Whether you’re looking for one of the best drones, one of the best camera drones or even one of the best FPV drone ready to fly kits available, DJI will undoubtedly be on your watchlist. And for good reason, DJI is the market leader and has developed some of the best consumer UAV technology to date with ease of use and reliability guaranteed.
What’s more, while DJI is far from being the least expensive drone manufacturer, the company has created drones covering almost all price points ranging from the inexpensive Mini 2 SE up to higher-end professional models, and much in between. For example, the DJI Mavic 3 is currently available in two versions offering different camera functionality, while there are three current sub-250g Mini models alongside the Mavic Air 3, which is a medium-sized model.
Choosing the best DJI drone for you
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Choosing the best drone for you will often come down to several factors: Budget, camera features, flight features, size and weight. It’s often a fine balance where you may have to make some concessions in one area to take full advantage of another, although it’s safe to say that with DJI drones you can most often enjoy the best balance of these at most price points. All DJI drones are also available in basic kits or Fly More Bundles, with the latter offering additional batteries, a charging hub and extra accessories which often include a carry case, so something to bear in mind.
Typically, the more you spend the more you get in terms of flight features and camera functionality, but this doesn’t necessarily deliver the best option for you. For example, the DJI Mavic 3 Pro is the best consumer/prosumer drone available in all areas, but weighing in at 33.8oz / 958g it’s not the best option if you’d prefer or need the best sub-250g model available, which is the DJI Mini 4 Pro. So, let’s take a look at the options available so you can make the most informed buying decision…
The best DJI drones for all budgets we recommend in 2024
Whether you’re an absolute beginner looking for an inexpensive beginner model or a more powerful and fully featured model, we’ve compiled a selection of the best DJI for all budgets. Each drone brings with it a range of pros and cons so be sure to check out our full reviews, but it’s safe to say that you will find an option in our recommended line-up that’s perfect for you, wherever you are in your drone journey.
Mini DJI drones
DJI Mini 2SE: from $338 / £309 on Amazon
The DJI Mini 2SE is DJI’s most inexpensive drone model and one that falls into the regulator-friendly sub-250g category. These two factors alone make it a great budget beginner option that benefits from DJI’s solid UAV technology and build quality. The Mini 2 SE is a fairly basic model with no collision avoidance, but it does offer GPS positioning and Return to Home alongside Quickshots automated flight patterns which allow you to capture professional-looking videos at the touch of a button. Video can be captured at up to 2.7K at 30fps, while 12MP photos can be captured in both Raw and JPEG formats.
DJI Mini 3: from $394 / £429 on Amazon
The DJI Mini 3 is a beginner model that builds on the offering provided by the Mini 2 SE. Likewise, it doesn’t offer collision avoidance but it does provide GPS positioning, Return to Home and Quickshots automated flight patterns. It excels in being a more powerful drone with a longer battery life despite also being a sub-250g model. Plus, the camera is much more advanced and provides excellent image quality with the ability to rotate the camera 90 degrees to capture photos and video in portrait format. Video can be captured at up to 4K at 30fps with 12MP and 48MP photos in Raw and JPEG.
DJI Mini 4 Pro: from $809 / £684 on Amazon
As the name suggests, the DJI Mini 4 Pro is a sub-250g model but one that offers more professional-level features to suit both the needs of enthusiasts and professionals alike. The camera offers the ability to capture photos and videos in both landscape and portrait formats, although some functionality is more advanced. Video can be captured at up to 4K at 100fps with the ability to capture in the flat 10-bit D-Log M color profile, while photos can be captured at 12MP and 48MP in both Raw and JPEG. The Mini 4 Pro also offers omnidirectional collision avoidance, advanced subject tracking and Quickshots automated flight patterns all within a sub-250g package.
Midrange DJI drone
DJI Mavic Air 3: from $1160 / £958 on Amazon
Taking up the middle ground in the DJI line-up, in terms of size, weight, power and functionality, is the DJI Air 3. This is a medium-sized foldable drone with a weight of 25.4oz / 720g, but with this size increase over the Mini models you get a lot more drone for your money but with slightly more flight restrictions than sub-250g models in many regions. Flight times are up to 46 minutes with 26mph wind resistance. Plus, there’s omnidirectional collision avoidance, advanced Return to Home and advanced subject tracking features. The dual camera provides excellent image quality with 24mm and 70mm equivalent focal lengths. Video can be captured up to 4K at 100fps with professional options available, while photos can be captured at 12MP and 48Mp with both cameras.
Advanced DJI drone
DJI Mavic 3 Pro: from $2199 / £1808 on Amazon
The DJI Mavic 3 Pro is the best and most advanced consumer/prosumer drone to date thanks to advanced features including omnidirectional collision avoidance, advanced Return to Home and advanced subject tracking. This is a powerful 33.8oz / 958g drone offering three cameras on its gimbal. The main 24mm camera features an impressive Four Thirds 20MP sensor, while the other two cameras use smaller sensors and provide 70mm and 166mm equivalent focal lengths. Image quality is excellent across the three cameras with professional video functionality available alongside an adjustable aperture in the main camera. There are simply too many features to list, but this is the best foldable consumer drone money can buy.
Ensure there's room to grow
DJI isn’t the only drone manufacturer worth considering with other manufacturers including Autel and Potensic among others. As always, do as much research as possible to be sure that you’ve chosen not only the model that meets your needs now but also one that has room for you to grow as your flight, photography and video skills inevitably grow.
The beauty of drone photography and video is that they provide the ability to view and capture the world from new and interesting viewpoints you couldn’t easily achieve without a drone. From high-altitude vistas to capturing locations inaccessible on foot, drones are incredibly versatile tools. So, if you’re ready to enhance your photography and video with your first drone looking for an upgrade over what you already have, our recommendations will have you covered.
The best DJI drones frequently asked questions
Which DJI drone models are best for beginners?
Sub-250g drones are a great option for beginners because they're small, lightweight and are less restricted than larger drones in most regions. This ultimately makes them easier to fly, and some models provide advanced features and professional camera functionality.
Are larger DJI drones unsuitable for beginners?
Sub-250g models may be recommended for beginners, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't buy a larger model if you have the budget. The Air 3 and Mavic 3 models are just as easy to fly as the Mini models, but just remember that larger drones are subject to more rules and regulations. These can be checked for all drones on the FAA website in the US and the CAA website in the UK.
Do DJI drone kits include everything I need?
Most DJI drone kits, except for drone-only options, include everything you need to get started with flight, but Fly More Bundles offer additional useful accessories. You may need to register your drone or register yourself as a drone pilot with your country's aviation authority depending on the model you buy and the region where you live.
Should I buy a Fly More Bundle?
Fly More Bundles typically include an extra two batteries, additional spare propellers, a battery charging hub and a carry bag for the drone. So, for many people what's included is extremely useful. The Fly More Bundle is also usually less expensive than buying the included items separately.
Will I require any additional accessories?
You can fly perfectly well with just a drone, controller and smartphone if you don't have a smart controller, but there are accessories, such as landing mats, that are extremely useful. Check out our 'Drones accessories Christmas gift guide' for some handy recommendations.
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James is an award-winning freelance landscape and portrait photographer, as well as a highly experienced photography journalist working with some of the best photography magazines and websites with a worldwide audience. He’s also the author of The Digital Darkroom: The Definitive Guide to Photo Editing. www.jamesaphoto.co.uk