Sat. May 25th, 2024

Xiaomi is the world’s third-largest smartphone maker, nevertheless it’s typically does not really feel prefer it, particularly in the event you dwell within the U.S. There, Samsung is the de facto Android cellphone, with an occasional Motorola or a Google Pixel thrown in.

However although Xiaomi’s model is extra highly effective in Asia and Europe, the corporate nonetheless makes nice telephones. Living proof, its new flagship, the Xiaomi 13 Professional. After a variety of experimenting with totally different designs and options, it seems that Xiaomi has lastly settled in and produced a real flagship killer.

Elegant, slick, and slippery

The Xiaomi 13 Professional will not promote on seems alone. Xiaomi has been directionless in relation to smartphone design, altering issues radically with every new flagship, and by no means sticking to a recognizable, constant design language. The Xiaomi 13 Professional has a large, sq. digital camera bump with barely seen lenses (examine this to the 12 Professional which had an enormous essential digital camera lens that dominated the again of the cellphone) and distinguished Leica branding. It has a slick ceramic again, rounded edges, and it appears like a quality-made object.

The digital camera bump on the again is kind of giant. You will want a case.
Credit score: Stan Schroeder/Mashable

The unit I bought is black throughout, and if I am being beneficiant, I might examine the feel and appear to that of an expensive black limousine. I desire it to the look of another current Xiaomi cellphone, however from a distance, it could actually look a bit bland. I might slightly have one thing extra colourful; the worldwide model of the cellphone additionally is available in white, which (judging from the promo pictures I’ve seen) fits it higher.

The rounded show edges and the ceramic again, whereas very nice to the contact, make the cellphone extraordinarily slippery, so you may positively want a case for this one. Xiaomi included a really primary, see-through case with the cellphone, however you may most likely need one thing nicer.

Beautiful show, a lot of energy, and nice battery life

The show is a 6.73-inch, 120Hz AMOLED with a 3,200 x 1,440 pixel decision (you may have to show it on manually within the settings; the cellphone defaults to a decrease decision to avoid wasting battery life). It is beautiful, with correct colours, deep blacks and loads of brightness once you want it. I in contrast it to the iPhone 14 Professional Max utilizing my favourite check for cellphone shows, The Weeknd’s “Starboy” video, and could not inform which show is healthier.

Whereas I used to be at it, I blasted the sound on most. The Xiaomi 13 Professional has stereo audio system (down from quad audio system on the 12 Professional) and boasts Dolby Atmos sound with head monitoring (just like Apple’s Spatial Audio). The sound is nice however not almost as loud and punchy because the sound coming from the iPhone 14 Professional Max.

With a 3,200 x 1,440 pixel decision, the Xiaomi 13 Professional is on par with a Samsung Galaxy S23 Extremely.
Credit score: Stan Schroeder/Mashable

Xiaomi was the primary firm to announce a cellphone with Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip, the identical chip that powers the Samsung’s Galaxy S23 sequence. Coupled with 12GB of RAM, it makes this cellphone quick sufficient that I by no means needed extra energy. Every thing was fluid and responsive, regardless of what number of apps I had open within the background. A recreation of PUBG flew on the very best attainable settings, and a pop-up window provided to additional optimize the cellphone’s efficiency for gaming, although I did not discover a lot of a distinction.

Having reviewed most main Xiaomi flagships that got here out previously couple of years, there was all the time just a little one thing lacking. This time, I am comfortable to say that Xiaomi has lastly reached the purpose wherein its flagship has principally each essential characteristic you’ll be able to consider. Some highlights embrace extremely quick wired charging that’ll get the cellphone from 1 to 100% in about 20 minutes, Wi-Fi 7 functionality, Bluetooth 5.3 assist, and IP68 mud and water resistance.


Apple HomePod (2023) evaluate: Large sound for Apple followers

Battery life was wonderful; the cellphone lasted roughly two days, besides once I pushed it to the restrict with video games. However with charging being this quick, it did not even matter, I might all the time plug it in for a few minutes to get sufficient extra battery juice to final me one other day.

An affordable quantity of bloatware

Software program is historically the half wherein telephones from Xiaomi (and most different Chinese language producers) do not feel very premium, principally as a result of they arrive loaded up with crap that you simply most likely do not want. Xiaomi has made enhancements right here, although some non-Google, third-party apps nonetheless do come preinstalled. Most of it’s fairly widespread stuff, like Netflix, Spotify, and, however I might nonetheless desire to put in the apps I want by myself. Fortunately, all of it may be uninstalled.

The Xiaomi 13 Professional runs on the most recent model of Xiaomi’s Android pores and skin, MIUI 14.0.11, with Android 13 beneath. It is a good and steady combo that does not shy from borrowing some options from iOS. Among the new options in comparison with MIUI 13 embrace new menu icons which are actually just a little simpler to see and the power to create folders which might be about 4 instances as giant as common ones. I favored the modifications and I felt at dwelling with the Xiaomi 13 Professional, although my essential cellphone is an iPhone. The largest points I’ve had was discovering that one pesky choice in a sea of settings, however that is a typical ailment amongst Android telephones.

Am i able to simply do away with all these bubbles in a single swipe?
Credit score: Stan Schroeder/Mashable

One factor that did annoy me had been the fixed notifications bugging me to put in an app or do one thing that I do not care a lot about. Worse, a few of these notifications are unimaginable to flick off; as a substitute, the software program requires you to work together with them and even flip an choice on earlier than the notification bubble is dismissed.

