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HUBSAN ZINO drone review(still good in 2023?)

Updated in 2023 by Paul Posea


The Hubsan Zino is definitely one of the top camera drones under $300 at the moment of writing this article.

There's only a few places where you can find it under $300 now, as its value seems to increase in time.

In this review of this drone I'll go over a lot of details, but some of the more notable ones are:

  • all the Hubsan Zino specs
  • how it compares to the competition (in visual tables)
  • Where it's cheapest to buy it from
  • Where to get the black version
  • how many changes the new update brought
  • how good is the camera and the flight

And many more...

This being said, let's dig into it and see why I actually consider this to be my favorite camera drone in this price range.

Not really that hard to tell why a 3 axis stabilized 4k GPS camera drone would fit well in that category.

I recommend you also check out my review of the newest Hubsan drone called Zino Mini Pro (it's under 250 grams)

My video review(and camera footage)

manual price where to buy

HUBSAN Zino Specs

In this section we're taking a look at the most frequently asked specs for this drone. Things like battery life, range, camera resolution and pretty much everything you need to make a quick impression.

After that we're taking a look at the camera a bit more in depth.

Hubsan Zino Battery Life test

hubsan zino battery life

The Hubsan Zino can stay in the air for a maximum of 23 minutes in perfect conditions.

However, considering that you probably should return the drone at 15% or 20% battery, it's about 19 minutes of actual use time, especially in windy conditions.

If you cancel the auto return to home on low battery, you can get more out of it, although I wouldn't recommend it for the health of the battery.

You can check out some hubsan drones with even longer battery life in my article with the top drones from Hubsan.

What's the range of the Zino?

The Hubsan Zino has a maximum range of 1km if there's not much interference.

I've noticed this number go down to about 600m in cities for example. But that's to be expected, as there's wifi interference. I have been actually able to take it as far as 1km as the specs say in more remote areas (with nothing between me and the drone).

What's the camera resolution?

Hubsan Zino has a camera resolution of 4k but can also shoot in 1080p.

The drone is one of the few (if not the only one) who can shoot 4k stabilized in this price range (I mean under $300) and it turns out it has some great footage, but more about that down bellow.

How much does it weight? (do you have to register it?)

The Zino weighs 700 grams and is obviously over the 250g limit of US registration.

It's to be expected, considering the hardware it has and the ability to carry the 3 axis camera and gimbal and a big enough battery. If you want to check regulation for most countries out there I suggest you check my map with every country drone law.

How good is the GPS accuracy

The biggest drawback of the Hubsan Zino was that it's GPS stability was a bit shitty in the past.

I even experienced toilet bowl effects.

However, Hubsan has changed the software a lot and with the new update everything in terms of stability has been fixed.

Now the drone doesn't do any more toilet bowling and it flies quite steady.

Does it return on Low Battery?

Yes, the drone does come back on low battery, 20% to be precise, but you can deactivate this function from the app if you so want.

You can also change the height the drone comes back at home.

Does it come with optical flow stabilization?

No, the Zino does not come with any obtical flow stabilization or obstacle avoidance sensors.

This is obviously made so it lowers the price as much as possible.

But it would have been nice to at least have on obstacle flow camera at the bottom so you can fly it inside or just fly it more stable when closer to the ground.

What's the maximum height it reaches?

This quadcopter can fly up to 500m in height, but you can limit this setting from the app too.

There's also beginner mode that will limit both height and distance, in case you want to practice without making any mistakes.

drone comparison table and graphic

Hubsan Zino Alternatives

In this section we're taking a look at the main competition for the Hubsan Zino and if it's actually the best drone for your money.

Considering the Hubsan zino can be actually found even under $300 if you know where to look, it doesn't really have much solid competition for this footage quality.

Bellow I presented a table comparison between the Zino vs the Fimi A3 vs Cfly Dream and VS X12 Aurora.

All of these come with their advantages and disadvantages, depending what you're looking for.

Versus the X12 Aurora

The Aurora is a very recent drone released on the market, and although it comes with a 1080p camera, it also comes with a better battery life, 3 axis gimbal and even bottom stability sensors.

The image quality is not as good, but it's not that bad either.

Versus the Xiaomi Fimi A3

Xiaomi has released some killer drones lately and the FImi A3 is quite special, having a really good build quality and a unique transmitter with an FPV Screen inside of it and a lot of functions.

Versus CFly Dream

This is a bit curious, because the CFly dream is one of the few drones with this filming capacity that is actually under 250 grams to make it legal in the States, besides the Mavic Mini, probably.


Hubsan Zino Camera

The camera is obviously the strong point of the Hubsan Zino, and it's quite amazing how they managed to actually get a really decent looking camera on a very well stabilized gimbal for this price.

How good is the footage and photos?

20190130 153945 0006

These photos were taken in 4k, click on them to see the full resolution image in a light box.

The photos are mainly exactly what you’ll get from the video image as well. And that’s because the photos are nothing else than basically still shots taken from video.

I am pretty happy with the quality, I must admit. There is some blurriness on the edges, but otherwise it’s top notch from what I can tell.

The dynamic range is allright, but as you can see, in the brighter part of the image above, the snow has lost almost all it’s details.

The gimbal itself is stabilized in 3 axis and I simply don’t have any complaints for it, it works as it should and is one of the most stable gimbals I have seen in a while.

hubsan zino photo

Camera Settings

The Zino doesn't come with many camera settings besides the standard ISO value and exposure.

The maximum resolution in which you can record is 4k 30fps, but you can also go for 1080p in 60fps if you think your computer won't handle the processing power.


Parts and Accessories

We need to also take a look at the package contents for the Hubsan Zino and se what accessories you can buy for it.

