Ruko F11 Pro drone review: An excellent drone for first-timers

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This is my review of the Ruko F11 Pro drone. I’ve been flying drones for a while and love comparing them, even if it’s been a few years since they were released. This drone first came out in 2019 and has held up pretty well. It’s a good drone with a 4K camera and user-friendly smart features. These functions make it an excellent drone for beginners and a good choice for the price. Professionals may want to look elsewhere.

The Ruko F11 Pro is a solid general-purpose drone. It’s meant to fly around and take photos with few frills but plenty of functionality. It has a 4K camera and many “smart features” that make flying it safe and fun. The biggest thing it has going for it is an advertised 1 hour of flight time, but there’s a catch. It is not a trick drone, just a solid beginner drone.

This review will detail every feature of the Ruko F11 Pro: camera, smart features, weight, and so on. We’ll look at what this drone has inside, and then see how those features stack up to other drones around $300. When I say this drone can compete with a DJI, I mean it.

Best for Range
Ruko F11 Pro

If you'd like to use your drone to record lofty mountain tops or vast expanses, you'll want to consider investing in the Ruko F11 Pro.

This compact drone has a 4,000ft (about 1.2km) control range and can transmit live video up to 1,640ft (about 500m) to connected smartphones.

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Product Overview

The Ruko F11 Pro is chock full of features that make me go, “only 300 bucks? Really?” These include a decent camera, smart features like “follow me,” “return-to-home,” wayfinding and hand gestures, and more! It’s also got a 4K camera and amazing battery life. I can’t believe they stuffed all of this in a drone in 2019 and priced it how they did. But how does it stack up against the drones of today?

The only problem is that there are better drones on the market. The F11 Pro’s biggest downside is its weight; I’ll get into that more later, but other drones do most, if not all, of what it does while being lighter. And weight may be its biggest double-edged sword; while its hefty 1.14 lb./517.1-gram bulk means you have to register it, it might have granted it coveted level 6 wind resistance in exchange.

There are plenty of good things about the Ruko F11 Pro. Its camera is great for the price, it has many good smart features, and it’s very compact. Its battery life exceeds that of similar models from Holy Stone and DJI; otherwise, there’s nothing wrong with being in third place. But if you want to hear more, I’ll break it down feature-by-feature so that you can see these specs for yourself.

Product Features

So, what are the details of these features I keep talking about? Check out what the Ruko F11 Pro has to offer!

Camera Quality

The F11 Pro comes with a 4K Ultra HD camera. That means that, when shown on a screen, you won’t see nearly as many pixels as you think. This translates into a little over 8 MP if you crunch the numbers. Professional photo drones can have numbers like 48MP and 4K video, so it doesn’t quite stack up. It’s a little worse than the photo quality on some iPhones.

But a few reviews have mentioned a “fish-eye” effect from the drone’s camera. That’s a fair criticism. The camera isn’t quite professional-grade because of this, but still way better than some budget models.

ruko f11 pro drone review

Range (Signal Transmission)

After crunching the numbers, the F11 Pro’s 4000-foot (1.22 km) range is very impressive. I’ll get more into comparisons later, but this range places it above the Holy Stone and beneath the DJI. Not bad at all!

Flight Time and Battery

The most impressive trait of the Ruko F11 Pro drone is its battery life. Drones are notoriously inefficient; some professional drones don’t last past 20 minutes. It’s also a pain to have a breathtaking view and no drone to photograph it!  Every minute of battery life matters, so my interest was piqued when I heard this drone could fly for an hour.

I’ve seen a drone fly for 30 minutes, maybe 45 minutes if they’re lucky. But I’ve never seen a drone fly for a solid hour. I was intrigued by this at first, then went, “oh, okay. That makes sense!” once I figured out how the F11 Pro managed that flight time. Even then, considering its weight, it’s impressive.

The Ruko F11 Pro can only fly for an hour by having two batteries. You’ll have to stop and swap batteries within 30 minutes, which is still better than being out of luck in the middle of nowhere. The flight time isn’t as good as it sounds, but 30 minutes is still a solid amount of airtime. Be sure to get the Pro version with two batteries so you won’t need to stop and charge! (Caveat to Australian pilots: if you want extra batteries or repairs, I’ve been told that Ruko isn’t generous to your area.)

If you only get the Ruko F11 Pro with 1 battery, it has flight time on par with the DJI Mini 3. But if you get it with 2, your F11 Pro will fly for, effectively, twice as long as my favorite mini-drone. If someone asks you why you didn’t get a DJI drone instead, “flight time” is an honest, respectable answer.

Bonus point: the F11 Pro’s battery has a handy button that you can press to see how charged the battery is. Nice!

Size, Weight, and Portability

Let’s get one thing off the table: this drone is oddly heavy. It weighs 1.14 lb. or 517.1 grams. It’s about as long as a stapler but weighs twice as much! This can be an unpleasant surprise for beginner pilots. It should also be a factor if you intend to travel with your drone.

The F11 Pro’s weight also means you will need to register your drone, which you can do here. This is necessary for any drone over 0.55 lb./250 grams. It takes 5 minutes to fill out the form. By the way, props to Ruko for saying that you need to register their drone in the Amazon listing; not everybody does that.

But there’s a silver (or aluminum) lining to the cloud: the Ruko F11 Pro boasts level 6 wind resistance. I’ve reviewed hundreds of professional drones, and most of them only have level 5! This may be due to the Ruko F11 Pro being as heavy as it is. Sometimes it’s good to be heavy (and how the developers managed this without hurting the battery life is beyond me).

