05 November 2019 08:35

So this hiking trip turned into a long-distance drone flight for the DJI Mavic Mini.

DJI Mavic Mini long-distance range test.

Right, the DJI Mavic Mini long-distance range test. This mini-drone reaches 2.4 miles on WiFi, which is incredible. I was hoping for a day with less wind and I was also thinking of another location, but I went hiking today with my daughter at Breakneck mountain in New York along the Hudson River. I took the DJI Mavic Mini with me to try out some of the quick shots with two fully charged batteries. However, when we got to this vantage point and were looking down on the Hudson River and Pollepel Island there on the right-hand side, I figured why not give it a try and see how far we can fly this mini-drone.

So this hiking trip turned into a long-distance drone flight for the DJI Mavic Mini. DJI Mavic Mini long-distance range test proves mini-drone is legit I did turn the drone into the sports mode as it would give me a bit more power to overcome the headwind, and you'll see throughout the flight that there are plenty of warnings notifying us of the strong wind conditions. I decided not to speed ramp the video and just let it play out, so you get a sense of how much time the flight took and also how quickly the battery depleted. During this flight with the DJI Mavic Mini, I found out that you can turn the map on in the bottom left-hand corner if you click on the little square map turns on. As you can see, I still have these settings in the new DJI fly app set at meters instead of miles, but I'll convert the numbers for you a little later on in the video.

Around 2,700 meters, which is 1.7 miles, I got the first weak signal warning to notify me about decreased Wi-Fi performance. Then at 3,200 meters or about 2 miles, I got another weak signal warning. And then again at 3,500 meters, which is 2.2 miles roughly, I got another weak signal warning. However, I wanted to see it with my own eyes, so I turned the camera on the DJI Mavic Mini down. I did not keep on flying until I lost the connection, but decided to turn around at a maximum distance of 3,854 meters, which is roughly 2.35 miles.

At that point, I still had a 45% battery left, and this is almost nine minutes into the flight. Flying into the wind on our way out, we averaged about 25 kilometers per hour, which is roughly 15 miles per hour. And at the end of the video, when I'm spinning the drone around, you can see again how the aircraft is moving around in the wind. I estimate the wind was about 10 miles an hour, and the DJI Mavic Mini did a great job managing it. I was totally blown away with how far I could actually fly the DJI Mavic Mini.

I could probably have pushed the mini-drone even further, but this was far enough to prove that the DJI Mavic Mini is not just another toy drone. What do you think about the DJI Mavic Mini? If you'd like to stay up to date with all the latest drone news, scoops, rumors and reviews, then follow us on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram or sign up for our daily email newsletter, that goes out every weekday at 6 p.m. ET. Buy your next drone directly from manufacturers, such as DJI, Parrot, Yuneec or retailers like Adorama, Amazon, B&H, BestBuy, DroneNerds or eBay. By using our links, we will make a small commission at no additional cost to you. DJI just announced the Mavic Mini, an entry-level drone that's designed for anybody and everybody. It's essentially a smaller and cheaper version of DJI's other foldable drones, like the Mavic Pro, Mavic Air and Mavic 2. The Mavic Mini costs $399 and it's available for preorder right now. The Mavic Mini is roughly the same size as the company's DJI Spark, which was released in 2017, but the difference is that the Mavic Mini is foldable, just like every other drone DJI's Mavic line. And the kicker is that because the Mavic Mini weighs just 249 grams, it's actually small enough not need FAA registration, which is one big hassle you don't have to worry about. The Mavic Mini has a three-axis gimbal to help it shoot extra smooth video, which the Spark lacks. It uses DJI's all-new Fly app, which is designed to help new drone pilots learn how to fly and shoot with ease. The Mavic Mini also has a significantly better camera than the Spark. It obviously can't shoot 4K video like it's larger Mavic brethren, and also doesn't have object avoidance (which the Spark actually has). This means that even though the Mavic Mini is more portable and shoots solid video and photos, beginner pilots are going to have to be extra careful when flying around things like trees, people, homes and buildings. New DJI Mavic Mini Deliveries On Hold Until November 11th Last week, DJI unveiled the new DJI Mavic Mini drone, the smallest, lightest, and safest DJI drone ever made. In the press release, the company stated that Mavic Mini would be available for pre-order beginning October 30th, with sales starting November 4th, and shipments starting on November 11th. Now, DJI has changed the on-sale date, putting Mavic Mini deliveries on hold. DJI has reportedly sent emails to all USA dealers, reminding them that the on-sale date for Mavic Mini is November 11th. Meaning, dealers are not able to deliver the Mavic Mini to end-users before November 11th. The suspected reason is the new DJI Fly app, which controls the new Mavic Mini. Last week, DJI made quite a splash with the Mavic Mini releasing, and most YouTube and write-ups proclaiming it didn't need to be registered. Most consumers saw the giant headlines and assumed it meant the DJI Mavic Mini could avoid all FAA regulations. How the DJI Mavic Mini is a Fine Waiting to Happen On the body of the DJI Mavic Mini is the label of ultralight and listing the weight as 249 grams. On the order page for the Mavic Mini is the option to purchase a $15 creative kit. A square meter of the film weighs 120 grams, and the dimensions of the top of the Mavic Mini are 140×82 mm or.01148m2. That works out to an additional 1.3776 grams placing the Mavic Mini over the 250-gram registration requirement. Next is the Fly More Combo for the Mavic Mini, which includes propeller guards. Yes, neither product is needed to fly the Mavic Mini, but this wildly ignores DJI's marketing. The Creative Kit will be a hit among kids, while the propeller cage is a near necessity due to the lack of object avoidance for new pilots. Here's a conversation I had last week with a member of DJI's live chat support asking about the weight of the Mini and if it would need to be registered. Having the weight at 249 grams is being too cute for its own good, and the usual blast of YouTube influencers and press all trumpeted it as the drone to avoid FAA registrations. Most clarified the drone would need to be registered with the prop guards, but most made no mention of the other accessories. It's the consumer slapped with a massive fine for a sticker or failing to follow all flight regulations for hobbyists. Register the Mavic Mini DJI knows better, and the product page should be changed to reflect the reality of the add-ons to the Mavic Mini. Also, the 249-gram weight does NOT mean pilots can avoid flight regulations. Part 107 license holders need to register the Mavic Mini regardless of its weight if there are plans to use it for any commercial activity. Notice a problem with the reviews that hit when the Mavic Mini announced. There weren't many registration numbers which must be clearly visible on the drone in the videos and previews I watched. Is the Mavic Mini a technological marvel? The fact it's that light with the battery life of Mavic 2 Pro is stunning. However, the United States-China trade war isn't ending anytime soon, and DJI poking at regulators with the weight could spell a misstep the company regrets.