Xiaomi 13 Professional evaluation: Leica-powered digicam champ

Xiaomi could also be recognized for launching a plethora of different phones as part of the same series, to the purpose the place it will get fairly complicated. However for individuals who solely care about having the very best all-round flagship expertise, there’s one mannequin annually value being attentive to: the numbered ‘Professional’.


For 2023, the Xiaomi 13 Professional is taking on the mantle of ‘flagship’, promising the very best of the whole lot. From show via cameras and outright efficiency and pace, it is acquired all of it. On paper at the very least. Whereas imperfect, there’s loads to like right here that makes it fairly a particular machine.

Xiaomi

Xiaomi 13 Professional

Really helpful

Xiaomi’s newest flagship ‘Professional’ machine gives an enormous quantity of efficiency for the cash, delivering a best-in-class show, nice construct high quality and stupidly quick charging speeds.

Professionals

  • Large, sharp show with 120Hz adaptive refresh
  • Stupidly quick 120W wired charging (full cost in underneath 20 minutes)
  • Bio-ceramic again and IP68 water/mud resistance
  • Nice cameras, notably the first sensor
Cons

  • MIUI is usually irritating
  • It is large and slippery

Design

  • 162.9 x 74.6 x 8.38mm – 229g
  • Ceramic again – Gorilla Glass Victus entrance
  • IP68 water/mud resistant – Ceramic Black or Ceramic White colors

Few supplies are as time-consuming to work with on smartphones as ceramics (or bio-ceramic on this case). Additionally they occur to be inherently extra sturdy than the glass that coats the rear of most units. Understandably then, it is seen very a lot as the final word high-end materials to make use of in a smartphone. Which is precisely what Xiaomi has achieved with the 13 Professional.

The bio-ceramic again on the Xiaomi 13 Professional appears to be like and feels nearly indistinguishable from glass, however offers off a smoky chromed look. A minimum of on our black evaluation unit. The look on the Ceramic White model is kind of totally different and is perhaps the one to go for when you’re notably averse to fingerprint and palm grease smudges in your telephone. It is nearly as when you solely have to consider touching it for a greasy smear to point out up.

Regardless of that, it is acquired an opulent end, and one we have grown to like. The digicam island ramps up seamlessly from the rear panel and – like earlier fashions – it has minimal traces separating the three lenses. It is also acquired the delicate Leica branding on it as an indicator to substantiate that Xiaomi labored with the long-lasting digicam firm on its optics. It is stylish as heck.

It isn’t a small machine by any means and has that heft we have turn out to be accustomed to seeing on premium flagship fashions. On first impressions, it is also fairly a heavy machine and is comfortably over the 200-gram mark. This truth alone could make the usual Xiaomi 13 slightly extra interesting for some.

xiaomi 13 pro screen hole punch

In any other case, the whole lot is fairly customary from a flagship perspective. The back and front each curve in direction of the sides, to assist in giving it a extra comfy really feel within the hand than if it was a flat, right-angled machine just like the iPhone 14 sequence.

Including to its sturdiness credentials, Xiaomi has additionally seen match to get it licensed for water and dirt resistance. It’s IP68 rated, which is about pretty much as good because it will get for a smartphone and means it will not let mud in and might survive being submerged in shallow water for as much as half-hour. So you should use it within the bathe, or within the rain, and it will be simply high quality.

  • 6.73-inch AMOLED show – 3200 x 1440 WQHD+ – 551ppi
  • 120Hz adaptive refresh – 240Hz contact response
  • Dolby Imaginative and prescient, HDR10+, HDR10 and HLG help – 10-bit color – 1200nits typical – 1900 nits peak brightness
  • Dolby Atmos twin audio system

Lately Xiaomi’s ‘Professional’ fashions have featured a number of the finest shows in the marketplace, and the Xiaomi 13 Professional is not any totally different. Its 6.73-inch AMOLED show boasts excessive decision, excessive dynamic vary, excessive refresh charges, excessive peak brightness and excessive contact response. It is acquired the whole lot.

