This episode introduces you to the Camera Screen for the DJI Play App version 1.1.0, for the Mavic Mini.
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The Mavic Mini has a very low ground clearance, which means you need a flat surface to launch and land with. I use the Hoodman Drone 5' Launch Pad and have for years. Below is a link to the 3' version of the launch pad. Well worth it so you can launch and land wherever you want.
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Youtube Video Show Notes - The Script
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Thank you for watching videos by Jeff Sibelius and land and air photos.com
Today I'll take you on a comprehensive walkthrough of the DJI Fly app, including an explanation of some new features recently added with version 1.1.0.
This episode is part of a series of videos I'm doing on the DJI Mavic Mini. A link to the playlist is in the upper right corner of the screen. If you plan to buy a Mavic Mini, follow the link in the description below and order direct from DJI. now, On to this episode.
I'm going into great detail on the app so I've broken this walkthrough into two parts. This is part one, the camera screen. If you want to see part two, follow this link.
You can see the entire script of this video with some additional information in my show notes at landandairphotos.com - follow the link in the description below.
Here you see the screen for the app when you first connect your controller, smart device and drone.
I'll start in the upper left corner and work our way around to explain all the features.
in the upper left is the Altitude Zone. Tap it and you see a map of your location. This would show any DJI no fly zone and flight restriction information in the area.
Fly Spots shows places that people have identified as good to fly. Unfortunately, this functions only in China so the rest of the world can't use this for now.
The display says Mavic Mini and shows picture of the Mini because that's what we're connected to. If we connected to the Mavic Air 2 the label and photo would change.
In the upper right is the Book Icon. Tap the book icon to view tutorials, tips, flight safety information and the user manual. This is probably something to check out from home, not when you're getting set to fly.
Moving down to the left you see a firmware update message for my battery. If I wanted I could tap the Update link and update my battery firmware from here. I'll do that when I'm back home, so for now let's keep going.
Down to the bottom left corner is the Album icon. By tapping the album icon, you can access helpful features such as templates for creating video clips - you can use the templates right from your phone to create videos.
Next is skypixel. SkyPixel connects you to a community website where you can upload your content for others to see.
Next to that is Profile. This displays your profile on DJI.com where you can see your own information, view flight logs, go to the DJI store, etc.
Finally in the bottom right corner is a big blue Go Fly button. When you see this button you know your drone and transmitter are connected.
Tap that button to open the camera window.
The camera window is where you do all your flying.
I'm going to walk you around this screen starting in the upper left corner to explain all the icons, messages and settings.
Starting at the upper left is an arrow icon. Tap that and you return to the main screen.
Next to that is the mode button. This is how you choose your power setting for the Mini. By default it starts in Position, or P mode. That's the middle power setting.
The top power mode is Sport mode which gives your Mini the maximum power for speed and for maintaining control in the wind.
The bottom power mode is Cinesmooth. In this mode the drone operates very slowly and smoothly to give you the best quality, cinematic footage.
The mode setting is important with the Mini because this drone is dramatically affected by wind. On breezy days you may want to switch to Sport mode to ensure you can maintain control in the wind.
When you get a chance, watch my tutorial on flying the mini in wind, which uses the Sport mode. A link is in the upper right corner now.
To change modes you tap on Mode P and it changes to Sport mode, or Mode S.
I tap on it again and changes to Cinesmooth, Mode C.
I tap it again and returns to Mode P
Next to the modes is the aircraft status indicator. Right now it says Takeoff is permitted. If I had calibration problems or magnetic interference or some other problem I'd get a warning message here so this is a good thing to keep an eye on before and during your flights.
If I tap on that a window opens to view and set maximum altitude, flight distance and Return to Home (RTH) altitude. You can also check your media card's remaining storage space and format your SD card from this window.
Tap anywhere on screen to get rid of that window.
Moving across the top to the right, the satellite icon displays how many positioning satellites are currently connected to the Mavic Mini - I have 13 satelites here. Next to that is an icon that looks like an antenna signal to show my wifi strength - here it shows I have a good wifi connection between the Mini and the remote controller.
Next to that is a battery icon to show the level of charge for the batery.
If I tap on the battery icon a window opens to show the battery temperature, voltage information and estimated flight time left.
Next to that you see some dashes. Once we get flying this will show the estimated amount of flight time you have left.
