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Can DJI Avata Take Photos? (Step-by-Step Guide)

The DJI Avata lacks Intelligent Flight Modes to take pictures, such as Hyperlapse or Waypoints. It also lacks a suitable camera sensor for mapping, agriculture, or other enterprise applications.

So that means this drone doesn’t work for photography?

It certainly works with cinematics, taking 4K@60 crisp and accurate color videos. The DJI Avata also works flawlessly for taking 4K cinematic photos. You only need to press the shutter/record button, and that’s it.

If you wonder what a cinematic photo is, then keep reading. You will be amazed at the options you have to exploit the DJI Avata camera potential.

But first, we cover the step-by-step procedure to take photos from its compatible remote controllers and goggles.

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How to take photos with the DJI Avata

The Avata also lacks specialized photo modes such as Timed or Burst Shots, only having the Single Shot option.

The reason is that the goggles view doesn’t work with the Fly app, which is the camera view that contains all these modes. And at this time, there are no DJI Goggles firmware updates to access these functions.

It means the final picture will depend solely on your photography skills.

And upside here is that having only Single Shots simplifies how you take your pictures. By pressing the dedicated button in your RC or Goggles, you get a 4K stabilized image instantaneously.

Motion Controller

With this controller, you can only use the DJI Avata in Normal and Sport mode. The preferred way is to take pictures while your aircraft hovers at a fixed altitude.

These modes are also practical for long-exposure shots, as you can fix the Avata position, mimicking a camera with a tripod.

Only remember this drone last 18 minutes max hovering while charged 100%.

To take pictures with your Motion Controller:

  1. Check if the Avata is in Record or Shutter mode.
  2. Locate the Shutter/Record button with your thumb on the left side of the controller while holding it.
  3. If the Avata is in Record mode, hold down the Shutter/Record button. You’ll notice the Avata switches to Shutter mode.
  4. Point with the camera to the scene you want to photograph.
  5. Press the Shutter/Record button to take a picture.

Another cool feature with this RC paired with the Goggles 2 is Head Tracking. This function allows you to move the gimbal in a different direction than the flight path. That way, you can perform controlled dives and orbits, creating scenes that deserve a photo.

To access this function:

  1. Hover at a safe altitude of 65ft or above obstacles.
  2. Brake your aircraft by pressing the dark grey rugged button with your thumb. Now the Avata hovers at that safe altitude,
  3. Access the shortcut menu by sliding your finger down once on the left Goggles 2 touch screen.
  4. Swipe your finger forward until you highlight the Head Tracking icon. And then tap the touch screen to select it.
  5. Press the Brake button to start flying with Head Tracking activated.

FPV Remote Controller 2

Manual mode is only possible with this RC, so your piloting and photographic skills must be excellent to produce dramatic and exciting pictures.

You can fly and rotate faster in this mode, so your shots will have a profound motion blur effect. As a result, you can take pictures that look extreme while doing a Split S maneuver or flip.

Maneuvering the Avata while pressing the Shutter/Record button can be challenging. Until you get used to it, you can always press the left forward Flight Pause/RTH trigger.

That way, the Avata will turn immediately to Normal or Sport Mode. This will cause the drone will hover at a certain altitude, avoiding crashing.

And if you want to train yourself first in Normal and Sport mode with this RC, you can do it.

To take pictures with the FPV Remote Controller 2:

  1. Check if the Avata is in Record or Shutter mode.
  2. Reach the Shutter/Record button with your right index finger while holding the controller.
  3. If the Avata is in Record mode, hold down the Shutter/Record button. You’ll notice the Avata switches to Shutter mode.
  4. Point with the camera to the scene you want to photograph.
  5. Press the right forward Flight Pause/RTH trigger Shutter/Record button.

FPV Goggles V2

These are bulkier and heavier than the Goggles 2, but they have a dedicated Shutter/Record button on the top. You can identify it as a gray button with a red dot in the center.

  1. Check if the Avata is in Record or Shutter mode.
  2. If the Avata is in Record mode, hold down the Shutter/Record button. You’ll notice the Avata switches to Shutter mode.
  3. Point with the camera to the scene you want to photograph.
  4. Press the Shutter/Record button, which you locate on the top right corner of the Goggles.

This isn’t a preferred way to take photos, as you have to remove your hands from the RC. However, it’s another option that DJI gives us to take gorgeous 4K images with our DJI Avata.

What is a cinematic photo?

A cinematic is a video with a movie vibe, thanks to its crisp imagery, subtle lighting conditions, and motion blur. These video scenes are so captivating that they cause strong emotions in the viewers.

So a cinematic photo turns one movie scene into a still image. This style of photography is a dramatic and effective way to tell stories without the need for a sequence.

And the DJI Avata can help you achieve these kinds of shots.

Why is the DJI Avata perfect for cinematic photography?

A photo can’t get more thrilling than an aerial cinematic with a drone.

Let’s put dive into consideration. An Avata dive video makes you feel the action, high speed, and an immersive fall feeling.

Have you ever paused one of those videos in a particular scene?

Even with a static image, you can tell there is some movement. You still can feel that high speed and immersive fall from the video.

Thanks to its 4K resolution, you can also achieve beautiful aerial photos of stationary and moving elements interacting.

At night you can take highway pictures from the sky. The result is a light show with light trails when setting ISO at 100 and shutter speed to 1/50.

» MORE: Best ND Filters for DJI Avata

On sunny days you can control light with the best ND filters for the Avata.

These filters reduce the bright conditions displaying pictures with subtle light effects, and adding natural motion blur to your photos, making them even more dramatic.

You can reach angles, heights, and movements difficult for a human with a camera in hand. In the end, the Avata will help you think of new ways to get thrilling pictures of your preferred scenarios.


However, the DJI Avata comes with two significant issues when wanting to take photographs.

It only stores images in JPEG format rather than in RAW. For professionals that need to deliver impressive high-quality with the best light conditions, it’s a disappointment.

Keep in mind that RAW files need a strong post-edition.

And in this fast-paced world where your clients need pictures quickly, you won’t have time to edit. Then the JPEG becomes an attractive option.

Secondly, although the Avata camera self-stabilizes, you will notice slight noise in the pictures. The reason is that being so lightweight, high wind affects it dramatically.

This noise is not as perceivable for amateur photographers. But for pro photographers that work with top-notch cameras, it’s visible.

Types of photography with the DJI Avata

This drone lacks a portrait mode, not being able to rotate the gimbal 90 degrees like in the Mavic.

With the Avata, you can take landscape pictures while it’s hovering or doing some maneuvers. Then those pictures above a dense forest with fog at sunset are possible.

And thanks to its 18 minutes of hovering time and gimbal self-stabilize features, it works for long exposure shots.

The Avata camera only achieves a 1/50 shutter speed. Your pictures won’t need too much exposure time. However, your photos acquire a natural motion blur, similar to the blur our eyes perceive.