In a nutshell: Aerial drones are available across a range of price points, from cheap stocking stuffers to serious budget busters. DJI's latest flagship squarely fits into the latter category, despite being compact enough to fit into a backpack.

The DJI Matrice 30 drone is a professional piece of kit through and through. The standard M30 features a 48-megapixel 1/2" CMOS sensor camera with 5x-16x optical zoom, a 12-megapixel wide-angle camera and support for 8K photo 4K/30FPS video resolution. There's also a laser rangefinder that can supply precise coordinates of objects up to 1,200 meters away. The M30T variant adds a radiometric thermal camera to the mix.

IP55 protection enables the M30 to operate in harsh environments including high winds, heavy rain, high altitudes and extreme temperatures ranging from -20C to 50C. Six-way obstacle avoidance sensors help cut down on crashes while the three-propeller emergency landing mode can bring the unit down safely even if one motor completely fails.

Battery life is rated at 41 minutes of flight time. It also supports battery hot swapping, and the smart charging case allows charging from 20 percent to 90 percent in just half an hour. The new DJI RC Plus remote controller, meanwhile, packs a 7-inch HD screen and is IP54 certified against dust and water splashes.

Perhaps the most impressive component is the DJI Dock. This autonomous takeoff, landing and charging station allows for fully automatic, programmed flights. The dock is IP55 rated and the core components are IP67 rated, allowing for continuous operation with minimal maintenance. It even features an integrated weather station, wide-angle surveillance cameras, built-in antennas, a port for an external 4G dongle and an internal battery should the dock lose power.

DJI M30 pricing starts at $9,999, and the drone will be available to purchase from DJI's online store and through enterprise dealers. The DJI Dock is being tested with select users and will launch sometime in Q4 2022.