With a 6.7-inch display, incredible cameras, 5G, and the greatest battery life, the iPhone 12 Pro Max is the best iPhone money can buy.
- Best-in-class cameras
- Excellent battery life
- Immersive 6.7-inch display
- Superior performance
- Convenient MagSafe charging
- Charger sold separately
- A bit heavy and bulky
- No 120Hz display
IPHONE 12 PRO MAX SPECS
Display: 6.7 inches (2778 x 1284)
Colors: Silver, Graphite, Gold, Pacific Blue
Storage: 128GB, 256GB, 512GB
Rear cameras: 12MP wide (f/1.6), 12MP ultra-wide (f/2.4), 12MP telephoto (f/2.2)
Zoom: 2.5x optical/12x digital
Front camera: 12MP TrueDepth (f/2.2)
5G: sub-6Ghz, mmWave
Battery: 3,687 mAh
Battery life: 10 hours 53 minutes
Size: 6.33 x 3.07 x 0.29 inches
Weight: 8.03 ounces
iPhone 12 Pro Max review: Price and release date
The iPhone 12 Pro Max was released on November 13th, with a starting price of $1,099/£1,099 for 128GB of storage. A 256GB upgrade will set you back $1,199/£1,199, while a 512GB upgrade will set you back $1,399/£1,399.
Regardless of storage, the iPhone 12 Pro Max costs $100/£100 more than the ordinary iPhone 12 Pro.
It’s worth noting that the iPhone 12 Pro Max does not include a charger. A fast 20W charger will set you back $19, while Apple’s MagSafe charger will set you back $39.
iPhone 12 Pro Max review: Design and colors
In comparison to the ordinary iPhone 12 Pro, the iPhone 12 Pro Max is a monster of a phone. It’s the difference between having a flagship phone you can operate with one hand and having one that you can’t.
You get a considerably larger and immersive display in exchange, which not only fits more information on the screen at once but also provides you a larger keyboard for typing and a mini-movie theater in your pocket.
The iPhone 12 Pro Max seems to be more opulent than the iPhone 11 Pro Max. This is owing to the new phone’s flatter, smoother edges. The glossy gleaming gold stainless steel on my device was really attractive. It’s the smartphone equivalent of jewelry. The finish, on the other hand, absorbs fingerprints rapidly.
Apart from gold, the more common silver and graphite, as well as the eye-catching Pacific Blue that was seen on the regular iPhone 12 Pro, are the other color options.
The iPhone 12 Pro’s notch is still rather large, but the True Depth camera for Face ID is still quite helpful. I only wish Apple could integrate Touch ID into the display or the power button like it did with the new iPad Air.
The iPhone 12 Pro Max is somewhat heavier than its predecessor, measuring 6.33 x 3.07 x 0.29 inches and weighing 8.03 ounces. However, because Apple reduced the screen’s borders, you get a larger display of the same size.
With dimensions of 6.33 x 3.07 x 0.29 inches and a weight of 8.03 ounces, the iPhone 12 Pro Max is somewhat heavier than its predecessor. You get a bigger display in a same size since Apple shortened the screen’s boundaries.
Review of the iPhone 12 Pro Max: Display
The iPhone 12 Pro Max’s 6.7-inch OLED display is smaller but brighter than the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra 6.9-inch OLED panel. I experienced a burst of colors while watching Stranger Things, which almost made me forget I was holding a phone.
Furthermore, the iPhone 12 Pro Max’s display is the most color-accurate we’ve ever seen. The panel received a score of 0.07 on the Delta-E test, with 0 being ideal. The score for the Note 20 Ultra was 0.24.
The display of the iPhone 12 Pro Max averaged 654 nits in our lab tests, compared to 662 nits on the Galaxy S9. Indirect sunlight, though, we found the iPhone’s screen to be easier to see.
The iPhone 12 Pro Max’s sole flaw is the lack of a smooth 120Hz rate, which, like the newest Samsung flagships, would have allowed for smoother navigation and improved gaming. Let’s keep our fingers crossed for an iPhone 13!
iPhone 12 Pro Max review: Cameras
Given the quality of the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra and Google Pixel 5, the iPhone 12 Pro Max has the best camera of any phone.
The iPhone 12 Pro Max has a larger main sensor than the iPhone 12 Pro, which improves low-light performance by 87 percent over the iPhone 11 Pro Max. The primary lens of the iPhone 12 Pro Max sports a fast f/1.6 aperture and a LiDAR sensor for quicker autofocus.
The 12MP telephoto lens in the iPhone 12 Pro Max also has a 2.5x optical zoom, which is less than the Note 20 ultra’s 5x but more than the iPhone 12 Pro’s 2x.
The iPhone 12 Pro Max camera’s Smart HDR 3 capabilities also did an excellent job capturing a challenging shot of a river in the background of several trees with a complex combination of sunlight and shadows.
Finally, this image from Night Mode shows how Apple’s LiDAR sensor gives it an edge. It can shoot portraits in night mode that the Pixel 5 can’t. As a result, my face is much more in focus in the iPhone 12 Pro Max shot.
iPhone 12 Pro Max review: Performance
The A14 Bionic CPU in the iPhone 12 Pro Max, coupled with 6GB of RAM, is unrivaled in terms of pure performance. I kicked, stabbed, and impaled foes with impunity in the Arena fighting game, yet the action remained as fluid and smooth as a console.
