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First Impressions: Xiaomi Yi Action Camera

June 12, 2015 - Written By Nick Sutrich

Xiaomi is known the world over for their quality yet inexpensive devices, often pushing the envelope of what was thought possible for a given price range.  Besides making smartphones the Chinese manufacturer has branched out into all sorts of products, from TV’s to Android-powered set-top boxes, chargers and even a GoPro competitor called the Yi.  It’s this little camera that we’re taking a look at today, and we’re bringing it to you via an eyes-on video for you to watch.  In the video I give my initial impressions of the camera including both the pictures and video that it takes, as well as interfacing with the device itself.

For $90 it’s easy to see why this little camera has been so popular since its launch, besting the GoPro’s cheapest device by about $40 depending on where you look.  Inside the box you’ll find the camera itself, which is a small plastic device with a protruding fish-eye lens on the front.  Besides the camera you’ll also find a selfie stick, micro USB cable and of course the battery which is separate from the camera in the box.  It’s a pretty bare-bones experience out of the box, and since the manual is in Chinese it’s a little difficult to get working if you don’t feel like toying with it or can’t read Chinese.  Turning on the device is obvious; holding down the power button will turn the device on and off, denoted by an audible beep.

The camera itself shoots 1080p video and takes 16-megapixel pictures via a Sony sensor.  Since the lens is a fish-eye lens you’re going to get a slightly distorted view of the world through the eyes of the camera, but it’s designed to capture the maximum amount of space without making you nauseous via the odd angle.  The Xiaomi Yi camera is readily available online to buy including at Amazon, so this isn’t your typical Xiaomi product that’s hard to get.  We’ll have the full review out soon, but in the meantime be sure to check out the first impressions video below, as well as the Amazon link to check out the price and all available accessories for it!