One of the main attractions of the new iPhone 13, especially the Pro models, is the evolutionary leap of its cameras compared to the previous generation.
The iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro have a similar base configuration: 12 MP telephoto, 12 MP ultra-wide, and 12 MP main sensor. However, the ultra-wide camera aperture on the iPhone 13s improved from f / 2.4 to f / 1.8. This means that we would find considerable improvements in low light situations. In addition, the iPhone 13 Pro has 3x optical zoom (the 12 Pro stay at 12x).
At least on paper, the iPhone 12 Pro camera loses the battle with the new iPhone 13 Pro both because of the aperture and because of the sensor and the pixel size or the optical zoom. With that said, we will look at some images taken with both devices in the same environments to compare them. Judge for yourself.
The following samples were taken with the automatic mode on a perfect sunny day. As you can see, the level of sharpness is similar, but the iPhone 13 Pro has a much more balanced dynamic range (this is best seen in the skies, much more realistic and less burned than the iPhone 12 Pro).
Personally, I also think that the color reproduction is much more realistic and less saturated in the 13 Pro than in the 12 Pro, and something similar happens with the luminosity.
In the case of images taken with portrait mode, both with the front and main cameras, we also noticed improvements in the aforementioned aspects. That is, similar sharpness, similar quality blur mode, but much more brightness and a much more realistic color reproduction.
Where we most notice the differences with the portrait mode is at night. As you can see in the following images, the iPhone 13 Pro gives us more and better luminosity, as well as a much higher level of sharpness and cropping.
When we face these two phones indoors, where the light falters and artificial sources also predominate, the iPhone 13 Pro wins by a landslide. In these first two images we see how the device performs the bokeh much better than its predecessor, it gives more realistic colors and a much more natural blur.
Another improvement that the iPhone 13 Pro presents is the ability to take much sharper close-up (macro) photos. As you see in these photos, the phone allowed me to get much closer to the corn kernels and reproduced them much more accurately than the iPhone 12 Pro.
In the following images we see again how the indoor portrait mode is much more polished with the iPhone 13 Pro. The subject is much more in focus with respect to the background and the color reproduction is much more vivid.
If we expose both phones to a low-light situation (in this case, at dusk), we see how again those points of greater aperture of the iPhone 13 Pro make the photos not only brighter but much more realistic.