Xiaomi Yi action cam

Many people have the Xiaomi Yi and because it provides a nice image quality and is fairly cheap I have thought of getting 1 or 2 for alternative angles. But I would like to learn.

In the action cam thread @StephaneP writes some pros and cons in Thoughts or experiences with action cameras - most noteably that auto exposure is locked at the first image when doing 1s or 0.5s time lapse. He also links to his sequence: http://www.mapillary.com/map/im/cD0nfFzKixMdILQWEZmVHw/photo

The camera does not have GPS, so @maxim75 writes about his workflow at Thoughts or experiences with action cameras

Both @ian and @StephaneP write about some scripts or custom code - any good sources, tutorials or guides?


http://nutseynuts.blogspot.dk/ looks like a great resource for scripts and tricks.

As the Auto-Exposure is locked, I use this script :

sleep 10
#convert sleep to milliseconds hack
#writew 0xC0155712 0x0000
while true
t app key shutter
sleep 1

Copy these lines in a file named autoexec.ash and put it on the root of the µSD card
You have to finish the script with an empy line.

I tend to not use 16 megapixel pictures as the Yi take more time to store it. With 8MP it’s faster.
Workflow :

  • Put the script on the µSD card.
  • Set the Yi to start in standard photo mode
  • Set picture quality to 8/12/16 MP
  • I usually enable “lens correction”
  • Reboot the Yi and it will start to take pictures in loop.

If you’re a Yi owner please send emails to Xiaomi to ask for auto-exposure with 0.5s and 1s Timelapse, and support for SubSecTime in exif tag.

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By the way :
If you want 16MP pictures, you’d better use the 2s Timelapse as it’s faster than the loop script.

And… I received an answer from Xiaomi. My requests are sent to the developpers… I cross my fingers…


I think I’ll order one. Then when I get the time I can look at the sub second problem.

Does anybody know how to get it in Europe? Both Amazon co.uk and .de dispatch them directly from Europe, but does not want to dispatch it to Denmark :frowning:

I can get it from Asia, but then VAT and fees will make the price at almost the level of a GoPro Entry with danish warranty.

Xiaomi has a german shop, but it just links to an international shop with high shipping rates and the same VAT + fee.

banggood.com and gearbest.com are 2 well know places to buy the Yi. Both can ship from china or europe.

I purchased mine at http://www.geekbuying.com/item/342272.html for ~$85 shipped to the US. It came fairly quickly (about a week) and is a genuine camera.

I’m interested in trying to use the built-in bluetooth to connect to a bluetooth GPS receiver and have it geolocate photos as they’re taken. I haven’t had time to try this, though :smile:.

Thanks - I have placed an order of 2 at banggood.com. Looking forward to getting them…

Have mad my 2 cameras for about a week. Today I tried to fix the “focus problem” some people talk about - the camera is optimally focused for selfies. Fixing it only made it worse for me.

This image is when I set the lens back to default. The image is taken through a double layer window - the LEDs are from the disasembled camera.

What I am trying to say is: Take a test shot and, try to see where the camera is focused and see if you want to move that optimally focused point at all. I will not touch my 2nd camera.

price a little bit higher. I bought xiaomi yi action camera at 1030AM around $79

Somebody tried this? It should be cheaper with a xiaomi than a gopro

Looks neat. Now if there only was a method to couple all six cams, that means:

  • start/stop all of them more or less at once.
  • take pictures at the exact same time, aka synchronizing (important for 360° stitching)
  • supply power to them. (probably already possible using usb)

With the gopro you can control multiple cameras with the same remote control. Can you do the same with the xiaomi? Further you can program the xiaomi with an autoexec.ash script, maybe there are some possibilities there. But since someone makes the mount it probably is possible to make 360 video with it.
Can you charge the xiaomi with usb will using it?

@enteq there might be. Your point 1 and 2 are more or less the same. An untested suggestion:

Many people uses a shell script hack to take pictures with the Xiaomi Yi (see other threads). It basically reads:

while true
sleep 1 second
take picture

What you should do is:

  1. Synchronize the cameras time with the app and do it often. Then all cameras are synchronized with the same time souce. Their clocks should be fairly accurate over a short time.
  2. Instead of sleeping for 1 second, calculate the number of milliseconds to the next second and sleep for that period of time. The sleep command can be used with decimals, e.g. “sleep 0.23”

To get the timing most accurate, the best would probably be to write a program in c that both the loop, calculations and taking the picture. It should be possible for the people who have reverse engineered a lot of the firmware.

It’s not possible to sync two Yi with a simple loop script. It doesn’t work.
I want to try to activate the shutter buton simultaneously on both yi with an external thing (Arduino, something else…)

The 6 cam mount could be used for 360° video as it’ easier to sync (with a clap, a beep…)

I found some links:


And a 6 camerarig for halve the price of the one I previously linked to