Why The Mi4i Should Be Your Go To Camera Phone

mi4i review

Hello there! This is the poor photographer, this is going to be my first blog post here so I thought I should start by introducing myself and say hello. So…hello! Why Poor Photographer? Well because, compared to the arsenal of photographers I am in the lowest class using only an outdated Canon 1000D and camera phones for review, one of which will be the topic for today’s review. Further, my only investment in photography is my passion and my desire to share to everyone that sometimes passion is all you need, the rest will follow. So far I am getting “ok” photos using my DSLR and the camera phones. One of the Camera Phones that was given to me for review is the Xiaomi Mi4i and for several months it has been my Go-to camera whenever I want to take photos of things, places or what have you which my DSLR can’t take photos of, I forgot to say my DSLR comes only with a 70mm-250mm lens so I can only get some pretty tight shots.


I am only going to give my review pertaining to the camera of the smartphones, I will not dive into stuff like Wifi connectivity, Bluetooth or any other properties of the smartphone that does not have anything with photography or the camera functionality of the device.

Shall we start?

Okay so now I have gotten the introductions out of the way, hello there again, and welcome to my first blog post and review of the Xiaomi Mi4i. The Xiaomi Mi4i is one of the products released by Xiaomi as announced April of last year (2015). Photography-wise the Xiaomi Mi4i surprised everyone because of its crisp and clear photo output. When I first saw the Xiaomi Mi4i in action I was really amazed at what it can do.

Xiaomi Mi4i Camera

Unedited Macro Shot Using the Xiaomi Mi4i

One of the many reasons why the Xiaomi Mi4i has the best photo output is because of the 13 megapixels Sony/Samsung f2.0 camera built into the phone. The only thing that baffles me is how do I know if I got the Sony or the Samsung camera on my phone? There must be some kind of difference between a Sony and a Samsung camera even if they do have the same capability? One must be superior to the other isn’t it? Especially so that the former have been developing camera lenses longer than the former. Anyway, that is a question we leave to the folks at Xiaomi.

What is important to know is that the Mi4i have the capability of capturing 13 megapixels images (it is bigger than my DSLR which is only capable of up to 12megapixels). The front camera, on the other hand, is a 5-megapixel lens which gives you a decent selfie photo.

The Mi4i Flash

Another nice feature of the Xiaomi Mi4i is its two-tone flash. The two-tone flash calculates the color of the environment and balances it out with its warm light or its cold light to make the photo look natural. This gives us the natural color look even if the environment color is heavy on the warm or cold lights.

The Different Camera Modes

Mi4i Camera Modes
Xiaomi Mi4i Camera Modes


If there is one thing I could say about the Xiaomi Mi4i photography capability, that is, it is not your average point-and-shoot camera. It has more capabilities than a point-and-shoot camera. For one, you are able to capture HDR photos, these high-resolution photos are best for taking landscape or scenery shots. The other modes are beauty, for that ultimate selfie photo. The mode which I am most excited about is its manual mode. Yes, a camera phone with a manual function similar to that of your DSLR camera.

The Manual Mode

The Manual Mode

As I have said, the manual mode is the one which I am most excited about, because now I can take the most type of photos with a camera phone. Long exposure shots are now possible with the manual mode, although you can also do it on the HDR Pro mode. Streaking lights, fireworks, and light painting are just some of the creative shots which you can do with Xiaomi Mi4i’s manual mode. It’s manual focus also allows you to take macro photos, you just need to have a tripod or really steady hands in order to take a great macro shot. The possibilities are endless when you have full control of your camera’s capability and this is one of the things that makes Xiaomi Mi4i stand out from the rest.

Fireworks shot with Xiaomi Mi4i Manual Mode

Impression on the Xiaomi Mi4i

The Upside of using Xiaomi Mi4i

  1. High-resolution photos with 13 megapixels back camera and 5 megapixels front camera.
  2. Two-tone flash that allows for the capture of photos in natural colors.
  3. A manual mode that allows for better control of your camera and output.
  4. Better quality photos with HDR Mode
  5. Faster processing with the snapdragon 64-bit octa-core processor

The Downside of using Xiaomi Mi4i

  1. Non-expandable storage, although with a decent 16GB/32GB eMMC Flash

Overall Impression for the Xiaomi Mi4i

Overall the Xiaomi Mi4i is an awesome camera phone, you only have to worry about storage but hey, you can always add Google Photos for your cloud storage. This is the reason why even with the storage limitation I am still going to use the Xiaomi Mi4i in my travels and photography sessions, if there is one thing for me to add here is that I need to but a suitable clip lens to extend the capabilities of its already awesome camera lens.

Buy the Xiaomi Mi4i




The Poor Photographer did not study professional photography, he only uses an outdated Canon 1000D with only one lens his trusty 70-250mm. He uses his camera phones Xiaomi Mi4i, Samsung Note 3 and Kata i3L (all of which were just given for review) for taking photos. Even if he is ill-equipped for photography he has the passion for it and will continue to share his experiences here.

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