Notice I said estimate. You can't treat this as gospel. Lots of external factors affect your flight time - temperature,
wind conditions, how aggressively you fly, whether you're recording video or not and others as well. A lot of variables will influence how quickly your battery drains, so always treat the number here conservatively, leave yourself a safety margin and bring your drone back well before the estimated flight time will expire. In the upper right corner are three dots. This icon opens the Overflow Menu, more commonly called the Settings menu. There is a lot to cover there. I'll cover the Overflow Menu in Part Two of my app walkthrough. Let's continue with the Camera Screen now.
Moving down the right side you see a white box with FHD on it. This means I'm set to shoot video at 1080p resolution. Right beneath that you see a big red circle - this confirms that I'm set to shoot video. If I was set to shoot still images the circle would be white.
If I tap on the FHD icon, the camera and video settings menu appears. You can see the video camera icon and 1080p icon are yellow, which means they're selected.
If I tap on 2.7k it switches to 2.7k resolution.
To the left of that, you see my options for frame rate. At 2.7K I can shoot at 24, 25 or 30 frames per second. The 24 framerate is new with a recent upgrade to the DJI Fly app and the Mavic Mini firmware.
If you're in 1080p resolution, you can shoot at 24, 25, 30, 48, 50 or 60 frames per second. So lower resolution gives you more choices for framerate.
If I wanted to shoot still photos I just tap on the camera icon. You can see the big red button has turned to white.
You can shoot single shots or timed shots.
When you pick Timed Shots you can set a shot duration of 2 to 60 seconds.
Finally at the bottom of the right column you see Quick Shots.
We can't access quick shots because we haven't launched yet, so I'm going to take off now so I can show you what that menu looks like.
If you look along the left edge of the camera view you see an arrow pointing up with a circle beneath it. This is our auto launch button.
I tap on that once, then press and hold the icon in the middle of the screen and the drone launches automatically.
I'm going to take it up a little higher and move it forward a bit.
Now if I go to quickshots, you can see I have four different quickshot options. Dronie, Rocket, Circle and Helix.
I've done a full tutorial on how to use the quickshots so I'm not going to cover that here. You'll find a link in the upper right corner of the screen to that video so be sure to check that out.
If I wanted to shoot a still picture, I would simply tap the white button, which is the shutter release.
If I'm in video mode, I tap on the red shutter release button and it starts recording video. The red circle becomes a red square.
You can see a counter beneath the button to indicate how long I've been recording.
to stop it all I have to do is hit the red square and it stops recording.
Beneath that is a play icon. Tap that and you can play back your recordings in the app.
Moving down to the lower right corner, we have a button that says Auto, next to that is an icon that says AE with a lock beneath it, and an icon that says EV with a number beneath it -0.3. These are the options you have for controlling your exposure in Auto mode. In Auto mode, the light meter in the camera measures the light entering the lens and chooses the settings it thinks will give you a proper exposure.
Sometimes the light meter gets fooled and you have a tool here to tell the camera to adjust when that happens. EV stands for Exposure Value and you can adjust this setting to compensate and make it darker or brighter than what it's measuring. If you tap that it shows numbers from +3 down to -3. 0 means no compensation at all, just use what the light meter says.
As you can see when I scroll into negative numbers, it gets darker. When I move into positive numbers the scene gets brighter.
I find that the mavic mini tends to shoot a little bright, so I typically leave my EV at -.3. That's just my preference - you can choose whatever setting you like best.
This little box right here is the histogram and it is a graphical representation of your exposure - I'm going to explain it in a few minutes but for now I'll close it to get it out of the way.
Next is AE Lock, the small lock icon with AE over it.
I'm going to take the drone out and up a little bit to show you how this works.
When you set the EV compensation the camera will continue to adjust its exposure by however much you specified. However, as lighting changes, the exposure continues to fluctuate - constantly. As your subject gets brighter, the camera will automatically adjust for that even though you have EV compensation set.
For example, I have a nice bright blue sky that makes up most of my scene. If I tilt the camera down, the ground will fill the screen - and it's darker than the sky. So, watch as I tilt and you'll see the exposure become brighter, adjusting to the darker ground.
Now I'll tilt back up and the sky will look bright for a moment, and then get darker as the camera adjusts.
When this happens in the middle of the shot it looks bad.
AE Lock allows you to lock your exposure so it doesn't fluctuate like this.
To do this you tilt the camera until you find a good composition with a mix of lights and darks that represents what you want your exposure to be.
Then tap the AE lock. See how it turns yellow, to show that it's active?
Now when you pan up and down, you'll see that the exposure doesn't change. It is locked to where it was when you hit the AE lock icon.
