DJI Mavic Mini is now on sale at a €399 price point that should ensure it’s one of the most popular gifts this Christmas
New entry level drone DJI Mavic Mini is the smallest, most portable and easiest to use flying machine yet from the world’s leading consumer drone manufacturer.
The Mini keeps the classic Mavic design in a lightweight package and sports a 2.7k camera and a battery that lasts for 30 minutes.
That’s superior to the larger 4K Mavic Air that I bought when it came out in 2018.
Mavic Mini is actually dubbed a FlyCam rather than a drone. Because it weighs less than 250g — it’s 249g — you don’t need to register it as a drone with the authorities.
It is lighter than some smartphones and measures just 140mm x 82mm × 57mm and fits in the palm of your hand. It’s convenient to bring everywhere.
Just like the other drones in the Mavic range, it has a foldable design with collapsible arms that open out easily.
Anyone can operate a Mini safely – it’s the perfect introduction to droning and is immense fun.
Unlike all other Mavic drones, the Mini doesn’t use the well-known DJI Go 4 app.
Instead, it uses a simplified DJI Fly app that allows for simple control of the camera controls, flight preferences and QuickShot selection.
You simply slot your smartphone into the remote controller (which has screw-on joysticks) and connect the relevant cable.
As with other DJI remotes, the controller has a jog-dial to adjust the camera vertically to 90 degrees. This means you can look forward as well as down.
The Mini’s camera boasts a 24mm (equivalent) fixed-aperture f/2.8 lens with an 83-degree field of view.
It uses a similar sized 1/2.3in CMOS sensor as the Mavic Air and it’s capable of capturing 12MP jpeg photos. The ISO range is 100-3200.
The stabilised gimbal is 3-axis – superior to the Spark’s 2-axis set-up.
Mavic Mini can record video in 2.7K resolution in 30 frames per second (fps) and in full HD 1080p at 60 fps. Data transfer rate is 40 Mbps.
For a first-time flyer, all of this is more than enough tech on board.
You’ll be amazed by the quality of the footage and images.
But if you are more experienced user or an aerial photography enthusiast, it’s worth noting that Mavic Mini doesn’t support RAW image capture and there is no way to attach polarising or ND filters to the lens.
You can shoot photos in Auto or Manual and there are timed shots too. Manual control over video allows you to select Exposure Compensation, resolution and frame rates.
In general, videos and stills can be over-exposed if it’s a bright day outside so it’s a good idea to adjust the settings to allow for this.
Flying modes are Sport, Position, and Cinematic.
The latter adjusts the joysticks’ sensitivity to capture extra smooth video automatically.
The Mini can fly up to 500 metres above ground level, and boasts a range of up to 4km.
Automated Quick Shots available are the Dronie, Rocket, Circle, and Helix. These are immense fun.
If you want to use Mavic Mini indoors – check iJustine’s very funny video here to see how much fun it is – then you’ll need to put on the propeller guards.
These are included with the Fly More Combo pack. They are light and easy to install.
I’d recommend buying the Fly More combo as it also includes spare propellers, a handy carrying case and three batteries.
Battery life is claimed as 30 minutes but you’ll need to fly home at around 25 minutes.
A microSD card (the slot is below the battery portal) is used for storing your images and video – you can automatically save lower res versions to your phone by the way.
A micro USB port enables you to charge the drone when you are out and about.
There are no obstacle avoidance sensors as found on the Mavic Air but a couple of sensors at the base ensure smooth landings.
I was able to fly safely on a windy enough day — at speeds Met Eireann said were 18km/h.
If you are new to flying, then Mavic Mini is for you — the perfect starter drone that is so much fun with a decent amount of tech onboard.
And if you already own the likes of a Mavic 2 Pro you still might consider the fun and form factors and decide that Mavic Mini is a convenient bring anywhere drone.
So how much does DJI Mavic Mini cost and what are the key specs?
DJI Mavic Mini costs €399 from Harvey Norman. The Fly More Combo costs €499.
Key specs:Weight: 249g
Sensor: 1/2.3in CMOS
Lens: 24mm equivalent lens with 83-degree FOV and f/2.8 aperture
Photo resolution: 12MP
Video: 2.7K/30p and 1080/30p video
Battery life: 30 minutes