iPhone 15 Pro Max vs. iPhone 15 Pro: A Detailed Comparison
Apple has once again taken the smartphone world by storm with its revolutionary iPhone 15 series. The iPhone 15 Pro Max and iPhone 15 Pro, two of the standout models in this series, offer distinct features and capabilities. The decision of which one to choose may seem daunting, but in this comprehensive comparison, we will delve into the differences between the two to help you make an informed choice.
As the iPhone 15 series launches in Singapore on September 22nd, the anticipation and excitement among tech enthusiasts are palpable. This latest iteration promises significant upgrades over its predecessors, and for many prospective buyers, the choice between the iPhone 15 Pro Max and iPhone 15 Pro is the most pressing decision.
The iPhone 15 Pro offers four storage options: 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, and a whopping 1TB. In contrast, the iPhone 15 Pro Max comes in three storage variants, starting at 256GB, followed by 512GB and 1TB.
In this detailed comparison, we will explore the differences between the iPhone 15 Pro Max and iPhone 15 Pro, helping you determine which one aligns with your needs and preferences.
Design and Display Quality
The design of the iPhone 15 Pro Max and iPhone 15 Pro exhibits several similarities, but there are key distinctions worth noting.
Both models feature a new titanium frame with a brushed finish. This material not only enhances durability but also reduces the overall weight of the devices. While the frame’s durability is a noteworthy aspect, the reduction in weight is particularly appealing. The iPhone 15 Pro weighs in at 188 grams, while the iPhone 15 Pro Max is slightly heavier at 221 grams. Despite this difference, both models are lighter than their predecessors, signifying a positive shift in design.
Both phones sport slimmer bezels around their screens, contributing to a modern aesthetic. Additionally, the edges of these devices are now slightly contoured, improving comfort during use.
One of the most significant changes is the inclusion of a USB-C port, allowing for compatibility with standard USB-C cables for charging. However, it’s worth noting that to take advantage of the faster USB 3 transfer rates of up to 10Gbps, a USB 3-compatible cable is required. The cable included in the box is USB 2-rated, offering slower transfer speeds.
Regarding color choices, Apple has departed from its vibrant color options, opting for more muted tones. The available colors include Titanium Black, Titanium White, Titanium Blue, and Titanium Gray.
Performance and Software
Both the iPhone 15 Pro Max and iPhone 15 Pro are powered by the groundbreaking Apple A17 Pro chip, marking a significant leap in smartphone technology. This chip utilizes a 3nm process, accommodating a staggering 19 billion transistors, three billion more than its predecessor. The GPU performance is particularly impressive, boasting a new 6-core GPU that significantly enhances gaming capabilities. In terms of CPU performance, the high-performance cores deliver a 10% speed increase.
Both models are equipped with 8GB of RAM, an improvement over the 6GB RAM in the iPhone 14 Pro series. While the type and speed of the RAM remain unchanged, the additional RAM enhances multitasking capabilities.
The larger size of the iPhone 15 Pro Max provides an advantage in terms of heat dissipation during intensive tasks, resulting in less thermal throttling during extended gaming sessions.
Both the iPhone 15 Pro Max and iPhone 15 Pro run on the same iOS 17 software, which introduces various new features. The Phone, Messages, and FaceTime apps receive significant updates, with improvements to autocorrect and enhanced features such as Contact Posters and NameDrop. Additional iOS 17 features include Standby Mode, interactive widgets, mood tracking in the Health app, and a new journaling app.
Both models share a similar camera setup, featuring three rear cameras: a main camera, an ultra-wide shooter, and a telephoto zoom lens. The most significant difference in the camera department is the zoom capability. The iPhone 15 Pro Max boasts a 5X zoom lens, while the iPhone 15 Pro features a 3X zoom lens.
The star of the show is undoubtedly the 5X zoom camera on the iPhone 15 Pro Max. This 120mm equivalent lens employs a tetra-prism design, bouncing light four times before it reaches the sensor. The sensor itself is the first in the world to incorporate 3D sensor shift stabilization, ensuring steady and sharp images and videos, even when zoomed in.
The primary 48-megapixel sensor is 25% larger than its predecessor, offering sensor crop lossless zoom at 1.2X (28mm) and 1.5X (35mm). This diversity in focal lengths enhances photographic versatility. Additionally, the default shooting mode now captures 24-megapixel images with improved detail compared to the previous 12-megapixel default. The option to capture 48MP shots in both ProRAW and HEIF formats is also available.
The ultra-wide camera and front-facing cameras receive enhancements through an improved Smart HDR algorithm, resulting in improved low-light performance and cleaner detail.
In terms of video capabilities, Spatial video is the standout feature. It utilizes both the ultra-wide and main cameras to capture depth information, creating an immersive 3D-like video experience that can be enjoyed on the Apple Vision Pro headset.
Audio Quality and Haptics
Both iPhone 15 Pro models feature a main bottom-firing speaker and a secondary speaker located in the earpiece. While Apple made significant improvements in loudspeaker quality with the iPhone 13 family, further enhancements in audio quality may be limited in the iPhone 15 Pro series. However, users can expect subtle improvements in audio performance.
Regarding haptics, Apple continues to employ its industry-leading Taptic Engine, ensuring excellent haptic feedback.
Battery Life and Charging
Battery life remains a crucial factor in the choice between the iPhone 15 Pro Max and iPhone 15 Pro. The iPhone 15 Pro Max is equipped with a 4,422 mAh battery, significantly larger than the 3,274 mAh battery in the iPhone 15 Pro. This substantial difference translates to approximately 6 hours of screen time for the iPhone 15 Pro and approximately 8 hours for the iPhone 15 Pro Max. Consequently, the iPhone 15 Pro Max offers a two-day battery life, while the iPhone 15 Pro provides a one-day battery life.
