How night photography has changed in 5 years on an iPhone. Comparing evening Moscow on iPhone 7 vs iPhone 13 Pro

Now in the capital the sun rises at 8 am and leaves at 4 pm, and many see the city only at night.

Therefore, the main streets are adapting, they begin to sparkle with signs, lights, garlands at every step.

It’s a good time to check out how dark photography has changed in the five years since the release of the iPhone 7.

The results are visible without a magnifying glass, and compared with iPhone 13 Pro the result was expected. But in some moments it turned out to be surprisingly similar.

Only one characteristic has not changed

The main camera on the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max surpasses the iPhone 7 in every way. It has a larger sensor, seven lenses versus six, a wider aperture, sensor versus objective stabilization, and smart processing algorithms. And this is not to mention the presence of two other modules in the expensive model: ultra-wide-angle and telephoto.

Technically speaking, the iPhone 7 (review) has the following module installed:

Basic 1x: analog 28 mm, ƒ/1.8, 12 MP, sensor 1/3 inch

V iPhone 13 Pro (review) i iPhone 13 Pro Max such three modules:

Over-angle 0.5x: analog 13 mm, ƒ / 1.8, 12 MP, sensor 1 / 3.4 inches
Basic 1x: analog 26 mm, ƒ/1.5 12 MP, sensor 1 / 1.65 inches
Telephone 3x: analogue 77 mm, ƒ / 2.8, 12 MP, sensor 1 / 3.4 inches

I did not limit myself and compared photos, including telephoto and ultra-wide-angle ones, replacing them with digital zoom and panorama mode on the iPhone 7. The results demonstrate the complete superiority of the novelty with one small BUT, about which at the end.

⚠️ All photos were taken without night mode, which is only found in the iPhone 13 Pro. Thanks to the good aperture, in none of the scenarios, it was not activated even automatically. Original photos here.

iPhone 7 shoots much darker

On the left is the iPhone 7, on the right is the iPhone 13 Pro. The texture of the brick is visible on the wall and even a clock in the center of the vault.


You can see not only the masonry of the walls, but also the contents of the windows

On the left is the iPhone 7, on the right is the iPhone 13 Pro. Strong contrast hides poor detail on the left


Crop of photos above. Garlands in the distance are much better visible on the iPhone 13 Pro – especially when zoomed in.

Among all generations of iPhones, there are two that I recognize instantly. These are the iPhone XR | XS, with their overly smooth orange faces, and the iPhone 7, with its bold contrast. I always considered the first case a disadvantage, but I liked the second observation.

It turned out to be a kind of card, the stylistic signature of the 2016 model. She added to the spectacle of the pictures, as if the photos were about to jump out of the screen.

Five years later, you can see how bad it looks. The larger sensor and brighter lens of the iPhone 13 Pro captures light twice as well, and the picture looks more like a photo from a professional camera than from a phone.

The windows do not look like white spots, there is less noise in the sky, the lines are sharper, and the texture is better drawn due to the better brightness.

HDR of the first generations did not work well with highlights

On the left is the iPhone 7, on the right is the iPhone 13 Pro. Advertising screens are whitewashed on iPhone 7, but everything is visible on iPhone 13 Pro


The sign on the right is burned out with white light, and on the left you can see each LED. Showcase cut through too

Left iPhone 7, right iPhone 13 Pro.

On the left is the iPhone 7, on the right is the iPhone 13 Pro. Probably the only case where extreme contrast makes the first positive impression on the iPhone 7

When Apple started hiding manual HDR off in depth Settings, I was the first among the disaffected. Very often the algorithm worked incorrectly, it took a long time and blurred the photo.

But yesterday I was even surprised when I saw a separate button for enabling this mode right in the application. Cameras… It is now impossible to take a photo without Deep Fusion, even if you want to. It turns out that five years ago Apple was not so sure about its algorithms, since it allowed them to be turned off.

