I already said it in the title, but I’m going to say it again: I’m excited about the new DJI Mini 2!
If you’re looking to get into aerial photography, you may not be as excited as I am. You can find a refurbished Mavic Pro for less than $800. Sure, that’s more than the DJI Mini 2’s $449 price tag, but the Mavic Pro is probably a more capable drone, and all the quirks have already been worked out for you. New DJI drones often have issues.
I am an FPV pilot. I’m not excited about using a photography drone, but it is a tool I wouldn’t mind having in my drone backpack. I can’t imagine carving out enough room in my bag for a Mavic 2 Pro, and I’d never get $1,750 worth of use out of one.
I can see fitting the Mavic Mini or the Mini 2 in my big drone bag. It doesn’t look much bigger than two of my 6S 1,100 mAh flight batteries, and it only weighs 249 grams. I bet a lot of people are excited that the Mini 2 comes with the bigger controller that can hold a tablet. I’m never going to use a tablet, and I would prefer a smaller controller. Even so, I think I could make room for the controller.
What’s been upgraded compared to the Mavic Mini?
What do you get from the $50 price increase? There are some upgrades that I feel are pretty minor. They claim it has one minute of extra flight time. That’s only 3% or 4% more, and I don’t think that matters much.
The Mini 2 can record 4K at 30 frames per second. The Mavic Mini could only manage 2.7K at 30 frames per second. It is a nice bump, but I’m not excited about it.
It has also gotten a 7 mph increase in top speed. This will help make sure you don’t lose your drone on a windy day!
The big deal is the upgrade from WiFi to Ocusync. Ocusync provides a huge increase in range and reliability. You’ll fly farther. You won’t have nearby WiFi signals ruining your video feed. You can fly with more confidence.
Ocusync alone is worth $50.
I probably won’t be buying one
It is a neat product at $449. You can get two extra batteries and some extra accessories in the Fly More bundle for $599. If I did buy a Mini 2, it would be the base model. If 20 to 30 minutes of flight time isn’t enough for my limited use case, then it is probably also time to upgrade to a Mavic 2 Pro!
NOTE: This is the sort of video I capture with my FPV freestyle drone.
I can’t imagine using the Mini 2 for anything other that recording b-roll for YouTube videos. I can point it straight down at the car while I’m unloading my gear. I can use it like a GoPro on a 30’ tripod to get another perspective on whatever fun thing my friends and I might be up to.
I’d still be getting the really cool shots with my 5” freestyle miniquad or a cinewhoop.
The original Mavic Mini has gotten cheap!
You can find refurbished Mavic Minis at very reasonable prices. I’m not going to link to any here, because I don’t know who the reputable dealers are.
You can get a Mavic Mini Fly More bundle with three batteries for $399. That’s $50 less than the Mini 2 with a single battery. A refurbished Mavic Mini with a single battery is closer to $300 or $325.
Sure, you won’t get Ocusync, but maybe you don’t need that extra range.
If you’re an FPV pilot like me, this seems like a neat toy that just might fit in your ThinkTank backpack. If you’re interested in dipping your toe into the aerial photography waters, the Mini 2 sure looks like a great way to get some experience without breaking the bank!
The DJI Mini 2 is a rather capable drone considering its price tag. Possibly more capable than a $450 drone should be! That is assuming this doesn’t have all the horrible bugs that plagued the DJI Spark when it was first released.
What do you think? Is the DJI Mini 2 as good of a value as I think? Will it be fully functional on release, or will we have to wait for a few months’ worth of software updates from DJI? Are you already flying a Mavic Mini or Mini 2? Tell me about it in the comments, or stop by the Butter, What?! Discord server to chat with me about it!