A a lot improved zoom

The ability is there, and the options are all there. Exterior of worth, which means that this cellphone’s digital camera high quality will possible decide whether or not the 13 Professional is a real competitor for Samsung’s mighty Galaxy S23 Professional and Extremely telephones, in addition to Google’s Pixel 7 which do not boast a really excessive megapixel rely, however win on Google’s picture processing energy.

The primary digital camera lenses aren’t as distinguished as on Xiaomi’s current flagships, however the digital camera is general higher.
Credit score: Stan Schroeder/Mashable

Regardless of the totally different look of the digital camera system in comparison with final yr’s mannequin, the Xiaomi 13 Professional has related digital camera specs. The rear digital camera nonetheless has three 50-megapixel sensors: one for the vast, ultra-wide, and telephoto cameras. It is a sound system, a minimum of on paper, however the digital camera efficiency of Xiaomi telephones was a bit uneven in recent times.

With the Xiaomi 13 Professional, evidently the corporate (along with its digital camera associate, Leica), has lastly discovered stability. The cellphone produces superb pictures in all situations, even at evening.

I used to be most impressed with the telephoto digital camera, which I used to take some extremely sharp photographs within the nightfall. I’ve in contrast the Xiaomi on to the iPhone 14 Professional Max, and it blew it away when it got here to zooming in in low mild.

This photograph was taken at nightfall, with a 3.2x magnification.
Credit score: Stan Schroeder/Mashable

In daylight, the iPhone’s telephoto digital camera took barely sharper pictures, however I most popular the way more pure look of the pictures I took with the Xiaomi. Xiaomi’s software program defaults to 1x, 2x, and three.2x zoom; in the event you pinch out to get much more zoom, you may get 10x and 70x choices. I used to be stunned to see that even 10x pictures look fairly good, although something above that was principally ineffective because the pictures bought very artificial-looking.

Xiaomi’s telephoto digital camera takes nice pictures in daylight as nicely.
Credit score: Stan Schroeder/Mashable

All of that is in stark distinction to final yr’s Xiaomi 12 Professional, which had an underwhelming telephoto digital camera. Digging by means of the telephones’ specs reveals the rationale: Regardless of the equivalent 50 megapixel rely, the telephoto digital camera has been upgraded from a 48mm to a 75mm lens, and it now affords 3.2x optical zoom (in comparison with 2x optical zoom on the 12 Professional).

Xiaomi’s essential digital camera was principally nice, producing very shiny and detailed pictures in low mild. Typically the low mild pictures leaned yellow, and typically the processing went too far, making the pictures unnaturally shiny, and leaving odd artifacts round mild sources (see picture beneath), however general the pictures had been by no means dangerous.

Xiaomi 13 Professional digital camera

The artifacts round mild sources spoil Xiaomi’s in any other case shiny and detailed evening photograph.
Credit score: Stan Schroeder/Mashable

iPhone 14 Professional Max digital camera

The iPhone 14 Professional Max took a sharper, extra correct photograph, however it’s kind of too darkish.
Credit score: Stan Schroeder/Mashable

Unsurprisingly, Xiaomi took wonderful pictures in daylight. The Leica-tuned digital camera software program affords two primary taking pictures modes, “Leica Vibrant” and “Leica Genuine.” I principally caught with the latter, however the distinction is delicate, with “Vibrant” producing barely brighter pictures with extra vibrant colours.

If the situations are excellent, you’ll be able to change to Xiaomi’s 50-megapixel mode, however more often than not it is higher to stay with the common taking pictures mode.
Credit score: Stan Schroeder/Mashable

Xiaomi 13 Professional’s ultra-wide digital camera is a step down in high quality, and needs to be used solely when the principle digital camera simply does not go vast sufficient.

The ultra-wide digital camera needs to be used sparingly.
Credit score: Stan Schroeder/Mashable

When you transcend Xiaomi’s primary digital camera options and faucet on the “Extra” button within the digital camera software program, you may get a ton extra choices, together with unique ones like Supermoon. Swiping far left within the backside menu will open up Professional mode, which allows you to management almost each facet of the digital camera, together with white stability, ISO sensitivity, and shutter velocity. General, there is a ton of settings to undergo, and I reckon solely essentially the most persistent customers will strive all of them out.

Lastly, the selfie digital camera is a 32-megapixel shooter that comes with a ton of choices, together with a large number of filters and beautifying choices; do not go overboard otherwise you’ll find yourself wanting like a cartoon character. On default settings, the pictures come out very detailed however comfortable and barely washed out, which is fairly straightforward to repair within the settings.

I suppose that is how I look.
Credit score: Stan Schroeder/Mashable

General, it seems that Xiaomi has lastly managed to place collectively a smartphone digital camera that takes nice pictures in most situations. It could not win each battle in opposition to different prime telephones, nevertheless it’ll all the time be aggressive.

One of the best Xiaomi cellphone shortly

The headphone jack is, sadly, absent.
Credit score: Stan Schroeder/Mashable

I like this cellphone greater than I favored any Xiaomi cellphone that got here out previously couple of years. Its design might not be essentially the most thrilling, nevertheless it’s fairly glossy however (be sure you try each colours to see which one you fancy), with a stunning show and a elaborate ceramic again. It matches Samsung’s lately launched Galaxy S23 Plus on energy and options, and has a really succesful digital camera system. It fees extraordinarily quick, and its battery lasts as much as two days.

At writing time, I had no information on an important piece of the puzzle: pricing. Characteristic-wise, the Xiaomi 13 Professional is a mixture between the Galaxy S23+ and the Galaxy S23 Extremely, which begin at $999.99 and $1,199.99, respectively. If the Xiaomi 13 Professional within reason priced (for instance, the Xiaomi 12 Professional began at $999), it is going to be a really sturdy competitor to any Android flagship on the market.

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