Autel Evo 2 Initial Review. Is it Finally a Mavic Killer?

Well folks, the drone world in 2020 is going to get pretty exciting with a number of new models coming out, none of which (at this time at least) are from DJI and I like that.

Among the lineup of new drones that were officially announced at CES, the one which personally interested me and pretty much most of the drone world was the Autel Evo 2.

autel evo 2 review

There were “leaked” specs prior to the official announcement, but it wasn’t until CES took place, that we found out the leaks were true, and they basically told the following story about the Autel Evo 2:

  • That it would have a 40 minute flight time.
  • That it would have an insane range of 16 KM.
  • That it’s camera would be able to film at up to 8K footage and that it would be incredibly sharp.
  • That it would have no geo fencing (like the original Autel Evo).
  • That it would have 6 sides of obstacle detection.
  • That it would be able to take 48 megapixel photos.
  • And that it would also be able to follow people at a level close if not as good as Skydio 2.

Now all of these specs tell a pretty important story and that is that this new model, at least on paper does destroy the Mavic 2 Pro (and obviously Zoom). 

But here’s why at least for now, the Autel Evo 2 is not a Mavic killer…

Based on what I saw from initial reviews out there from people who HAD already be given this model to review and released their reviews on the day of CES, I have to say, thus far, the Mavic kill story is still a bit farfetched and I’ll explain why that is in a moment and I will show video comparison proof of what I saw that makes me say this…

But let me make something clear:

I was one of the many people anxiously awaiting the announcement of this model since the leaks came out. Since I own 5 DJI drones (a Mavic 2 Pro being one of them) and have considered numerous times on buying the original Autel Evo, I had elected to wait until the second version was released and when I heard the same specs I listed above, I was almost entirely sold. I was ready to buy this drone model on day 1.

But this is where I turn back to the reviewers who were given this drone before it’s official release and showed me their comparison videos, some of which compared the footage of the Autel Evo 2 to the Mavic 2 Pro. And well, I wasn’t impressed.

In fact, I though the Mavic 2 Pro footage was far better, and considering how it’s camera is close but not as good as the Phantom 4 Pro’s, which in my opinion is at this point in time the best drone camera out of any I’ve seen, that says something about the superiority DJI still holds in this market.

Now let me actually show you the video that made me believe this (Autel Evo 2 vs Mavic 2 Pro):

Now let’s get some things straight…

This is where Autel Evo 2 absolutely wins against the Mavic 2 Pro:

  • It can definitely fly further.
  • It can definitely stay in the air longer.
  • You will be able to change the 3 different cameras this drone has available for it (it’s easier to switch them than with DJI’s model).
  • Not that it needs to be said, but I’ll say it: This model already beats the original Mavic Pro, Mavic Air, the Mini, and more. So you can think of this is a victory for Autel in the “Mavic killer department”.

But compared to the Mavic 2 Pro, there are thus far only 2 obvious advantages you can spot right away, but as for the camera being better? 8K or not, I did not see it being better than the footage in the Mavic 2 Pro.

In fact, I saw the opposite, both for the video AND photo comparison:

The Mavic shows far more details, contrast and structure. You can tell me what you think below regarding this comparison.

Here’s the silver lining though: There’s 3 versions of the Autel Evo. 

You have the regular Autel Evo 2 model, which is the one you saw in the video above being tested against the Mavic 2 Pro.

You have the Autel Evo Pro which has not yet been released, so there’s no footage to compare yet, but this is the one I am most hopeful for. This is the model whose camera has a 1 inch sensor and likely the one which will give the Mavic 2 Pro’s camera a run for it’s money at least.

Then you have the third camera which is basically the same as Mavic 2 Enterprise’s version of things. But I don’t know enough about that one to make any comparisons. 

And the beauty is that you, the consumer will be able to buy these cameras and switch them to the same Autel Evo 2 body as you like without having to ship it to the dealer like you would with DJI.

If these 5 things are true with Autel Evo 2 (Pro), then it will be a Mavic killer:

1) If it’s 1 inch sensor camera is truly as good if not better than the Mavic 2 Pro’s camera (this is pending).

2) If it’s overall performance is better than the Mavic 2 Pro (this is so far the case, so we can add 1 point).

3) If it’s sensors perform as well as the MP2 if not better (this still has to be tested).

4) If it doesn’t have so many bugs when it comes out (this happened with the first generation model and it’s still pending).

5) If it’s autonomous flight modes like tracking are better and more intelligent than the MP2 and on the level of Skydio 2 (still this is pending).

If all of these 5 things will be prevalent with the Pro model, then I will officially call it a Mavic killer and I will definitely buy it. So far, because there are uncertainties, and I believe the regular Autel Evo 2 is not as good at the Mavic 2 Pro, I can’t make this claim.

But I am still hopeful because I own only DJI models for now and for the longest time have wanted to make sure that the 6th model in my collection is a none DJI product. 

Whatever happens, you’ll probably be hearing the following a lot from other drone enthusiasts and that is with this influx of new drone models into the market, DJI will be pushed to stay at the top, and this means we’ll likely be getting some seriously awesome models from them (A possible Mavic 3).  

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