If it’s time to start thinking about upgrading your iPhone, look no further than the iPhone 12 lineup. This is the first generation to have 4 different models to choose from. But don’t worry — this article is here to help you compare iPhone 12 vs iPhone 12 Pro and other models and decide which one will work the best for you. So, keep reading!
Before you upgrade to iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Pro, or iPhone 12 Mini
If you do decide to upgrade to the iPhone 12 line, you might opt for one of the models with less storage to save a little money. If that’s the case, you’re definitely going to want to be careful about the data you’re transferring from your old phone. Don’t just dump duplicate pictures or photos that are wasting your storage space.
Thankfully, our app Gemini Photos can help you quickly get rid of unwanted pictures and clean up the rest of your photo library. You can download Gemini Photos from the App Store. Once you open it and let it scan your pictures, follow these steps to remove your duplicates:
- With Gemini Photos open, Tap the Duplicates tab.
- Select a set of duplicates.
- Choose the copies you want to delete, then tap the X to close out of the group.
- At the bottom, tap Delete [x] Duplicates.
- You can then tap Your Library to review other categories like Similar, Notes, and Blurred.
After you’ve finished cleaning up with Gemini Photos, you might notice that the deleted pictures are still taking up storage on your iPhone. That’s because they automatically remain in your Recently Deleted album for 30 days just in case you accidentally delete a pic or video. But if you’re ready to free up that space now, just open the Photos app and navigate to Albums > Recently Deleted > Select > Delete All.
Understanding the differences between iPhone 12 models
As mentioned earlier, the iPhone 12 lineup is the first to introduce four different models. So, before you jump into the comparison below, it’s helpful to know each model and understand how they relate to each other. Here’s a quick breakdown:
- iPhone 12: The baseline model
- iPhone 12 Mini: The smallest model
- iPhone 12 Pro: The faster, better-performing iPhone 12 model
- iPhone 12 Pro Max: The biggest and most powerful iPhone 12 model
iPhone 12 vs 12 Pro vs Pro Max vs Mini: Let’s compare
With so many options in the iPhone 12 lineup, it’s hard to know just where to start. But for the sake of this article, you’ll only read about the features that will help elevate your iPhone photography.
iPhone 12 Camera Review
At first glance, the cameras on the iPhone 12 don’t look much different from previous iPhones. The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Mini feature Wide and Ultra Wide lenses, while iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max include those lenses, plus a third Telephoto lens.
The biggest improvements made on the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max cameras are features like Night mode portraits and Apple ProRAW.
Night mode portraits bring the benefits of long-exposure shots to your portrait photos, which lets you still get that shallow depth-of-field (or bokeh) while in low-light conditions. Meanwhile, Apple ProRaw is a new file type that allows you to capture your pictures in RAW format but still compresses them so you don’t have massive file sizes.
There is one notable difference between the two Pro models. iPhone 12 Pro Max is better suited for stabilizing your photos and videos thanks to sensor-shift optical image stabilization, whereas iPhone 12 Pro has a dual optical image stabilization similar.
Here’s a table to quickly compare some of the new camera features on each of the iPhone 12 models:
|iPhone 12 Mini||iPhone 12||iPhone 12 Pro||iPhone 12 Pro Max|
|Ultra Wide – ƒ/2.4 Wide – ƒ/1.6||Ultra Wide – ƒ/2.4 Wide – ƒ/1.6||Ultra Wide – ƒ/2.4 Wide – ƒ/1.6 Telephoto – ƒ/2.0||Ultra Wide – ƒ/2.4 Wide – ƒ/1.6 Telephoto – ƒ/2.2|
|–||–||Night mode portraits||Night mode portraits|
|–||–||Apple ProRAW||Apple ProRAW|
|Optical image stabilization||Optical image stabilization||Dual optical image stabilization||Sensor-shift optical image stabilization|
|Smart HDR 3||Smart HDR 3||Smart HDR 3||Smart HDR 3|
iPhone 12 Display
The iPhone 12 lineup is the first iPhone line in which every model has a Super Retina XDR OLED display. In previous generations, this top-of-the-line display was only available on Pro models. But aside from minor differences in brightness levels, the displays are nearly identical. The biggest variation is in the size of the screen, and here’s how they stack up:
- iPhone 12 Mini: 5.4 inches
- iPhone 12: 6.1 inches
- iPhone 12 Pro: 6.1 inches
- iPhone 12 Pro Max: 6.7 inches
iPhone 12 storage capacity
While storage doesn’t directly impact the quality of your pictures, if you don’t have enough space on your phone, you won’t be able to take photos at all. So, unless you don’t mind continually offloading your pictures and videos, storage capacity is an important feature to consider. iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max both have generous storage options, but non-Pro models are on the smaller side:
- iPhone 12 Mini: 64/128/256 GB
- iPhone 12: 64/128/256 GB
- iPhone 12 Pro: 128/256/512 GB
- iPhone 12 Pro Max: 128/256/512 GB
Battery life and performance
Battery life and charging are two areas that were improved with the iPhone 12 lineup. Starting with charging, all four models support Apple’s new MagSafe charger, which is a better, faster, more secure wireless charging solution. This also works with MagSafe supported cases, so you don’t have to worry about trying to remove your case off every time you want to charge your phone. Plus, fast charging allows you to charge your phone’s battery up to 50% in about 30 minutes.
Another strong point the iPhone 12 lineup boasts is incredible battery life. This varies by model, but here’s a quick look at how long each battery will last, measured by consistent video playback:
- iPhone 12 Mini: Up to 15 hours
- iPhone 12: Up to 17 hours
- iPhone 12 Pro: Up to 17 hours
- iPhone 12 Pro Max: Up to 20 hours
iPhone 12 Prices
You’ve read about all the great features available in each model — now comes the moment of truth. How much will each model cost you? Here’s a look at the starting prices for the entire iPhone 12 lineup:
- iPhone 12 Mini price starts from: $699
- iPhone 12 price starts from: $799
- iPhone 12 Pro price is: $999
- iPhone 12 Pro Max price starts from: $1099
A look at that list might make cause you to wonder why iPhone 12 is so much cheaper than iPhone 12 Pro. After all, they’re the same size, have the same screen, and contain the same A14 Bionic processor. So why does iPhone 12 cost $200 less? Well, it’s that rear camera. The extra Telephoto lens results in a higher-quality camera.
So which iPhone 12 is best for photography?
Hands down, the best model from the iPhone 12 lineup for photography is iPhone 12 Pro Max. Not only does it have the 3 lenses and the sensor-shift optical image stabilization, but it also features the biggest screen, the largest storage options, and the longest-lasting battery.
The only con to iPhone 12 Pro Max is its size. This phone is massive — which wouldn’t be an issue if you were buying it as a camera, but chances are, you’re buying it primarily as a phone. If possible, you may want to test out this phone before you commit to its size.
All four models in the iPhone 12 lineup are incredible in their own way. And they all have incredible cameras with software that only enhances the experience and helps capture stunning pictures. Whether you decide you like the portability and the ease of use of iPhone 12 Mini or you’re ready to harness all the power of iPhone 12 Pro Max, you won’t be disappointed with any model from this great lineup. And if you’re also considering an older iPhone, check out the iPhone XR vs XS vs XS Max comparison we did earlier.