Xiaomi Mi A1 • Camera Disadvantage
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Optical image stabilization electronic board

The Xiaomi Mi A1 lacks an Optical Image Stabilization system for both of its dual cameras. I've searched the official mi.com website and found no evidence of an existing OIS feature. Although in some smartphone cameras like the Google Pixel with its large 1.55-micron pixels not having OIS isn't a big deal, in the Mi A1 it is and let me tell you why.

The main reasons an Optical Image Stabilization is used is not just to make your images and videos look sharp but also to improve the low light performance of the camera. Now, the Xiaomi Mi A1 comes with rear dual cameras. If you look at the Mi A1 camera specs, you can see that neither of the lenses are really fast. The wide-angle lens has an f/2.2 aperture in front of a 1.25-micron sensor and the telephoto lens is a slower f/2.6 lens in front of a 1.0-micron pixel size sensor.

These specs poses strong limitations on its low light capabilities. Slow aperture lens and small pixel size means less light that can be gathered to produce the final image. Now, if there was an OIS system, it could have vastly improve the low light performance, because the camera could shoot at slower shutter speeds, allow more light to pass through and therefore produce images with better exposure. Without it, the only other option for the camera to produce a well-exposed low light picture is to increase the ISO sensitivity. However, bumping up the ISO will also increase image noise and will cause a reduction in the dynamic range, reducing the overall quality of your pictures.

This becomes even more important for the second telephoto lens because it has an even slower f2.6 lens and smaller sensor pixels (1.0-micron). Furthermore, this is a telephoto lens with 50mm equivalent focal length, so any hand movement while taking a picture or recording videos will have more negative implications and the result might be a blurred image and shaky video.

Overall, it's disappointing to see that the Xiaomi Mi A1 lacks this OIS feature, especially considering its unimpressive camera specs. I want to hear what you guys think, is it that bad or you wouldn't mind either way?

importance ranking: #5 in the 'Camera' category and #15 among all categories for Xiaomi Mi A1 device

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