DJI Mavic Mini Short Review
The DJI Mavic Mini is a fantastic drone that comes with most of the innovative features that have made DJI the leader in consumer drone technology. It has a2.7K camera that is stabilised by an advanced 3-axis gimbal which will give you crystal clear images and videos. It has an industry-leading flight time of 30 minutes and a completely new app has been developed with beginners in mind and which gives you access to even more features like quick shots, Sky Pixel and a video/image editing suite. It is one of the best drones in its price range and is suitable for casual fliers and professional photographers.
- 2.7K Camera
- 12MP Sensor
- 3 Axis Motorised Gimbal
- Weighs Less Than 250g
- Dual GPS
- Automatic Return Home
- 30 Minute Flight Time
So, DJI have finally released the Mavic Mini, the cheapest drone in the Mavic series that costs under $400, it’s still a little expensive if you ask me but way cheaper than their other models. In this review of the DJI Mavic Mini you will find out just why there is so much hype around this drone and why it’s the perfect drone for both beginners and experienced drone pilots.
It was DJI that made the foldable drone design very popular through their Mavic series, but they are expensive drones and not everyone has the budget for one.
They did rectify this through the Tello drone, which is a very good beginner-friendly drone but it didn’t come with many of DJI’s signature features that have made their drones so popular. However, with the Mavic Mini, that all changes, this is a fantastic looking drone, that is lightweight and comes with most of DJI’s innovative features and it is easy to fly. This is an updated review of the Mavic Mini which has probably been the most popular high-end consumer drone in 2020.
DJI Mavic Mini Review
The DJI Mavic Mini is a premium drone and it comes in a premium package; you get all the necessary accessories and a really cool looking grey hard-shell carry case.
The DJI Mavic Mini is the perfect drone to travel around with, it measures 245*290*55 cm unfolded (with the propellers) and weighs just 249g.
They are making a big deal with the weight of this drone and a for a very good reason ( they even have it printed on the side of the drone).
Many countries now require you to register a drone if it weighs over 250g, this includes the USA, Canada and the UK. In the UK you will even have to take an online test, obtain a flyer ID and a unique code to identify your drone, a bit of a hassle if all you want to do is enjoy flying your drone.
DJI took notice of these regulations and made sure that they engineered the DJI Mavic Mini to weigh less than 250g so it wouldn’t be illegal for people to fly this drone without registering it.
It’s a well-designed drone, its constructed from high-quality plastic, which is why it’s so light, the other Mavic drones are made from magnesium alloy and are twice as heavy. There was some concern that it would not hold up well in slightly windy conditions, however, as can be seen from the video below, it has a very stable flight.
It so tiny, the body of the drone sits perfectly in the palm of your hands, the rotor arms are easy to expand, and the front pair have some extended landing legs that will protect the camera when you land the drone.
The drone is powered by a 7.2V 2400 mAh lithium-ion battery that gives it a flight time of around 30 minutes, which is similar to the Mavic Pro and Phantom 4 Pro, drones that are way more powerful than the DJI Mavic Mini.
30 minutes is the maximum flight time for most consumer drones and the fact that the DJI Mavic Mini can fly for this long is a testament to the ingenuity of DJI’s engineers. However, even 30 minutes is sometimes not enough time to fully enjoy flying this drone, luckily DJI does offer a package that comes with 3 extra batteries which I highly recommend.
The remote controller is similar to that of the other Mavic drones, DJI produced a brilliant controller with the Mavic Pro and they have kept the same design elements with all the drones in the Mavic series.
It’s a simple controller with a minimalistic design and feels comfortable in your hands. One of the useful features of this controller is that you can take off the control sticks which makes it far easier to pack away.
It has a return to home button on the front and two buttons on the top for taking pictures and videos. There is also a dial that will let you adjust the angle of the 3-axis gimbal. It has 4 small LED lights in the middle that will indicate the battery level of the controller, when the controller is syncing up with the drone and when the controller is powering up.
There are two folding handles at the bottom that will hold your smartphone for FPV purposes, and it can hold a smartphone that has a maximum length of 16 cm. The transmission range is 2km unobstructed, although in most countries you will have to keep the drone within your line of sight, so having a long transmission range doesn’t matter.
