The biggest and best of everything in an iPhone
The iPhone 14 Pro Max is unquestionably the greatest iPhone available right now. The greatest cameras, biggest screen, best design, and smartest display are all found in it. All of that will cost money, but if you’re set on getting an iPhone and want the pinnacle model, this is unquestionably the phone for you. We might suggest the more portable 6.1-inch iPhone 14 Pro in its place if you don’t mind a slightly smaller display and want to carry less weight.
- Great design and build
- Incredible camera quality
- Dynamic Island is clever and innovative
- 3x zoom leaves you wanting more
- Still waiting for ultra-fast charging
- Battery life is weaker than last year
It is notably more powerful than the new iPhone 14 and its larger sibling, the 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Plus, but not significantly more powerful than the identical but smaller 6.1-inch iPhone 14 Pro.
Apple decided to use just half of its new phones with its best, quickest, and arguably most efficient silicon for the first time in a while. The A15 Bionic chip, which has one extra GPU core than the A15 Bionic in the ordinary iPhone 13, is used in the iPhone 14 and 14 Plus, while the A16 Bionic, which uses an entirely new 4-nanometer process, is used in the iPhone 14 Pro and 14 Pro Max.
When it comes to value, though, the iPhone 14 Pro Max more than makes up for its price with rapid speed, a screen that can now achieve a sun-beating 2,000-nit brightness, and new low-power 1Hz always-on display capabilities that’s only there for a fleeting peek.
The new Dynamic Island will be the topic of conversation. We can definitely be counted among those who were absolutely taken aback by Apple’s novel approach to the notch, which featured a flexible display “island” floating only a few millimetres from the top border of the screen.
The front camera (now improved with focusing) and sensors for 3D measurement are still present on this island, but other hardware, such as the proximity sensor, is now concealed beneath the display.
What’s left is essentially a pair of cutouts, one shaped like a pill and the other like a circle, with a tiny portion of the active screen positioned in the middle.
Its overall shape is similar to a smaller cylinder, and when it isn’t in use, it may be completely black with no animation or indication. But it has the amazing capacity to change in response to screen activity and motions.
It has been a long time coming for an always-on display that can refresh at just 1Hz to conserve power.
When it came to adopting this feature, Apple lagged well behind the competition, but as always, it did so in its own unique manner.
Although it slightly depletes the battery, it’s good to be able to see the time, date, and information-filled widgets on your iPhone’s screen without having to touch and unlock it.
Pixel binning, a popular feature on many Android smartphones that combines brightness and colour data from four (or more) pixels on the sensor for increased low-light performance and colour accuracy, is now available on the iPhone thanks to the updated camera array.
Apple chose a 48MP sensor for the primary camera, a far cry from, say, the 108MP sensor on the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra. However, as you’ll see below, this is more of a technological development than a headline statistic.
By the way, this sensor is coupled with a fantastic lens.
Additionally, you may shoot in 48MP ProRAW mode, which is excellent for professionals (you must enable this option in the settings).
We consider the 120 degree field of view provided by the 12MP ultrawide camera to be “wide enough,” and the quality is improved by the use of a considerably larger sensor and more focus pixels. Wide-angle photographs that are taken with the new ultrawide lens are brighter and more colourful, and macro photography is also greatly improved.
However, despite competitors giving 10x optical and 100x (although heavily interpolated) “Space Zoom,” Apple can’t seem to figure out how to give us more than 3x optical zoom. A 5x optical zoom would have been acceptable to us.
The zoom is actually just using a central portion of the entire 48MP sensor; there is no compression, just a marquee from the main sensor that gives you enough information to get closer without losing any quality, as you would with a digital zoom.
This additional in-between level of 2x optical zoom is more useful than it sounds. The new A16 Bionic chip is what drives the entire show. With 16 billion transistors and a more compact, effective 4-nanometer technology, it is an improvement above the A15 Bionic (which, as previously indicated, continues to be used in the iPhone 14 and 14 Plus).
IPHONE 14 PRO MAX PRICE AND RELEASE DATE
- 128GB: $1,099 / £1,199 / AU$1,899
- 256GB: $1,199 / £1,309 / AU$2,099
- 512GB: $1,399 / £1,529 / AU$2,419
- 1TB: $1,599 / £1,740 / AU$2,769
On September 7, 2022, Apple introduced the whole lineup of iPhone 14 models, including the iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus, iPhone 14 Pro, and iPhone 14 Pro Max.
Pre-orders began on September 9; as of September 16, three products from the series (with the exception of the Plus, which arrived on October 7) are on sale. The 128GB option of the 14 Pro Max costs $1,099 / £1,199 / AU$1,899, but you can upgrade to a device with up to 1TB of storage. Contrary to the majority of Android phones, there are no choices for memory expansion beyond the default 6GB.
- Value score: 4/5
IPHONE 14 PRO MAX DESIGN
- Familiar ‘Pro’ design
- Size only slightly different
- Display has a fresh look without the notch
The iPhone 14 Pro Max may be confused for the iPhone 13 Pro Max at first appearance, barring the gorgeous new Deep Purple paint. It is that comparable. However, there are a few minute variations.
The iPhone 14 Pro Max is just a hair thicker and a tiny bit shorter and slimmer than the previous model at 160.7 x 77.6 x 7.85mm. When you look at or hold the phone, none of this is obvious; perhaps this is because it weighs the same as the iPhone 13 Pro Max at 240g.
- Design score: 4.5/5
IPHONE 14 PRO MAX DISPLAY
- 6.7-inch Super Retina XDR is still gorgeous
- Dynamic Island replaces the notch
Adaptive refresh and Always-on are welcome additions
The notch is gone, and in its stead, the somewhat more pixel-dense 2796 x 1290 pixel display has what looks to be an oval cutout. The Dynamic Island stays up to its name and floats a few millimetres down from that top edge of the OLED screen rather than hugging the top and enclosing that incredibly narrow speaker hole.
When you look at this dim area, there are several things that are not immediately apparent. The former TrueDepth components are not all housed there, to start. The flood illuminator, IR sensor, and 12MP camera are all still present (with focusing), however the proximity sensor has been relocated behind the screen. Second, the Dynamic Island is entirely touch sensitive.
A closer inspection of the Dynamic Island reveals a circle and a pill-shaped cutout that are encircled by a black “island” and divided by a little space. Precisely because the iPhone can use them for things like its security notice, the separating area is covered in pixels (a little green dot that lets you know the camera or mic is in use).
By expanding and contracting to enable, for example, Face ID identification (both registration and reading your face for every unlock) and to fit tiny audio indicators that signal music playing, that extra patch of pixels contributes to the illusion that the entire space is fungible.
The entire Dynamic Island’s surface is touch sensitive, so you can use gestures to access things like music, Maps, Find My, the status of your iPhone’s lock screen, incoming calls, and more.
- Display score: 5/5
IPHONE 14 PRO MAX CAMERAS
- Finally gets a 48MP quad-pixel sensor
- Upgrades across the board for the three-lens array
- TrueDepth camera gains autofocus
Although the camera array on the iPhone 14 Pro Max (and iPhone 14 Pro) may resemble that on the iphone 13 Pro Max, the lenses and sensors are completely different.
The 48MP quad-pixel primary camera is the highlight of this trio.
Apple took years to release a sensor with this many pixels, and yes, it treats quad-pixel binning as a novel concept.
It isn’t. The 108MP primary sensor on the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra features nine-pixel binning.
For increased colours and low-light performance, the sensors in both cases collect the data from several pixels and combine it into one bigger, richer effective pixel.
On the iPhone 14 Pro Max, most people will shoot in 12MP mode. To enable full 48MP raw format shooting you have to dig into the settings, which will add the ‘raw’ option to the camera interface.
- 48MP Main camera (24mm, f/1.78)
- 12MP Ultra Wide (13mm, f/2.2)
- 12MP 3x Telephoto (77mm f/2.8)
- 12MP front-facing TrueDepth camera (f/1.9)
- Camera score: 4/5
IPHONE 14 PRO MAX BATTERY
- Battery life disappoints with always-on displahy
- 26 hours possible with limited, indoor use.
- Always on and outdoor, ultra-bright use reduces battery life hard
- Battery score: 4/5
IPHONE 14 PRO MAX AUDIO
- Impressive audio quality
- Microphones perform well in voice calls
A quick note about the Apple iPhone 14 Pro Max’s speaker system. Its two stereo speakers – one on the bottom edge of the phone and the other at the very top edge of the screen – can produce loud and sharp sound, but they’re also capable of spatial audio. This can be a real treat when watching Dolby Atomos-supporting content, like Netflix’s The Adam Project.
IPHONE 14 PRO MAX PERFORMANCE AND SPECS
- Apple’s latest A16 Bionic
- Built on a more-efficient 4-nanometer process
- 1 billion more transistors than the A15 Bionic
- Approximately 6GB of RAM with no option for more
The iPhone 14 Pro Max’s photography capabilities are powered by Apple’s new A16 Bionic chipset in addition to the multi-element lenses and bigger sensors.
With 16 billion transistors, this new chip has a billion more than the A15 Bionic in the iPhone 14 and 14 Plus. Apple boasted that the new CPU can perform 17 trillion operations per second at its debut event.
Additionally, it is constructed using a 4-nanometer process as opposed to the A15’s 5-nanometer technology, which should result in a mobile CPU that is more effective.
Thoughts On Buying/Not-Buying
Buy it If
- You want the biggest and best iPhone screen
- You want more battery life
- You want current-gen camera technology
Don’t Buy If
- You’re on a tight budget
- You want more zooming Lens