By
Reviewed by
Reviewed by
Last updated: May 09, 2022

Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE Review: High-End Features Without Breaking the Bank (Summer 2022)

Extreme Fliers is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here
By
Reviewed by
Reviewed by
Last updated: May 09, 2022
Extreme Fliers is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here
Ideal for:
  • Beginner hobbyists looking for a photography drone
  • Intermediate pilots that prioritize affordability
  • Travel photographers or videographers
Main features:
  • Convenient foldable design
  • 4K 100 Mbps video recording in 30 fps
  • 5 km / 3.1 miles range
Editor's Rating
9.6
out of 10
  • Design and build 9.8
  • Performance 9.6
  • Special features 9.5
  • Flight time 9.5
Users’ Rating
4.4
out of 5
  • 80 Users’ Ratings rating rating rating rating rating
    rating
    rating rating rating rating rating
    4.4
    out of
    5
    80 Users’ Ratings
    • 5 stars
      55%
    • 4 stars
      34%
    • 3 stars
      8%
    • 2 stars
      4%
    • 1 stars
      0%
  • Add your rating:
Extreme Fliers is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here

If you’re looking for an effective way to capture amazing landscape shots, then drones are the best option. They are easy to fly, and when they are equipped with good cameras, they can deliver high-quality images with pin-sharp resolution in 4K and Full HD. There’s just one challenge; drones don’t come cheap—especially not the ones used in professional photography. In fact, most drones with a 4K camera can cost as much as $1,000! If you’re just a hobbyist looking for a drone with a ton of cool features and doesn’t cost a fortune, then you’d definitely enjoy this Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE review. There’s a high chance it’s been showing up in your research, and you’re probably wondering, is it a worthy purchase? Here’s everything you need to know about the Xiaomin FIM X8 drone!

Rankings

Our #3 pick for the best drones under 600

Specifications

Control Type
Remote control
Flying Time
Up to 35 min
Control Range
Up to 8 km
Top Speed
40 mph
Weight
27.9 oz
Dimensions
8 x 4.2 x 2.8 inches
Camera
Sony IMX378 Sensor, 12MP
App
Fimi Navi 2020

Review

Drones have come a long way from simply being military tools to rapidly breaking through the consumer market. In fact, currently, the uses of drones go beyond photography, and they’re also being used for commercial area surveillance, remote sensing, exploration of oils, gas & minerals, real estate & construction, and recreational use. This scope of use has also widened, and according to the Washington Post Trusted Source AI-enhanced drones could aid in disaster rescues - The Washington Post Researchers say scream-sensing drones might one day play a role in disaster response. www.washingtonpost.com , drones are now being used to locate disaster survivors!

If you’re looking for a high-quality drone that matches all the high-end features but don’t require you to break into a bank to buy it, then Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE should be one of your top picks. We have compiled a comprehensive guide into the most important factors you should consider, including flight modes, build quality, accessories & gear, etc. Check out our review on Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE features below!

Design and Functionality

Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE Review: High-End Features Without Breaking the Bank (Summer 2022)

Thanks to the black front and white combination, the Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE looks like a stormtrooper from Star Wars

The best kinds of drones strike the perfect balance between aesthetics and functionality. One of the main mistakes drone manufacturers make is focusing so much on the capabilities of the device that they completely forget about aesthetics. Well, if you’re using your drone for recreational purposes or even photography, having a well-designed drone is a priority. You not only want a drone that works flawlessly but also looks as good as it functions, which is what you’ll get with the Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE model.

Our first impression when we took this model out of the box was that it was heavier than it looked. Not so much that the flying experience would be impacted, just enough that it’s noticeable. This drone has a beautiful design, and we were particularly impressed by how well-crafted the wings are. The manufacturers included travel protection when wrapping the gimbal, so we had to remove it before we could start our piloting experience. The protection, however, keeps the gimbal safe, so be sure not to remove it during transportation, or you risk damaging the device.

We couldn’t help but notice how the black front and white combination gave the Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE the appearance of stormtroopers from Star Wars. This model is also foldable and can conveniently fit into your backpack, but you can also use its original packaging.

Build Quality

Fimi and Xiaomi are 2 of the most common household names when it comes to quality consumer products. Fimi, a Chinese company that has been in the market for 7 years, is a startup that was founded under the Xiaomi ecosystem. It’s known for manufacturing action cams, smartphone gimbals, and drones. Xiaomi, on the other hand, is well known for its wide range of smartphones and smart devices and, most importantly, perfectly balancing the price/ performance ratio. It then goes without saying that a product of the 2 brands is not only affordable but also has great build quality.

