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DJI Mini SE vs. Potensic Atom SE (Read This First)

The DJI Mini SE is perfect for enthusiasts unsure about spending outrageous amounts of money on a capable drone.

How does DJI Mini SE stack up to the Potensic Atom SE?

Potensic designed the Atom SE to compete with the DJI Mini SE. The Mini SE delivers incredible image stability, while the Atom SE has attractive flight modes like follow me and 4K@30 fps recordings.

But are those the only differences between these two impressive cheap drones?

In this article, we’ll compare these drones side by side, including a review of the drones’ video recording quality.

By the time you’re done reading, you can choose the right drone for you!

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DJI Mini SE

DJI Mini SE
$299.00 $261.09

Weighing less than 0 55lbs / 249 grams, DJI Mini SE is roughly the same weight as the smartphone.

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03/07/2024 02:01 pm GMT

Dimensions: 11.37 x 9.64 x 2.20 in
Weight: 249 g
Max Range:  4,000 m
Max Speed: 29 mph
Max Wind Speed Resistance: 10.5 m/s (Level 5)
Max Flying Time: 30 min
Camera Sensor: 1/2.3’’ CMOS
Camera Shutter: Electronic
Camera Still Resolution: 12MP
Image Format: JPG
Live View Quality: Up to 720p30FPS
Video Resolution: 4K30FPS
Video Bitrate: 40Mbps
Internal Storage: Not applicable
External Max Storage: U3 256GB microSD card
GPS: Yes

✅ Pros

  • It films smoother footage than the Atom SE
  • It has impressive stabilization in windy conditions
  • You don’t need to register this drone thanks to its weight
  • It’s suitable for flying indoors thanks to its low-controlled speed mode

❌ Cons

  • It doesn’t have ActiveTrack functions such as the Atom SE

Potensic Atom SE

Potensic ATOM SE
$299.99 $229.99

Atom se drone weighs less than 249g, no need for FAA & Remote ID registration.

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03/06/2024 04:02 pm GMT

Dimensions: 11.81 x 9.50 x 2.28 in
Weight: 249 g
Max Range:  4,000 m
Max Speed: 36 mph
Max Wind Speed Resistance: 10.5 m/s (Level 5)
Max Flying Time: 31 min
Camera Sensor: 1/3’’ CMOS
Camera Shutter: Electronic
Camera Still Resolution: 12MP
Image Format: JPG/JPG+RAW
Live View Quality: Up to 720p30FPS
Video Resolution: 4K30FPS
Video Bitrate: 40Mbps
Internal Storage: Not applicable
External Max Storage: U1 256GB microSD card
GPS: Yes

✅ Pros

  • It’s faster than the Mini SE
  • It films at an impressive 4K@30 fps
  • You don’t need to register this drone
  • It takes photos with better quality than the Mini SE

❌ Cons

  • It’s not as stable as the Mini SE in windy conditions

Build and design

These drones look identical. For most of us, the brand logo and the camera are the only differences.

Their build quality and even their colors are the same.

Both drones are foldable, with sturdy landing gear for their 249-gram weight that can withstand hard landings in flat areas.

However, Potensic added landing gear to the rear arms of the Atom SE. The Mini SE has rear landing gear in the belly.

Although it might not seem like a huge difference, the Potensic landing gear improves drone belly protection. The reason is the Atom SE provides a slightly bigger gap between the belly and the ground.

Also, they differ in their foldable experience. When folded, the Mini SE’s rear engines and propellers point backward, so they’re more exposed when hitting objects on the go.

Besides, you need to twist the rear legs to fold them, being a more delicate mechanism than the one in the Atom SE.

» MORE: How to Start a Potensic Drone (Step-by-Step Guide)

Camera

Although their cameras look the same, they are not by any means.

These drones’ cameras are robust for their size, but the Mini SE camera is slightly delicate, as it has a three-axis gimbal.

However, the gimbal allows the Mini SE to take photos and videos with immaculate stability. All your footage will look natural and smooth with this drone.

Its only disadvantage for quality fanatics is the resolution. It achieves 2.7K quality, providing you with acceptable detail.

