Xiaomi 13 Pro Review: Amazing Camera Meets Style

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Xiaomi 13 Pro Review

Xiaomi finally announced the Xiaomi 13 Pro, and it’s coming to the Philippines at PhP59,999. Its price is decent, especially when compared to the Galaxy S23 Ultra and OnePlus 11. However, is this phone that I can recommend based on my experience?

Here’s my full review!

Design

In terms of design, the Xiaomi 13 Pro looks extremely elegant. It has a curved 6.73-inch AMOLED display with a refresh rate of up to 120Hz. When you compare it to the Galaxy S23 Ultra, you can see that its curvature is more pronounced. It’s up to you which one you prefer, but if you ask me, I prefer the one with a little bit of edge.

Display

When it comes to display performance, the Xiaomi 13 Pro does not disappoint. It offers flagship-level quality that is sure to impress even the most discerning tech enthusiasts. Its peak brightness level of up to 1900 nits is truly remarkable, and far surpasses what is offered by other high-end smartphones on the market.

xiaomi 13 pro review

However, one thing to keep in mind is that the Xiaomi 13 Pro is quite heavy. It’s important to note this as it can be a potential drawback, especially for those who prefer a lighter phone. When unboxing the phone, its weight is one of the first things you’ll notice. This weight can also pose a risk in case the phone is accidentally dropped. The only assurance you have that it won’t shatter is its Gorilla Glass Victus protection on its display. Unfortunately, it’s unclear if its back panel, including its huge camera bump, is also protected by any glass or film. Therefore, it’s highly recommended to use a phone case to protect it from any potential damages.

Despite the weight, the Xiaomi 13 Pro has plenty of other great features that more than make up for it. In particular, its performance and camera capabilities are exceptional. So, while the weight may be a minor setback, it’s definitely worth considering all the other features this phone has to offer.

Performance

When it comes to performance, the Xiaomi 13 Pro has proven to be impressive and has met my expectations. In fact, in my experience, it even performs better than the OnePlus 11. I believe that this is due to the software being more refined and optimized with the chipset, resulting in an overall better performance.

xiaomi 13 pro review

As for benchmark results, the Xiaomi 13 Pro’s performance is not too far behind compared to the Galaxy S23 Ultra and OnePlus 11. Although you can still sense that the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is more overclocked on the Galaxy S23 Ultra compared to other devices with the same chipset. Nevertheless, this won’t be noticeable when using the phone for gaming or productivity.

xiaomi 13 pro review
xiaomi 13 pro review
xiaomi 13 pro review
xiaomi 13 pro review
xiaomi 13 pro review
xiaomi 13 pro review

Playing games on this device is fantastic, thanks to its features that compensate for its performance. In general, devices tend to heat up quickly when playing games, especially if they’re utilizing a lot of CPU and GPU power. Thermal issues can result in throttling, and while this is rare, it can significantly affect the phone’s overall performance, particularly when playing games. Fortunately, the Xiaomi 13 Pro remains much cooler than the Galaxy S23 Ultra under the same room conditions and when playing the same games. During my test, the temperature hovered around 35C to 37C while playing Genshin Impact at maximum settings. This is thanks to the VC heat dissipation sink that covers almost half of the smartphone body, which helps regulate the phone’s temperature.

Camera Performance

Moving on, let’s discuss the camera performance, which I believe is one of the standout features of this device. It’s worth noting that since Leica ended their partnership with Huawei, they have now partnered with Xiaomi. As a result, you can see the Leica branding on this device if you take a closer look. While the phone’s camera is co-engineered with the renowned camera brand, the real question is, how does it perform in terms of overall camera quality?

xiaomi 13 pro review

Fortunately, the camera on this phone did not disappoint. The photos are detailed and have just the right amount of contrast, saturation, and depth. The high dynamic range is one of the best I’ve seen, and there are a variety of creative features available when needed.

The Xiaomi 13 Pro comes with a professional-grade 50MP triple camera system equipped with Leica professional optical lenses, featuring focal lengths ranging from 14mm (ultra-wide angle) to 75mm (telephoto). The main camera incorporates an ultra-large 1″ IMX989 sensor, which we’ve previously seen on the Xiaomi 12S Ultra, responsible for its exceptional low-noise imaging, dynamic range, and light-capturing capabilities, producing vivid images with enhanced contrast and details. If you’re coming from Xiaomi 12S Ultra and you’re not after the latest chipset, there’s no reason for your to jump to the Xiaomi 12 Pro.

There are times that the camera is a hit and miss in low light scenarios. Photos can sometimes be too noisy, and focusing quality – on Portrait Mode – is less doozy.

The 75mm telephoto lens adopts a DSLR-level internal focusing technology that employs a floating lens design, allowing a focal range from 10cm to infinity, perfect for capturing stunning portraits and close-ups. The phone also offers two photographic styles, Leica Authentic Look and Leica Vibrant Look, producing Leica aesthetic images with genuine relationships between light and dark scenes. Users can select between the two options. The device also features an all-new camera UI, Leica watermark, Leica classic shutter sound, and Leica Filters, providing an authentic Leica visual experience. In my opinion, it appears to have more Leica features than Huawei devices.

