David Lewis Talking Tech & Audio
Search
Close this search box.

2 weeks with iPhone 14 Pro – and THAT camera

This has been my first pro iPhone ever…what an eye-opener

iPhone 14 Pro
image courtesy of author

Not all hype

iPhone 14 Pro has really opened my eyes up.

For a man who is in to his tech, and Apple tech in particular, that is quite a surprising statement, I know. Being based in the UK means that the easiest way to get in to iPhone is with a carrier subsidy.

That is how it started for me many years ago, and once you are in that cycle, the 24-month renewal phone just seems to fall in to your lap, almost without you recognising it. It appears, on the face of it, that you are getting something for nothing…which, of course, you are not! Over the period of your contract, you are more than paying for the iPhone.

The biggest downside with carrier subsidies is, however, they are not keen on supporting the unusual, or spec’d-up iPhones. And that is why I was caught in this trap of standard iPhones.

More than just a phone

Clearly, my needs and priorities have shifted over the last year.

Since starting my YouTube channel, my iPhone has been a central cog in that wheel. It was solely responsible for shooting both the video, b-roll and thumbnail shots. It seemed to be doing its job – or so I thought!

It turns out, it was merely getting by, and I had (at least) one hand firmly tied behind my back.

But, overnight, the quality of my channel has exploded, and it is all because I made the jump.

Two weeks back, I bought a deep purple iPhone 14 Pro with 1TB of storage, and it must go down as one of the best moves I have made.

Bought for purpose

This iPhone 14 Pro was bought very much with the channel and content creation in mind. Not having used a full-blown DSLR, I thought the time spent in learning how the hell to set one up, may slow me down too much.

The early reviews on the camera set-up were coming in as I was about to buy my iPhone 14 Pro, and they were convincing me that this was the way to go.

The results, from the very first moment, just blew my mind. Coming from the cameras of a standard, two-year-old iPhone, to the best-ever cameras on the iPhone 14 Pro, vindicated my decision to buy an iPhone 14 Pro.

A bit of house-keeping

If you find yourself in a similar position, of buying the iPhone 14 Pro ostensibly for its camera, there are a few things that I set up before using it, that may help you too.

Head to Settings > Camera and then, first, to Formats and switch camera capture to Most Compatible. I have Photo Capture set to Apple ProRaw and Video Capture to ProRes. By enabling these two settings, you’ll always have the option on screen, as you shoot, to take advantage of these un-compressed formats. I have both video & cinematic set to the (more or less) standard of 24fps and 4K. Also, top-tip, make sure you have turned on your grids too.

Preserve Settings is a tab that is often overlooked, but worth your time in going through. In there, the most important settings are the top two, and in particular, the Creative Controls tab.

That has helped me enormously, when shooting video in Cinematic mode. Out of the box, iPhone 14 Pro will shoot cinematic at ƒ2.8 which is way too blurry. You can edit the effect after the fact, but if you enable preserve settings, then you will only ever have to alter that setting once. iPhone 14 Pro will then remember your chosen setting, and default to that every time…so useful.

Photographic Styles, has never been for me. Particularly, now with ProRaw, I’d rather capture images as I see them, and then edit in post, with Photoshop. But, if you want a quick fix, and to have a general ‘look’ to your images, this is no bad option.

ProRaw

The images I am capturing shooting ProRaw are just unctuous! So much information – the colour, shadow, preserving both whites and blacks – taking these images in to Photoshop, and having so much information with which to edit, has been a game-changer.

I have recently become part of the ever-growing Vero community. If you fancy following me, you’ll find me here. I post most days, and it gives you an idea of what I am up to when not writing.

The camera on iPhone 14 Pro has made me more creative, and helped me to fall in love with photography. I have not shot low light yet, but in daylight, and studio conditions, this camera is packing a serious punch. Mighty, impressive stuff.

The images are way bigger than your normal, compressed images, but that is to be expected. Typically, I have found them to be between 20MB and 90MB per image, but in my opinion, that file size is not vanity – every pixel counts.

