Skip to content
Home » DJI Mavic 3 – Is It Worth It?

DJI Mavic 3 – Is It Worth It?

In 2021, we watched as the best drone makers took the most advanced and advanced flying payloads and reduced their capabilities to fit for our footwear “sized” drones. December 2021 was the month that DJI announced the long-awaited Mavic 3 and Mavic 3 Cine that took this Hasselblad 4/3″ fully frame camera and putting it inside its foldable Mavic airframe that we are familiar with. Similar to thermal sensors, until now, you needed to buy the larger drone as well as a separate camera/payload to shoot video or photos using the 4-3/” fully-frame sensor.

We have gotten the chance to test one of the very first DJI Mavic 3 drones that will be sold to value-added resellers in the United States and have had the privilege of flying numerous times for testing as well as commercial reasons outdoors. In this review, I’ll try my best to provide the information both good and bad you should be aware of this new drone made by DJI.

M3 or M3 Cine

The M3 is precisely what we’ve been waiting for, but not even close enough to satisfy only a few. As soon as you take it out of its box, you’ll feel the improvement. The updated upper shell features “finger holds” that are softly engineered which mimic the aerodynamics found in manned aircraft , making it easy to transport to and from your launch location. Weighing just under 2 pounds the M3 is the lightest commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) drone to sport a 4/3″ Full Frame CMOS sensor.

The guards for gimbals that so many had to fight with, replaced by an easy-to-install guard that moves and “snaps” to stay in the right position. DJI has gone beyond the call of duty to safeguard the motors in the gimbal that ensure stability to take commercial photos and videos by locking the camera when the drone is turned off.

With the latest and improved multidirectional obstacle-sensing safety system , the M3 is equipped with new obstacle detection cameras that make the competitors appear sloppy and unstable when trying to follow subjects or keep them straight and level during an inspection of assets.

Both both the M3 along with M3 Cine models M3 Cine leverage the same camera and body of the aircraft. Its Mavic 3 comes with the standard remote, and external hard drive that is 8GB. Similarly. the M3 Cine comes with a smart controller, 1TB internal hard drive as well as the ability to record ProRes Apple format.

M3 Battery

DJI is following in the footsteps of other companies and keeping its passengers in the air longer thanks to the drone to fly for more than 30 minutes. The company claims the possibility of up to 45 minutes of flying time as well as 40 minutes hover time without wind, and with only one battery. After several test flights conducted at The Nine Ten Drones training facility located in Fayetteville, NC we have recorded an average flight time of 36 minutes flying , and 35 minutes of hovering in low-wind. In all of our test flights , we took the M3 battery off to 5percent or less, which we would not advise anyone to regularly.

35-36 minutes of flight time, contrasted with other drones currently available, is becoming standard and what drone pilots can expect from drones for business and professional use. The time to charge one battery when using a the standard power source of a home outlet supply is typically about 60 minutes.

Batteries for an additional M3 as well as the M3 Cine will be $209.

M3 Remotes

If you’re not aware, DJI users are perturbed over the decision to make M3 as the M3 standard and fly using an N1 remote controller that uses Occusync 2.0 which is available in mini 2 as well as Air2 models. Mini 2 and Air2 drones but is not built into the cross-compatibility with DJI’s original DJI Smart Controller that uses Occusync 2.0.

DJI had launched its OG Smart Controller with a idea that the single remote would work with drones for a long time to be. We purchased one of the smart controllers that we wanted to go to our Mavic 2 Pro as we believed that it could be compatible with the Mavic/Phantom 2 Pro that was coming out and not just as a result of wanting to pair it with the Mavic junior or mini drone. This massive failure was noticed by users of commercial, government and recreational operators as well.

The M3 Cine combination comes with the DJI RC Pro Smart Controller that was introduced previously alongside Air 2S. Air 2S in the first second quarter of 2021. Its RC Pro boasts a 5.5″ 1080p screen with an average brightness at 1000 nits. It’s disappointing that DJI launches the model of smart controller, however it only changes the method of transmission in order to extend the the range, which was already over the limits of what Part 107 regulations will allow.

The market needs bigger and more powerful UAS remote controllers at the moment and DJI will only give us more of the same , while increasing the cost to $5,000.

The remotes in the end have an ergonomic design and work well, but I would have expected more from DJI as well as other companies that also had similar experiences. DJI probably didn’t have the parts for this OG Smart Controller but had an excess inventory of N1 remotes, and had identified new materials for the RC PRO. ….. and the “Remote Recycling Ring” the saga continues.

