If you consider purchasing a new drone, the DJI Mini 2 Vs Mavic Air 2 comparison is one of the most critical factors. Both drones offer very different features, and it is up to you to suit your needs best.
In this post, Lucidcam will take over the in-depth comparison of these two drones.
DJI Mini 2 Vs Mavic Air 2 – General
What is DJI Mini 2?
DJI’s second-generation entry-level drone, the Mini 2 ($449.99), gets a bit of a rebrand, dropping the Mavic moniker that’s long identified the company’s small, folding quadcopter series. It costs a bit more than the first-generation Mavic Mini but includes an updated camera, more powerful motors, and a stronger remote control connection.
It’s missing some of the more advanced features found in the $800 Mavic Air 2, but it’s a fine choice if you want to spend less–and avoid dealing with the FAA–earning our Editors’ Choice award.
- Stabilized 4K camera
- Raw and JPG photo modes
- Automated Quickshots
- Long flight time
- Stronger motors and connection than Mavic Mini
- GPS and other safety features
- No FAA registration required
- Still no color profiles for JPGs and video
- Omits obstacle avoidance and HDR
- Doesn’t include ActiveTrack or Hyperlapse
What is Mavic Air 2?
The Mavic Air 2 ($799.99) is DJI’s mid-tier entry in its small, folding drone series. It can fit in most cameras bags and has many safety features. The camera has a Quad Bayer design that captures crisp, detailed images and 4K HDR video. Its footage is smooth. The Mavic Air 2 is our Editors Choice if you are looking for a drone that costs less than $1,000.
- Superlative battery life
- Strong image and video quality
- Obstacle detection and avoidance
- Automated shots
- HDR video and Raw imaging
- AirSense transponder
- Video profiles limited to standard and flat
- App-based editing limited to 1080p output
- Remote omits EV control wheel
- Not easy to get Raw images to your tablet or smartphone
DJI Mini 2 Vs Mavic Air 2 – Comparison
DJI Mini 2 Vs Mavic Air 2 – Design and build
We can see that DJI is working towards standardizing drone appearances so that any Mavic we see will look like a giant Chinese drone. The Mini 2 is almost identical to the DJI Mavic Air 2 in its structure and arm folding system. After folding, both drones can fit into most backpacks.
However, the Mini 2 still offers a way to install the battery. The flap on the back of each drone opens upwards and reveals a compartment where you can insert the battery. This process is slightly more straightforward for DJI Mavic Air 2. You need to place it from the top at the designated place.
Sensors are an important distinction. The sensors are essential. DJI Baby does not have rear and front sensors. The more expensive models can offer a much better tracking function that allows us to choose any object to be followed by the drone. The Mini 2 lacks sensors, so this option would be extremely risky and could throw the drone.
Both drones are still weighed less than 600 grams. DJI Mini 2249g, and DJI Mavic Air 2.570g. These drones can be flown in Poland without any additional permissions, provided they can fly in the city’s airspace. The situation is more complicated for heavier multi-rotors.
They can be flown without any other permissions. We must maintain appropriate distances from buildings (100m vertically) and outsiders (30m horizontally). The operator will fly the drones below 600g in weight. The operator is responsible for any accident that may occur.
The propeller mounting system is a major plus on the DJI Mavic Air 2. It’s simple, quick, and easy to use. Simply push the propeller, twist it, and you’re done. The DJI Mini 2 has a more complex situation. The set comes with a screwdriver as well as the spare screws necessary to mount the propellers.
Each propeller is made up of two pieces and is attached to one screw. This significantly increases the time required for replacement. People who have to replace propellers outside will find the DJI Mini 2 solution very problematic. It is easier to lose the screws in such conditions. This could lead to the drone being grounded.
It is worth noting that cooling is also important. DJI Mini 2 focuses on passive cooling. We won’t find any fan inside the drone. A heat sink is located at the bottom of the housing to cool the device. DJI Mavic Air 2 has active cooling via a fan because there is more space inside the housing.
The fan speed increases with temperature. The Air 2 has a large heat sink located in the lower portion of the housing, which ensures optimal operating temperatures. This makes the ventilation system even more efficient.
DJI Mini 2 Vs Mavic Air 2 – Speed and manoeuvrability
It is almost impossible to describe the flight characteristics of drones in terms of meters per second. Once you are a pilot, the feeling will become second nature. The Mavic Mini 2 is lighter than the Mavic 2 and, therefore, more agile. It’s also exquisite, making it fun to fly. However, it will not be able to keep up with the Mavic 2 straight in a race.
