DJI Mavic Air

DJI Mavic Air: Predictions

Leaked Mavic Air Pictures

We’ve found a few leaked images of the upcoming Mavic Air. It looks like it is confirming what we thought all along. DJI is making a smaller Mavic to slide into the consumer lineup between the Spark and the Mavic Pro. We were initially a bit depressed when we saw what looks like a 1 or 2 axis gimbal on the Mavic Air. Then we looked closer at the 32 MP camera and our spirits were lifted. We have some details below on all the features DJI will be including with this camera.

Mavic Air grey folded image
Take a look at the DJI Mavic Air in grey.
DJI Mavic Air Leaked Pictures
Take a look at the sensors on the Mavic Air.

DJI is set to make a big announcement January 23rd and we think it just might be the Mavic Pro 2 and the Mavic Air. We know that DJI is holding an event in New York at 10 am EST. We have intel suggesting potentially two new drones. The invite below suggests big changes to the Mavic lineup as the “Adventure Unfolds.”

Mavic Air Evidence

There is a lot of evidence pointing to the Mavic Air being the reveal this Tuesday. From eyewitness accounts in Bali, where the Osmo Mobile 2 videos were filmed, to the account of a DJI employee talking about products in an Australian DJI store. One of the more interesting tidbits we’ve found was that the URL will redirect back to the DJI homepage, but if you try something like you’ll get an error (404 This page doesn’t exist). DJI has something in the works. Not to mention the growing number of leaked images in the last 3 days.

DJI Mavic Air
The DJI adventure will unfold on January 23 in New York. Is that the silhouette of the new Mavic Air?

We are expecting the release of the upgraded Mavic Pro 2 and the new and smaller Mavic Air. The Mavic Pro 2 will be an upgrade to the existing Mavic and the Mavic Air will be a smaller entry-level Mavic. DJI will also talk a little more about the upcoming release of the Tello as well. Let’s talk more about what the Mavic Air could be. If you want to learn about the Mavic 2 click here.

While we suspect the Mavic 2 will adopt the stying of the current Mavic Pro, we think the Mavic Air will have a brand new streamlined look. If the shape shown on the invitation is any indication, the smooth curves of the Mavic Air will reflect the smooth Phantom 4 Pro styling as much as the slim folding design of the Mavic Pro.

DJI Mavic Air
The Mavic Air will take its place right between the Mavic and the Spark

The Mavic Air makes a lot of sense if it fills the gap between the Spark and the current Mavic. The new Mavic Air will be a little bit smaller than the current Mavic. It will have almost the same capabilities as the original Mavic. It will have front obstacle avoidance, while the Mavic Pro 2 gains full 360-degree obstacle avoidance.

Adventure Unfolds – What’s in a Name?

The title of the January 23 announcement is “Adventure Unfolds”. The unfolding part is not very cryptic, we think it clearly indicates at least one folding drone being announced. The “adventure” in the name seems to speak to the portability of the drone. Like the Spark and the Mavic before it, the Mavic Air will be very compact.


DJI Mavic Air all folded up
The props on the Mavic Air don’t fold. That’s great news.


Noone (except for us) seems to have noticed that none of the pictures show folded props. The Mavic Air was designed specifically to avoid the need for folding props. The arms tuck in nicely next to the drone and the props are centered along the body. The props even self-align as the arms are folded. No more flopping props like the Mavic Pro or Mavic Platinum.

DJI Mavic Air Specs

At 21 minutes, the Mavic Air will have a shorter flight time than the Mavic Pro but longer than the Spark. There is a clear trend that smaller drones have shorter flight times, it just comes with the territory. The range should be somewhere between the 2000 meters of the Spark and the 7000 meters of the Mavic Pro. Hopefully, it retains Lightbridge technology instead of WiFi FPV like the Spark.

DJI mavic air specs translated from Chinese to English
The Specs on the box are quite telling.

DJI Mavic 2
THe Mavic Air will have a compact/foldable design like the Pro and Platinum

The Mavic Air will sport a whopping 32 MP camera. Wow. Why so many pixels? DJI has two reasons for this. First, DJI is clearly positioning the Mavic Air as the first drone in the consumer lineup with “zoom”. We suspect they will tout 2X zoom, which will actually be a digital crop. By cropping a 32 MP sensor by a factor of 2 you can still end up with an 8 MP image. Here is how we know DJI is interested in digital zoom.

Digital zoom Mavic Air
DJI’s Twitter campaign to get digitally cropped images from users. The Mavic Air will be able to do this better than any other DJI drone due to the 32 MP sensor.

DJI is asking pilots to send in pictures taken from a drone along with a cropped version of that picture with the hashtag #AdventureUnfolds. Clearly, they are getting ready to promote this capability of the Mavic Air.

DJI Mavic air digital roll
The gimbal on the Spark can only rotate 20-25 degrees. The Mavic Air can easily do that digitally.

The Mavic Air will also include some significant image stabilization. Unlike the Spark, the Mavic Air will actually be able to fly fast while capturing fully stabilized images. That despite the fact that it only has a 1 or 2 axis gimbal. It turns out that 4K is just about 8 MP. So, the Mavic Air can still record 4K but with significant image stabilization which will counteract jitter as well as roll and pitch of the drone.

DJI mavic air digital image rotation of 42 degrees
The cropped 4K video could be rotated over 40 degrees and still stay within the sensor size.

Mavic Air Pricing

The Mavic Air looks like it will be an awesome entry-level drone that has almost no competition. We expect the price to start at $599 with a remote control, while the Fly More Package will be $799 and will include another battery and a weather-resistant backpack.

More January Announcements

As we mentioned before, DJI announced the Tello at the CES conference in early January. We already know a lot about DJI’s smallest quad, you can learn more in our Tello article. Or see how it stacks up to DJI’s previous smallest drone, the Spark. On January 23 we expect more details and an announcement about the release date of the Tello.

Other Upcoming DJI Drones

If you want to learn more about some of the other DJI drones on the way click on the links below. We’ve done our research on the Mavic Pro 2 as well as the tiny Tello.

Learn more about the Mavic Pro 2 Here.

Mavic 2 Mavic SE
The DJI Mavic Pro 2 looks to be an awesome quadcopter.

Learn more about the DJI Tello Here.

Tello vs Spark
The Tello is a smaller drone than the DJI Spark.

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Learn More…

If you want to learn more about taking great pictures or flying FPV then check out our comprehensive guides on those topics. Also take a look at our articles on how to choose the right drone for great aerial photos or for getting started flying race drones. Learn more about drones and how to get the most out of them in our Drone Academy. In the Academy we also detail some of the advanced testing we do, including our recent addition, drone thrust testing.
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