Estimated reading time: 14 minutes
The long-awaited DJI Mini 2 also called DJI Mavic Mini 2 is finally out, and it stands up to the hype it’s received towards the release.
There were rumors, spoilers, but finally, we get to test the official drone from DJI. DJI has been quite successful with their Mavic series considering the Mavic Air 2 is one of the best drones for filming and photography.
DJI Mavic Mini 2 comes as an upgrade to the DJI Mavic Mini, and it has some significant improvements in the camera and operating range.
It maintains the same compact design as the Mini, but it’s more robust, faster, has a better OcuSync transmission and higher quality videos and photographs.
Do you want to learn more about this new drone and why you should consider it? Let’s get started.
Table of contents:
- About DJI:
- The DJI Mavic Mini 2:
- How Is It like to Fly DJI Mini 2?
- Is it beginner-friendly?
- Is it worth the investment?
DJI has come a long way – from an idea in a dorm room in 2006 to one of the world’s biggest drone empires.
DJI was started by Frank Wang, who was passionate about UAV systems for a long time. He moved his start-up to Shenzhen, where DJI started by selling drone parts and DIY drones.
DJI released the first drone, the DJI Phantom 1, in 2016, and they have been releasing successful drones, with their latest being the DJI Mavic Mini 2.
DJI has invested heavily in Research and Development. They built their first hardware and software, which was the key to their success in the UAV sector.
For instance, DJI was the first drone company to introduce the inbuilt GPS and compass.
DJI also introduced the Lightbridge transmission system that enabled drone users to view their drone’s footage even at a long-range.
The self-diagnosis software system is another of DJI’s creation. It enables drone users to test the functionality of a drone and identify any malfunctions.
Currently, DJI is the leading manufacturer of ready-to-fly drones useful in most sectors, including filming, photography, and Real Estate. Their after-market parts are also readily available in online and local stores.
The DJI Mavic Mini 2:
As we’ve mentioned, the DJI Mavic Mini 2 improves on the DJI Mavic Mini. I’ve used the Mavic Mini, and it’s a pretty solid drone. It manages a 2.7K video, which is good enough for that price range. It also records images in JPG format.
Before we discuss the new improvements in detail, let’s make a brief comparison between the Mini and the Mini 2.
|Features||Mavic Mini||Mavic Mini 2|
|Flight duration||30 minutes||31 minutes|
|Size||140*81*57 mm||131*81*58 mm|
|Sensor||1/2.3-inch CMOS, 12MP||1/2.3-inch CMOS, 12MP|
|Resolution||2.7K/30p at 40 Mbps||4K/30p at 100 Mbps|
|Photo Format||JPEG||JPEG and RAW|
|Zoom||none||4X at 1080p, 3X at 2.7K, and 2X lossy zoom at 4K.|
|Image modes||Timed shots||AEB Triple shots and Timed Shots|
|Top speed||29 mph||36 mph|
If there’s one area DJI significantly improved on the Mini, it’s the camera. On the outside, Mini 2’s camera is identical to its predecessor.
However, it outputs 4K video quality at 30 FPS. It also records footage on the SD card at 100 Mbps compared to Mavic Mini’s 40 Mbps.
DJI Mavic Mini 2 comes with the same 1/2.3″ CMOS 12 MP sensor that enables it to shoot RAW footage. Raw footage gives you more control over the image compared to JPG footage. It also has further information.
Traveling at a maximum speed of 36 MPH, Mavic Mini 2 is quite fast for a small drone. You can view this speed through the live stream, but flying it overhead past you lets you get the complete feeling of how fast it can be.
Despite being relatively light, DJI designed this drone to withstand gusts of wind traveling up to 24 Miles per Hour.
Mini 2 promises 31 minutes of flight time. It may not seem as much improvement since the Mavic Mini has a 30-minute flight time. However, considering that Mini 2 has more power and can withstand winds, that minute makes it a better bargain.
Wi-Fi connection is excellent for connecting at a short-range, but it’s easily interrupted. OcuSync, on the other hand, enables a flawless feed even when the drone is very far away.
Did I mention DJI’s Mini 2 drone can fly as far as 10 Km from the controller?
That’s right. And even though flying out of the line of sight is prohibited, it’s still great to know that you’d still get a high-quality feed at that distance.
