Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Xiaomi Yi Camera

Well I got my Xiaomi Yi from Amazon in 2 days. Pretty cool little camera. This post will be edited as I find out more about it and use it in the next months.


RCGroups thread

My Camera Version: YDXJ_v22 (aka z22)
My Current Firmware: v1.2.12 (Stock/Shipping firmware was v1.0.2)

My current SD-Card: Lexar 32gb Micro-SDHC Class-10 UHS-1 (300x-45MB/s)

While I could have used my (mainly DroidPlanner) Android tablet (and what I suspect is a more mature App), I carry an iPhone-5, so I downloaded it's newer iOS App version: v1.12 from the App-Store. All my usage notes (for now) will be with this app.

I had to connect to the Yi's WiFi via Settings like a conventional HotSpot. I ignored the Yi firmware update a couple of times, but on the third run or so it just decided to do it anyway. It did it over WiFi. At the end (after the Yi turns itself off) you turn it back on manually and it's done. Anyway, that's how it's firmware got updated so soon. The App didn't update, but the Yi now has more options.

Took some videos and pics and it works fine so far. Battery seems to last about an hour, but there is a lot going on inside this little camera. From completely off, it takes a few seconds to boot-up. Would have been nice to get a lens-protector.

At the time I ordered from Amazon (Sept. 2015), I got the z22 version. Mine seems to work fine. Not sure if there is much of a difference, but they also have the new Xiaomi Yi z23L version . I doubt there is much of a difference (likely just the latest revision). There is also now an official USA Edition (so get that one if in USA).

Usage Notes:

So, you can use the camera's WiFi while on the ground, but be sure to turn it off before taking off. Both 2.4ghz RC (main Radio-Control) and WiFi/Bluetooth operate on similar 2.4ghz frequencies. They will generally interfere with each other, as this video demonstrates. In this video, notice how poor the range and thru-put gets (laggy) as both fight to use the same 2.4ghz band.

Battery last for 60 minutes (recording at 1080p@30fps) at that video fits on 32gb SD-Card.

In May 2017, iOS App (on iPhone-5s) is updated and still works fine. Downloaded latest camera firmware.


  1. Hi Tesla1856,
    I got an Yiaomi Yi too. I tested the focus on my 50" TV and it seems fine - I don't think I can get it any better. I took some test photos with at highest resolution (with interpolation - at 12 MP the pix looked worst). They look good - BUT!? This claim to be 16 MP camera (for photos) and it may be. I took the same shots with my old 5 MP Fuji Finepix and guess what? Magnified, the Fuji looks better!!! I think their algorithm is much better (the lens too). Luckily, I got the Yi for the video on the copter, so I'll live.

    I have the pitch control of the gimbal on Aux1. I watched videos on that too. They all show the same control function - you turn the knob one mark only and the camera points down - continue turning and the camera points to the belly. Is there a way to "expand" the range of the knob and limit the movement? So, if I am at 0 the camera faces forward and if I turn the knob all the way to the right the camera points directly down.

    To fit all in one post - where can I find what version of firmware I have? I clicked "OK" in MP and it still gives me "New firmware available" every time it starts.

    Thank you very much for your help! I mean it! Luby

    1. On my Eachine gimbal and Taranis radio ... gimbal manual control is gradual as desired. It can also be seen as fine, gradual, and linear in both Open-TX Companion and MissionPlanner (Fail-Safe Testing). Maybe check your radio and/or gimbal programming.

      MP version and ArduCopter (firmware) should be listed in top Windows title.

    2. Thank you - I'll check that. It's so good to know your machine is flying good! I'll try to do Auto trim today if the rain doesn't beat me to the field.


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