Mi 14 Ultra: A Photographic Powerhouse

Xiaomi 14 Ultra: Setting a New Standard in Imaging Flagship Smartphones

Recently, Xiaomi launched its Xiaomi 14 Ultra, marking a new era for flagship smartphones in China. It promises an enhanced photography experience through more powerful CMOS sensors, advanced optical lens systems, and further advancements in computational photography.

Xiaomi 14 Ultra

In terms of CMOS, the Xiaomi 14 Ultra features a 1-inch optical LYT-900 main camera, along with 12mm ultra-wide angle, 75mm telephoto, and 120mm telephoto lenses, comprising a highly robust imaging system.

CMOS System

Regarding lenses, it adopts the Summilux optical system with 8 pieces of non-spherical high-transmittance lens elements, ultra-low reflective optical coating, and achieves an f/1.63 – f/4.0 stepless variable aperture for the 1-inch primary camera, demonstrating exceptional technical difficulty.

Optical Lens System

In computational photography, Xiaomi introduces AISP, the first AI large-model computational photography platform. By deeply integrating the capabilities of CPU, GPU, NPU, and ISP through Xiaomi’s powerful OS, it enhances computational power and improves image quality.

Computational Photography

Moreover, worth mentioning is the dual-channel ring-type cooling pump, which enables independent heat dissipation for the processor and camera module, effectively addressing the common issue of overheating during prolonged usage of most imaging smartphones.

Cooling Pump System

Above all, Xiaomi’s deep understanding of imaging stands out.

Understanding of Imaging

Xiaomi believes that good imaging should possess rich details, be delicately nuanced, with clear hierarchies, distinct foreground and background separation, and a sense of depth. This vision of imaging guides Xiaomi in creating its current photographic style and serves as the foundation of everything they do.

Of course, we haven’t yet discussed Xiaomi’s innovative features this time, such as Ultra Snap for super-fast capture, allowing for 150 continuous shots under its algorithm; and Ultra RAW for super high-quality negatives, achieving up to 16-bit RAW format image capture, along with Ultra Zoom AI for super-extended telephoto capabilities, increasing details up to 30X through AI processing.

Photography Innovation

For evaluations, we’ll focus on ordinary photography and Xiaomi’s master portrait mode.

Photography Evaluation

I opted for the Dragon Crystal Blue ceramic-backed Xiaomi 14 Ultra, which not only exudes a high-quality feel but is also easy to maintain and keep clean.

Dragon Crystal Blue

Xiaomi covers a full focal range this time with 12mm, 23mm, 46mm, 75mm, 120mm, and 240mm lenses.

Full Focal Range

With the 1-inch primary lens, the 46mm 2X focal length segment performs exceptionally well.

46mm Focal Length

The 75mm focal length segment maintains image quality admirably, showing Xiaomi’s perfection even in this focal duration.

75mm Focal Length

Surprisingly, the 120mm focal length segment exhibits remarkable resolution and layering capabilities, exceeding expectations. Traditionally, one would expect the 120mm to underperform compared to the 75mm, but in this case, the difference lies primarily in the focal range and aperture variances.
Photographic Powerhouse

Indoors, I experienced the magnificent scenes through the 12mm ultra-wide angle lens.

Photographic Powerhouse

Even with the 120mm telephoto lens indoors, there was no loss of image quality, allowing for strategies that make use of compressed space.

Photographic Powerhouse

Normally, using 120mm is fine, but it depends on the environment. Currently, on the Xiaomi 14 Ultra, you can feel confident using it.

Photographic Powerhouse

It’s now as easy as a snap to shoot, without worrying about shutter speed or ISO settings – the phone takes care of it.

Photographic Powerhouse

Of course, it’s still important to vary composition. For the same scene, you can choose the 75mm focal length, lower the exposure, and achieve better results.

Photographic Powerhouse

Additionally, in the Leica master lens, there are the 35mm and 50mm focal lengths to choose from, with a wide aperture as well.

Photographic Powerhouse

It can be said that the Leica’s tonality captures colorful objects exceptionally well.

Photographic Powerhouse

Sometimes, even if you can’t remember which mode or filter you used for the shot, the results speak for themselves, and that’s what matters.

Photographic Powerhouse

The style of striking a balance between heavy makeup and light application is quite satisfying.

Photographic Powerhouse

Consider using black-and-white filters according to your needs, or add them in post-processing.

Photographic Powerhouse

Stepping out of the museum into the outdoors, you’ll find the Xiaomi 14 Ultra excels in various scenarios.

For many tranquil scenes, just a shot with the primary lens is enough.

Simultaneously, using the 23mm primary lens delivers impressive night scene performance.

Often, the choice is between the 12mm and 23mm lenses, both offering distinct styles.

However, for distant subjects, the 75mm telephoto lens is essential.

Under good lighting conditions, the 120mm telephoto lens also performs well.

Compared to before, I really enjoy using the 120mm telephoto lens this time, as the space compression it provides is incredibly convenient.

Paired with the 75mm telephoto lens, architectural aesthetics can be fully explored without taking many steps.

This fondness for telephoto lenses mainly stems from the comfort of not needing to carry large lenses, easily switching perspectives, and convenient shooting.

After discussing landscapes, let’s look at portraits.

This set of portraits not only excels in portraying people but also surprises with the layers of hands and coffee cups.

The portrait results are excellent, whether using Xiaomi’s master portrait or Leica master lenses.

You can effortlessly achieve different portrait effects without moving by simply adjusting the focal length.

In this iteration, Xiaomi made adjustments, for example, for the 50mm portrait mode with a default of f/1.63, leaving some background details visible. Of course, you can also adjust to the widest aperture.

Moreover, capturing candid moments is convenient – no need to wait, just snap away.

Reflecting the real environment, slightly beautifying the subjects compared to everyday photos, the Xiaomi 14 Ultra’s layered images are satisfying.

Let’s compare with a full-frame mirrorless camera.

This photo shows the effects of the Nikon Z5, shot at a 20mm focal length with an f/2.8 aperture. # Xiaomi 14 Ultra: Capturing Moments with Ease

Xiaomi 14 Ultra

The Xiaomi 14 Ultra offers impressive results with a 23mm focal length and an f/1.63 aperture. It’s evident that the smartphone’s camera performance is top-notch, and with a closer look, one can discover standout features.

There are more photos available, but due to the extensive content and upcoming videos along with three unique Xiaomi features, we won’t be showcasing them all. In summary, photography with this device is a seamless experience. Whether you are at a park with your family or at a tea house with friends, the Xiaomi 14 Ultra can effortlessly capture a wide range of subjects, from vast landscapes to intricate details and intimate portraits. While it may not surpass the image quality of a mirrorless camera, convenience is guaranteed, and the output is quite impressive.

Xiaomi Features

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