DJI Air 2S Review: Excellent Outcomes With out the Work

DJI Air 2S Review: Excellent outcomes with out the work

MSRP $999.00

“When high quality and efficiency are precedence, you will not discover something higher than the DJI Air 2S.”


  • Captures sharp pictures
  • Robust particulars from its 5.4K video
  • Professional degree clips with Mastershots
  • Enjoyable and protected to fly


  • Digital camera can generally hunt for focus

One leisurely exercise that saved me sane in the course of the lockdown final 12 months was flying the DJI Mavic Air 2. It had every thing you’d need in a drone, whether or not you have been a first-time flyer or a seasoned pilot. Now, although, it appears to be like like DJI is taking a web page out of Apple’s playbook by releasing an upgraded model of its drone a 12 months after its launch.

I had only a few qualms in regards to the Mavic Air 2 after I examined it out final 12 months, it was nearly good in each method. Enter the DJI Air 2S, a barely beefed-up model that’s most notable for the upgraded camera sensor it’s packing alongside for the trip, which clearly places it very near Mavic Professional territory — the corporate’s prime of the road shopper drones. How significantly better does it get? Learn on to search out out.

Bigger 1-inch sensor isn’t any joke

On the planet of cameras, one solution to improve efficiency is to introduce a bigger sensor. That’s precisely what DJI brings to the Air 2S and it’s with out query probably the most notable new high quality in regards to the drone. The brand new 20-megapixel 1-inch sensor with 2.4um sized pixels isn’t any joke, upping its predecessor’s half-inch sensor. With the bigger sensor on board, it’s in a position to attract in additional gentle to show extra particulars — particularly within the shadows, the place noise historically is most obvious.


Images from the camera come out crisp and sharp, which is what you’d anticipate from a bigger sensor. Capturing pictures round sundown time has generally proved difficult as a result of small-sized sensors (just like the one within the DJI Mini 2) aren’t geared up to deal with low gentle, however that’s no downside right here. The truth is, I used my photograph modifying software program to bump up the shadows in a few of my sundown pictures — and I’m comfortable to report that there’s no main proof of noise.

After all, the most effective outcomes are captured when it’s sunny out, however what makes the DJI Air 2S useful is that it doesn’t matter what, it may possibly take gorgeous pictures with out the necessity to edit them afterward. Simply as earlier than, there’s a “SMART” photograph mode that capabilities primarily because the drone’s HDR mode. It’ll snap a picture and routinely regulate the shadows and highlights to convey out the most effective particulars, so that you get a high-quality shot the primary time round.

The standard is what you’d anticipate: It’s excellent.

Over on the video facet, there are a number of new additions that push the brink in a route that gives creators but extra utility in publish. On prime of your conventional 4K at 60 frames per second (fps) seize, the DJI Air 2S ups the ante by providing 5.4K seize at as much as 30 fps. This, naturally, gives a few helpful tips — like having the ability to use digital zoom as much as 6x when recording in 1080p, in addition to cropping in publish for pans and zooms.

dji air 2s review image sample 1 of 4John Velasco / Digital Traits

dji air 2s review image sample 2 of 4John Velasco / Digital Traits

dji air 2s review image sample 3 of 4John Velasco / Digital Traits

dji air 2s review image sample 4 ofJohn Velasco / Digital Traits

The standard is what you’d anticipate: It’s excellent. Particulars are loads, colours exhibit a refined saturated tone, and there’s a good diploma of dynamic vary to assist draw out particulars in highlights and shadows which are in any other case misplaced. Nevertheless, I did discover that the camera can generally generally tend to hunt for focus — so switching to handbook mode could also be mandatory at occasions. What’s lacking in my take a look at was an choice for HDR video mode, one thing I relished utilizing with the Mavic Air 2. I’m assuming it’s coming in a future replace, however what it might imply is a correctly uncovered video that appears nice to start with.

Transferring as much as a bigger sensor is strictly what this iterative replace wants to differentiate itself in DJI’s lineup. The issue that’s introduced right here, although, is that the Air 2S diminishes the Mavic Professional line’s status for being the drone for professionals.

Even safer to fly

Whether or not you’re simply beginning out, or a seasoned professional with quite a few hours of flight time, the DJI Air 2S is even safer to fly than its predecessor. Probably the most notable characteristic right here is the addition of upward-facing sensors on the drone itself, which dietary supplements the prevailing different three (ahead, backward, and downward) to make it a safer flight total. The brand new upward-facing sensors are helpful when leveraging the drone’s upgraded APAS 4.0 tech to keep away from obstacles in its flight path. It’s showcased greatest when utilizing the brand new ActiveTrack 4.0 monitoring characteristic that enables the drone to intelligently observe a topic/object whereas avoiding obstacles.


You’ll get some slick-looking footage thanks to those new security options, primarily as a result of you possibly can management the Air 2S to observe a topic round with out the fear of it hitting one thing. Now, I attempted this out with somebody strolling very nonetheless by means of a subject and it safely navigated round poles and indicators.

