Whether or not we’re speaking in regards to the iPhone 14, the iPhone 14 Pro, or the iPhone 14 Pro Max, this 12 months’s replace focuses on the cameras.

Sure, the Pro fashions have always-on shows and an oh-so-very-Apple strategy to changing the controversial display notch. However as nifty as these perks are, they shouldn’t be the explanations you purchase these telephones.

The cameras at the moment are so outstanding—within the Pro fashions particularly—that it’s beginning to really feel like we should always name these units “smartcameras” somewhat than smartphones.

The smartphone has been kind of perfected through the years; there aren’t many new frontiers to discover in that house. However in methods each large and small, Apple (together with its rivals) retains discovering new methods to enhance the newbie digital images expertise.

As a consequence, the iPhone 14 fashions are a number of the greatest smartcameras you should purchase—although they are not a revolutionary improve over the units that got here earlier than them.

Concerning the iPhone 14

As a result of the iPhone 14 is such a modest year-over-year replace, we’ve lumped it in with the 14 Pro on this evaluation. A lot of the evaluation will focus on the 14 Pro and 14 Pro Max, however we’ll focus on the common 14 briefly in its personal part right here, and we’ll assess the telephones collectively within the efficiency and cameras part of the evaluation.

The iPhone 14 is barely a step up over 2021’s iPhone 13. It has the identical design and, no less than at launch, the identical characteristic set. It additionally has the identical system-on-a-chip (SoC), the A15, so it presents equivalent efficiency, although the thermals are reportedly a little higher for sustained efficiency, and there’s a tweak that ought to barely enhance graphics efficiency, too.

The iPhone 14’s most vital benefits over the iPhone 13 are in battery life and picture high quality. Whereas the iPhone 13 advertises as much as 19 hours of video playback, the iPhone 14 guarantees as much as 20. It’s not a lot of a bounce (and we did not discover it) however hey, we’ll take what we are able to get since few issues are extra vital than battery life.

As for picture high quality, we’ll have a look at some comparability photographs within the digicam part of this evaluation, however right here’s the fast rundown: there’s a new front-facing, TrueDepth digicam with a sooner aperture and assist for autofocus. The primary sensible profit from these enhancements is that the digicam ought to have higher low-light efficiency.

The wide-angle digicam on the again of the iPhone 14 has a bigger sensor and a sooner aperture, and it guarantees 49 % higher low-light picture efficiency than its predecessor. Apple has expanded the software program suite for the digicam considerably to supply improved low-light efficiency throughout all of the cameras on the telephone. In different phrases, the common iPhone 14 is getting some perks that have been seen in final 12 months’s Pro fashions.

When restore store/publication iFixit tore down the iPhone 14, it found one thing Apple hadn’t marketed: the iPhone 14 is simpler to service and restore than different current iPhones—together with its Pro brethren—due to a detachable again glass panel. For many customers, that gained’t matter a lot, however for some, it might enhance the longevity of the gadget and lower your expenses on repairs must you skip AppleCare+, Apple’s restore service subscription.

On October 7, Apple plans to launch a new iPhone 14 mannequin referred to as the iPhone 14 Plus. It is going to possible be equivalent to the iPhone 14, simply with a 6.7-inch display (the identical measurement because the iPhone 14 Pro Max) as a substitute of 6.1 inches.

This 12 months, the iPhone 14 Plus replaces the a lot smaller 5.4-inch iPhone 13 mini within the flagship lineup, although Apple is nonetheless promoting the iPhone 13 mini for customers preferring one-handed telephones at the price of display measurement and battery life.

Not at all would we advocate upgrading from the iPhone 13 to the iPhone 14. We wouldn’t even advocate going from the 12 to the 14, actually—there have been iterative enhancements, however even over a couple of generations it hasn’t added as much as something radical, particularly within the non-Pro fashions.

However when you’re on an XS or earlier, there are some substantial upgrades right here; for extra on these, take a look at our iPhone 13 and 13 Pro evaluation from final 12 months. Just about every little thing stated there in regards to the 13 applies right here, too.

