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Here it is, the best, biggest iPhone for the most serious tasks. Or just a top one, which everyone should take. Because it’s Pro Max.

Or is it still not, and a little simpler models, like the iPhone 12 Pro, will be enough?

For five days we tested the iPhone 12 Pro Max and found it has three maximum pluses. And one thing that still makes this smartphone not for everyone. This is not the price (from 109,990 rubles), but something much more prosaic.

There has never been such a big bid for victory in Apple’s smartphone lineup. For some, it may seem too weighty. But for photographers and videographers, it’s time to get in line for pre-orders.

Unboxing the iPhone 12 Pro Max. Look, don’t be shy

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Opened a hefty iPhone 12 Pro Max. Here is the bar!

Publication from iPhones.ru (@iphones_ru)

We had Silver and Pacific Blue.

Pasha Teleshevsky filmed an unpacking video, for which many thanks to him. By the way, subscribe to our Instagram, and also to the Telegram channel – there we will post photos from the review, which did not have enough space in the material.

Big iPhone, long and low box. It contains a Lightning to USB-C cable, a paperclip, an Apple sticker, warranty information, and a short booklet about the initial setup.

Surprised? Of course not, because everyone, young and old, knows: there is no more charging or headphones in the kit. Ecology and all.

Taking this opportunity, I advise you to get at least one 20-watt Apple charger with a USB-C port. From it, MagSafe will work at full capacity, and the iPhone itself will charge as quickly as possible. Yes, and the economy will not be superfluous. Old blocks, especially 5-watt ones, it’s time to dispose of or distribute to relatives.

Comparison of the size of the iPhone 12 Pro Max and other iPhones. How large?

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We also did this in a short video format. We compare the iPhone 12 Pro Max with the iPhone 12 Pro, iPhone XR (it is like the iPhone 11) and iPhone SE 2nd generation – that is, with the very iPhones that Apple officially left on sale for the next year.

Most importantly: the iPhone 12 Pro Max is gigantic and not shy about it


Well, it’s big. And it’s out of hand! iPhone 12 Pro Max left, iPhone 12 Pro right

Otherwise, you can’t say. This iPhone huge, regardless of your hands, expectations or experience with smartphones in general. I will say more: it is so big that it is able to divide the camp of potential buyers only by its size.

The first acquaintance with him is like a scene from Harry Potter about the hat that sorts wizards into houses. You take it out of the box (or pick it up in the store) and after only 5 seconds you understand what’s next. Either this YES, I TAKE; or still NO, I AM “NORMAL”.

For reference, before that I used the iPhone 11 Pro Max for a little over a year. The one in the case and with protective glass turned out to be smaller than the new model without accessories at all.


iPhone 11 Pro Max on the left, iPhone 12 Pro Max on the right.

In the editorial office, the opinion was not equally divided: almost everyone leaned towards the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro. Some generally sit and wait for mini. Of the twelve people I showed the new Pro Max to, only three immediately said “the fire”. And after all, we haven’t even put a cover on it yet, except for the MagSafe cardholder from Apple.

Such a polar reaction was to be expected. The dimensions of previous large iPhones were more or less the same as the Plus series of six years ago, and therefore seemed quite familiar. Now that “standard” is in the past.

Compare dimensions iPhone 12 Pro Max in numbers:

○ iPhone 6 Plus: 158.1mm long, 77.8mm wide, 7.1mm thick
○ iPhone Xs Max: 157.5mm, 77.4mm, 7.7mm
○ iPhone 11 Pro Max: 158mm, 77.8mm, 8.1mm
○ iPhone 12 Pro: 146.7mm, 71.5mm, 7.4mm

● iPhone 12 Pro Max: 160.8mm, 78.1mm, 7.4mm

With flat glass and a new shape, body is thinner. The rest is more. Apple is not at all shy about the gigantic size of the iPhone 12 Pro Max. What, according to the hints of the official website (“if you like more”), that according to the very line of devices (mini!) It is clear: the company knows that this giant smartphone is far from being for everyone.