Both drones have GPS and altitude sensors, so they can hover in pretty strong winds. Mavic 2 has more horizontal strength than Air 2. However, the Mavic Mini 2’s software (upgraded since its predecessor) can lean up to 40 degrees into the wind to prevent drifting.
The quoted wind resistance is the same. However, the Air 2 felt more comfortable in strong crosswinds due to its relatively powerful motors.
According to the spec sheet, the Mavic 2 is better suited for challenging environments with an operating range from [email protected] to 40%C, while the Mavic Mini 2’s bottom line is at freezing point.
Mountaineers will be able to appreciate the Air 2’s ability to travel up to 5000m above sea level, 1000m higher than the Mavic Mini 2.
You might find it interesting that both drones have slower descent speeds than the ascent. Hovering creates natural instability, and props at a lower speed take slightly longer to compensate. Upgrade, on the other hand, is somewhat self-correcting and can be quicker.
DJI Mini 2 Vs Mavic Air 2 – Camera performance
Consumer drones are not only fun, but they can also capture stunning aerial footage and unique images. Before camera-equipped drones, renting a helicopter to capture aerial shots of your home or a breathtaking geographical scene was necessary.
The Mavic Air 2’s camera performance is the most crucial consideration when selecting a drone for cinematography purposes. However, it is not the Mavic Mini 2 that excels.
Mavic 2’s camera has a half-inch CMOS sensor. Its effective pixels are 12MP and 48MP (JPEG, RAW), which means that it can be used in low light conditions and produces marginally sharper and larger files. The video resolution is between 4K and 2.5K at 60 frames per second, 1080p with up to 240fps, and HDR (High-Density Rang) variants of all three.
The Mavic Mini 2’s camera has a 1/2.3″ CMOS smaller sensor and has a pixel count of 12MP (JPEG or RAW). The Mavic Mini 2’s predecessor captured video in 4K and 2.7K at 30 frames per second, 1080p at 60fps, and stills in DNG Raw for better tweaking.
The Air 2 has the ability to shoot in a flat color profile, this makes it much easier to edit in post-processing for people how to know about color grading.
DJI Mini 2 Vs Mavic Air 2 – Flight performance
If this were a comparison between the Mavic Air 2’s predecessor and the Mavic Mini 2, the Air 2 would have walked it. The Mavic Mini 2’s new Level 5-wind resistance classification and greatly improved video transmission distance have changed all that.
Both drones can fly in winds up to 10.5 m/s (23 mph), and both drones come with DJI’s OcuSync 2.0, which delivers rocksteady video transmission over distances up to 10 km (users should note that it is illegal to fly any drone beyond the line of sight).
The Mavic Air 2 is 42.5 mph faster than the DJI Mini 2. Although it’s not worth noticing, it means that the Mavic Mini 2 is now better equipped to return in a headwind than its predecessor.
The Mavic Air 2 (and Mini 2 DJI) flight times are very similar when tested with a fully charged battery. However, the Air 2’s 34-minute flight time is slightly longer than the DJI Mini 2s 31 minutes flight time. While those extra three minutes may prove to be helpful, you’ll probably find that your drone rarely flies for more than that amount of time. You’ll fly your drone for 10- to 15 minutes at a time because it can be tiring.
Both drones perform equally well in the air. They are similarly stable in GPS hover mode, and they are easy to control. What is the result?
DJI Mini 2 Vs Mavic Air 2 – Controller and range
Both the Air 2 and Mini 2 DJI look very similar. They both use DJI’s OcuSync 2.0 radio systems which increase the reliability of the signal. This means that it should work within legal operating limits. Both can be used in the same way. Charge the remote, and then, when you get to your destination, grab the phone grip and attach your phone.
The Air 2 does offer a higher live view at 1080p. Still, on a typical phone screen, the difference between 720p and 1080p video preview isn’t as much use as you might expect, and what matters is the video you’re recording is to a Micro SD card onboard which should be uninterrupted either way.
It’s clear why DJI chose to use it for a few of their models. You can remove the control sticks for extra space, and they have bays to attach to. Even an iPhone 12 Pro in its original case could be fit inside. There is also a place beneath the phone grip and pop-up antenna for the cable to attach to your phone. It is convenient to have the cable in a tidy place, and that they are short, which is excellent.
A great feature is the ability to charge your phone with the remote. This allows you to keep your screen bright while flying and prevents your phone from going dead.
DJI Mini 2 Vs Mavic Air 2 – Battery life
- Mini 2: Flight time: 31 minutes
- Mavic Air 2: Flight Time: 34 Minutes
The Air 2’s 3500mAh 3S battery, which weighs in at 198g, allows slightly longer flight times.
