Apple has released a preview video showing the video capabilities of the iPhone Xs in 4k 30, 4k 60 and slow motion 1080p 240fps. You can see in the liquid and sound part of the demo the quality delivered by the full HD slow motion but it is hard to judge per pixel sharpness and or artifacts from such a short high shutter video. We will need more real-world samples in order to see if there has been an improvement from the iPhone X of 2017.
We have isolated a part of the footage to see the slow-motion compression and we could detect aliasing in the edges, softness and compression artifacts which are typical of mobile phone high frame rates. The iPhone Xs seems to still have them to some degree. Color and motion on the codec seem to be excellent especially in 4k which looks extremely detailed and with more than acceptable dynamic range.
Apple just released 3 new iPhones and a 4th generation watch. These are all about the screen and speed and not really big new capabilities. It is all refinement and flawless execution but video fans will look at these phones as a continuation of last year’s specs with a better codec and possibly better bit rates and image quality but not much else. The iPhone X and 8 still remain relevant which is expected in an “s” upgrade cycle.
Gone are the big leaps of frame rates and Apple is capping at 1080p 240fps while completely ignoring rivals like the Galaxy S9, OnePlus 6 and Sony Xperia XZ series when it comes to super slow motion video. Apple was at the forefront of these technologies with the iPhone 6 but now have really rested on their laurels while the competition leapfrogs in video capabilities when it comes to frame rates. Others will point out that even when the high speed is restricted you will now get better quality footage in all modes which is certainly an upgrade.
The newly released iPad Pro 2017 refresh in both 10.5 and 12.9 inches share a new camera module that really is a direct transfer from the iPhone 7. It makes sense for Apple to offer their best camera yet in the best iPad they have ever built when it comes to performance. However, you will not get anything in the camera department that makes the iPad Pro a leap forward in frame rates or other imaging specs.
The dual camera setup of the iPhone 7 Plus is not included in the iPad Pro so that is one aspect where the iPhone is still ahead. The new tablets are for all intents and purposes a refinement with speed and software productivity capabilities as the two main goals for the line. They want to be a laptop replacement and they are aiming at the crowd who is fed up with the weight and bulk of traditional laptops.
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