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When it comes to testing the camera features in new iPhone models, photographer Austin Mann's detailed reviews are second to none. iPhone 12 Pro Max reviews went live this morning, and Mann's in-depth camera test is also now available.

austin-mann-iphone-12-pro-max-night-shot.jpg

Mann's review a must-read review for anyone who is interested in the iPhone 12 Pro Max for its camera, because this is the first year in some time that Apple has introduced different cameras in the Pro and Pro Max models. The Pro Max has a larger sensor and larger pixels, plus a different telephoto lens.

Despite the improvements in the iPhone 12 Pro Max over the Pro, Mann said that in his testing, he could "barely see a difference" between the two iPhones in most lighting conditions. The exception was semi-low-light scenes, such as just after sunset or in a night urban scene.

austin-mann-iphone-12-pro-camera-comparison-low-light.jpg

In these situations, the iPhone 12 Pro needed two seconds of Night Mode recording, while the iPhone 12 Pro Max needed just one second because of the larger amount of light let in by the sensor. That resulted in better photos from the Pro Max because there's less shake and subject movement.

Mann also saw improvements when shooting in very low light scenes in Night mode with a tripod and a 30-second exposure, and there's also, of course, the 5x optical zoom range enabled by the 2.5x optical zoom lens in the iPhone 12 Pro Max. The 12 Pro Max's telephoto lens has a longer focal length and a faster minimum shutter speed, so you can zoom in further.

austin-mann-iphone-12-pro-max-zoom.jpg

All in all, Mann said that while he came into the review expecting the iPhone 12 Pro Max to notably outperform the iPhone 12 Pro, the differences between the two were limited to "very specific scenes." He enjoyed the extra telephoto length of the iPhone 12 Pro Max and the low light capabilities, but he wasn't a fan of the massive size that made it hard to operate as a single-handed camera.

Both models are a "massive jump in imaging capability" and Mann says that regardless of which model is selected, people will "thoroughly enjoy" shooting with the new camera.

Mann took a whole range of photos in all lighting conditions in Zion National Park in Utah, and it's well worth clicking over to his full review to see what the iPhone 12 Pro Max camera is capable of.

Article Link: Photographer Austin Mann Shares iPhone 12 Pro Max Camera Review
 
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Just sayin...

macrumors 6502
Jan 8, 2008
350
552
Doesn’t Austin Mann rave about every iPhone camera that comes down the pike? Is he a part of Apple marketing?

 
Last edited:

e1me5

macrumors 6502
Jun 11, 2013
410
953
Cyprus
The difference between them are so minimal that I decided the 12 Pro is the best option to get. And only because the Pros will get that AppleRawPro capabilities and the regular 12s won't(for now) so they are not a substantial camera upgrade than my 6s.
 
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sofila

macrumors 65816
Jan 19, 2006
1,106
1,235
Ramtop Mountains
Doesn’t Austin Mann rave about every iPhone camera that comes down the pike? Is he a part of Apple marketing?

"Magical", "amazing", "amazing"...imagine that
 

agsystems

macrumors 65816
Aug 1, 2013
1,180
1,125
Doesn’t Austin Mann rave about every iPhone camera that comes down the pike? Is he a part of Apple marketing?

Yes, he is an Apple fan but at the end of review he would have a list of things that require improvements and his recommendations are highly accurate - bottom line don’t get the Max for the Camera alone - I am getting it because I like huge phones
 

Greatness617

macrumors newbie
Jan 25, 2017
28
23
I wish there was more useable rows on home screen and a bigger difference in the Max some how it would be more compelling at this time is 12 Pro for me. 😇
 

Makosuke

macrumors 603
Aug 15, 2001
6,383
685
The Cool Part of CA, USA
The difference between them are so minimal that I decided the 12 Pro is the best option to get. And only because the Pros will get that AppleRawPro capabilities and the regular 12s won't(for now) so they are not a substantial camera upgrade than my 6s.
I won't tell you not to believe your eyes if you think photos look similar, and as always with photography your mileage may vary. I opted for the 12 Pro myself, but the difference between the 6s and the 12-regular is not what I'd characterize "not a substantial upgrade".

I didn't have a 6s, but can say with a great deal of confidence that the difference between a 7 and the current generation is quite substantial. My wife was using a 7 at the same time as I was using an X, and even leaving aside the multi-camera benefits I could easily tell the difference between her photos and mine at a glance.

The difference between an X and 11 Pro (again, leaving aside multi-camera benefits) was noticeable but much less dramatic, and the difference between an 11 Pro and 12 Pro is minor--mostly challenging-light edge cases.

If you had an 11, XS, or maybe even an X, I might agree that the 12-regular wouldn't be a big step up, but coming from a 6s the quality improvement of any of the last two or three generations of iPhone should be immediately noticeable and I would argue pretty substantial.

Basically, over the years iPhone cameras have been on a gradual asymptote toward the hypothetical ideal camera, and while the last few models are definitely up in the flatter part of the curve, the 6s was still somewhere on the knee.
 

unobtainium

macrumors 68020
Mar 27, 2011
2,477
3,673
So the advantages of the Pro Max are:
- screen size
- bigger battery
- better camera

The disadvantages are:
- Heavier and more unwieldy

I think I could live with the smaller screen size of the Pro, and now it’s looking like the cameras are fairly similar too...so that just leaves battery life as a major factor, which admittedly is a big deal to me. Dilemmas...
 

Makosuke

macrumors 603
Aug 15, 2001
6,383
685
The Cool Part of CA, USA
its all about screen size baby! max or bust
I'm in complete agreement! Which is why I have a regular and wouldn't touch a Max, unless and until the screen can extend past the edges of the physical device. Unlike screens, my hands are of a fixed and finite size, and my pockets are finite as well.
 

Cosmosent

macrumors 68020
Apr 20, 2016
2,038
2,349
La Jolla, CA
Something doesn't make sense.

Just looked into Apple's Oct 13th Press Release, & it clearly says it's the Wide in the 12 Pro Max that got the sensor increase (to 1.7 um pixels), & that it's 47% bigger.

But, that would imply the status quo with ALL other Flagship iPhones is ONLY 1.2 um (specifically, 1.16 um) !

I believe many of us (who looked into it in the past) thought it was 1.4 um, same as Google !

And here I'm naturally referring to the pixel size.
 
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blicked

macrumors newbie
Jul 31, 2018
28
105
I’d love it if they just had three phone sizes, and then Pro and non-Pro models of each. The Pro series all have identical high end “pro” features, they’re just different sizes. The regular series is more basic and less expensive, but still the same three sizes. Six models total. Make the small ones a bit thicker to accommodate more battery size, and that’s it.

Can you tell I want a Mini Pro that isn’t a downgrade in camera?
 
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