For autonomous flight, active tracking is the best feature where there is no need to control the drone’s movement; still, you can get marvellous video footage. Fly the drone, start the active tracking, and it will follow you until it is fully discharged.
Skydio 2+ is the latest drone from skydio INC, mainly focused on active tracking systems. DJI also introduced active tracking in mini-series which is mini 3 pro. However, there is a possibility that DJI will remove these features from New DJI drone mini 3 non-pro models.
So In this discussion, we will mainly compare the DJI mini 3 pro and skydio 2+ and which will be the best for your applications.
What is active tracking?
Active tracking is a process where the system analyses the images in real time and tracks the items or people indicated on the screen, and the whole process happens within a fraction of a second.
Necessary things for active tracking
One drone or uncrewed autonomous vehicle can safely follow detected objects through efficient object tracking and avoiding algorithms. So for object tracking, we need suitable quality image sensors, and for obstacle avoidance, we need multiple proximity sensors. Both drones are equipped with this kind of sensor, but the quantity is different.
DJI Mini 3 pro has three obstacle avoidance sensors (Top, Bottom and Rear). With the top and bottom sensor’s range, this drone can sense the object in front of it. Whereas skydio 2+ has six sensors with a navigational camera system. It can also feel any obstacle from the side, but this side-sensing feature is absent in DJI mini 3 pro
GPS-based object Tracking
Skydio Inc invented one beacon device for this kind of tracking system. Without the controller, we can control the skydio drone using this GPS-enabled handheld device by connecting it with a smartphone.
In image-based tracking, there are some limitations, like the possibility that the drone can lose the tracking object for many reasons(Many obstacles, speed, low light conditions etc.). But in this tracking system, skydio used both image and GPS-based tracking. If the image-based quest fails, then using Beacon GPS signal skydio 2+ will maintain its tracking process.
How easy is this active tracking?
We cannot control the mini 3 pro without its joystick controller. But with the skydio 2+, we can control the entire drone using a small beacon device which is very easy to use. So those who don’t want to carry a large remote controller for flying and capturing memories can use the skydio beacon.
Some Technical comparison
|Features||Mini 3 pro||Skydio 2+|
|Camera||1/1.3-inch CMOS Effective Pixels: 48 MP||Sony IMX577 1/2.3” 12.3MP CMOS|
|Navigation Camera||Not present||6x cameras in trinocular configuration top and bottom|
|Maximum Flight Distance||25km ideal condition||For beacon: 3km For controller: 6km|
|Video Resolution||4K 60fps||4k 60 fps|
|Maximum Hovering time||40 mins(Intellijent battery plus)||27 mins|
|Keyframe option||Not avaiable||Available|
|Price||Fly more combo with DJI RC $1158||Cinema Combo $1949|
Which one is better
DJI mini 3 pro is made as an all-rounder drone and can be used for different purposes. But skydio 2+ drone is 90% focused on the active tracking system and 10 % on other staff.
So, If you are a sports person who wants to shoot mostly active tracking type of things without worrying about the drone crash, then you can buy skydio 2+. It is the best in the domain of active tracking and obstacle avoidance.
But If you want all in one drone with compromised active tracking features, then you can buy DJI mini 3 pro.