The Mavic 3 is DJI’s latest and greatest flagship drone – one that aims to help cement the brand as the go-to name in the industry.
However, it got off to a bit of a shaky start. While the Mavic 3 did impress upon release, it was also missing some key features – such as ActiveTrack, QuickShots, MasterShots and Panorama Mode. DJI promised they were coming in future updates, but it was a strange decision to ship out a product that seemingly wasn’t quite finished.
Now, though, it’s a very different story. Massive firmware updates in the time since the Mavic 3’s release have brought with them the missing features and more.
So, is this the drone to beat? And who exactly is this the Mavic 3 for? Let’s find out.
The Mavic 3 is easy to use, packs down to a convenient size and produces an image that is second to none. Of course, there’s always room for improvements, but, as it stands, there simply isn’t a better drone available to consumers – especially now that all of the features are present in the current firmware.
Compared to its predecessor, the Mavic 3 is a step up in almost every regard. Increased battery life, superb stable flight, better tracking, refined accessories and a truly unmatched image. It’s top marks all around.
This product is more of a videographer’s tool than a consumer drone, so we do feel that majority of people would be better off with something more affordable and compact, like the Air 2S or Mini 2.
However, if you want the best image quality possible for content creation, movie-making or client work, this is as good as it gets.
The Mavic 3 is available in three distinct packages: the standard version, the Fly More Combo and the Cine Premium Combo. The Mavic 3 standard is the cheapest option, but it’s a fairly barebones kit that nets you the drone itself, the controller, one battery, some spares and the associated wires to get you up and running.
The option we’re testing is the Fly More Combo, which gives you two additional batteries, a charging hub, an ND filter set and a lovely carrying bag. We think this option will prove to be the most popular, as, without the additional batteries, you’ll struggle to get the most out of a flying session.
Finally, there is the Cine Premium Combo, and it comes with an eye-watering price tag. The Cine variant is really only going to appeal to those using the Mavic for professional work The main draw is the addition of ProRes HQ recording, and those who can benefit will already know it. To allow the recording of this exceptionally heavy codec, the Mavic 3 Cine comes with an onboard 1TB SSD, whereas the standard Mavic 3 relies on microSD card storage.
The Cine Premium Combo also includes the flashy RC Pro controller, which has its own screen and doesn’t rely on your smartphone for control. The RC Pro controller alone costs four figures, so it’s easy to see where that price tag is coming from.
One of the largest changes on the design side is the new muzzle style gimbal protector. It’s a little fiddly at first, but, once you get the hang of it, it’s an incredibly thoughtful and convenient way to store your drone.
Every propeller clips neatly into place, the sensors are covered, and the gimbal is secured from all angles – all with one convenient strap around the drone. This level of protection used to require multiple fiddly accessories, so we’re really glad to see this elegant new approach.
The carrying bag from the Fly More kit has impressed us, too. While DJI could have included a fairly cheap solution and not seen many complaints, we can tell some serious design went into this thing, and it feels durable enough to last a lifetime.