iPhone 15 Pro Max a Phone a lot of people have been waiting for. what has Apple improved on this time around, is it worth upgrading to?
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There are actually some interesting changes compared to last year, First Apple has finally changed from a lightning port and a cable to USB-C, the standard you find on pretty much all other mobile devices. Second, say goodbye to dongles and adaptors unless you want to plug in headphones.
The Phone also features a new programmable action key evolved from the silencer hardware button of course, the iPhone 15 Pro Max packs a new more powerful chipset and its improved main camera and new five times periscope telephoto zoom are very welcome changes.
iPhone 15 Pro Max: Design
Let’s talk about the design, with a flat back made of matte glass and triple circle camera bump the looks are quite similar to before, but there are a couple of changes here compared to last year. First off, the iPhone 151 Pro max is 20g lighter than the previous model plus you get a rounded chamfer where the back meets the frame which lends a more natural hand feel.
The main difference is that the frame is now made of titanium instead of stainless steel. This makes it stronger and lighter, but even though titanium is a more high-quality material, it doesn’t feel as fancy as you might expect. It actually feels just like the aluminum you get on the cheaper iPhone 15 models, and we sort of miss the cold weightless provided by a steel frame. On top of that
even though you might imagine that a titanium build would be more durable, based on Drop and Ben’s test online the iPhone 15 Pro max back is actually a lot easier to break than the previous model for whatever reason. At least you can breathe easily around water the iPhone 15 Pro Max again brings IP68-rated protection against dust and water submersion.
iPhone 15 Pro Max: Display
The display of the iPhone 15 Pro Max feels lifted straight from last year’s model, a 6.7-inch Super Retina XDR OLED with a 120hz refresh rate and protected by ceramic shield glass.
The resolution comes out to a sharp 460 PPI and you get great contrast as well as very accurate colors, there’s support for both HDR 10 video and Dolby Vision and something interesting is that the HDR playback is quite flexible the HDR can be applied only to the part of the screen that has the video playing.
Just like last year, you get the pill-shaped screen cutout for the selfie cam and the 3D TF scanner for face unlock, and the cutout brings its dynamic island functionality as well with a black bar extending beyond the cutout to display relevant info and lets you easily call up certain apps from the background.
The display max brightness is impressive, it’s nearly 850 nits of maximum brightness with the manual slider and this boosted to almost 1,800 nits in auto mode when presented with bright light. Promotion is what Apple calls its Dynamic 120 Hz refresh rate and it’s meant to provide silky smooth swiping and scrolling.
iPhone 15 Pro Max: Speakers
when it comes to the speakers the iPhone 15 Pro Max brings what seems like the same system we saw in last year’s model, the stereo speakers have very good loudness and an impressively rich sound output across the board from bass to vocals and treble.
iPhone 15 Pro Max: Face ID & Storage
Biometrics are handled through Apple’s face ID which is quite secure thanks to the TOF camera on the front, it’s as fast and reliable as ever and the iPhone 15 can come with 256 or 512 gigs of storage on board or a whole terabyte and while that’s not expandable through MicroSD, you can connect an external drive through USB.
iPhone 15 Pro Max: IOS 17
The interface of the new iPhone generation is IOS 17, it brings the same experience as the previous version with just a few new features sprinkled in. Just as before the lock screen houses your notifications and shortcuts for the flashlights and camera it can also behave as an always-on display.
Something new is the optional standby mode which is always on display in the landscape orientation and can activate while the phone is charging, there is plenty of support for the widgets and now you even get interactive widgets you can tap on them and change things without even going into the app.
