DJI Mavic Mini – Flight in a smaller package

DJI has released a new, entry-level drone on the market. The Mavic Mini has just enough features to suit the beginner or travel enthusiast.

On October 30, DJI launched the Mavic Mini drone. Weighing only 249 grams, the Mavic Mini is currently the lightest drone in DJI’s product line. The unmanned aircraft is so small it appears dwarfed next to some smartphones.

The Mavic Mini has a 12 MP, 1/2.3-inch CMOS sensor with a field-of-view of 78°. The camera can shoot JPEG images in 4:3 or 16:9 aspect ratio. Video resolution maxes out at 2.7 K at either 25 or 30 fps. FHD 1080p video is also available in 25, 30, 50 or 60 fps. The Mavic stores videos in MP4 format.

The Mavic Mini is the lightest drone DJI has ever made. (Photo: DJI)

A 3-axis gimbal handles stabilisation to keep video footage relatively shake-free, provided that there’s not much wind.

DJI claims the Mavic Mini will fly for up to 30 minutes on a single battery in ideal conditions, which is probably due to its size.

New pilots can choose Position mode for basic flight while more seasoned pilots can opt for Sport mode for faster operation. CineSmooth mode lengthens braking time for more cinematic footage. With QuickShot, the drone can execute pre-programmed movements for cinematic effects.

  • Rocket – the drone will fly straight up while tracking a subject below
  • Helix – The Mavic flies up and away while going around a tracked subject.
  • Circle – the device will circle a subject at a fixed distance and elevation
  • Dronie – drone flies up and backwards while locked on to a subject.
The Mavic Mini is quite compact when folded. (Photo: DJI)

Being an entry-level drone, the Mavic Mini has a few drawbacks. The Mavic Mini only has sensors on the bottom of the device, so drone pilots won’t get the stellar obstacle avoidance that is present in the pro models. It can’t shoot RAW and doesn’t have colour profiles, so the camera and DJI’s software handles dynamic range and colours. There are no custom settings while shooting video and the remote uses a WiFi signal instead of the radio signal in the pro model drones.

Mavic Mini Fly More Combo package. (Photo: DJI)

DJI offers two Mavic Mini packages. For US$399, the basic Mavic Mini package provides all that’s needed to take to the skies. However, for US$100 more, the Mavic Mini Fly More Combo offers additional spare propellers, USB cables, and 3x the amount of extra screws. The Fly More Combo also includes a 360° propeller guard, 18W USB charger, two-way charging hub, and a carrying case.

Pre-orders began on October 30 and shipping starts November 11.

The Mavic Mini is an excellent choice for first-time drone flyers who don’t care about dynamic range or custom colour profiles and want to get cool aerial footage.

Renor is a creator and budding photographer who loves the outdoors. He likes using, talking and writing about technology.