DJI Mavic 3 Classic: everything you need to know

One year after the Mavic 3 declined in two versions standard and Cine, DJI releases, a little against all expectations, a new version of its high-end drone, the Mavic 3 Classic. First observation: the telephoto lens has disappeared, and the price has dropped. So how is this new model different? What is it worth and is it right for you? All the answers in this article.

DJI Mavic 3 Classic: how does it differ from the standard Mavic 3?

 DJI Mavic 3 ClassicDJI Mavic 3DJI Mavic 3 Cine
CameraCMOS 4/3 20MP
Equivalent 24 mm Aperture f/2.8 to f/11
CMOS 4/3 20MP
Equivalent 24 mm Aperture f/2.8 to f/11
CMOS 4/3 20MP
24 mm equivalent
Aperture f/2.8 to f/11
Photo resolution20 MP20 MP20 MP
Video resolution5.1K up to 50 fps
4K up to 120 fps
5.1K up to 50 fps
4K up to 120 fps
5.1K up to 50 fps
4K up to 120 fps
Digital Zoom3X4X (main camera)
28X (telephoto lens)
4X (main camera)
28X (telephoto lens)
Video formatsMP4/MOV
(MPEG-4 AVC/H.264, HEVC/H.265)
MP4/MOV
(MPEG-4 AVC/H.264, HEVC/H.265)
MP4/MOV
(MPEG-4 AVC/H.264, HEVC/H.265)
MOV
(Apple ProRes 422 HQ/422/422 LT)
Battery capacity5000mAh5000mAh5000mAh
Maximum flight time46 minutes46 minutes46 minutes
Video transmissionO3+O3+O3+
Maximum transmission distanceFCC : 15 km
CE : 8 km
FCC : 15 km
CE : 8 km
FCC : 15 km
CE : 8 km
Internal storage8 GB8 GB1 TB
Dimensions221 x 96.3 x 90.3 mm (folded)
347.5 x 283 x 107.7 mm (unfolded)
221 x 96.3 x 90.3 mm (folded)
347.5 x 283 x 107.7 mm (unfolded)
221 x 96.3 x 90.3 mm (folded)
347.5 x 283 x 107.7 mm (unfolded)
Weight895g895g899g
Price1499€ (drone only)
1599€ (with DJI RC-N1 remote control)
1749€ (with DJI RC remote control)
1929€ (with DJI RC-N1 radio control)
2629€ (Bundle Fly More)
4799€ (Premium Bundle)

The main difference of the new DJI Mavic 3 Classic is its simplified camera module. Indeed, compared to its predecessors, the Mavic 3 and Mavic 3 Cine, it does not have the telephoto lens located above the main camera and therefore no digital zoom up to 28X.

To summarize, here are the 4 differences between the DJI Mavic 3 Classic and its 2 predecessors:

  • no telephoto lens (and 28X zoom)
  • no support for Apple ProRes codecs (only available on the Mavic 3 Cine)
  • no integrated 1TB hard drive (only available on the Mavic 3 Cine)
  • A more affordable price! 😁

DJI Mavic 3 Classic: the design

dji mavic 3 classic design
Weight895 g
Dimensions (folded, without propellers) (L x W x H)221 x 96.3 x 90.3 mm
Dimensions (unfolded, without propellers) (L x W x H)347.5 x 283 x 107.7 mm

Design-wise, it’s not complicated: the DJI Mavic 3 Classic is identical to the Mavic 3, with one exception: there is no second lens above the main camera. The camera block includes only the main camera with its Hasselblad sensor, which is exactly the same as on the Mavic 3 and Mavic 3 Cine models.

Otherwise, the three Mavic 3s (Standard, Cine, and Classic) are identical in every way and feature the same folding design that is now classic of drones produced by DJI, with their four arms that fold against the body for easy storage and transport and unfold to allow the drone to be ready to fly.

The battery still slides into the back of the drone, and above it are still the USB-C port as well as the microSD card slot. The dimensions of the Mavic 3 Classic do not differ from those of its predecessors, and its weight is 895g, as for the standard Mavic 3, while the Mavic 3 Cine weighs 4 small grams more, most likely due to its SSD hard drive.

