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Xiaomi, through the brand Mijia, has entered the action cam segment. This Xiaomi Mijia 4K (Check on Amazon.com), stands out for a number of different things: some good, some bad. So let’s see how it measures with the competition.
The box includes the Xiaomi Mijia 4K and a (very short) USB to micro USB cable. Apart from the obligatory user manual, there’s nothing else. A waterproof case is always welcomed with these products, but here it is sold separately, and at least it doesn’t cost much.
The design quality of this Xiaomi Mijia 4K is quite high, to the point that the only drawback is that it is not waterproof. This would have partially made up for the lack of a waterproof case inside the box, but of course, it would have complicated things both in terms of design and price.
The beautiful design shows a bit of originality in a segment that lacks imagination. It really looks like a small camera, especially the lens. The front is completely smooth, while the outline is coarse, knurled, and a bit prone to scratches, so be aware of it. On the left side, we find the micro USB port, covered by a rigid sliding door, and not the rubber ones that come off easily: a nice touch.
On the back, there is a large 2.4 inch and highly reactive touch screen display that takes up most of the available space. It’s hard to find such a large one since it makes the device bigger but you will not hear us complaining about it.
At the bottom, we have the large battery compartment, and a bolt to attach a tripod or other accessories. Another nice touch, which makes it easier to use third-party accessories. Pity that the original form and size of this action cam, that we have been praising so far, makes it pretty much impossible to use any kind of universal accessories unless they attach to the aforementioned bolt.
The Xiaomi Mijia 4K uses the well-known Ambarella A12S75 imaging processor. The sensor is a Sony IMX317 1/2.5’’ with 8MP. The optics consist of 7 lenses, with a field of view (FV) of 145° and an f/2.8 aperture. There is no optical stabilization, but an electronic “6-axes” one, thanks to the gyroscope and the accelerometer. The EIS is only available in 1080p at 30 or 60 fps.
There is both Wi-Fi (2.4 GHz) and Bluetooth connectivity, in order to pair it with a smartphone or to connect external accessories, such as a remote. The battery capacity measures 1,450mAh.
There are 9 modes, each with its own using set-up and limitations, which we will sum up in a nutshell:
- 4K (3,840×2,160 pixels) at 30 fps
- 2,5K (2,560×1,440 pixels) at 30 fps
- 1080p (1,920×1,080 pixels) at 100/60/30 fps
- 720p (1,280×720 pixels) at 200 fps
- 4K, 2.5K and 1080p at 30 fps with 0.5/1/2/5/10/30/60 seconds
- 8x in 720p or 4x or 2x in Full HD
- The resolutions are those indicated in “video”, with 1/2/5 minute loops
- 1080p video resolution (1,920×1,080 pixels) at 60 or 30 fps, with shooting intervals of 5/10/30/60 seconds
- 6 megapixel (2,880×2,160 pixels) 4.3
- 8 megapixel (3,840×2,160 pixels) 16.9
- output in jpg or jpg+dng (RAW)
- Auto shoot at 3/5/10/15 seconds
- 3/5/10 poses per second; 10 poses in 2 seconds; 10 poses in 3 seconds; 30 poses in 6 seconds
- Intervals of 0.5/1/2/5/10/30/60 seconds
Quality and user experience
The Xiaomi Mijia 4K puts you at ease. The screen is always reactive to your controls. The user interface is sleek and the options, although many, are never redundant. The display quality is not excellent, but it is difficult to demand more from a device this cheap. The brightness is pretty good, although the screen is not easily readable outdoors.
The quality of 4K videos is good. They have well defined the colors seem natural, perhaps too much. If you do not like them, you can select the “vivid” option, which increases color saturation, thankfully not too much. Full HD videos lose more definition than we would have expected. It’s not a big deal, but it’s noticeable.
The dynamic range is in line with the competition, but this Mijia 4K handles brightness changes very quickly. The result is that even in case of high contrast areas, you should still be able to pull out some nice video footage.
At night, both photos and videos have some noise creep in and light handling is not very good. Given the overall quality, it is hard to say that we have been expecting more.
The smartphone app to manage the Xiaomi Mijia 4K is called Mi Home. The interface is very clean and easy to use, and overall we have appreciated its straightforwardness and simplicity.
However, sometimes we have had problems to pair the smartphone with the action cam. Luckily, the app is not indispensable for the use of the Mijia 4K, which can be operated independently.
Two hours of 4K video at 30 fps, and three hours of Full HD video at 40 fps. All this is only possible thanks to the generous battery of 1,450mAh. It’s a pity that the battery indicator on the screen is not too precise, and it quickly swings from what seems to be a decent amount of remaining battery, to the “red area”.
The Xiaomi Mijia 4K costs (Check on Amazon.com) which is definitely a good deal.
The Xiaomi Mijia 4K is the best budget action cam. It lacks nothing and the overall quality is in line with what you would expect from a product in this price range. Unfortunately, it comes with no accessories included in the package, but the price remains competitive.