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The DJI Mavic Air 2 is the latest drone from DJI, setting a new benchmark for mid-range flying cameras. Packed with improved technology and features, this drone is a pleasure to fly and shoot with, making it the best option for most people with starting proce at $799.
Design and Performance
The DJI Mavic Air 2 has been redesigned from the ground up, looking like a smaller and more affordable version of the Mavic 2 Pro. It weighs 570g, making it just over half the weight of its bigger sibling.
The flight time is impressive, with up to 35 minutes on a single charge, and the drone can reach speeds of up to 42mph. The range is vastly improved, with a 10km range, thanks to the new controller featuring Ocusync 2.0.
Safety features include obstacle sensors on the front and rear of the drone, as well as sensors on the bottom for automatic landing. The drone also has geofencing to prevent it from flying close to high-risk locations.
Advanced Pilot Assistance System (APAS) 3.0 helps the drone reroute when obstacles come into its path, and the AirSense technology uses ADS-B aviation technology to receive signals from nearby airplanes and helicopters.
- Redesigned body looks like mini Mavic 2 Pro.
- New controller includes Ocusync 2.0 for improved range.
- Obstacle sensors on front and rear of drone to avoid collisions.
- Sensors on bottom of drone for automatic landing.
- Geofencing to stop drone from flying close to high-risk locations.
- Advanced Pilot Assistance System (APAS) 3.0 to reroute drone when obstacles come into its path.
- AirSense technology using ADS-B aviation technology to receive signals from nearby airplanes and helicopters.
- Features new motors, electronic speed controllers, improved battery technology, and enhanced aerodynamics.
- Flying is easy with smart technologies, including OcuSync 2.0 and anti-interference technology.
DJI Mavic Air 2 Camera
The DJI Mavic Air 2 boasts a new 12MP 1/2-inch Quad Bayer sensor that provides significantly cleaner images at all ISO levels. The camera lens has a full-frame equivalent focal length of 24mm with a fixed f/2.8 aperture. Edge sharpness has been greatly improved compared to its predecessor, and the drone features HDR photos, Hyperlight mode for low-light shooting, and Scene Recognition mode.
The drone also has the ability to shoot 48MP stills with the 12MP sensor, but the output images are softer than Raw files and standard size JPEGs. Video can be captured in Standard format or in the more neutral D-Cinelike profile, which requires color grading.
- New 12MP 1/2-inch Quad Bayer sensor provides significantly cleaner images at all ISO levels.
- Noise noticeable at even ISO 100, so ISO 400 is realistically the highest setting you’d want to use.
- Camera lens provides a full-frame equivalent focal length of 24mm with a fixed f/2.8 aperture.
- Sharpness throughout the scene despite the Mavic Air 2’s fixed f/2.8 aperture.
- Edge sharpness of the Mavic Air 2 greatly improved compared to its predecessor.
- HDR photos captures seven bracketed exposures that are then merged in-camera to produce an image with detail from the shadows to the highlights.
- Hyperlight mode designed for shooting in low light and merges several images to average out and reduce noise.
- Scene Recognition mode can recognize five scene types and optimizes settings in in-camera JPEG processing to each.
- Ability to shoot 48MP stills with the 12MP sensor, but output images are much softer than Raw files and standard size JPEGs.
- Video can be captured in Standard format or in the more neutral D-Cinelike profile that displays more detail in shadows and highlights and requires color grading.
The DJI Mavic Air 2 faces competition from the Mavic Mini, Mavic 2 Pro, and Mavic 2 Zoom. However, it offers far better value for money than the Mavic 2 Pro and Zoom, making it the best all-rounder for non-professionals. The Mavic 2 Pro and Zoom offer a larger sensor and zoom capabilities that the Mavic Air 2 lacks, but DJI produces the most consumer-level drones, catering to a wide range of photographers and videographers.
The DJI Mavic Air 2 is a fantastic drone with a range of improved technology, including a drone and controller connection up to 10km. However, the video feed still stutters and locks momentarily, which can be frustrating. Despite this, it offers a fantastic range of shooting modes, including 8K Hyperlapses, and is the smartest drone to date.
The deficiencies in design and performance of the original Mavic Air and Mavic 2 Pro have been addressed, making the DJI Mavic Air 2 a pleasure to fly and shoot with. It is the best drone for most people, according to TechRadar’s verdict.
- DJI Mavic Air 2 is the best drone for most people.
- Redesigned from ground up, smaller and more affordable version of Mavic 2 Pro.
- Sets new benchmark for mid-range flying cameras.
- Starts at $799, available for pre-order.
- Fly More bundle available for $999.
- Shipping expected in mid-May.
- Weighs 570g, just over half the weight of Mavic 2 Pro.
- Flight time up to 35 minutes.
- 42mph flight speed, vastly improved 10km range.
- Camera feed sometimes stutters, no screen on controller.
- Improved range, longer battery life, 4K/60p video, new shooting features.