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Xiaomi Mi 8 camera review: the best among the best

31 May the presentation of Xiaomi Mi 8, which is the top device of the Chinese manufacturer, was completed. The novelty has top features and of course is equipped with a powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, exactly like Mi MIX 2S, released earlier this year.

This review Xiaomi Mi 8 is dedicated to the camera smartphone, which at the time of the release takes 4 ranked smartphones with the best cameras, dividing it with the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus. The flagship Mi 8 camera has the following characteristics:

  • Camera type: double;
  • Founded camera:
  • Sensor model: Sony IMX363 Exmor RS;
  • Sensor type: CMOS (complementary metal-oxide semiconductor);
  • ISO (light sensitivity): 100 - 3200;
  • Aperture of the lens: f / 1.8;
  • Type of flash: double LED;
  • Image resolution: 4032 x 3024 pixels (12 MP);
  • Video resolution: 3840 x 2160 pixels (8 MP);
  • Video - frame rate / frames per sec .: 30 frames / second;
  • Sensor size: 1 / 2.55 in.;
  • Pixel size: 1,4 μm;
  • Stabilization: yes, optical, 4x axial;
  • FPS with 1080p: 240;
  • FPS with 720p: 240;
  • Additional camera (telephoto):
  • Sensor model: Samsung S5K3M3 (ISOCELL);
  • Image resolution: 4032 x 3024 pixels (12 MP);
  • Pixel size: 1,0 μm;
  • Светосила объектива: f/2.4. Xiaomi Mi 8

Based on the test results, the Xiaomi Mi 8 camera scored 99 points, ahead of the camera of the previously released Mi Mix 2S model in certain aspects. As a result, the device ranks in line with the best smartphones and their cameras. Mi 8 excels at shooting photos, gaining high marks in 105 points. All thanks to accurate exposure and an extended dynamic range at different lighting levels. In the photo, the colors are saturated and vibrant with a neutral white balance in bright light, the artifacts are kept under control. Also happy with fast and accurate autofocus and realistic bokeh effect.

Of course, the camera is not perfect. A little more than enough detail of objects. Despite the fact that in most cases the bokeh effect looks realistic, in some cases, images with bokeh effects look unnatural.

The score for the video was 88, in this respect, the smartphone is not as good as when creating a photo. Among the advantages of fast, accurate and smooth autofocus with good tracking of objects, pleasant color rendition and wide dynamic range. And about everything in more detail.

Съемка при ярком свете Xiaomi Mi 8

Shooting outdoors or in the sun allows you to get impressive clear images with high detail. Exposure accuracy is also high when illuminated, images are mostly neutral, although sometimes colors tend to be more saturated. Compared to the Mi Mix 2S, there are small improvements in the dynamic range, Xiaomi Mi 8 has come very close to the best representatives of photographic flags. It captures a wide range of tonality with a high level of detail in the dark and in the light.

The level of digital noise is kept under control, especially in areas with a single color, such as the blue sky, as well as in problematic dark areas. In rare cases, noise reduction results in loss of detail. Also there is a slight shading in areas with the same color, like walls or background. You can pay attention to uneven edges at high contrast, sometimes you do not even need to enlarge the photo.

Слабое освещение и вспышка Xiaomi Mi 8

Xiaomi Mi 8 works well in low light, making it an excellent choice for taking pictures in rooms and other difficult environments. Exposure control is accurate and reliable, it is available at lighting levels up to 5 lux. Color rendition is about the same as in bright light, saturated colors and pleasant under any artificial light. The balance of the white is also, on the whole, true and pleasant to the eye. However, sometimes there is a transition to a yellow-green hue, especially if there are white walls in the background. At times there is a darkening of colors, in the center of the frame a green shade is seen, on the periphery is violet. All this can not be called significant flaws, but they are.

Autofocus still excellently shows itself: quickly and accurately copes with its tasks. Images are not blurred due to the correct ISO selection, exposure and reliable image stabilization. Due to this, we obtain clear photos with pleasant colors and good exposure.