AE lock is extremely helpful but you have to pay attention. It will stay locked until you turn it off. If you point your drone into another direction, that locked exposure might not be right. In which case you need to turn off the lock, choose a new exposure that you like, and lock it again.
That's it for the auto camera settings.
If you tap the icon in the lower right corner that says Auto it changes to M for Manual. Now we've gone into manual settings, and the zebra pattern onscreen tells us my current manual settings are way too bright so the screen is entirely blown out.
This is a new option for the Mini - it came out in app version 1.0.8 or 1.1.0, but now you can control your shutter speed and your ISO while shooting video.
It's hard to see the white icons so I'm going to make everything darker so you can see better.
We can change our ISO, which is our light sensitivity.
And we can change our shutter speed, which is how long the shutter stays open when it shoots each frame.
We can't change the aperture, this is a fixed aperture lens.
Generally speaking, the ideal setting is a shutter speed that is twice your frame rate. So, if you're shooting at 30 frames per second, you want a shutter speed of twice that, or 1/60th second.
Well, the fact is that daylight is too bright to shoot at 1/60th second without neutral density filters. Even at 100 ISO, 1/60th second lets in too much light so your image is blown out.
I don't have ND filters for the mini so I can't show you that. I can show you that if you increase your shutter speed, the scene gets darker, and as you decrease your shutter speed, the scene gets brighter. If I take it too far the scene gets washed out.
There's the zebra pattern. This is the overexposure warning. Anywhere you see the zebra pattern, the image is overexposed and your details are lost.
Here's a good setting so I'll leave it here. Tap anywhere onscreen to close the menu.
Now my exposure is set, and this accomplishes the same thing as AE lock in auto mode. My exposure will not change in manual until I change it.
I'm going to switch back to auto for now.
If I were to change from video to photo mode.
You see I've got the same auto and manual options that I had in video mode.
Now let's move along the bottom to the left.
In the center you see an icon with a circle, radiating lines and a dot. This is supposed to show where the drone is in relation to you. I don't find this icon to be reliable so I don't use it.
You can use the map for this information - I'll show you the map in a minute.
Moving over to the left from there, you have your telemetry information.
This tells you your telemetry, your altitude and horizontal distance between the drone and the controller, and the vertical and horizontal speed the drone is travelling at.
When I push the right stick forward you can see my distance and horizontal speed are changing.
If I bring it back, same thing.
If I push the left stick forward or back the altitude and vertical speed change.
So that's a good thing to keep an eye on while in flight.
In the bottom left corner is a small icon that looks like a map.
If you tap on that it becomes larger and you see it is a map of your location.
Tap it again and it fills the screen and your camera view becomes a small thumbnail.
This is a great way to check out the area where you're flying.
If I zoom in on the map, you can actually see my flight path for this flight drawn out on the screen.
the arrow shows the location of the drone and which way it's pointed.
If the drone were to come down and crash or I just lost it in the sky, I could use this map to help me find where it was.
If I crashed, I could literally walk out to where the drone was. The dot represents me, or more accurately, the controller. As I walked, the map would update my location so I could see where I was in relation to the drone.
Now I'll tap on the camera view thumbnail to swap the screens.
You notice as we move up the left edge from the map, you see the icon we used before to launch. But now it's an arrow pointing down. This is how we do a return to home or an auto landing.
If I tap on that I have two options. Land in place or return to home.
There are times when I want to choose one or the other. Normally I'll tell it to return to home so it comes back to the last home point I have set for it. But maybe I have the drone positioned where I want it to land and don't want it to return to home. I have both options.
In either case, press and hold the button you want and it will trigger the landing action.
That's it for the camera view.
In the next episode I'll explain the Overflow Menu, also called the Settings menu. That episode is linked in the upper right corner.
Before you go out for your first flight, I encourage you to go through your app and get familiar with it, choose the settings you want to start with and make sure all the firmware is up to date. That way, when you go out to fly you can focus on managing the aircraft rather than figuring out what settings you want to use.
I've covered a ton of information here. If you want to review the information you can watch this episode again, or read the entire script of this video, along with additional helpful information, in my shownotes at landandairphotos.com - follow the link in the description below.
I've got more episodes on the Mavic Mini, tutorials and reviews, so check out the playlist onscreen now and keep learning!
I hope you found this tutorial to be helpful - don't forget to subscribe, hit the like button and leave a comment. You can also join my Facebook group if you want to chat - maybe we can fly together!
Thanks for watching.