DJI Mavic Air vs Mavic Pro: Which drone is better?

In January of 2018, DJI pulled the curtain off its Mavic Air drone: a smaller, lighter, and smarter version of the company’s iconic Mavic Pro. On paper, the two drones look outrageously similar — but which one is better? You can find full specs for both the Mavic Pro and the new Mavic Air on DJI’s website (or check out our in-depth reviews), but unfortunately you can’t look at those pages simultaneously. So, to make your life easier, we’ve compiled the main specs and features and placed them side-by-side. Enjoy!

Mavic Pro vs Mavic Air

DJI Mavic Pro

dji mavic air vs pro download

DJI Mavic Air

dji mavic air press
Dimensions Folded: 7.7×3.2×3.2 inches (L×W×H)
Unfolded Diagonal: 13.18 inches
Folded: 6.6×3.2×1.9 inches (L×W×H)
Unfolded Diagonal: 8.38 inches
Weight 25.92 ounces 15.16 ounces
Battery Life up to 27 minutes up to 21 minutes
Max Horizontal Speed 40 mph 42 mph
Max Climbing Speed 16.4 ft/s 13.1 ft/s
Included remote controller? Yes Yes
Camera 1/2.3-inch CMOS sensor

Video resolution options:
C4K: 4096×2160 24p
4K: 3840×2160 24/25/30p
2.7K: 2720×1530 24/25/30p
FHD: 1920×1080 24/25/30/48/50/60/96p
HD: 1280×720 24/25/30/48/50/60/120p

12.7-megapixel still photos

1/2.3-inch CMOS sensor

Video resolution options:
4K Ultra HD: 3840×2160 24/25/30p
2.7K: 2720×1530 24/25/30/48/50/60p
FHD: 1920×1080 24/25/30/48/50/60/120p
HD: 1280×720 24/25/30/48/50/60/120p

12-megapixel still photos

FOV 78.8° 85°
Shutter speed 8 – 1/8000 s 8 – 1/8000 s
Gimbal 3 Axis 3 Axis
Max Range 4.3 miles  4.3 miles
Price $999 $799
Availability DJI DJI
DT review 4.5 out of 5 4.5 out of 5

Which one is right for you?

Both of these drones are awesome. In fact, they’re arguably two of the best drones on the market right now (though they both pale in comparison to the new Mavic 2 Pro and Zoom). If you’re looking to buy, either would be a great choice — but certain models are better suited for different pilots. All things considered, the Mavic Air would likely be better for a more novice drone pilot, as it features improved obstacle avoidance that allows the user to fly with more confidence. That’s not to say the Mavic Pro is an unruly drone to control, but its larger frame and less-advanced avoidance systems may be more suited to pilots who have logged more time in the air.

The Air is also smaller (and lighter) than the Pro, especially when folded — allowing it to slide easily into a pocket. With its included folding controller, it’s ready to pop inside your backpack and go on an adventure at a moment’s notice. The Pro isn’t that much larger, but it definitely isn’t pocket friendly. On the other hand, it does boast a longer battery life than the Air.

The biggest differentiating factor, however, is the price. The Mavic Air is a full $200 cheaper than the Pro, despite offering nearly identical features. That said, it’s definitely worth noting that DJI also offers refurbished Mavic Pros at the same 799$ price point that the newly released Air goes for. While that may not be as appealing as having a brand new drone, DJI’s refurbished models fly just as well as new ones do.

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