DJI’s built-in charge meter is available on the Air 2 battery. This allows you to quickly check the charge (to within quarters) with a single button. This feature is not available on the DJI Mini 2, so managing multiple batteries can be a bit more complicated.
DJI Mini 2 Vs Mavic Air 2 – Gimbal
The Mavic Mini 2 and Air 2 have 3-axis mechanical Gimbals. They can absorb bumps, turns, and vibrations from the flight and produce smooth video. The pilot can also remotely control the angle of the camera, including tilting the lens down. Panning can also be done by turning the drone.
Air 2 has a slightly wider range of motion available to it than Air 1. This means that it can absorb slightly more turns, which is a plus. It’s also less wobbly, making it more stable as a platform for video.
The Mavic Mini 2 still manages to capture video quite smoothly, even against heavier drones. And since both can tilt to the artistically helpful [email protected] (straight up), there’s very little between them.
People are split on the issue of wind resistance. Sometimes they even place bets and test these drones to their limits. These drones are currently in my testing phase. Subscribe to get the video as soon as it becomes available.
Both drones can handle wind at the same speed, with both being rated at 29 to 38 kph.
Although I think the truth is close to the truth, I can only say that I have 2 observations from my DJI Mini 2 experience (which has been at least one week since I got it).
– It is much more stable in wind than the original Mini by quite some distance
It’s not as stable as the DJI Mavic Air 2, probably due to the Air 2’s extra weight. This was the biggest issue in terms of footage shaking.
These drones are fast, but the Air 2 is faster than the DJI Mini 2 (which can fly at a speed of 69kph or 42mph).
The Air 2 has the advantage of facing stronger winds because of this combination.
You can travel longer distances with less battery by using a higher maximum speed. Also, you will be able to capture fast moving objects such as cars and follow them in all weather conditions.
According to my subscribers, the main reason that draws many people to the Mavic 2 is its ability to track and avoid obstacles.
Mavic 2 has two sensors at the front and two at the bottom. It can stop when it hits an object, or use the APAS avoidance system for navigation through difficult environments. You can see the Obstacle Avoidance System in action here.
The Mavic 2’s front-facing sensors allow it to do follow-me modes as well as activity tracking. More information will be available soon.
An LED is also located at the bottom of the Mavic 2. This helps you see your drone at night.
Both these models can shoot stills and video autonomously, but the Mavic 2 has a few more tricks. The following QuickShots are available on both models: dronie and helix, rockets, circle, boomerang, and rockets. The accompanying DJI Fly App allows you to select the subject and the drones will automatically video it from a variety of cinematic angles.
There is no need for pilot input. Both drones can also take panoramas and hyper-lapse video stills. Only the Mavic Air 2 has Active Track, which allows it to follow the user during filming.
The Mavic 2’s basic retail price is significantly higher than that of the DJI Mini 2. This price difference can make the difference between sadness and anger when your drone crashes into a wall or disappears altogether in a body or canyon. It’s terrible enough to lose PS400/$350 worth of gear, but it becomes more painful when PS700/$600 or more gear goes missing.
DJI Mini 2 vs Mavic Air 2: Which is better for you?
You can view the DJI Mini 2 or Air 2 from two perspectives: Features and Weight vs. Features & Price. While the first is easy to answer as you don’t need to be under 250g, it is a personal choice. It can be used to save you the FAA registration in the USA, but you will need to register in the UK if you want to use the camera.
The decision of whether or not the Air 2’s more extensive feature list is worth the extra cost can be a bit more difficult, but it is worth starting by deciding for what purpose you intend to use the drone.
The DJI Mini 2 is ideal for anyone who wants to fly for pleasure and to capture images and videos for their family and friends. It also has a significant advantage in size and weight so you can take it to even more places that are worthy of immortalizing.
The build quality of both drones is not important. However, the larger Air 2 feels more sturdy, which makes it more suitable for frequent fliers. Professionals and serious hobbyists will also be able to make use of the drone’s features, as well as filmmakers who need to do a lot more follow-up shots.
The Air 2 is a great choice for busy content creators. You never know when you will need to capture higher frame rates or take full advantage of a high dynamic range. But if these features are new to you, you need to ask yourself if they would ever be used.
The Air 2 is also a great option for beginners, who don’t care about their budget. This simple reason is that collision sensors are better than no collision sensors. All other features are a bonus.
What about the Air 2s?
It’s also worth noting that for some photographers who can see the appeal of the Air 2, the DJI Air 2S might have some temptation too. For a little more money, and a little less flight time, you can hoist a 1-inch image sensor aloft in a similar airframe (albeit with even more collision sensors).