I had my first encounter with a player who quickly built up drone launchers at choke points. I was, unhappily, surprised by how utterly effective they are at wiping out a huge army of frigates.
I did find air to be effective against them although he was able to defend against those with other units. I will try using artemis in the future to see how those do (although I'm not sure what a PAM is - is it the radar ability?).
May I ask, does the Apollo defend against them? The Apollo is said to be "anti-drone".
I'm sure a dreadnought is effective but they are a later game unit while the drone launcher can be pumped out right at the beginning.