New Drone, New Features
DJI’S latest release also boasts some brand-new features. I was impressed by Smartcapture, a new, interactive way of controlling the Mavic Air using your hand. You can launch and control the drone with hand gestures, then take photos or videos however you like. I thought this was the most fun of all the flight modes. Start by holding your palm straight out until the Mavic Air recognizes this gesture, then move your hand in the direction you want the drone to travel and it will fly that way. With the camera set to Video or Photo mode, just hold your index fingers and thumbs on each hand to create a square, like you’re framing a scene, and the Mavic Air will start to take a photo or start recording. (To stop, just make the gesture again!) To send the Mavic Air backward or move it closer, raise both arms with your palms facing the drone. If your palms are roughly 2 to 4 inches apart, the drone will begin flying closer to you. If you increase the distance between your hands, the drone will fly backward and away from you. Lower one arm toward the ground and hold it there for three seconds, and the Mavic Air will land. Neat stuff! The Mavic Air also has some new photography and video features:
HDR algorithms. Mavic Air helps you obtain the right exposure settings intelligently, according to lighting conditions for all photos. Overexposed or dark areas are processed for more natural transitions between highlights and shadows. Sphere Panorama mode. Mavic Air automatically shoots and stitches 25 photos together to create crystal-clear 32-megapixel panoramas. Slow-motion video. Mavic Air shoots 1080p 120fps video to capture all your epic high-speed adventures. Asteroid. Mavic Air captures video starting in front of your subject as the drone flies backward and ascends, creating a reverse playback video that starts with a spherical view from above that descends toward your subject like a falling asteroid. Boomerang. Mavic Air flies a boomerang-like oval flight path around your subject, starting and stopping the video in the same place.