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May 12, 2020
Product Reviews

5 things you should know before buying FamilyTreeDNA (FTDNA)

A FamilyTree DNA (FTDNA) review by experts. Curated information including reports covered, reviews, cost and about free DNA data upload.
Tomohiro Takano

At Genomelink, we want to make sure that you get the most out of your genetic testing company. Use the review below to understand more about FamilyTreeDNA (FTDNA). Our reviews are highly standardized, making it easy for you to compare a number of companies at once! Plus, we will show you a number of websites that you can use with the raw DNA data file you download from FamilyTreeDNA, which can give you more insights into how your genes may be affecting your health, lifestyle, and other aspects of your life.

1. About FamilyTreeDNA (FTDNA)
2. Test Results and Sample Reports
3. Reviews
4. Cost
5. Upload Raw DNA Data from FamilyTreeDNA

1. About FamilyTreeDNA (FTDNA)

Quick Facts:
Company Name: FamilyTreeDNA (Owned by Gene by Gene, Ltd.)
Foundation Year: 2000
Location: Houston, Texas
Monthly Visits: 2 Million+
Number of Databases: 1 Million+

FamilyTreeDNA (FTDNA) was created in 2000, and they were one of the first companies to offer a direct-to-consumer DNA test kit. In 2006, the company was able to invest in a state-of-the-art facility in Houston, Texas. Here, they conduct all of their genetic testing in-house. Unlike some other companies, FamilyTreeDNA provides standard autosomal testing as well as mtDNA tests and Y-chromosome tests. These tests can give you a deeper look at both your maternal and paternal family history, respectively. While the company does do rigorous DNA tests, the name is a bit misleading because its platform offers no capabilities for creating a family tree. The company also lacks a family finder option.

2. Test Results and Sample Reports

Here you can find what to expect from a typical FamilyTreeDNA report.

FamilyTreeDNA Report Overview

  • Get a breakdown of ethnicities that contributed to your genes
  • Explore your family’s migration patterns
  • Get your mitochondrial DNA analyzed, giving you specifics about your maternal side
  • Several options for Y-DNA testing, allowing you to get insights on your paternal side

Depending on which services you select, you will get a variety of reports back from FamilyTreeDNA. The main reports are the myOrigins report and the ancientOrigins report, both of which report on different aspects of your autosomal genes. With these reports you can get a breakdown of your ethnicity, as well as learn about possible migration routes your family may have taken and whether or not you contain any genes from Neanderthals. This DNA testing company also offers mtDNA and Y-DNA testing. The maternal ancestry report, based on your mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), will trace your maternal line back to the dawn of civilization. The company also offers a wide variety of paternal ancestry testing options, which explore the genes on a man’s Y-chromosome. Below is an example of the report you will receive!

Check out the page below for more information on what a report from FamilyTreeDNA is likely to contain!
FamilyTreeDNA Sample Report

3. Reviews

The company has a number of reviews found across the internet. Check out our summary below:

  • 2 of 5 stars on Trustpilot, with over 20 reviews
  • 3.2 of 5 stars on Amazon, with over 150 reviews
  • 2.5 of 5 stars on Yelp, with over 50 reviews
  • See what the Reddit community is saying about FamilyTreeDNA.

FamilyTreeDNA has also worked with law enforcement to help solve cold cases and violent crimes. Using DNA from the crime scene, the company can help law enforcement find matches, and bring criminals to justice.

4. Cost (Updated on May 2020)

The standard autosomal DNA test for ancestry, the Family Ancestry Test, is typically $79. The company also offers 1 mtDNA test and 3 different Y-chromosome tests. For the mtDNA test, the company will fully sequence your mitochondrial DNA for only $159. The Y-DNA tests have levels varying from $119 - $449, the top level allowing you a full sequence of your Y-chromosome as well as a report detailing many aspects of your paternal ancestry, such as DNA matches to surnames related to you.

5. Upload Raw DNA Data from MyHeritageDNA

While FamilyTreeDNA is not in the business of testing for health or lifestyle traits, they do allow you to download your sequenced DNA. While they only test for genetic genealogy, they also inadvertently collect extra information within your genetic data. The raw DNA data file can be uploaded to any of the following companies, allowing you access to a much greater wealth of information. Some of the following companies allow you to upload raw DNA data for free and can offer a wide variety of insights that FamilyTreeDNA does not cover in their reports. Check them out!

Know "More" About Your DNA Data

1. Genomelink — FREE
2. Promethease (genetic health risk)

Ancestry Tests

3. MyHeritage DNA — FREE
4. LivingDNA — FREE
5. GEDmatch — FREE

To find out more DNA upload sites, check out our article "The Best DNA Upload Sites"

*Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

Got 23andMe, AncestryDNA, or MyHeritage results back? Upload your raw DNA data to access 25+ free traits and 7 Ancient Ancestry reports
Tomohiro Takano
Tomohiro Takano
Co-Founder and CEO