Mavic 2 Pro Tips And Tricks – Drones are amazing tools for photography and video from a completely different perspective. The new DJI Mavic 2 Pro packs a very powerful camera into a small, travel-friendly package.
It’s finally here! The perfect flying camera that a travel photographer like me has ever dreamed of. The drone is both small enough to fold into a camera backpack, yet powerful enough to capture high-quality photos and clean 4k video.
Mavic 2 Pro Tips And Tricks
With the new Mavic 2 Pro, DJI has pulled off the impossible, connecting a large 20mp, 1-inch Hasselblad camera sensor to an on-board drone full of high-tech sensors to avoid bumping into objects.
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I spent a week in Iceland flying the Mavic 2 Pro around the highlands, exploring beautiful canyons, running rivers and hiking in the mountains.
The Mavic 2 Pro is improved in every way over the original Mavic 1. The batteries are large, resulting in long travel times.
The engines are large which allows them to fly faster and stronger using strong winds. The gimbal is stronger, smoother and the whole drone is more powerful.
The Mavic 2 Pro comes equipped with a 1-inch professional camera, just like the larger Fantom 4 Pro, but it’s more than a pound lighter than the latter, and it packs down MUCH smaller, down to the size of a Nalgene water bottle.
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The sensors now look forward, backward, above, below and to the sides – improving the drone’s ability to avoid accidents.
With the release of the new Mavic, DJI decided to offer two different models. Mavic 2 Pro and Mavic 2 Zoom. Each has its own unique features and price, and it depends on your needs to decide which one is right for you.
The main difference between them is the Mavic 2 Zoom’s ability to “zoom” in real time. From 24mm at the wide end to 48mm (2X crop). This is a good sign for those who need it.
For example, getting close to tall buildings without wanting to fly right by them. Or approaching wild animals from a distance without scaring them.
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The zoom feature also allows for a cool effect called Dolly Zoom, popular in classic horror movies.
Although the Mavic 2 Pro does not have this ability to physically zoom the camera, it is more professional thanks to the beautiful Hasselblad camera, the ability to shoot in 10-bit and 4 large cameras.
This means the images it produces are of a higher quality and have better detail in low light. Plus, you can still produce some zoom effects in post-production if you’re shooting in 4K.
For me personally, having a high quality camera was more important than being able to zoom. That’s why the Mavic 2 Pro costs about $250 more than the Zoom.
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The DJI Mavic 2 Pro is even easier to fly than the last one, if you can believe it. The remote is more responsive and you might actually want to turn down the sensitivity because it responds so quickly to your input.
With more obstacle sensors than previous versions, you can fly with complete confidence that you won’t bump into anything!
Before you start flying for the first time, I always recommend watching the Mavic 2 tutorial videos here. Then, practice flying on a large field.
Sometimes drones feel like toys, but they really aren’t. These are expensive planes that can cause a lot of damage if you are not careful!
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The Mavic 2 Pro is equipped with a new Hasselblad camera with a large 1-inch sensor, giving it the ability to take amazing photos and videos.
This sensor is approximately 4X larger than the Mavic 2 Zoom. The Mavic 2 Pro can record 10-bit video, at a bit rate of 100 mb/s. Without getting too technical here, basically, it records a lot of information to produce high quality video and images.
The battery life of the DJI Mavic 2 has been improved, it can now fly for 31 minutes on a single charge (versus 24 minutes for the Mavic 1). However, in actual use, these times are high.
In my experience, the Mavic 2 Pro can fly for about 24 minutes before you can safely land it (the original Mavic had this quirk). I usually carry 2-3 batteries to maximize flight time at each location.
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It takes about 1.5 hours to charge these large batteries, and the charger itself now includes a built-in USB cable for the controller. Because it is permanently attached, you cannot lose it. Very useful!
If you’re looking to capture the most cinematic looking video, shooting in 4K at 24p will give you the best picture.
The Mavic can now record something called H.265, which is a new high-performance video codec. While this is certainly the future of video, H.264 is still too young for most computers to run.
. Basically, 4K HQ is a crop-closer 4K image on a 40mm frame. This can be good for separating subjects or compressing a large background to make it appear larger, such as tall mountains.
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I recommend that you set the white balance manually in the video, rather than having it on automatic, so that the white balance does not change during shooting.
If you don’t color your photos, the “normal” color profile works well. However, if you use color editing techniques or LUTs with software like Final Color, you need a flat color profile called
Another thing to remember is that under the “normal” camera format, the Mavic records in 8-bit. However, when using the D-LOG M format, it perfectly captures 10-bits (multiple colors possible).
But the D-LOG M image straight out of the camera looks very dirty (on purpose). You will need to restore color, contrast and sharpness using editing software later. For more information on color grading, click here.
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One of the coolest features of the Mavic 2 Pro for travel photographers is the ability to manually change the camera aperture to adjust focus/light.
In general, the focus of the camera lens can be soft with a wide aperture, such as F / 2.8. But they can be a bit softer if the aperture is closed all the way, at F/11.
I always try to keep the aperture between F/5.6 and F/8 for good sharp drone ground photography on the Mavic 2 Pro.
Of course, you can also shoot in RAW format with the Mavic, which helps preserve as much information as possible for flexibility in post-processing later.
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The Mavic 2 comes with all the usual smart flight modes, such as ‘Point of Interest’, ‘Cinematic’ and ‘Quick Shots’.
Tripod mode is no longer here, however, it has been moved to the side of the remote switch – a very nice change. Very fast access.
Quick Shots tells the drone to fly complex patterns that would be very difficult to do by yourself without a lot of flying experience, such as flying in a perfect circle while hovering and keeping the subject in frame.
Mavic 2 has a new and improved Active Track system that is very easy to use. It can identify multiple subjects (vehicles, people, etc.) and you simply click on the one you want to start tracking.
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Due to the increased number of sensors on the drone (there are 10 now), it is much better to navigate in tight spaces with obstacles above, below, on the sides, in front and behind it.
Active Song starts in “SAFE” mode, which slows down the speed, but you can turn this off. Just be aware that obstacle avoidance does not work at speeds above 26 mph.
NOTE: Side sensors are not always available. They only unlock in Active Track, Tripod Mode and Quick Shots.
The Mavic 2 comes equipped with a new Pilot Assist System (APAS) that uses camera sensors to automatically fly around obstacles rather than stopping in front of them.
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Previously, DJI drones stopped as soon as they encountered an obstacle, but the Mavic 2 is smart enough to find another way and continue flying.
The Mavic 2 has a new feature called “Hyperlapse”. Basically, it’s taking a cool time-lapse video from a drone, with little work on your part.
It does this by taking multiple pictures at a given time during flight. You can let the drone system cut the video itself, or choose to save still images, edit them and turn them into a time-lapse video later.
Just know that this process can take between 5 and 8 minutes for a 5 second video clip, so it will drain a good portion of your battery (around 30%).
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There are a few other differences between the Mavic 2 Pro and the original Mavic 1. The Mavic 2 now includes 8GB of internal storage, just in case you forget your memory card.
While the Mavic 2 Pro is about the same physical size as the Mavic 1, it weighs about half a pound due to its larger battery, additional sensors, and larger camera.
The new camera cover on the Mavic 2 now has a built-in gimbal clamp. There are few things to lose and it’s quick to set up/take down.
The DJI Mavic 2 remote control is great, it shows how to fly
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