Key Features – Fimi X8 Mini
- 12MP, 1/2.6-inch CMOS sensor
- F2.0 aperture
- 4k@30fps, 2.7k@30fps
- 3-axis gimbal
- F-log HDR video
- 30 minutes of flight time (31 with Pro battery)
- An upgraded TDMA transmission system
- 8km range
- Intelligent flight modes
- 4 QuickShots
Key Features – DJI Mini 2
- 12MP, 1/2.3-inch Sensor
- F2.8 aperture
- 4k@30fps, 2.7k@60fps
- 3-axis gimbal
- HDR support for videos and images
- 31 minutes of flight time
- OcuSync 2.0 transmission system
- 10km range
- No intelligent flight modes
- 5 Quickshots
Is the DJI Mini 2 still the best sub-250g drone or will the new Fimi X8 Mini drone take its no.1 position? In this article, I will compare the two mini drones and see which one comes out on top in the battle between the Fimi X8 Mini vs the DJI Mini 2 drone.
One of the main reasons for the popularity of sub-250g drones is that if you live in the USA and plan on flying drones for recreational purposes, you will not need to register it. Their lightweight and compact design also make them the perfect drone to travel around and makes a great choice for people looking to get into drone photography.
So, how do both these drones stack up against each other, and which one is suitable for you? To help you decide, I have compared some of the major features of each drone to see which one comes out on top.
Fimi X8 Mini vs DJI Mini 2 – Camera
The first feature we shall compare is probably the most popular feature in any drone and that is its camera.
The Fimi X8 Mini comes with a 1/2.6-inch CMOS sensor with a fixed f2.0 aperture and incorporates an image chipset from Hisilicon that uses AI to help reduce noise for night-time and evening photography. The camera can record video footage in 4k at 30fps and has a recording speed of 100Mbps. Still images are captured in 12MP with support for both RAW & JPEG formats.
HDR is supported for both videos and photos and it comes with a 3* digital zoom. A fantastic all-around camera and one of the best camera drones for under $500.
The DJI Mini 2 comes with a slightly larger sensor which is usually preferred by photographers, although its f2.8 aperture is smaller which means that night-time photography will not be as good as what can be captured by the X8 Mini drone. It can capture images in both RAW & JPEG formats at 12MP and records 4k video HDR footage at 100Mbps.
A feature that the Mini 2 has which will please photographers is auto exposure bracketing (AEB), in this shooting mode, the camera takes up to 3 photos, all with different levels of exposure, and stitches them up for a high-resolution HDR image. The Mini also has 2* zooming for 4K/2.7K videos and 4*zooming for 1080p with the quality remaining lossless with 2* zoom.
Both cameras allow you to capture panorama photography, with a Mini 2 having a few more shooting options and they are stabilised by a 3-axis gimbal for super smooth and distortion-free videos and photos.
While both cameras are impressive, I believe, overall, the DJI Mini 2 just edges out the X8 Mini drone in this department.
Fimi X8 Mini vs DJI Mini 2 – Design
When it comes to drone design, DJI has always led the way and others have followed, their original Mavic drone popularised the foldable design and has been copied by smaller drone brands. The Fimi X8 Mini and the DJI Mini 2 look very similar, both are small foldable drones that are lightweight and very compact in their folded form.
The DJI Mini 2 measures 24.5*28.9*5.6 cm in its unfolded form and weighs 249g, which means that if you live in the USA, there is no need the drone with the FAA if you plan on using it for recreational purposes. The rules and regulations regarding drone flight will be different in countries like the UK and Canada, so please do make yourself familiar with what they are and comply with them.
The Fimi X8 Mini is slightly smaller but not by much and it weighs 258g with the standard lithium-ion battery you get with the drone package. However, there is also a pro lithium polymer battery that weighs 86g and gives the drone an overall weight of 242g, and also provides a slightly longer flight time.
Both drones have a GNSS module that can connect with three satellite systems, while the Mini 2 connects with GPS, GLONASS, and GALILEO, the X8 Mini connects with the first two and BEIDOU.
They also have optical flow sensors that will allow you to fly in areas that have a weak GNSS signal.
Battery Life & Flight Time
The Fimi X8 Mini comes with a lithium-ion battery as standard which has a 7.2v 2400mAh charge and gives the drone a flight time of around 28-30 minutes. You can also purchase a 2S lithium polymer battery, which is lighter and provides a slightly longer flight time of around 31 minutes.
As for the DJI Mini 2, it also comes with a similar flight time of around 31 minutes and is powered by a 7.7v 2250mAh lithium polymer battery.
While 30 minutes is a good flight time for any drone, if you want to extend the flight time, its best to purchase at least one extra battery so you will not have to wait a few hours for the battery to fully recharge before being able to fly again.
Intelligent Flight Modes
One of the criticisms of the original Mavic Mini was that it did not come with any autonomous flight modes, this was expected to be rectified with the Mini 2, however, DJI decided to leave it out of this drone as well.
While DJI Mini 2 does not come with autonomous flight modes, it does come with a feature called Quickshots, which allows drone pilots to capture short professional videos from different angles, without having to control the drone. The Quickshots flight modes are pre-programmed to fly in certain ways while the pilot concentrates on recording a short video.
The Fimi X8 Mini also has the same feature, however, it also comes with 3 intelligent flight modes, which gives it an edge over the Mini 2.
The intelligent flight modes include active track, which allows the drone to follow a moving object from behind, parallel, or from a stationary position. It also has orbit mode that will circle around a point of interest and tap fly which allows you to tap on positions on the drone app and the drone will automatically fly to that position.
Both drones come with automatic return to home function, this feature is activated automatically whenever the drone loses connection with the controller or when the battery gets low on charge.
Remote Controller, Transmission Range & App
The Mini 2 controller is similar to that of the Mavic Air 2, it’s larger than the usual Mavic controller and is kind of bulky. It uses DJI’s innovative OcuSync 2.0 transmission technology that reduces latency for video transmission and in perfect conditions, the drone can be controlled from a range of 10km. Live video footage is transmitted in 720p and as long as the weather is good and there is no interference, the quality is very good.
To view the FPV feed, you will need to download the DJI Fly App, it’s an excellent app that has a nice UI, is very easy to use, and comes with simple tutorials to get people started. The app has a simple video editing feature that will allow you to enhance your videos and share them on your social media accounts.
The X8 Mini has a much smaller controller which many will find more comfortable to hold. It doesn’t require a separate attachment to hold your smartphone as the left-hand side of the controller can be extended that will allow you to insert your phone between the two handles. It uses an updated TDMA transmission system for a smoother live video feed and a transmission range of 8km. I actually prefer this controller mainly because of its more compact design which makes it easier to carry around.
There is a new app for this drone called the Fimi Navi Mini and it’s similar to the original Navi app but does come with a couple of extra features like allowing you to live stream your video feed on YouTube and make simple edits to your images and photos.
As you would expect from DJI and Fimi, the drone performs exceptionally well, they easy to operate and very fun to fly. Their flight stability is good as the hovering capability of both drones and both hold up relatively well in mildly windy conditions. Video and image quality is good and all of their main features like automatic return to home, Quickshots and intelligent flight modes work as advertised.
So, which drone is the better overall drone, personally I think the Fimi X8 Mini edges the DJI Mini 2 simply because it comes with several intelligent flight modes. However, both drones have very similar features and which one you choose may come down to which brand you personally prefer, which in most cases, will mean the DJI Mini 2. Whichever one you choose, both are the best drones in their price and weight category.