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iGBEditorialNew iPhone 13 camera features: What's so special?

New iPhone 13 camera features: What’s so special?

During the California Streaming event, Apple unveiled the newest iPhone 13 lineup with some breakthrough features and specs. While the company made a lot of improvements in every field, the camera module witnessed some of the biggest improvements.

Let’s explore all these features one by one and understand if it really is the most innovative camera ever. Let’s begin with specifications!

iPhone 13 Series camera specifications: At a glance

Rear camera:

SpecsiPhone 13 and 13 miniiPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max
No. of cameras23
Wide camera12MP
ƒ/1.6 aperture
Seven‑element lens
ƒ/1.5 aperture
Seven‑element lens
Ultra-Wide camera12MP
ƒ/2.4 aperture
(120° field of view)
Five‑element lens
ƒ/1.8 aperture
(120° field of view)
Six‑element lens
Telephoto cameraNA12MP
ƒ/2.8 aperture
Six‑element lens
Optical zoom 2x zoom out6x zoom range
3x zoom in
2x zoom out
Digital zoomup to 5xup to 15x
Sensor‑shift stabilization
Dual optical image stabilization

Front camera:

SpecsiPhone 13 and 13 miniiPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max
 TrueDepth Camera12MP
ƒ/2.2 aperture
ƒ/2.2 aperture
Night mode
Deep Fusion
Photographic Styles
Smart HDR 4
Macro photography
Apple ProRAW
Cinematic Mode
Cinematic video stabilization 4K, 1080p and 720p4K, 1080p and 720p
Dolby HDR video4K at 60 fps 4K at 60 fps
4K video24 fps, 25 fps, 30 fps, or 60 fps24 fps, 25 fps, 30 fps, or 60 fps
1080p HD video 25 fps, 30 fps, or 60 fps25 fps, 30 fps, or 60 fps
720p HD video 30 fps30 fps
Slow‑motion video 1080p at 120 fps1080p at 120 fps
– with stabilization
– Night mode

Apple ProRes
(up to 4K at 30 fps)
Audio zoom
8MP photos while recording

iPhone 13 and 13 mini camera hardware

The iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini-feature what Apple calls the best dual-camera system ever. These iPhones boast some significant camera improvements from last year.

Primary camera

Both iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini have a 12MP wide-angle primary camera with an ƒ/1.6 aperture and seven‑element lens. Along with the primary camera, they house a 12MP ultra-wide camera with an ƒ/2.4 aperture and a five-element lens, henceforth providing a 120° field of view.

Compared to last year’s iPhone 12 and 12 mini camera module, this year, the iPhone 13 and 13 mini camera module is designed differently, with the lenses sitting diagonally to each other.

Sensor-shift stabilization

The lenses also feature an upgrade from last year in case of stabilization. Both lenses on iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini have sensor-shift optical image stabilization, exclusive to iPhone 12 Pro Max until last year.

It’s especially helpful for low-light photography, where capturing the image needs a longer exposure time. With these new sensors, iPhone 13’s results could give tough competition to the professional setup.

Other features include:

  • Cinematic Mode
  • Bigger sensors
  • Video quality
  • Photographic styles

iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max camera hardware

iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max camera hardware

The iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max feature the most significant camera upgrade ever. Firstly, the camera module and each camera lens are significantly bigger than those of their predecessors.

Primary camera

The primary camera on the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max is a 12MP wide-angle camera with an ƒ/1.5 aperture and seven‑element lens. The ultra-wide camera is a 12MP ultra-wide with an ƒ/1.8 aperture, a six‑element lens, and a 120° field of view. The Pros also house a 12MP telephoto camera with an ƒ/2.8 aperture and a six‑element lens.

The telephoto has been upgraded with a 77mm focal length to provide a 3x optical zoom for close-ups. The entire camera module itself has a digital zoom of up to 15x. Each of the lenses houses the sensor-shift stabilization in them along with the dual optical image stabilization.

Like last year, the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max also house a LiDAR scanner.

Macro Photography 

On iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max, users can take advantage of a new mode called Macro Photography to capture really detailed shots. The new ultra-wide lens, along with the powerful autofocus system, is what makes this photography possible without the need for any external lens.

The ultra-wide lens can focus at 2cm and automatically switches to macro mode to capture super-detailed shots. Additionally, one can capture macro photos and macro videos, including slow motion and time-lapse.

Other features include:

  • Cinematic Mode
  • Photographic Styles
  • ProRes video

Learning the new iPhone 13 camera terminologies

New iPhones mean a new era of photography. And with the new era of photography comes new terminologies!

1. Cinematic Mode

Cinematic Mode on iPhone 13 Camera

This year, Apple has introduced a new feature called Cinematic Mode with the new iPhone lineup. Just like Portrait mode for photos, Cinematic Mode works by capturing a depth map of the video as it’s being filmed and blurring the background while keeping all the focus on the main subject.

Intelligent AI anticipates when a prominent new subject is about to enter the frame or if it’s gazing towards or away from the camera and automatically brings them into focus when they do.

Additionally, Cinematic Mode gives options to change the focus, adjust the level of bokeh and lock the focus at a specific distance from the camera while and after filming the video. Besides, the entire video is recorded in Dolby Vision HDR.

2. Photographic Styles

Photographic Styles on iPhone 13

Photographic Styles are another feature introduced this year with the iPhone 13 lineup. They apply different tones and warmth settings to the photos while keeping specific things like skies and skin tones natural. There are five different Apple-designed presets to choose from – Vibrant, Rich Contrast, Warm, or Cool.

Furthermore, if needed, one can fine-tune the tone and warmth of these preset with the controls provided to get the perfect look for themselves.

3. Smart HDR 4

Smart HDR 4 is the 4th in line of the Smart HDR generations. Apple first introduced Smart HDR with iPhone XS. Ever since then, with each newer generation of iPhones, Smart HDR has gained significant improvements.

With Smart HDR 4, the Neural Engine can now make unique adjustments for multiple people in a frame by automatically refining contrast, lighting, and skin tones for each person with the latest software and ISP.

4. ProRes

ProRes is a new video format available only on the iPhone 13 Pro and Pro Max. The ProRes codec lets users record video in high color fidelity and low compression. iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max are the first smartphones to shoot ProRes videos.

That covers everything you need to know about iPhone 13 camera improvements!

What are your thoughts about it? Do you think that these camera enhancements are enough to compel people to upgrade to iPhone 13 lineup? Share your opinions in the comments below.

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  • Yash Anand

    I'm a die-hard Apple Fanboy who's keen and enthusiastic to learn and explore new things in the world of technology. Besides that, I’m currently an engineering student in the field of Electronics and telecommunications, thus love playing with electronic hardware. When not exploring the world of technology, I love learning about the universe/cosmos, time travel, different paradoxes, and so on.

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