The DJI drone is at a disadvantage compared to the max 4K@30fps resolution the Atom SE can produce. Atom SE footage will look crispier.

However, the Potensic drone lacks a three-axis gimbal, which it tries to replace with EIS and antishake technology.

The truth is that Atom SE footage looks crisp but with unnatural motion compared to Mini SE recordings.

Atom SE provides more photo resolution with less undesired blur.

Batteries

The Atom SE has 31 minutes of flight time and the Mini SE 30 minutes.

This difference is negligible as both drones are very light, needing to self-stabilize with GPS constantly, even in light wind conditions. This feature reduces both flying times to 20 to 25 minutes.

Also, both drone batteries charge in about an hour and a half, with a 5V/3A power adapter and cable.

The only real difference is in the battery price, as Atom SE batteries are way cheaper than the Mini SE’s.

With the Atom SE, you get more flight time at a lower price.

Remote controller

A significant difference comes in the remote controllers.

The Mini SE has a discontinued remote controller with an uncomfortable and unsafe mechanism to position your phone.

Your mobile device ends on the lowest side of the RC, held by two delicate pieces of plastic. These holders don’t provide much security, making your phone fall when you hit something.

On the other hand, you position your phone in the center of the Potensic RC. This gives you an improved feeling of safety compared to the DJI RC.

The only downside of the Potensic controller holder mechanism is that it keeps the device with such strength that it’s tricky to extract.

Both controllers are very comfortable to hold, even for pilots with small hands.

» MORE: Potensic Atom SE Firmware Update

Maneuverability

The clear winner in maneuverability is the Mini SE.

This DJI drone is stabler in windy conditions, making it more responsive to control commands. This drone also has a speed mode for use in confined spaces with improved stability.

You can fly the Mini SE safely indoors or outdoors with precision.

With the Atom SE, you’ll have some trouble in windy conditions. Its self-positioning system isn’t as reliable, although it has the same wind resistance level as the Mini SE.

However, the gusts have to be very intense for this drone to be uncontrollable.

Intelligent Flight modes

Finally, we have the reason why most people buy these kinds of drones.

Although these are cheap drones, they are above $250. They must come with automatic flying features to produce creative footage for that price tag.

The Mini SE has the QuickShots modes Dronie, Rocket, Circle, and Helix.

The target needs to be still for them to work while the drone performs an attractive maneuver for an entertaining quick video.

DJI hasn’t equipped this drone with ActiveTrack functions like follow me.

But Potensic has done it.

The Atom SE can follow you like a cameraman or even circle you while keeping you centered on the camera. Then you can film video tutorials while walking, not needing to control the drone.

With the waypoints feature, you select a path the drone will follow while filming. This flight mode records pre-established routes.

However, the Atom SE lacks the QuickShots the Mini SE has, so the drone can’t automatically record those fun, quick videos.

So which one should you choose?

If you’re unsure which drone fits you best, let’s reexamine strengths and weaknesses.

The Mini SE has a three-axis gimbal that lets you film smooth footage like a pro, even if it’s windy or the target constantly moves or shakes.

However, it films at a max res of 2.7K@30 fps, so your footage won’t look as crisp as with the Atom SE.

The DJI drone has Intelligent Flight modes such as Circle Me and Dronie, perfect for filming family experiences.

Finally, the Mini SE has incredible stability in the air, being able to fix its position.

The Atom SE can film up to 4K@30 fps, so you end up with a detailed video with accurate colors. However, it lacks a three-axis gimbal, making your footage shaky.

The Potensic drone also comes with Intelligent Flight modes like Circle Me, lacking the other Quickshots functions the DJI option has.

However, the Atom SE comes with Follow Me, perfect for recording yourself doing some tricks on your board. You can preset waypoints for the Atom SE to follow a desired path while filming in 4K.

But this Potensic drone isn’t as stable as the Mini SE, so it tends to move a lot in the air. Although it can self-position with GPS, it isn’t as accurate as the Mini SE.

They both lack collision avoidance sensors, unable to stop or bypass obstacles, so only fly them in obstacle-free areas.

In the end, the video speaks for itself. Here is a video from the Hobby Drone Pilot YouTube channel you should look at before making a final decision.