FIMI X8 SE vs DJI Mavic Air

Drone  /   /  By el Producente

FIMI, producer of the Xiaomi Mi Drone 4K, released a successor of this popular drone. The new model is way more compact and features foldable rotor arms. They follow the trend to make the drone more convenient for travel. The all new FIMI X8 SE is still larger and heavier than DJI Mavic Air, but this benefits air time and is also cheaper. I’m currently not sure if FIMI is releasing their drone under their own name or if they are using the Xiaomi brand for international distribution. So let’s take a look at the specs to compare:

Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE vs DJI Mavic Air - Size comparison (by Sami Luo)

FIMI X8 SE vs DJI Mavic Air – Size comparison (by Sami Luo)

 

FIMI X8 SE  vs DJI Spark

Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE vs DJI Mavic Air

FIMI X8 SE vs DJI Mavic Air

 

* FIMI X8SE: no wind, 28 km/h – Mavic Air: no wind, 25 km/h

As mentioned FIMI X8 drone is larger and heavier than DJI Mavic Air. This benefits max. flight time which is 12 min. longer for FIMI X8, or on other words more than 50% longer than Mavic Air! The other specs seem to be comparable, about the same distance and speed. This of course is influenced by weather conditions and surroundings (distance).

 

FIMI X8 SE  vs DJI Spark – Camera Specs

Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE vs DJI Mavic Air

FIMI X8 SE vs DJI Mavic Air – Camera Specs

 

 

Here’s a frame grab of a video recorded in 4K with 30fps by Sami Luo. The video is embedded at the end of this article.

Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE vs DJI Mavic Air - Frame Grab 4K 30fps (by Sami Luo)

FIMI X8 SE vs DJI Mavic Air – Frame Grab 4K 30fps (by Sami Luo)

 

There is a minor difference when looking at the lens specifications. DJI Mavic Air offers a bit wider FOV with 85° while FIMI X8 SE is a bit narrower at 78.8°. Light sensitivity is better with FIMI X8 as aperture is f/2.2 while Mavic Air offers f/2.8. So FIMI should perform a bit better in low light situations but therefore requires faster shutter in bright sunlight. Let’s see if there will be ND filters available for FIMI X8 SE to better cope with that.

In terms of camera specs FIMI X8 SE and Mavic Air seem pretty comparable. Both offer a 12 MP, 1/2.3″ CMOS sensor and therefore 12 MP photos in .jpg or .dng (RAW) format. Both drones are capable of 4K video recording with 100 Mbps. There are some minor differences in lower resolutions: While DJI Mavic Air offers 2.7k resolution, FIMI X8 SE offers 2.5k resolution. The available frame rates in these resolution settings are the same. FIMI X8 SE offers up to 100 fps in 1080p while DJI Mavic Air offers 120 fps on the other hand in 720p X8 offers a higher frame rate with 200 fps.

Another notable difference: 8GB of internal storage are available on Mavic Air. I really like that feature as you can do some more shots when your SD card is full and battery lasts to keep on flying. Or in case you forgot to insert your microSD card before take off.

 

FIMI X8 SE  vs DJI Spark – Remote Controller

FIMI X8 SE vs DJI Mavic Air - Remote Controller Comparison Review

FIMI X8 SE vs DJI Mavic Air – Remote Controller

 

Since I couldn’t test FIMI X8SE myself right now and there is no manual available, I’m not quite sure about the remote buttons and functions. A visible difference is the way your smartphone is mounted. While you clamp it into brackets below the controller on DJI’s controller, it clamps right in the middle of the FIMI remote. This way the FIMI remote can better handle larger devices such as tablets. The built-in battery is charged via micro-USB cable. I’m not a big fan of that since the drone is using a USB-C cable – so you need to carry both of them or an adapter. Speaking of batteries, similar to the drone, FIMI offers a larger battery and therefore the device is heavier.

 

Intelligent Flight Modes & Features

A big plus of DJI Mavic Air is definitely obstacle avoidance. Mavic Air got sensors facing forwards, backwards and downwards to help you preventing crashes. This is especially useful when using active track or a predefined Quickshot/Cineshot and you are focusing a bit more on an activity rather than the drone. Active Track is available on both drones in similar modes (trace, profile,…). DJI Mavic Air offer a few more Quickshots than FIMI X8 offers CineShots, but still very similar performance.

A great addition on FIMI X8 is the hyper lapse mode. DJI introduced it with Mavic 2, but doesn’t offer an update for Mavic Air so far. Also the Waypoint mode seems very interesting on the graphics, but I need to test that first to give more insights.

 

Accessories

Finally accessories became available online including spare batteries and propellers. FIMI X8 Battery is more expensive compared to 79 USD  for a DJI Mavic Air battery:

Update July 2019

FIMI just launched their official store on Aliexpress where you can get not only propellers and batteries, but also cables, rubber feet and other replacement parts!

 

Spare Batteries & Propellers for FIMI X8 SE & DJI Mavic Air

Spare Batteries & Propellers for FIMI X8 SE & DJI Mavic Air

 

Retailer / Price Comparison

The box of DJI Mavic Air (Standard Packaging, not Fly More) contains a bit more items than the box of FIMI X8 SE:

 

Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE

FIMI Store: 499 USD FIMI closed their store
and opened an Aliexpress store:

Aliexpress (FIMI official store): 503 USD

Gearbest: 424 USD – Coupon Code: 24HFIMIX8 

Banggood: 424 USD – Coupon Code: bgfimix8se10

Amazon: $645.88

 

DJI Mavic Air

DJI Store: 799 USD // 999 USD (Fly More Combo)

Amazon: $739.00 // $798.00 (Fly More Combo)

 

Conclusion

I hope I could give you a bit of an overview what’s similar between DJI Mavic Air and FIMI X8 SE and what’s different. Unfortunately I hadn’t had the chance to fly FIMI X8 so far, while I keep Mavic Air with me on most of my travels. My thoughts after comparing the specs: Camera & gimbal seem to be pretty equal on paper but take a look at Sami’s video for a 1:1 comparison. FIMI X8 is larger and heavier, but as said, this benefits flight time. DJI Mavic Air has some more features such as obstacle avoidance (sensors) and a few more flight modes, but also a higher price tag.

Speaking of price: The limited pre-order price of FIMI X8 has ended and the regular price of 499 USD is shown on FIMI’s website. There are still some campaigns with coupon codes on Banggood & Gearbest, that’s why I published this article before actual testing FIMI X8 if you want to benefit from those deals. Stay tuned!

 

Video Comparison FIMI X8 SE vs DJI Mavic Air

Video comparison of both drones by Sami Luo:

 

Here’s a demo footage clip shot by Tech’s world – shot in 4K with 30fps.

 

Here’s a in depth review with pros and cons by Dustin Dunill

 

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