DJI has launched the Mini 3 Pro, an updated version of its compact drone with some new features that have never been available before in other Mavic drones. Here is a summary of its key features, a quick rundown of the different kits and how to get a discount.
1. Under 250 grams:
The Mini 3 Pro is still under 250 grams. Is that a big deal? In certain EU countries, this lets you fly without a license.
In the US, a drone that is under 250 grams doesn’t need to be registered with the FAA. But if a drone has to be registered, it only costs $5 for ALL your drones (not for each drone). Whether you need a Part 107 license is not about the weight but whether you plan to use the drone commercially.
Another potential benefit in the US is that a drone under 250 grams can also fly over a crowded area by a licensed pilot. But this is true only if the drone has something to protect the people from lacerations which typically is understood to mean prop guards, and if you put prop guards on the Mini 3 Pro, you will exceed 250 grams.
2. 47-minute flight time (with Plus battery)
The Mini 3 Pro has an optional larger battery that will enable it to fly up to 47 minutes, compared to the standard battery with 34-minute flight time. Please note that using the larger capacity battery could increase the weight, putting it over 250 grams.
3. 1/1.3-inch 48mp 4K sensor
The Mini 3 Pro has a new 1/1.3-inch size sensor that can capture 48 mp photos and 4k 60fps video.
All other factors being equal, a larger sensor will have better image quality. The Mini 3 Pro’s 1/1.3 inch sensor is about 69 sq. mm., compared to the 1/2.3 inch sensor of the Mini 2, which is about 30 sq. mm, so the Mini 3 Pro’s sensor is about twice as large as the Mini 2’s sensor. I am supposing we’ll see a 1-stop improvement in image quality, so shooting with the Mini 3 Pro at ISO 800 should be similar to the image quality of the Mini 2 at ISO 400.
4. Vertical orientation option
One of key features of the Mini 3 is that the camera can rotate to portrait orientation for social media. If you don’t care about social media, the vertical orientation could also be useful for panoramas. When shooting a 360 panorama, shots in vertical orientation can capture more of the zenith. There is no indication that Mini 3 Pro will do this automatically but it should be possible to do it manually.
5. Camera can tilt up 60 degrees
The Mini 3 Pro has a camera that can tilt up to 60 degrees, compared with around 20 degrees for the Mini 2 in extended mode or 35 degrees for the Mavic 3. This can be useful for taking shots with an upward angle. It might also be usable for reducing the blind spot in the zenith (the top) of the 360 photo.
6. Tri-Directional obstacle avoidance
Mini 3 Pro has obstacle avoidance in front, below and to its rear and has APAS 4.0, which can detect objects along the Mini 3’s flight path.
Which DJI Mini 3 Pro kit should I buy?
There are three versions of the Mini 3 Pro. What’s the difference between them?
The DJI Mini 3 Pro (DJI RC) standard version is $759 and includes a standard DJI RC-N1 controller. That is the same controller used in Mavic 3, Air 2S, Air 2, and Mini 2, so if you already have one of those drones, you can use the same controller and get the version without the controller for $669. Alternatively, the upgraded Mini 3 kit is $909 and includes a DJI RC remote, which has a built-in display. Please note it is not the same as the DJI RC Pro remote, and I don’t know yet if the RC Pro will work with Mini 3 Pro.
If you want additional batteries, there are two Fly More kits. The two kits are identical except that the $249 Fly More Kit Plus has two 47-minute batteries, while the $189 Fly More kit has two smaller 34-minute batteries. Both come with charging hubs, extra props, shoulder bag, USB C cable and screws.
How to get a discount?
Mini 3 Pro is available directly from DJI but you can get a discount if you buy from B&H Photo with the Payboo card, which gives you an instant rebate on the sales tax.
- $669 Mini 3 Pro without controller
- $759 Mini 3 Pro with standard controller
- $909 Mini 3 Pro with DJI RC controller
The Fly More Kit and Fly More Plus Kit are currently available only from DJI.
I have ordered the basic version without controller (I will use my Mavic 3 controller). If you have any questions, please let me know.