Being a newbie on drones, it seems to me that Betaflight and Ardupilot are similar programs / processes. Could anyone discuss the difference and perhaps the pros / cons of each of these?
Ardupilot vs betaflight
Caleb has somewhat addressed this already.
I think the biggest difference is ardupilot firmware is capable of autonomous missions with advanced Ground Control Station applications as taught in The Dojo. As in this course, companion computers can be installed which provide added capabilities for programming (eg, with Dronekit). More complex sensors can also be added such as LIDAR, sonar, gimbals with cameras, actuators for taco delivery, etc…
The advantage of betaflight (or iNAV) is that it can be loaded on cheaper and lighter flight controllers where programming is not a concern, eg, First Person View (FPV) racing. It has enhanced PID controls for acro flying. iNAV is a related forked version that can use GPS for waypoints navigation.
Purportedly arducopter can be loaded on one of these cheaper flight controllers, but so far I haven’t had such luck.
Hey! Adrupilot is the most popular drone software and it can control a lot of different types of vehicles. It has a all the features of an autopilot system. It has a lot of hardware support too same with software. It is used on a lot of commercial systems.
Betaflight is a cutting edge firmware, mostly used for quadcopters. And so far it is the best for FPV. And you can get the most speed out of your drone. This software is good for drone racing.
They are both good softwares but I would reccomend Ardupilot, because in my opinion it is easier and good for beginners. And if you are going for fast speeds Betaflight would be the good option.