In terms of sheer performance, the iPhone 12 Pro Max’s A14 Bionic CPU, combined with 6GB of RAM, is unparalleled. In the Arena fighting game, I kicked, stabbed, and impaled opponents with impunity, yet the action remained as fluid and smooth as a console.
The iPhone 12 Pro Max beat the Android competition in Geekbench 5, as expected. The multi-core test gave Apple’s phone 4,111 points, while the single-core test gave it 1,603 points. The Snapdragon 865 Plus CPU in the Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, on the other hand, only received 3,294 and 985 points.
Our own video editing abilities were put to the test. The iPhone 12 Pro Max took just 28 seconds to convert a 4K movie to 1080p, compared to 1 minute and 16 seconds for the Note 20 Ultra.
iPhone 12 Pro Max review: 5G
All 5G frequencies, including sub-6GHz and mmWave, are supported with the iPhone 12 Pro Max. I tested the phone on T-network Mobile’s network in central New Jersey and saw acceptable — but not blazing — speeds.
Using the Speedtest.net app, the iPhone 12 Pro Max reached a maximum download speed of 211 Mbps and a maximum upload speed of 77.5 Mbps.
The iPhone 12 Pro Max, like the other iPhone 12 models, includes a Smart Data Mode that allows it to go from 3G to 4G in a matter of seconds. When the screen is switched off, such as when streaming music, this is very handy.
iPhone 12 Pro Max review: Battery life
Longer battery life is one of the most compelling reasons to upgrade to the iPhone 12 Pro Max.
On Tom’s Guide’s battery test, which includes continuous web browsing over 5G, the iPhone 12 Pro Max lasted 10 hours and 53 minutes. That’s more than two hours longer than the regular iPhone 12 Pro’s 9:06 minute runtime.
With a runtime of 10:26 over 5G and 7:59 with the 120Hz display mode on, Samsung’s Galaxy Note 20 Ultra was slightly behind the 12 Pro Max.
iPhone 12 Pro Max review: Charging
Apple does not provide a charger with the 12 Pro Max, as it does with the rest of the iPhone 12 range. That may be the environmentally friendly option, as Apple has maintained, but it’s also inconvenient, especially if you want to charge your phone quickly.
In 30 minutes, a $19 20W fast charger would charge a depleted iPhone 12 Pro Max to just under 50%. MagSafe, on the other hand, is gaining popularity since it works with the iPhone 12 Pro Max’s magnets to make charging a breeze. This $39 charger is 15W, which is slower than prior iPhone wireless chargers, but it is twice as quick.
Just keep in mind that you’ll need a power brick and MagSafe adapter, as they’re sold separately.
The iPhone 12 Pro Max is also compatible with a growing number of MagSafe accessories, such as magnetic covers and wallets, as well as Apple’s $129 MagSafe Duo charger, which charges both your iPhone and Apple Watch at the same time. However, in order for this attachment to operate, you’ll need to invest in a 20W charger.
iPhone 12 Pro Max vs iPhone 12 Pro
Most of the features on the iPhone 12 Pro Max and iPhone 12 Pro are identical, but there are a few important variations. While both flagship phones have Apple’s A14 Bionic processor, 5G, and OLED screens, the iPhone 12 Pro Max’s 6.7-inch display dwarfs the iPhone 12 Pro’s 6.1-inch display.
In addition, the iPhone 12 Pro Max has a greater optical zoom (2.5x vs. 2x) and a larger digital zoom than the iPhone 12 Pro (12x vs 10x). The iPhone 12 Pro also has a bigger sensor for its primary wide camera, which allows for more light to enter.
Apart from the bigger display, the extended battery life is the main reason to choose the iPhone 12 Pro Max over the normal iPhone 12 Pro.
iPhone 12 Pro Max vs Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra
The iPhone 12 Pro Max has a strong competitor in the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra, which features powerful dual telephoto cameras for up to 10x optical zoom. It also has a 120Hz AMOLED display, a greater battery life, and compatibility for the S Pen. The S21 Ultra, on the other hand, starts at $100 more and falls below the iPhone 12 Pro Max in terms of performance and overall image quality.
See our in-depth Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra vs iPhone 12 Pro Max face-off to see which phone is right for your needs.
iPhone 12 Pro Max review: Verdict
In a few crucial areas, the iPhone 12 Pro Max stands up to its moniker. You get a considerably larger display and much longer battery life than the standard iPhone 12 Pro. Personally, I didn’t think the iPhone 12 Max’s bigger camera sensor-generated significantly better-looking photos than the other iPhone 12 models, although it is good to have a stronger zoom.
It all boils down to whether you want a phone with a smaller screen or one with a larger one. Although I like the latter, you can’t go wrong with any iPhone 12 Pro model. With typically superior cameras and quicker performance, the iPhone 12 Pro Max has placed the Android competition on notice. With its more powerful zoom and vibrant 120Hz display, the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra is a terrific option, but the iPhone 12 Pro Max remains our top selection overall.
Some may choose to wait for the iPhone 13 range, which is expected to arrive this autumn, but the iPhone 12 Pro Max is the finest iPhone right now.
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