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Saturday, October 28, 2023

DJI Air 3 vs. Mini 3 Professional: which drone is best for you?


DJI has two completely different strains of drones which can be typically thought of client drones — one thing a pastime photographer (or maybe an expert photographer on a price range who doesn’t need all of the bells and whistles of a Mavic). They’re the DJI Air and DJI Mini strains. And now that we’ve marked the launch of the DJI Air 3 in July 2023, each strains can declare to be on their third generations of drones. So in a mashup between each third generations of drones, the DJI Air 3 vs. Mini 3 Professional, which drone is best?

The DJI Air 3 has far more options and extra highly effective expertise general. It’s additionally means greater and far more costly — two main detractors. Nobody needs the next value level, however many folks actively search smaller drones (particularly these within the sub-249 gram class, which the Mini 3 Professional falls into).

On this information to the DJI Air 3 vs. Mini 3 Professional, I’ll weigh the professionals and cons of each that will help you choose the precise digicam drone for you:

Evaluating costs (winner: DJI Mini 3 Professional)

At $759 for the DJI Mini 3 Professional versus $1,099 for the Air 3 (assuming you choose the mannequin with the fundamental controller), it’s clear which one wins out on value. You’ll save greater than 30% (that’s $340) by choosing the Mini 3 Professional over the newer Air 3.

Associated learn: DJI Mini 3 vs. Mini 3 Professional: which drone is best?

DJI Air 3 vs. DJI Mini 3 Professional key specs

However in fact, the (largely) higher specs on the Air 3 could make it simple to justify the $340 larger value. So with that, right here’s a comparability of the DJI Air 3 vs. Mini 3 Professional and a breakdown of what every affords so you’ll be able to resolve the perfect drone on your price range:

DJI Air 3 DJI Mini 3 Professional
Takeoff Weight 720 grams < 249 g
Dimensions Folded (with out propellers): 207×100.5×91.1 mm (L×W×H)
Unfolded (with propellers): 258.8×326×105.8 mm (L×W×H)
Folded (with out propellers): 148×90×62 mm (L×W×H)
Unfolded (with propellers): 251×362×72 mm (L×W×H)
Max Flight Time 46 minutes 34 minutes (with Clever Flight Battery)
47 minutes (with Clever Flight Battery Plus *)
Max Wind Pace Resistance 12 m/s 10.7 m/s
International Navigation Satellite tv for pc System GPS + Galileo + BeiDou GPS + Galileo + BeiDou
Onboard digicam(s) Two cameras (Large-angle digicam and Medium tele digicam) One digicam
Picture Sensor 1/1.3-inch CMOS, Efficient Pixels: 48 MP 1/1.3-inch CMOS, Efficient Pixels: 48 MP
ISO Vary Video: 100-6400
Picture: 100-6400
Video: 100-6400
Picture: 100-6400
Max Picture Measurement 8064×6048 (48 MP) 8064×6048 (48 MP)
Max Video Bitrate 150 Mbps 150 Mbps
Sensing Sort Omnidirectional binocular imaginative and prescient system, supplemented with an infrared sensor on the backside of the plane Ahead, Backward and Downward imaginative and prescient system
Video Transmission System DJI O4 DJI O3

So what do all these specs truly imply? Right here’s a deeper dive into the DJI Air 3 vs. DJI Mini 3 Professional drones:

Evaluating cameras (winner: DJI Air 3)

If we’re evaluating cameras, realizing that we’re not evaluating two cameras, however fairly, three. That’s as a result of the  DJI Air 3 comes with two built-in cameras (making it the primary of the Air line to supply such a factor). The 2 cameras on the DJI Air 3 are:

  • A 1/1.3-inch CMOS wide-angle digicam
    • 24mm format equal
    • F1.7 aperture
  • A 1/1.3-inch CMOS 3x medium tele digicam (can obtain 3x optical zoom)
    • 70mm format equal
    • F2.8 aperture

The extensive angle cameras on the 2 drones are surprisingly comparable. Whereas the Air 3 is top-of-the-line so far as digicam drones come, the DJI Mini 3 Professional shocked drone followers when it delivered its personal 1/1.3-inch CMOS digicam sensor with twin native ISO and a pair of.4μm pixels for top element. That sort of tech was one thing beforehand solely accessible on high-end cinematography drones.