Mind you. It still has a Wi-Fi connection that allows you to transfer photos from the drone to your phone at very high speeds (20 Mbps).
For starters, the smartphone is to be mounted on top of the controller. It’s a retractable mounting section with the antennae integrated at the top. This controller is larger than the Mavic Mini’s controller, and it has comfortable grips.
The Controller takes some getting used to, but it works great. Beginners will also love the Return-to-home button on the left that allows users to fly the drone back home in case of any issues.
You can set the altitude at which the drone should fly when returning home. If your area has trees, buildings, and other obstacles, you may need to set it higher.
The Controller also has a switch that allows you to switch between the 3 flight modes. The “Cine” mode allows the drone to fly at 13mph, “Normal” mode at 22 MPH, and “Sport” mode at 36 MPH.
In the top-left corner is the “fn” button that allows you to switch on the auxiliary lights, making it easy to fly and land the drone when it’s dark.
The top-right side also has a button that allows you to switch between photos and videos.
There’s also a gimbal wheel that will enable you to tilt the camera as the drone is midair. There’s even a shutter button that allows you to take shorts or record video clips.
Batteries also last hours of flights, and the USB port at the bottom makes it easier to charge.
Mavic Mini’s propellers tend to get damaged when in storage. As a result, they fail to give enough lift. Mini 2’s propellers are a bit longer and sturdier and comes with a rubber propeller guard that holds the propellers together when the drone is folded.
Panoramas allow you to view a broader view of an area. And Mavic Mini 2 has three different types of panorama views.
The Sphere captures at least 26 images to create a spherical image. 180 captures seven images to create a landscape photo. And the Wide view comprises nine shots that make a large square photo.
DJI didn’t include Intelligent Flight Modes like ActiveTrack or Point of Interest, but the Mini 2 can still achieve some Quick shots. These include;
- Dronie – Where the drone flies 120 feet above the object of interest.
- Helix – The drone spirals at 120 feet.
- Rocket – This is a great feature that allows you to take a broader view of the subject. All you have to do is select the subject by tapping it or dragging the box to it. The drone will fly vertically upwards while focusing on the subject, generating a 15 seconds video.
- Circle – Just as the name suggests, the drone circles the subject as it records. This mode also generates a 15-seconds video that you can edit and share on social media platforms.
- Boomerang – This is the latest addition to the Quickshots. It allows the drone to move towards the subject and away from it while following an oval path.
When taking Quick shots, always ensure the drone is in the Position Mode (P-Mode). It would help if you also flew in areas with few obstacles such as trees or buildings.
Mavic Mini only has one image mode, Timed Shots. Mavic Mini 2 came with an extra image mode, the AEB (Auto Exposure Bracket) Triple shots.
AEB allows the camera to take three photos of the same object at different exposures. With these three shots, you can select the best fit or the one that’s adequately exposed as you edit the footage.
Mini 2 Zoom is another feature that sets it apart from the original DJI Mini. You can get a 4X zoom when shooting 1080p (2X lossless and 2X lossy zoom).
When shooting at 2.7K, you’ll get a 3X lossy zoom and 2X lossy zoom at 4K. Zooming capability is another area DJI improved on.
DJI Fly app:
DJI’s Fly app was introduced with Mavic Mini, and it also works on the Mini 2 and Mavic Air 2. It’s pretty straightforward to select the Panorama, Quick shots, check the battery levels, how much flight time is remaining, and even view the footage.
You can also schedule your flights, find new flight spots, or even get to meet more drone enthusiasts through the app. Geo-fencing is also integrated in the drone. This is where the drone can’t fly in restricted areas.
As a new user, you will need to set up a DJI account and activate your drone. DJI will guide you through the process. You should also update the app often by connecting to Wi-Fi.
There’s a Pre-flight section that allows you to set the RTH altitude, maximum altitude, and maximum distance. You should adjust these altitudes based on the regulations in your region.
You should also pay attention to the GPS signal strength and it can be done by checking how many satellites the drone is connected to.
If the signal is strong, the app indicates “Takeoff permitted.” With a poor GPS signal strength, the Return-to-Home function won’t be useful.
You can also adjust the shutter speeds and exposure (ISO, or switch to auto-exposure where the camera determines the best exposure based on the lighting.
