Trusted Reviews is supported by its audience. If you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

Xiaomi Mi4 Review - Camera Review

Xiaomi Mi4: Camera

Xiaomi has always been very open about where it sources its parts, and even lists the Mi4’s camera as the Sony’s Exmor IMX214 on specification sheets. It’s a 13 megapixel variant that’s supported by an LED flash for low-light shooting.

Xiaomi Mi4 3Shelf with assorted board game boxes and book spines.
This shot contains good detail but it’s not quite as sharp towards the edges, showing some noticeable noise that lets the Mi4 down a little in low-light shots.

Like so many mobile phone cameras, it only really shines when taking shots in well-lit environments. Indoor photography is plagued by the usual problems such as washed-out colour, fuzzy detail and an aggressive flash which over-saturates images with light.

Camera interface with options over a blurred photo of LEGO blocks.

The Mi4’s custom camera software comes with a range of features, including HDR, burst shooting and panoramic capabilities. It also allows you to lock the focus of the sensor by dragging a box over an object.

This feature works well in practice and is handy when you’re taking close-up images of fidgeting offspring, but it’s less successful when dealing with fast-moving targets.

Xiaomi Mi4 1Close-up photo of vibrant pink flowers taken with a camera.
The Mi4 captures excellent detail in this shot (Full-res shots available in the gallery)

If you’d rather go for something a little similar you can switch the default camera application to Google’s own, which is available for download on the Google Play market. While this is lacking in features when compared to the Mi4’s native software, it’s somewhat easier to use and might be preferable for those who want to simply “fire and forget” when it comes to photography.

Being able to swop out core apps for your own choices is one of the most appealing aspects of Xiaomi’s MiUI software.

Xiaomi Mi4Photo sample from camera showing a tree against a blue sky.
This shot shows some problems. It struggles with the exposure of the clouds and there’s a slightly odd, magenta hue to some clouds.

Overall, while it falls short of the iPhone it imitates and other top-end phones, this is a very good camera for the price. The fact it shoots 4K video is a nice though probably unnecessary bonus, but the 8-megapixel front-facing camera is a very handy addition. Anyone who takes seflies often, or video calls, will appreciate the extra detail it captures.

We test every mobile phone we review thoroughly. We use industry standard tests to compare features properly and we use the phone as our main device over the review period. We’ll always tell you what we find and we never, ever, accept money to review a product.

Find out more about how we test in our ethics policy.

Used as our main phone for the review period

Reviewed using respected industry benchmarks and real world testing

Always has a SIM card installed

Tested with phone calls, games and popular apps

Why trust our journalism?

Founded in 2003, Trusted Reviews exists to give our readers thorough, unbiased and independent advice on what to buy.

Today, we have millions of users a month from around the world, and assess more than 1,000 products a year.

author icon

Editorial independence

Editorial independence means being able to give an unbiased verdict about a product or company, with the avoidance of conflicts of interest. To ensure this is possible, every member of the editorial staff follows a clear code of conduct.

author icon

Professional conduct

We also expect our journalists to follow clear ethical standards in their work. Our staff members must strive for honesty and accuracy in everything they do. We follow the IPSO Editors’ code of practice to underpin these standards.

Trusted Reviews Logo

Sign up to our newsletter

Get the best of Trusted Reviews delivered right to your inbox.

This is a test error message with some extra words