It might force me to communicate with nature unexpectedly, but I still want a new drone. DJI: The Mavic Air 2.
I am a video producer, looking beyond camera equipment is my starting line. But it wasn’t the compact design of the Mavic Air 2 that allowed me to put the body in a crossbody bag, or it was a slightly larger 1/2-inch Bayer Quad sensor that made me fall in love. Nor is it due to the slightly longer flight time, which is about 34 minutes, giving or receiving wind conditions, and which flight mode you choose.
That’s because of the autonomous AI.
DJI updated the autonomous AI feature set for Air 2. But what caught my attention was ActiveTrack 3.0 and Advanced Pilot Assist System 3.0 (in short APAS). Both of these features are designed to make tracking subjects very easy – no need to fly fancy. ActiveTrack locks onto a particular subject, which in the previous version loses its target if it moves behind an object, and APAS maps the drone environment to avoid obstacles in its flight path, which is said to be better than its predecessor.
I have spent some time with drones to see how good those features are, and all of you, these two features combine to make an autonomous drone that is pretty sweet. I’m a little conflicted. AI of course increases flying but also this is how we get it Terminator. But when I put Air 2 to work, cycling through Downtown Oakland while following me, it was easy to forget the potential of killing future bots chasing me in the apocalyptic desert and was only impressed by Air 2’s ability to avoid objects in complex environments. It handles the curves and turns of the city well. I also speed up a long way to see if this bad boy can keep up while avoiding some rather than complex obstacles.
But … I did have a few hiccups during the test. Ie Mavic Air 2 is not as smart as I thought; stuck in a tree during one of my trips. When I see Air 2 flying right into a tree – you can monitor the flight cam on your smartphone – I have to switch to the map on the DJI application and use the ping location to track it. Unfortunately, the ping is not very accurate; it’s similar to Google Map. So I still have to do some detective work to narrow down the number of trees where the tree is trapped. After I thought I found the tree where Water 2 was stuck, I had to leave all the rest of my equipment, including me. stupid expensive bikes, on the ground and climbing trees for 20 minutes. Bless it is the true tree. That can take longer.
This can happen to anyone – and I can bet the cash you have in the history of flying drones. But Air 2, which does not pay attention to objects that come face to face, occurs on several occasions in certain modes. I can tell you more, but this is very cinematic and I worked very hard on the video above, so look at this and also some sweet drone shots from me that are over my fixie, bruh.
Even with this accident, I still want Mavic Air 2, especially when I’m out on the field as a video producer. Having this in my repertoire would be a blessing if I was doing solo shoot, which is increasingly common now. If you’re not in the business of making videos it’s a little more difficult to justify the $ 800 price tag of Mavic Air 2 when the adorable and more affordable $ 400 Mavic is there. But if you are looking for cinematic shots and don’t have time to learn how to fly Mavic Air 2 smart enough to make it valuable.