Weight aside, the F11 Pro is small and very portable. Its propellors fold in well. Even if it’s not lightweight, it’s easy enough to pack—just keep in mind that it’s heavier than it looks.

Smart Features

“Smart features” are any features your drone’s AI is programmed to do. They usually need some user input, which can be as simple as “follow me” or as complex as “fly back home when you’re low on batteries.” But you might be surprised at what you can teach the F11 Pro to do!

Return-to-Home (RTH)

Return-to-home is one of the best features a drone can have! When your drone is running low on batteries, or otherwise in danger, you can tell it to return to a specific point. You don’t have to do anything aside from telling it where to go.

Find the Lost Drone

Losing a thousand-dollar drone is every pilot’s nightmare. Luckily, not only does this drone not cost $1000, but it comes with a feature to help you find your lost drone.

GPS Assistance

GPS features allow your drone to stabilize itself in midair. It also helps your drone find its way home and perform other aerial feats that require it to either hover or navigate. This is not affected by a given area having poor cell phone reception!

Extra Features and Accessories

Beginner Mode

Between its price and a decent variety of features, the Ruko F11 Pro is a fine beginner drone. But what if the company made it even easier for beginners to use? They did exactly that with the Beginner Mode setting on this drone.

A note, though, especially for beginners: do not skip any steps when setting up this drone. Some reviews have said that things go wrong if you skip steps, such as the drone flying off on its own. Take your time to do all the steps right.

Ruko Pro App

To fly this drone, you must download the Ruko Pro app. This app is available on both iOS and Android. It’s mandatory, but don’t be afraid to mess around and unlock a few new tricks for your drone!

Customer Service

There seem to be mixed reactions to Ruko’s customer service. If you’re in the US, it’s great. But if you’re in Australia, the customer service might not be as good, as per several Amazon reviews.

Extra Memory Cards

Extra memory cards are not included with the F11 Pro. You will need to buy one if you want your drone to have more memory. I recommend getting a 32GB MicroSD, as that’s the highest you can get without needing to modify this drone.

Price

The Ruko F11 Pro is only 300 bucks on Amazon. Honestly? The price isn’t bad. That might seem like a lot, but it’s not in the grander scheme! It’s been described as a professional-grade drone at an entry-level price. I’m not sure I’d go that far, but it’s really good for an entry-level drone! If the DJI Mini SE didn’t exist, the Ruko F11 Pro would turn more heads.

Product Alternatives

Maybe you saw something up there and wondered if you can find a given quality (say, a better camera) in similar drones. This is the section for you!

Best for Reliability
DJI Mini SE

DJI drones are some of the highest-quality consumer-friendly drones available, and in my opinion, the DJI Mini SE is the best choice for those looking to spend less on a top-notch drone.

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Did you see how heavy the Ruko F11 Pro was but wanted something lighter? DJI is one of the most respected names in the hobby, and the DJI Mini SE might be the right drone for you. Its transmission distance is also just over 2 miles, meaning that it beats out most other drones on this review in range. The camera is not quite as good at 2.7K, but that’s still good enough to push the limits of what a drone under 250 grams/0.55 lb. can do. It has many of the same smart features as the F11 Pro in a smaller, lighter package. I love DJIs and you probably will, too!

EXO X7 Ranger Plus

From the drone's high-end camera to the obstacle avoidance and GPS systems, the EXO X7 Ranger Plus has everything you need in a drone. This drone also has a flight time of up to 25 minutes to let you enjoy long flights without interruption.

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At first blush, the EXO X7 Ranger Plus looks similar to the Ruko F11 Pro: 4K camera, smart features, and roughly an hour of flight time. I don’t like that you have to buy obstacle avoidance, but it’s available. The half-mile range is a little worse than the F11 Pro’s. But the negatives are heavy—literally. It’s heavier than the F11 Pro (3 pounds VS around 1 pound) and the camera is not as good. Finally, I balked at the F11 Pro’s multiple batteries; the EXO only extends that flight time slightly if you’re willing to buy 3 batteries for an extra hundred dollars.

Best Budget Option
Holy Stone HS720G
$299.99

The words “wholesome beginner drone” sum up the HS720G nicely. Its 4K camera with a 2-axis gimbal allows for some excellent aerial footage.

If you want to have fun flying your drone, Holy Stones are acrobatic drones, so don’t be afraid to play around in the sky!

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12/07/2022 12:53 am GMT

Holy Stone is another big name in the drone hobby. The Holy Stone HS720G has similar capabilities to the Ruko F11 Pro: a 4K camera, foldable propellors, and smart features like “follow me” and “return-to-home.” It has a significant 999-meter (roughly 0.61-mile) range. It also weighs significantly less (377 grams VS 517.1 grams). And if you’re a stickler for looks, Holy Stones generally look cool.

Conclusion

Here’s my verdict on the Ruko F11 Pro: it’s respectable. During this Ruko F11 Pro drone review, I realized it had excellent features that put it up there with big names like Holy Stone and DJI. Those two batteries make it well worth the money!

If a relatively unknown brand can do that in a competitive market, it’s high praise. My only complaint is that it’s not a DJI or Holy Stone. If the main reason to not get the F11 Pro is “why not get a DJI instead?” there’s no shame in buying it as your first drone.

Best for Range
Ruko F11 Pro

If you'd like to use your drone to record lofty mountain tops or vast expanses, you'll want to consider investing in the Ruko F11 Pro.

This compact drone has a 4,000ft (about 1.2km) control range and can transmit live video up to 1,640ft (about 500m) to connected smartphones.

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
Photo of author

AUTHOR

Keith Moreau is the founder and chief editor at Flyver.co. His aim? Simple. Cut through the jargon and help you fly better and safer with your drone.

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