DJI Mavic 3 Classic: in flight

Maximum speed21 m/s
Max. ascent speed8 m/s
Max. descent speed6 m/s
Max. wind resistance12 m/s
Obstacle sensorsOmnidirectional detection system
+ infrared sensor under the drone
Batteries5000 mAh
Max. flight time46 minutes
Max. hovering time40 minutes

Features

Naturally, we find all the flight modes and intelligent functions of the standard Mavic 3. These include the famous QuickShots, automated flight modes that make it easy to create professional video effects, Hyperlapse mode for creating time-lapse videos, and subject tracking with ActiveTrack.

However, a new function has been added: the Cruise Control mode, which allows you to lock in a constant flight path and speed. No need to direct the drone and the camera at the same time, you can now focus only on framing the image.

DJI also says it has improved the RTH mode, which allows the drone to return automatically to its starting point. In Advanced RTH mode, the Mavic 3 Classic uses its obstacle sensors to scan the surrounding environment and return more safely and efficiently. However, we did not see any real difference with the RTH mode present on the standard Mavic 3.

Note that these new features appear with the new firmware update released at the same time as the drone, so it is quite possible that they are also found on other versions of the Mavic 3.

Obstacle detection

The Mavic 3 Classic inherits the same omnidirectional obstacle detection system as the standard and Cine Mavic 3s. The last born of the DJI factories can thus, thanks to its 8 visual sensors, detect everything that is 360° around it, down, up, forward, backward, left and right.

It also supports the APAS 5.0 obstacle avoidance system, which allows it to avoid any obstacle in its path. As with previous models, you can choose between the safer Normal mode, where the drone will avoid obstacles with a greater margin of safety, and the more fluid and visually pleasing Agile mode, but a little more risky.

Battery and flight time

The battery of the DJI Mavic 3 Classic is identical to that of the standard and Cine Mavic 3, no change on that side. Therefore, the maximum flight time will be the same as in the previous versions, namely 46 minutes in optimal conditions, and more concretely between 30 and 35 minutes depending on factors such as flight speed and wind.

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DJI Mavic 3 Classic : the image

SensorCMOS 4/3 20 MP
Lens24 mm equivalent, FOV 84°, Aperture f/2.8 to f/11
Max. image size5280 x 3956
Photo resolution20 MP
Max. video resolution5.1K up to 50 fps
4K up to 120 fps
FHD up to 200 fps
ISO range100 to 6400 (Photo, Normal Video and Slow Motion)
100 to 12800 (Night Mode)
Photo formatJPEG
DNG (RAW)
Video formatMP4/MOV (MPEG-4 AVC/H.264, HEVC/H.265)
Max. bit rate200 Mb/s
Color profileNormal
HLG
D-Log
D-Log M
Digital Zoom3x

As the DJI Mavic 3 Classic is equipped with the same Hasselblad CMOS 4/3 sensor as the Mavic 3 standard and Cine models, it has nothing to envy them in terms of the quality of the photos and videos it is capable of capturing.

This sensor, the largest present on a consumer drone, can film in 5.1K up to 50 frames/s, in 4K up to 120 frames/s, and in Full HD up to 200 frames/s. There is also a C4K format available which is slightly wider than the traditional 4K format. All this with a maximum video rate of 200 Mb/s. As we already said in our test of the standard Mavic 3, this sensor certainly offers the best image quality on the market for a foldable drone.

The telephoto lens offering a 28X digital zoom has been removed on this new Mavic 3, so you won’t be able to zoom in on your photos and videos as much as with previous models. The main camera still has a digital zoom, but it is limited to 3X.

On the other hand, a small novelty makes its appearance: the night mode. The latter allows you to go up to ISO 12800 (instead of 6400) and thus offers a higher sensitivity than the normal mode, allowing you to capture even more light and detail in low light conditions. Note that this mode is only available with the normal image profile and only in 4K at 30fps, which is still quite interesting.

