Parrot Anafi – compact folding drone with zoom function
The Parrot Anafi is a foldable drone with a 21-megapixel 4K camera and 2-axis gimbal. We took a close look at the unofficial successor of the Parrot Bebop Drone 2 and reveal how the latest drone from Parrot compares with other current top drones in our detailed product review.
The Parrot Anafi is available either as a stand-alone model or in various versions with additional batteries or FPV goggles.
Processing and design
The design of the Parrot Anafi is extremely delicate and somewhat reminiscent of an insect. Compared to most other foldable drones, the elongated shape is immediately noticeable when folded. If you fold in the arms of the drone, which vary in length, it measures 24 x 6.7 x 6.5 cm, which is about the size of a standard water bottle.
The Parrot Anafi also differs from comparable drones in terms of weight. At just 320 grams, for example, it is about 110 grams lighter than the DJI Mavic Air. Carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic filled with hollow, air-filled glass spheres provides the necessary stability and shock absorption while keeping the weight low.
The 2700 mAh battery of the Parrot Anafi allows flight times of up to 25 minutes and accelerates the camera drone up to 34.2 mph (55 km/h). This means that the Parrot drone does not stay in the air for quite as long as, for example, the DJI Mavic 2. Nevertheless, both flight duration and top speed are more than decent. If you want to stay in the air even longer, you should think about buying replacement batteries or buy a version with multiple batteries right away.
The batteries have a USB-C port and can therefore be charged with any standard USB power adapter. A powerbank can also be used for charging this way.
The range of the radio signals is 2.48 miles or 4 km (FCC standard) or 1.24 miles or 2 km (CE standard) in Europe. Since drones are only allowed to be flown on sight in many countries, the range is therefore more than sufficient in the vast majority of cases.
The Parrot Anafi’s position is determined by GPS and GLONASS modules. Furthermore, an infrared sensor and an additional camera for ground monitoring have been installed on the underside of the drone. Together with the built-in barometer, the copter thus independently and safely maintains its position even indoors without GPS reception.
When used outdoors, the Parrot Anafi can withstand wind speeds of up to 31 mph (50 km/h), which is even more than the DJI Mavic 2. Unfortunately, the quadcopter does not have an obstacle detection system.
Another advantage of the Anafi is also its sound. Compared to other copters, the drone is relatively quiet and sounds more pleasant than most other drones.
The camera of the Parrot Anafi
The 4K camera of the Parrot Anafi has a 1/2.4” CMOS sensor with a fixed aperture of f/2.4 and allows video recording in true 4K (4096 x 2160 pixels) at a maximum of 24 fps. In UHD, 30 fps and in Full HD up to 60 fps are available. 720p recordings can be made at a maximum of 120 fps. The bit rate is 100 Mbit per second and therefore promises high-quality video material. The camera’s field of view is 84°.
The videos are stored in MP4 format (H264). An HDR mode for photo and movie recordings is also available. The optionally selectable flat P-Log color profile also provides even more leeway for post-processing. We also particularly like the lossless digital zoom, which magnifies 4K recordings up to 1.4x and Full HD recordings even up to 2.8x. A comparable zoom can currently only be found in the DJI Mavic 2 Zoom.
The camera of the Parrot Anafi is stabilized by a 2-axis gimbal that can be swiveled vertically by 180°. The third axis is digitally stabilized. Thanks to the gimbal’s large degree of freedom, completely new perspectives are possible for camera shots. For example, you can film objects vertically above the drone and without the rotor blades protruding into the picture – a feature currently only found on the Parrot Anafi.
Photos are taken by the foldable drone in up to 21 megapixels and saved in JPEG or DNG RAW format. Meanwhile, various panorama modes are also available. A microSD card and an adapter are included.
Flight and recording modes
The Parrot Anafi has various smart flight and recording modes. In addition to the four selectable speeds (Film, Cinematic, Sport and Racing), you can activate various SmartDronies (Dolly, Boomerang) and CineShots (Reveal, Epic, Rise, 360°) in the FreeFlight 6 app. A time-lapse as well as a slow motion mode are also available.
Over time, Parrot has added more and more recording modes to the Anafi, although some of the functions must first be purchased in the app. For example, the Flight Path mode, in which waypoints can be marked. Meanwhile, there is also a Follow Me, an FPV and a Touch & Fly mode.
We particularly like the dolly zoom – a feature made famous by the Hitchcock movie “Vertigo”. Thanks to the built-in lossless digital zoom, the drone can zoom into a shot while flying it backwards, for example. This creates a perspective deformation of the background and thus an interesting visual effect.
The remote control: The SkyController 3
The controller of the Parrot Anafi turns on automatically when opened and turns off again when closed. It is robust and clearly designed and has buttons for launching and landing, Return-to-Home as well as starting and ending recordings. Especially the shoulder buttons and sliders for gimbal tilt and zoom are very accessible and allow for precise adjustments.
Parrot Anafi Extended
With the Parrot Anafi Extended, the French drone manufacturer has an extended version of the Parrot Anafi on offer. In addition to the drone and controller, the extended version includes a total of three batteries (3 x 25 minutes flight time), a practical travel bag and all kinds of other accessories.
The carrying bag offers space for the drone, all three batteries and the SkyController 3 and is therefore your ideal companion when traveling or on the road. Also included are 8 propeller blades, a mounting wrench, a 16 GB microSD card with SD adapter, and a two-month subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud Photos or Adobe Premiere Pro CC.
Scope of delivery
- Remote control
- USB-C charging cable
- microUSB memory card and adapter
The Parrot Anafi is a lightweight (320 g) foldable drone with 4K camera and extensive range of functions. The interaction of 2-axis gimbal and electronic stabilization of the third axis works flawlessly and delivers smooth shots. Particularly exciting is the 180° radius in which the camera can be panned vertically, offering unique perspectives.
The flight time of just under 25 minutes is very decent and the high maximum range of up to 1.24 miles (2 kilometers) guarantees excellent signal transmission. On the other hand, we didn’t like the Anafi’s in-app purchases for some of the recording modes – other drone manufacturers offer all functions here for free from the moment of purchase. The lack of obstacle detection might also be an argument against the purchase for some.
Nevertheless, we think the Parrot Anafi has great features at a reasonable price and is therefore a real alternative to the DJI Mavic Air or Pro.