Zoom and bokeh effect

The telephoto lens with a focal length equivalent to 56 mm on the auxiliary camera makes optical zoom affordable and supports the creation of a photo with a bokeh effect. The result is about the same as the Mi Mix 2S, which can be seen on trial photos. More details about this are written below.

Analysis of ratings for photos

In the "Photos" section Xiaomi Mi 8 scored 105 points and is among the best photo flagships. The evaluation consists of a set of tests that examine different aspects under different shooting conditions. Let's look at the results of these tests in more detail.

Exposure and contrast (92)

In this section, a high score was obtained due to accurate exposure when shooting in well-balanced conditions. Dynamic range is at the level of the best competitors, iPhone X or Pixel 2. Comparative photos see below.

Xiaomi Mi 8
Xiaomi Mi 8
Xiaomi Mi 8
Apple iPhone X
Xiaomi Mi 8
Google Pixel 2

Камера выдаёт более чем приемлемые результаты при слабом освещении, хотя фото слегка недодержанные при съёмке в студии с освещением 5 люкс. Xiaomi Mi 8

Color (86)

Xiaomi Mi 8 showed an excellent result in the "Color" section. White balance is most often neutral under different lighting conditions. Color rendition in the open air is rich and rich, the results are good and in low light. Colors have a natural and realistic looking bluish and greenish shade, as well as neutral white and green areas.

Xiaomi Mi 8
Xiaomi Mi 8
Xiaomi Mi 8
Apple iPhone X
Xiaomi Mi 8
Google Pixel 2

Autofocus (98)

Автофокус является одной из наиболее сильных сторон камеры этого смартфона. Результат XCHARX один из лучших среди современных смартфонов. В лаборатории между снимками выполнялась расфокусировка изображения и ожидание на протяжении короткого (500 мс) или длительного (2000 мс) промежутка времени до запроса фокуса. Смартфон стабильно и точно фокусировался при любых условиях освещения. Xiaomi Mi 8

Texture (70)

Outdoors in bright light Xiaomi Mi 8 shoots with excellent detail and texture, minimally giving way to the leaders. Only Huawei P20 noticeably better, the detailing of it increases the monochrome sensor. Xiaomi well resists the iPhone X in static scenes with lighting 20 suite and 1000 suite.

Xiaomi Mi 8
Shooting at 1000 luxury, photo size - 100%. From left to right - Xiaomi Mi 8, Huawei P20, Apple iPhone X
Xiaomi Mi 8
Shooting at 20 luxury, photo size - 100%. From left to right - Xiaomi Mi 8, Huawei P20, Apple iPhone X

Comparing with the previously released Mi Mix 2S, the new smartphone has received improved visualization of textures and image details, especially in low light. Higher ISO values ​​are used, resulting in reduced shutter speed and increased photo sharpness. If you look carefully at the images when lighting 20 suite, you can see a higher detail in comparison with Mi Mix 2S. Only when the camera shakes the detail falls a little.

Xiaomi Mi 8
Shooting at 1000 luxury, photo size - 100%. From left to right - Xiaomi Mi 8, Xiaomi Mi MIX 2S
Xiaomi Mi 8
Shooting at 20 luxury, photo size - 100%. From left to right - Xiaomi Mi 8, Xiaomi Mi MIX 2S

Noise (72)

The disadvantage of high ISO in low light is the increase in the level of digital noise compared to Mi Mix 2S. In general, the photos continue to look clean and with good quality.

Xiaomi Mi 8
Shooting at 20 luxury, photo size - 100%. From left to right - Xiaomi Mi 8, Xiaomi Mi MIX 2S

Despite the increase in noise, the smartphone received a fairly high rating. The noise level is low in the open air and remains relatively low even in demanding scenes with insufficient lighting. If compared with competitors like Huawei P20 and iPhone X, photos with Xiaomi Mi 8 look clean both with lighting level 100 lux and 20 suite.

