In most respects, the Mavic Mini is both a shrunken down version of the Mavic Air -- thanks to its folding legs that allow for a more compact shape when transporting -- and a replacement for the aging entry-level Spark. The tiny drone weighs in at a mere 249 grams, which is just 1 gram shy of the FAA-mandated 250-gram limit when registration is required.
Giving that Mavic Mini serves as flying photography platform, we should mention that the camera uses a 1/2.3-inch sensor that is capable of taking 12MP images. It can also capture 2.7K video at 30fps, or 1080p video at 60fps. If you want 4K shooting capabilities, you will need to upgrade to the larger Mavic drones. The camera is mounted on a three-axis motorized gimbal to stabilize your footage, which is an upgrade from the two-axis gimbal on the Spark.
Despite its small stature, the Mavic Mini is still packed full of technology and software features, as you would expect from DJI. The company has incorporated dual flying modes to appease both beginner and experienced drone pilots. And there are also a number of creative shooting modes like CineSmooth (which smoothes out footage) and QuickShots (which can take your drone through preprogrammed maneuvers).
As for the all-important spec of battery life, DJI is quoting that you should be able to stay aloft for up to 30 minutes if you go easy on the "gas".
“To design a drone as lightweight, compact yet capable as Mavic Mini was one of the most challenging projects we’ve ever tackled at DJI,” said Roger Luo, President, DJI. “Distilling top-of-the-line features into a palm-of-your-hand drone is the culmination of years of work, and we are ecstatic to bring a new class of drone to the DJI lineup. Mavic Mini’s long flight time, ultra-light weight and high-quality camera makes it DJI’s everyday drone – and most importantly, it’s easy to fly, no matter your experience level with drones.”
The DJI Mavic Mini will be available with a starting price of $399, and that includes the drone, the controller, one battery, and a set of extra propellers. However, stepping up to the $499 "Fly More" bundle gets you the drone, the controller, three batteries, a charging hub, three sets of extra propellers, propeller guards, and a carrying case. Preorders are open now, and the Mavic Mini begins shipments on November 11th.