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Xiaomi 13 Ultra, the link between smartphone and professional camera

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Xiaomi 13 Ultra, the link between smartphone and professional camera

From the cameraphone to the phonecamera, from the smartphone that takes pictures well, even very well, to what is actually a real camera that has little or nothing to envy to a reflex or a mirrorless. Here is the meaning of Xiaomi 13 Ultra: Leica optics, software designed by engineers and photography experts for amateur and professional photographers, the hard core of the reflex mullahs
Xiaomi 13 Ultra is the new top of the range of the Chinese giant but in reality it does not compete with the Pro model, which, moreover, boasts the same 1-inch Sony photographic sensor, but is placed in the niche of those who want the most from the “smartphone photography”.

How it’s done?

The Xiaomi 13 Ultra is based on a quadruple set of cameras starring its 1-inch main lens, a Sony IMX989 already seen on the Xiaomi 12S Ultra and the 13 Pro. The focal lengths of the cameras range from 12mm for the wide angle to 120mm for the periscopic telephoto lens, with the main one having a distance of 23mm and 75mm for the telephoto lens. The periscope sensor also offers a 5x optical and 120X digital zoom. The main sensor, the aforementioned 1-inch IMX989, has a resolution of 50 megapixels, like the rest of the lenses, which by the way are IMX858. The novelty of the main sensor concerns the new physical aperture capable of changing from f/1.9 to f/4.0 to offer the user the possibility to “play” with the exposure levels based on the different scenes he has to capture. The whole set of cameras created, as mentioned, in collaboration with Leica (partnerzhi already started by the 12 series of 2022?, also offers various “Custom photographic styles”. These provide numerous filters and settings to make the results as similar as possible to those that you would get with a Leica camera.

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The look and the accessories

In some countries, this “smartphone camera” is offered with a kit that is already driving photography fans crazy: removable grip with shutter button and zoom control that engages on the cover (and not on the bare phone) and transparent ATule SLR filter that protects the optics group. In this way the 13 Ultra also looks like a real camera. Too bad that Xiaomi does not intend to commercialize this kit in Italy. It can still be found online but it’s a real shame and it would give an edge to a smartphone that already stands out for its photographic performance from more famous competitors such as the Samsung S23 Ultra and Apple iPhone Pro Max.

What we liked.

We went to get to know the new Xiaomi in a quick first preview contact. The photographic sector seemed to us a cut above the competitors, also at the software level thanks to a feedback from the commands of a real camera. Impeccable. We were pleasantly surprised by the finishes and also in this case it seems to be dealing with a focamera and not with a smartphone. The back in fact is made with synthetic materials that mimic leather and that tactile feelig of oregio cameras. the voluminous circular module where the photographic sensors are positioned stands out. An aesthetic that, as Xiaomi itself states, is inspired by the iconic Leica cameras. On the Xiaomi 13 Ultra we find a display that broadly remains the same as the 12S ultra, that is with a 6.73-inch Amoled LTPO panel with 2K resolution and refresh rate ranging from 1 to 120. But there is also some news in this component. In fact, the screen is the brightest on the market with its 2,600 nits of maximum brightness (the standard is 1,300 nits). Clearly, as the top models on the market want, high definition video content compatible with HDR 10 + Dolby Vision formats can be played. There are no surprises regarding the processor of the Xiaomi 13 Ultra. This mounts the latest and most advanced high-end chip from Qualcomm, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2. It is accompanied by configurations of 12 and 16 GB of LPDDR5X type RAM and internal memory equipment from 256 GB, 512 GB to 1 TB, obviously of the UFS 4.0 type. For the Italian market, however, only the 12 GB of RAM and 512GB of storage space configuration is provided. The price? 1,500 euros. Not a little but still competitive compared to rivals.

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Judgment

Taking into account that it is a high-end model capable of playing high-resolution content, as well as recording 4K video, Xiaomi has added liquid cooling for this model which they have christened Loop LiquidCool. An improved feature compared to the 12S Ultra model it’s the battery. It goes from a 4,860 mAh version of the previous model to a 5,000 mAh one. Furthermore, another improvement concerns the fast charging via cable which is now 90W, and not 67W as in the 12S Ultra model. What does not change is its wireless charging capacity limited to a maximum of 50W. Xiaomi 13 Ultra is available in limited quantities in two colors: Black and Olive Green.

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