DJI Mavic Pro vs Gopro Karma Drone Review | Best Drone for Beginners

dji-mavic-pro-vs-gopro-karma-reviewIt has been a crazy month in the drone world. First there was Photokina 2016, then the release of GoPro’s Karma drone, and lastly DJI unveiled its Mavic Pro compact Drone. Some serious competitors for the best beginner drone just hit the market. What better time to do a DJI Mavic Pro vs GoPro karma drone review?  So what better way to help you decide than pitting them against each other? This is an unbiased review of the DJI Mavic Pro VS Gopro Karma Drone. Who will be the winner?? Are you ready for a dogfight?

DJI Mavic Pro vs GoPro Karma who is the Smallest and Fastest

The DJI Mavic Pro when folded up is just a hair bigger than the new iPhone 7+ box, it is actually small enough to fit into Casey Neisat’s pocket. Don’t believe me watch his video below. Official dimensions are 83mm x 83mm x 198mm (HxWxL), the mavic pro drone weighs in at 743grams.

The GoPro Karma was the first drone that could actually fit into a back pack. That is unitl DJI released the Mavic Pro. The with tKarma is 89.3mm x 224.3mm x 365.2mm (HxWxL) and weighs in at 1006grams. Slightly wider and heavier than its DJI counterpart. To be fair here is Casey playing with the GoPro Karma drone.

Top speed of each drones is as follows:
DJI Mavic Pro – 40mph
GoPro Karma – 35mph

The Smallest and Fastest Winner – DJI Mavic Pro no questions asked. It is smaller and faster than the GoPro karma.

DJI Mavic Pro vs GoPro Karma Flying Time and Flying Range (distance):

dji-mavic-pro-vs-gopro-karma

DJI claims a flight time of 27minutes and a maximum flying distance of 8miles or 13km. How is this even possible?? DJI relies on OcuSync long-range-transmission technology, which is capable of relaying a signal up to 4.3 miles with line-of-sight all while transmitting 720p HD video. 1080p HD transmission is possible in the short range mode.

But how does the DJI cover 8 miles??

The OcuSync scans a range of available frequencies to find the one with the least interference and use it to give you more reliability and control over the quadcopter.  Another feature of the OcuSync is that it transfers vital statistics of the Mavic Pro to you in real time while you are flying. You can also download photos and videos up to 40Mbps while flying as well.

DJI also offers the DJI Go App for smartphones which you can use to control the drone at short ranges. If you want to extend the Mavic Pro to its limits you will need to add a tiny remote controller which increases the range by 4 miles or 7km, you can link a mobile device to it and view a live feed in 1080p from the drone.

gopro-karma-vs-dji-mavic-pro

The GoPro Karma has an estimated flight time of 20minutes and the control range is limited to 0.6 miles or 0.97km

Winner of DJI Mavic Pro vs GoPro Karma review, Flight distance and Flight time challenge: DJI Mavic Pro drone, it flies longer and almost 8 times further than the GoPro can.

DJI Mavic Pro vs GoPro Karma Camera and Gimbal Challenge:

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The GoPro Karma comes without a camera but can be fitted with either the new Hero 5 Session or the GoPro Hero 5. For comparison purposes we will use the Hero 5 camera. The GoPro Hero 5 with a 12MP CMOS sensor that is capable of capturing UHD (3840 x 2160) and comes with a range of FOV (Field Of View) options. The widest being 17.2mm and the narrowest is 34.4mm, with a medium FOV setting of 21.9mm also available. The camera has a f/2.8 aperture.

In 2.7K widescreen and lower resolutions you can use narrower FOV options including Medium, Narrow, and the new Linear mode (only available in 2.7K and 1080p settings), which corrects the lens’s barrel distortion. The Karma has the ability to manually control the ISO and shutter speeds.

GoPro also allows you to shoot in the Protune mode which gives you more flexibility when it comes to grading your footage. The GoPro Hero 5 can capture up to 120fps in Full HD. The GoPro Hero 5 records at up to 60 Mbps.

The DJI Mavic Pro uses a DCI 4K (4096 x 2160) capable 1/2.3” CMOS camera with a 28 mm f/2.2 lens that has a FOV of 78.8°. The minimum focus distance is 50cm or 1.6ft and it records up to 60 Mbps in MP4, MOV (MPEG-4 AVC/H.264). It can capture up to 96fps in Full HD, but in DCI 4K you are limited to only 24fps.

dji-mavic-pro-gimbal-cameraWhen DJI introduced the mavic pro then introduced something else pretty spectacular that day too. The New 3-axis gimbal on the Mavic Pro is smallest high-precision gimbal DJI has ever produced. The Mavic drone has brushless motors on all three axis to eliminate shake caused by movements of the drone. One kicker, it is non removable, yep it can’t be removed from the drone like the gimbal on the GoPro karma.

The Karma has a detachable gimbal that can be used with the Karma motorized grip when removed from the drone. This allows you to capture solid stable footage on the ground as well as in the air. The karma handheld grip gives you full functionality over the camera while shooting, including shutter speed, ISO, and file format.

