Xiaomi is releasing their version of a sub-250 gram drone with the Fimi X8 Mini. This little foldable drone will be the first real competition to the DJI Mini lineup. It features a 4K camera and has a handful of intelligent flight modes. Can it stand up to the DJI Mavic Mini and Mini 2? Let’s take a closer look.
Xiaomi Fimi X8 Mini
The Fimi X8 Mini will actually be sold in two different versions. There is a standard version that is 258 grams and a Pro version that weighs 245 grams. The lighter Pro version has a slightly better flight time because it uses a LiPo battery and the standard uses a Li-ion.
The Pro version should get up to 31 minutes of flight time and the Standard version will be limited to 30 minutes. It is an interesting choice to include two versions but the Standard version was created for those that don’t need to worry about weight limits and will likely save the consumer a few dollars. I would skip the Standard version and opt for the lighter Pro.
The Fimi X8 Mini will have a range of up to 8000 meters, which is just under 5 miles. Xiaomi accomplishes this with their new TDMA transmission system. It will use GPS, GLONASS, and BEIDOU technology to help keep it stable. You will get low battery warnings, power warnings, wind warnings, and no-fly zone warnings via the app.
Fimi X8 Mini Camera
The X8 Mini camera uses a Sony 1/2.6″ CMOS sensor. The field of view is 80-degrees and has a max bitrate of 100 Mbps. You’ll be able to capture 4K footage at 30/25/24 fps. The pictures are 12MP and you can capture them in JPG or DNG. There is even an HDR mode. The camera does sit on a full three-axis gimbal.
The X8 Mini does have a handful of intelligent flight modes and some that the DJI Mini series lacks. The most significant is a follow-me or tracking mode. It also boasts flight planning, timelapse, night mode, digital zoom, panorama, and the ability to live stream from the app.
The Fimi Mini, like its larger brother the Fimi X8, has precision landing where it points the camera downward and looks for a launchpad to land on. It also has claims class 5 wind resistance. You can even fly the Fimi X8 Mini using just your smartphone.
Fimi Mini vs DJI Mini 2
So the question is should you opt for the Xiaomi Mini or the DJI Mini 2? First, I would avoid the standard version. With laws and regulations tightening on drones over 250 grams that is a non-starter. The Pro version however is a little intriguing. The follow-me feature is something that DJI Mini 2 owners wish they had but is it enough?
Typically Xiaomi makes a good but not great product. Their camera will be good but the DJI product will still outshine it. If you are anti-DJI or just want an alternative then the Fimi Mini is the first real option that weighs less than 250 grams. This looks like a good drone but the higher price and lack of polish probably still pushes the Mini 2 as the better sub 250-gram drone. It is however a worthy competitor at its $449 price tag.
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