Setting the exposure manually gives you more control and the there’s even a meter that alerts you of underexposure or overexposure.
Front LED Light:
Unlike the Mavic Mini, the Mini 2 has an LED light that allows you to spot the drone from far. You can customize it from the app to help you identify your drone when you and your friends all have the same drone.
Price and Availability:
DJI Mavic Mini 2 is currently going for $419, which is affordable even for beginners. You can also go for the Fly More Combo that costs $539. So, what do you get in this combo? It comes with three batteries, a case, and a charging hub.
Like most DJI devices, the charging hub also allows you to charge other devices such as phones and controllers.
You also get a snap adapter that will enable you to attach additional accessories, 360 degrees propeller guards, and a DIY kit.
How Is It like to Fly DJI Mini 2?
Mavic Mini 2 weighs 249 grams, and all the accessories fit into the case nicely. This makes it easily portable. Besides, it has a foldable design that allows you to fit it in your jacket’s pocket.
Flying is pretty straightforward. To switch on the drone, press the power button once. And then press again and hold until all lights are on. This is the same process you’ll use when switching on the remote controller.
You can take off through the app or the controller. Hold both the joysticks inwards to start the drone and push the left joystick upwards to fly the drone and downwards to land. Furthermore, hold the left joystick downwards until the propellers stop running.
If you enjoyed flying the Mavic Mini, you’d enjoy this upgraded model. It’s also less noisy.
Here there is a video that will explain you more-
Is it beginner-friendly?
I find the Mavic Mini 2 to be more suitable for beginners and hobbyists. The controls are easy to figure out, it’s affordable, has a great camera, excellent stability in wind, and an extended flight time.
Pros and Cons:
- It has a powerful and functional camera.
- The propellers are more durable compared to the first Mavic Mini.
- The controls have extra features – return-to-home, toggle, phone mount at the top, and gimbal wheel. These features give you more control over the drone.
- It has a longer flight time.
- It’s small, light, foldable, and easily portable.
- The propellers make less noise compared to the Mavic Mini.
- It has no object-avoidance systems and tracking features.
- Images from the Panorama require some post-processing before being used. Not all new users may be willing to take hours to clean up the photos.
- There are cases where the gimbal flips back up, and you have to keep readjusting it to take a top-down shot.
Is it worth the investment?
Yes, it is. It may lack some advanced features, but that’s no deal-breaker since it flies just fine without them. DJI addressed the issues presented by the Mavic Mini when building the Mavic Mini 2.
As we’ve mentioned, they improved the camera, speed, stability in strong wind, and they included a robust wireless connection.
Whether you’re buying a new drone or upgrading from the Mavic Mini, this drone is worth investing in. However, it still lacks compared to Mavic Air 2. So if you’re looking for a more professional drone and are prepared to spend couple more $100 or more, you can consider DJI Mavic Air 2.
DJI Mavic Air 2:
DJI Mavic Air 2’s sensor sets it apart from other drones. It’s ½ inch sensor that’s capable of shooting 48MP photos and 8K videos.
Even though you may not have to utilize the 48MP and 8K, it means that you’ll have a higher bit rate for the 12Mp and 4K videos.
It has a 34-minute flight time, which is slightly longer than the Mini 2. DJI is known for its top-notch 3-axis gimbal, so you’ll be pleased to know that they’ve installed it in the Mavic Air 2.
That’s not all. It has the Obstacle-avoidance features and Active Tracking that lacked in the Mini 2. It also has HDR features at 4K and 30 FPS and a FocusTrack that tracks and films the subject locked in the frame.
The long wait for this drone to be released was worth it, especially to those who have used the Mavic Mini. DJI restricted features such as the range and video quality in the Mini to make the Mini 2 a better bang for the buck, and it worked.
Why get a 2.7K video drone when you can have a 4K video quality drone for just an extra $100? Not forgetting the better connection at a long-range, longer flight time, and more robust propellers.
DJI’s Mavic Mini was the best drone under $500, but I think that title should now go to the new DJI Mini 2.
Does DJI Mini 2 Needs To Be Registered?
No, It is not required to register your DJI Mini 2 drone as it falls under the 250g (0.55lbs) cut off category. However, it is always good to register your drone.