In my years of piloting drones, I by no means actually got here throughout a detailed name. To start with, the DJI Air 2S is greeted with the identical OcuSync 3.0 technology launched with the current DJI FPV drone. Which means, the video transmission feed from the drone now extends to 12km — a rise over the Mavic Air 2’s vary of 10 km. Nevertheless, I did expertise one occasion when the transmission briefly minimize off, so I ended up simply having to restart the app. After a firmware replace, although, the video feed didn’t minimize out once more.

The Air 2S could make a novice seem like a professional.

Throughout one other take a look at flight, one in every of my worst fears about flying a drone occurred. By some means the distant’s connection to the drone was severed and the drone hovered excessive up within the air for a few minute. In my panic, I did try and restart the app within the hope it might set up a connection, however it didn’t. Fortunately, the Air 2S’ security protocol kicked in, which concerned the drone flying routinely near the utmost 400 ft top, then continuing to return residence all by itself. Finally, it landed all by itself and shut off, in order that disaster was averted. This expertise is strictly proof of why it’s one of many most secure drones to fly.

Professional creation with out being a professional

Years of flying have given me the expertise to seize gorgeous pictures and video, all achieved with handbook operation. However what makes the DJI Air 2S particular, very like the opposite drones in its portfolio, is that you just don’t must be a professional to acquire high-quality footage. Because of the varied Quickshot modes, all you actually need to do is simply select your topic within the body and the drone does the remaining. The entire earlier Quickshot modes are again once more, like Circle, Dronie, and Asteroid that makes the Air 2S fly away from a topic, then proceeds to seize a tiny planet.


The newest addition is MasterShots, a brand new mode that takes a few of DJI’s well-liked Quickshot modes and produces professionally stitched clips routinely — all with none bodily interplay piloting the drone. When you select your topic/location, the DJI Air 2S will then routinely set predefined flight paths to seize the entire clips it wants. The top result’s a brief clip that appears like an expert piloted and edited the video. This new automation reveals precisely why the Air 2S could make a novice seem like a professional.

Minimal compromise

Not surprisingly, DJI selected to recycle the design of its well-liked drone, so there aren’t any main variations between the Air 2S and Mavic Air 2. It nonetheless folds up for simple journey, however even higher is the truth that it makes use of the identical batteries because the Mavic Air 2. For anybody making the improve, it’s good to know that they’ll nonetheless use their previous batteries.


Talking of batteries, the general flight time with the DJI Air 2S has been minimize all the way down to 31 minutes — versus 34 minutes with the Mavic Air 2. It’s not an issue actually, however the compromise was made so as to account for the bigger camera sensor and the drone’s barely heavier weight of 595 grams. It might probably nonetheless obtain a most velocity of round 42.5 miles per hour (mph) in sport mode.

Our take

Who is aware of if this would be the pattern going ahead with DJI, however the Air 2S has all of the upgrades in making it a significant improve over the Mavic Air 2. Pricing begins at $999 for the Air 2S, however I like to recommend forking over the additional cash to snag the Fly Extra Combo model for $1,299, which comes with ND filters, a carrying case, two further batteries, and a multi-charger.

Simply as earlier than, the DJI Air 2S proves itself as being the most effective all-around drone. From its crisp video efficiency to all of its security options, it’s the drone to beat. Rookies will take pleasure in how simply it may possibly produce high-quality footage with minimal interplay, whereas seasoned professionals will relish the improved efficiency from its bigger sensor.

Do you have to improve?

It is a powerful one to reply. DJI will proceed to promote the Mavic Air 2 alongside the Air 2S, so the distinction between the 2 is a mere $100. Whereas there are actually strong the reason why the Air 2S is the superior drone, it’s nonetheless powerful to justify yet one more buy for current Mavic Air 2 house owners. If picture high quality is paramount, then it’s clearly definitely worth the improve. For those who don’t thoughts modifying footage, you possibly can nonetheless obtain gorgeous pictures and movies with the Mavic Air 2.

Alternatively, in the event you’re mulling over a DJI Mini 2 for instance, there’s no comparability as a result of the additional cash you’d hand over to purchase the DJI Air 2S is justified by the evening and day distinction with regards to efficiency, high quality, and security.

How lengthy will it final?

The DJI Air 2S is solidly constructed throughout and has a one-year restricted guarantee that covers defects. Moreover, you should buy the DJI Care Refresh prolonged guarantee for the Air 2S, which might cowl it for unintended damages. Taking into account the price of the drone, it’s value getting.

Is there a greater different?

Usually, the subsequent logical different could be one thing within the DJI Mavic Professional sequence — just like the Mavic 2 Professional. That’s not the case as a result of the brand new upgrades to the DJI Air 2S put it squarely into the identical class of being the flagship mannequin within the firm’s portfolio.

Do you have to purchase it?

Sure, you gained’t discover a higher drone for the cash. The entire upgrades make it a standout mannequin on the earth of drones by balancing efficiency, security options, usability, and worth.

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