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Holy Stone HS160 Review 2020

Holy Stone HS160 Review 2020

The Holy Stone HS160 drone is a small folding quadrocopter that could be worthwhile for many beginners and newcomers. The HS160 attracts with automatic height adjustment, 720p HD camera and low price. In the test I go with the drone to the fresh air, look how well the Holy Stone HS160 flies, which differences there are to comparable copters and whether a purchase recommendation can be pronounced.

Scope of delivery: This is in the package of the HS160

Scope of delivery of the Holy Stone HS160 drone
HS160 Quadrocopter
Remote control with smartphone holder
2 batteries (3.7V 500mAh rechargeable batteries)
Charging technology (USB cable)
Removable protective frame
Cloth cover for transporting the drone
4 Spare propellers
Notebook with pen
Fireproof bag for batteries

For a mini-drone under 100 Euro you get a lot more with the Holy Stone HS160! The second battery is top and saves the typically recommended purchase of a spare battery. Whether you really need the notebook is a different matter, especially as you don’t have to keep a flight log for drones under 250 grams take-off weight.

A nice thing is the fireproof Safetybag for the batteries of the drone. A bit exaggerated but hey, you don’t look a gift horse in the mouth!

Processing of the HS160 drone
Battery compartment of Holy Stone HS160
Battery compartment of Holy Stone HS160

Remote control for the Holy Stone HS160
Remote control with smartphone holder

If one takes the Quadrocopter out of the velvet-like carrying bag, one notices how light the aircraft is: 65 grams are shown on the kitchen scale, 20 grams are added by the battery. If one folds out the laterally arranged axes, they engage noticeably and with a loud click. I therefore don’t expect an axle fiasco, as I experienced in the test of the miserable DroneX Pro, in the test flights.

Overall, the drone makes a very good impression, although of course the plastic look and feel predominate.

Range: 50 meters

Flight duration: 8 minutes

Altitude: Yes

FPV: Yes

Video: 1280p x 720p (HD) at 25 fps

Photos: 2 Megapixel

First test flight makes you want more

It stands well in the air, is manoeuvrable and well built for small excursions.

After I have charged both batteries and downloaded the app HS_D2, I go out to test it. Like almost every time, the copter has to be trimmed a bit. A slight drift to the side and back is annoying, but this is due to the lack of really ground level starting points.
The trimming of the Holy Stone HS160 is quite simple, the right control pad on the remote control regulates it in no time.

The first take-offs and landings are done by hand, then I try the 1-click automatic. For this there is the left button on the left cross, which performs takeoff and landing automatically. The start works great this way, the landing could be a bit softer.

After about 8 minutes the tank is empty. It’s a good thing there’s another battery!

After 8:30 minutes the first battery is empty, which is conveniently displayed in the app. Gone are the days when you had to see the LEDs flashing in flight (which was almost impossible to see) before the Copter fell out of the sky. At 30% battery power I land the Copter and insert the second battery.

Flips work well, the Copter flies at the lowest level (top left) good-natured, at the highest quite jagged.

Second round: flight time, range and app in focus

With the second battery I dare to take the range test, which is always associated with a certain risk. Holy Stone says that the HS160 has a range of about 30 meters, which can easily be reached by the drone. The WIFI connection – and thus the FPV image – is still stable at 40-50 meters, the radio connection between the RC radio and the copter is about 50-60 meters, I estimate. In comparison with other beginner drones this is average, but at least better than with the DJI Tello.

In the second test flight I also use the app a bit more intensively, triggering photos and videos via touch command (all top), although the FPV image jolts a bit badly. As with many mini drones with FPV live image, the frame rate is very low, which is why a slide show effect predominates especially with live video.
But all in all no drama, after all you don’t fly a DJI Mavic 2 Pro, but a copter that doesn’t cost 80 Euro!

Holy Stone HS160 Camera: The quality of the pictures is that good
Holy Stone HS160 camera under test
The 1280x720p camera can be tilted vertically before the start.

The Holy Stone HS160 has a small 1280x720p (HD) camera in the front. This can be aligned vertically before take-off, during flight this is no longer possible. There is no stabilisation, for example by a gimbal or electronic image stabilisation, which is why videos in particular can shake due to drone vibrations.

The photos I take in the test, however, look quite good. Of course you can’t expect the world for the low price, but I’ve seen worse aerial photos with other drones.

Conclusion and evaluation of the Holy Stone HS160 drone

Altogether I like the Holy Stone HS160 Quadrocopter quite well. The workmanship is good, the axles can be folded in and out very well and snap in safely. Both flight time and range can keep up with other comparable copters, the app works problem-free and trouble-free.

So if you are a beginner looking for a small foldable camera drone at a fair price, you should definitely have a look at the Holy Stone HS160. For a good 80 Euro* the Copter is a good introduction – not least because of the free second battery included!

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