iPhone 13 Pro Max vs 13 Pro (vs 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max)

iPhone 13 Pro Max vs iPhone 13 Pro

In this article, we’ll be focusing on the 13 pro and 13 pro max. Where the upgrades improve the three key aspects of a smartphone: Display, Battery life, and Cameras.

We’ll be going through everything that’s new with the pro phones. How these compared to last year’s models, the differences between the 13 pro and 13 pro max, and of course whether these are worth buying or upgrading.


DESIGN AND BUILD QUALITY

The design is very similar to last year’s iPhone. Apple has stayed true to its flat design, using a stainless steel frame and frosted glass on the back. The gold graphite and silver colours have slight variations, but this year’s standout new finish is the sierra blue.

To accommodate the new lenses, the camera bump has grown in size and thickness. But other than that, the button layout is the same as last year, just a little lower this year.

iPhones still use a lightning connector, despite USB-C being available on recent iPad models. The Pro iPhones, for all their capabilities, should at the very least have USB-C.

I think the most significant change in design is the smaller notch. Face ID uses the exact same sensors. By moving the speaker grille to the top, Apple has been able to reduce the notch by around 20%. Because the notch is smaller than the previous iPhone’s, it does technically give you more screen space to work with.. But in the end, it’s just a notch that you’ll soon forget.

The build quality is still outstanding. There’s a ceramic shield glass on the front, which Apple claims is the toughest in any smartphone, and IP68 water resistance, so no changes from last year, but Apple maintains its lead in terms of durability and build quality.

The phones keep the same height and width of last year but now these are slightly thicker and heavier.

iPhone 13 ProiPhone 13 Pro MaxiPhone 12 ProiPhone 12 Pro Max
Height146.7 mm160.8 mm146.7 mm160.8 mm
Width71.5 mm78.1 mm71.5 mm78.1 mm
Depth7.65 mm7.65 mm7.4 mm7.4 mm
Weight203 g238 g187 g226 g
Dimensions and Weight

There’s no huge difference from the 12 series but ergonomics is perhaps the most important factor separating the 13 pro from the 13 pro max.

The smaller Pro is definitely the easier phone to hold and use, you can reach across the display into the corners more easily. It’s easier to type on Pro Max and your content looks better on the bigger screen.

All of your content looks better on the iPhone 13 Pro Max’s larger screen. As a result, the tradeoff between practicality and aesthetics is one that has an impact on day-to-day life. The 13 Pro has an easier-to-use for me, and it’s one of the most significant differences between the two devices.


DISPLAY DIFFERENCE

There’s the display size difference but otherwise the Pro’s displays are the same and both of these receive some really nice if not overdue upgrades.

iPhone 13 ProiPhone 13 Pro MaxiPhone 12 ProiPhone 12 Pro Max
6.1″ Display6.7″ Display6.1″ Display6.7″ Display
Super Retina XDRSuper Retina XDRSuper Retina XDRSuper Retina XDR
2532×1170 (460 ppi)2778×1284 (458 ppi)2532×1170 (460 ppi)2778×1284 (458 ppi)
Wide Colour (P3)Wide Colour (P3)Wide Colour (P3)Wide Colour (P3)
1000 Nits Max Brightness (Typical)1000 Nits Max Brightness (Typical)800 Nits Max Brightness (Typical)800 Nits Max Brightness (Typical)
1200 Nits Max Brightness (HDR)1200 Nits Max Brightness (HDR)1200 Nits Max Brightness (HDR)1200 Nits Max Brightness (HDR)
ProMotion Display (Adaptive up to 120 Hz)ProMotion Display (Adaptive up to 120 Hz)60 Hz Display60 Hz Display
Display Specifications

One noticeable improvement from last year is that the brightness has increased by 25% to reach 1000 nits. This is significant because, while peak brightness is often the focus, it only applies to HDR content, this upgrade has an impact on everyday use. As a result, even in the most direct sunlight, mobile devices are clearly visible.

The new pro motion display is the most significant improvement. Finally, we have an iPhone with a high refresh rate. Even though this might only be of interest to tech enthusiasts. But I think if normal user tried this then they will also find it difficult to go back to 60 hertz.

Pro motion just feels amazingly fluid to use. Depending on your graphics requirements, the display will intelligently ramp up and down from 10 to 120 hertz. With iOS 15, the phone will even start anticipating swipes, making adaptive refresh rate a breeze. And ProMotion, of course, opens up the possibility of high-refresh-rate gaming.


PERFORMANCE AND SOFTWARE

The 13 Pro’s are ridiculously fast. Once again the latest iPhone’s are the fastest smartphones on the market. Apple will give you numbers like up to 50% faster than the leading competition.

iPhone 13 ProiPhone 13 Pro MaxiPhone 12 ProiPhone 12 Pro Max
Single1727172715931691
Multi4800486338934106
Geekbench 5 Scores

This might give you an idea of the power increase from last year’s phones. The iPhone 13 Series feel a little more snappy because of ProMotion Display. Overall, I want to say that these phones are super powerful and blow the rest of the competition away.

Speaking of iOS though the latest version is iOS 15 which brings new features like redesign notifications, custom focus modes, and a ton of new content sharing options with imessage and facetime. But there’s nothing new that’s exclusive to the 13 series.

BATTERY AND CHARGING

The best part of the new software is the efficiency it brings combined with the new hardware. The 13 Pro’s get both a new chipset as well as bigger batteries and battery life as a result has taken a massive leap forwards.

iPhone 13 ProiPhone 13 Pro MaxiPhone 12 ProiPhone 12 Pro Max
Up to 20 HoursUp to 25 HoursUp to 11 HoursUp to 12 Hours
Video Playback (YouTube)

Both of these phones can easily last two days, and the 13 Pro Max has the best battery life of any smartphone I’ve ever used, even beating Samsung’s S21 ultra. The battery life hasn’t been harmed by the ProMotion display, and both of these models are noticeably longer than last year’s models.

There are three major differences between the 13 Pro and the 13 Pro Max. We’ve talked about ergonomics, display size, and battery life, and now it’s time to talk about battery life. Yes, the 13 Pro Max will last significantly longer, and it is the model to choose if you want the best battery life. However, I believe the 13 Pro’s battery life is excellent. The battery life no longer needs to be a concern, if you prefer that smaller form factor.

However, the charging experience hasn’t changed. As a result, we now have 15-watt fast wireless charging with magsafe, which is still extremely convenient. Normal wireless charging is 7.5 watts, and fast charging with a lightning cable is 20 watts, which can give you a 50% charge in 30 minutes.

SHOULD YOU BUY/UPGRADE TO 13 PRO/13 PRO MAX ?

First off, they come in at the same prices as last year. $999 for the 13 Pro and $1099 for the 13 Pro Max. There’s also an option for a one 1TB model this year too, so if you’re gonna be shooting a lot in dolby vision might be worth considering. Apple focused on the displays, the battery life, and the cameras this year, exactly, what many people care about the most.

The 13 Pro’s offer some great improvements but of course it depends on what phone you’re coming from. If you have one of 12 Series phones, an upgrade just isn’t going to be worth it. However anyone with an older iPhone or even an android phone might want to skip the 12 series and go for one of the 13 Pro’s.

Battery life is also the reason I think the 13 Pro is worth getting over the 13 Pro Max. I know some people love the bigger Pro Max, it’s the display and battery champ and i’m not going to change the minds of those people. It’s ultimately a personal preference thing anyway. But now that the cameras are identical and now that the 13 Pro has such good battery life, I think the smaller more comfortable form factor makes it the better choice at $100 cheaper.

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