Camera module – be healthy. In 2020, this is how it is.

A question for you personally. Do you want a smartphone of maximum physical dimensions and are you ready to accept the peculiarities of its use? Because there are exactly as many pluses in this plane as there are minuses. For an unprepared person, 12 Pro Max may not seem like a smartphone at all, but rather like this transitional gadget between smartphone and tablet.

I’ll answer my own questions for now. Yes, I wanted an iPhone a little larger than the previous Max for the sake of a larger screen – and I got it, signed it. The desire is satisfied, and now it is obvious: it is simply not worth doing it even more, it will be too much.


On the on-screen keyboard, you can’t type much with one hand. There are options, such as shifting it to the side, but then the smartphone is not very convenient to hold.

Using the iPhone 12 Pro Max for the first few days was really unusual. I constantly caught myself subconsciously reaching into my pockets for the familiar 11 Pro Max or the much more compact 12 Pro.

Why is that? It’s not so much the lack of a cover and the fear of dropping the device, but the combination of a new shape and, although not changed, but otherwise still significant weight.

For example, the iPhone 12 Pro Max slides down more briskly in the palm of your hand if you grip it with the same force as you could hold the iPhone 11 Pro Max until recently. It’s about flat steel edges. They are less ergonomic and less often rest against the palm over the entire area. With the 12 Pro, this is not the case, because it is 40 grams lighter, and gravity is a little more favorable to it.


Never put your iPhones like that. Life teaches me nothing

By the way, here how much does 12 pro max weigh In comparison with others:

○ iPhone 6 Plus: 172 grams
● iPhone Xs Max: 208 grams
● iPhone 11 Pro Max: 226 grams
○ iPhone 12 Pro: 187 grams

● iPhone 12 Pro Max: 226 grams

I have small hands, but I adapted faster to the 11 Pro Max. Fortunately, the old habits of one-handed use in emergency situations have not failed yet – I successfully juggle the iPhone in my palm for access to opposite corners of the screen, just a little slower and more careful not to slip out.

For those with medium-sized or smaller hands, I would suggest wearing a case for peace of mind. Hand grip will be better. Only the size will increase. But what can you do.


It seems like you look from the side – and nothing like that, compact. And the hand is in shock for the first time.

In general, I advise those wishing to take Max to accept the fact in advance. it VERY. BIG. Smartphone. Dot. I see complaining about the size of the iPhone 12 Pro Max as a pointless exercise – by taking it, you invisibly subscribed to the statement that size matters.

Size in case of iPhone 12 Pro Max has three positive values, each of which promises the owner almost undeniable advantages on top of those already available in the iPhone 12 line, and specifically the iPhone 12 Pro. There are many!


iPhone 12 Pro Max performance tests: Geekbench 5 and Antutu. There are slightly more points everywhere than the iPhone 12 Pro.

For example, 6 GB of RAM and a powerful processor are still pleasing. A14 Bionic, the leader in the world of mobile devices. The rear frosted glass not only looks beautiful, but also does not scratch at all, and also does not produce fingerprints. I support MagSafe as an idea, this is a reserve for a cable-free future.

The very shape of the body as a whole, especially visually, I like more than the previous one. Regardless of the size and model, the iPhone 12 turned out to be very beautiful. I see in advance how, after a couple of years, yesterday’s critics warmly recall its design in the comments …

The cons are similar too. controversial moment with scratches on the steel frame similarly remains relevant in the iPhone 12 Pro Max – in just a few days I wove a “web” on the frame of a silver model without a single idea how this could happen. And the glass scratches just like before. But it will break less often thanks to the layer Ceramic Shield.

It turns out that we have already talked about many features of the 12 Pro Max in the reviews of “regular” models. In order not to repeat myself here, I ask you to read the two previous reviews (mini is on the way!):

◈ iPhone 12 review Pro. Brilliantly powerful for those in the know

◈ iPhone 12 review. Top-notch for everyone

Next, I will focus on the key differences between the iPhone 12 Pro Max and the iPhone 12 Pro. They will go in my personal order of importance, which may not match yours.

