When comparing the current drones that are available on the market, to the ones available just a few short years ago, the advancement in technology is not hard to see. Although there have been many steps taken in this evolution, one of the keys to this success, is the quality of the Drone Cameras, such as the DJI Mavic Pro and DJI Phantom Pro 4. The success of these two particular drones can be seen both in sales figures and perhaps more importantly, in first-hand accounts and user reviews. If you are in the market for a camera drone to extend your aerial shooting practice but are stuck when deciding between these two high-achievers, hopefully, this guide will make your decision a little easier. Let’s get to it!
It would be nice if this wasn’t an issue, but for most of us at least, the price of a piece of equipment is one of the most important determining factors when making a new purchase. Although there are various different kits available for each drone which makes an impact on the final price, the bottom line is, the DJI Phantom 4 Pro drone is more expensive than the DJI Mavic Pro. As with any hobby or profession, there are often extra accessories and purchases necessary to get the most out of Drone photography, so if you wish to keep your initial purchase within a lower budget, the DJI Mavic Pro is the best choice.
As we noted in the previous section, the DJI Phantom 4 Pro is a dearer piece of equipment; so the next question is, what do we get for our money? Both cameras offer recording in 4K resolution, but the Phantom 4 Pro does so at 60fps and with a larger 1-inch sensor. In short, the DJI Phantom 4 Pro is a better performer than the Mavic Pro, so it is the right choice if you put a premium on image quality. It is also a heavier drone, due to its magnesium alloy build, which results to a greater level of stability in the air, which we will delve into a little more further down the track.
Both the DJI Phantom 4 Pro and Mavic Pro are attractive looking drones, with ergonomic, well-thought-out designs. That being said, the Mavic Pro is notable for being a remarkably compact drone, which has an effect on flying characteristics, which we will discuss in more detail a little later on, and makes for a much more compact travelling option. The best camera is always the camera that you have with you, so if this portability is going to lead to you using your drone more often, the Mavic Pro has the upper hand in this regard.
Ease of use
Both the DJI Mavic Pro and the Phantom 4 Pro offer advanced functionalities, which are more attuned to the enthusiast user than the beginner. Keeping that in mind, we find the smartphone-based operation of the DJI Mavic Pro a little trickier to master, than the dedicated controller styled operation of the Phantom 4 Pro. Operating the Mavic Pro requires you to download an app, connect your phone to a control, and use your phone’s screen to make any necessary flight moves and setting adjustments. The Phantom 4 Pro uses its own dedicated controller, which has a much larger screen than your smartphone, making it easier to view and make these changes. As well as the benefit of not having to set up, and work of your phone, we find the overall approach of the Phantom 4 Pro’s controls more beneficial to the enthusiast drone user.
Previously we mentioned the size differences of the DJI Mavic Pro and Phantom 4 Pro, now it is time to see how these differences affect performance. The compact stature of the Mavic Pro lends itself to indoor flying, where it is a much more versatile performer than the larger Phantom 4 Pro. Outdoors, both Drones are excellent performers but the larger size and broader propellers of the Phantom 4 Pro leads it to being a more stable flyer. In perfect conditions, both drones will fly similarly but if there is wind about, the Phantom 4 Pro is less likely to be pushed around.
Both the DJI Mavic Pro and Phantom 4 Pro offer lengthy flight times of 27 minutes and 30 minutes respectively. This 3 minute different may not sound like much to the average user, but for the diehard flyer, every minute counts! It is worth noting that this extra three minutes of flying time allows the Phantom 4 Pro to cover up to 14.4km as opposed to the 13km of the Mavic Pro, which is a significant difference if you are looking to put yourself in the best position to capture all of the action.
For many users, the final decider over which drone they choose will be the output quality. Both the DJI Phantom 4 Pro and the Mavic Pro are capable of capturing excellent video and still image quality, and with either of these drones in the sky, you are going to be pleased with the scoping views they bring back to you. However, the clear winner if we are talking about picture quality is the Phantom 4 Pro. Both cameras provide 4K resolution Video, but the Phantom 4 Pro does so at 60fps rather than 30fps, and it captures this video with a much larger 1-inch CMOS sensor. This larger sensor also has an enhanced resolution of 20MP, compared to the Mavic Pro’s 12MP, which leads to better quality still images.
As you can plainly see in this comparison, both the DJI Mavic Pro and Phantom 4 Pro are very capable drone cameras, with each being more suited to a specific type of user, rather than one being an overwhelmingly better purchase. The Phantom 4 Pro can produce better quality videos and stills, but it does so at a higher price point and in a larger package. Conversely, the Mavic Pro is a more compact unit that is ideal for travel and for indoor flight, but it is not quite as stable for outdoor usage as its heavier sibling is. Hopefully, you can pinpoint exactly what you want from your drone, and using this guide, make your choice accordingly. You’re able to purchase both the DJI Mavic Pro at Ted’s Cameras, as well as the DJI Phantom 4 Pro. One thing is for sure, whichever drone you choose, you will not be disappointed with either of these products from DJI.