Reviewed: Parrot Anafi Drone

Vjeran Pavic from The Verge isn’t entirely happy with what they’ve delivered. Can it compete?

Parrot’s Anafi is their answer to DJI’s Mavic and Mavic Air. In some ways, their design trumps DJI’s. I personally love the idea of being able to tilt the camera to face upward. It’s a new perspective that’s never been done before on a consumer drone. I’m also a big fan of charging the batteries with USB-C cables, meaning you can use any portable battery.

Unfortunately, the $100 price difference isn’t enough to fill in the gaps that you can expect. DJI’s software and clout in the market is an uphill battle that Parrot hasn’t quite nailed. Now, I’m sure we’ve all had the DJI app quit unexpectedly, so I’m not sure I’d be so harsh on Parrot for app issues.

It’s ideas like this that will drive a better market, and that’s exactly what Pavic sees in this. It’s no mystery that drones are a tricky business category to get right. With stocks currently plateaued, a drive in competition couldn’t hurt.

If I was to make a guess, I think DJI will take Parrot’s digital zoom function. While they already have similar features for their consumer drones, and obviously you can crop 4K footage for a HD export, Parrot’s implementation seems better. You can achieve a 1.4x crop in UHD 4K, and a 2.8x crop in 1080p resolution. It's getting consumers closer to higher-end drones, with longer lenses.

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2 Comments

Great review. You neglected (I think?) to mention that the Anafi is much quieter and has a much less obnoxious sound profile than the Mavic Air, and does not have the draconian and intrusive DJI software. These are both HUGE to me. The Zoom is a nice bonus, also I would have loved to see footage of the underside of the new Bay Bridge with the vertical upwards perspective, I would I feel use iut a lot. I could care less that the SD slot is under the battery, although a built in memory cache would be nice. It would be nice to know which firmware you had in the later drone, so we can see what the current version is up to now. There seems to be a large difference in hover stability and other issues between reviewers, and as you say, software revisions are forthcoming. DJI customer service is not so great, I hear good things about being able to talk to someone at Parrot if the need arises. I am so about to pull the trigger on the Anafi although I do hate the long carry profile/shape.

No one yet has neutral density filters for Anafi, can you tell us the external diameter of the lens case? Have you tried using filters from another drone ie. Mavic or Mavic Air? It looks like it will take a slip on filter...