For this Eachine E58 Pro review, I put the 2020 successor to the original E58 (from 2018) through its paces. While E58 Pro looks virtually identical to its predecessor, it boasts a number of improvements, the biggest one being an upgrade to 1080P camera from the original's 720P.
Coming in at the lower end of the price-range for reputable, camera-equipped toy drones, it's a contender for our best cheap drone guide (those who want something more feature-rich should explore our general best drone roundup). But can this bargain toy drone give more expensive models a run for their money? Read on for our full Eachine E58 Pro review.
Before we kick off our review, we'd better point out that before flying any camera-equipped drone outdoors in the UK, you'll first need to obtain an Operator ID. Head to our UK drone regulations explainer (or US drone rules guide) or the the CAA website for more info.
Eachine E58 Pro drone review: design and setup
The Eachine E58 Pro has clearly been designed to resemble a mini version of the DJI Mavic Pro. While its plastic body feels lightweight and not particularly durable, during testing it has proved to be more robust that it first appears. Foldable arms extend to give it a size of L255 x W220 x D50mm, which is little larger than most drones in its class.
The camera position on the E58 can be adjusted vertically by hand before launch, allowing you to choose to shoot what's in front or below the drone. Twin LED lights at the front of the aircraft are a big help in orienting the drone, particularly at a distance, while at the back is a rear red LED strip that flashes to warn of a low battery.
While the original E58 allowed you to record content onto a Micro-SD card inserted into the drone's body as well as on a connected phone, the memory card port has been removed on the Pro model. This leaves users with a single option of storing video and images on a connected mobile device via the Eachine app – which to be fair, is typical of most other toy drones in its class.
Eachine E58 Pro drone review: maneuverability and flight modes
The E58 Pro has an ‘altitude hold' system which helps stay fairly level in windless conditions. However, the drone still requires small adjustments while hovering as it has a tendency to drift from its position – even when flying indoors. Rather than using the control sticks to make corrections, directional ‘trim' buttons on the controller allow you to make micro-adjustments to help keep the drone in place.
When moving the drone horizontally in any direction, the E58 Pro moves with impressive speed – even in the slowest of its three propeller settings. The flipside of such rapid movement is a lot of momentum, which makes it relatively slow to respond to changes in direction and harder to control as a result.
Using a mobile device in conjunction with the E58 Pro's controller, you're able to plot a short path for the drone to follow by drawing it on your touchscreen. The E58 Pro also has ‘headless' mode which makes the drone respond in the direction of the inputs from the controller – regardless of its orientation.
You get about seven minutes of flight time per battery, which doesn't fare that favourably against leading toy drones that give ten minutes or more. Similarly, recharges take the best part of an hour, compared to 15 minutes or so better equipped models.
Like all drones in its class, the E58 Pro is extremely susceptible to wind of any kind and is virtually impossible to control in even the lightest breezes. Our original test model ended up being carried 200 metres or so by a sudden gust and ended up landing in a square quarter mile of shoulder-deep brambles, never to be retrieved.
Eachine E58 Pro drone review: stills and video
The E58 Pro's 1080P camera is one of its biggest assets, especially when compared to the 720P cameras found on certain more expensive models such as leading toy drone, the Ryze Tello.
While video footage still looks fairly grainy when viewing on a screen bigger than a phone, image depth and colour saturation is pretty good for a drone of this type. Just like most rival drones, the exception being the Ryze Tello, there's no camera stabilisation of any kind. As a result, every tiny movement of the drone is recorded in its footage and the model we tested only had a frame rate of 20FPS which made everything look even more jerky.
Eachine E58 Pro drone review: specs
- Video: 1080P
- Stills: 2MP
- Video stabilisation: No
- App support: Yes
- VR compatible: Yes
- Flight time: 7 minutes
- Flight distance: 80m
- Weight: 96g (inc. battery)
- Number of batteries: 2
- Controller included: Yes
Eachine E58 Pro drone review: verdict
With a budget-friendly RRP, a 1080P camera, a controller and a number of other handy features, the Eachnie E58 Pro drone represents decent value for money. Being one of the harder to control toy drones around, we wouldn't recommend it for younger pilots, but this rapid flier is a lot of fun to razz around in the air nonetheless. It's let down by a relatively short battery life and a jerky camera though.