It’s new. It’s improved. It’s the new DJI Mini 3 Pro! With a release date of May 10th, it’s been about a year and a half since the Mini 2 was released and the Mini 3 comes with huge upgrades, a redesign, and significantly more power. What’s new in this tiny package is an updated camera, obstacle avoidance, you have the ability to use focus track with all the follow me functions, point of interest, spotlight, master shots and all of the other quick shots, Hyperlapse, and updated battery with amazing flight time. I’m going to tell you everything you need to know about this beautiful little flying machine called the Mini 3.
The completely new design is quite different than the others in the Mini series lineup. The larger propellers, new aerodynamic body tilt, powerful obstacle sensing system and streamlined design allows for increased flight time and safety. This also makes the DJI Mini 3 slightly larger than the other minis but folds up to about the same size as the Mini 2 when folded.
DJI Mini 3’s Reimagined Gimble which is really cool, because its upside down, offers a wider rotation range for low angle shots and watching the camera shift to True Vertical Shooting is very interesting. There’s a notch on top front lip of the DJI Mini 3 Pro that’s new which gives you the wider rotation range and True Vertical Shooting, but also takes care of an issue when flying really fast used to make the camera shifts or twitches due to the restriction. The Mini 3’s major facelift takes this drone to never before seen heights.
Size & Weight
As I mentioned earlier, the DJI Mini 3 is slightly larger vs Mini 2 but similar when folded down. Its still a Mini easily fitting in your pocket and weighing under 250 grams, the same as the Mini 2, but they packed in the updated camera, new sensors and new batteries in the Mini 3 and is still under the 250 grams. More on the batteries later.
New Sensors and Obstacle Avoidance
Something you can’t find on any other Mini is Obstacle Avoidance. The Mini 3 has a slightly larger 1/1.3” sensor vs Air 2’s 1” sensor and with Tri-Directional Obstacle Sensing dual sensors on the front that looks forward backwards and sensors on bottom for underneath. The 1/1.3” CMOS sensor features dual native ISO and supports the direct output of HDR footage (HDR is built in and integrated)
Every shot is enriched with higher dynamic range to reveal more detail in highlights and shadows. The APAS 4.0 or Advanced Pilot Assistance Systems detects objects in the aircrafts flight path in real-time. This drone keeps itself safe by recognizing and avoiding obstacles, even in tough settings You have the option to turn this setting off, change it have the Mini 3 fly around the obstacle or just stop.
The DJI Mini 3 opened the aperture to a 1.7 vs the Mini 2 which has an aperture of 2.8. 1.7 Aperture means the structure of the Mini 3 has a larger opening near the lens which allows it to collect more light. This is amazing for low light environments and will enhance every aspect of your shot, even in the dark.
The DJI Mini 3 pro has an 82-degree field of view with a lens equivalent to a 24-millimeter lens. The new camera now has 4k/60fps videos and 4k/30fps HDR videos vs the Mini 2 which has 4k/30fps and no HDR. The added power the DJI mini gives with 4k/60fps allows you to go back post processing if you wanted to slow down any of your video. The Mini 3 also has 1080p at 120fps and 48MP photos.
Another thing I like is that the Mini 3 now has zoom. Zoom options available are 2x in 4k, 3x in 2.7k, and 4x in 1080p.This is nice to be able to do this, especially when you want or forced to stay distant from your subject.
The DJI Mini 3 has a normal color profile and now a D-Cinelike profile. D-Cinelike creates a flat profile, gives you more visual material and color opportunities. This means more options for you during editing after your shoot.
ActiveTrack 4.0, Point of Interest 3.0, and Spotlight 2.0 are all new for the DJI Mini and part of the FocusTrack feature. The ActiveTrack feature allows you to follow a subject around, or yourself, which is great if you’re a one person creator. Imagine being able to follow an animal or bird, or a player on a sports field. ActiveTrack makes that happen. With Spotlight you can maneuver the aircraft any which way when locked into a subject. The Mini will automatically track it. Lastly, select your subject for Point of Interest and choose a direction and the drone will fly a complete circle around the subject.
New Shooting Modes & Hyperlapse
The DJI Mini 3 now comes with new shooting modes like mastershots and quickshots with the ability to shoot wide-angle, 180-degrees, vertical, and sphere panorama shots.
Another cool feature added was Hyperlapse. For those unfamiliar with hyperlapse, it is time lapses in the air, the Mini 3 Pro moves at a slow pace, takes a series of photos and then compiles them into a video. You have 4 different modes in Hyperlapse. Free, which lets you pilot the DJI Mini 3 in any direction. Circle, you select a subject and perform a hyperlaspe around that. With Course-Lock, you set a direction and it it will just fly in that direction. And, lastly Waypoints, where you can set it to go to various designated positions.
Mastershots gives the power to the Mini 3 to get different dynamic shots automatically for you. You select a subject and the drone will perform a bunch of different maneuvers in the air of the subject. Mastershots does edit the footage but saves the raw footage in case you want to pull pieces from it to edit yourself or use later.
True Vertical Shooting
Even though this may seem like a small feature, I want to specifically highlight it because not only is it cool the way it works, but this is extremely practical if you’re posting content on social media combined with the portability and power the DJI Mini 3 Pro has.
Batteries and FAA Regulation
The Batteries on the DJI Mini 3 Pro have an amazing extended flight time of 34 minutes. You can buy the DJI Fly More Combo Kit which gives you 2 extra batteries, a 2-way charging hub, data cables, shoulder bag, spare propellers, and screws.
The DJI Fly More Kit Plus comes with even longer lasting batteries with extended flight times of 47 minutes. That is very impressive. One thing to note is that the larger battery does take your drones weight just over 250 grams. Otherwise, the DJI Mini needs no FAA registration. (Tip, replace the larger battery with the standard battery when traveling)
Remote and DJI Mini 3 Pro Combo
The DJI Mini 3 Pro is available in several combinations. You can buy the DJI Mini 3 Pro with no remote controller. It is also available with the RC-N1 remote controller. And, my recommendation, especially for first time buyers who won’t have a remote, the DJI Mini 3 Pro with DJI RC Smart Remote Controller. The built in 5.5” HD display screen is bright and crisp even in direct sunlight. Plus, you won’t have to use your phone and dramatically drains its batteries. I am also assuming that in the near future we will get an update that allows you to use the DJI RC Pro remote controller since the mini 3 is Ocusync 3. The same way DJI updated the D-Cinelike to 10-Bit.
With Ocusync 3, the DJI will give you 1080/30fps live feed at distances up to 12km. You can range test for yourself, I got to about 15,000 feet before I turned around, but still had bars. This is all enabled with the DJI video transmission system of Ocusync 3. This is an incredible little drone.
In Conclusion, I would definitely recommend the DJI Mini 3 Pro. It’s a powerful drone with advanced specs packed into a portable size. Even if you’re a professional, you get the professional features and quality of some of the larger drones while having the availability of easy travel. The Mini 3 lets you get shots on the go and on the fly with no regulations under 250 grams vs Air 2’s 595 grams. If you are new looking at maybe the Mini 2, I would consider spending a little extra for the Mini 3 since you will want to explore the more professional features the Mini 3 has to offer. The Mini 3 is fun for leisure, or business, and can perfectly record footage for local commercials, promos, social media, or anything else you can think of. The DJI Mic Wireless Microphone System and Audio Recorder as well as the DJI Action 2 Dual-Screen Combo Camera work well for added coverage with your DJI Mini 3 shooting session and work great alone too. It’s worth checking it out.