When it comes to camera drones, it often feels like there’s only one name in town: DJI. With around 75 percent market share, the Chinese company’s main competitor is itself, but if the new DJI Mavic 3 is anything to go by, there’s been little in the way of laurel-resting going on over in Shenzhen.
The top-level features here are the redesigned battery, which can supply a whopping 46 minutes of flight time on one charge (the Mavic 2 Pro’s battery did 31 minutes max), and the Hasselblad-branded camera, which has a 4/3 CMOS sensor of the type you might find in a mirrorless camera and a 28x hybrid zoom (the Mavic 2 Pro had a 1in sensor). Both of these are big, exciting improvements over what has come before in a foldable, portable drone, and they open up a lot of creative opportunities for aerial content creation.
The camera is actually a dual camera with two lenses: a 24mm prime and a 162mm tele len with 28x hybrid zoom (which means it combines optical and digital zoom tech). It offers an adjustable aperture and 12.8 stops of dynamic range, and can shoot 20MP stills in 12-bit RAW or videos at 5.1K/50fps and 4K/120fps. The larger size of the sensor (4/3 is about twice the size of 1in) should mean excellent performance in low light – an area where drones often disappoint.
The Mavic 3 also offers omnidirectional obstacle detection, 15km transmission range and all the flight safety features and failsafes you’d expect from a flagship DJI drone.
It’s available to order now in three packages: just the drone for £1,879; a Fly More Combo including three batteries, one battery charging hub, a carrying bag and a set of ND filters (£2,549); and the Cine Premium Combo, which features a modified version of the drone with 1TB SSD, Apple ProRes 422 HQ video recording, an RC Pro controller, a carrying bag, three batteries and a hub and two sets of ND filters (£4,279).
Look out for our in-depth review of the DJI Mavic 3 very soon.