Considering buying the Xiaomi Fimi X8 SE Drone? Want to know how it compares to other similar drones on the market or if it’s the best purchase for you? Here’s everything you need to know.
We work hard to make this the best travel photography and experience website possible. Shoot Experience is supported by our readers and if you make a purchase through a link on this site, we may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. We are proud of our editorial integrity and only recommend cameras, gear and accessories we find truly useful. We hope you find the information in this post helpful.
Jump Ahead to...
Xiaomi Fimi X8 SE Drone Review- should you buy one?
If you’re looking for a good drone for beginners and don’t want to spend a ridiculous amount on a DJI Mavic, there’s a good chance you’ve come across the Fimi X8 SE.
Like all drones (and cameras, and gear), not everything is right for everyone when it comes to travel photography equipment. It’s important to do your research- and that’s what we’re here for!
By the time you finish our review of the Xiaomi Fimi X8 SE, you’ll know everything you need to know about this drone and its competitors, and you’ll be ready to decide if this is the best drone for you.
Who is the Xiaomi Fimi X8 SE Drone for?
Fimi is well-known for producing a wide range of drones, from cheap and accessible products designed for beginners all the way to the most heavy-duty industrial-grade drones for experts.
The X8 SE drone falls somewhere in the middle of that spectrum. While it’s definitely geared towards beginners, this Xiaomi Fimi drone packs a bit of a punch that might appeal to intermediate drone pilots looking for a cheaper option.
One of the biggest problems with looking for a new drone is trying to compare all the selling points, and deciding what’s best and right for YOU. So, to help you cut through the noise, here are the 4 biggest selling points of the Fimi X8 SE that you have to know about if you’re thinking of buying this drone.
Fimi X8 SE Drone Important Feature #1: 4K Camera
Let’s face it, whether you’re a travel photographer or videographer looking to get amazing footage, or you just want to buy a drone to fly in a remote corner of the local park, the feature everyone cares about most is the camera.
The entire POINT of a drone is to take amazing photos and videos from what is essentially a flying remote-controlled camera. Since that’s the case, why settle for any drone that doesn’t have the absolute best camera out there? Luckily, the Xiaomi Fimi X8 SE drone does have one of the best cameras out there.
The drone comes with a 4K camera attached, allowing you to take photos and videos that will blow the minds of all your friends and family (and, let’s face it, anyone who follows you on social media.)
Fimi X8 SE Drone Important Feature #2: 5km range of control
Another reason for buying a drone for most people, especially travelers, is the ability to explore places you might not be able to otherwise get to.
The Fimi X8 SE has a solid range of 5 kilometers, so you’ll be able to really explore the area and find amazing landscapes you didn’t even know existed. Like most drones, you need line of sight, but that extra range can make a huge difference to the photos and videos you’re able to capture with your drone.
Important Feature #3: Extra-Strength Battery
It might surprise you to know that many of the drones on the market are a little lacking in the battery department. The technology is still pretty new and keeping something in the air for a long time is full of challenges. Even some of the better drones on the market have a battery life of just 5-10 minutes. If you’re a complete beginner to drones, trust me when I say that’s really NOT long enough to get any decent photos.
But Fimi have really separated themselves from the pack with the X8 SE, which has an incredible battery life- up to 30 minutes! Of course, the exact length of time will depend on wind speed, temperature, height and all the other small factors, but with a Fimi drone you’re already starting at an advantage.
Important Feature #4: Intuitive Controls
The Fimi X8 SE has been praised for having one of the most intuitive control schemes out there. This is obviously very appealing for beginners, and it might be just as appealing to more intermediate pilots. Who wants things to be harder for no reason?
The Fimi drone controller has clearly labeled buttons for take-off, landing, and taking photos and videos. There’s even a dial that lets you control the axis, so expert pilots can take the training wheels off and get the best travel shots of an area. Plus, the controller comes with a dock for your smartphone which will give you access to all of the amazing features standard in most drones such as FPV and certain flight-control features.
With the Fimi X8 SE, there’s no need to waste time learning a clunky control scheme- you can jump right into the fun with this intuitive and easy-to-fly drone. And yes, compared to some more expensive makes, it really is easy to fly, even for complete drone pilot beginners.
The Pros and Cons
As with anything, the Fimi X8SE isn’t perfect. We always try to be unbiased, so here are the pros and cons to help you make a decision and decide if it’s the best drone for you. We’ve added this pros and cons section to neatly break everything down. Here is a quick summary of our entry-level Fimi drone.
- High-quality 4k camera
- Incredible battery life
- Easy-to-use controller
- No crash avoidance feature
- Over the license-free weight limit
How Does It Compare to other drones?
Nothing exists in a vacuum, and even if you’ve pretty much formed your opinion on the Fimi x8 SE Drone, it’s important to look at the other top products on the market. In this upcoming section, we’re going to quickly compare Fimi x8 SE Drone to some of the other popular drones on the market so that you can see what else is out there before making your purchase.
