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DJI Mini 3 Pro, photos and videos. This is the drone to buy

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DJI Mini 3 Pro, photos and videos.  This is the drone to buy
Written by aquitodovale

We tested the DJI Air 2S last year, and called it a near-perfect drone. The only criticisms were related above all to bureaucratic problems, associated with an excessive weight that DJI has not been able to reduce: the components have a weight, and certain functions also require certain components.

The DJI Air 2S had a 1 ”sensor, had obstacle detection sensors, had OcuSync 2.0, therefore 10 km of range and had a battery that lasted a good 31 minutes: hard to ask for more.

Just a year away DJI with the Mini 3 Pro managed to give much more in 249 grams: there is a camera with a 48MP 1 / 1.3 ”sensor, therefore large, sensor which is also equipped with a brighter lens, F1.7. There are obstacle detection sensors, with APAS 4.0 system and ActiveTrack 3.0, there are 4K at 60p, with a maximum bitrate of 150 Mbps (they were 120 on Air 2S) and there is OcuSync 3, an improved transmission system. .

DJI annihilated the Air 2 and created a problem in the Air 2 S, which just for a slightly larger sensor no longer has a reason to exist.and whoever bought it won’t be very happy with it: the new Mini 3 Pro is a bomb.

A flying photo / video camera, for which DJI has further increased the shooting quality especially in low light conditions. We recently took it with us to Jordan, and we flew it into the Wadi Rum desert under gusts of wind of about 30 km / h at a very high ambient temperature.

The drone, despite its size, it remains very stable in flight and it is a pleasure to drive, however it may happen that, if you try to return to the starting point against the wind, in addition to obviously consuming the battery very quickly, the overheating warning appears on the remote control, as if it is doing a little too much effort .

The presence of proximity sensors is a kind of extra safety for those who do not feel very practical: we used the drone to follow, with manual guidance, the jeep we were on and the fact that we have the sensors allowed us to make flights grazing very close to the vehicle without the risk of crashing into, perhaps following braking. There is always the automatic tracking system, but obviously the pleasure of manual flight is lost.

The side sensors are missing, and this is something to take into account: if we rely on automatic tracking, know that, in the presence of side obstacles, the drone will end up against us. If it comes to big obstacles there are no problems: the wide-angle cameras, also aided by the inclination of the drone, allow you to recognize a large obstacle on the side. If it is a tree, or a smaller element, the risk of impact is high: the system behaves practically like on the Air 2S.

In terms of quality, nothing can really be said: we are dealing with a product designed for amateur use and the quality, both photos and videos, is definitely superior to that of a smartphone.

Open original

If we calculate that the videos end up on TV or platforms like Youtube (or social), the files at 150 Mbps in 4K @ 60 that the drone is able to record on the SD memory they have an exceptional quality.

This year, as a bonus, the particular structure of the gimbal also allows you to shoot vertical videos ready for social media: it is a possibility, but for shooting we strongly recommend masking the remote control screen and then making a crop during editing. . Much better to get a vertical video by cropping an excellent 4K Ultra HD than having a vertical 4K as a basis, then difficult to use if you need some sequence in landscape mode.

More useful, the vertical, for photographs: today the biggest limitation of drones has always been the impossibility of taking vertical photographs and the Mini 3 also solves this problem, there is a button that rotates the gimbal. Speaking of gimbals, the ability to rotate makes it more exposed to possible falls, compared to the classic DJI drone stabilizer protrudes more.

On the choice of shooting and shooting modes there are obviously several limitations: if you want obstacle detection with the tracking system you cannot go to 4K at 60p, the maximum is 2.7K / 30p and in the same way if you want photos at 48 megapixels you must necessarily use the single shot, no braketing or burst. HDR for videos can be had instead in 4K, but only up to 30p and always for those who want to push a little further, in addition to a recovery at 150 Mbps of bitrate the D-Cinelike is also provided, therefore the mode recording that favors the maximum dynamics expressed by the sensor as long as the color correction is carried out later.

The last point worth dwelling on is the new supplied remote control: it’s called DJI RC and it’s a simplified version of DJI’s most advanced remote, the DJI RC Pro.

No external antenna, but integrated display: on board runs a version of Android with the DJI app pre-installed. The system requires the remote control to connect to the wi-fi and via Wi-fi both the app, the firmware of the remote control itself and the operating system of the drone are updated.

The remote control has a card slot, and can also be used for live streaming: we are faced with a solution that allows us in a few seconds to be active and totally independent from a phone, with the limit that on board the remote control we are it will be exclusively the official software. Third-party apps such as Litchi cannot be installed, even if the creators of the excellent waypoint navigation app have found a way to install it on the “Pro” version, so it is not excluded that something can also be done with the DJI RC .

The ergonomics of the remote control are impeccable, the brightness of the screen is all in all good even if the desert has put it to the test: the 5.5 “screen it is bright enough to be able to manage the drone in its piloting operations but at times it is difficult to have a real feedback of the visual parameters, exposure and colors. The OLED screen of a high-end phone all things being equal is certainly more visible, and we believe that soon they can come out with a hood to be installed on the remote control as third-party hoods have already come out for the Pro version. DJI, at least in the Fly More Combo Kit, he could still think about it: it was a welcome accessory.

The only critical issues we encountered during all our tests: despite being in the desert, the connection was not always perfect: sometimes there were uncertainties and small blocks of the transmission. The second criticality concerns the video quality: it is excellent, but as for many other drones, the change of framing also leads not only to a change in exposure, this is normal, but also to small fluctuations in the color of the clip, which forced us to make precise cuts to the movie to try to balance the scenes.

The last critical issue, and you can see in the video above, is the search for a card that fits. Although we had a fast SD Card with us, during the recording at the maximum available data rate we occasionally lost a few frames. This did not happen with another equally fast card, so the suggestion, except for nasty surprises, is to take a good card, set the maximum video quality with the highest bitrate and do some test shooting.

Here are some photos taken during our tests.

The DJI Mini 3 Pro is a Mini, but it is not a Mini. The thing that will annoy potential buyers the most is the price: in the version with remote control it costs 1009 euros, with the Fly More Kit which costs another 189 euros to which the 139 euros of DJI Care Refresh must also be added, absolutely recommended.

A type of drone, the Mini, which until recently cost just over 500 euros today requires almost three times the amount. DJI did not spare itself: it could have been more conservative and reduce the features instead he preferred to go all-in and put in everything he could put in while remaining in the 249 grams of weight (on the scale there are 247).

If we look at the quality and what can be done, today the Mini 3 Pro is more affordable in all respects than the Air 2 and also offers a much better video (and photo) quality thanks to the larger sensor and the more optics. bright. It is even more convenient than Air 2 S. To make this one preferable to other models is not so much obstacle detection, useful but not something you can rely on for a follow me in difficult conditions, when the gain you get with this sensor in low light conditions and the ability to shoot vertically.



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