DJI Mavic 3 Classic: the price

dji mavic 3 classic pack standard

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Drone only (without radio control)1199€
Pack with DJI RC-N1 remote control1279€
Pack with DJI RC remote control1399€

As you can see, the big advantage of this new Mavic 3 Classic is that it gives you access to the vast majority of what a Mavic 3 has to offer, at a much more competitive price, starting at €1199 for the drone alone, and €1279 with the DJI RC-N1 radio control.

The different packs

Here are the different packages available on the DJI website, with their prices at the time of writing this article:

  • the drone alone (€1199): as the name suggests, this is the drone delivered on its own, without any accessories. This is the ideal plan if you already have a compatible remote control (DJI RC, RC-N1 or RC Pro), we think for example of owners of a Mini 3 Pro or an Air 2S who want to upgrade to a larger sensor.
  • the standard pack (€1279): in this pack, the drone is supplied with the standard DJI RC-N1 remote control and standard accessories (a battery, 3 pairs of spare propellers, a charger, data cables, 2 spare joysticks and a protective cover).
  • the package with DJI RC (€1399): here, the drone is supplied with the superb DJI RC remote control and its integrated 5.5-inch screen, and the same accessories as the previous package (apart from the data cables, which are no longer necessary as you no longer have to connect your smartphone).

The accessories

DJI usually offers, with all its drones, a Fly More package that includes more accessories, such as extra batteries and propellers. In the case of the Mavic 3 Classic, this pack is offered separately at a price of 599€, and includes 2 additional batteries, a charging station, a car charger, 3 pairs of propellers, and a carrying bag that can be converted into a backpack.

Regarding the remote controls, you can use the Mavic 3 Classic with the DJI RC-N1 basic (without screen) and the DJI RC (with screen) as explained above, but also with the DJI RC Pro, a more advanced remote control delivered with the Mavic 3 Cine but also available separately.

If you want to know more about the DJI RC, we invite you to read the complete test that we have dedicated to it (click here).

Finally, it’s also worth noting that DJI has updated the Mavic 3 Classic to make it compatible with some of the manufacturer’s accessories for FPV flight, with first-person image feedback right in front of your eyes. Accessories include the DJI Goggles Integra Motion Bundle, available at €529, which includes the DJI Goggles Integra and the RC Motion 2 radio controller, which resembles an aircraft control stick and can be controlled with one hand.

As the Mavic 3 Classic is almost identical to the standard Mavic 3, it is important to note that the accessories of the Mavic 3 are (almost) all compatible with its little brother, except for everything related to the camera module, such as filters or the wide angle lens.

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Conclusion: should you buy the Mavic 3 Classic?

By releasing the Mavic 3 Classic, DJI seems to have listened to users. As the telephoto lens only interests a limited number of pilots, the manufacturer has decided to remove it in order to give access to exceptional image quality to as many people as possible, thanks to a more affordable price. This new drone, complete and safe, is likely to become a reference in the near future.

Mavic 3 Classic: for whom?

If you are the owner of a Mavic 2 Pro and you want a better sensor, the Mavic 3 Classic is clearly made for you. In the same price range as what your drone cost you back then, you’ll be making quite a splash.

If you own a Mini 2, Mini 3 Pro, Mavic Air 2 or Air 2S, and therefore already have a DJI RC-N1 remote control (or even a DJI RC for some Mini 3 Pro owners), the Mavic 3 Classic may enable you to get a larger sensor at a reasonable price, since you’ll have the option of buying the drone on its own.

Finally, whether you already own a drone or not, and whether you’re a professional or a passionate amateur videographer, if you want the best possible image quality, the Mavic 3 Classic is the drone for you.

Which Mavic 3 to choose?

If you’re already interested in the Mavic 3 and hesitate between its different models, first of all it’s important to note that DJI is no longer offering the original Mavic 3 for sale. The choice is between the Mavic 3 Classic and the Mavic 3 Pro.

The Mavic 3 Pro has the advantage of a three-sensor nacelle, with focal lengths equivalent to 24mm, 70mm and 166mm, offering great versatility when shooting. Naturally, it’s also more expensive than the Classic version.

To find out all you need to know about the Mavic 3 Pro, read our full review:
➡️ DJI Mavic 3 Pro with three cameras: full review