Tiny Drones Just Went Pro—Introducing the DJI Mini 3 Pro

DJI Mini 3 Pro
Credit: DJI
When it comes to drones and gimbals, DJI is the name to beat. With the new DJI Mini 3 Pro, that just got a little harder. 

The original DJI Mini-Series was an answer to creatives who wanted high-quality video in a smaller package than what the company already offered. 

Today, the Shenzhen-based company is updating its smallest drone line with the DJI Mini 3 Pro

But much like Apple, does adding the Pro badge to a product truly make it ready for professional use? Let’s find out together. 

The DJI Mini 3 Pro

While the tiniest drone in DJI’s lineup might seem like a slouch, it’s anything but. Even the Mini 2 was a robust unit that had ample flying time, great 4K video, and a solid feature set that made it an attractive option for creatives looking for drone footage.

DJI Mini 3 Pro Kit
DJI Mini 3 Pro KitCredit: DJI

The DJI Mini 3 Pro updates all of those features and more, all while keeping the weight around the same 250 grams, give or take. This all depends on the battery option and SD card you choose. 

Wait, did I say battery options?

Yes, the DJI Mini 3 Pro comes with two battery modules that will give you either a 34-minute or 47-minute flight time. However, those numbers may change with severe weather conditions.

DJI Mini 3 Pro battery options
Battery OptionsCredit: DJI

Now back to the updates. A redesigned shell cradles a new camera unit with a larger sensor at 1/1.3” compared to the 1/2.3” of the Mini 2. DJI has also increased the aperture to f/1.7 with an FOV of 82.1° even though the equivalent focal length remains at 24mm. You can even flip the camera 90° to produce true vertical footage, perfect for social media use. 

Video resolutions have been increased to 4K60p at a resolution of 3840 by 2160, and 120fps slow-motion has been added when in FHD mode. The Mini 2 could only top out at 60p across the board.

On top of that, ISO performance has been increased to a max of 6400.

DJI Mini 3 Pro New Camera
Credit: DJI

This is all baked into either an MP4 H.264 or MOV H.265 container with 4K, 2.7K, and FHD resolution options. 

But here’s the coolest update yet. The DJI Mini 3 Pro can shoot HDR in 4K up to 30fps and includes a flat color profile to increase how much you can push the image in post.

And photographers also got some love with this new update. According to the specs sheet, creatives can shoot 48 MP images in a 4:3 aspect ratio, with a resolution of 8064 by 6048.

DJI Mini 3 Pro Flat Color Profile
Flat Color ProfileCredit: DJI

It’s Smarter, Too

While the unit comes with larger propellers and a redesigned aerodynamic body, the powerful obstacle-sensing system introduces automation to your drone workflow. 

Tri-Directional Obstacle Sensing now offers forward, backward, and downward dual-vision sensors while the Advanced Pilot Assistance Systems or APAS 4.0 detects objects in real-time, keeping your flight path clean. This enhances obstacle avoidance and enhances safety, even in crazy environments. 

Unfortunately, APAS 4.0 is not available while recording 4K/48fps, 4K/50fps, 4K/60fps, 2.7K/48fps, 2.7K/50fps, 2.7K/60fps, and 1080p/120fps video. 

The Mini 3 Pro also includes multiple intelligent flight modes, such as FocusTrack and MasterShots. The latter was introduced in the DJI Air 2S and allows your drone to shoot sequences based on a pre-programmed flight path. DJI has also included Hyperlapse and Digital Zoom to really fill out your toolkit.

DJI Mini 3 Pro Obstacle Avoidance Sensors
Obstacle Avoidance SensorsCredit: DJI

New Drone, New Controller

With a new design, DJI will also release a new controller to justify the Pro badge. The DJI RC is a redesigned version of the DJI RC Pro and features a 5.5” built-in screen that tops out at 700 nits. 

You can finally use your phone to call your mom, dad, or significant other and tell them about your new drone instead of using it as a screen. 

While the DJI RC will only be available with the Mini 3 Pro, DJI may have plans to make it compatible with other drones in their lineup.

DJI RC-N1 and DJI RC
DJI RC-N1 and DJI RCCredit: DJI

We Want It, You Want It

The DJI Mini 3 Pro is currently available for preorder in a few different packages. But should you get it?

If you’re a first-time operator in the market for a drone, this should definitely be on your shortlist. We already have operators in our circle who are upgrading from the Mini 2. Since the unit is so light, you won’t need to register with the FAA—just please be careful where you fly this thing.

With the addition of HDR, a flat color profile, and an H.265 container, the DJI Mini 3 Pro is certainly living up to its professional moniker. 

DJI has also been killing the drone game, and we’re excited to see how this new update to its Mini series performs in the field.      

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1 Comment

To my knowledge, D-Cinelike color is flat-ish but not log, and has excessive sharpening burnt in. Color is 8-bit (not 10-bit like the D-log on the Air 2S or Mavic 3). So, no it's not suitable for pro use, at least not in any context where IQ and post-prod are important, IMHO. This is clearly a software lock to avoid cannibalising sales of the higher-end drones. Pity, as here in Europe it would be extremely useful to circumvent the prohibitive and illogical laws that apply to drones over 250g. Maybe next time...

May 11, 2022 at 4:15AM

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Sam Gordon
Moving Picture Maker Man
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