DJI has released an updated version of its ultra-lightweight drone, the Mavic Mini. It's essentially the same small-sized drone but with an improved flying time of 31 minutes on a charge, and a video transmission range (how far you can fly the drone away from yourself) of 6.2 miles, up from 2.5 miles on the original. It's said to withstand stronger winds of up to 24 mph.
Stay stealthy — Miniature drones like the Mavic Mini are great for beginners because they're small enough that owners don't need to register with the FAA, a requirement for larger craft put in place because too many people were flying into restricted airspace. Any aircraft weighing more than 250 grams must be registered — conveniently, the Mavic Mini weighs just 249 grams including its folding rotors.
Besides the increased flight time and range, the Mini 2 supports 4K video at 30 fps, along with image capture in JPEG and RAW from its 12-megapixel 1/2.3-inch sensor. A new Trimmed Download feature can send shortened clips wirelessly to your phone.
Good for all types — The Mavic Mini 2 costs $450, an attractive price compared to other drones like the full-sized Mavic 2 priced at $1,600. That makes the Mini 2 a good drone for beginners who want to dip their toes in and see if drone flying is for them without shelling out a grand for one. But it still has higher-end features that experienced flyers will appreciate.
You could even buy the original Mini now, perhaps used at a lower price. If you don't think you'll have the desire or confidence to fly your drone out of visual range, the original Mini's 2.5 miles of video transmission should be good enough.
The Mavic Mini 2 is available on DJI's website, and a bundle with three batteries, a charge hub, a carrying case, a remote controller, and the Mini 2 will cost you $600.