Charging speeds have not changed significantly, despite the introduction of the USB-C port. Officially, both models support 20W charging, but unofficially, the iPhone 15 Pro can achieve up to 23W, while the Pro Max can reach up to 27W.
Summary and Final Verdict
In summary, the decision between the iPhone 15 Pro Max and iPhone 15 Pro depends on your specific needs and preferences.
The iPhone 15 Pro Max offers several advantages, including the 5X zoom camera, longer battery life, and a larger screen. If you prioritize these features and are comfortable with the larger form factor, the iPhone 15 Pro Max is a compelling choice.
On the other hand, if you prefer a more compact phone that is easier to handle with one hand, the iPhone 15 Pro is an excellent option. It provides a one-day battery life and shares many features with its larger counterpart.
Ultimately, both models deliver exceptional performance and access to the latest iOS 17 features. Your decision should be based on your priorities, whether it’s camera capabilities, battery life, or device size. The iPhone 15 Pro Max and iPhone 15 Pro cater to different preferences, ensuring that there is a suitable choice for every user.
GSM / CDMA / HSPA / EVDO / LTE / 5G
2G bands GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 – SIM 1 & SIM 2 (dual-SIM)
CDMA 800 / 1900
3G bands HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1700(AWS) / 1900 / 2100
4G bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 12, 13, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 28, 30, 32, 34, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 46, 48, 53, 66 – A3102
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 12, 13, 14, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 28, 29, 30, 32, 34, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 46, 48, 53, 66, 71 – A2848
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13, 14, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 25, 26, 28, 29, 30, 32, 34, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 46, 48, 53, 66, 71 – A3101
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 12, 13, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 28, 30, 32, 34, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 46, 48, 66 – A3104
5G bands 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 12, 20, 25, 26, 28, 30, 38, 40, 41, 48, 53, 66, 70, 77, 78, 79 SA/NSA/Sub6 – A3102
1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 12, 14, 20, 25, 26, 28, 29, 30, 38, 40, 41, 48, 53, 66, 70, 71, 77, 78, 79, 258, 260, 261 SA/NSA/Sub6/mmWave – A2848
1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 12, 14, 20, 25, 26, 28, 29, 30, 38, 40, 41, 48, 53, 66, 70, 71, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79 SA/NSA/Sub6 – A3101
1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 12, 20, 25, 26, 28, 30, 38, 40, 41, 48, 66, 70, 77, 78, 79 SA/NSA/Sub6 – A3104
Speed HSPA, LTE-A, 5G, EV-DO Rev.A 3.1 Mbps
Dimensions 146.6 x 70.6 x 8.3 mm (5.77 x 2.78 x 0.33 in)
Weight 187 g (6.60 oz)
Build Glass front (Corning-made glass), glass back (Corning-made glass), titanium frame (grade 5)
SIM Nano-SIM and eSIM – International
Dual eSIM with multiple numbers – USA
Dual SIM (Nano-SIM, dual stand-by) – China
IP68 dust/water resistant (up to 6m for 30 min)
Apple Pay (Visa, MasterCard, AMEX certified)
Type LTPO Super Retina XDR OLED, 120Hz, HDR10, Dolby Vision, 1000 nits (typ), 2000 nits (HBM)
Size 6.1 inches, 91.3 cm2 (~88.2% screen-to-body ratio)
Resolution 1179 x 2556 pixels, 19.5:9 ratio (~461 ppi density)
Protection Ceramic Shield glass
OS iOS 17
Chipset Apple A17 Pro (3 nm)
CPU Hexa-core (2×3.78 GHz + 4)
GPU Apple GPU (6-core graphics)
Card slot No
Internal 128GB 8GB RAM, 256GB 8GB RAM, 512GB 8GB RAM, 1TB 8GB RAM
Triple 48 MP, f/1.8, 24mm (wide), 1/1.28″, 1.22µm, dual pixel PDAF, sensor-shift OIS
12 MP, f/2.8, 77mm (telephoto), 1.0µm, PDAF, OIS, 3x optical zoom
12 MP, f/2.2, 13mm, 120˚ (ultrawide), 1/2.55″, 1.4µm, dual pixel PDAF
TOF 3D LiDAR scanner (depth)
Features Dual-LED dual-tone flash, HDR (photo/panorama)
Video 4K@24/25/30/60fps, 1080p@25/30/60/120/240fps, 10-bit HDR, Dolby Vision HDR (up to 60fps), ProRes, Cinematic mode (4K@24/30fps), 3D (spatial) video, stereo sound rec.
Single 12 MP, f/1.9, 23mm (wide), 1/3.6″, PDAF, OIS
SL 3D, (depth/biometrics sensor)
Features HDR, Cinematic mode (4K@24/30fps)
Video 4K@24/25/30/60fps, 1080p@25/30/60/120fps, gyro-EIS
Loudspeaker Yes, with stereo speakers
3.5mm jack No
WLAN Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/6e, dual-band, hotspot
Bluetooth 5.3, A2DP, LE
Positioning GPS (L1+L5), GLONASS, GALILEO, BDS, QZSS, NavIC
USB USB Type-C 3.0, DisplayPort
Sensors Face ID, accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass, barometer
Ultra Wideband 2 (UWB) support
Emergency SOS via satellite (SMS sending/receiving)
Type Li-Ion, non-removable
Charging Wired, 50% in 30 min (advertised)
15W wireless (MagSafe)
7.5W wireless (Qi)
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