Best accessories for the Hubsan Zino

There are more and more accessories appearing online for the Zino, as it raises in popularity.

You can get most of the stuff you image, but haven't yet found any ND filters, which could have turned this drone a bit more into the pro range.

  1. Spare Batteries
  2. Carrying Case
  3. Tablet Extender
  4. Prop Guards
  5. Charger
hubsan zino spare parts accessories 2

Design and Unboxing

The Hubsan Zino is not a very sophisticated drone with tons of sensors and such, it focuses on:

  •  a solid build
  • powerful brushless motors for carrying the heavy battery
  • And the main focus: an aerial camera that's well stabilized

The plastic it's made of is quite standard, a bit inferior to what you can see in Xiaomi Drones or DJI, but good enough nonetheless.

It also comes with foldable props, which make it even more compact and easy to carry.

It even has a nice, well made gimbal cover (that's easy to put on).

  1. Battery(or multiple, depending on the package)
  2. Charger
  3. Screwdriver
  4. Remote
  5. Spare Props
  6. Drone
  7. Manual
  8. 3 Types of connecting cables
  9. Gimbal Protector

Transmitter and Mobil App


The transmitter feels a little bit cheaper than higher end drones, the sticks felt a bit like cheaper toy drones from china, but overall the controller does its job well.

Usually transmitter quality is an area where I can compromise in, if all the functions are properly working.

The drone can be set up to fly in standard or sport mode, which will make it considerably faster, but won’t allow for smoother cinematic movements.

There’s a wheel to control the camera gimbal up and down and a few useful buttons like automatic launch and return to home.

  • Scroll wheel to move gimbal
  • RTH button
  • Automatic takeoff
  • Switch Between GPS Mode and Altitude MOde
  • Phone Holder at the bottom
  • Battery indicators

What phones work with the Hubsan Zino?

The Hubsan Zino doesn't require you to use an 802.11ac phone, as it connects though a small cable to the transmitter, which takes that function instead.

So any smartphone works with the Zino, considering you also get 3 different types of cable for Iphones and Android too.

You can also use the phone only, without any cables and connect it to the drone directly, but that does require you to have an 802.11ac wifi phone and the FPV distance will also be limited to 300m or so.

The controller itself has a 5g repeater so it can extend the range of action up to 1km, which is not bad at all.

What phones work with the Hubsan Zino?


The Zino app works as it should, doesn't come with the most sophisticated settings in the world, but you will get to setup most things and intermediate user needs and even more.

You can obviously see things like:

  • height
  • speed
  • number of satelites connected (btw, you need to have more than 7 if you want positioning to work)
  • micro SD storage space indicator

Best Cheap Mini Drones you can buy right now

How fast can it fly?

The Zino has 2 main flight modes: GPS and atti mode.
In GPS mode it flies slower, but in Atti mode you can unlock it's full 60km/h sport mode.

Otherwise, 40km/h should be enough for most people. The maximum speed

What flight modes does it come with?

zino flight modes

Waypoint mode

A standard waypoint mode, but you can actually change the direction of the drone and camera angle while flying, which is nice.

Orbit Mode

A standard flight mode, no issues here, it simply does what it says. It can get clumsy sometimes in stronger winds.

Following Mode
In following mode you can either follow the GPS signal of your phone, or you can follow the subject on the screen. This mode works very well, and manages to track subjects even if you run under the drone.

Line Fly mode
This is my favorite, as you can setup a certain trajectory for the drone to fly at and then play with it, to get a more complex sideways shot for example.

line fly mode hubsan zin
image 4

Hubsan Zino Price, Manual and Instructions

Package contents of the Mini 2 haven't change much from the original, besides a few key points.

But even so it requires a more in depth look.

How to fly it

The process is a bit more complex the first time you do it, but easier from then on.

  1. Start the drone and transmitter
  2. Connect to the app and  the phone to the transmitter
  3. Bind aircraft to the device by the first prompt you get in your app screen
  4. Do a GPS accuracy test as prompted
  5. Calibrate the Compass from the menu settings (at least the first time)
  6. Start the Motors

Who Should buy it (is it worth the price)?

This drone is MUCH MORE than worth its price, it almost competes with DJI drones when it comes to image quality, and that's on a whole different price level.

I think this quadcopter can fit in a wide range of uses and some people that could benefit from having it are:

  • If you're taking photos/videos at weddings(this is quite a high adition to your gadgets, if you can't invest $1000 in a drone)
  • If you're a hobbyist and want a very reliable drone to play around with and experiment filming
  • As a next step from a beginner drone
  • For Travel
  • Real Estate video
  • Home inspection

Where to buy it from?

Here's a few places you can safely buy this drone from, I bought mine from Banggood, but there's other reliable chinese sites out there and also Amazon if you want it faster.

Keep in mind that wherever you buy it from, it's still going to be built in china anyway, so It's a matter of price and shipping.

And the Chinese websites usually have free shipping.

Xiaomi fimi black version - Where to get it? (Hubsan Zino VS Zino Pro)

There's also a newer released black version for the Hubsan Zino that looks cooler in my opinion and it also comes with an included case.

Although some people call it the Pro version, it's no real big difference between the standard Zino and Zino pro, besides the color.

Another advantage is that the black version comes with all the new software updates, and trust me it can be a bit of a hassle to make the new sotfware updates to the older drone.

But by now probably even the white version has the latest updates preinstalled.

hubsan zino pro drone discount
Hi, I'm Paul.
A big drone enthusiast, reviewing, comparing and writing about drones since 2015. I'm all about helping people enjoy and even monetize their hobby.

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paul posea
Paul Posea
Hi, I'm a long-time drone reviewer and I hope my articles and comparisons on this site as well as Dronesgator's youtube channel are of as much help as possible.
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