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Today I was testing the new Xiaomi Yi camera and the GoPro Hero 3 black edition.

Video Review

 

This is a short summary including a comparison video, photos and a technical data overview of these cameras:

Updated: June 9th

Let’s start with their hardware:

 

Xiaomi Yi vs GoPro Hero 3 black Specs

GoPro Hero 3 black edition

  • Sensor: 12 Megapixel Sensor (Sony)
  • Lens: 128°
  • Resolution:
    • 4K – only 15 fps max.
    • 1080p – max. 60fps
    • 720p – max. 120 fps
  • Display: Data only, live view optional (backpack)
  • Battery: 1050 mAh
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi (no Bluetooth), iOS & Android App
  • Dimension: 59x41x21 mm
  • Weight: 75g
  • Accessories: Underwater case included
  • Price:

 

Xiaomi Yi:

  • Sensor: 16 Megapixel Sensor (Sony Exmor)
  • Lens: 170° angle
  • Resolution:
    • 2K – max. 30fps
    • 1080p – max. 60fps
    • 720p – max. 120fps
  • Display: No Display
  • Battery: 1010 mAh
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi & Bluetooth (iOS & Android App, Remote Control)
  • Dimension: 60,4x42x21,2 mm
  • Weight: 72g
  • Accessories: Underwater case not included (27 USD – Banggood)
  • Price:

 

 

Frame Comparison

Thes frames are taken out of the Xiaomi Yi vs GoPro Hero 3 black video.

This is a frame taken from the video shot with the Xiaomi Yi:

Xiaomi Yi Screenshot

Xiaomi Yi Screenshot

And this is the one from the GoPro Hero 3 black edition:

GoPro

 

Test Environment

Both cameras were mounted on the same plate without underwater case (no additional layer over the lens). The Xiaomi Yi was mounted directly with the built in 1/4″ screw, the GoPro was mounted with “the Frame”. No picture or sound editing was done, only the source files were used as they came straight from the camera.

 

Updated Review

For I production I was shooting with 1 Xiaomi and 2 GoPro Hero 3 black. Unfortunately I can’t share the images, but I will share my thoughts:

Image
I was very satisfied with the image sharpness, exposure and color of the Xiaomi Yi, maybe a little too much saturation, but easy to fix in post.
One GoPro was running in “normal” auto mode and one was set to protunes. Nevertheless I preferred the result of the Xiaomi in terms of picture.

Sound
Sound was pretty bad with the Xiaomi – very dull. The GoPro delivered better results in terms of audio quality. I must add that I haven’t done the sound fix described in this blogpost. (I also didn’t need the audio as it was recorded separately.)

Handling
The Xiaomi’s wifi is a bit of a pain. All cameras were running for about 5h (all powered via USB and wall socket). I remote controlled all of them with one iPhone. I had no problems connecting to the 2 GoPro wifis and was also able to turn the cameras an and off via wifi and also never had a problem to start recording or change settings (GoPro’s superview particularly). When I connected first to the Xiaomi it was no problem to start and stop recording, but when I tried to reconnect after changing to a GoPro I couldn’t connect to the camera’s wifi. I had to turn the Xiaomi on and off to get connection again. I hope that will improve with further Firmware and App updates (Firmware 1.0.12 and iOS 1.5 were used).

Conclusion
Super happy with the image, not with the handling. A solution could be the upcoming bluetooth remote.
Comparing the price of these cameras, the Xiaomi really surprises me in a very positiv way. As the camera is pretty new and being the first from the company I patient that the wifi issues will be solved.
As the problems also just occurred when reconnecting I thinl it is also not a big deal for “normal” handling.

I’ll keep you updated when I collect more experience…

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