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DJI Mini SE vs Mini 2 SE: How much more does this drone update get you?

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The month of February was 2023. DJI unveiled its DJI Mini 2 SE without minimal celebration, and an expected inflationary price hike, but there are some changes in the DJI Mini SE sequel. When the upgraded version comes out will the more expensive model be worth the price (assuming that the Mini SE stays on sale in certain places)?

Before we dive in to find out, however, what exactly are these drones that cost less? It’s likely to be evident to anyone who is familiar with the various levels that iPhone Apple offer; the iPhone SE is the cheapest model, and is based on older designs and technology than the more modern models. It is designed in order to maintain the basic level for Apple’s usually expensive devices low, but still maintains the high standards of the brand.

It’s no accident that DJI picked the moniker ‘SE. It seems that a lot of the overall design and feel DJI’s high-quality packaging something to Apple however, it’s the case of a lot of tech companies today.

In a rapidly growing market, the term “SE” was a way to keep alive costly R&D that was more than enough for the majority of users. In the same way that Apple reused the shells of earlier iPhones, DJI first took the 2019 Mavic Mini and repurposed the shell, along with other components to create Mini SE. Mini SE in 2021/22 (depending your location). The Mavic Mini was replaced by the more powerful Mini 2.

The conclusion is that there are certainly a few identical product names (another possibility to be made with the firm that is based on fruits) There are more options available of DJI in this important weight class. (We should not forget that the Mini 3). Mini 3 has effectively replaced the Mini 2, while a Mini 3 Pro sits above the Mini 3 Pro).

Outside of the “mini” zone DJI also has other drones such as the heavier Mavic 3, but all drones that have “Mini” in the title are rated at 249g or lower. This puts them within the European A0 class, which is lower than the weight that is registered within the USA. That’s why there is lots of investment and choices here. Which is the best choice for you?

DJI Mini Vs Mini 2 SE Design and build

We’re certainly not likely to have to devote long time in this topic. The main distinction in the drones is the model’s name that appears in the arms. This is because the airframe is identical for both drones and, in fact, was taken over of Mavic Mini. Mavic Mini before that.

This design has been a great one, featuring propellor blades that extend due to the force of centripetal use, allowing the aircraft to shrink to a smaller size. The gimbal is 3-axis around the camera in the front, and is protected to a certain extent by the fuselage’s overhang. The rechargeable battery slides through an opening in the rear. Once you have the battery in position just a tap of the button on the power supply will show the amount of charge in a four-light power meter.

Both drones support the MicroSD card. They also come with an USB-C connector to charge the battery.

But don’t fret, there’s more to this that you’ll find out as we move to our Controller and Range heading.

DJI Mini SE vs Mini 2 SE Manoeuvrability and speed

The Mavic Mini has similar amount of speed and maneuverability. It’s not a shock certainly, but it’s important to note how wind-resistance of 10.5 metres per second (m/s) is an enormous improvement over the original Mavic Mini, which means that both drones are slightly more stable in the face of winds. This is due to DJI’s software, which allows the drone to lean towards the wind as high as 20 mph (or 30@ when you are in the more powerful “Sport” mode).

The built-in GPS and optical sensor that faces downwards can also ensure that the drone is capable of keeping its location or direction with little effort from the pilot’s side. For those who are focused about the image or the video or images they’re taking which is important.

However, it is interesting to note that the Mini 2 SE claims a small improvement in wind resistance; an additional 0.2m/s increasing it to 10.7 millimeters per second. The Mini 2 SE is similar to the Wind Force Level 5 that is Mini SE. Mini SE, but now is in line with that of the Mini 3 series. It appears that, at least for the moment that the physics of the drone’s sail area in relation to weight is the primary aspect.

DJI Mini SE vs Mini 2 SE: Battery life

Although both drones utilize the same battery – which is advertised in the DJI’s accessory store under the name of it’s the DJI Mini 2 battery – it seems like it’s the Mini 2 SE can squeeze an additional one minute worth of time of it. It’s not much however it’s an important time, especially when you’re trying to reach a specific location and begin capturing. If you’re flying taking off for fun – and no one is to blame you? landing and taking off are to be less stressful.

Small improvements like this are made from improvements to motors or the software that drives them (both drones have the same propellers and also). It’s worth noting however that in both cases , the maximum flight duration is measured as constant forward speed and hovering requires more power, which will drain the battery more quickly.

Sadly, in contrast to that of the Mini 3, there is no possibility of installing an additional battery to allow to extend the flight duration, however, one hour is an incredible amount of time. It beats the Autel Nano, for instance. You can also avail the benefit of using DJI’s Charging Hub the batteries. It has three ports, and it charges sequentially which makes it simpler to charge (and transport) batteries in a timely manner.

DJI Mini SE v Mini 2 SE: Gimbal

The fact that a camera can be mounted on a gimbal most likely what sets DJI and its competitors such as Autel against the crowd of drones that are cheaper for beginners. You can certainly lower the cost by replacing this mechanical element by cushioning it however the results aren’t great (at the very least, what we’ve observed so far).

The 3-axis gimbal and its mount absorb vibrations from the aircraft and counteract the movements of the aircraft in order to guarantee smooth and smooth-sounding video produced by the camera. Both drones offer the same degree of manual control. You can rotate the camera between straight-down and level (or 20@ upwards, by selecting the option in the settings).