ProRes

Ok, so on this one, I am a little undecided, but I know which way I am now leaning.

As you will have gathered, I am the kind of guy that likes the best! If the iPhone 14 Pro can give me 90MB, ProRaw images, then I am gonna take full advantage of it. Likewise with the video, if it can shoot ProRes, then I will take all the data it can give me. But here, with video, there is a problem with file size.

What ends up as being a 10-minute video on the channel, will probably have seen me shooting for about 35-40 minutes. In ProRes, those files were over 200GB! It is not the file size in itself, which is the issue. You recall I bought the iPhone 14 Pro with 1TB of storage – now you know why…I was future proofing.

Although the 200GB+ file will fit on the iPhone 14 Pro no worries, transferring the file is a total nightmare. Until today, the only way I had been able to get the file from the iPhone 14 Pro, was using Image Capture and then hook the iPhone up via the yawn-fully slow lightning cable. 200GB would take around 2 hours to off-load. Hardly very productive!

Today, I have come up with a potential new workflow – set the up the iPhone 14 Pro as normal, then record direct to the MacBook using QuickTime. Now, I have not tried it out yet, but I think I may have just come up with a genius plan…I will let you know how that goes.

But, but, even with this new workflow in place, I am not convinced that ProRes delivers enough benefits over say, 4K Cinematic. I have shot both formats now, and I am hard-pushed to tell the difference. There is possibly slightly better skin tones on the ProRes file, but we are talking marginal.

Adobe Premiere Pro handles the files just fine on this M1 Max MacBook Pro. Playback is smooth, with no dropped frames, but you are still left with a massive file to store on any back-up, redundancy drive. Not only that, but the final delivery is on YouTube, who will compress my H.264 movie file still further. Now, I know, the more initial data you can give, the better. Their compression will have more to work with, but the rule of diminishing returns does start to kick in.

Nope, I think for me, cinematic mode, shooting at 4k – 24FPS, ƒ4.5 will be my sweet-spot from now on. The colour is great, the file sizes, although large, far more palatable and there is so little difference in the final video quality, as to be of no real concern to me.

Wrapping up

Who knows, one day in the future, as my love of photography grows, and my need for even more professional video quality becomes apparent, I may still dip my toes in to the DSLR market.

But for now, I really could not be happier with the results of this iPhone 14 Pro. I guess I fall somewhere between pro-sumer and consumer when it comes to the iPhone 14 cameras. It is not my sole stream of professional work, but, it does play a massive part in my every-day life.

With minimal fuss and set-up, this iPhone 14 Pro camera was ready to be set to work. And, the results have been astonishing. Of course those ‘big-boy’ cameras will be even better, I know that, but I’m shooting for YouTube not Hollywood.

Honestly, if you find yourself in a similar position, I can assure you that the cameras on the iPhone 14 Pros will not disappoint. In the real world, put to real work, this camera array is packing a serious punch.

From now on, for me, it is iPhone Pro every time. Now, let’s see how I get on with that wizard Quicktime idea shall we…

Getting involved

Guess what – if you look forward to my articles & blogs landing each day, you can help that happen! By clicking via this link, you can join Medium, and get my blogs every day, the moment I publish them. And, you can even get email notifications about them too. Go on – one little click of the Magic Mouse, will make a big difference to both you and me! 😋

Get in the vibe and listen along to today’s chosen soundtrack. I wrote this whilst listening to get in the vibe and listen along to today’s chosen soundtrack. I wrote this whilst listening to https://music.apple.com/gb/album/gate-of-dreams/357944521

Fancy receiving my weekly video newsletter?

It’s free, and simple to join. Just leave me your details here, and every Sunday lunchtime, I will drop in to your inbox, catching up on the last week.

Finally, I am now on Vero – follow me here https://www.vero.co/dtalkingtech

Are you subscribed to Medium yet?

I am only one of a whole host of writers here on Medium, the premium blogging site. It is such good value, and you can join below.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *