Mavic 2 was finally released and as we own Mavic Pro, we are thinking as you do – Is it worth upgrading to Mavic 2? We examined all the pros and cons of Mavic 2 in comparison with Mavic Pro and Mavic Air and sum it clearly into table to help you to decide if it is time to upgrade.
If you want to compare any DJI models in details side by side, you can do it on official DJI website.
Mavic 2 Pro vs. Mavic 2 Zoom
Mavic 2 comes in two versions. Mavic 2 Pro and Mavic 2 Zoom. The body is totaly identical on both models, only difference between these 2 is the camera – and the difference is huge. Because the camera is the most innovative upgrade in Mavic 2 series, let’s look a bit more into the details.
Mavic 2 Pro camera
Mavic 2 Pro has 20MP 1” CMOS Sensor Hasselblad camera which is a huge step up (old Mavic Pro and Mavic 2 Zoom have only 1/2.3” sensor).
This means much more information in your pictures and videos, better low light capabilities of camera, higher dynamic range and lower noise. Sensor size is the most important factor when evaluating camera quality. To understand how big the difference is, look at following picture showing sizes of Mavic sensors.
In case you missed it – DJI had in January 2017 acquired a majority stake in Hasselblad company. Hasselblad is a top camera maker company with more than 100 years of experience and now DJI is using their knowledge. That says enough about the quality of new camera on Mavic 2 Pro.
The Mavic 2 Pro camera has adjustable aperture from f/2.8 to f/11, so you can keep shutter speed at 1/50sec without ND filters to achieve cinematic smooth video. It also allows you to change the depth of field thus making this much more versatile and professional camera.
You can make 10bit 4k video at 30fps and 100mbps bitrate. Again to compare with old model, Mavic Pro was able to record only 8bit 4k at 30fps and 60mbps.
Those 10bit vs 8bit doesn’t look like big difference, but it is. In result it means Mavic 2 Pro can record 1.07 billion tones of color whereas old Mavic Pro only 16.78 million and this difference will give you much more space in post-processing.
If you wonder about slow-mo, Mavic 2 Pro can shoot 1080p at 120fps. Old Mavic Pro can do 1080p only at 96fps.
Another good news is that gimbal is much more sturdy now and it is not this rattling fragile thing on rubbers as it was on Mavic Pro. The only disadvantage is that Mavic 2 Pro does not have portrait mode. Portrait mode allows you to turn camera 90 degrees and make panorama much more effectively. Not a big deal, but good to know.
You can buy Mavic 2 Pro on official DJI website for 1449 USD/EUR now with 3-5 days shipping date.
Just for comparison – Mavic 2 Pro has the same sensor size as Phantom 4 Pro, so you won’t be ashamed to make professional work with Mavic 2 Pro. And as we shoot with Phantom 4 Pro often, we can’t emphasize enough how great the camera is. Only advantage of Phantom 4 Pro now is the 4k60 video option.
Mavic 2 Zoom camera
Mavic 2 Zoom does not have this amazing Hasselblad camera and neither 1″ sensor. It has only 12MP 1/2,3″ sensor which is same size as on Mavic Pro, but Mavic 2 Zoom has 24-48 mm optical zoom. That means 2 things:
- You can make more detailed shots of your objects without flying close to it and disturbing it.
- It allows you to make very cool shots at 48mm which have cinematic feel and bring fresh feel into drone videos. All consumer drones have fixed focal length (around 30mm) and it means wide field of view. That is good, because you want to capture the whole landscape, but it starts to be a bit boring seeing every time the same perspective. With Mavic 2 Zoom you have the option to smoothly zoom in and switch between wide field of view and zoomed perspective at 48mm.
DJI showed this perspective very well for few seconds in their introduction video of Mavic 2 here:
Mavic 2 Zoom allows you to make 12MP still pictures and 4k video at 30fps and 100mbps bitrate.
Having continuous optical zoom brings you also 2 new features worth mentioning:
- You can make Super resolution photo of 48MB in 1 click. Camera will zoom and creates several pictures which will automatically stitch into 1 Super resolution picture of what you see in your live view. This technique is used by photographers when they need high resolution and high quality picture. Now you have it available as pre-programmed function.
- Another quite cool feature of Mavic 2 Zoom is Dolly zoom quick shot mode. It creates almost hypnotic shot when the drone is moving back while the camera is zooming in. It existed before, only you had to create zooming digitally in post processing. Now you you can do it by pressing one button. You can check how it looks on this video.
All in all we believe that Mavic 2 Zoom is great tool for creative videomakers, but it cannot compete with quality of the camera on Mavic 2 Pro.
You can buy Mavic 2 Zoom on official DJI website for 1249 USD/EUR now with 3-5 days shipping date.
Another big improvement on Mavic 2 series is upgraded transmission technology between the drone and remote control. OcuSync 1.0 was first introduced on Mavic Pro and it turned out to be the best transmission technology DJI could offer. Now with OcuSync 2.0 DJI showed that they can go even further.
OcuSync 2.0 offers live video feed at 1080p up to maximum 8km control distance. It automaticaly changes transmission frequency between 2.4 and 5.8Ghz to ensure the best signal quality. Also the latency is reduced to 120ms.
It is great that DJI doesn’t stop improving, but OcuSync of old Mavic Pro was already very reliable technology (7km max distance and 1080p on shorter distances), so we don’t consider this as huge advantage in comparison with Mavic Pro.
Obstacle avoidance system
Obstacle avoidance now works in all directions. DJI added sensors on sides but also on top of the drone, so it will be very difficult to crash the drone now.
This is great for new users who are not 100% sure about their flying, but be aware that side sensors work only at Activetrack and Tripod mode. Also note that avoidance system doesn’t cover all 360 degrees, as sensors have only limited operating angle and doesn’t work at all in Sport mode.
Together with APAS system DJI introduced on Mavic Air, you are able to automatically fly around obstacles.
In reality we barely ever use avoidance system, so this is not such a great improvement for us. Still we have to say that upper sensor (working up to 8m distance) is good to have as you cannot look with you camera directly above so at certain situations this can be very useful. Also sensors gives you more confidence seeing in live view how many metres you are away from obstacles.
Battery on new Mavic 2 has just slightly higher capacity than Mavic Pro (3950mAh vs 3830mAh), but due to better motor regulators, better designed propellers and body aerodynamics Mavic 2 has now 31 minutes of flight time (Mavic Pro has 27 min). This is the flight time in perfect conditions so in reality it will be maybe 5 minutes less. Still quite impressive for such a small drone.
Again 4 extra minutes is not the most important upgrade of new Mavic 2, but it is pleasant to have more time in air to make the shots you want.
Weight and dimensions
This is the only parameter which is better with old Mavic Pro. As the new Mavic 2 has bigger battery, camera and more sensors, the weight raises from 734 grams of Mavic Pro to 907 grams of Mavic 2 Pro (Zoom is just 2 grams lighter). Folded dimensions of Mavic 2 are also slightly bigger 214×91×84 mm in comparison to Mavic Pro 198x83x83 mm.
This is not significant change, so we don’t consider it something to worry about. If you owned Mavic Air though, you would carry around double the weight (Mavic Air has only 430 grams) and much more bulky bag. Mavic Air is still by far the smallest drone from Mavic series with 168×83×49 mm.
Mavic 2 can reach maximum speed of 72 km/h due to better aerodynamics. Mavic Pro was able to fly at 65 km/h.
Well this is quite impressive, but Mavic 2 is not a racing drone and most of the time you need to fly slow to make smooth shots. Only moment when you will appreciate higher speed is when you will need to fly against strong wind. Mavic 2 will be able to overcome stronger winds, so it is actually worth it.
DJI developed low noise propellers and motor regulators which they used first time on Mavic Pro Platinum. Now they use this technology on Mavic 2. So nothing new for owners of Mavic Pro Platinum, but Mavic Pro owners will enjoy now this benefit if upgrading.
Remote control has now bigger battery, so you will be able to operate remote control for 135 minutes. That means about 6 drone batteries time. That is about 30% extra battery time in comparison with Mavic Pro.
This is very pleasant upgrade for travelers and for professional use when you need to fly one battery after another.
DJI has also developed new function – when your phone or tablet battery capacity lowers to 40% or less, remote will automatically starts charging the device.
Now the remote has detachable sticks as on Mavic Air.
The picture button on remote control can be pressed half way to focus. This is the same functionality as Phantom 4 Pro and any DSLR. Very convenient that you don’t have to touch the screen all the time.
And there is one more new modification of remote control. On the place where there was a Sport mode button on remote control of Mavic Pro now there is a button which switches between Normal mode, Sport mode and Tripod mode. Small thing but makes your life easier, because Tripod mode is very usefull when making video.
More new features
Some more new features of Mavic 2 worth mentioning.
Mavic 2 has now built-in hyperlapse function. It allows you to choose the path before, record hyperlapse and save it as video file on your SD card. You can also save RAW pictures made during the flight.
Active tracking 2.0
Active tracking is now brought to perfection. It can now foresee the movement of the tracked object and even if the object dissapears for few seconds, the drone continues to track the object in the anticipated direction. Also it uses all of the sensors during the Active track and automaticaly avoid obstacles, so you really don’t have to worry about crashing the drone.
DJI informs in small letters on the bottom of their website that they prepare service which will make it possible to change the camera from Mavic 2 Pro to Mavic 2 Zoom and back. It seems that this will not be possible to do at home and you will have to send the drone to the DJI service. How much it will cost is not known for now. But it is a good news if you are not sure which version to buy.
Camera tilts up
Because of the position of the propellers Mavic 2 Pro camera can look up and not having propellers in the shot. Not that much as on Parrot Anafi, but much more than on Mavic Pro and it allows for some new fresh shots.
Mavic 2 now also takes the 8GB internal storage feature of Mavic Air. Quite useful when you forget you SD card.
Mavic 2 is designed to operate in temepratures up to -10 Celsius, whereas Mavic Pro only to 0 Celsius. We flew even with old Mavic at minus temperatures and nothing happened, but new Mavic 2 is designed to withstand even more extreme temperatures.
Comparison of Mavic series
We created following table to clearly see all the parameters of Mavic series, so you can decide – Is it worth upgrading to Mavic 2?
You can also compare the drones in more details on official DJI website.
Is it worth upgrading to Mavic 2? Definitely. Mavic 2 Pro is the best DJI drone in Mavic series. They packed small body of Mavic with all the best inventions and technologies they have and added camera from Hasselblad. The result is just amazing. No compromises, no flaws. If you consider upgrading your old Mavic Pro with new drone, Mavic 2 Pro is certain choice. We even forgive the bigger weight and dimensions, because what it offers is so worth it.
And what about Mavic 2 Zoom? For sure it has a place on the market as well. It brings new fresh features and functionality into the world of drones. But for us it is just no competitor with Mavic 2 Pro.
We are getting Mavic 2 Pro. Let us know in the comments what you think about new Mavic 2 and which version are you getting.