A Picture of DJI Air 3 Design
A Picture of DJI Air 3
A Picture of DJI Air 3 Camera Gimbal
A Picture of DJI Air 3
  1. A Picture of DJI Air 3 Design
  2. A Picture of DJI Air 3
  3. A Picture of DJI Air 3 Camera Gimbal
  4. A Picture of DJI Air 3

DJI Air 3 Review

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4.8/5Overall Score

Quick Summary

DJI's popular and budget-friendly Mini drone series has been a crowd favourite, but the company is now refocusing on its mid-sized Air series. Priced at $1,099, the Air 3 stands out as the first in the lineup featuring a dual-lens camera and comprehensive obstacle sensors. It delivers impressive overall performance and is a solid option, especially if you require a mid-telephoto lens. However, when compared to our preferred choice for enthusiasts and creators, the more economical DJI Mini 3 Pro priced at $759, the Air 3 doesn't offer enough unique features to justify its higher cost.

  • Dual-Lens Camera
  • Obstacle Avoidance
  • Extended Flight Time (46 minutes)
  • Advanced GPS and Safety Features
  • Higher price point
  • Requires FAA registration
  • Lack of adjustable aperture

In the dynamic realm of drones, DJI’s latest unveiling, the Air 3, has emerged as the much-anticipated revelation, confirming all the speculations that have circulated within the drone enthusiast community. Priced at $1,099 and boasting a plethora of upgrades, this drone is set to redefine aerial photography and videography.

The DJI Air 3 doesn’t just sport a new look; it comes equipped with two cameras, signaling a significant leap in functionality. With an impressive 46 minutes of battery life, improved connectivity through Ocusync 4, and an innovative controller, this drone is not merely an incremental upgrade – it’s a technological leap forward.

Evolution of DJI’s Air Series

DJI, a dominant player in the consumer drone market, continually challenges itself to push the boundaries of innovation. The evolution from the Air series to the Mini line has been marked by a quest for smaller, more portable drones with improved battery life and enhanced obstacle avoidance features. The latest addition to this lineage, the DJI Air 3, takes a notable step forward by incorporating not one but two cameras, aligning with the trend set by its predecessors, the Mavic 3 and Mavic 3 Pro.

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DJI Air 3

– Dual-camera system
– Comprehensive obstacle avoidance
– Impressive battery life
– Foldable design
– Beginner Friendly
– Safety features

DJI Air 3: Design

The DJI Air 3 stands as a testament to DJI’s signature design excellence, embodying the unmistakable aesthetic that characterizes their drone lineup. With its dark-gray airframe and folding design, the drone seamlessly marries style with practicality, making it an undeniable standout in the realm of consumer drones.

The drone’s dark gray airframe is a visual identifier that places it firmly within the DJI family. The folding design, a hallmark of DJI’s innovation, allows the Air 3 to transform from a compact folded state, measuring 8.1 x 3.9 x 3.6 inches (207 × 100.5 × 91.1 mm), perfect for storage and transportation, to a ready-for-flight unfolded state at 10.2 x 12.8 x 4.2 inches (258.8 × 326 × 105.8 mm). This design choice not only ensures portability but also adds an element of convenience for users on the move.

A Picture of DJI Air 3

While the DJI Air 3 is more compact compared to the Mavic 3 models, it doesn’t compromise on sturdiness. Weighing in at 25.4 ounces (720g), it strikes a balance between portability and durability. The drone’s weight triggers a C1 rating for users in the EU and certain non-EU European countries, highlighting compliance with regulatory standards.

Contrary to its compact size, the Air 3 boasts a maximum wind resistance of 27 mph, a considerable upgrade from the Mini 3 models. During testing with gusts just below this speed, the drone exhibited remarkable stability, showcasing its capability to handle challenging weather conditions without missing a beat.

A Picture of DJI Air 3

Battery life receives a significant boost with the Air 3, featuring a maximum advertised flight time of up to 46 minutes. Powered by a 4241 mAh Intelligent Flight Battery, this drone outshines its predecessors, providing an extended aerial experience. Testing in controlled, wind-free conditions consistently demonstrated flight times averaging around 35 minutes, ensuring ample time for capturing breathtaking aerial footage.

