This Is the Drone You’re Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review
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Our verdict of the DJI Mavic Pro:
If you're looking to upgrade your aerial video footage, or simple want a compact drone, then the Mavic is the drone for you! If you've never flown a drone before, you should practice on a cheaper model first.
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The Mavic Pro is an unbelievably tiny drone made by DJI. You can fold it up small enough to fit into a bag or large coat pocket. Packed full of incredible features, this drone is the best drone I have ever flown. Let’s take a look at what makes it so special, and why it’s worth the $1000 price tag.

Size Matters

As someone who has owned and flown a variety of drones, I can confidently say the Mavic is tiny! It makes larger drones like the GoPro Karma and the DJI Phantom 4 look enormous in comparison. Weighing 734g (1.6lbs) — most of which is the battery, this drone weighs about as much as an iPad Pro.

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review Mavic Folded

Measuring 198mm (7.8inches) by 83mm (3.3inches) when folded, and 335mm (13inches) square when fully unfolded, the Mavic is almost half its size when folded. Much like the Yuneec Breeze, the propellers also fold in, and “automatically” unfold themselves when spun up.

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review Mavic Unfolded

The design of this drone is nothing short of incredible. The undercarriage is made of metal, with various fins and sensors covering it. It even has a fan for self cooling when powered up but not airborne. You get a series of plastic gimbal protectors, used to prevent dirt from impacting the lens, and to keep the gimbal locked in place during transit.

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review Mavic Undercarriage

My only gripe is the height — it sits very low to the ground, meaning you need an unobstructed area to take-off and land in. Long or even moderate length grass will soon get tangled in the propellers.

Taking Control

The Mavic Pro comes with a “traditional” controller as standard (hooray). You still have to use your phone, however. The controller has a screen which provides basic information, such as altitude, speed, number of GPS satellites, and more. Your phone via the DJI GO app provides many more features, such as calibration, advanced settings, live video feed, and much more. As much as I dislike using a phone to control drones, this does work quite well.

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review Mavic Handheld 2

Your phone slots into the adjustable mount beneath the controller, and connects using the included adaptor — several are included for various connections, including Micro-USB, USB-C, and Apple Lightning. Using a phone such as the Google Pixel (not even the XL model) was a challenge, and it only just fit in providing I remove the phone’s protective case.

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review Controller In Hand 5

The controller has various joysticks and buttons to control the drone. You can start and stop recording, tilt the camera, adjust camera brightness and more without even looking! Just like the drone, this controller is very small — comparable to a video game controller (unlike the Phantom 4 controller, which is massive). The two antennas fold down flat, and lock together with a reassuring “snap”. Not only this, but they provide a massive 8 mile (13 kilometer) range — although it’s not advisable or even legal in most countries to fly a drone out of eyesight.

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review Controller In Hand 2

Stop Droning On

The Mavic Pro is just a joy to fly. Take-off is easy due to one touch launch control, as is landing (but you can manually land as well if you’d like to). The drone is surprisingly stable — even in high winds. Sure, a bit more weight would help keep things steady, but that may ruin the portability.

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review Mavic Flying Props 3

Not only does this drone have GPS and intelligent return to home capabilities (as is to be expected from a drone costing this much), but it comes with various short range sensors and detectors. These are primarily on the bottom and front, and work together to form an object avoidance system. The drone uses haptic and audio feedback to warn you when you get near an object. Get too close and it will stop. This does not work behind the drone, however, so be careful you don’t reverse into an object. As a general rule, if you don’t get carried away, you won’t have a crash. If you want to fly between gaps or low to the ground, you can disable this obstacle avoidance.

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review Mavic Flying 12

The main intelligent flight modes are:

  1. Tapfly: The Mavic will fly to and keep a selected region in the shot.
  2. Tripod: This mode slows the drone right down, and allows you to capture beautifully smooth cinematic shots.
  3. Cinematic: This mode is similar to Tripod mode — It reduces the movements and speed to smooth out shots.
  4. Active Track: This was my favorite mode to use. You can pick a point, be it a person, bike, car, or whatever, and the drone will pan around to keep that object in the shot — even if it moves.

The Mavic Pro comes with a Lexar 16GB MicroSD card included — something not many other drones come with. You’ll want to stock up for extended flying sessions.

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review Mavic Flying Props 1

The battery in the drone lasts 28 minutes, but this is realistically 21 minutes when you factor in emergency power and take-off/landing. You’ll definitely want to buy spare batteries, but the controller is somewhat flawed. In nearly every other drone available, the controller battery lasts a very long time. More than enough for 5 – 10 flights, for example. The Mavic controller only lasts for one flight — not cool if you switch out drone batteries in the field.

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review Mavic Folded Behind

As is the case with many drones controlled by mobile phones, I experienced a few app crashes. These mainly occurred when using intelligent flight modes. Fortunately, you can still fly the drone with the analog sticks without the app, but it can get frustrating — the app crashed at least once on every single flight. This was slightly annoying, and the app certainly lets down the premium hardware. Hopefully these issues will be ironed out in future software releases.

Image Quality

Image quality from the Mavic is phenomenal. Shooting in full auto provides excellent results — much better than the auto modes of other drones. Extensive manual controls allow you to fine tune the image to your liking.

