Although the DJI Mini 3 and the Autel Evo Nano are both in the same weight class with multiple similar features, the truth is that they are not the same. If you are considering buying the DJI Mini 3 or Autel Evo Nano, you do not wish to make any costly mistakes.
To pick the best option for your situation, you must understand each of the two drones comprehensively.
In this article, I will provide a sweeping review of each drone, their similarities and differences, and recommend the better option.
DJI Mini 3 Review
The DJI Mini 3 is a sophisticated entry-level drone designed with efficiency and affordability in mind. While the DJI Mini 3 lacks obstacle avoidance, it is a perfect option for pilots who want to stretch their creativity to the maximum.
Furthermore, the tri-directional obstacle sensing with the three settings, brake, bypass, and off, perfectly play a similar role as obstacle avoidance.
DJI Mini 3 features a lightweight airframe making it registration free in the US.
In the US, drones that weigh less than 249 have fewer restrictions. However, you will need to pass the FAA basic knowledge exam (TRUST test).
Excellent camera for creators
The DJI Mini 3 camera is an upgrade of the Mini 2 to provide creators with more capability and efficiency. Although the camera has the same 24mm, just as the Mini 24mm, it can gather twice as much light for higher-quality video.
The DJI Mini 3’s gimbal is also a fabulous feat of technology. With this feature, you can comfortably take magical shots from different angles.
When it comes to videos, the camera records 4k in your choice of 30 or 24 fps. Generally, the footage from this drone looks stunning, with accurate details void of over-sharpening effects.
Additional key features
- Downward vision sensors
- Weighs 249 grams
- Raw and JPEG image capability
- 12MP, Type 1/1.3 sensor
- Portrait shooting
- 38 minutes flight time
Autel Evo Nano review
The Autel Evo Nano is another incredible drone for hobbyists and creators looking to invest in a UAV with a 249 g takeoff weight to avoid the need to go through the registration process.
It supports sports sensors and 4k HDR video and can fly for about 30 minutes without recharging or replacing the battery.
Aircraft and controller
The Autel Nano is a compact drone that perfectly fits in the palm of your hand. In addition, it features obstacle avoidance sensors on the back and front, making it safe to fly in different environments.
Regarding the remote controller, Autel has significantly refined it to make controlling the drone smooth and easy. Overall, the remote is ergonomically friendly and lightweight, and you can comfortably connect it to your smartphone.
Additionally, features such as return to home, photo, power, and video are prominently displayed, making it easy and comfortable to control.
Photos and videos
The Autel Nano is a great drone for taking magic photos and videos. Its camera features a 50MP, 11/1.28″ CMOS mounted on a 3-axis gimbal, rendering it easy to shoot quality footage from different angles. The RYB color filter increases the light input for better footage clarity.
Furthermore, the Autel Sky app allows shooting in manual, auto, or shutter manual, giving you the flexibility you need to take quality photos.
Generally, the quality of footage from Autel Nano is impressive for both content creators and hobbyists.
Additional Key features of the Autel Nano include the following;
- 30 minutes flight time
- 4k video characterized by gimbal stabilization
- Three-way obstacle sensors
- Return-to-home functionality
- Automated quick shots
DJI Mini 3 vs. Autel Nano – Which is the better option?
While the DJI Mini 3 and Autel Nano are great drones with many similar features, the DJI Mini 3 is slightly better due to its excellent camera capabilities, flight time, subject-tracking ability, and overall performance.
The Autel Nano is a great drone capable of sharp images, obstacle sensing, a 10 km flight range, and above-average flight performance.
Keep reading to learn why the DJI Mini 3 is a great option for you.
Pricing and availability
The DJI Mini 3 and Autel Nano have mid-range price tags, with Autel Nano’s being slightly higher.
The Autel Nano comes in two kits: a standard bundle and a premium bundle. The standard bundle includes the drone, one battery, a controller, and other accessories.
In contrast, the premium bundle has everything in the standard with the power adaptor, two additional batteries, extra pairs of propellers, and a charging hub.
On the other hand, the Mini 3 comes in three kits; one without a controller, a DJI RC-N1 controller, and one with DJI RC smart controller. The kits have varying price ranges. You can always go for the kit that will serve your needs the best.
The flight features influence the efficiency and usability of a drone. While both drones offer collision avoidance with the capability to capture quality images, the Mini 3’s camera can rotate 90 degrees, making it ideal for social media footage.
The Autel offers an advanced collision avoidance system on the drone’s bottom, rear, and front.
The sensors are highly sensitive and effective when slowing the drone when it comes close to objects. Its collision avoidance system is more effective than the DJI version.
The Mini 3 uses a tri-directional obstacle system that allows you to avoid collisions. Regarding obstacle avoidance and general flight features, the Autel Nano takes the lead, but they are both safe to fly.
Regarding flight performance, the DJI is a definitive winner as it features a 34-minute flight time. Further, it offers an option of upgrading its battery to make it more powerful and extend the flight time up to 40 minutes.