The pictures above prove that Smart HDR 4 works if not miracles, then stable and impressive performance. The camera will work correctly in almost any range and will show details at different exposure steps.

In creative shots, this can interfere, of course, in comparison with professional equipment, but for the most part now no one will be outraged that Apple sews software stitching of several images into its devices without our opinion.

The wider angle of the main camera is obvious


Photos were taken from one point

On the left is the iPhone 7, on the right is the iPhone 13 Pro. The distance between houses is good for emphasizing the working angles of smartphones.


Strange, but the color from the ultra wide-angle camera is more similar to the iPhone 7 than from the main one.

Starting with the iPhone 11, the standard camera shoots at an angle identical to 26mm. Before that, it was equal to 28 mm, so that a little less fit into the frame.

The approach makes the cameras brighter, but the main advantage is that now the effect of depth of the frame is created more and you can move less often further from the subject to achieve the desired composition.

It seemed funny that the white balance of the main cameras was different, but the ultra-wide-angle module of the iPhone 13 Pro produced a result similar to the iPhone 7 in color. And the quality of the picture itself, even at an angle of 13 mm, is much better from the main camera of the iPhone 7. Even if it is enlarged and cropped.

The longer you look at 3x magnification, the more you can see.

On the left is the iPhone 7, on the right is the iPhone 13 Pro. At least you can see the time better, and the overall clarity has improved.


Everything is better here: details, volume, color range, HDR

The iPhone 7 Plus was the first 2x zoom smartphone in Apple smartphones. But for these purposes he did not always work.

Fun fact: the telephoto aperture in the iPhone 13 Pro is back to the same weak ƒ / 2.8 that the first telephoto in the iPhone 7 Plus had. Until 2021, optical zoom aperture got better, reaching ƒ / 2.0 in the iPhone 12 Pro. The change is due to the fact that the magnification has increased from two to three times, so that the cameras are darker and with less blur.

The lack of a too narrow aperture in the new camera is compensated by the work of Deep Fusion, which completes the details of photos by shooting several frames and neural networks.

Moreover, this can happen aggressively: both in the first generation, and now sometimes the optical approximation is turned off, being replaced by a digital one in order to ensure an adequate level of illumination. At such moments, algorithms are trying to draw out detailing.

Unlike the first iteration of telephoto, by 2021, optical zoom began to work much more stable and even in the dark, it functioned almost all the time.

Ultra wide-angle camera versus panorama mode


Shot with the ultra-wide-angle camera of the iPhone 13 Pro in 0.2 seconds


Shot in panorama mode on iPhone 7 in 5 minutes on 4th try

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In small steps, mobile photography has evolved dramatically

During the shooting, I was surprised how much the camera application improved, and the speed of work, and the result at the output. The comparison was brutal, and in my opinion, the iPhone 7 did not perform as badly as I initially thought.

White balance, for example, was similar from photo to photo, and some of the shots strongly resembled each other. only from afar.

But the progress is too obvious. Each year, the company slightly tweaked the characteristics, physically increasing the sensor, the number of lenses, accelerating the processor and allocating its power for these tasks. AND in those moments when the iPhone 7 shot downright poorly, the iPhone 13 Pro produced a result suitable for processing, cropping, and professional use.

Experience has shown that the base iPhone 13 without optical zoom, although it does not play on equal terms with the iPhone 13 Pro, will still shoot much better than the old iPhones thanks to the main matrix. After all, it is 47% more than in the previous generation, and is not inferior in quality to its older brother.

📲 New Apple devices start at 70 thousand rubles:

▪️ iPhone 13 mini from RUB 69.990
▪️ iPhone 13 from RUB 79.990
▪️ iPhone 13 Pro from RUB 99.990
▪️ iPhone 13 Pro Max от RUB 109.990

Original photos here.

📸 All photos in this post:


Source: iPhones.ru — Новости высоких технологий, обзоры смартфонов, презентации Apple by www.iphones.ru.

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