DJI Mavic Pro vs Mavic Pro 2.0 (Zoom): The New Cameras Are Insane

If you are looking for a kickass drone then the Mavic Pro 2.0 is probably the best on the market. 

But, it comes at a bit of a price increase over the old Mavic Pro. But then again, that is always the way with new tech!

What the Mavic 2.0 does offer though is way better specs (flight time, image quality) and some cool new features too.

Is it worth the extra 500+ though? Let's find out...

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DETAILS

MAVIC PRO 2.0

  • 31 minutes flight time
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    45 mph top speed
  • All directions sensors
  • Hasselblad Camera with 20 Megapixels
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    New: Hyperlapse, 10 Shot HDR, Can Shoot Upwards (45 deg)

MAVIC PRO 2.0 ZOOM

  • 31 minutes flight time
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    45 mph top speed
  • All directions sensors
  • Hasselblad Camera with 2x Zoom & 12 Megapixels
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    New: Zoom, Hyperlapse, 10 Shot HDR, Can Shoot Upwards (30 degrees)
DJI Mavic Pro

MAVIC PRO (1.0)

  • 26 minutes flight time
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    40 mph max speed
  • Front & Down sensors only
  • DJI Camera with 12 Megapixels

DJI Mavic Pro 2.0 & Zoom

DJI just launched the Mavic Pro 2.0 after a long wait by their fans.

They are known for upping their game on every drone release and this one does not disappoint.

  • 31 minutes fly time
  • 45 mph / 72 km/hr
  • Full 6 direction sensors (vs 2 on the Mavic 1.0)
  • weighs 2 lb / 900 grams
  • size: 8.4 x 3.6 x 3.3 inches / 214×91×84 mm (folded
  • 20 & 12 (with zoom) Megapixel cameras 
  • Both do 4K and 1080p
  • Improve 3-axis gimbal

So, what is all the fuss about? Have things really improved since the Mavic Pro and the Platinum?

Well, they certainly have. But it kind of depends on what is important to you in a drone.

Let me explain.

dji mavic pro 2 cameras

DJI Mavic Pro 2.0 Hasselblad Cameras

The Mavic Pro 2.0 vs Zoom

The Cameras Are The Difference

In a lot of ways, it's all about the new cameras. And you need to understand that the Mavic Pro 2.0 and Zoom are quite different in this area.

Mavic Pro 2.0 Camera & Image Sensor

If you have not heard about Hasselblad, they are a Swedish company that makes super-high quality cameras. Most of us have not heard of them because they are very specialised.

DJI is using their cameras on the Mavic Pro 2.0 and this means the images and possibilities are going to be way better. They combine it with a 1 inch, 20 Megapixel sensor compared to a 2/3 inch on the Zoom and old Mavic Pro (with only 12 Megapixels).

This camera is not only way better quality (color range, dynamic range etc) with a lot more pixels to play with but also features a variable aperture (f/2.8-f/11). This means you can adjust both the light and amount of the shot in focus (depth of field), which is a huge bonus for photographers and videographers who want control over how things look. 

Mavic Pro 2.0 ZOOM Camera & Image Sensor

The Mavic Pro 2.0 Zoom model is all about the Zoom. It comes with a 24-48mm camera that gives you 2x optical zoom. Apart from attaching a camera to a super expensive DJI Inspire, I don't know of another consumer level drone that has zoom.

This means you can get closer shots without having to re-adjust the drone's position. Or, you can get a cool Hollywood effect called the Dolly-zoom, which is often used in scenes where someone is shocked or scared. The background suddenly moves away from the person, but they stay still. 

The sensor size is still the same as the Mavic Pro 1.0 though. However, I expect some minor improvements were made overall.

Video Is Affected Too

All Mavic Pros have 4K video but obviously the Pro 2.0 has the better sensor, so you may be able to see an improvement in quality. This also comes with a slightly better ISO range (up to 6400 vs 3200 on the zoom) and a few more color profiles which help with the dynamic range.

However, the big other difference for videographers comes from the flexibility of the zoom lens on the Zoom version, which previously was not an option.

So, for me, it seems the difference comes down to how and what you shoot. The Pro 2.0 has the better camera with improved quality. Whereas the zoom has, well, a 2x zoom, which gives you flexibility in terms of the shots you can get.