The WQHD+ decision ensures that particulars are pin-sharp, with a pixel density of 551 pixels per inch. It is value noting – as appears to be the pattern – that this is not enabled by default. So if you need the crispiest particulars and textual content, you may want to enter settings and allow it.

xiaomi 13 pro screen in hand

Pocket-lint

Being a contemporary flagship telephone additionally means you get quick refresh charges, however greater than that, adaptive refresh charges. The show can attain a peak of 120Hz refresh rate and drop as little as simply 1Hz when required, serving to the telephone save on battery use when it would not must refresh rapidly. With 240Hz contact response onboard as nicely, the content material on-screen reacts rapidly to interplay.

Add to that the actual fact it is acquired 1200 nits typical brightness, peaks of as much as 1900 nits, help for over a billion colors and help for all of the popular HDR formats (Dolby Imaginative and prescient, HDR10+ and HLG), and also you get some of the dynamic, colour-rich and vibrant shows round. It is a very sturdy show, in each measurable means. It is a sensible show.

Simply so as to add to the media expertise, the telephone additionally has stereo audio system. A type of is inbuilt simply above the highest of the show on the entrance, and the opposite is positioned on the underside fringe of the telephone close to the USB-C port. These are boosted by Dolby Atmos help, to supply dynamic audio.

xiaomi 13 pro bottom edge

As for software program, that is MIUI 14, Xiaomi’s newest pores and skin constructed on top of Android 13. It is about as far faraway from the Pixel software program as you may think about, that includes many design and performance choices we discover irritating at instances. It takes slightly wrestling to get it behaving in a means we would like, however even then, it is not ultimate.

It isn’t the primary time we have talked about our frustrations with MIUI, in truth, it crops up just about each Xiaomi, Redmi or Poco telephone evaluation. Latest adjustments have moved it additional into the realms of counter-intuitive and cumbersome operate. Easy issues like selecting a wallpaper or a hoop/alert tone power you into Xiaomi’s Theme Retailer app, so you may’t simply merely select from a listing or pre-selected group of choices.

It isn’t our solely bug bear both. The software program continually pesters you to strive the Wallpaper Carousel function till you both disable the notifications or allow the function and even when you do, the lock display – by default – has a shortcut to the function within the backside left nook. We frequently discovered we would by chance faucet it when selecting up the telephone as a result of it is so near the sting on the curves of the show.

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Different annoying components embrace the truth that the ‘Management Centre’ and notifications are break up between the correct and left sides of the display when the telephone is first arrange. Which means a little bit of an uncomfortable stretch to get to your notifications when you’re right-handed. A minimum of, till you manually go into settings and change it again to the ‘Outdated Mode’ which drops the fast settings toggles and notifications collectively.

Add that to the truth that when it is first arrange, it plasters the house screens with your entire apps, as an alternative of hiding them away within the app drawer. It is loads to try to wrestle with simply to get it appearing intuitively. It is nearly like Xiaomi’s design workforce purposefully ignored all of the issues that make Android 13 nice – just like the lacking wallpaper color theming – and added a bunch of its personal options, which add nothing to the usability of the telephone, then attempt to power you to make use of these options.

{Hardware}, battery and efficiency

  • Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 – 12GB/256GB or 12GB/512GB – Wi-Fi 7
  • 4820mAh battery – 120W HyperCharge (1-100 per cent in 19mins) – 50W wi-fi charging

Like the remainder of the 13 Professional, the internals promise top-of-the-line efficiency – and ship. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip has provided a superb efficiency in each machine we have examined it in up to now, whether or not that is the OnePlus 11 or Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra, and that is the identical with the Xiaomi 13 Professional – particularly paired with the newest LPDDR5X RAM and UFS 4.0 storage for actually fast learn/write speeds. It is even future-proofed as one of many first telephones to launch with support for Wi-Fi 7.

Xiaomi 13 Pro rear in hand

Whatever the activity, Xiaomi’s flagship was greater than as much as it. It launches apps rapidly, and all the highest {hardware} inside means the sensation is one in every of responsiveness. We have been by no means left in lag-land and by no means skilled any noticeable stutter within the consumer interface, or whereas taking part in video games that require fast reactions. It is easy, fast, and powers via the whole lot like a champion.