This is where we can notice the main differences in the models. There is a major difference between the two models. New Mini 2 SE comes with DJI’s latest style of controllers, the RC-1 that supports the latest technology DJI calls OccuSync 2. The primary benefit is the more transmission distance. The controller is now available across DJI’s entire range of consumer devices.

The RC-N1 controller has larger in size than it’s predecessor, the Mini SE, but it comes with several improvements. It does not have an open hinged antennas, or fold-out grips to hold your smartphone (which acts as a monitor). Instead, the top of device slides upwards and holds the phone on top of the sticks, which means it’s not necessary to turn your head down while you shift your gaze between the plane and the monitor.

It is also able to recharge the phone’s charge using its bigger battery, which is a good thing considering that flying can keep the phone’s screen powered, which draws energy. With a modern, high-quality phone, you also get an excellent, bright display.

The quality of the actual video of the live view preview video is superior too double the bitrate can ensure less pixelation as with the benefit of an even more robust stream. It’s not it’s the case that Mini SE was bad either but here we are referring solely to the quality you can see while flying high-quality video is recorded onto the card.

It is important to note that having a longer range doesn’t mean that you’ll be able to travel the distances specified. In the majority of cases, you’re restricted to much less legally. It’s more of a measurement of signal strength. So it’s better than control, it, it will have more confidence in event of interference.

There is basically nothing that separates the drones in this case and they have identical sized CMOS image sensors as well as the same features, apart from Panorama.

Panorama is an option that can be automated that lets you simply hover the drone towards the right direction, and it will take several images in order that it will automatically stitch to create an image panorama. This feature, which is available on the majority of DJI drones, was omitted on in the Mini SE but it seems that the Mini 2 SE can handle it.

The images are then captured in 4:3 format at the camera’s maximum resolution of 12 megapixels (or the option of cropping 16:9) which are saved in JPEG format. You can alter the settings prior to shooting but there’s no RAW option available on the drone.

Making sure that the Mini 2 SE is cost-effective (and aiding in the differentiation of DJI’s products) This means that Mini 2 SE isn’t a great choice. Mini 2 SE still restricts its capabilities only to 2.7K video. It’s about the same amount of pixels that iPhone 14 Pro Max. iPhone 14 Pro Max (2796 1290 pixels) which is an excellent value however, people who are looking for 4K video are going to be dissatisfied. DJI certainly would recommend users to the more expensive Mini 3 series.

We’ve already reviewed the gimbal and it is an excellent opportunity to emphasize that resolution is not the only measurement on the level of quality in drone videos. The video is stable and 2.7K is sharp enough for the majority of uses. Contrary to Mini 3, however, the camera is horizontal, which means that a the lower resolution will be exposed when the camera is cropped to vertical format. The digital zoom, too, can be described as a unique feature even at 2x, it will show the limitations of a 12- millimeter sensor.

It’s a tiny sensor with autofocus instead of fixed focus and autofocus, however that will not matter as much as you would think. A drone footage is usually captured in good lighting at some distance. Even though it’s a refresh and it is possible to request an upgrade however, we believe that the footage will be awe-inspiring to many in a good way.

DJI Mini SE v Mini 2 SE: Software features

Both drones require a smartphone (iOS and Android) and the DJI Fly app to provide access to all features , and to give crucial feedback. It’s a great toolthat has been improved in the course of time. It can now be found across every DJI consumer drones.

The same technology is that is on the plane, there’s nothing to comparison. DJI offers a variety of “QuickShots” that let the drone control its camera and drone to create a share-worthy video lasting around 15 seconds without any input from the user. Both drones provide the same QuickShots. And let’s admit it, they’re enjoyable.

You can of course use the Panorama function, but only with mini 2 SE. Mini 2 SE, as it is also in this category and that’s an isolated win for the latest model.

DJI Mini SE vs Mini 2 SE: Verdict

It’s clear it is it is that the DJI Mini 2 SE is the better option because it’s basically the same, but with a arguably more modern and better controller. However, as both are on the shelves of the supplier chain do they really warrant the extra money? We’re not sure.

We really like our Panorama feature, particularly when the results are inserted into an app that lets you scroll and move around the reverse circle. The main benefit is the enhanced controller. Its Mini 2 SE makes tangible improvements in signal strength and you can clearly see how much benefit this extra bandwidth offers in streamed live video. It is evident that the Mini SE is definitely happier with clearer skies and is further from urban interference. However, the successor does not have issues of this kind.

If you’re trying to save money, you’ll get a great product with Mini SE. Mini SE. One could argue that it’s lighter and smaller controller can be a plus (especially in the case of reliable phone batteries). We can’t imagine that the old SE will remain in stock for long so if you’re looking for the best price, now is the time to get it. Video recorded on the computer looks exactly similar as well. The benefits of live streaming seem rather insignificant once you’ve transferred the video onto your smartphone or tablet to watch it again.

For both models, DJI provide the drone and a single controller as well as the Fly More bundle with extra propellors for spares, a set of three batteries and a charging hub and bag. Mini 2 SE Mini 2 SE also throws the propellor with a rubber protector that adds an additional layer of security, and it can be converted from a zipped cases to traditional camera bag that has a strap.

We’re saying this as it’s true that the Fly More bundle is a great deal, and we’ve seen it heavily reduced, adding weight for the Mini SE’s advantage. It’s not that we don’t love Mini 2 SE, but we do like the Mini 2 SE, but should you be looking to shell out for a bit more, then consider Mini 3! Mini 3 too!