It's a shame you can't have both!

The Mavic Pro 2.0 also has slightly better bit rate for video (100 Mbit/s vs 60Mbit/s on the Pro 1.0) which makes for a smoother video overall. And, it uses H.265 (instead of H.264 on the Mavic Pro 1.0) which has 50% more information in the final product.

mavic pro 2.0 - faster quieter further

The Mavic Pro 2.0 (& Zoom) vs Mavic Pro 1.0
Features & Specs

Extra Range & Speed (And Quieter)

If having your drone run out of battery is annoying for you (and let's face it, it annoys us all having to land and swap the battery out). then the Mavic 2.0 will impress with it's 31 minutes max flight time. This is about a 20% improvement!

The redesigned body and improved aerodynamics also mean it can a bit faster with a max speed of 45 mph, which is about a 10% improvement. Although quite honestly, most drone owners including myself are rarely worried about max speed - unless you are racing or trying to follow cars? I never do either.

The Mavic Pro Platinum introduced new motors and blades to help reduce the noise of the drone (which we all know annoys our neighbours!). So, it's also nice to see that the Mavic Pro 2.0 is even quieter. Although DJI has not given any specs on how much...yet.

Mavic Pro 2.0 collision sensors

Collision Sensors

When I first started using my Mavic Pro last year it was very easy to put it in situations where it hit something. Fly in a straight line near some trees and a branch could easily poke out and take you drone down.

Same goes for above and behind. The Mavic Pro 1.0 lacked anything but forward and downward collision sensors.

The Mavic Pro 2.0 has upped the specs significantly and added 6 directions of protection. So, if you watch their video you will see the drone navigate some gnarly obstacles. Whether this is easily done in reality, I doubt it, but what is true is that you now have an insane amount of protection - in all directions!

Mavic Pro 1.0 vs 2.0 & Zoom Gimbals

Camera Gimbal

The Mavic Pro 1.0 gimbal is amazing. It can steady almost any shot while the drone is flying. Watching the video after I had first taken the drone out for a spin was amazing.

However, it is a very flimsy and unprotected piece of hardware. It is attached by a thin cable to the body. It dangles down and looks like it is about to fall off at any moment. Sure, it won't, but compared to later drones from DJI (Spark, Mavic Air) you can tell it is something they wish they had done better.

Now they have.

The new Mavic Pro 2.0 has a far more robust and overall protected gimbal/camera system than ever before. A huge bonus if you ask me.

AND, on top of this they have solved another big problem. You cannot shoot up with the old Mavic Pro.

Now, you can also shoot upwards to about 30 degrees, as well as down to 90 as before (i.e. straight down).

Mavic Pro 2.0 Active Track

Mavic Pro 2.0 Active Track Improvements

New & Improved Shooting Features (Video & Photo)

One of the coolest things each new drone from DJI comes with is new shooting features.

The Mavic Pro 1.0 had tonnes of options like Tripod, Active Track, Point of Interest (circles something), and they added Helix, Dronie and Rocket later on.

The Spark had all the cool ninja hand gestures where you could also control the drone with gestures. But these are not something that they have added to the Mavic Pro range.

With the Mavic Pro 2.0 they have added:

Hyperlapse: This is basically a Timelapse mode where you move the camera. Which is ideal for a drone because it moves :> You have 4 options - Free (you control) Circle (around something), Waypoint (pre-programmed), and Course Lock (stays on a given course/direction).

HDR: The problem with cameras is that they cannot do what our eye can. They lack the ability to capture very dark and very light at the same time. You can fix this by taking multiple shots of the same scene and then combining them - this is HDR and the Mavic 2.0 now has this built in with up to 13EV and 14EV dynamic range on the Zoom and Pro 2.0 respectively. Quite impressive!

Hyperlight: A new low-light setting for the Mavic Pro 2.0 to help shoot in darker situations.

Active Tracking 2.0 (Improved): Active Tracking on the Mavic Pro 1.0 was good, but it had a whole lot of issues. It would get stuck if it faced an obstacle. So, when I tried it with my mountain bike near trees, it did not do much. It also cannot predict where you are going.