The Autel Nano can achieve a flight time of 28 minutes. However, due to atmospheric pressure, weather, and environmental conditions, the flight time of the Autel Nano can drop to 25 minutes.
Likewise, expect the flight time of the Mini 3 Pro to drop to a 30-minute flight time.
Video and image quality
The DJI Mini 3 and Autel Nano can shoot 4k videos in flat color profiles, and they both have similar apertures and resolutions.
If your primary objective of investing in either of these drones is to elevate your photography, both drones are impressive.
However, the Mini 3 camera is more convenient as it rotates for portrait videos and photos. Additionally, the Mini 3 can capture 48 MP in JPEG and raw, while the Autel can only capture 50MP JPEGs.
Design and controller
The DJI 3 and the Autel Nano drones have compact and foldable designs, making them ideal for travel.
Besides, they both weigh less than 249g, implying that you will not have to register them with the FAA or the body responsible for regulating drones in your state, as it is the norm when dealing with a drone weighing above 250g.
Even though the DJI 3 and Autel Nano weigh the same, they have a different appearance, with the DJI 3 being slightly larger. However, both can easily fit into a large jacket pocket. Hence, they are easy to transport.
Another primary difference between the two drones regarding design is that the DJI Mini 3 is available only in gray, while the Autel has four colors, giving you more options.
Whether you like deep space gray, classic orange, arctic white, or blazing red, Autel ensures that you find the right color for your preference.
If you love hiking, active track capability will do you a lot of favors as it allows the drone to track and keep recording without direct input from your hands.
The DJI Mini 3 boasts an advanced version of Active Track making it ideal for drone enthusiasts who want to film themselves when running, hiking, or participating in activities that are best filmed through the help of these features.
Unfortunately, the Autel Nano lacks the active track feature and may not be the best option in some situations. Nonetheless, Autel has acknowledged the need to incorporate this feature into their production.
The DJI Mini 3 and Autel Nano can be charged using any USB adapter.
The process is similar in that the charger detects the battery with more power and charges it first before transiting to the next. The charge status is indicated by permanent or flashing lit LEDs.
Why is the DJI Mini 3 so great?
Despite the similarities, the DJI Mini 3 emerges as the better option when compared with the Autel Nano. Here is why you can never go wrong by investing in the DJI Mini 3.
Tri-directional obstacle sensing
The tri-directional obstacle-sensing capability is like your guardian angel. If you are a beginner, you are sharpening your skills, and a slight mistake can damage your drone.
The tri-directional obstacle-sensing capability was designed for both beginners and experts.
With this feature, you can comfortably fly your drone in different airspaces without the anxiety of destroying your drone.
The DJI’s front, rear and downward directions, coupled with an advanced pilot assistance system, work to make flying in complex environments thrilling.
Lightweight (249 g)
The DJI Mini 3 and Autel Nano are lightweight, meaning you can never go wrong with either regarding portability. If you are a frequent traveler, you will have an easy time traveling with your drone.
Moreover, the 249 g is compliant with drone regulations in many countries. Hence you will not have to take your drone through the registration process.
The native HDR is designed to ensure high-quality videos and photos. In other words, it is a feature intended to guarantee high-quality images whenever you press the shutter.
Whether you face poor lighting or overexposure, the Native HDR will pitch your work to the next level.
The intelligent features
Another characteristic that sets the DJI Mini 3 apart is the intelligent features that encourage users to embrace productivity whenever they interact with the drone.
For instance, if you want to track objects/people in motion, boats, or trains, the FocusTrack feature covers you.
Further, MasterShots allows you to capture cinematic and thrilling footage. The Mastershots determine the flight and camera movement to make it easy to generate magical photos and videos.
Additional intelligent features that provide an endless way to create great content for your audience include the hyper-lapse and timelapse shots, QuickShots, Panorama, and Digital Zoom.
34-Minute flight time
Whether you want to use your DJI Mini 3 drone for fun or professional purposes, long flight time is essential as it provides ample time to achieve your objectives.
Besides, if you find that the 34-flight time is inadequate, you can always upgrade.
When you have more time in the air, you have enough time to be creative and do a great job with your drone.
Moreover, the anxiety about the battery dying before you complete your shooting is aleviated, meaning you have more time to explore your surroundings.
Lastly, the DJI Mini 3 enables you to execute true vertical shooting. You get unique and ideal photos for your social media platforms with true vertical shooting.
This is because vertical shooting ensures that you do not compromise on the quality of your content when sharing through social media platforms.
The DJI Mini 3 is a perfect drone designed with efficiency in mind.
With features such as excellent photo resolution, vertical shooting, long flight time, intelligent features, and Native HDR, among other great features, you can never go wrong with the DJI Mini 3.
On the other hand, the Autel Nano, with features such as automated flight modes, subject tracking, advanced collision avoidance, and a quality camera, is a fairly good drone.
However, it is not quite as good as the DJI Mini 3.