Each drones even have some nice-to-have digicam modes, together with a vertical taking pictures mode designed to make it simpler to shoot movies and pictures particularly for mediums like TikTok or Instagram reels.

However the place the Air takes the cake is that secondary tele digicam. Now, videographers can shortly swap between zoom and extensive angle in the identical flight with out having to take down the drone to vary lenses, as you’d must if you happen to had been flying a high-end digicam drone like DJI’s Encourage 3.

Whereas the Mini 3 Professional does tout a zoom function, it has one main limitation: video solely. The Mini 3 Professional guarantees to assist digital video zoom as much as 2x in 4K, as much as 3x in 2.7K, and as much as 4x in Full HD. Weirdly, it didn’t have picture zoom.

In case you’re counting on zoom (notably for pictures), you’ll want the Air 3.

Associated learn: DJI Air 3 evaluation: probably the most highly effective new addition to Air Collection but

Evaluating plane power (winner: DJI Air 3)

You may’t ignore the myriad ways in which the Air 3 is a much more highly effective plane than the DJI Mini 3 Professional They embrace:

Higher battery life: The DJI Air 3 affords as much as 46 minutes of flight time. In the meantime, the bottom model of the Mini 3 Professional affords simply 34 minutes of flight time, which means you get an almost 50% enhance in battery life if you go for DJI’s newer, extra highly effective DJI Air 3 drone.

That stated, the DJI Mini 3 Professional makes a valiant effort to win within the battery life class, and that’s all attributable to a separate battery known as the “Clever Flight Battery Plus.” This can be a battery offered individually by DJI through the DJI Mini 3 Professional Fly Extra Plus Package, which prices $249 and contains two such batteries in addition to another goodies like further propellers and a shoulder bag. That further $249 value to get the longer battery life narrows the $340 value hole between the Air 3 and Mini 3 Professional, so preserve that in thoughts if you happen to’re evaluating the 2 primarily based on value.

One other downfall of the Clever Flight Battery Plus is that it’s decently heavy (and heavier than the usual Mini 3 Professional battery). When your Mini 3 Professional is working with the Clever Flight Battery Plus, it’ll find yourself weighing greater than 249 grams, which is in any other case one of many key the reason why individuals select the Mini 3 Professional drone over the DJI Air 3 (I’ll dive deeper into why drones weighing lower than 249 grams are such a giant deal down beneath).

Improved impediment sensing: So far as the drone’s potential to detect obstacles (after which plan an alternate route round them), the DJI Air 3 is the clear winner. It begins with the Air 3’s APAS 5.0 tech versus APAS 4.0 on the Air 3. However the true sport changer comes all the way down to the variety of sensors at play.

The DJI Air 3 is the primary drone within the Air Collection to incorporate omnidirectional impediment sensing, one thing the Mini line doesn’t have. Whereas the Mini 3 Professional has a ahead, backward and downward imaginative and prescient system, the Air 3 affords consciousness in all instructions. Consider it like this: the Mini 3 Professional has a couple of blindspots, so it’s not protected to imagine it’s crash-proof. Whereas DJI received’t outright name the DJI Air 3 crash-proof (hey, it’s inevitable someway, one way or the other to somebody), that is just about as shut as you may get.

Higher video transmission: The DJI Air 3 supply O4 video transmission, which is an enchancment upon the Mini 3 Professional’s O3 video transmission. With the Air 3, you’re taking a look at a most transmission distance of 20 km (assuming low interference, corresponding to flying at most seashores), whereas the DJI Mini 3 Professional has a max transmission distance of simply 12 km.

