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DJI Mini 2 vs Air 2 (2021): Which Drone Is Better For You?

The DJI Mini 2 is finally here, the latest addition to the company’s popular line of compact folding quadcopter drones. It’s a little pricier than the first-generation Mavic Mini but that’s justified by its more impressive camera, more capable motors, and more reliable remote control connection. However, does that mean it’s the better choice over the powerful and well-loved DJI Mavic Air 2? To help you answer that question, here’s an in-depth comparison of the two models that covers their design, performance, and additional features.

DJI Mini 2 vs Air 2 Comparison Chart

ModelDJI Mini 2DJI Air 2
 DJI Mini 2 Fly More Combo – Ultralight Foldable Drone, 3-Axis Gimbal with 4K Camera, 12MP Photos,...DJI Mavic Air 2 Fly More Combo - Drone Quadcopter UAV with 48MP Camera 4K Video 8K Hyperlapse 1/2'...
PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
Dimensions Folded: 138×81×58 mm
Unfolded: 159×203×56 mm
Folded:
180×97×74 mm
Unfolded:
183×253×77 mm
Weight249g570g
Maximum Flight Time31 minutes34 minutes
Wind Resistance37.8km/h37.8km/h
Maximum Speed57.6km/h64km/h
Transmission SystemOcuSync 2.0OcuSync 2.0
Video Transmission Range10km10km
Gimbal3-axis gimbal system3-axis gimbal system
Camera Sensor1/2.3” CMOS
Effective Pixels: 12 MP
1/2″ CMOS
Effective Pixels: 12 MP and 48 MP
Maximum Video Resolution4K at 30fps4K at 60fps

Design

The DJI Air 2 is bigger and heavier than the DJI Mini 2.

DJI Mini 2 vs Air 2 design
The DJI Mini 2 (left) weighs in at 249g while the Air 2 (right) clocks in at 570g.

The DJI Mini 2 is the company’s smallest drone to date, weighing in at only 249g. This means that if you’re flying in the US, you don’t need to have it registered as it fits within the 250g weight limit. This makes it the perfect model for those who are new to the world of drones and want something easy and hassle-free to start flying with. When it comes to portability, you’ll have no problems bringing the Mini 2 around with you. It turns into the size of a palm once folded so you can easily stuff it into your travel bag.

As for the DJI Air 2, it’s more than double the weight of the Mini 2, clocking in at 570g. Size-wise, this puts it in the middle of the Mini 2 and the Mavic 2 Zoom. Thanks to its larger and more robust design, DJI has been able to equip it with more advanced features without having to bring up the price too much. While it doesn’t score as high as the Mini 2 in terms of portability, you shouldn’t have too much trouble packing it along with your other belongings. Once folded, it becomes the size of a big smartphone.

Weight and dimensions aside, the Mini 2 and the Air 2 actually look pretty similar, both sporting DJI’s trademark matte, light gray finish.

Camera and Gimbal

The DJI Air 2 has more advanced camera specs than the DJI Mini 2.

DJI Mini 2 vs Air 2 camera
Both the DJI Mini 2 (left) and the Air 2 (right) have a stabilized 3-axis gimbal system.

As mentioned, the DJI Mini 2 got an improved version of the original Mavic Mini’s camera. With this upgrade, the Mini 2 is able to shoot 4K videos at 30fps as well as capture 12MP images in both DNG raw format and jpeg. In addition to its ability to shoot in 4K, the Mini 2 also has 4x digital zoom, a feature you can access if you’re recording in 1080p. These specs are more than enough for beginners and amateurs who want to stay within a budget yet enjoy high-quality results. Professionals, however, will probably find the Mini 2 too limiting and should probably look at more high-end models.

As for the DJI Air 2, not only can it shoot in 4K but it can do so at 60fps. In addition, it boasts of a 1/2 CMOS sensor which allows it to capture 48MP images. This is a significant step-up from what the Mini 2 can do. In addition, you also get more formatting options with the Air 2, able to shoot in DNG raw format, jpeg, MOV, and MP4. These specs make the Air 2 ideal for semi-professional users who are willing to shell out more money for better quality photos and videos.

When it comes to gimbals, the Mini 2 and the Air 2 sport the same stabilized 3-axis system which helps you achieve smooth footage sans any shaking.

