I’m writing this for two reasons – to help others, but just as importantly, to remind myself how to do it in a few months’ time when I’ve forgotten what I did!
I think it must have been possible to do this in a simpler manner in the past, using older firmware and apps, but the Internet seems to be full of tutorials that no longer work. There are many threads where people assume that the Mavic Pro will work in the same way as Phantoms or Aspires, but that appears to be no longer the case.
Please note that I use a Windows 10 PC and Android and my Mavic Pro is running the V01.04.0300 firmware
1 – Download the DJI Assistant 2 software from https://www.dji.com/mavic/info#downloads and install it on your PC.
2 – Download a program called CSVview from https://datfile.net/CsvView/downloads.html and install it – you will need the 64 bit version of Java on your PC, so you may need to download and install that as well – you should be prompted automatically should you need to do so.
3 – With your Mavic Pro powered down, connect it to your PC using Micro USB cable from the left-hand port to a USB port on your PC. You can use the cable that came with the Mavic for charging your remote control.
3 - Run the DJI Assistant 2 software and then power up your Mavic. The software should recognise your drone on the Connected Devices page and when you click on the icon for it you will be lead to the main DJI Assistant page, open at the Firmware list page.
4 - In the left-hand window there are several options. The second one is Data Upload and the third is Flight Data. It’s at this point that the confusion begins. From the help messages in Assistant and various Internet postings, it appears that you should be able to go straight to Flight Data, open the Data Viewer and read flight data straight from the Internal SD card inside the Drone. It’s not actually clear that you should be looking at the internal SD card – you can be forgiven for thinking you might find the data on the external SD card on which you store video and pictures.
However, for me, and I suspect many others, that doesn’t work. There is no sign of the internal SD card and no data on the external card.
5 – Instead of going to Flight Data, click on Data Upload. The first message I see implies I’m going to be uploading my data to DJI, and although that’s one of the possibilities, you can also extract data and put it on your PC. Confirm you understood the message (even if you didn’t) and you should be presented with a list of data files. You can see the date and time of each file, so tick the checkbox of the flight you want to study. At the top of the listings there should now be two highlighted buttons, and the first is Save to Local. You get to choose a folder on your PC and then when you select it a file is download from your drone to the folder.
6 – Now, at this point, you might be forgiven for thinking that you can go to Flight Data and open the file you have just downloaded. Sadly, that’s not the case. You have downloaded a compressed file, even though it has a .DAT extension. and the Flight Data viewer doesn’t understand compressed files.
7 – You could at this point use the CSVview program to view the compressed files, but I’m going to stick with DJI software for the viewing process. Click on your PC Start button and open the list of programs. There will be a entry for CSVview containing not just CSVview, but another utility called ExtractDJI. Open it and click on the Dat file entry box to select the file you have just downloaded. Change, or make a note of the destination path, and then click Go. The file will now be converted and saved as a new .DAT file with the prefix FLYXXX.Dat where XXX is the flight number.
8 – Return to DJI Assistant 2 and click on Flight Data, confirm you understand the help message (even though it’s wrong) and then Open the Data Viewer. Now using the Open icon on the Viewer’s toolbar, load the newly converted file. You are in business!
You still need to be a bit psychic to use the viewer, but that’s really a different subject.