This concentrate on pace is seen within the battery charging expertise too, with Xiaomi bundling a 120W HyperCharge adapter in with the Xiaomi 13 Professional. What which means – extremely – is that you simply solely want 19 minutes of charging to go from an empty battery to 100 per cent. It is fairly staggering, and has some actual advantages in on a regular basis utilization, particularly when you typically neglect to plug your telephone in at evening. Even wi-fi charging is quick. At 50W speeds, the wi-fi charger is about as quick as they arrive, however you will want to purchase Xiaomi’s bespoke charging stand to make the most of these speeds.

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It is fairly a releasing expertise by no means having to recollect to plug the telephone in at evening time, and it was by no means wanted in our testing. We would merely wait till the telephone hit underneath 20 %, then plug it in for 10-Quarter-hour, take it off cost, and repeat the cycle. It was often sufficient time to deliver us again to a full battery once more.

Due to that, battery life is rarely a priority. Not that it struggles to make it via a day. Even with our heavy testing the digicam, gaming, and video watching we did not handle to empty the battery in any 24-hour interval. It is acquired glorious standby efficiency and copes even if you use the telephone for usually battery-intensive duties.

Digital camera specs

  • 50MP f/1.9 Leica most important digicam – IMX989 1-inch sensor – HyperOIS
  • 50MP f/2.0 floating telephoto digicam – OIS
  • 50MP f/2.2 115-degree ultrawide digicam
  • Dolby Imaginative and prescient 4K/60 video recording – Portrait Evening Mode – 8K video

There isn’t any doubt that the digicam system is the primary occasion on the 13 Professional, for a number of causes. First, it incorporates a triple digicam system made up totally of 50-megapixel sensors. Second, the first digicam options a big 1-inch kind sensor, first featured on the 12S Ultra launched in China in 2022. It is a bigger sensor than what you may discover in most smartphones which – in flip – implies that every pixel is bigger than the everyday, and that is nice information for pictures lovers as a result of it means higher low-light efficiency and fewer noise typically.

XIaomi 13 Pro camera unit close up

Evaluating all three lenses, it is clear this most important digicam is the very best of the lot from trying on the general picture high quality. Photos have a very genuine high quality to them; particulars and textures look clear, with none extreme over-sharpening that we have seen on quite a lot of smartphones just lately. Pairing with Leica lenses and dealing with the long-lasting digicam firm has clearly helped Xiaomi right here. In low gentle, the primary digicam does a terrific job of lifting gentle and delivering a picture with out extreme, distracting noise within the shadows.

It isn’t lacking something on the options entrance both, if you need close-up macro pictures it makes use of the ultrawide lens to good impact, supplying you with the power to get proper up near topics and get a pointy picture with a number of depth, element and background blur.

As for colors and distinction, that is dependent upon which default color profile you utilize. Xiaomi gives each ‘Leica Genuine’ and ‘Leica Vibrant’ choice and – as you’d suspect – the previous produces photographs with barely muted, practical colors and fewer distinction, the place the Vibrant choice cranks it up barely, making colors extra saturated and distinction greater for extra visible affect. No matter which one you select you may by no means get colors pushing too far into the realm of oversaturation. The element and texture stay clear and clear.

For probably the most half, the colors and distinction are comparatively constant throughout all three lenses as nicely, which actually helps and ensures you realize what you are going to get whatever the focal size you select.

Our solely actual criticism with the Xiaomi photographs is that – typically – the darker shadowed components of photographs in some scenes could be a little too darkish. It would not use HDR as successfully as you may like to brighten up the colors and light-weight within the darker areas typically. Nonetheless, if that is the compromise for having extra practical, clearer photographs with no noise, we’re proud of that.