The quality of construction of a drone highly impacts its functionality and durability. If you go for a drone with poor build quality, then it will be susceptible to damage and won’t last long. The good news is that you don’t have to compromise on quality when it comes to the Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE drone. We found its build quality to be robust, reliable, and well-made. It comes with a full set of extra propellers should you need a replacement and the clamps are tight. The battery compartment is well-secured, while the wings are well-engineered for efficient flying. Overall, the Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE has superior build standards that are mostly found in high-end drones, and the best part is that it’s relatively affordable.

Battery and Flight Time

Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE Review: High-End Features Without Breaking the Bank (Summer 2022)

The FIMI X8 SE rechargeable batteries offer you up to about 35 minutes of flight time and take around 120 minutes to fully charge.

The quality of your drone-flying experience is highly determined by the battery capacity and the flying time of the model. This is why we recommend that before you settle on a particular drone, you first map out your individual needs and then identify whether your preferred model can satisfy them. For instance, if you’re primarily buying a drone to take aerial photography shots, it would be impractical to go for a model with a flight time of 7 minutes. This battery life would, however, be sufficient for recreational flying.

Short battery life is one of the major obstacles to drone flying. Initially, drones would only sustain a flight time of 10 minutes, but modern technological advancements have made it possible for them to last up to half an hour on one battery. The Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE model uses a 4500mAH battery that can offer you up to about 35 minutes of flight time. You should, however, note that under normal conditions, it lasts for half an hour.

One of the other factors you should consider when it comes to flight time is the time it takes for the battery to fully charge after depletion. For instance, if the battery only gives you 10 minutes worth of flight time but takes more than 2 hours to charge, then you’ll be forced to buy more batteries to fulfill your needs, incurring additional expenses. This is especially true when you need a drone for aerial photography or other commercial purposes.

The Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE batteries are rechargeable and take around 120 minutes to fully charge. With an average flight time of 33 minutes, we recommend that you get replacement batteries to last you through your projects.

Flight Modes

Most high-end drones come with several flight modes, and the Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE is no different. Its flight modes are beginner-friendly, and we were impressed by the minimal effort required to operate the drone. They also come in handy if you’re using the drone to take pictures and videos.

  1. Smart tracking mode: this feature is powered by AI technology, and it allows you to track the movements of your drone in 3 main ways; from different angles, from a parallel perspective, and from behind. The best part is that these modes are great for outdoor activities such as taking area shots, and you’re able to record your movements hands-free!
  2. Cine shots: this feature is a dream come true for photographers, and it allows you to take amazing shots at the touch of a button. It has 4 different modes:
  • Circle: this is where the drone revolves around the target when taking shots. For instance, assuming you’re taking drone videos for a wedding, you can use this feature to orbit the bride & groom and get close-up images of them from different angles.
  • Dronie: this is simply the selfie version of a drone. With this feature, you can use your Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE mode to lock onto yourself or the intended target. The drone will then fly in an upward motion and then back to take a selfie.
  • Rocket: this feature enables the drone to fly when the camera is pointing downward to take clear images of the intended subject.
  • Rocket: When you fly your drone in this mode, it will make the movement as when in Circle mode, but the difference is that instead of orbiting around the subject after, the device will move in a spiral pattern.
  1. Flight planning: Part of the fun of flying a drone lies in making strategic flight plans. This feature is highly revolutionary & futuristic, and we won’t be surprised if it takes over the delivery industry soon. The flight planning mode allows you to draw your desired flight path on the drone app. The drone then intelligently follows the set path and then comes back to you.
  2. Tap-Fly: this feature allows you to map out the destination your drone should go to. For instance, you can send it to a particular place on the map.
  3. Tripod: when you use this mode, the drone reduces its speed and moves slowly to allow you to capture shots as though you were using a tripod. This reduces blurs that are most common when shooting in windy conditions.
  4. Cinematic mode: this feature makes the drone’s accelerations, movements, and camera angle changes smooth, improving the clarity of the shots and making them more cinematic.
  5. Waypoint: this feature is very interesting. It allows you to set points on Google maps or a path that you’d like your drone to take, and this model will automatically fly off. The best part is that you can input commands of what you’d like your drone to do once it gets to the set points. For instance, you can send the drone to the local town and have it take a 10-second video before coming back to you.
  6. SAR: this mode comes in handy when you’re trying to look for something or simply explore. It displays the GPOs coordinates at the top of your screen, and you can use a slider to zoom your camera digitally.
  7. Smart track: you can use this feature to track objects or subjects. For instance, if you choose to track a cyclist, the drone will frame them and then keep up with them. This feature works very well in Full HD mode.
  8. Course lock: this feature locks the movement of the drone in one direction. This means that when the feature is on, even when you try to turn the drone in a different direction, it will still maintain its flight direction.