The Mavic Pro 2.0 has used the new sensors it has to massively improve the obstacle avoidance, which is crucial for active track. It can also predict based on the road/path where the track is going even if you go in a tunnel. The improved speed also helps it keep up with fast moving vehicles and it can more easily detect objects it needs to track.

PanoramasThese days with panoramas on your phone being so easy, it's a shame not to have it on your drone, right? Well, now you can. Mavic Pro 2.0 does 180 degree (vertical/horizontal) as well as Sphere, which is a cool 3D kind of effect.

Zoom's 9 Photo Panorama: Taking the Panorama a little further, the Zoom model can also stitch 9 photos together into a 48 Megapixel zoom without you even lifting a finger.

Mavic Pro 2.0 Controller open
Mavic Pro 2.0 Controller Closed

Mavic Pro 2.0 New Remote With Sticks Hidden Inside When Closed

Improved Remote Control & Ocusync 2.0

Ok, so the Mavic Pro 1.0 was pretty impressive in terms of its usability with the remote and the distance it could go (up to 7km / 4.3 miles). Sure, it would lose connection to the remote if you pushed things too far or got blocked by something significant, but all in all you can fly a long way.

DJI have pushed this limit to 8km / 5 miles now and have improved the remote control transmission as well. Before, using Ocusync 1.0 you would get a very crisp 720p view on your phone or tablet. As awesome as that was, DJI decided they would improve it to 1080p on the Mavic 2.0! They have also improved latency down to 120ms (from 150-160) which of course means a better viewing experience for the drone controller.

Storing and transporting the remove was also a bit of a pain in the behind with the Mavic 1.0. You could even by some protectors for the sticks. The remote folded down nicely, but the sticks always poked up like an unwanted friend!

Since the Mavic Air, DJI have figured out how to remove and store the sticks inside the folded up drone. This feature is now on the Mavic Pro 2.0! See the images above.


Which Mavic Pro Is Right For You?

There are some amazing improvements on the Mavic Pro 2.0, but it comes with a price increase. So, you have to decide which of the features you want/need the most.

Size and Weight​

The collapsable Mavic Pros are super portable but of course none can beat the Mavic Air if portability is your main priority. The Mavic Pro 2.0 is also a little larger and heavier (2lbs vs 1.6 lbs), which is about the only downside to this upgrade.

Camera

The camera is one of the biggest upgrades, but you have to choose. Way better images/videos with the Mavic Pro 2.0, or a very nice 2x optical zoom on the Zoom model.

The 2.0 also comes with better aperture control and video quality (compression and bitrate).

However, the Mavic 1,0 already had a 12MP sensor taking super crisp still images and 4K video. So, unless you plan on shooting top-end videos, maybe you don't need it?

Obstacle Avoidance & Gimbal

As someone who has "almost" crashed my drone a few times because of the lack of "all around" sensors on the Mavic Pro 1.0, I love that they now have them on 6 side on the 2.0.

This is a huge benefit and will save your drone many times over. Sure, it's also a great idea to buy DJI Care Refresh to really protect yourself, but sooner or later you will probably crash your drone no matter how careful you are. And having more ways to NOT do that is awesome.

For me this is one of the biggest reasons to get the Mavic Pro 2.0.

The Gimbal improvements also help protect your drone, and they have also given you a 30 degree upward view which was something the Mavic 1.0 really missed.

Flight Time & Max Distance

Yes, both have improved by about 10-20%. But for most people this is not a big deal. Unless you are racing or chasing cars, the speed is irrelevant. And the max distance is techically not usable anyway because you are supposed to keep the drone in line of sight (according to most country's laws). So, you should never be 5 miles away. However, if they are important to you, the upgrade on the 2.0 is obviously nice to have.

Flying Features

This is probably not a deal break for most people, but there are some nice features on the 2.0 with the way better active tracking and new hyperlapse modes. These kinds of features might not be used on every flight, but they give you shots that can take weeks to otherwise perfect.

So, if you are lazy like me, they are an amazing addition to the drone.

Price​

Any new tech is always going to come at a premium, so you are looking at a few hundred more for each model upgrade (1.0 vs zoom vs 2.0).

You can see the current prices in your region below:

About the Author Roger Timbrook

Roger is a little obsessed with travel. He has been to over 40 countries, broken 3 suitcases and owned over 10 backpacks in 12 months. What he doesn't know about travel, ain't worth knowing!

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