The first digicam is joined by what Xiaomi calls a ‘floating telephoto digicam’, which lets you zoom in simply over 3x with ‘optical zoom’ and a spotlight vary from as shut as 10cm to infinity. Briefly, you may zoom in shut, with out shedding element, and be capable to concentrate on objects even after they’re pretty near the digicam. You possibly can zoom as much as 70x digitally, however clearly, the element falls off significantly by the point you attain the higher limits, however even as much as about 10x or (at a push) 20x zoom, the photographs are nonetheless greater than usable.

Xiaomi’s zoom and a few good computational processing have additionally enabled a few options we have been delighted with too: Portrait Results and Supermoon mode. The previous of these permits you to change between 4 totally different portrait settings, every with a unique focal size, color impact, distinction and bokeh model. We beloved utilizing the black-and-white mode, which delivers a contrast-rich, sharp picture with a pure background blur. The second ‘Swirly Bokey’ mode provides a heavier blur and a comfortable (however not too comfortable) picture, which is nice for pet photographs. Actually, we took a few of our favorite footage of our cat with this digicam.

As for Supermoon, that is on one other planet to so many different smartphones. Not actually, the moon’s not a planet in spite of everything. Nonetheless, with the mode chosen from the record of digicam choices, you may take a photograph of the moon from 5x zoom to 60x zoom, and it’ll ship a picture that lowers the publicity, and – even on the excessive zoom ranges – evens out the inevitable handshake and motion. The result’s a picture with craters, shadows and element on full show. The additional you zoom, the larger the moon will get (clearly), and there’s something of a element fall-off the extra zoom you utilize – nevertheless it’s spectacular nonetheless. To have the ability to shoot it utterly handheld, with no tripod and no professional settings tweaking, is other-worldly.

We talked about that the first digicam is clearly the strongest digicam of the three, however that is actually solely clearly seen if you transfer into excessive low-light conditions. Evening mode, for instance, is an actual wrestle when you do not have quantity of road/constructing lighting to work with. Within the lowest gentle conditions, the first works very well, pulling in quite a lot of gentle from all components of the picture, whereas the first and zoom lenses do not appear anyplace close to as succesful, typically leaving you with a shot that does not seem like it is a evening mode shot in any respect. On the plus facet, you do not get a number of blur. The main points you may see are usually sharp and in focus, with no movement blur.

As for video efficiency, you get a number of energy right here. The telephone can movie Dolby Imaginative and prescient content material at 4K/60, supplying you with sharp, easy content material with deep distinction, broad color help and vibrant peaks. In the event you’re simply after the best decision video, you may shoot at 8K, however you do not get Dolby Imaginative and prescient recording at that stage.

Even the selfie digicam performs nicely, though – as traditional – not as sturdy because the rear cameras. It is all the time extra handy and simple to make use of your selfie cam to shoot your self, however when you’ve got slightly time, it is nicely value utilizing the portrait lens results to take photographs of your self or different folks. There is a richness, element and depth of area you simply cannot actually get from the entrance digicam, even in its portrait mode with the background blur. On that observe, it is good sufficient that it hardly ever misses on edge detection, so if you do use it, you are not left with unnatural-looking separation between the foreground topic and the background.

Verdict

Xiaomi’s newest Professional mannequin is a high quality machine, combining implausible efficiency with an distinctive digicam, nice battery life and a shocking show. Actually, we appreciated all of it a lot we have been joyful to place up with our frustrations with the software program so as to make the most of its capabilities.

The value level is not precisely low-cost, and that is actually one thing to think about with the Xiaomi 13 Professional. Our preliminary knee-jerk response was that it is too costly, however if you have a look at the function set, the {hardware} and the efficiency it gives, and realise it is going up towards the Galaxy S23 Ultras and iPhone 14 Pro Max‘s of the world, you get a little bit of a unique perspective. In comparison with Samsung and Apple’s prime greenback telephones, it is not terribly priced in any respect.

For some, the MIUI hurdle will likely be too nice, however when you’re joyful to take a seat and tame the telephone, you are left with one thing of a diamond from Xiaomi which exceeded our expectations from the model, and that units the tone going ahead. It is a really fantastic machine and one which delivers in buckets.

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