December 22, 2023

Exploring Skydio X10: A Comprehensive Look at Image Quality

joe enke skydio

Joe Enke

Skydio X10

Imatest, renowned for image quality testing, conducted a thorough examination of Skydio X10’s cameras, focusing on critical aspects like sharpness, color accuracy, signal-to-noise ratio, and dynamic range. This evaluation is your gateway to understanding the objective capabilities of the X10 drone. Join us as we explore a summary of the data, shedding light on the practical implications and real-world performance of Skydio X10's imaging technology.

Imatest reviewed X10 in comparison with competitors, presenting results that offer a detailed perspective on the camera's strengths. Let's look at the results and translate technical insights into tangible advantages for your imaging needs.


Imatest employed a modulation transfer function (MTF) test to measure sharpness, a crucial metric reflecting a camera system's ability to reproduce the original frequencies in an image. Sharpness directly influences the amount of detail a camera can capture, correlating with effective resolution. Skydio X10 excelled in daylight conditions, outperforming all competitor systems across scenarios. This metric is paramount, defining the level of detail visible in a photo or video, from capturing a 0.1mm crack in a wall to reading a license plate at large standoff distances.

Skydio X10 sharpness

Color Accuracy

Imatest measured color accuracy using delta E (DE), which represents the difference between two colors - the one captured on the camera and the one on the known value of the target. Lower DE scores indicate superior color accuracy. X10 scored well in color accuracy, particularly in daylight conditions, surpassing competitors across all scenarios. Color accuracy is further enhanced by Skydio's commitment to tuning for natural, true-to-life color. This approach proves critical for applications like inspection and photogrammetry, where Autel and DJI camera systems face challenges reproducing realistic and consistent colors in certain conditions.

color accuracy Skydio X10

Color accuracy Skydio X10

Signal to Noise

Signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) is a critical measure of the quality and clarity of an image. Skydio aims for a balanced tuning that delivers optimal performance while maintaining overall image quality. X10 performs exceptionally well in quarter resolution (binned) modes, effectively minimizing noise. Unlike some systems with unnatural smoothing effects and color aberrations, Skydio X10 strikes a balance, retaining the details you need without introducing artifacts, especially in challenging low and mixed lighting conditions.

Signal to noise Skydio X10

Dynamic Range

Dynamic range, measured in decibels (dB), evaluates a camera's ability to capture and reproduce details in both bright and dark areas of an image. X10's HDR modes shine in scenes with a broad range of mixed lighting, extracting details from shadows while preserving details in the highlights. Skydio X10’s narrow camera in HDR mode, although not triggering the Imatest test scene, is expected to deliver results similar to the tele camera, which scored excellently and much higher than competitor systems.

Skydio X10 HDR
HDR Mode On
Skydio HDR mode drone

In summary, the Skydio X10 emerges as the best overall performer, delivering a well-balanced image quality across various parameters. These results, coupled with real-world scenarios, highlight X10's prowess in capturing detailed, accurate, and noise-free images. For a comprehensive understanding, explore the detailed Imatest Drone Comparison Report.

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