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Xiaomi 14 Ultra review: Great camera

Xiaomi 14 Ultra review: Great camera

Xiaomi 14 Ultra

The Xiaomi 14 Ultra has great cameras for photography, though there are other really good camera phones around too, such as the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra with its impressive zoom, and the Apple iPhone 15 Pro Max with its great optics. But this Leica-powered Android smartphone has its own charms, with a large 1/0.98-inch sensor that lets you capture a lot more data, and a variable aperture lens.

Quick specs

  • 6.73-inch AMOLED (3,200 x 1,440 pixels, 1 to 120Hz)
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 with 16GB RAM, 512GB storage
  • 5,000mAh battery, 90W charging, 80W wireless charging
  • Cameras: 50MP, 50MP telephoto, 50MP super telephoto, 50MP ultra-wide, 32MP front

The main reason to get this phone is obviously the four Leica-powered cameras. You get a 50MP main camera with a variable aperture that goes from f/1.63 to f/4.0. There's a 75mm telephoto camera that can be used for macro photography, a 120mm periscope camera for up to 5x optical zoom, and a 12mm ultra-wide camera. When taking photos, you can switch between two Leica image processing modes: Leica Authentic and Lecia Vibrant.

Xiaomi 14 Ultra
Credit: Aloysius Low/Can Buy or Not

Leica Vibrant is still my go to, because I like the punchier colours. However, the phone really shines for black-and-white photography. Just turn on the filter and you're set. You get images with very nice shadows and contrast, and you can also shoot in RAW. This allows you to shoot in colour, before adjusting it to black-and-white if that's your preference. Night shots are great, with starburst shots from lights that you don't normally get from camera phones. The zoom is fine, but nowhere near as good as the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra.

Xiaomi 14 Ultra
Credit: Aloysius Low/Can Buy or Not

Topping the camera stuff off is the photography grip accessory that comes with the Photography Kit that's sold separately. It attaches to the bottom of the phone together with a case and makes the Xiaomi 14 Ultra feel like an actual camera. I like that you can now charge your phone through the grip — you previously couldn't with the Xiaomi 13 Ultra. The case also adds the ability to use 67mm filters on the phone. That works great, allowing me to use a CPL or ND filter to get cooler shots.

As with the Xiaomi 13 Ultra, the Xiaomi 14 Ultra features a textured rear back. It's still vegan leather, but claimed to be six times more wear resistant. It feels really premium. It also keeps a gold ring around the camera module, though this is not as obvious as on the Xiaomi 13 Ultra.

Xiaomi 14 Ultra
Credit: Aloysius Low/Can Buy or Not

Other specs include IP68 dust and water resistance, a 1,440p 6.73-inch AMOLED display with dynamic refresh rate and 3,000 nits peak brightness. We got 9hr 4mins of run time on the Xiaomi 14 Ultra's 5,000mAh battery with PCMark's Work 3.0 battery life test. There's also 90W fast charging, and 80W wireless charging, but you'll need Xiaomi's HyperCharge charger to achieve this.

See Also
Razer USB-C Dock

Xiaomi 14 Ultra test shots
Credit: Aloysius Low/Can Buy or Not
Xiaomi 14 Ultra test shots
Credit: Aloysius Low/Can Buy or Not
Xiaomi 14 Ultra test shots
Credit: Aloysius Low/Can Buy or Not

At S$1,699, the Xiaomi 14 Ultra is a compact camera disguised as a phone. It takes excellent images that are really good, especially black-and-white shots. Get it from Lazada or Shopee.

Note: Review unit provided by Xiaomi.


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Verdict



CAN BUY

It's a Leica, it's a phone, it's a camera

Buy from Shopee
Get from Lazada

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