Specs

Specs at a look: iPhone 14, 14 Pro, 14 Pro Max
Display screen2532×1170 6.1-inch OLED (14), 2556×1179 6.1-inch OLED (14 Pro), 2796×1290 6.7-inch OLED (14 Pro Max)
OSiOS 16
CPUApple A16 Bionic
RAM6GB
GPUApple A16 Bionic
Storage128, 256, or 512GB for 14; 128, 256, 512GB, or 1TB for 14 Pro/Max
NetworkingWi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5, 5G
PortsLightning
DigicamTwo 12 MP rear cameras (wide-angle, ultra-wide-angle) for 14; three rear cameras (48 MP wide-angle, 12 MP ultra-wide-angle, 12 MP telephoto) for 14 Pro/Max; 12 MP entrance digicam; Dolby Imaginative and prescient HDR 4K video seize
Measurement146.7×71.5×7.8 mm (14), 147.5×71.5×7.85 mm (Pro), 160.7×77.6×7.85 mm (Pro Max)
Weight172 g (14), 206 g (Pro), 240 g (Max)
Beginning value$799 (14), $999 (Pro), $1,099 (Max)
Different perksMagSafe, Face ID, Dynamic Island (Pro fashions), always-on show (Pro fashions)

The iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max are the primary units to make use of Apple’s new A16 SoC, the primary iPhone chip constructed on a 4 nm course of.

The A16 has the identical variety of cores as its predecessor—that is, it has a 6-core CPU with two efficiency and 4 effectivity cores, a 6-core GPU, and a 16-core NPU referred to as the Neural Engine—however Apple says it ought to supply as much as 10 % sooner efficiency. The A16 has 50 % extra reminiscence bandwidth than the A15, which issues a nice deal for 3D video games and a little bit for computational images options.

So the A16 is not a large efficiency leap ahead, other than the reminiscence bandwidth half. However this chip’s updates weren’t actually targeted on velocity. Slightly, they’re about facilitating new options. Most significantly, the chip has a new ISP, which allows a number of the new digicam options and extra constancy. It additionally has a new show engine. The show engine tweaks make the 2 flashiest new options doable: the always-on show and the performance of the notch-replacing Dynamic Island.

Just like the iPhone 13 Pro, the iPhone 14 Pro has 6GB of RAM.

In the meantime, the iPhone 14 sticks with final 12 months’s A15, which is nonetheless sooner than another telephone SoC in the marketplace at most duties. It will get a bump from 4GB of RAM to 6GB.

The display sizes and show resolutions for all three telephones are the identical as final 12 months: 6.1 inches and 2,556 by 1,179 pixels for the iPhone 14 Pro, 6.7 inches and 2,796 by 1,290 for the iPhone 14 Pro Max, and 6.1 inches and 2,532 by 1,170 for the iPhone 14. By way of pixel density, all three clock in at 460 ppi. And all three use OLED tech, which is anticipated for almost any high-end flagship smartphone today, and for good motive.

The iPhone 14 presents 800 nits of typical max brightness and 1,200 nits of peak HDR brightness—the identical because the iPhone 13.

The iPhone 14 Pro and its larger sibling supply a searing 1,000 nits of typical max brightness and 1,600 nits of peak HDR brightness, in addition to a new capacity to succeed in 2,000 nits in sunny, outside situations. That is higher than even the perfect high-end HDR TVs, and higher than any laptop monitor besides {hardware} utilized by video professionals. In truth, the 1,600 nit peak HDR brightness matches Apple’s $5,000 Pro Show XDR.

Our assessments largely bore these claims out, which is fairly spectacular. These are in all probability going to be the highest-quality screens you’ve ever owned, no matter what sort of gadget we’re speaking about.

Final 12 months, Apple launched ProMotion to the iPhone, enabling dynamic refresh charges from 10 Hz to 120 Hz. That is nonetheless on supply right here, however the characteristic can now go all the way down to 1 Hz to assist the always-on show. (Extra on that quickly.)

There’s additionally an added mild sensor on the telephone, bringing the rely to 2.

Lastly, there’s an up to date sensor suite to allow a new crash detection security characteristic. If it detects a crash, it would immediate to see if you’re okay and name for assist when you’re not. This characteristic requires the up to date sensors, so it will not be obtainable in older iPhones, nevertheless it’s obtainable throughout the iPhone 14 line in addition to new Apple Watch fashions launching this 12 months.

Apple plans yet one more security characteristic: the Pro fashions can ship easy textual content messages and location information to emergency responders through satellite tv for pc once you’re off the grid and need assistance. That characteristic gained’t roll out till November, although.

One factor we want Apple had improved is quick charging. All of those new iPhones nonetheless cost a lot slower than some Android flagships, each wired and wi-fi, which is a pity. That is the type of little factor that may make a sensible distinction in customers’ day-to-day lives. Here is hoping we’ll see some enchancment subsequent 12 months.

As all the time, there’s only one port: Apple’s proprietary Lightning port. Like a lot of the remainder of the world, we want Apple would transfer on to USB-C.

In any case, Apple guarantees modestly improved battery life within the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max. We’re nonetheless operating formal battery assessments, however anecdotally it felt like the brand new telephones supply about the identical, or perhaps even simply barely worse, battery life.

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