I bought the DJI Mavic 3 Pro for my June Iceland trip because I knew strong Icelandic winds and hard-to-reach destinations might not be feasible with the DJI Mini 3 Pro (which I also have). And my assumptions were correct for a couple of locations I wanted to drone.
Now, I’ll admit off the top; I’m not heavy into technical details or intricate details. I’m a landscape photographer who wants to nail the shot. So if you’re coming because you want the nitty-gritty details, this might not be the place. But if you’re looking for a straightforward, honest assessment of how the DJI Mavic 3 Pro operates and what it’s like with the 7x (166mm zoom lens), you’re in the right place!
Before diving in, make sure to change your file settings from JPEG to RAW before you fly. The first time I launched, I didn’t realize until I was flying back and had to redo some shots.
Let’s Review the DJI Mavic 3 Pro
First things first, with the DJI Mavic 3 Pro
DJI Mavic 3 Pro Review: It’s a Powerhouse
The Mavic 3 Pro is a badass drone that will enable you to create magic. With a long flight time, killer zoom lens, and the ability to fly in pretty steady wind, few things will stop you from landing the shot.
Additionally, it can fly much faster than the DJI Mini 3 Pro (22mph vs. ten mph when in normal mode). This is a big difference if you’re trying to get the drone out to an area or tracking something.
Lastly, I felt way more in control when flying the DJI Mavic 3 Pro. It hovers almost perfectly (the Mini 3 Pro can drift if there’s slight wind), easing anxiety if you’re in an area with nearby obstacles.
The DJI Mavic 3 Pro costs $2,199 with the DJI RC, and that goes up to $2,999 with the Fly More Combo, $3,889 with the DJI RC Pro, and then $4,799 with Cine Mode.
Understandably, this is pretty pricy compared to the other drones available on the market. But you get a beast of a drone with this price and one that should last you for years. Additionally, this is not geared toward hobbyists. This is for people who are professionally adjacent and will use it to supplement their photography or other business ventures.
Main DJI Mavic 3 Pro Review: Photography Specs
- Hasselblad Main Camera with a 4/3 CMOS sensor, 24mm format equivalent, f/2.8-f/11, 20 MP. The Hasselblad 4K drone camera supports shooting RAW photos with a dynamic range of up to 12.8 stops.
- Medium Tele Camera – Mavic 3 Pro camera drone has a 1/1.3-inch CMOS, 70mm equivalent, 3x Optical Zoom, f/2.8, 48 MP; 1/2-inch CMOS Tele Camera 166mm equivalent, 7x Optical Zoom, 28x Hybrid Zoom, f/3.4, 12 MP.
- Omnidirectional Obstacle Sensing and APAS 5.0 – Mavic 3 Pro ensures you fly safely and create with peace of mind.
- 43-minute max flight time
- DJI O3+ – Mavic 3 Pro features a transmission distance of up to 15 km with stable signals, presenting a more coherent camera view.
Showing off the DJI Mavic 3 Pro Photo Quality
While the megapixels drop as you increase the zoom, the photo quality is still pretty damn good! For the normal zoom, the file size is 5272×3948. For the 3x zoom, it’s 4024×3016, and the 7x is 3992×2992.
The following three photos were all taken at the same places and show the power of this DJI Mavic 3 Pro zoom lens.
This is where you’ll shoot most of your photos with. It’s rock solid, and I loved the shots I’ve made.
The middle zone, where you’ll play around with it but maybe not use it a ton.
This is one you’ll likely use the least unless you’re in an area where you want some massive compression or zoom.
More Photos from the DJI Mavic 3 Pro
Under the midnight sun in Iceland, I tested the lowlight capabilities, though I didn’t boost the ISO too much (200 was my max) because I was still a bit anxious about how it would come out. These first few were taken between 11 pm and 1:30 am. Though, I did use bracketing on almost all of the shots.
Video Quality on the Mavic 3 Pro
The DJI Mavic 3 Pro shoots in 4k, which is phenomenal, but I haven’t loaded it into anything other than Instagram, so I can’t speak to how it looks on Youtube after it’s compressed on that platform. But on my desktop, it looks fantastic, so I’m sure it’ll look pretty damn good there.
FAQ: DJI Mavic 3 Pro Review
Do you need a drone license for DJI Mavic 3?
You do not need a license as a hobbyist or anyone not doing commercial work. But you do need to register your aircraft with the FAA. It costs $5 and is super easy to complete.
Can you fly a DJI drone without registering it?
If you’re wondering if you can physically fly it, then yes. But as noted above, you’re supposed to register it with the FAA beforehand. However, it will not be shot out of the sky or anything.
Should I get the DJI Fly More Combo?
Yes, you should. You’ll need more than one battery, and having the extra propellers is nice just in case something happens to it. I will note I remember in 2019, when I bought the Pro 2, they gave you quieter propellers. This was not the case for the DJI Mavic 3 Pro.
Furthermore, it comes with ND Filters. If you’ve never used these before, it’s not like using an ND filter on a camera. You have to pop off the one that is on the drone and add it in. It’s a bit scary, as mine didn’t want to come off easily.
Lastly, DJI Power Adapter is excellent for faster charging of your batteries, and you can even hook up another drone battery and kill two birds with one stone.
What is the difference between the DJI RC and the DJI RC Pro?
I had this same question, considering it’s an $800+ difference. This is all available on their separate websites, but I’ll compare the differences below.
I believe it all comes down to the Pro has a few more bells and whistles and is brighter. They do the same work in the end. One might be slightly better on technicalities. I’ve starred the differences.
- O3+ Video Transmission
- HD 1080p60fps live feed
- 390g weight
- 5.5 FHD Screen
- 4-hour battery life
- Brightness up to 700 nits
DJI RC Pro
- O3+ Video Transmission
- 2T4R high-gain antenna system**
- The average brightness of 1000 nits **
- Latest generation Processor (4x CPU performance, 7x improved GPU performance, 20% lower power consumption)**
- High-speed wifi downloads**
- DJI FPV-Inspired Design and control sticks for better precise maneuvering**
- Faster aircraft connectin/start**
- DJI RC Pro supports videos played at 4K/120fps in H.264 and H.265 codec**
- Plays Audio**
- You can download 3rd Party Apps like IG/FB and do live streaming via the DJI RC Pro**
In the end, those things might seem cool, but in my opinion, they are not worth the extra cash when it doesn’t change the DJI Mavic Pro 3 outcome except on the margins.
I found that the normal DJI RC controller gives me everything I need to take amazing photos. The only tie you’d need a super bright screen is mid-day, and I don’t do much of that.
Final Thoughts on the DJI Mavic 3 Pro Review
This drone is freaking awesome. The DJI Mavic 3 Pro provides everything you need to create high-quality, professional work. The only downside is it does not have a vertical camera, which would have been awesome to help with social media-styled video.
If you’re in the market for one, I hope this helped you out and gave you a little inspiration/nudge to make the purchase. (If you do, please use the links in this article, as I get a small commission.)
Until next time adventurers, take care and be safe.