With the release of the Mini 3 Pro, DJI has introduced a new smart remote control with a built-in screen: the DJI RC. Available with the new mini drone in the most expensive package, but also sold separately, what is it really worth? And above all, the question that is most certainly burning in your mind: should you buy it? All the answers in this article.
If you’re interested in the DJI Mini 3 Pro and are considering getting DJI’s latest, you’ve probably wondered which package to choose. Should I buy the basic package with the standard RC-N1 remote control, or should I spend a little more money and get the ultimate package with the famous DJI RC remote control with integrated screen? Very good question.
But to make sure that the extra financial investment is worth it, you need to know what this new remote control really has in store. Is it that good, what are the advantages and disadvantages compared to the classic combination of the standard RC-N1 remote control with your smartphone?
In the following paragraphs, we will review all these issues to help you make the best choice.
Let’s start at the beginning, and take a look at the features of the beast:
|Dimensions||Without joysticks: 168.4 x 123.7 x 46.2 mm |
With joysticks: 168.4 x 123.7 x 62.7 mm
|Video transmission system||O3 (Mini 3 Pro) |
O3+ (Mavic 3)
|Antennas||2 internal antennas|
|Max. transmission distance||8km|
|Screen size||5.5 inches|
|Screen resolution||1920 x 1080 pixels|
|Screen brightness||700 nits|
|Refresh rate||60 frames/second|
|Connectivity||USB Type-C “Host |
|Storage||UHS-I Class 3 or higher microSD card|
|Supported drones||DJI Mini 3 Pro |
DJI Mavic 3
DJI Mavic 3 Cine
|Price||Remote control only: 299€. |
Included in the DJI Mini 3 Pro package with DJI RC: 999 €.
Not surprisingly, the number one advantage of the DJI RC is simple: no need to connect your smartphone to use it. This also means that you don’t need to connect the remote to WiFi, download and update the DJI Fly app, connect cables and make sure your phone has enough battery.
The remote control automatically connects to the drone. Just touch the screen to access the controls and see what the drone’s camera sees. Easy and quick to use, less time wasted and more freedom and fun.
But this strength would be nothing if DJI had not made a quality remote control. The DJI RC is light, its grips allow a pleasant grip and the ideal position of the two metal joysticks, placed above the screen, allows you to never cover the screen with your fingers.
Regarding the buttons, their layout is simple but well thought out. On the front panel, there are buttons for power, automatic return, and a switch to toggle between flight modes. On the top, accessible directly with your index fingers, the buttons to take a picture or start recording video.
Just below these, two small wheels allow you to control the orientation of the camera and to zoom. Finally, on the back are two customizable buttons for quick access to the advanced settings of the camera.
The DJI RC is equipped with a 5.5-inch FHD screen with a brightness of 700 nits. So much for the numbers, but what does it look like in practice?
The screen, which is also touch-sensitive, is bright enough to be viewed in most situations. It will eventually show its limits on a sunny day, but you can always fix that with a sunshade.
On the other hand, it is intended to be seen by the pilot only, the people standing next to you will not see much. This is not a problem in itself but it is always good to report.
With its large, bright screen, we expected to be a little disappointed with the battery. DJI announces an autonomy of 4 hours. To be honest, we haven’t checked if this data is accurate, but we were able to make several 25-30 minute flights without having to recharge it.
Concerning the connection between the remote control and the drone, nothing to complain about. We flew the Mini 3 Pro over 100 meters high and over a kilometer away and never once lost communication with the drone.
The DJI RC does not have many defects. In fact, we enjoyed the experience of riding with her so much that we had to look around a bit to find some.
However, we can note that the lack of connection to a smartphone, which is undoubtedly a huge advantage, also has its small downside. Indeed, this limits the possibilities of downloading media: you can read the photos and videos you have taken, present on the micro SD card, directly on the screen of the remote control. However, you can download photos from the DJI RC, but not videos, which would be possible with a smartphone. You will need to connect the remote control via a data cable to do this.
Another small flaw is that you will not be able to download other applications than DJI Fly, unlike other remote controls with screen released by DJI.
Is the DJI RC worth the extra cost compared to the standard package with the RC-N1 remote control?
The RC-N1 remote control was introduced with the DJI Mini 2 and at the time marked a clear improvement compared to previous models produced by the brand, especially with regard to the attachment of the smartphone. The spring clip on the top of the controller is very convenient and facilitates the passage of the data cable.
However, for us there is no contest: the new DJI RC remote control is clearly superior thanks to the comfort of use it offers. No need to connect to a phone or tablet, the DJI RC is directly connected to your drone as soon as you turn it on and you can start flying and filming without waiting. And that’s one less device you’ll have to worry about the battery.
Among the other advantages of the DJI RC over the RC-N1, we can also note that the DJI RC has a more complete key interface with its very practical customizable buttons. Its new dual spring joysticks allow for smoother control, and its antennas are integrated.
Doubt could have been allowed if the DJI RC was not of good enough quality and if its only advantage would have been not to have to use a smartphone or a tablet. But what it offers goes beyond this simple functionality: it completely changes the piloting experience you can have with the DJI Mini 3 Pro (and the Mavic 3, since it is now also compatible with the latter).
So, is the DJI RC worth it? With its comfort of use, its pleasant grip, its bright screen and its autonomy … you will have understood, for us there is no doubt, the answer is YES! 😁
You can also find our complete test of the DJI Mini 3 Pro (click here).
2 thoughts on “DJI RC remote control: is it worth it?”
Nice review, would be also interessting, how it works , when connecting an AR glasses like the Nreal Ar glasses. Does it work or not?
AR flight with DJI would be great….
Thank you for your comment!
It would be great indeed, but as far as we know, there is no compatibility with these glasses.