Dual Camera M3 Specifications

Hasselblad L2D-20c

4/3″ CMOS Image Sensor
20MP Image Capture
An Adjustable Lens: f/2.8-f/11
8 stops of dynamic range
Record as high as 5.1K Video
Vision Detection Auto Focus Technology

Tele Camera (“Explore Mode”)

1/2″ CMOS Sensor
12MP Image Capture
28x Hybrid Zoom
Fixed Aperture f/4.4

Flying the M3

Mavic 3 Mavic 3 is flown using the DJI Fly application that was initially launched alongside Mavic Mini. Mavic Mini. It certainly caused a stir as people started to ask questions about the reason DJI released an “commercial” drone on the market, which is controlled with an app designed for small recreational drones. Over the three months I’ve had Mavic 3 Mavic 3 I have zero complaints about the performance or capability in this app. DJI Fly app.

If you’re new to the world of with drones and you’re using a Mini 2, Air 2S or M3 is the first drone that you fly and you don’t be aware of how far the field has progressed since. If you want to save yourself some time and locate the neighborhood Facebook Drone Club and ask any of its members to Fly their Phantom 2/3 and Mavic Pro.

I’m not planning to get into the fancy, intelligent flight modes because the majority of times I operate manually except when conducting an automatic mapping project with DroneDeploy to capture precise images. Certain, the flight modes that are intelligent can be useful for videography and are used mainly in the realm of video production or by those who are keen to showcase the superior autonomy that the drone they purchased is capable of.

The M3 is comfortable, responsive, and operates like an automobile. In the event that you think that the Mavic 2 Pro is a Nimbus 2000 then the M3 is definitely an Firebolt and even more. In the event that both Mavic 2 Pro and the Mavic 2 Zoom met one other and “made” the M3 drone, the new drone would be called the M3.

This is crucial – Do you remember when the drone would detect an obstacle and stop. Then, you’d have manually “find” the safest route which would allow you to get your drone around the obstruction? Many people would think “It would be amazing to have the drone fly around the obstruction” but they don’t have a idea how difficult that is. Now we are at the point that drones are doing this. The drones are able to recognize obstacles and navigate over them regardless of the direction they are “pushing with the sticks”. This helps to avoid obstacles when flying for fun, inspecting or mapping/modeling , but it is an issue for those who produce video. There’s nothing more annoying than nailing a shot only to get Artificial Intelligence jerk you off course due to something that wasn’t an obstacle to collision. Professionals are turning their wheel off of their training, turning off obstacle detection and relying on the input of the operator and their awareness to hit the shot.

Take a look at the M3 flying through the North Carolina snow and notice the AI “calculating” the best direction for the future:

The M3 starts up quickly (has the brand new DJI start tone) and can fly within seconds, thanks to the enhancements on its GPS system. The capability to rapidly launch the M3 is beneficial to anyone who is operating in rapid responses (Fire/Police) and those who require fast “turnarounds” during the swap of batteries (Mapping/Modeling).

The speed of response from the M3 is amazing, with no lag when remote inputs are received The aircraft rises and yaws with ease, and without “jumps”, “skips” or delays. The M3 provides 3 “flight speeds” that can be controlled using the remote controller that is paired. The three modes are Normal, Cinema and Sport. The M3 being in “Sport” mode dramatically increases the sensitivity of controls and places the obstacle detection, avoidance and detection accountability on the user. The remote can be set to Cinema mode will place virtual wheels of training on your drone, which control the speed of the drone in all directions.

Sport mode is perfect to show off and fly the drone over trees while family and family members watch, taking footage of huge landscapes, or tracking swiftly moving objects outside.

Cinema mode is great for assist inspections using an “inspection camera” or indoor flight operations or using your drone as though it were a camera mounted using a costly tripod, and generally to enhance the operator’s ability to fly with precision.

The M3’s night flight is an absolute blast, and for professional entrepreneurs with small businesses , this device will be a major improvement for your business. So, say goodbye to the night of not being able to record any worthwhile footage using the Mavic 2 or Phantom 4 Pro and welcome crisp, clear video captured using the 4/3″ full-frame sensor of the M3. There is no way to be able to take over Hollywood in the near future with the M3 all by itself. For instance, I’m aware that the GlideAerials team GlideAerials is extremely excited to replace the Mavic 2 Pro with the M3 because of the better camera, the increased flight time , and better flight performance, but they’re not planning to throw out their Inspire 2’s anytime soon.

