When the DJI Mavic Air 2 released in 2021, it was met with a lot of positivity since it offers powerful specs and performance for a consumer drone. A year later, the company released its successor—the Air 2S—and it comes with some major upgrades, with the most significant one being its larger 1-inch sensor. So what other differences are there? Below is our comparison of the two.
DJI Mavic Air 2 vs Air 2S Comparison Chart
The DJI Mavic Air 2 and Air 2S have similar designs, but the latter is just a tiny bit heavier.
In terms of overall design and form factor, the DJI Mavic Air 2 and Air 2S are practically identical. They have the same measurements when unfolded, but the former is a bit taller taller when they are folded. This foldable design gives them excellent portability.
The Air 2S is a bit heavier, though, weighing 595 grams to the 570 grams of the Mavic Air 2. This increase in weight actually gives the Air 2S a slight advantage when in flight during windy conditions as it can be more stable. Since these drones are heavier than 250 grams, they will need to be registered first before use.
As for aesthetics, the only noticeable differences are the markings on their bodies and the color accents on their propellers. Other than those, they have similar looks. One major upgrade that the Air 2S has over the Mavic Air 2 is the inclusion of additional proximity sensors. With this, the Air 2S can avoid obstacles more effectively while in flight.
The larger camera sensor of the DJI Air 2S allows it to shoot in 5.4K resolution and have more detailed images than the DJI Mavic Air 2.
The biggest upgrade that the DJI Air 2S comes with is its camera sensor. The DJI Mavic Air 2 has a half inch CMOS sensor capable of taking photos with a resolution of 48MP. In contrast, the Air 2S comes with a 1-inch CMOS sensor which is double that of its predecessor. Although the resolution dropped to 20MP, it is still quite capable of taking excellent still images thanks mainly to its Quad Bayer sensor. Many photographers will always take a bigger camera sensor over a higher resolution, and if you’re one of them, the Air 2S is definitely an upgrade in that area.
With its larger sensor, the DJI Air 2S unsurprisingly outperforms the Mavic Air 2 when it comes to video quality. It’s capable of shooting videos up to 5.4K but only at 30fps, while the max resolution for the Mavic Air 2 is 4K. Aside from having a higher video resolution capability, the Air 2S also has a higher video bitrate of 150Mbps compared to the 120Mbps of the Mavic Air 2. This results in more detailed and sharper videos, and it lends to less image quality deterioration when editing.
The DJI Air 2S comes with upgraded obstacle sensing and transmission system.
One noteworthy feature that you only get with the DJI Air 2S is MasterShots. This feature allows you to capture cinematic clips without much effort because most of the process is automated. MasterShots combines around 10 to 15 automatic flight routes that are flown in sequence while it focuses on the subject. Afterwards, it automatically creates edited video clips with filters, transitions and music from a choice of over 20 templates.
The DJI Air 2S also has improved obstacle sensing. With the Advanced Pilot Assistance Systems 4.0, it has four-directional sensing and can avoid obstacles even at high speeds. If you are not the best pilot, you can now focus more on your shots instead of worrying about environmental hazards as the drone will automatically do that for you. In comparison, the Mavic Air 2 only has three-directional sensing.
Transmission is also improved, with the Air 2S using the DJI O3 (rebranded OcuSync 3.0). It has four antennas and the transmission range is upped to 12km with a 1080p feed. In comparison, the Mavic Air 2 uses DJI’s older OcuSync 2.0 that has two antennas and a shorter range of 10km.
The older DJI Mavic Air 2 has a slightly longer battery life than the DJI Air 2S.
One area where the DJI Air 2S is downgraded is in battery life. It has a max flight time of 31 minutes, which is down from the 34 minutes of the Mavic Air 2S. Both are not great in this area and bottom line is that the two are quite disappointing, but the Mavic Air 2S is slightly better.
If budget is a major concern, the DJI Mavic Air 2 is still a worthwhile purchase, however, if you can spare the money, you’ll get a much better experience with the Air 2S.
For a lot of people, especially those working with a budget, the DJI Mavic Air 2 is a perfectly fine consumer-grade drone. While it’s not as powerful as its successor, it can still take excellent quality photos and shoot cinematic videos with ease. However, if you want the better overall experience and higher quality photos with a lot of convenience features, it’s worth it to pay the price premium and get the upgraded DJI Air 2S.
The DJI Mavic Air 2 Fly More Combo comes with two extra intelligent flight batteries, three more pairs of low-noise propellers, an ND filters set, a battery charging hub, a battery to power bank adapter and a shoulder bag.
It weighs 570 grams.
Yes, they are equipped with the same battery but the additional weight and sensors of the Air 2S result in less flight time.
The Air 2S is clearly better than the Mavic Air 2 since it is the latter’s successor and it comes with a host of new features and upgrades. That said, the Mavic Air 2 is still a fine consumer-grade drone that’s worth considering, especially for those that have a tight budget.
Last update on 2022-08-08 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API