I have seen a lot of comparisons in the GoPro vs Yi 4K action camera category. The reason why is obvious: the Yi 4K competes with the (current) top of the line GoPro for about half the price. But this isn’t going to be a comparison article: instead it’s an actual review of how the Yi 4K works and what it’s like to use.
If you’re looking for a budget-friendly 4K action cam then the Yi 4K is hard to pass by. The image quality plus the cheap price tag are what grabbed my attention in the first place — and I’m sure plenty of other people as well. So let’s start things off by talking about that video quality.
I’m only going to be writing about the 4K image quality in this review because, personally, I could care less about 1080p or other lesser resolutions. And the 4K quality of this camera is really good — for an action camera. I had to throw that disclaimer in there because, while this camera performs admirably vs other action cams, it is no match for, say, a micro 4/3 system that shoots 4K. In comparison, I think the Yi 4K footage tends to be more grainy at times and things like white clouds tend to get blown out more.
And then there’s that wide angle lends distortion. It’s an action camera, so it makes sense, but I wish that there was an option to turn it off or correct it in-cam rather than having to do that in post.
I really love the 4K time lapses this camera can shoot though. They’re pretty stunning. And it’s very easy to change the interval at which snaps occur. This is one thing I’d buy this camera for all on it’s own.
Now on the stabilization front, there’s some disappointment in the 4K department because, well, there is no stabilization for 4K footage. There is, however, for 1080p shots, but that does no good for someone with a 4K workflow like myself.
Even so, shots with the selfie stick do look pretty decent in 4K mode even without that stabilization. After doing some testing I think you can definitely come out with some footage that is completely usable — especially if you learn how to hold and position everything / how to walk with it.
But the selfie stick has a couple of issues. ...