As with the previous generation, the ‘standard’ iPhone 13 and its Mini sibling ship with a pair of lenses, while the Pro and Pro Max versions feature three. And the resolutions haven’t changed: front and rear, every camera on every iPhone 13 model has a 12MP sensor. But the pixels on those sensors have changed – as has a lot of photographic trickery.
On the iPhone 13 and Mini, the main cameras are now diagonally aligned (rather than vertically stacked), quite possibly to make space for the extra tech beneath. The updated wide-angle camera ships with the biggest sensor ever seen on a dual-camera iPhone, with larger pixels that can grab more light in dimly lit scenes. It’s now equipped with sensor-shift optical image stabilisation, too, while the ultra-wide sensor has also been improved. As for footage, the iPhone 13 and Mini can both shoot 4K HDR with Dolby Vision at up to 60fps.
Sounds impressive? The iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max tick even more boxes for photographers. All three rear shooters have been revamped to make them more advanced than ever before. The wide-angle lens uses the largest pixels on any iPhone, which should mean immense low-light performance (especially paired with an f/1.5 aperture). The ultra-wide is similarly improved with an f/1.8 aperture, together with autofocus which unlocks macro stills and video for the first time. Rounding out the trio is the new 77mm equivalent telephoto, with 3x optical zoom.
Boosted by the new A15 Bionic chip (see below) and a fresh image signal processor, the new iPhone 13 models get plenty of fresh software tricks too. Night mode is available across all cameras on the Pro and Pro Max – and those models also now support the ProRes video codec. Every model benefits from the captivating Cinematic mode (allowing you to easily recreate Hollywood ‘rack focus’ depth of field effects) and new Photographic Styles presets, which cleverly apply custom editing preferences to the right parts of your pictures.
Selfie fiend? All four iPhone 13 models have the same 12MP front-facing TrueDepth camera for Face ID, Animoji and the rest.