When you’re a Xiaomi lover and you’re looking for a drone: Xiaomi came with their phantom alternatives. Later on these drones came out under the brand: Fimi. Fimi is a partner company of Xiaomi (or is it a daughter company?). However, the camera of these drones are great. And now the good news: Fimi came with a handheld gimbal camera. A pocket 4k camera on a gimbal with a touchscreen. Is this a good alternative for my actioncam or Marsoar gimbal? Let’s find out.
Battery Capacity: 1000mAh
Battery Life: 240mins (1080P/30fps video recording time)
Lens: 128° super wide angle
Video Shooting: 4K/30fps
Max. Resolution: 4K 100Mbps
Control Accuracy: ±0.02°
Controllable Range: -240°~ 60°(Panning) / ±90°(Tilting) / ±45°(Rolling)
Model Number: YTXJ03FM
FPV Equipments: Gimbal
Gimbal Type: 3 Axis
We reviewed the Fimi drone (Fimi Drone X8 Se). The camera of the drone looks the same, so I think this can be a game changer and replace my action cam.
Product weight: 0.1200 kg
Package weight: 0.2000 kg
Product size (L x W x H): 3.05 x 2.27 x 12.70 cm / 1.2 x 0.89 x 5 inches
Package size (L x W x H): 4.00 x 4.00 x 15.00 cm / 1.57 x 1.57 x 5.91 inches
What’s in the box?
- 1 x Gimbal Camera Stabilizer (Fimi Palm YTXJ03FM),
- 1 x USB-C Cable,
- 1 x English Manual ,
- 1 x Gimbal Cover
Everytime when I receive a new gadget I turn it on as fast as possible. But this time I got disappointed. The battery was completely empty so it didn’t turn on or gave a sign of live. So I had to charge it first. Bummer! I used the USB-C cable that charges my Notebook with 65w, but for the Fimi Palm this didn’t work. So I charged it with my phone charger and that worked fine!
Before you can record you have to put in a SD-card. Filming in 4k requires a fast micro-sd card with the maximum capacity of 256gb.
My next step, I turned the Fimi palm on to check the features. But this time I got an error: Error format SD-card. I had several SD-cards and formatted them on my pc. But this also didn’t work. What was wrong? I only can choose between two languages (Chinese or English) and no other menu options. Hmm Panic, again what was wrong? On the Fimi website I downloaded new firmware versions and I saw several downloads in a short period. So many updates, i wonder if that’s a good or a bad thing at the same time! Bad that it is needed, good that Fimi improves their firmware.
I copied the firmware files to my SD-card and booted my Fimi. Where my Palm first said that there was no SD-card, this time it installed the firmware. After the installation I chose the laguage English again, and this time no errors and I could enter setting menus.
You can find the most recent Fimi firmware version at https://www.fimi.com/support/download/view?id=22 and youtube videos are included.
So It was time to check the options, features and set the settings. However the menus are fine, adjusting settings from a phone is easier.
The camera had an integrated 5ghz wi-fi network to communicate with your phone. This is quite easy to setup.
- Download the Fimi Palm app that is named: Fimi Play
- Fimi Palm app for android: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.fimi.host.palm&hl=en
- Fimi Play app for IOS: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/fimi-play/id1491125393
- Enable Wifi on the Fimi Palm
- Enter the app, connect to the wifi of you Fimi Palm (password is default: 123456789
Status LED light on the front of the Fimi Palm is green flashing when recording, it gives a solid red light as a low battery warning and flashing red when in error. While in firmware flash, the light is red and green blinking.
- always get yourself an up-to-date firmware!
- learn the buttons shortcuts and menu before you go on holiday 🙂 Double click = recenter the gimbal’s head, pressing the button 3 times the camera turns 180° into the selfie mode.
- slow-motion (4 and 8x)
- panorama (1×4, 4×1 or 3×3)
- 4 gimbal modes:
- Pitch Lock
- Gimbal lock
Build Quality & Design
The Fimi comes in a black glossy skin and has a rubber base. It feels solid and lightweighted. I’m a little disappointed about the gimbal’s cover. It looks cheap and could be designed better.
Portability / Mobility
The gimbal is extremely portable and therefor easy to carry on in you jacket of bag. It weighs about 120 grams and the dimensions are 132×30,6×22,8 mm. As extra protection for the more expensive gadgets I use an extra case. This way it’s easy to carry and you have all the extra accessories in one place. I really recommend you you check the list of extra goodies here.
The Fimi Palm has an 12MP Sony sensor that is capable of recording in 4k :). The photos are saved in jpeg or can be saved in raw format. Videos are recorded in 4K at 30fps / 25fps or 1080p at 60 / 50fps in the NTSC/PAL standard. Codecs that can be chosen are: H264 and H265. I prefer h265 because of the better compression (less disk space).
The camera is quite good but has no flashlights for photo’s in the dark, remember that.
Usability, does it replace my action cam?
A Palm gimbal camera isn’t an action cam. However it would be often compared to it. It has a better gimbal and therefor smoother videos, but an action cam has tons of accessories that are build for extreme situations. An action cam can be mounted on car’s, bikes, goes under water, but filming a vlog of walking on your holidays is easier with a palm gimbal. Choose what’s the best for your needs!
Home automation compatible?
The camera can be put in a base, has face detection, and has a connection with an mobile app. It would be great if it can be used as a webcam or even a security cam. I think this could be technically possible, but for now I haven’t seen scripts, hacks or downloads to accomplish this.
The Fimi Palm Gimbal includes only 1 USB Cable, but no base, strap/cord or a external microphone. I can understand why they don’t include an experternal microphone (because of the price tag that comes with it), but including a cheap keycord is the least thing they could offer. Lucky for you I found some interesting and affordable extensions you have to buy:
- Phone Mounting Bracket Holder for FIMI PALM
- Phone Mounting Bracket Holder for FIMI PALM
- straps mounts and protection
Fimi Palm Pocket Case Portable Storage Bag Buckle Box Protective Cover Case with Sling Strap Lanyard
Alternatives for the Fimi
Two alternative kind of products come into my mind. An action cam, with lot of accessories for extreme sports and under water, or a gimbal for your telephone. All three products are different and have there own strenght and advantages.
A real comparison would be with the DJI Ozmo. Compared with the DJI, the FIMI Palm Gimbal offers a bigger screen, wider field of view, bigger battery and built-in Wi-fi all for less money!
Where to buy?
FIMI PALM 3-Axis 4K HD Handheld Gimbal Camera 135
- Think about buying cheap accessories like the base and external mic!
- Before using this cam please update the Fimi Palm firmware with the latest from the fimi website.
The specs are great for this price, but the software can be improved. A great thing is that Fimi works continues on their software and listen to their users. Fimi gives you value for your money, but in my opinion they can higher the price and include cheap accessoires.
In 3 seconds you are fully ready to go, to record in 4k using h.265 codec. The menu is simple and the record modes are fine.
- Battery life of 240min
- Good price
- wide angle of 128°
- Internal WIFI
- h.265 codec for less storage
- 4k not in 60fps but in 30.
- No base of strap included
- A cheap looking lens cover
- Charging on a 65w laptop usb3-c charger doesnt work