Xiaomi 13 Pro Review 20

Regarding camera software, the Xiaomi 13 Pro outperforms all other Xiaomi flagships in computational photography capability. It not only enhances photo-capturing speeds but also automatically focuses on moving subjects thanks to the Xiaomi ProFocus. It also supports 10-Bit RAW DNG Camera and Color Profiles created by Adobe, which are compatible with Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Lightroom. As an iPhone 14 Pro Max user, I typically download DNG files with pre-applied filters in Adobe Lightroom to learn and apply various filters and camera settings on my pictures. You can also do this on the Xiaomi 13 Pro.

For video recording, the device features a “Create in Dolby Vision” mode, providing vibrant colors, sharp contrast, and rich details. It also features HyperOIS and 4K Ultra Night Video, ensuring outstanding results in any conditions, day or night. I will have a more though video about its video features on our YouTube channel soon.

Connectivity

Xiaomi 13 Pro is a highly connected device, equipped with the latest technology to ensure that you’re always connected to the world around you. It supports a wide range of network bands, from 2G all the way up to 5G, allowing you to stay connected to the internet and make calls wherever you are. These bands are displayed on the screen so that you can easily check if your carrier is supported.

Xiaomi 13 Pro Review 15

In addition to its cellular capabilities, the Xiaomi 13 Pro also supports the latest Wifi 7 routers. This means that you’ll be able to take advantage of the latest Wifi technology and enjoy faster speeds, better coverage, and lower latency when using your phone on a compatible network. While Wifi 7 routers are not yet widely available, it’s good to know that the Xiaomi 13 Pro is future-proof, ready to take advantage of the latest technology when it becomes available.

Overall, the Xiaomi 13 Pro is a highly connected device, designed to keep you connected to the internet and the world around you. Its support for a wide range of network bands and the latest Wifi technology makes it a great choice for anyone looking for a fast, reliable, and future-proof smartphone.

Battery and Software

Regarding battery performance, my experience with the Xiaomi 13 Pro is that it’s average. It lasts for about 13 hours before reaching 20% battery life, which is not as impressive as what the Galaxy S23 Ultra can achieve. However, it’s important to keep in mind that this phone only has a 4,820mAh battery, which is relatively small compared to other devices on the market. To compensate for this, the phone features ultra-high-speed charging technology that’s compatible with up to 120W. This feature is not enabled out of the box, but you can activate it by enabling Boost Charge Mode. With Boost Charge Mode enabled, you can expect this phone to be fully charged in approximately 20 minutes, which is a significant improvement in charging time.

Xiaomi 13 Pro Review 1

The Xiaomi 13 Pro runs on MIUI 14, which is based on Android 13. This operating system offers a lightning-fast boot-up experience that has been optimized to deliver the best performance possible. In addition to this, MIUI 14 also comes with extra customization features that allow you to tailor your device to your liking. You can choose from a range of new wallpapers, clock widgets, weather widgets, and more. MIUI 14 also features visual changes, such as a redesigned setting page that has narrower line spacing and more recognizable icons. Furthermore, additional optimization updates have been added to MIUI 14, which helps to improve the overall performance of your device. These updates have been specifically designed to enhance the user experience by providing you with a smoother, more efficient, and more enjoyable experience.

Verdict

Xiaomi 13 Pro is not your typical Xiaomi flagship device. It is the perfect blend of style, power, and impressive camera performance. Yes, I’ve got some issues with its cameras, I don’t think they’re something that cannot be fixed with software patches or updates.

The phone’s raw powers – performance and camera – are enough to make it go against the Galaxy S23 Ultra and OnePlus 11. As a phone at the middle of the two aforementioned devices in terms of price point, it stands tall competitively and unarguably Xiaomi’s best phone yet.

9Expert Score
Xiaomi 13 Pro Review: Camera Meets Style

The phone’s raw powers – performance and camera – are enough to make it go against the Galaxy S23 Ultra and OnePlus 11. As a phone at the middle of the two aforementioned devices in terms of price point, it stands tall competitively and unarguably Xiaomi’s best phone yet.

Design and Build Quality
9.5
Performance
9
Camera (Stills)
8.5
Camera (Video)
7.9
Camera (Selfie)
8.5
Battery
8
Pricing
9
Positive
  • Powerful device for gaming
  • Thermal management is excellent
  • Decent Leica-engineered Cameras performance
  • High-speed charging is one of the best in the market
Negatives
  • Portrait camera performance is a hit and miss
  • Sub-par battery performance
  • Photos are sometimes noisy at low light
  • No 8K30

Giancarlo Viterbo is a Filipino Technology Journalist, blogger and Editor of gadgetpilipinas.net, He is also a Geek, Dad and a Husband. He knows a lot about washing the dishes, doing some errands and following instructions from his boss on his day job. Follow him on twitter: @gianviterbo and @gadgetpilipinas.

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