Spec Comparison of the DJI Mavic Air 2 and the Skydio 2
In this comparison we are comparing the similarly priced DJI Mavic Air 2 and the Skydio 2 camera drones.
Both drones are brand new for 2020 and the Mavic Air 2 was released in spring of this year with the Skydio 2 just being released as a 2020 summer release, so is slightly newer of the two camera drones.
They both cost $999 brand new so sit in the same price category.
First of, these two drones, although similar in price, are very very different. The DJI Mavic Air 2 is a folding arm camera drone which means it is portable and travel friendly, compared to most camera drones that is.
The Skydio 2 is a fixed arm camera drone, which means the only way you can make it smaller is by removing the props. It's arms are fixed and stay point out. This is probably due to all the extra sensors and cameras it has built in to the arms to make it do the things it can do, and it can do some incredible things in terms of obstacle avoidance and people tracking.
Because of their build styles and differences, the dimensions and volume of each camera drone is much different.
The Skydio 2 has a total volume of 4505cm³ which is equivalent to 4.5L in size and is 3L larger than the DJI Mavic Air 2 in it's smallest form, because of it's folding arms.
The Mavic Air 2 is 1466cm³ which equates to 1.5L in size and volume.
In terms of weight, the Mavic Air 2 is also smaller, at 570grams in total, ready to fly, compared to the 775grams of the Skydio 2.
Where the real differences lie in these two camera drones are not the size, or the camera, but the performance and what they can do.
The Skydio 2 has some of the worlds best active tracking of a vehicle or person and obstacle avoidance in all directions, omnidirectional obstacle avoidance, needs to be seen to be believed.
The DJI Mavic Air 2 is the faster of the two camera drones, capable of 69kmh compare to 58kmh for the Skydio 2.
The Skydio 2 wins in terms of max wind tolerance, capable of wind speeds of up to 40kmh, compared to 38kmh for the MA2, so not much in it.
The transmission distance is much bigger for the DJI Mavic Air 2 as well, but this could be because it comes with a larger controller which will have great signal. Were as with the Skydio 2 you can use just your smartphone to control the drone, which immediatley limits the distance the video transmission and control can go.
One of the great things about the DJI Mavic Air 2 is the 34 minute flight time. It has a 34 minute flight time, compared to just 23 minutes for the Skydio 2.
This is probably Skydio 2 camera drones worst feature, the smaller flight time, especially when there are drones coming out in 2020 between 30 - 40 minutes. But this is probably due to the amount of technology, extra cameras and sensors that are on the camera drone.
The Skydio 2 performs best as an autonomous camera drone, by tracking you or an particular object you want to follow, the drone will do all of the work, with very few issues, you just have to keep your eye on it every now and then when you are in an area with plenty of obstacles, like trees or a forest.
The DJI Mavic Air 2 also has active tracking, as well as object tracking and spotlight features but they are just not as good compared to the Skydio 2 because of the fewer obstacle avoidance sensors and tracking software used.
Photo and Video Comparison
If it was how many cameras and image sensors wins the race, the Skydio 2 would easily be at the top of the pile. It's main camera though is what we are interested in here, with a Sony IMX577 which is a 1/2.3" sized image sensor.
It has a video bitrate of 100 mbps, 4K video recording resolution, 1080p is capable of 120fps slow motion footage and takes 12MP photos.
It can also take RAW photos, similar to the DJI Mavic Air 2.
The DJI MA2 also has a 4K video camera, using the slightly larger Sony IMX586 which is a 1/2" image sensor
This sensor means that the DJI Mavic Air 2 is capable of 48mp JPEG photos which is much larger than the Skydio 2 offering and 1080p at 240fps, compared to the 120fps of the Skydio 2.
Both camera drones are 4K at 60fps capable.
You also get a few more camera features in terms of photography and video upgrades such as HDR video and d-cinelike flat profile which is great if you want to colour grade your footage in post.
These camera drones are both spectacular in their offerings, but they do cater for totally different filming types.
The Mavic Air 2 can be seen as a mid level or even portable professional aerial photography and film making drone with a lot of features on it.
The Skydio 2 which is the same price is definitely more of an autonomous camera drone which is perfect for vloggers looking for a camera drone to film their adventures.
If you want a drone which has some of the best active tracking and obstacle avoidance, you can't beat the Skydio 2. You can still fly in manual as a remote control can be used with this drone too.
But if you want to have more manual controls and a longer flight time, the Mavic Air 2 is an incredible drone in it's own right, just don't expect it to have the tracking features and obstacle avoidance of the Skydio 2.
|Buy||Buy @ DJIBuy @ Amazon||Buy @ Skydio|
|Title||DJI Mavic Air 2 Drone Specs||Skydio 2 Drone Specs|
|Release Date||1 year ago||11 months 2 weeks ago|
|Dimensions (smallest)||180 × 97 × 84 mm||223 × 273 × 74 mm|
|Controller Type||remote controller and smart phone||remote controller and smart phone, remote controller only, smart phone only|
|Controller Dimensions||101 × 152 × 38 mm|
|Controller Volume Size||583cm³|
|Drone & Controller Combined Volume||2049cm³|
|Drone & Controller Combined Weight|
|Physical Features||folding arms|
|Max Ascent Speed||4m/s|
|Max Descent Speed||4m/s|
|Max Wind Speed||38kmh||40kmh|
|Wind Resistance||level 5||level 6|
|Max Flight Altitude||5000m|
|Transmission Distance||10 km||3 km|
|Flight Time||34 minutes||23 minutes|
|Noise Level||74 decibels||70 decibels|
|Charge Time||100 minutes||60 minutes|
|Uptime Score (Charge Time / Battery Life)||25/100||28/100|
|Flight Distance (Speed X Flight Time)||38.53km||22.20km|
Photo and Video Specs
Photo and Video Specs
|Field of View||84°|
|Max Bitrate||120 Mbps||100 Mbps|
|Image Sensor||sony imx586||sony imx577|
|Image Sensor Size||1/2" Inch||1/2.3" Inch|
|Image Sensor Size Diagonal||8.00mm|
|Slow mo (1080p)||8x||4x|
|Slowest FPS (1080p)||240fps||120fps|
|Best Video Resolution||4k||4k|
|Flight Modes||cinematic mode, normal mode, sport mode|
|Image Format||DNG, JPEG, raw||DNG, JPEG, raw|
|Image Processor||qualcomm QCS605|
|Obstacle Avoidance||backward, downward, forward||backward, downward, forward, forward camera, omnidirectional|
|Photo Modes||180 degree panorama, auto exposure bracketing, burst photos, HDR, interval, manual ISO, manual shutter speed, panorama, single shot, sphere panorama, timed photos||interval, manual ISO, manual shutter speed, single shot|
|Resolution and FPS Pairings||1080p 120fps, 1080p 240fps, 1080p 30fps, 1080p 60fps, 2.7k 30fps, 2.7k 60fps, 4k 30fps, 4k 60fps||1080p 120fps, 1080p 30fps, 1080p 60fps, 4k 30fps, 4k 60fps|
|Auto Shot Modes||asteroid, boomerang, circle, course lock, dronie, free, helix, rocket, waypoint||boomerang, cable cam, dronie, rocket|
|Tracking Modes||active track, focus track, point of interest||active track, point of interest|
|Video Format||D-Cinelike, H.264, H.265, MOV, MP4||H.264, H.265, MPEG-4|
|Video Modes||HDR, video||video|
|Image Stabilization||3 axis gimbal||3 axis gimbal|