DJI Mavic Mini Camera
Now, we get to the main feature of the DJI Mavic Mini which is its 2.7K HD camera that is supported by a 3-axis gimbal.
I believe one of the main reason’s drones have become so popular over the past few years is because they allow you to see and observe the world from above which is always an exhilarating experience. One of my favourite parts of flying in an aeroplane is when you initially take-off and see the world around you from the air and it’s an exciting experience. With HD camera drones like the DJI Mavic Mini, you can experience this through the FPV feature.
The video quality of the drone is of exceptional quality, it can record in 2.7k @30 fps or in FHD @60fps, you will need an SD card to store these recording in because the video streaming quality is 720p @30fps which is still pretty good but not truly HD.
The camera has a 1.2/3” CMOS sensor that can take HD images in 12 MP and lens has 83° FOV, which isn’t as wide as the other Mavic drones, but still can capture a lot of details in one shot.
With DJI’s dedicated new app, you can do a lot of cool stuff with this camera and impress both family, friends and colleagues at work.
DJI Mavic Mini Fly App
DJI have developed a completely new app for the Mavic Mini called the Fly app, its compatible with smartphones or tablets that have iOS v10.0 or Android v6.0. It’s a much lighter app than the DJI GO 4 and is very intuitive, DJI have developed this app with beginners in mind and so it is easy to navigate and use.
One of the useful features of this app is that it has a lot tutorials on flying drones that will help beginners, there are tutorials on how to fly your drone, updating firmware, quick guides on taking good aerial photography and safety tips for first-time drone pilots.
You can edit and share your videos straight from within the app and it has very nice templates that you can use to spice up your video clips to make them look professional.
You can adjust the camera settings and control the 3 axis gimbal to get the angle that you want to shoot from. The maximum height and distance the drone can fly to can also be adjusted via the app as can the height from which the drone can return home.
Adjusting the return to home height is especially useful as you can make sure that you set it to a height that will make sure that it doesn’t come up against any kind of obstacle. This is a good feature as one of the missing features from this drone is obstacle avoidance technology, which is a bit of a let-down but considering the price and size of the drone, it is understandable why this feature is not included.
The app also displays flight data like distance, height, battery level, number of satellites, flight modes and a small map that shows where the drone is.
The app gives you quick access to DJI’s Sky Pixel platform where you can upload your videos and images and share it with other DJI drone pilots.
Overall reviews have been very positive for the DJI Fly app and as it is DJI, expect constant updates and added features in the future.
The DJI Mavic Mini has three flight modes, they are;
Position (P) – This is the default mode and the best for beginners
Sports (S) – Unlocks advanced features of the drone and also fly’s at its maximum speed
Cinema (C) – To take smooth slow video footage that looks professionally made.
DJI Mavic Quick Shots
Within the DJI Fly app you can choose from a choice of 4 flight manoeuvres that will let you take quick images or videos without having to control the drone.
These quick shots are;
Dronie – The drone will lock on to its subject and fly up and backwards whilst always tracking its subject.
Helix – Similar to dronie but this time the drone will spiral up and around the subject.
Circle – The Mavic Mini will orbit the person or object at a height and distance of your choosing.
Rocket – This is a really cool manoeuvre; the drone will fly up vertically with its camera facing down on to the subject you have chosen to follow.
For each flight manoeuvre, you can set a height limit of 40,60,80,100 or 120 feet.
You get all the necessary accessories to start flying straight away, currently there are two packages you can purchase.
The Mavic Mini – Which comes with the necessary accessories to get you flying straight away.
Mavic Mini Fly More Combo – This packages comes with extra accessories, you get three intelligent batteries, a two-charging hub that can charge all three batteries at once, a really cool carry case and a pair of 360° propeller guards.
As you would expect from a DJI drone, the Mavic Mini fly’s exceptionally well and for such a small drone it holds up well in slightly windy conditions.
The FPV is of exceptional quality, the advanced 3-axis motorised gimbal does its job well, your pictures and videos will be distortion free and will look professionally made.
DJI have yet again produced a winning drone, the Mavic Mini is everything you would expect from DJI. It comes with most of their advanced features minus the obstacle avoidance technology and the Fly app has been developed for beginners in mind and comes with some very good features that will enhance your flying experience. If you are looking to purchase a drone for under $500, do not loom at any other drone other than the DJI Mavic Mini.