Many are familiar with the hype around the Autel Evo Nano drone. Since its release in late 2021, it has sparked a lot of interest from drone enthusiasts on the internet.
It’s being called the best drone under 250 grams. Whether there is truth in those statements or not is something we’ll discover in this article, where I’ll do a detailed comparison of the DJI Mini 2 and its new direct competitor the Autel Evo Nano.
We’ll expand on some features of both the DJI mini 2 and the Autel Evo Nano below in this article, but I’ve prepared an overview of all the specs in a table that you can always go back to for reference.
|PARAMETERS||DJI MINI 2||AUTEL EVO NANO|
|Weight||249 grams||249 grams|
|Max video resolution||4K@30fps||4K@30fps|
|Photos mode||RAW + JPG||DNG + JPG|
|Live view quality ( 1km > )||Up to 1080p||Up to 2.7k|
|Wind resistance||Level 5||Level 5|
|Flight modes||Drone, Helix, Rocket, Circle, Boomerang||Rocket, Fade Away, Orbit, Flick|
|Obstacle avoidance||No||Yes, Back/Front/Below|
|Battery Life||31 minutes||28 minutes|
|FAA registration||Not required||Not required|
As you surely must already be thinking after seeing that table, the Evo nano comes at a higher price range than the DJI mini 2, for obvious reasons (which we’ll expand on).
While the DJI Mini 2 is currently sold in North America at $449, the Autel Evo Nano sits at a $649 price ($799 for the other model nano+, which is the same as the nano but with a better camera).
When all is said and done, the camera is still the number one deciding factor for many drone enthusiasts setting off to buy a drone as it’s the most significant feature of a drone.
Strictly speaking, there is no doubt that the Autel Evo Nano is equipped with a superior camera to that on the DJI Mini 2. If you’re a photographer, you might want to consider getting the Evo Nano instead of the Mini 2.
The Evo Nano is equipped with a 1/2-inch sensor which is class leading in a drone of this size and weight (not to mention the 1/1.28inch sensor of the Nano+, which is amazing for a drone of 249 grams to say the least).
A large image sensor is important in photography because it improves the overall image quality. In low-light situations, the Evo Nano’s larger sensor, along with a wider aperture and higher ISO range, makes for better quality photos than the DJI Mini 2.
One of the remarkable features of the Evo Nano’s camera, according to Autel, is that it’s equipped with an RYYB filter instead of the common Bayer filter. In a nutshell, RYYB filters are supposed to collect more light and, as a result, the camera produces better photos with more color detail, especially in low light circumstances.
Both drones are very well made and are aesthetically pleasing. They’re also both easy to fly and control due to their low weight.
The only problem people had with the Evo Nano’s design was that it came out in one color (bright orange). That’s no longer an issue since there are now 4 colors to choose from.
The controller is also radically different if you compare it with the DJI Mini 2’s controller. While the mini 2’s controller is bigger and a little bit “stiff”, the Evo Nano released something of a video games controller. You’ll feel like playing Xbox when holding it, it makes flight much more fun (and easier).
Both the Autel Evo Nano and the DJI Mini 2 are equipped with 3 flight modes: Novice, standard and sport.
The standard mode is the default mode in the Evo Nano; All features, including intelligent flight modes are available in the standard mode. It’s actually the same mode as “Novice” with only one difference which is the speed.
In Novice mode, the max speed of the Autel Evo Nano becomes 11mph while on the DJI mini 2 it’s 13mph.
Both the Evo Nano and the DJI Mini 2 can fly at their maximum speeds in the sports mode, which is 29mph and 35mph respectively. The drone commands also become more reactive.
Both drones are equipped with QuickShot, which is a collection of pre-programmed flight modes that allow users to make short cinematic video clips while keeping their hands free.
Both drones have a return home functionality, making them both good options for beginner drone pilots.
This is where the Autel Evo Nano has the DJI Mini 2 completely beat. The Evo Nano has a three way obstacle avoidance system (Below, Front, Back). For a 249 grams drone, having that kind of tech is impressive to say the least.
This makes the Autel Evo Nano a really good sub-250 grams drone for beginners who are prone to crash their drones.
Another functionality that the Autel Evo Nano has is the “Follow me” function. Using active image sensing and tracking, the Evo Nano can follow you (the pilot) or any other moving person or object until its batteries run out and they return home.
This is amazing for vloggers or for people who like to film themselves without holding the remote controller. The DJI mini 2 is lacking in this regard as it doesn’t have this functionality.
As you can see, there is truth to the hype over the Autel Evo Nano. Personally I think it’s probably the most cutting-edge 250g drone in the market right now, but that comes at a trade off which is the price.
At almost $300 more than the DJI Mini 2, the Autel Evo Nano isn’t exactly an entry-level drone and isn’t accessible to everyone. Which is why I believe the DJI Mini 2 will still hold its throne as the “Best drone under 250g”, simply because it’s cheaper and actually offers good features at that price range.
I’ve done an in-depth review of the Autel Evo Nano in a separate article, check it out to find out more about the drone and whether it’s for you.