Take a look at the M3 night flight that is available at Harrah’s Casino Resort in Cherokee, NC:

For UAS professionals seeking the best drone to aid in asset inspection and management, The M3 is a cost-effective option that can replace the Mavic 2, Phantom 4 or other outdated drones that have helped you start off. With the M3, you’ll be able to be mapping or modeling on a Monday or Thursday, gathering data for GIS/Planning, and on Wednesday you will be out checking bridges, structures or equipment in dangerous areas.

Watch the M3 perform an asset inspection on an emergency communications tower for public safety.

The Mavic 3 is the smoothest commercially-flying off-the-shelf drone I’ve experienced to the present. DJI is back and delivering yet another top quality product at a reasonable price considering the performance and capabilities that it provides.

Mapping and 3D Modeling

The images you take using Mavic 3’s camera Mavic 3 can be turned into high-resolution 2D models and maps using photogrammetry software that you are currently using but you’ll need to take the photos manually in the moment. SkyeBrowse, DroneDeploy and/or Pix4D are all expected to integrate the Mavic 3 into their software in the next 3 to 6 months.

Mavic 3 Mavic 3 will produce a super high resolution model or map even when it is 400 feet above the ground level(AGL) because of its four-third” CMOS sensor that will provide high-quality images with it’s 20 million effective pixels. While it is confirmed that the Mavic 3 is available to fly using it’s “Big 3” mapping softwares, there’s no information available currently. Nine Ten Drones did manually take a number of pictures that we then processed into a map as well as a 3D model.

It is crucial to remember this: Mavic 3 Hasselblad camera Mavic 3 Hasselblad camera has an electronic (“rolling”) shutter which means that once you turn on the CMOS sensor is switched “On” it scans line-by-line sequentially that results in a distortion of the shutter that is rolling. It is believed the DroneDeploy, Pix4D and SkyeBrowse each compensate for this distortion by making post-processing adjustments to their software. Based on my experience of mapping using both electronic and mechanical shutters, the effect is minimal except when you are modeling and mapping for high-precision surveying goals.

M3 Cine is worth the investment $$$?

If Apple ProRes is a requirement to meet your videography requirements then you must choose Mavic 3 Cine. Mavic 3 Cine model. Alongside being compatible with the Apple video format, the “Cine” comes with an internal 1TB drive which will be required to handle the larger file size of 5.1k Apple ProRes video.

The last upgrade included with”Cine “Cine” that is almost worth the price of $5k is the inclusion of RC Pro (V2 Smart Controller). Enterprise and professional drone users need an appropriate remote to meet the requirements and requirements of their job and not an RC car controller that needs a cell phone to succeed.

Keep in mind that Mavic 3 Cine Mavic 3 Cine is not intended for play or pleasure. It’s a tool for professionals which can earn six-figure incomes for many organizations and individuals around the world, and producing a large return on investment.

M3 Pricing Breakdown

Mavic 3 Standard Mavic 3 Standard $2,199.00

Mavic 3 Aircraft
Remote Controller N1
Intelligent Flight Battery
Battery Charger
Spare Propeller Pair
Charger/Device Cables

Mavic 3 Fly Combo $2,999.00

Mavic 3 Aircraft
Remote Controller N1
Intelligent Flight Battery x 3
ND Filters (4/8/16/32)
Charging Hub
Battery Charger
Spare Propeller Set x4
Charger/Device Cables
Convertible Carrying Bag

Mavic 3 Cine Premium Combo – $4,999.00

Mavic 3 Aircraft (1TB Internal SSD)
Remote Controller Pro (5.5″ Screen)
Intelligent Flight Battery x 3
ND Filter Set (4/8/16/32)
ND Filter Set (64,128,256,512)
Charging Hub
Battery Charger
Spare Propeller Two 4
Charger/Device Cables
10Gbps Lightspeed Data Cable
Convertible Carrying Bag

Mavic 3 Remote Controller Pro (5.5″ Screen) Mavic 3 Remote Controller Pro (5.5″ Screen) $1,199.00

Mavic 3 Intelligent Battery – $209.00

DJI Mavic 3 Review Summary

It is recommended to purchase Mavic 3 Mavic 3 if you are looking for the top “Proprise” (Professional or Enterprise) drone available today that does not have features for thermal imagery. The Swiss Army knife drone can perform inspections of assets, locate people missing person(s) as well as suspect(s) and take pictures of million-dollar homes, record the most memorable wedding, and map a complicated construction site, and many other things.