The DJI Air 3 offers users three distinct controller options, catering to diverse preferences. The DJI RC-N2 controller, though requiring a smartphone for display, functions seamlessly with Android and iOS smartphones running the DJI Fly app. For those seeking enhanced features, two smart controller options are available, with the more advanced option providing a myriad of functionalities.

A Picture of DJI Air 3 RC Controller

For enthusiasts seeking comprehensive kits, the two smart controller options come bundled as Fly More Bundles. These bundles contribute to a seamless and enriched drone experience, ensuring users have everything they need for extended flights and diverse shooting scenarios.

In essence, the DJI Air 3’s design isn’t just about aesthetics; it’s a thoughtful blend of style and substance. From its foldable design for on-the-go convenience to its robust build and extended flight time, this drone encapsulates DJI’s commitment to delivering a superior aerial experience. Whether you’re a seasoned drone enthusiast or a novice exploring the skies, the DJI Air 3 stands as a symbol of design brilliance and unmatched functionality in the ever-evolving world of consumer drones.

Camera Capabilities

DJI, a trailblazer in the consumer drone market, consistently pushes the boundaries of innovation, setting industry standards with each iteration. The Air series, designed to meet the demand for compact and portable drones, has reached new heights with the introduction of the DJI Air 3. This latest addition to the lineup features a groundbreaking dual-camera system, aligning with the trajectory set by its predecessors and the Mavic 3 Pro. The evolution from single-camera setups and the incorporation of dual-camera technology signify DJI’s commitment to providing users with an advanced imaging experience.

A Picture Shot on DJI Air 3
Shot On DJI Air 3

Dual-Camera System

The highlight of the DJI Air 3 undoubtedly lies in its dual-camera system, housed on a three-axis gimbal. This marks a departure from the single-camera setups of earlier models. Leveraging DJI’s expertise in miniaturization, the main 24mm F1.7 lens, inherited from the Mini 3 Pro, collaborates with the short telephoto 70mm F2.8, reminiscent of the lens found on the Mavic 3 Pro. Each lens is accompanied by a Quad Bayer Type 1/1.3 sensor, ensuring a consistent standard of picture and video quality across various shooting conditions.

A Picture Captured Using Dual Cameras of DJI Air 3

The dual-camera setup opens up new possibilities for creative expression, allowing users to capture scenes from multiple perspectives. Whether it’s the wide-angle lens for expansive landscapes or the telephoto lens for detailed shots of distant subjects, the DJI Air 3 provides unparalleled versatility in aerial imaging.

Creative Control with ND Filters

While the lenses feature fixed apertures, providing a level of consistency in performance, users seeking additional control can opt for a set of four ND filters priced at $99. This supplementary accessory empowers enthusiasts to fine-tune exposure settings, offering creative flexibility in different lighting conditions. The option to enhance control through ND filters further positions the Air 3 as a versatile tool for photographers and videographers striving for perfection in their craft.

Gimbal Tilt Range

The gimbal’s tilt range is a standout feature, echoing the capabilities of the Mini 3 series. Users can point the camera straight down at a 90-degree angle or tilt it up to 60 degrees. This flexibility allows for diverse shooting perspectives, catering to a range of creative preferences. The ability to capture top-down views or tilt the camera for dynamic angles adds a layer of sophistication to the Air 3’s capabilities, ensuring users can achieve their desired shots with precision.

Dual Cameras on a Three-Axis Gimbal

A Picture of DJI Air 3 Camera Gimbal

The DJI Air 3’s dual-camera system takes full advantage of DJI’s ongoing miniaturization efforts. Both cameras share space on a three-axis gimbal, ensuring stability and precision during flight. The main 24mm F1.7 lens, inherited from the Mini 3 Pro, boasts a wide aperture, ideal for low-light conditions and achieving a shallow depth of field. On the other hand, the short telephoto 70mm F2.8 lens replicates the Mavic 3 Pro’s capabilities, allowing users to capture distant subjects with clarity.