Camera

Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE Review: High-End Features Without Breaking the Bank (Summer 2022)

The camera found on this drone is fantastic with its professional image signal processors, K UHD video resolution, and 100-3200 IS range

The Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE drone’s camera is what makes the day. This model has professional image signal processors that can only be found in high-end models. It features a fixed 26mm equivalent F/2.0 lens that’s been mounted on a 3-axis gimbal, the Sony CMOS Sensor is 1/2.6-inch, and even though it’s slightly smaller than the previous models, this doesn’t impact the image quality.

This drone has a 3.54mm focal distance,  100-3200 IS range, 4K UHD video resolution, and a shutter speed of 32~1/8000s. It can also film in 720p in 200FPS, 2k resolution in 60/50/30/24FPS, 4k in 30/25/24FPS and 1080p up to 100FPS. It also has a feature that allows you to film in slow motion.

Other camera features include:

  • 3x Digital Zoom: this allows you to get closer to your intended subject without causing them harm.
  • Time-Lapse Mode: this feature is also supported by intelligent flight modes allowing you to add a touch of flair to your time-lapse videos. It also has lots of other customization features.
  • Built-in panorama: the standard panorama format is 3 x 1, but this model also has a 3 x 3 mode that is rectangular. You can use this feature to capture panoramas in broad formats and can switch from portrait and landscape orientations with one tap.
  • Night shot mode: this feature allows you to capture images in the dark without compromising on detail and clarity. When using this mode, we recommend that you use the tripod mode, especially if there are high winds. This will prevent motion blurs in the frames.

The Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE model is one of the most affordable 4K camera drones. It’s safe to say that the camera specs on this bad boy are worth every dollar you spend on it.

Photo and Video Quality

Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE Review: High-End Features Without Breaking the Bank (Summer 2022)

The Sony ½.3 inch camera sensor with HDR capabilities allows you to capture objects in greater detail and provide you a great color performance

The camera quality is undoubtedly the major highlight of the Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE model. One of the reasons why drones are rapidly gaining popularity is because they allow you to view the world from a different perspective, and with this model, you’ll see it in pure HD. This model has a 4K camera mounted on a 3 axis mechanical gimbal that stabilizes it and eliminates distortions that tend to mess with the image and video quality. This ensures that you get nothing short of ultra-smooth visuals even when the weather is windy.

You can use this camera to live stream videos in 30FPS and upload them on your smartphone. This makes it easy for you to edit your videos and then share them on social media. The Sony ½.3 inch sensor on the camera, coupled with its HDR capabilities, allows you to capture your subjects in greater detail and provide you with better color performance that makes your visuals pop. This camera can also take aerial photos in 12MP in  DNG RAW and JPEG format. It also has a 100 to 3,200 IS range which is highly impressive. You can easily capture your videos and images from different angles as the mechanical gimbal has a 90° rotation, giving you more range.

For a sensor this size, the footage captured by this drone is great. If you choose to utilize the default settings, you’ll still enjoy sharp images and a natural color rendering. FIMI upgraded this model and reduced vignettes and overexposures that were present in past models, especially in the corners as well as the blue cast.

Speed

On average, drones fly at around 45 miles per hour, but the FAA’s legal limit is much higher at 100mph. The Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE model has a great transmission speed to ensure your video streams don’t have lag. It’s compact, has foldable wings, and comes in an ergonomic design that enhances its speed. When the wings are folded in, this drone has small dimensions of 204 x 106 x 72.6 millimeters, which is roughly the size of a smartphone. Its take-off weight is 790grams and can reach top speeds of upto 40 mph, which is within the industry standards.

The maximum flight altitude of this drone is 500 meters, and it can only fly for up to 5 km, which is sufficient for some commercial projects. Since this drone doesn’t have additional WIFI shielding, if you fly it out of its normal range, you may start losing signals. When this happens, it will engage the automatic return home feature and get back within range. You should, however, note that it takes a while to master precision landing. If the drone doesn’t recognize the scene or location it’s in; it will keep loitering around the take-off location until it fully recognizes it. This becomes a major problem on windy days, and you may have to land it manually due to the constant drifts.