GoPro Karma Drone vs DJI Mavic Pro Camera and Gimbal Challenge Winner: GoPro Karma. GoPro’s detachable gimbal, wide array of FOV options and Protune its hard not to choose GoPro here.

DJI Mavic Pro vs GoPro Karma Features:

Never have we seen so many features packed into such a small drone? The Mavic Pro is loaded with all kinds of features from collision avoidance, GPS, ultrasound, dual redundant IMUs and Active Track Subject Tracking modes. They also added a new selfie mode with gestures to control the camera and a tripod mode that caps the maxium speed at 2.2mph.

DJI dulled the stick sensitivity of the remote controller to allow for better framing while filming, but this also helps you for flying indoors or other small spaces where higher speeds make it more challenging to fly a drone indoors.

DJI added a new Terrain Follow mode that uses hight measurements gathered bye the ultrasound sensors and the downward facing cmaeras to keep the drone flying at the same height above you regardless if you are going uphill or downhill. The Mavic will maintain the same distance from you.

Lets talk about the GoPro Karma’s features. First off the Karma does not have a colision avoidance system, this is going to be a huge downfall for first time flyers or if you are considering the karma for your beginner drone. However the Karam does have the Gopro Passenger App. The app allows one person to fly the drone while aonther uses the app to control and change the camera settings. The Karma is lacking in features when you compare it to the Mavic Pro, however they might have a decent niche market nailed down with filmmakers. As one person can focus on flying while another makes sure you get a perfect shot.

Some other features the Karma includes is the Auto Take off and Auto Landing, Return to Home, and return to Home when you lose signal or battery is running low. GoPro also built in a new set of Auto shot paths such as Orbit, Cable Cam, Reveal and Dronie. But they didn’t include a follow me function one thing the DJI mavic pro drone does have.

GoPro Karma vs DJI Mavic Pro Features Winner: DJI Mavic Pro, with the collision avoidance system and the follow me shot feature the DJI wins out here. Although we think GoPro might secure a new niche market with filmmakers with the new GoPro Passenger App.

DJI Mavic Pro Drone vs GoPro Karma Drone Remote controls:

The Karma uses an X-box inspired gamepad controller to fly the drone. Included is a flip up touch screen that is small and compact compared to drone controllers of the past. Unlike the Mavic the Karma has a built in touch screen. With the Mavic Pro you have to use your smart phone or tablet to be able to view the camera on the drone while flying. The Karma’s controller is limited to 3,280ft or 1,000 meters.

The DJI Mavic uses DJI Go app to control your Mavic while flying. When you connect your smartphone or tablet to the Mavic Pro it shows you everything the quadcopter sees in real time. The Mavic also has a feature that alloys you to fly the drone without the controller and use virtual joysticks on your smartphone or tablet. The Mavic also gives you full access of all its intelligent flight modes, TapFly, Trace, Spotlight, Profile, and Circle right from your phone. The mavic pro has a control range of 4.3miles.

GoPro Karma vs DJI Mavic Remote Control Winner: Tie

GoPro Karma vs DJI Mavic Pro Price battle:

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The DJI Mavic Pro is $999 US, and includes:

  • DJI Mavic Pro
  • Remote Controller
  • Intelligent Flight Battery for Mavic Quadcopter
  • 3 x 8330 Quick-Release Folding Propellers for Mavic Drone
  • Gimbal Clamp
  • Charger
  • AC Power Cable for Charger
  • 16GB microSD Card
  • Micro-USB Cable
  • RC Cable with Lightning Connector
  • RC Cable with Micro-USB Connector
  • 2 x RC Cable Slider

 

gopro-karma-drone-review01The GoPro Karma is $1099.99 US, and includes:

  • Karma Quadcopter with Harness for HERO5 Black
  • Karma Harness for GoPro HERO5 Black
  • Karma Controller with Touch Display
  • Karma Stabilizer
  • Karma Grip Handle
  • Karma Charger
  • Karma Battery
  • 6 x Propellers
  • Karma Mounting Ring
  • Karma Case
  • Limited 1-Year Warranty
  • HERO5 Black
  • The Frame for HERO5 Black
  • Rechargeable Battery for HERO5 Black
  • Curved Adhesive Mount
  • Flat Adhesive Mount
  • Mounting Buckle
  • USB Cablle

DJI Mavic Pro vs GoPro Karma Price Winner:

Tie, The GoPro Karma looks like the better value upfront. I mean after all you get the drone and removable gimbal and camera for only $100 more than the DJI. But if you are in the market for your first drone then the removable gimbal is just and added bonus. I would put my decision more heavily on the collision avoidance system in the DJI. It si definitely going to save you some money in the long run. .

Conclusion:

So which drone is the best drone for you. Well if this is going to be your first drone purchase then I would go with the DJI Mavic Pro. If you are going to use the drone for commercial or sport related events then the Karma is the clear winner. The Hero 5 Camera is a winner in itself, pair it with the karma drone and removable gimbal and I guarantee you can capture some awesome shots.
Comment below and tell us what you think.

Summary
Review Date
Reviewed Item
DJI Mavic Pro
Author Rating
5
  1. Harvey Heath October 14, 2016 at 8:47 pm

    Thanks Matt for sharing such a great post. I look forward to own a GoPro Karma

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