DJI Air 2s vs Mini 2 Image Quality

In this comparison, I will analyze the photo quality and features of these two models to see which one is better suited to different kinds of users: beginners, casual users, or semi-professional

DJI Air 2s vs Mini 2 Photo Features

Air 2sMini 2
Weight595 grams249 grams
Battery life31 minutes31 minutes
Sensor size1″1/2.3″
Aperturef 2.8f 2.8
Field of view88° (22 mm)83° (24 mm)
Photo resolution20 MP12 MP
Photo formatJPEG, RAWJPEG, RAW
DJI Air 2s vs Mini 2: specs for photography

The difference in price is important, as the Mini 2 sells for about half the price of the Air 2S. The Mini 2 weight is below the 250 grams threshold, therefore it can fly with less strict regulations in many countries, especially in urban areas

DJI Mini 2

Because of the big price difference and the more relaxed regulation, many will think that Mini 2 is the ideal drone for beginners, but it is not supplied with see nsors for obstacle avoidance, so a lot of care is needed when planning a flight

To remain below the threshold of 250 grams DJI had to shave grams wherever possible, so the Mini 2 doesn’t have any of the bells and whistles supplied with the Air 2S. The Mini 2 is not as powerful as the Air 2S, the wind resistance announced is 29 KMh against 38 for the Air 2S

DJI Air 2S

The sensor of the Mini 2 is ½.3”, very small for today’s standards. It can shoot photos at 12MP. The sensor of the Air 2S is 1” and can shoot photos at 20 MP, therefore we should expect better performance when cropping and reframing and more information in the colors and in the shadows

More info about photography with the Air 2s in my dedicated article

DJI Air 2s vs Mini 2 Automatic Exposure Bracketing

Both models have an Automatic Exposure Bracketing mode. In the Air 2S, five photos are taken in rapid succession at different exposure values, with an interval of 0.7 stops. In the case of the Mini 2, only 3 photos are taken. I have tested both models with photos in Automatic Exposure Bracketing

For editing and color grading all the images I have used the excellent Luminar Neo, the tool I use for editing and managing all my photos. Click on the link for an in-depth analysis of this program

Mini 3: AEB photos merged to HDR

With the Mini 2, the merged image always gives better results with less noise, richer colors, and a wider dynamic range. With the Air 2s, the single photos are so good that in many cases merging is not needed. But I prefer to always take photos in AEB just to make sure that I don’t accidentally get a badly exposed one

Air 2s: AEB photos merged to HDR

DJI Air 2s vs Mini 2 Photo Quality in Easy Light

Let’s be nice and start with friendly light conditions. This first photo is shot in the late afternoon with the sun to the left and slightly behind us

Air 2s and Mini 2 side by side

The Mini 2 does a good job, with warm colors, good detail, and a nice structure of the sky. With the Air 2S, the detail is astonishing, the colors very rich and natural, and the structure of the sky is excellent. Side by side we appreciate the job done by the Mini 2, but the Air 2 is on a different level

Air 2s and Mini 2 side by side at sunrise

The next few shots are taken at sunrise. Nice result here with the Mini 2 with good detail and very low noise, although the colors are a bit overtaken by the red-orange cast from the rising sun. There is also a touch of chromatic noise in the sky, but nothing to worry about

In the Air 2s, we notice richer and more natural colors. Zooming in there is more detail in the trees and the roofs of the buildings with the 2S

Air 2s and Mini 2 side by side at sunrise

In the next image the Mini 2 does again an excellent job, with very good detail and no noise at all in the shadows, but again the colors with the Air 2S are much richer and more natural, and the trees really stand out

Air 2s against the sun at sunset

The performance of the Air 2s in all departments is astonishing. Even against the full rising sun, the light on the trees in the foreground is magic. Even though the Mini 2 is doing well, in comparison the colors look flat

DJI Air 2s vs Mini 2 Photo Quality Against the Sun

Mini 2: sun outside the left edge

In this first image with the sun just outside the left edge with the Mini 2, close to the sun the detail is missing and the colors are washed out

Air 2s: sun outside the left edge

The Air 2S performs better and manages to maintain detail and colors except for the very left edge

Mini 2: sun on the left

This time the sun is in the frame and the photo taken with the Mini 2 is unusable, detail and color are gone

Air 2s: sun on the left

The result with the Air 2S is very good considering the conditions, detail and colors are good and the structure of the sky is excellent, despite the sun shining inside the frame

Mini 2: sun on the right

Now the sun is just outside the right part of the frame and once again the one with the Mini 2 is unusable

Air 2s: sun on the right

With the Air 2s the detail is preserved and the colors are beautiful

The extraordinary performance of the Air 2S against the sun is probably due not only to the bigger sensors and new technology, DJI and Hasselblad must also have improved considerably the lens, possibly using some coating to control flare

DJI Air 2s vs Mini 2 Photo Quality in Low Light

Mini 3 in low light at different ISO values

In low light, the image taken with the Mini 2 is quite good, and the quality doesn’t seem to deteriorate at a higher ISO value. ISO 1600 was something unheard of in prosumer drones equipped with the same sensor in previous models. There is of course some noise in the shadows, but the image is still very usable after denoising

Air 2s in low light at different ISO values

I decided to test the Air 2S in more difficult conditions. It was extremely dark and the result is excellent at every ISO value. Detail and color under these conditions are surprisingly good and noise is very low

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More Info and Examples in this Video


I am Vittorio Caramazza, aka Vicvideopic, the founder of this website and author of all the posts. I am a videographer and photographer contributing to several stock agencies. I am an Adobe Certified Expert in Photoshop and Lightroom. I have 10 years of experience with dron videography and photography. I was struck by drone syndrome in 2013. I have owned and tested in depth the following drones: Phantom 3, Phantom 4, Phantom 4 Pro, Mavic 2 Zoom, Mavic 2 Pro, Mavic Mini, Mini 2, Air 2, Air 2s, Autel Evo Nano Plus, Mavic 3, Mini 3 Pro, Mini 3. My home has turned into a breeding ground for drones. I am the owner of two YouTube channels specializing in Videography and Photography, with a focus on drones My main channel is VicVideopic (in English): My other channel is Drone Mitico, the Italian version.: I am currently based in Sicily (Southern Italy), but I tend to move quite often. After all, this is one of the main benefits of being a digital nomad…

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