1. Camera. The best in iPhones ever, but no offense to the owner of the 12 Pro


There is something beautiful about these three cameras. Or did I stare at them too long while filming?

It’s hard not to notice that the camera module in the iPhone 12 Pro Max is downright gigantic. It’s not just bigger than the iPhone 12 Pro or iPhone 12, it’s taller, thicker and wider in every way than the iPhone 11 Pro Max.

That the metal rings around the lenses, that the glass framing them rise significantly higher above the rear panel. And so much so that the iPhone does like this, if you put it on the table and tap on the right side (the 11 Pro Max does not have this):

Nikita Goryainov iPhone 12 Pro Max – Edge Wobble On Table

Over the past few years, camera modules in smartphones have steadily increased in size, so there is nothing particularly surprising here. If it bothers you, put on a cover, it will fix everything.

The camera module in the 12 Pro Max is so big because it has a few significant differences.:

◎ wide-angle camera sensor is enlarged
◎ telephoto lens changed: 65mm instead of 50mm
◎ A new wide camera stabilization mechanism has been installed – Sensor Shift

Yes, it still has LiDAR, whose capabilities I described in detail earlier in the iPhone 12 Pro review. Here I’ll tell you more about the distinctive features of the 12 Pro Max camera.

Larger wide-angle camera sensor: 87% more light


The glass of the modules now sticks out much more. And the rings around them are thicker.

The sensor here is now large even by the standards of the best achievements of mobile cameras: the size of each pixel of the matrix increased from 1.4 micrometer to 1.7 micrometer. And the larger the pixels of the matrix, the more accurately they read the brightness and color of the rays of light entering the camera.

The result is appropriate. The wide-angle camera of the iPhone 12 Pro Max is theoretically (according to Apple) on 87% captures light better than before, the difference in the brightness of its sources and their shades. The maximum ISO has risen significantly:

▻ iPhone 11 Pro Max: 3072
▻ iPhone 12 Pro: 5808
► iPhone 12 Pro Max: 7616


The issuance of an excellent Halide program by camera parameters.


In difficult conditions, the iPhone 12 Pro is worse at catching focus than the iPhone 12 Pro Max. How many details in the face, on clothes, even the eyes turned out to be more expressive.

The iPhone 12 Pro Max is able to capture more detail from shadows and be less afraid of the dark overall.

This is noticeable even before pressing the “shutter”: for example, when activating Night mode The iPhone 12 Pro Max always asks for a shorter exposure time than the 12 Pro, up to two times.

Enlarging the sensor gives the greatest results when shooting video, a direction where Apple has simply unconditionally been the leader for many years in a row. He, along with innovations in the quality of the HDR stream (as in 12 Pro, there is Dolby Vision) together with improved stabilization, make the iPhone 12 Pro Max a serious tool for advanced videography and even professional cinematography.

Telephoto lens is now 2.5x, albeit with a smaller aperture


All cameras now have Deep Fusion. Helps improve photo clarity by post-processing data from all lenses at the same time.

I love the telephoto lens on my iPhone and use it all the time. I know by heart what the photo will be like if you press the cherished button 2x. Therefore, to the new 2.5x zoombranded specifically for the 12 Pro Max model, I’m still getting used to it.

It would seem that just some “five tenths”! But in percentage terms, the picture is different. The frame in this mode is now removed with an approximation of 25% more than before. That is, you need to stand at a greater distance from the object, especially if you shoot macro. The focal length has changed accordingly: it was 50 mm, it became 65 mm.

Thanks to him, portraits are now especially expressive. Perhaps, it seems to me, but even bokeh (without mode Portraitnamely natural) has become more pleasing to the eye.


Compare the degree of zoom increase in cameras – a decent run!

