Yes and No. Here’s why. Of course, this is just me trying to justify my tech purchases.
- DJI Mavic Air is still one of the most versatile drone designs and sizes (adventure friendly!)
- I get to use it for work aerial shots coverage
- Used it for covering Taal Volcano Eruption and now a volunteer for the BikeScouts disaster response team.
- The succeeding DJI drones design weren’t as game-changing in terms of form-factor since Mavic Air got released anyway
- The latest Mavic Mini (the entry-level consumer version) seems to be off with the wind speed in PH and remote signal reliability. For Mavic Air, there’s an FCC remote signal hack that improves the signal reception. I’d still recommend buying a second hand Mavic Pro or Mavic Air for ProSumer use if you plan to buy one soon.
- Brought it to Taiwan, Vietnam, and Shenzen China to cover my adventures! Didn’t risk bringing it to Bangkok though since several reports document that they confiscate drones in the airports. Shenzen, Taiwan, and Vietnam adventure shots on http://vlogs.techyjuan.ph
- Took a lot of exciting shots and saw different views of Manila and beyond published on instagram.com/rediscovermnl
- I used it as a talk demo for an “Innovation for Agriculture” at Phil Rice Research Institute. Show, don’t tell.
My Mavic Air isn’t enterprise-ready but the talk added more context for them to see an actual drone. Here’s one of what enterprise drones for agriculture look like:
- It’s still an early tech and expensive! (like most gadgets though) I bought it as post-grad school reward at PHP 50,000+. I think the current resell value is probably at PHP 30,000
- I only get to use it at most once a month. Prior to joining drone FB groups, I have about five friends who bought a DJI Mavic Pro drone. After purchasing, they barely got time to use it because of the work schedule (haha). Probably just once every quarter.
- I’m not monetizing it. So it might be better if you’re using it for work like photography or video projects ( Thank God I live near the scenic skylines of Intramuros and Pansit wires view of Escolta Heritage landmarks). Here’s a sample website with professional drone rental or services:
- We’re in a pandemic and a global recession. If you don’t have enough emergency fund runway and have more liquidity risks during this pandemic, buying a drone might not have to be your purchase priority (nope, not counted as ‘tech essential’).
So. The important question. Was it worth it? If I were to teleport back, will I still buy it or not?
Yes. Probably should have bought earlier so I could have covered Korea, Batad, Penang, and Palawan trips as well 😛
Two years of adventures unfolding and new heights with DJI Mavic Air:
Wondering what my drone shots at Shenzen, China looked like?
Enjoy it below: