APP Control Underwater Drone
  • Dimension: 10.71*4.33*7.13 inches
Pros
  • It is easy to maintain
  • It is made with durable ABS plastic
  • It is portable
  • It takes beautiful images
Cons
  • It has no live streaming
  • You can only use the controller underwater
  • The app only works when the drone is on the water surface

Buying Guide Questions

How much are underwater drones?

Underwater drones range in prices from $400 to $2000 and even more. The cost of an underwater drone depends on its features and intended use. Ensure you check the specifications of the drone before you pay top dollars for it.

What is an underwater drone?

An underwater drone is a tiny submarine that doesn’t have people in it. Most of these drones are operated through a remote controller. They are autonomous and move around using onboard sensors and computers. They are also known as Unmanned underwater vehicles; they can work underwater without any human occupant.

What is the fastest underwater vehicle?

The fastest underwater drone is known as the Trident. It is a remote-controlled underwater drone that is equipped with a camera. It is made by the underwater robotics startup OpenROV. If you are looking for maximum underwater speed then nothing will beat RC Submarines, these are the industry best picks available.

How deep can underwater drones go?

An underwater drone can go as deep as 10 meters to 4,500 meters; the diving depth of the underwater drone depends on the drone and its specifications. An RC Fishing Drone is an alternative option if you are looking to catch some fish on the loose.

Which drones are completely waterproof?

All underwater drones are waterproof, and this allows the user to explore the depth of the ocean without worry. The SwellPro Spry is the only aerial drone that is waterproof.

How do underwater drones communicate?

Underwater drones communicate by sending acoustic waves. The transmitter uses a hydrophone to send multichannel sound signals that travel as pressure waves, and when these waves reach the surface, they cause vibrations which the controller can pick up.

Related: the best of the best drones on the market when price is of no concern 🙂

Who invented the underwater drone?

The underwater drone was invented and patented by Sampriti Bhattacharyya. Hydroswarms is her startup company, and it is into making egg-shaped underwater drones.

Conclusion

Underwater drones have come to stay. They perform tasks ranging from rescuers to repair technicians. They help researchers explore the underwater world, which the National Ocean Service says 95 percent of it is still unexplored, and the underwater drones help you understand how it works. The world depends on drones now more than ever.

Purchasing the right underwater drone is important, no matter the intended use. The diving depth, battery and cruise speed are all important factors you need to keep in mind when purchasing an underwater drone.

This article will guide you on what type of underwater drone you should choose. It is advised not to compromise on quality to purchase the drone with the best features and have an incredible experience through your drone.