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review Aerial Shot

The Mavic can shoot in 4k at 30 Frame Per Second (FPS), and 1080p up to 96FPS. I’m a big fan of slow motion — it gives you a lot of options in post production, but this slow motion was garbage. It was totally unusable and over-sharpened. Here’s a 4k screenshot:

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review 4K Screenshot

And here’s a 1080p slow motion screen shot:

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review Bad Slow Motion

It’s hard to tell in these pictures, but trust me, you cannot use slow motion. Fortunately, 4k 30FPS looks so good that there’s no need to shoot in any other frame rates.

This Is the Drone You're Looking For: DJI Mavic Pro Review Mavic Tracking Mode

Maverick or Professional?

The Mavic Pro is an incredibly high performing drone. Its compact size means you can take it anywhere, while still retaining the high image quality and superb features of its bigger brothers.

DJI Mavic Pro Quadcopter Drone with 4K Camera and Wi-Fi + Ultimate Bundle with 16gb jump drive deluxe cleaning kit high speed card reader VR goggles and 1 year warranty extension DJI Mavic Pro Quadcopter Drone with 4K Camera and Wi-Fi + Ultimate Bundle with 16gb jump drive deluxe cleaning kit high speed card reader VR goggles and 1 year warranty extension DJI Mavic Pro Quadcopter Drone with 4K Camera and Wi-Fi Buy Now At Amazon $999.00

While it does have its flaws — particularly with the app, it is extremely impressive. You won’t be disappointed with this drone.

If $1000 is a bit steep for you, make sure you check out our 2017 buying guide to the best drones for all budgets The Best Drones for All Budgets in 2017 The Best Drones for All Budgets in 2017 What are the best drones? We covered quadcopters for the poor, rich, and everyone in-between. Whether you want a flying selfie machine or cheap cutting-edge toy, we've got you covered. Read More . If you’re ready to buy a Mavic Pro, or maybe you have one already, then be sure to read our list of websites on how to pilot a drone The Best of Internet: Learn How to Pilot a Drone with These Handy Websites The Best of Internet: Learn How to Pilot a Drone with These Handy Websites Drones are popular and it doesn't look like they're going away anytime soon. But they're surprisingly hard to pilot! Here's where to go when you're first learning to fly. Read More .

Enter the Competition!

DJI Mavic Pro Giveaway

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  1. John Wild
    August 7, 2017 at 1:01 am

    I've been a fan of drones since I first saw one back in 2007 I have bought cheap drones to get used to flying them when I first saw the mav I was blown away at how far drones have come but I would never be able to afford a drone like that that's why I'm entering this give away. It would be a dream to just fly one I hope I just get the chance one day thanks

  2. iCjay
    August 3, 2017 at 3:04 pm

    Hope I win, would be alot of fun.

  3. iCjay
    August 3, 2017 at 3:04 pm

    Hope I win, would be a lot of fun.. 8)

  4. arif
    August 1, 2017 at 5:18 am

    mavic pro is the best
    and this is a awesome giveaway.. i was searching for one

  5. Octavious Shropshire
    August 1, 2017 at 3:52 am

    I luv luv luv the Mavic Pro

  6. Abhi
    August 1, 2017 at 2:18 am

    Love manic pro

  7. alan ralston
    July 31, 2017 at 10:21 pm

    Sounds like a cool unit

  8. Maged
    July 31, 2017 at 9:35 pm

    Thx for this give away

  9. Nick Heidl
    July 31, 2017 at 11:23 am

    To Mavic or not to Mavic, that is the question.

  10. William Kershaw
    July 19, 2017 at 3:14 pm

    I'm of an age now when I can remember building go-carts out of old prams and a bit of discarded wood. Building dens everywhere was a thing to do to make the time go by, also the scouts was a good thing to join, but this tech is fantastic , how I wish it was about then!!!!!.
    DJI Mavic Pro is excellent for everything from photographs to land examination and searches for emergency services and farmers. This drone can be used for much more as well, absolutely brilliant.

  11. Kilgore Trout
    July 15, 2017 at 12:43 am

    I'm thinking I could fix the controller...
    So, why don't you send me the Mavic Pro and I'll take a look...

    :)

    • Joe Coburn
      July 15, 2017 at 8:49 am

      Haha, I might if you win the giveaway!

      • Kilgore Trout
        July 15, 2017 at 8:48 pm

        What giveaway?

  12. Bruno
    July 11, 2017 at 4:19 pm

    I think you have a flawed/defective controller. My battery also lasts a tremendously long time. And I hook my phone (iPhone 6S+) to it every single time. In fact, it is so reliable, I find the only time I feel I NEED to charge it is when I have to do a firmware update which requires the controller to be at 50% and above. In doing that, I get a full charge and the controller's juice essentially lasts until another firmware update is available. I'd contact DJI about your controller. They're very good about honoring claims under warranty.

  13. Dale
    July 11, 2017 at 2:31 pm

    My Mavic control battery lasts a long time. I used a full drone battery and had 91% left in the controller.

    • Joe Coburn
      July 11, 2017 at 3:46 pm

      That's interesting, I wonder if connecting the controller to your phone makes a difference.