There is also a new customizable call screen which Apple calls contact posters, for each contact you have plenty of options for how they appear including photos, emojis and text. Some other new features in IOS 17 include password sharing with friends offline maps and live voicemail, the silencer key has become the new action key which triggers
When you press and hold it, you can choose from some preset actions or set your own preferred action, which is handy. However, it might be even more useful if the key were located lower, as it’s currently placed in a somewhat hard-to-reach spot up high, where the mute button used to be.
iPhone 15 Pro Max: USB-C
The phone itself supports USB 3 the cable that comes in the box actually supports USB 2 speeds, there’s a Type C ALT mode that allows you to output the phone screen to an external monitor you can even output video in 4k at 60 FPS with a proper adapter since the aspect ratio matches the phone though you’ll get letterboxing and black bar for most content including YouTube.
However, some specific apps like Netflix can support full-screen output, there’s also support for USB-C host mode which allows you to connect things like a mouse or keyboard to the iPhone through the port and even record 4K video directly to external storage.
iPhone 15 Pro Max: A17 Pro
Let’s talk about the chipset Apple’s new A17 Pro, they’ve dropped the bionic label for this one. The chipset GPU features Hardware accelerated ray tracing which is supposedly four times faster than the software-based ray tracing of last year’s A16 bionic chip.
We see this in graphics benchmarks in a specific ray tracing test the improvement is a massive 60%, otherwise when it comes to overall CPU and GPU performance the difference from last year is a modest 10% improvement still this makes the iPhone 15 Pro Max one of the most powerful smartphones out there and Apple believes in its capabilities lining up popular console grade game titles for release on IOS.
It’s not all about raw power though sustained performance and thermal management are just as important, in the prolonged CPU stress test the iPhone throttled gradually up to 78% which is decent it could be better though last year’s Pro Max maintained much higher Max performance in the same test,
It seems that something about the software could be affecting it because after updating the IOS 17 the iPhone 14 Pro Max could only maintain 76% of its max performance compared to 92% previously but even despite all that we didn’t encounter any drops or hiccups when gaming and we never experienced the phone becoming unbearably hot either even after rigorous testing.
iPhone 15 Pro Max: Battery
The iPhone 15 Pro Max has a 4,441 mAh battery, which is slightly larger than the 4,323 mAh battery in the 14 Pro Max. With it the iPhone 15 Pro Max scored a great total endurance rating of 118 hours almost the same as the 121 hours of last year’s model, the iPhone doesn’t come with a charger in the box as expected with an Apple 20W power adapter we
were able to charge the 15 Pro Max from 0 to 46% in half an hour nothing exciting and about the same as last year, there’s also support for wireless charging and Mag safe support for those magnetized wireless chargers.
iPhone 15 Pro Max: Camera
Let’s get into cameras on the back is a 48MP main Cam a 12MP 5 times telephoto Cam a 12MP ultrawide Cam and a 3D TOF LiDAR scanner, the main camera has a bigger sensor this year and it bends pixels to produce photos but it actually outputs 24MP photos by default thanks to some computational improvements.
In contrast most 48MP smartphone cameras including the one on last year’s model bend pixel 4 into one and produce 12MP photos, during the day the default photos from the main camera are quite good with great contrast no Noice and wide enough dynamic range the reedition is typically Apple, the colors are naturally looking perhaps even a bit boring
And there’s some extra sharpening in fine details when you look up closely, you can also take 12MP photos and when you compare them the 24MP has more details particularly in stationary objects so taking photos in 24MP makes sense especially since the file size isn’t that much bigger up to about 1/2 MBs extra per shot.
Still, the phone will take 12MP photos when you’re capturing night mode, live photos, portraits, Macro or flash photos, the main cam also allows you to shoot in 28mm and 35mm focal lengths that is 1.2 times and 1.5 times zoom the zoom is done by cropping from the large sensor and you can even make either of these modes your default for the main Cam, then we get to two times zoom which is solid these photos always comes out in 12MP and you get enough detail.
The other properties match the regular photos, portraits come from the main Cam and are taken at two times zoom by default these have impressive subject separation the sharpness and detail could be better.
In low light scenes, you’ll most often get Apple’s night mode processing kicking in automatically these are punchy and warm with abundant detail great sharpness and no noise, you can brighten up skies and shadows and high contrast overall.
