The main deal breaker is that you can buy the iPhone 13 Pro Max while the 12S Ultra is stuck in China.
Remember the Xiaomi 12S Ultra? Of course you probably do. You also probably got hyped for it, but sadly it died down because you couldn’t buy it outside of China. What a shame, because DxOMark just said that the cameras of this phone is a lot better than the iPhone. It takes two to defeat a gigantic company and that’s a little sad if you think about it.
According to DxOMark, the Xiaomi 12S Ultra scored a total of 138 points on its camera tests. Remember that DxOMark is a benchmarking tool so don’t take it as a lone source. A third-party reviewer is always a lot more accurate on what to say about a phone’s camera performance.
This is an impressive score but it still falls short against the two-year old Mate 40 Pro+. Also the camera benchmark here is far worse than that of the Mi 11 Ultra. That phone scored 143 points. Goes to show it takes more than a collab to bring powerful cameras onto phones. It’s all about the software processing, hardware aside. Take note that the Mate 40 Pro+ still had Leica branding. It just goes to show that Xiaomi still needs more time to develop their own camera software to be one of the greats. A shame, because Xiaomi constantly advertised on how great the cameras are on the 12S Ultra.
Despite these somewhat alarming flaws, the phone is still very VERY competitive. It is the 5th best camera phone tested by DxoMark, defeating the iPhone 13 Pro Max by one point. On its photo test, it scored 144 points. Very impressive for a first-time collab with Leica. Its video test is also not to be ignored, as it is one of the best in its class, garnering a score of 113 points.
DxOMark cited that the phone’s main weakness is image consistency. Some images may have a different colour reproduction than the same exact photo taken previously.
While DxOMark should not be taken as a first-hand source, its tests are trustworthy. The company has a total of 16 laboratories and has employed at least 100 engineers during its run. Also, aside from cameras, they are also the ones responsible for testing sound quality of some handsets. The company claims that they don’t sell the scores to manufacturers but instead they sell their findings and final reports.
There is certainly more room to improve and we expected that due to Xiaomi’s extreme marketing of the 12S Ultra as a camera phone, it would be number 1 in DxOMark. Still, for a first time collab, 5th place worldwide is still a huge milestone for the company.
One more thing, while the iPhone 13 Pro Max scored a point less in average, at least you can buy that anywhere in the world. It’s the biggest advantage that the iPhone 13 Pro Max has over the 12S Ultra.