I was dying to purchase an action camera, but it was either too pricey or I was just too busy to go and grab it. One day, however, I finally bought this awesome device.
The outer look and the housing
The camera looks the same as any other action camera. They all are reminiscent of GoPro, their predecessor.
It is well built and assembled. The material and all details are of a supreme quality like with all Xiaomi products actually. The plastic is quality and looks decent.
The camera has 3 buttons:
The shutter button, the power/mode button and a WI-FI button.
Also, each side of the camera has a LED, which is good, because it always tells you what mode the camera is in at the moment.
The LEDs flashing non-stop means that the camera is waiting for recording a video, if they don’t flash, it means that you are in a camera mode, if they flicker, the camera is in process of recording a video.
WI-FI has a specific button and a free-standing LED. This function is meant for connecting the camera with your phone via an app.
Moreover, this camera is mountable at the bottom, so you can pair it with your tripod or other accessories, which is a huge plus, because you won’t need any extra accessories, cases, etc to mount the camera on a tripod.
On the back you can find the battery compartment and micro USB, HDMI and micro SD slots.
The battery compartment
By the way, the cap that covers these slots may be easily lost, so be careful with it.
At 1100 mah the battery can survive within 40 minutes of continuous recording.
If you turn on wifi, it will drain even faster. So, I recommend you purchase a few extra batteries just in case.
The battery pack
The quality of pictures and videos:
The camera may record HD videos at 120 fps, FullHD at 60 fps and 2K at 30 fps.
The quality of a picture is identical to that of the GoPro Hero 3 camera. Additionally, it takes 12 mp photos.
The quality of the picture is even better than that of a front-facing camera on a phone, so Xiaomi Yi can be easily used for taking photos. Here are some examples:
The main downside of this camera is the sound quality. The sound is so bad, low and flat. It’s alright in quiet room or when you don’t need any sounds, but if you are planning on posting the video to social networks, it’s gonna be a hassle to deal with. The sound will have to be recorded separately.
The Xiaomi Yi app works alright. Via this app you can change some settings and control the camera. More than that you can download recorded videos, etc to your phone, if required. To do this, you just turn on wifi on your camera and on your phone.
By the way, I’m speaking about Android now, so I don’t know how it functions with IOS.
The Chinese online shops offer a wide range of authentic and inauthentic accessories for this camera. I purchased the remote controller and a tripod immediately and it was a total steal.
I would also advise you buying a waterproof case, a few extra batteries and probably a little tripod also.
My overall thoughts:
It’s probably the best action camera so far. The price/quality ratio is amazing. It retails for about $70 now.
The pros, plus the awesome price outweigh all the cons, which are in the minority anyway.
If money is not an issue for you, you can choose some other options from Sony or GoPro that ensure better quality, but if you want to have a decent and pretty quality action camera without spending big bucks, Xiaomi Yi is the right choice for you.