Some enthusiasts were upset aperture drop from ƒ/2.0 to ƒ/2.2. This moment affects the photo specifically of the “telephoto” minimally, it just touches something else. The smart lens system, which I talked about in a huge review of the iPhone 11 cameras, has not changed in the iPhone 12 Pro and Max: in low light conditions, the smartphone deactivates the “telephoto” and switches to a commensurate crop from the main, wide-angle camera.

Theoretically, this is bad: details are lost, there is more digital noise from the same digital zoom. But at the same time, something interesting happens…

Watch your hands. Telephoto aperture has dropped, so the iPhone 12 Pro Max uses a wide-angle camera crop more often than the 11 Pro Max. But the wide-angle camera has become much better in terms of capturing light and details due to the increase in sensor.

At the output we get such a disadvantage and advantage parity, where I still cannot reliably demonstrate the smaller aperture of the new “telephoto” in alternate shooting on the past and current Max. I decided that a little later I would call for this professional photographer.

Sensor Shift stabilization helps the main camera


I wonder if Apple will shrink the camera block one day, or if they keep growing.

The large camera size of the iPhone 12 Pro Max, among other things, is due to the new wide-angle camera stabilization system. Apple calls her Sensor Shiftand this principle has migrated to the top iPhone from the best professional cameras.

Smartphones typically use a combination of optical (OIS) and digital stabilization. OIS – this is the displacement of the lens of the lens along the axis, leveling the shaking. The presence of OIS in 2020 is considered a significant advantage of flagship gadget cameras.


The effective work of the improved wide-angle camera of the iPhone 12 Pro Max is immediately noticeable: on the iPhone 12 Pro, the foliage in the background is smeared, and there are fewer details.

In iPhone 12 Pro Max instead of a lens the entire camera matrix is ​​stabilized. A large “motor” is responsible for this, moving up to 5 thousand times per second.

The large motor moves more freely, more accurately and faster than OIS systems, which improves stabilization efficiency. This is most noticeable when shooting video, as well as in low-light conditions, where even microscopic outstanding shifts due to high shutter speeds negatively affect the clarity of the frame.


The cathedral, and especially its entire upper part, turned out to be much more detailed on the iPhone 12 Pro Max.


The comments asked what kind of place this is. The answer is: Japanese-style festival venue, Kurkino district, Moscow. Access is now limited!


Smart HDR 3 in the iPhone 12 (and Pro Max too) recognizes which areas of the photo to brighten. He almost always makes architecture as detailed as possible and reduces the intensity of shadows.


The photo on the iPhone 12 Pro Max turned out clearer, there are more details, and there is less “fog” in the background.

You will find more examples, camera comparisons of the iPhone 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max, including crops, in a separate article – a prequel to the future big camera review:

? Camera comparison between iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max. What is the difference?

Personally, I have two conclusions about the iPhone 12 Pro Max camera so far. Both seem to be true in their own way and do not contradict each other.

The first: the camera is great and definitely occupies a place in the very “top” of the flagships of mobile photography. An increase in the matrix by 40% in half of the cases gives a visible advantage in conditions of not only insufficient lighting, but also simply shooting indoors, in the morning, in the evening, and even more so at night.

Pictures with any of the three lenses are much more likely to come out sharp on the first try, and Sensor Shift works wonders for any handheld and, say, evening portraits. Computational Night mode turns on not only less often and with a shorter recommended shutter speed, but it is far from always mandatory. Now you can often do without it and get a natural photo that is impossible without software magic on any other iPhone models.

Second: the new camera module in 12 Pro Max in many ordinary scenarios (and especially during the day) does not provide such critical advantages that owners of the iPhone 12 Pro or iPhone 12 can feel left out.

The cameras of these two smartphones do not seem to be worse and are still extremely good even in light of the capabilities of the new Max. Especially if you have previously used iPhone Xs and older models.

Most of those who do not need MAXan extremely advanced camera, I would advise you to look at the top iPhone in terms of its other advantages and try them on yourself first. It can easily be that the size does not suit you, and you can safely take 12 or 12 Pro.