Each lens is backed by a Quad Bayer Type 1/1.3 sensor, ensuring consistent picture and video quality. The Quad Bayer technology enhances the camera’s performance in challenging lighting conditions, delivering vibrant and detailed images. The fixed apertures of the lenses provide a predictable level of performance, but for users seeking additional creative control, a set of four ND filters is available at an additional cost of $99.

In conclusion, the DJI Air 3’s dual-camera system represents a revolutionary step forward in the evolution of consumer drones. The integration of a dual-camera setup, coupled with thoughtful design considerations, regulatory awareness, and the option for enhanced control through ND filters, positions the DJI Air 3 as a versatile and powerful tool for aerial photographers and videographers.

Functionality and Advanced Obstacle Avoidance

The DJI Air 3, a cutting-edge addition to the drone market, not only boasts an impressive dual-camera system but also stands out for its exceptional functionality and advanced obstacle avoidance features. From its innovative Autopilot Assist System to its comprehensive obstacle-sensing capabilities, the DJI Air 3 is designed to redefine the drone flying experience.

APAS 5.0

Equipped with the 5th-generation Advanced Autopilot Assist System (APAS 5.0), the Air 3 takes autonomous flight to new heights. This system, coupled with a set of cameras on its undercarriage, ensures forward and rear obstacle sensors cover a full 360 degrees. This comprehensive coverage aids in avoiding crashes when flying low to the ground or through areas with numerous obstacles such as trees.

Configurable Obstacle Avoidance

A Picture of Advanced Obstacle Avoidance of DJI Air 3

Users have the flexibility to configure the DJI Air 3’s obstacle avoidance settings according to their preferences. The drone can intelligently navigate around obstacles, ensuring a seamless and crash-free flight experience. Whether it’s stopping in place or maneuvering around obstacles with precision, the Air 3 adapts to the user’s chosen configuration.

Impressive Maneuverability

In real-world testing, setting the drone to bypass obstacles with APAS 5.0 showcased the Air 3’s impressive maneuverability. After a cautious initial period, the drone effortlessly navigated around backyard obstructions, including trees, buildings, and vehicles. This feature grants users the confidence to fly with creativity, knowing that the Air 3 can adeptly handle complex environments.

ActiveTrack Feature

A Picture of Activetrack 5.0 of DJI Air 3

The obstacle sensors seamlessly integrate with the ActiveTrack feature, allowing the Air 3 to function as a follow-me drone. Adventure enthusiasts will appreciate the tight view provided by the 70mm lens when capturing dynamic footage. ActiveTrack excels in tracking people and vehicles, ensuring smooth and precise follow-me capabilities. Users can choose from different perspectives, including the option to have the drone follow from in front of, behind, or to the side of the subject.

Spotlight Mode

The DJI Air 3 introduces a new mode called Spotlight, promising more dynamic tracking. While not as successful in initial tests as the standard ActiveTrack mode, Spotlight aims to provide enhanced tracking capabilities. Users may find this mode a valuable addition for capturing dynamic and engaging footage, further expanding the creative possibilities with the Air 3.

Safety Features

The DJI Air 3 prioritizes safety with an array of features. The GPS hardware enhances safety by tracking the drone’s location and altitude, guiding it home in case of communication interruption. The transmission range of the O4 system extends up to an impressive 12.4 miles, ensuring reliable communication during flights.

Geofencing with DJI FlySafe

DJI FlySafe, a geofence system, is another safety feature that prevents the drone from taking off in restricted airspace. It includes an authorization system to unlock flight in areas near airports or other restricted zones. While casual pilots appreciate its ability to keep them out of trouble, licensed pilots may find the unlocking procedures cumbersome, especially if they already have permission to fly.

DJI AirSense and Remote ID

The DJI Air 3 supports DJI AirSense, utilizing an ADS-B receiver to alert users to nearby manned aircraft, adding an extra layer of safety. Additionally, the drone complies with Remote ID, an FAA requirement effective from September, broadcasting its location on a public channel for easy tracking by authorities.

Flight Modes and Ease of Use

The Air 3 offers three flight modes—Cine, Normal, and Sport—catering to different speeds and control sensitivities for various situations. Whether you’re a beginner or an advanced pilot, the Air 3’s intuitive controls and flight features ensure a user-friendly experience.

