DJI has released a new drone called the DJI Mavic Pro. The new-release is unlike its larger predecessors in that it is completely fold-able. DJI has made portability the focal point, yet it seems that the drone has retained all the key features of previous larger drones such as the Phantom 4. The enhanced portability of this drone has solidified its place on the list of Top 10 Toys for Christmas 2016. We also have a Mavic Pro vs Phantom 4 article if that would interest you. In this DJI Mavic Pro Review we will tell you about this drone’s features, aerial footage ability and flying performance as well as touch on how much it will cost you and where to get the best deal. On some of our other pages you can also find in-depth information on the Mavic Pro’s price as well as on the drone’s exact specs. If you’re just looking to buy this fold-able, flying camera, click the link below:
Design and Aesthetics
The DJI Mavic Pro drone comes as a small folded up unit that has four extendable limbs at the ends of which sit the propellers. The propellers themselves also fold up, when you start the drone up they will automatically find their correct position by centrifugal force. You simply extend the arms outwards and then you have a ready-to-fly drone with a similar wing-span to that of the Phantom 4. The compact design means the Mavic Pro weighs in at just 1.6lbs as opposed to the latest Phantom which weighs about 3lbs. The sheer convenience that this new model affords users is one of the main reasons to buy the DJI Mavic Pro for Christmas 2016. The drone’s release has been much anticipated and some production set-backs have occurred but we believe the DJI Mavic Pro Release Date to be November 15 2016
The Mavic is also grey in colour with some golden detailing and breaks away from the futuristic white colour-scheme of previous models. The battery sits on the top of the main body of the drone and can easily be attached or detached for recharging. All the required ports (the USB port, Wi-Fi switch, remote control reset button and memory card port) sit on the sides of the main body of the drone and are nicely protected under easy-to-open plastic coverings. The front-mounted camera is also smaller than on previous models. Overall the design focuses on keeping things compact, enhancing portability and increasing the aerial maneuverability.2
The remote control is also completely new in terms of design. Previous models had large controllers while the DJI Mavic Pro has a small foldable remote controller. The remote has two limbs which fold out in order to hold your device below a built in screen. The top of the controller also has two antennae that fold out in order to ensure a good connection. The built in screen gives you your critical data such as altitude and speed while your device is used to give you the real-time image from the drone’s camera. Many have noted that the remote is extremely ergonomic, affords better control of the drone and is also far easier transport.
The Mavic Pro isn’t only far more portable and maneuverable but also retains and even expands on some of the features of the latest drones. Although it is so much smaller, it has the same five vision positioning sensors and the same obstacle avoidance system as the Phantom 4. This way it knows exactly where it is in the air and in relation to its surroundings, it will even stop before ploughing into an object or person.
OcuSync has replaced the previous Lightbridge technology that was used for video transmission while flying the drone. Basically, it’s the tech that allows you to see exactly what the drone is actually filming in real-time on your device screen. Lightbridge 2 is what is used with the Phantom 4 video transmission and was actually a big step forward from the use of a simple Wi-Fi connection to perform this role.
Lightbridge did however have some problems in that when the drone was at an extended range, sometimes the ‘real-time picture’ on the device would distort or become pixelated as if the connection was being lost. OcuSync now allows users to retain a 720p connection at a range of 4.3 miles (7km) from the drone. Not that you will be so far from the drone but it just improves the overall experience in terms of video downlink with the connection achieving 1080p when the drone is in close proximity. It has also reduced image latency down to 8 milliseconds. This gives you an excellent real-time image as you fly and is an important feature.
The Mavic Pro can reach a speed of 18 metres per second which equates to about 48 miles per hour. This is slightly slower (on paper) than the Phantom 4 which has a claimed top speed of 20 metres per seconds. In many of the tests I have seen, the Mavic has actually been far faster than the Phantom in Regular Mode and about the same in Sport Mode. Nonetheless, the Mavic is by no means slower due to its smaller stature and many have alluded to it as the sports car of the drones as it feels nippy, engaging and far more maneuverable.
The Remote Control now features a vibration safety feature. The remote control will actually vibrate when it wants to bring your attention to something on screen. A good example would be if the wind is very strong, it may buzz as you’re looking up at your Mavic, just to let you know that the winds are strong. This is an added safety mechanism and we like the inclusion of this tactile feature.
Under the protective covering of the SD card, there is also a switch where you can change over to Wi-Fi mode. Once enabled, this allows you to put the remote controller away. You can turn your Mavic on and fly it with Wi-Fi at a maximum range of 80 meters. This is convenient for situations such as bike riding or hiking where you don’t want to constantly have the remote control in your hands. It also allows you to perform tasks easily like take a selfie while you’re with your family. You can do this by simply accessing the app and using the virtual controls to control the camera shutter and other components.
The DJI Mavic Pro has a Smart Battery that can be fully charged within one hour and is capable of flying for a claimed 27 minutes in perfect conditions. You won’t get this kind of flight time if any of the advanced features or modes are enabled or if there are strong winds.
- ‘Tap-To-Fly’ allows you to tap an area on your device screen to send the drone in that direction.
- ‘Spotlight’ is a new feature that instructs the drone to do whatever is necessary in order to keep you in the frame at all times.
- ‘Trace’ locks the drone in a position behind or in front of you and holds it there for a tracking shot as it follows you.
- ‘Profile’ enables nice long tracking shots from the side as though the drone were a cable cam.
- ‘ActiveTrack’ is back and allows you to select a subject for tracking.
- ‘Terrain Tracking’ enables the drone to ascend a hill up to 30 degrees without crashing into anything.
- ‘Gesture Control’ is new and in a sense has brought selfies to drones. This mode enables you to wave at the drone to get its attention and then create a picture frame with your hands for it to take a picture of you.
- There is also built-in FPV (first person view) support which is an exciting part of the new drone, however we aren’t yet sure as to which FPV goggles will be compatible. There are rumours of DJI bringing out their own goggles for this feature.
DJI Mavic Pro Verdict
The DJI Mavic Pro is an awesome little drone and is sure to excite those who favor compact gadgets and portability. The image quality is still excellent although some say the Phantom 4 drone is capable of capturing imagery that is slightly crisper. The Mavic Pro definitely wins in terms of maneuverability and responsiveness and is far easier to take along with you than its larger predecessors. On average, those who have had a go with one of these, favor it over the previous DJI drones and we’re sure it’s going to be a massive hit this Christmas and into 2017. We hope that this DJI Mavic Pro Review has informed you about this new-release. If you have your heart set on one of these, you can find out more or buy your own at the link below: