• November 28, 2022

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Dxomark has awarded Xiaomi’s 12T Pro smartphone top ranking in the second-tier ‘premium’ category of the company’s Dxomark Camera benchmark — while discovering some surprising results.

With a Dxomark Camera score of 129 points, the 12T Pro nudges Vivo’s X70 Pro down into second place at 126 points and sits ahead of Apple’s iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini with 125 points each. Dxomark’s review praised the 12T Pro for its highly-detailed still images, pleasant colors and correct exposure in all lighting conditions. However, it suffered in terms of zoom performance at both the ultra-wide and long-range settings.

One surprising result, however, comes in the form of the 12T Pro’s video score. Here, it manages to outperform Xiaomi’s much more expensive 12 Pro and 12S Ultra handsets, thanks to its reported low-light performance, dynamic range, detail and lack of noise.

Just as surprising is Dxomark’s portrait mode, or ‘bokeh’ score, where the 12T Pro matches the 12 Pro with 70 points, outperforming 12S Ultra which stands at 65 points.

Thanks to these results, the 12T Pro achieves the same overall Dxomark Camera score as the much more expensive 12 Pro, albeit with a lower score for stills. If you’re more into video, however, then the 12 T Pro could save you some money.

Smartphones in the premium category typically offer camera hardware that’s one step down from flagship territory, and are priced between $600 and $800 at launch. This nearly always means doing without one of the lenses found on the companies’ flagship models, typically the telephoto lens, resulting in reduced long-distance zoom capabilities.

That’s also the case here, but with the 12T Pro, Xiaomi has opted for a completely new rear camera system, showcasing a new 200-megapixel sensor alongside an 8-megapixel ultrawide and a 2-megapixel dedicated macro module.

This is a radical departure from the ‘ultra premium’ level 12 Pro and 12S Ultra, both of which use large 50-megapixel main sensors teamed up with 48-megapixel (12S Ultra) or 50-megapixel (12T Pro) telephoto and ultrawide cameras.

This also goes some way to explaining why individual test results are often so different across Xiaomi’s smartphone range. Dxomark’s results also prove that more expensive doesn’t always mean better quality.

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