Flight Capabilities

The DJI Air 2 has a more powerful flight performance than the DJI Mini 2.

DJI Mini 2 vs Air 2 flight
The DJI Air 2 (right) can fly in-10° weather while the Mini 2 (left) can’t go below0°.

As a way to make up for the original Mavic Mini’s shortcomings, the DJI Mini 2 has been given a bunch of upgrades to improve its flight performance. For starters, it has an increased 10km range as well as a total flight time of 31 minutes. This means that you don’t have to worry about losing juice mid-flight or going beyond video transmission range and can instead focus on capturing the shots you want. Also, don’t let its size fool you because the Mini 2 can take up to 37.8km/h of wind and can fly as fast as 57.6km/h. To top things off, it’s equipped with the new and improved OcuSync 2.0 which is able to manage interference well and ensure a stable connection at all times.

The DJI Air 2 has the same range, transmission system, and wind resistance as the Mini 2 but that’s where their similarities end. With the Air 2, you get to enjoy a faster flying speed of 64km/h as well as a longer total flight time of 34 minutes. The biggest edge that the Air 2 has over the Mini 2, however, would have to be its ability to fly for a longer time in cold environments at a much faster speed. In addition, the Air 2 is capable of flying in -10° weather while the Mini 2 can’t handle anything below 0°. So if you’re into shooting snowscapes, the Air 2 is the much better drone companion for you.

Intelligent Flight Modes

The DJI Air 2 has more complex intelligent flight modes than the DJI Mini 2.

DJI Mini 2 vs Air 2 modes
The DJI Air 2’s intelligent modes are geared more towards tracking and filming.

If you’re new to flying, the DJI Mini 2 has a couple of intelligent flight modes to help you operate your drone safely. The Smart Return to Home mode, for example, initiates the takeoff as well as the return to its starting point. The QuickShot modes are helpful as well, allowing you to shoot exciting footage with a single press of a button. This includes modes like the Dronie, Boomerang, Rocket, and Circle, all of which are useful for creating content for social media.

As for the DJI Air 2, its intelligent flight modes are more advanced and are geared more towards tracking and filming. The Point of Interest and ActiveTrack 3.0 modes, for example, are there to help you keep an eye on your subject during a flight while the Spotlight 2.0 mode keeps the subject in focus at all times. Hyperlapse is another useful mode you can enjoy with the Air 2, able to capture creative shots sans the need for any editing after.

Verdict

The DJI Air 2 is for semi-professionals while the DJI Mini 2 is for beginners and amateurs.

It’s pretty clear that DJI Mavic Air 2 is the more capable drone in this comparison. It has more impressive camera specs, it’s a much more powerful and adaptable flyer, and it’s equipped with far more advanced modes that prove to be very helpful for capturing footage. This makes the Air 2 a good match for semi-professional photographers and videographers who are willing to spend more for their craft.

While the DJI Mini 2 isn’t as impressive on paper, this doesn’t mean that it’s a bad drone. It just means that it caters to a different group of people. If you’re new to the world of drones and are trying to stick to a budget, then the Mini 2 will serve you very well.

FAQs

📌 What is the DJI Mini 2’s weight?

The DJI Mini 2 is the smallest and lightest out of all of DJI’s drones, weighing in at only 249g.This means that if you’re flying in the US, you don’t need to have it registered as it fits within the 250g weight limit.

📌 What is the DJI Mini 2’s wind resistance?

The DJI Mini 2 may be small but it can take up to 37.8km/h of wind and can fly as fast as 57.6km/h.

📌 How does the DJI Mini 2’s two-way charging hub work?

The DJI Mini 2’s two-way charging hub can charge up to three batteries at once. It can also be used as a powerbank to charge other devices.

📌 Which one should you buy, the DJI Mini 2 or the DJI Air 2?

If you’re a semi-professional who’s willing to spend more for your craft, go for the DJI Air 2. But if you’re a beginner who wants an affordable way to start flying, you’re better off with the DJI Mini 2.

Last update on 2021-07-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Denise Jose

Senior Editor at Compare Before Buying. Researcher and yoga teacher passionate about article writing, photography, wellness, and mindfulness.