- DJI has released the Mini 4 Pro, an upgraded version of its smallest camera drone, with improvements to the sensor, transmission system, and software features.
- The Mini 4 Pro offers slow motion recording at 4K@100fps, improved low-light performance, and a new wide-angle accessory lens for a super-wide field of view.
- The drone also supports 10-bit color profiles, has an improved transmission range of up to 20 km, and includes Waypoints and Cruise Control features for programmed flights.
Hot on the heels of the new Air 3, DJI is back with a major revision to the smallest member of its camera drone lineup. The Mini 4 Pro is another significant upgrade to the previous generation, including a dual native ISO sensor with more capabilities, enhanced transmission system, and support for software features previously only available with the Mavic series.
Like all the drones in DJI’s Mini family, the Mini 4 Pro weighs just 249 grams, falling narrowly below the 250 gram limit where the FAA requires small unmanned aircraft to be registered. Last year’s Mini 3 Pro was a landmark release for the Mini family as it was the first to be equipped with a largely uncompromised camera sensor and lens, all but completely replacing the larger and more expensive Air 2, and almost replacing the Air 2S.
The Mini 4 Pro brings a series of new enhancements to the table. As a camera drone, a great deal of attention is owed to the sensor and processing capabilities. The new version supports slow motion recording at up to 4K@100fps, up from just 1080p@120fps in the previous generation. It also supports up to 4K@60fps HDR video to produce even greater dynamic range.
Low-light performance will also see big gains thanks to a new sensor with dual native ISO. This allows the use of a second (higher) ISO setting that produces less noise. DJI also has a new and improved noise reduction algorithm in a Night Shots video mode that goes even further to deliver usable footage while shooting with limited light.
DJI is also introducing a new wide-angle accessory lens that produces a super-wide 100° FOV, sold separately. It fits onto the camera just like one of the ND filters, augmenting the built-in lens in much the same way a Moment lens works with a smartphone camera.
Much like the Air 3 and recent Mavic drones, DJI is also supporting 10-bit D-Log M and HLG color profiles in the Mini 4 Pro, which are easier to color grade than the D-Cinelike profile in the Mini 3 Pro. While it’s still a bit early for the M variant, and it’s not as well-supported as the D-Log profile from the Mavic series, it’s a great step up and will likely be widely supported in most editing software soon.
Range is also improved, with the new O4 video transmission system supporting up to 1080p/60fps FHD at distances of up to 20 km. While keeping the drone in visible range is still important, this strengthens the signal against radio interference and unexpected challenges that may come up.
On the software front, DJI is also extending the Waypoints and Cruise Control features to the Mini 4 Pro. These features were previously exclusive to the professional-level Mavic line, but were a surprise addition in the Air 3. With this step, all DJI drones can now be programmed (without third-party software) to follow a designated path, or simply fly in a direct line without persistent pilot input.
The one change we’ve often come to expect, but won’t be seeing in this update, is elongated flight times. Similar to the previous generation, the standard batteries will only make it to 34 minutes of flight time, and the Intelligent Flight Battery Plus will be able to achieve 45 minutes, which is just barely shorter than the 47 that they could hit in the Mini 3 Pro. As a reminder, the Plus batteries increase the weight of the drone to more than 249 grams, and thus legally require registration in the US and generally have other flight restrictions around the world.
If you’re in the market for the Mini 4 Pro, the base package retails for $759 with DJI RC-N2 Remote Controller (requires smartphone), Intelligent Flight Battery, a pair of propellers, and the usual array of cables and other accessories. A package with the RC 2 controller is available for $959 and includes all the same gear. But for the full flight experience, the Fly More Combo (with RC 2 controller) will run $1,099, and it includes a total of three batteries, three pairs of propellers, a DJI Mini Shoulder Bag, and Two-Way Charging Hub. Finally, if you would like to pick up the extended flight time batteries, they replace the regular batteries in the Fly More Combo Plus for $1,159. All of these options are available now from DJI's website, and should be available from authorized resellers soon.
DJI Mini 4 Pro
The DJI Mini 4 Pro is an extremely lightweight and portable camera drone. Weighing in at or below 250 grams, it is often free to fly in places where other drones might not be allowed. The built-in 1/1.3-inch camera sensor is comparable to the heavier Air 3, the sensor is now capable of dual native ISO and the enhanced Night Shot mode includes a noise reduction algorithm designed to produce better footage with less noise in low light. The new O4 transmission system also extends the maximum potential range and improves stability amid radio interference.