So Apple has just launched its new iPhone 13 range, the iPhone 13, 13 Mini, 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max.
Below I am sharing my views on these new iPhones with a particular slant towards the photography and videography aspects.
Firstly, I will just mention the standard iPhone 13 and 13 Mini. If you have the 12 or 12 Mini, there is no reason IMO to look at upgrading to these. Yes these have brighter screens, better claimed battery life, better camera hardware including improved processing, ISP, processor and camera features. In fact the main rear wide sensor on these models looks like it was the sensor used on the iPhone 12 Pro Max with its advanced sensor shift stabilisation. With the new A15 processor and smart HDR4, this rear sensor will take excellent photos. The ultra wide camera has also been marginally improved. So what you will have is an easy to use competent camera which will create lovely video or photos for social media. But as I have said, I don’t believe these changes are enough to warrant an upgrade from last year’s versions.
However, the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max are a different proposition. Firstly, unlike last year, both the Pro and Pro Max have the identical camera modules. All 3 rear cameras are improved even further than the standard iPhone 13 models. The ultra wide now has auto focus enabling macro photography. Astrophotography is now possible too. All 3 rear lenses allow night mode. The zoom lens is now 3 x optical zoom. ProRAW on photos is still present. But coming soon ProRes video will be on board. For videography this is an incredible feat. One thing to bear in mind, the 128gb iPhone 13 Pro won’t allow 4K Pro Res, just 1080p. You can still shoot 4K in the other modes though. Apple is only allowing ProRes at 4K on the 256gb, 512gb and 1TB storage options. In case you think this is Apple forcing you to buy a higher storage version, its not as a 10 min 4K ProRes video will take up approximately 100gb.
The Pro and Pro Max also have an extra “core” in the A15 processor to enable more capabilities and I would imagine during a teardown the RAM is higher than the standard iPhone 13 as well. So whilst you will be able to film such high quality video, what makes it even more incredible, is that you will be able to edit this on the iPhone as well.
I just want to go back to the camera upgrades. Specifically the light gathering improvements. The wide camera can now gather 2.2x more light. The ultra wide 92% more light. With the lidar sensor and all the A15 and ISP improvements the iPhone 13 Pro is looking like a beast for photography and videography.
If you weren’t sold on the iPhone 13 Pro range, then there is the 120hz variable refresh rate screen, better battery life, brighter screens and smaller notch.
I can’t wait to test out the new cameras in real world situations, as well as see how they far with sunrises and sunsets on Dartmoor. See the results on my social media accounts – gavinsgadgets for twitter and instagram.
5 thoughts on “iPhone 13 – Thoughts from a Photographer & YouTuber”
Nicely summarised. Seems like the main improvement with each iphone series, seems to be focused on the camera hardware and ability for even more computational features aimed at video!
Thanks for that Gav. Are you going to stick with the Max size or are you going for the 13 Pro now that the cameras are the same…can’t decide which to go for myself!
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I am dropping down to the Pro. The Max is heavier than last year. Too heavy now.
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Thanks very much for that, Gav – I currently have a Nokia 7+ which is pretty much the same size as the 13 Pro Max, but much lighter at 183 grams. I picked up a (tethered) 12 Pro Max in a shop a couple of days ago and it felt massive. Difficult with the tether, but off-putting never-the-less. My wife has an ordinary iPhone 12 which feels small, compared to the 7+ and reading text on it seems a bit small so it’s tricky…
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Your wife’s iPhone 12 is the same size as the 13 Pro. Only difference being all the new iPhone’s are heavier. The 13 pro is 203g without a case. If you went Max, you would notice the weight IMO, but its a popular size nonetheless.
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