Xiaomi Mi 8
Shooting at 100 luxury, photo size - 100%. From left to right - Xiaomi Mi 8, Huawei P20, Apple iPhone X
Xiaomi Mi 8
Shooting at 20 luxury, photo size - 100%. From left to right - Xiaomi Mi 8, Huawei P20, Apple iPhone X

Artifacts (72)

Control of artifacts is good, except that periodically a multicolored frame around the edges of objects is observed. Especially it is visible at high contrast in bright scenes, and that only at close examination of pictures. A little less often, such cases are more obvious.

Xiaomi Mi 8
Xiaomi Mi 8 - full frame
Xiaomi Mi 8
Xiaomi Mi 8 - 100%

Flash (85)

Mi8 received a good rating for the work of the flash thanks to accurate and constant exposure from frame to frame. For the LED flash, it has good intensity and excellent attenuation, as well as good control over the dimming of colors. The white balance is for the most part accurate, without additional light sources. Sometimes a slight yellowish tinge is noticeable when incandescent lamps are used. Light and chromatic noise is low in all photos with a flash due to good noise reduction, while maintaining a high level of detail.

Xiaomi Mi 8
Work flash without additional light source
Xiaomi Mi 8
Flash operation with an additional light source (incandescent bulb) 5 lux

Zoom (47)

A good estimate is obtained primarily due to a qualitative two-fold increase in the image in the open air and indoors under 100 lux lighting. With such lighting, the detail in the images is high. If you compare with Mi Mix 2S, the stability of autofocus is improved, it acts more smoothly. Digital noise is very low, but sometimes color noise is noticeable. Naturally, the zoom is not so good at 8-fold increase in the image, the clarity falls along with the detailing, but there is still a good compromise between noise and texture quality.

As can be seen from the examples, the level of detail resembles the iPhone X in bright lighting, but it significantly decreases in low light. At the 20 suite level, the results remain acceptable, but the loss of detail becomes apparent.

Xiaomi Mi 8
Shooting at 1000 Lux, 2x magnification. From left to right - Xiaomi Mi 8, Apple iPhone X
Xiaomi Mi 8
Shooting at 100 Lux, 2x magnification. From left to right - Xiaomi Mi 8, Apple iPhone X
Xiaomi Mi 8
Shooting at 10 Lux, 2x magnification. From left to right - Xiaomi Mi 8, Apple iPhone X

Bokeh Effect (50)

Высокая оценка получена и в данном разделе, фотографии выходят с эффективным и реалистичным боке. Наблюдается плавный переход от переднего к заднему плану. Оценка глубины изображения чаще всего точная, как и маскировка объектов. Некоторые небольшие ошибки и артефакты, обычно относятся к движущимся объектам, при ближайшем рассмотрении могут быть заметны. Xiaomi Mi 8 Xiaomi Mi 8

Video Score Evaluation

In the "Video" section, the device received 88 points, the only drawbacks are stabilization and noise in low light. 81 for 83 color, 96 autofocus, 51 textures, 71 noise, 70 artifacts and 83 stabilization are put for exposure.

The main advantage of video shooting is autofocus, which works quickly and accurately, keeping the subject well. This makes it possible not to lose sight of even moving objects. Also, the problems were fixed, when the frame changes during shooting. The exposure is usually accurate, like the white balance. The dynamic range is good, the detailing is high in the brightest and darkest areas with high contrast.

Also good colors in low light, they are more juicy compared to more expensive competitors, but the results do not seem unnatural. As with photos, the video has a good balance between detail and noise. However, the details are still inferior to competitors.


Perhaps, Xiaomi is not the best flagship smartphone, but Mi 8 offers a high-quality camera, which is little inferior to more famous and expensive competitors. It provides very fast and accurate autofocus, excellent exposure and detail for different lighting. There is a good dynamic range and a high-quality telephoto camera with an 2-fold image magnification, as well as a bokeh effect. The video also did not disappoint. As a result, buyers will get one of the best price-quality ratio when choosing a photo-flagship and a leading position in the rating of smartphones with a good camera. Recall that the price of Xiaomi Mi 8 at the start of sales will be $ 420 for the younger version.

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