Controller and App

Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE Review: High-End Features Without Breaking the Bank (Summer 2022)

The FIMI X8 SE comes with a well-designed controller that allows you to attach your smartphone

The Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE has one of the best-designed remote controllers in the market. It’s aesthetically appealing and fits well in your hands. All the buttons are easy to reach, enhancing your drone flying experience, and this feature has a control range of 5 km, which is higher than most models.

Perhaps the most intriguing feature of the remote controller is that it allows you to attach your smartphone. This attachment stretches from either end of the controller and while you don’t have to connect your phone, doing so allows you to use the available intelligent flight modes and to enjoy some of the drone’s features, such as FPV.

Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE has been praised for having one of the most intuitive controls, and we agree. The controller is easy to use for both beginner and intermediate drone pilots and has clearly labeled buttons for taking videos & cameras, take off, and landing.
It also has a button for controlling the drone axis. Expert pilots particularly find this feature helpful as it allows them to take the best travel shots. In addition to functional controls such as mode selection, flight controls, gumball pitch, and the 1-click return home, this controller also has a customizable joystick. It’s detachable, and you can use it to program the app. You should, however, note that once you let go of the control stick, your drone may drift like 5º from the target location. This makes it difficult for you to make precise movements, but this is easy once you account for the drift.

You can also use the FIMI Navi app to control your drone. It’s compatible with both iOS and Android and is the centerpiece of the drone’s control. To get the most out of it, make sure you familiarize yourself with all the features and configure your preferred settings. For instance, you can configure the “Failsafe Return To Home” feature so that your drone can return to the departure point should oy lose its connection.

Dimensions and Weight

The Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE drone is relatively small and compact, more so when you fold the wings. It measures 8 x 4.2 x 2.8 inches and only weighs 27 ounces. This makes it highly portable and is perfect for when you have out-of-town jobs.

Accessories and Gear

Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE Review: High-End Features Without Breaking the Bank (Summer 2022)

The drone comes with multiple accessories like adaptor, propellers, controller, rechargeable batteries, AC cable, and USB cables

The Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE package comes with several items, including;

  • The drone
  • Adaptor
  • 4 Propellers
  • Controller
  • Battery (11.4V 4500mAh Smart Lipo Battery)
  • AC Cable
  • 3 USB-Cables (Micro-USB, Apple Lightning, and USB Type-C)

This drone also comes with a manual to help you assemble it with ease. The only important thing that’s required to be included in the package is a microSD card to store your photos and recordings. We also recommend that you get a replacement battery, carrying bag, and replacement propellers.

Price

This drone costs about $500, which is highly affordable. Most of the features available in this model are only available in high-end models, which cost from $1,000 onwards. Overall, the Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE is a great bargain.

Other Features

Some of the other important features of the Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE include:

  • Dual GPS feature that helps you keep track of your done and helps with hovering and positioning.
  • High wind resistance. The app also notifies you if it’s too windy and automatically returns the drone home.
  • 2 IMU systems that reduce the risk of your drone falling from the sky when one fails, the other one is automatically activated.
  • Flight planning integration that’s stronger compared to previous models.
  • Precise Visual Position System that helps with landing. This enables the drone to land within 3m of the intended position.
PROS CONS
  • Incredible battery life
  • Controller that’s easy to use
  • High-quality 4k camera
  • Impressive safety features
  • Portability
  • Multiple flight modes
  • Availability of app that’s compatible with iOS and Android
  • Amazing build quality
  • Beginner friendly
  • Lacks an obstacle avoidance feature
  • Doesn’t come with replacement batteries

Conclusion

All factors considered, the Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE is a worthwhile purchase. It has a ton of features that are only available in very expensive models, and it’s highly affordable. Drones’ scope of use is increasing, and according to BBC Trusted Source Drones - BBC News All the latest news about Drones from the BBC www.bbc.co.uk , medical facilities are also using them in the delivery of chemo drugs. The Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE model is further enhancing this scope with the flight planning feature that allows you to map out your desired flight path. Perhaps the most impressive feature is the 4K camera that allows you to take full HD videos and images with ease. The only feature we wish the manufacturer installed is an obstruction avoidance mode, but for the low price this drone is retailing at, this is a worthy compromise. We hope this Xiaomi FIMI X8 SE review helps you make an informed decision!

References

1.
AI-enhanced drones could aid in disaster rescues - The Washington Post
Researchers say scream-sensing drones might one day play a role in disaster response.
2.
Drones - BBC News
All the latest news about Drones from the BBC
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.