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DJI Air 2S

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The DJI Air 2s is a nice upgrade for some, and a slight downgrade for others. One thing is for sure, it’s one of the best all-in-one folding camera drones you can get. Here’s what changed…

DJI Air 2S All-In-One Camera Drone
DJI Air 2S

DJI Air 2s Specs

  • Weight: 595 g
  • Dimensions (Unfolded): 7.2″ x 9.9″ x 3.0″ (183 x 253 x 77 mm) (LxWxH)
  • Dimensions (Folded): 7.1″ x 3.8″ x 3.0″ (180 x 97 x 77 mm) (LxWxH)
  • Max Speed: 42.5 mph (19 m/s)
  • Max Takeoff Altitude: 16,404 feet (5,000 m)
  • Battery Capacity: 3,500 mAh
  • Max Flight Time: 31 minutes
  • Max Video Transmission Distance: 7.4 miles (12 km)
  • Max Wind Speed Resistance: Level 5
  • Operating Temperature Range: 32° – 104° F (0° – 40° C)
  • GNSS: GPS + GLONASS + GALILEO
  • Internal Storage: 8 GB
  • Flight Modes: Cine, Normal, and Sport
  • Camera Sensor: 1/2″ CMOS Sensor; 20 MP
  • Camera Lenz: 88° FOV; f/2.8 Aperture;
  • Photography Modes:
    • Single 
    • Burst shot (continuous)
    • Auto Exposure Bracketing (AEB)
    • Timed (2/3/5/7/10/15/20/30/60 second increments)
    • SmartPhoto
    • HDR Panorama: Vertical, Wide-angle, 180°, and Sphere
    • JPEG/DNG (RAW)
  • Video Resolution: 5.4K and 4K Ultra HD; 2.7K; FHD (240 fps Max); 120Mbps; MP4/MOV
  • Automated Video Modes:
    • MasterShots
    • FocusTrack (Spotlight, ActiveTrack, and P.O.I.)
    • QuickShots
      • Circle
      • Boomerang
      • Rocket
      • Dronie
      • Rocket
      • Asteroid
  • Remote Controller: 2.4 GHz; 5.8 GHz; 6-hour battery; 1080p Live View

Pros

  • Best-in-class 5.4K Ultra HD video
  • ActiveTrack automated flight mode is greatly improved with the added sensors
  • Huge 1″ CMOS 20 MP sensor
  • 4x digital zoom @ 4K resolution
  • JPG + RAW dual image capture
  • Great 1080p live stream video quality with longer range and low latency (OcuSync 3.0)
  • Long max flight time (31 min)
  • GPS + GLONASS + GALILEO navigation and mapping
  • Great handling and UPGRADED obstacle avoidance with 4-directional sensing (APAS 4.0)
  • FocusTrack, Waypoint, and other automated flight modes
  • MasterShots with 20+ templates to create cinematic videos ready to share
  • Compact, folding design
  • 8GB of internal storage
DJI Air 2S 1080p Image Feed
DJI Air 2S | 1080p Image Feed

Cons

  • Worse battery life than the previous model (DJI Mavic Air 2)
  • Difficult to export Pano mode images
  • Not good range in urban areas
  • ActiveTrack STILL has issues staying focused on the subject and picking safe flight paths
  • MasterShots only available in 1080p max

Typical Tracking Issues

DJI Air 2S 5.4K Video Camera
DJI Air 2S | 5.4K Video Camera

     One thing that DJI still hasn’t fixed is the issues with FocusTrack staying locked on a target. To be honest, it’s way more accurate than previous Mavic Air models, though.

     On the other hand, it’s still frustrating when you’re trying to use it in wooded areas, steep elevation changes, and other areas where line-of-site is a problem. Instead of the visual target lock, it would be nice to also have some sort of physical beacon like the Skydio camera drone.

DJI Air 2S 4-Directional Obsticle Sensing
DJI Air 2S | 4-Directional Obsticle Sensing

More Sensors

     Even though the FocusTrack feature has a hard time keeping the DJI Air 2s locked on its target, the added sensors help a lot. That means that flying through congested areas just got a lot safer, too.

    Not only is the range and field of view improved on all of the sensors, but they added 2 up-facing sensors. Overall, the DJI Air 2S does an even better job at avoiding obstacles and staying with the shot.

     That’s why the features that benefit the most from this improvement are the FocusTrack and MasterShots.

Mavic Moments

     Forget about “Kodak Moments,” because with the upgraded camera it should be renamed “Mavic Moments.” Going from a 1/2″ CMOS sensor on the Mavic Air 2, to a full 1″ CMOS Sensor on the DJI Air 2s, it’s even suitable for more advanced commercial use.

     Boasting the best-in-class 5.4K video resolution and 4x zoom, your getting better closeups and more breathtaking scenic shots. They also made shooting video and sharing easier than ever with their new MasterShots feature.

DJI Air 2S MasterShots
DJI Air 2S | MasterShots

Quick MasterShots

     MasterShots take QuickShots to a new level. After you lock on to your target subject, you get to choose the approximate range and height of the shots. Then, the DJI Air 2S does the rest by capturing a 10-shot sequence in 1080p video. (Hopefully, they come with an upgrade to improve the video resolution for MasterShots mode.)

     After it’s done with all the shots, you get to select from 20+ video templates to find the best compilation of shots. You even get previews before you finalize it, so there’s no question that you picked the best cut.

     The finished product is a cinematic quality video complete with music and filters, that’s ready to share. The only thing left to do is post it for the world to see.

DJI Air 2S
DJI Air 2S

Conlusion

     The improvements from the first Mavic Air to the Air 2 were mostly upgrades to the aircraft, rather than the camera. On the DJI Air 2s, the major upgrades are on both sides.

     It was a bummer that they didn’t upgrade the battery, so you would get at least the same amount of flight time as the Air 2. On the other hand, losing 3 minutes of flight time in exchange for better photo and video quality is an easy trade.

     Some of that juice is also used on the additional sensors and improving the existing sensors, so manual and auto-pilot flying is far safer. What you get in the end is a smarter camera drone that lets you enjoy more of what you’re shooting.

DJI Mavic Air 2S Fly More Combo
DJI Mavic Air 2S Fly More Combo

DJI Smart Controller

     The DJI Smart Controller is around the same price the DJI Mavic Air 2 itself, so it may not seem practical. On the other hand, if you have (or plan to have) 2 or more drones that are OcuSync 2.0+ compatible, it’s worth the investment. 

     Besides the convenience of having a phone-free flying, you’ll also be able to fly all of your compatible drones with this one controller. Plus, there’s plenty of little luxuries, like auto-connect, VR compatibility, and detachable control sticks.

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  • Post last modified:October 6, 2021