The only way to get 24MP photos at night is to disable the night mode these are more realistic looking with a cooler tone darker overall exposure and darker and less contrasty shadows.
iPhone 15 Pro Max: Video
iPhone 15 Pro Max can record video in up to 4K at 60 FPS with all of its cameras, the 4K video quality from the main Cam is outstanding with no Noice wide Dynamic Range and accurate colors there’s abundant detail and the processing i pretty well balanced. And no matter which camera you’re shooting with the so-called Cinematic video stabilization is easily class-leading.
The low light video from the main camera is very good with enough detail low noise and good exposure, the Dynamic Range is realistic and color saturation is great.
5x Zoom Camera
The Five Times Telephoto camera is the first Periscope zoom in an iPhone and a highlight of this year’s camera setup, the camera features an innovative Tetraprism periscope design it also has advanced Optical stabilization where both the Lens and sensor move to stabilize the image.
The Five Times zoom photos are very good with plenty of detail and low Noice and Balan sharpness the rest of the properties are a match to what the main camera offers, great Contrast, realistic Dynamic Range and accurate colors. In low light with auto night mode the zoomed photos from the Telephoto Cam are outstanding they have plenty of detail and excellent sharpness, low noise and Contrast the Dynamic Range is good too.
Opting out of the night mode most often results in a five times digital zoom from the main Camera. 4K videos from the Telephoto Cam are great but the quality is a bit lower than the main Cams.
Move on to the ultra-wide camera its photos are great for this sort of camera with a lot of detail good dynamic range impressive sharpness and in the corners of the image, fine details like leaves might appear a bit blurry or not very clear.
The ultra-wide camera has autofocused so you can use it to shoot closeup objects there’s even a dedicated macro mode which adds some digital zoom on top of that.
In low light again with night mode kicking in the ultrawide Cam does an excellent job the photos are bright and detailed with balanced sharpness well-cleaned Noice and superb color saturation and high contrast if you opt out of the night mode the photos are darker and softer and noisier with dull colors there is still usable but are rather mediocre, the ultra-wide Cams 4K videos are impressive with stunning sharpness around the corners and the other properties match the main Cams.
The iPhone 15 Pro Max has the same selfie camera as last year which has autofocus, The 12MP selfies are superb with lovely colors adequate dynamic range and plenty of detail the detail maybe a bit too pronounced and they may come out as Unflattering.
The iPhone 15 Pro Max is one of the premium phones around but even so, let’s consider what it brings to the table compared to the previous model, you get the lighter design with the titanium frame, the new action key, the new chipset with hardware ray tracing and the revamped cameras which include a nice five times Telephoto,
it’s not perfect there’s the question about its durability thanks to bend and drop test online and the combination of this chipset and IOS 17 seems to have worse thermal management than what we got on the 14 Pro Max and IOS 16, still these aren’t exactly deal breakers and at the end of the day this is the latest and greatest iPhone with solid upgrades and it’s worth recommending.
Q: What are the notable design changes in the iPhone 15 Pro Max compared to the previous model?
A: The iPhone 15 Pro Max features a lighter design with a titanium frame, rounded chamfers for a more comfortable grip, and a matte glass back.
Q: What is the display specification of the iPhone 15 Pro Max?
A: The iPhone 15 Pro Max comes with a 6.7-inch Super Retina XDR OLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate and ceramic shield glass protection.
Q: How does the iPhone 15 Pro Max handle biometrics and storage?
A: The phone uses Apple’s Face ID for secure authentication and offers storage options of 256GB, 512GB, or 1TB, but it doesn’t support expandable storage.
Q: What are the key features of iOS 17 on the iPhone 15 Pro Max?
A: iOS 17 retains the familiar iPhone interface with new features such as customizable call screens, interactive widgets, password sharing, offline maps, and live voicemail.