There are also third opinionso far only theoretical. At the end of the year, Apple promises to launch the RAW feature for the entire 12 Pro line. The feature is called Apple ProRAW and will allow you to take the maximum data from each picture, as it should be, in fact, shooting in RAW format.

And then we may have an additional argument in favor of the iPhone 12 Pro Max. The larger sensor and improved stabilization should statistically capture more data each frame. Post-processing such shots will allow you to extract better final results from such a “chubby” camera than on a “simple” 12 Pro. Again, this is just a guess, and we need to wait for the release of the function.

2. The battery decides. 24 hours is not the limit


Charged my 12 Pro Max once in 5 days. Is it possible only with max.

Many choose iPhone Plus and Max series solely for the sake of longer battery life. For me, this is a parameter of critical importance, because I use smartphones as actively as possible. I must say right away that the 12 Pro Max definitely pleased me in this regard.

The iPhone 12 Pro Max has a battery installed on 3687 mAh. This is almost 300 mAh less than the iPhone 11 Pro Max (3969 mAh). If you think about it, the difference is not very big – in the ratio, the new model has lost less than 8 percent of its former capacity. The story is familiar, the same thing happened with the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro.

Having been using the 12 Pro for the last two weeks, I can safely praise it for its battery life. That’s almost always a whole day of confident use, often more. The point is the energy efficiency and power of the A14 Bionic processor, each core of which is as much as 25% faster than those in the A13 Bionic and 40% faster than the A12 from the iPhone Xs.

High single-core performance allows the smartphone to work less hard when performing simple tasks, thus extending the average battery life.

But if my iPhone 12 Pro lives quietly until the end of the working day, then iPhone 12 Pro Max works in a similar mode all 24 hours. That is, the whole day and half of the next, and if desired, and the battery saving mode by 30% or less – two full days without any special restrictions.


Two different iPhone 12 Pro Max, two different use cases. The second graph is not particularly indicative, but the first …

Here’s another example: in five days of testing, I charged the iPhone 12 Pro Max only once. The same term, but 12 Pro – twice. iPhone X – three times, and iPhone SE second generation – daily.

If you actively shoot video in 4K 60 FPS HDR, play a lot of demanding games like Genshin Impact or Call Of Duty Mobile at maximum settings, or keep the display brightness as high as possible with frequent use of your smartphone, the iPhone 12 Pro Max will last approximately 6-9 hours of active screen.

There are no revelations here, similar results are familiar to me from the iPhone 11 Pro Max. The main thing is that it’s real a lot of for a device with such a large display and powerful processor.

The usual rhythm of using the iPhone 12 Pro Max is confident one and a half to two days without charging. You can rely on such a result and therefore write down the second line in the reasons to fall in love with the largest iPhone in the history of Apple.

3. The display is very large, which is great


In terms of the size of the Pro Max, there is hardly much further to strive for. So if the display is increased in the coming years, then first of all by reducing the frame.

The main reason for the growth of the iPhone 12 Pro Max in breadth and height is the increase in the screen Super Retina XDR.

The diagonal is now 6.7 inches, 0.2 inches larger than the iPhone 11 Pro Max and Xs Max. Black frames of the same thickness, or I do not see the difference (yes, I was seriously looking for it).

The display resolution has increased following the diagonal. On 11 Pro Max it was 2688 by 1242 pixels. now this 2778 by 1284 pixels at the former, “proprietary” density of 458 pixels per inch. More than 3 million pixels in total, which is the maximum in an iPhone to date.


Bottom iPhone 11 Pro Max, top iPhone 12 Pro Max. The brightness decreased by 11 automatically, in reality there is no difference in it.

The brightness hasn’t changed, it’s still up to 800 cd/m² in normal mode. And viewing HDR content, such as YouTube videos and films from Apple TV +, is available with a maximum brightness of 1200 cd / m², as in the iPhone 11 Pro. Only now you can notice it more easily by simply turning on the video mode in camera. The screen immediately lights up almost twice as strong – iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max already in the viewfinder show how your future HDR video with Dolby Vision and 4K will look like.

