The Mavic Pro has been ready for a refresh for a while now. Rather than simply replace it, DJI decided to release TWO new Mavic 2 models. Both the Mavic 2 Pro and Mavic 2 Zoom are excellent, game-changing drones. They share a lot in common but have two very different cameras. We were in NY with DJI for the release and got our hands on them a little earlier than most.
If you want to see how the original Mavic or the Mavic Platinum version stack up against the Mavic 2 Zoom or Mavic 2 Pro click on the link below.
|Original Mavic Pro vs the Mavic 2 Pro|
Which one is better? That isn’t an easy answer. Personally, I like the Zoom but Chris likes the Pro. Really there isn’t a wrong answer here. People are asking, “why didn’t DJI give us a 1-inch sensor and a zoom lens in a single drone”? That answer is actually pretty simple: It doesn’t fit. Zoom lenses are significantly larger than fixed or “prime” lenses.
Sensor size drives lens size, and scaling up the zoom by a factor of 2.3 just would not have fit on the Mavic’s small frame. (NOTE: The Phantom 5 will undoubtedly have a zoom lens option on a 1-inch sensor or maybe even larger.)
For now, you will need to decide which is right for you. (Or do what we did, and buy both). Do you want the Zoom or do you want a higher resolution larger sensor? The differences go a little deeper than that, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each model.
The Mavic 2 Specs
With the exception of the camera, these two drones are almost identical. They are both a little larger and heavier than the original Mavic checking in at 2 lbs. Both have an impressive 8000 meter (5 mile) range and utilize the brand new OccuSync 2.0 video transmission signal for crystal clear video. I was pleasantly surprised by how quiet the new Mavic 2 was. No, you aren’t going to sneak up on anyone, but it isn’t a loud attention grabber like our Phantom.
Both Mavic 2 models have an impressive 31 minute flight time and upgraded APAS 2.0 six-direction obstacle avoidance sensors. In sport mode, both Mavics will top out at 45 mph. The Mavics both retain all of the easy to use cinematic flight modes and have added new aerial time-lapse modes. The time-lapse photography is a spectacular addition.
Mavic 2 Pro vs Mavic 2 Zoom
The one thing that really sets these two models apart is the cameras. Both cameras are excellent but have different features. Of course, the price is also an important distinguishing feature. The Pro version is $200 more than the Zoom at $1449 and $1249 respectively.
The Mavic 2 Pro camera
The Mavic 2 Pro utilizes a Hasselblad L1D-20c camera with an impressive 1-inch 20-megapixel sensor. Like the name states, this version will appeal to professionals and anyone looking to get professional quality pictures and video. Hasselblad not only contributed to the design of the lenses, but they contributed their proprietary “Hasselblad Natural Colour Solution (HNCS) technology.”
We are excited about having a 1-inch sensor with improved dynamic range and new 10-bit color encoding (the original Mavic Pro used 8-bit). The Mavic Pro camera was certainly due for an upgrade, and DJI has pulled through. We are also super excited for the f/2.8 to f/11 aperture. The small f/11 aperture will provide the equivalent darkening of over ND 250, so you can leave your ND filters at home.
Mavic Zoom Camera
The Mavic Zoom camera may not have a 1-inch sensor, but that doesn’t mean it can’t take excellent pictures and video. With its upgraded 1/2.3″ sensor this camera is still an upgrade over the original Mavic camera. The Mavic Zoom as the name implies also incorporates the ability for the pilot to zoom in with lossless mechanical 2X zoom for photos and 4K video and lossless 4X zoom when recording in 1080p.
Zoom is a feature we have grown to love on our Parrot Anafi and we are pleased that DJI finally decided to get on board. While the zoom certainly can be fun for hobbyists, it also has some very practical applications for inspections and unique perspectives that you can’t get with a wider field of view. DJI touts the Mavic 2’s quiet props and zoom lens as an ideal flying camera for wildlife.
Like the Anafi, the Mavic 2 Zoom adds a Dolly Zoom mode. This one-of-a-kind mode zooms in on the subject while flying backward to keep the size of the subject unchanged as the background morphs. While the Anafi does a 3X digital zoom during dolly zoom, the Mavic 2 Zoom can do up to 4X composite zoom using both digital and optical zoom.
Is that it for the Mavic 2 Zoom? No. DJI also included a 48-megapixel “Super Resolution” photo mode that seamlessly stitches 9 high-resolution photos together that are taken zoomed in to create a single 24 mm equivalent picture that has crazy high resolution.
So Which One Is Better?
Again that really isn’t an easy answer. The question is, what is most important to you? If you need the best and most professional quality images possible then the Pro is the way to go. If you prefer the flexibility and creativity that comes with the Zoom then that is the way to go. Of course, the price is also important with the Pro being $1449 and the Zoom being $200 less at $1249. Good luck and happy flying. Just know that both are excellent and whichever one you choose it is hard to go wrong.
|Order a DJI Mavic 2 from DJI|
What Is the BEST Drone (for you)?
So what is the absolute best drone out there? That question isn’t as easy to answer as you’d think. BUT…for most people the answer is the DJI Mavic Air. It is portable, has an awesome camera and excellent flight modes. Learn more about the Mavic Air HERE.
What Drone Is the Best VALUE?
The best value on the market today has to be the DJI Spark. Now under $400, this little dynamo can do things that once upon a time cost over $1000. Learn more about the DJI Spark HERE. Still too much money for you? There are still some great options. Check out our list of the best drones under $200.
Want More Options?
Every month we update what we believe are the best drones on the market. Check out Best Drones Now. We have also created the one-of-a-kind Half Chrome Drone Cipher™. You answer a few questions and we’ll pair you with the best drone for you.
|Best Drones Now|
Do you want to search by price? Click on your menu above or we can break it down for you. Check out drones under $50, from $50-100, from $100-200, from $200-500 or over $500. Maybe you like a good Top Ten list, we’ve got you covered.
|Drones by Price|
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 drone thrust testing and camera quality testing.
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|Half Chrome YouTube Channel|
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