DJI Mini 3 Pro
If portability is vital to you, the DJI Mini 3 Professional positively wins out given its small dimension.

Evaluating drone dimension (winner: DJI Mini 3 Professional)

Whereas the Air 3 is actually a extra highly effective drone, it’s additionally so much greater — and that’s not essentially a great factor. All of DJI’s client drones have drastically dropped in dimension from the clunky days of the DJI Phantom line. However whereas the DJI Mavic Professional was a sport changer again when it launched in 2017 due to its foldable arms that condensed it to the scale of a water bottle, it’d even be thought of a “giant drone” by immediately’s requirements.

And the Air 2S is definitely a tad bigger than the Mavic Professional, which is 198 mm lengthy when folded. In the meantime, the Air 3 is an even-longer 207 mm lengthy. But, the Mini 3 Professional is simply 148 mm at its longest level.

The Air 3 can also be heavier, coming in at 720 grams whereas the DJI Mini 3 Professional is lower than half that at beneath 249 grams.

Small dimension is certainly nice for people who wish to journey with their drone however reduce baggage house, or for people who find themselves simply at all times on-the-go and wish to really feel empowered to tuck their drone into, say, a backpack with out it taking an excessive amount of actual property amidst their different stuff.

However then there’s a extra severe cause why it’s essential for the DJI Mini 3 Professional to weigh lower than 250 grams, and that’s the federal government. Many nations classify drones primarily based on their weight, and construct in additional laws or restrictions primarily based on that. It’s fairly frequent for nations (together with the U.S.) to make drones that weigh beneath 249 grams exempt from many types of regulation, together with registration necessities.

Smaller, lighter drones just like the DJI Mini 3 Professional assist to alleviate the paperwork burden from the pilot, and they’re additionally theoretically safer within the occasion of a crash (much less drive upon impression).

Who’s the DJI Mini 3 Professional finest for?

Now that I’ve dug into the variations between the DJI Air 3 vs Mini 3 Professional, it’s time to know which drone is finest for which particular person. There is no such thing as a “one finest” drone. There’s merely the perfect drone on your scenario.

So with that, the DJI Mini 3 Professional is finest for a couple of kinds of individuals, together with:

  • Entry-level drone pilots
  • Individuals who take their drones with them on outside adventures
  • Frequent vacationers
  • A extremely price range aware pilot who nonetheless needs an amazing digicam

The Mini 3 Professional is nice for brand spanking new drone pilots. With its compact dimension, it’s a dream for vacationers, bloggers, outside journey fans and athletes who desire a drone that they’ll throw of their bag, however received’t get in the way in which of no matter else they’re doing, whether or not it’s jet-setting around the globe or occurring and off-the-grid tenting tour.

And with the value distinction, that $340 financial savings could be a saving grace for probably the most price-sensitive drone pilots.

Associated learn: DJI Mini 3 Professional drone evaluation and information

Purchase the DJI Mini 3 Professional drone now from:

Who’s the DJI Air 3 finest for?

If the Mini 3 Professional is for the pilot who prioritizes their sport, expedition or vacationers over the drone itself, contemplate the DJI Air 3 to be the other. The DJI Air 3 is for the one that emphasizes flying the drone above all else, thus they don’t thoughts the bigger dimension and bigger price ticket. As a result of in return, they get a way more stable flying expertise due to options like longer flight time, improved transmission and omnidirectional impediment sensing.

An expert photographer in search of a less expensive various to the Mavic 3 would discover this drone to be ultimate.

Consider it this manner: if you happen to contemplate your self an athlete, explorer or traveler first and a drone photographer second, get the Mini 3 Professional.

In case you contemplate your self a drone pilot first after which the sports activities, excursions and adventures come second to that, then get the DJI Air 3.

By the way in which, if you wish to see a whole rundown of all the pieces you get if you purchase the brand new Air 3 drone, take a look at my recent DJI Air 3 unboxing video!

Between the DJI Mini 3 Professional versus Air 3 drones, which one would you fairly have? Share your remark beneath!

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