Extended color space P3 and true tone in place. The color rendition has not changed, the contrast too, and it was not required: OLED screens in the iPhone have been pleasing for years. 3D Touch no and will not.


iPhone 11 Pro Max (6.5 inches) on the left, iPhone 12 Pro Max (6.7 inches) on the right.


With the iPhone 12 Pro Max, you get at least a few bonus lines across many iOS apps. But the desktop holds as many icons as before.

Logical question: what do these 0.2 inches of diagonal give, especially after 11 Pro Max? Either this is the power of persuasion, or I notice the difference all five days without stopping. I definitely like it.

From any video, in any familiar game, and even just in some menu Settings, is reflected a few more lines of text. In movies or games, the details are a little easier to distinguish. Control in games from the screen is easier, fingers and palms block the screen less.

After 12 Pro Max, it happens that the 11 Pro Max seems somehow … small, and its display too. Rectangular frames help with this, reducing the visual perception of the case.


Genshin Impact loads any smartphone at 100%, but 12 Pro Max copes with the game even at “maximum speed” without problems.

Combined with excellent image quality, OLED’s high contrast and good brightness margins, the larger display brings satisfaction to those who missed it before. Now if it is increased, then only due to the framework. I think in a year or two that’s exactly what we’ll see.

The physical increase in the diagonal allows you to squeeze even more information out of the resolution of the iPhone without losing readability. To do this, you can reduce the text scale in iOS: SettingsScreen and BrightnessText size. The method will not work in all applications. But in the system itself and the built-in software, like Mailthe effect will be significant.

Who should take the iPhone 12 Pro Max? And is it necessary


iPhone 12 Pro on the left, iPhone 12 Pro Max on the right.

There is a certain proportion of those who will not ask such a question at all. Released the top-end iPhone? Everything, bought in the maximum configuration. And that’s okay. In the coming 2021, I wish each of you to live like this.

I still stick with my initial conclusion from the iPhone 12 Pro review: purely from a practical point of view, the regular iPhone 12 is a great gadget, and for the vast majority it will be enough with a huge margin.

iPhone 12 Pro Max, however, will always be bigger and better. The gigantic screen, the still long-lasting battery and the now exclusively upgraded camera make this a smartphone for both professional photo and video shooters and just people who demand the most from the most personal item in the life of a modern person.

It may seem that after, say, the iPhone 11 Pro Max or even the Xs Max, it makes sense to move only on 12 Pro Max. This is not entirely true. A noticeable increase in screen sizes in the iPhone 12 and 12 Pro, as well as its significant upgrade in the “basic” line (LCD, for now!) Is a serious argument for considering returning to a more compact version. I recommend holding them all in stores, since the sale of the entire line will begin just about.

But! We all strive for the best, right? And if you…

▸ ? need the best camera ever in iPhone
▸ ? I want to maximum battery life
▸ ? required largest display

…and you not scares:

▹ very large smartphone size even without a case
▹ understanding that with a case it will become yet more
▹ the fact that even the “regular” iPhone 12 is not much worse

– then you need to take the iPhone 12 Pro Max: from 109 990 rubles. He, like the iPhone 12 Pro, comes in the “base” with 128 GB of memory, which pleases.

Flowers are simple. Again number one in my recommendations new color “Pacific Blue”: just great for everyone and everyone, IMHO better than last year’s dark green. Carbonic black is second.

Silver, as in most of the photos in the article, it will suit those who aspire to the Apple classics and the noble color of steel. There will be scratches, but what can you do. But it shimmers brightly, especially the frame! BUT gold…well, guys, this is gold. There will always be those who wish, but I personally don’t like the shade and 11 Pro seems to be more successful.

In 2020, the iPhone 12 proves: size matters. But what exactly big or small, it’s up to you to decide. The main thing is that no matter what choice you make, top-end hardware, iOS 14 with all the innovations, an awesome screen and an excellent camera will be waiting everywhere. There would always be such a large selection without big compromises.

PS Who scrolled to the end and did not read – here you just all photos from the review:

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