Fimi X8 SE Drone vs DJI Spark– which is better?
DJI is just about the biggest drone manufacturer out there, so it wouldn’t really be a fair gauge of the competition if we left them off this section of our review. Both the X8 SE and the Spark are smaller drones, designed for beginner drone users.
PORTABILITY & WEIGHT
As far as portability goes, there’s no meaningful difference, but the Spark is 4 centimeters shorter. However, the Sparks arms don’t fold in, which could make it a little more awkward to travel with even if its frame is smaller. As for weight, the Fimi X8 SE weighs about 750 grams while the DJI Spark weighs only 450, so DJI is the clear winner there.
SPEED & CAMERA
The horizontal and vertical speed of the X8 is superior to the DJI Spark drone, and it has a better transmission speed, so you don’t need to worry about any lag on your inputs or video stream. The camera of the X8 is also superior to that of its DJI adversary, which shouldn’t be too surprising considering that’s one of the big selling points of this drone.
MAX ALTITUDE & VERDICT
The big check in the win column is that the DJI has a much higher maximum altitude at 4 kilometers compared to the 500 meters of the Fimi drone. And of course, the DJI product is cheaper.
If you want the cheaper product and you want to soar as high as possible, then you need to go with the DJI Spark. But if you want the best camera, the smoothest experience, and the best battery, then you’ll have to give your hard-earned cash to Xiaomi.
Fimi X8 SE vs Hubsan Zino 2
Both of these drones feature a dazzling 4K camera, and they also both have a 3-axis gimbal that offers amazing flight stability, so you won’t have any shaky videos or blurry pictures.
The Zino 2 ALSO has accomplished the unusual feat of being one of the only drones to have the same 30+ minute battery life as the X8.
These two drones are neck-and-neck in every performance metric, but Fimi pulls away in the big tiebreaker – price. Considering these two drones are close to identical, price is really the only factor that should influence your decision. Since the Fimi is cheaper, that’s where your money should go.
What Do the Reviews Say about the Fimi X8 SE?
Whilst we always try to be objective, we have our own thoughts, biases and opinions, so here are some opinions from other quality reviewers out there who used this Fimi drone. Luckily, there seems to be a common consensus out there about the pros and cons of this drone.
Staaker praised this drone for its intuitive control scheme and its abundance of safety features, though they did point out that the X8 SE is missing a collision avoidance feature. However, they also gave the caveat that this shouldn’t be too much of a problem if you keep your drone within eyesight.
The Drones Gator website remarked on the Xiaomi Fimi X8 SE’s battery life and its very solid price, though they were a little upset it doesn’t stay under the weight license-free weight limit. They also praised the drone for its stable, 3-axis gimbal and its great flight range.
Of course, the opinion that matters the most is that of the paying customers. Reviewers on Amazon pointed out the fantastic value of the Xiaomi Fimi X8 SE and mentioned that it’s a fantastic beginner option. The customers and the paid reviewers have made it pretty clear that this Fimi drone is a product worth considering.
Do You Need a License for the Xiaomi Fimi X8 SE
Unfortunately, yes. In most countries with drone laws, including the United States and United Kingdon, you need a permit to fly any drone heavier than 250 grams. With its weight of 750 grams, the Fimi drone is very much over that limit.
The bright side is that it’s really not that hard to get a permit. All you need to do is fill out some simple forms and pass an easy online exam. Once you have the permit, it’s valid for two years, so it’s definitely worth the hassle to be able to fly bigger drones unbothered for two full years. Of course, if you don’t like to deal with bureaucracy, there are plenty of drones out there that stay under the mandated weight limit.
There are other conditions you need to abide by, and they can change depending on which country you’re traveling in/ to. Be sure to do your research to make sure you stay legal with your drone.
Verdict: Is the Fimi X8 SE the best drone for the money?
All of the pros, cons, and comparisons we’ve laid out for you really boil down to one question: Is this drone the best option for you in its price range?
With its incredible battery life, great range, compact build, and fantastic camera, this Xiaomi product boasts plenty of great features that separate it from the pack, and it even has a reasonable price.
If you’re a complete beginner, you’ll love the simple controller and the easy flying ability.
More experienced drone users will love the gimbal that helps you show off and pull off some tricks.
Of course, there are plenty of other solid options out there. Most notably, if you want something a little cheaper that still offers a fantastic experience, the DJI Spark is a great option.
If the weight limit bothers you and you really don’t want to get a permit or licence, a micro-drone might be better for you. A nice side-benefit of these tiny drones is that they’re incredibly cheap. There are also earlier iterations of this Fimi product that are a little weaker on features but also cheaper.
We’ve laid out all of the crucial information about the Fimi X8 SE drone and its competitors, and now the final choice is up to you.
I’d love to hear what you choose- let me know in the comments below.