In conclusion, the DJI Air 3’s functionality and advanced obstacle avoidance capabilities make it a standout choice in the drone market. From its configurable obstacle avoidance settings to the seamless integration of ActiveTrack, the Air 3 caters to both beginners and seasoned pilots. Safety features, impressive maneuverability, and various flight modes further contribute to the drone’s appeal, positioning it as a versatile and reliable tool for capturing stunning aerial footage.

Size Matters!

The original Mavic Air was constrained by its compact size, preventing the integration of a dual-camera gimbal. However, with the success of the 249g Mini line, DJI’s engineers have gradually allowed the Air series to expand in size. The Air 3 emerges as the largest in the series, measuring 3.9 by 3.6 by 8.2 inches (HWD), surpassing the dimensions of its predecessor, the Mavic Air 2. Despite the increase in size, the drone remains reasonably portable at 1.6 pounds, ensuring it can easily find a place in your camera bag.

FAA Registration 

It’s crucial to note that the Air 3 requires FAA registration, imposing a $5 fee every three years for recreational pilots. This minor inconvenience, however, can be avoided with the Mini 3 Pro and other drones weighing 249g or less. Travel enthusiasts, especially, may find the Mini 3 Pro more appealing due to the potential regulatory challenges in certain countries. Professional drone operators, regardless of weight, need to obtain a remote pilot certificate.

Exploring Alternatives

For those considering alternatives, the Mini 3 Pro offers similar picture quality and obstacle avoidance support, albeit without upward coverage. The Mavic 3 Classic, priced at $1,599, stands as an upgrade option with a Four Thirds camera, aperture control, and Hasselblad color, catering particularly to photography enthusiasts. Another contender is the Autel Robotics Evo Lite+ at $1,279, equipped with forward and aft obstacle sensors and a 20MP Type 1 camera with an adjustable f-stop.

 A Picture of DJI Air 2s
Mavic 3 Classic


A Picture of DJI Mavic 3 Classic
Evo Lite+


In conclusion, the DJI Air 3 introduces a new chapter in the evolution of consumer drones, emphasizing a dual-camera system within a compact yet expanded design. As the drone market continues to soar, DJI’s commitment to innovation ensures that enthusiasts and professionals alike have a diverse range of options to elevate their aerial experiences.

Should You Buy?

The Air 3 occupies a unique position, offering extensive functionality beyond the Mini 3 Pro despite its larger size and weight. At the same time, it shares similarities with the Mavic 3 in terms of features, though lacking an adjustable aperture in the main camera. This positions it as an ideal choice for those seeking a drone with more capabilities than the Mini models, featuring a dual camera. Simultaneously, it caters to users looking for something slightly smaller, lighter, and more budget-friendly compared to the Mavic 3 models.

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DJI Air 3

– Dual-camera system
– Comprehensive obstacle avoidance
– Impressive battery life
– Foldable design
– Beginner Friendly
– Safety features

This drone proves to be exceptional, delivering impressive image quality for both photos and videos while providing the necessary power to navigate through challenging windy conditions. The inclusion of a dual camera with 24mm and 70mm lenses adds versatility, allowing users to effortlessly capture distant subjects. Moreover, this feature proves invaluable when you need to photograph or film subjects from a distance, adhering to safety and legal considerations.

Final Verdict

In summary, the Air 3 stands out as a fantastic choice, balancing functionality, image quality, and size considerations. Whether you are upgrading from the Mini-series or seeking a more compact alternative to the Mavic 3, the Air 3 offers a compelling combination of features for a diverse range of drone enthusiasts.

The commitment to innovation showcased in the Air 3 builds upon the success of its predecessors and the Mavic 3 Pro, making it a standout choice for professionals and enthusiasts alike. The perfect balance of design, portability, regulatory compliance, and advanced imaging capabilities makes the DJI Air 3 a game-changer in the world of drone technology. As drone technology continues to evolve, the Air 3 stands at the forefront, embodying the pinnacle of DJI’s dedication to redefining industry standards and providing users with unparalleled creative possibilities in aerial imaging.

Read More: DJI Inspire 3 Review.