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Xiaomi 13T Pro Review: The New Flagship Killer is Here!

Xiaomi started off as a company which focuses primarily on budget-centric smartphones that offer exceptionally value-for-money. However, recent years have seen the company getting increasingly known in the upper-end sector that was once dominated by the likes of Apple and Samsung.

One of the key catalyst for the company’s success can be attributed to it’s continuous commitment to bring the best hardware to consumers at a more accessible price point compared to other big brands. Xiaomi calls that ”honest pricing” and it’s precisely what makes them popular among smartphone enthusiasts.

Xiaomi 13T Pro Design -2

The new Xiaomi 13T Pro is one such device that offers you superb value for your money. Thanks to Xiaomi Singapore, I’d gotten a chance to test out the Xiaomi 13T Pro for slightly more than two weeks and here are some of my final thoughts on this exciting piece of hardware.

Design & Display

The Xiaomi 13T Pro had obviously gone through some major redesign to arrive in this fresh new design that looks totally different from last year’s Xiaomi 12T Pro (Review). The most notable change lies in the design of the rear camera housing which is now square in shape and has a new Leica branding which undeniably makes the whole camera system looks more professional.

Xiaomi 13T Pro Design -1

Compared to last year’s Xiaomi 12T Pro, the new 13T Pro also feels slightly smaller in size since it’s now shorter, thinner and slimmer. As someone with a medium-sized palm, the Xiaomi 13T Pro fits perfectly on my palm which makes it ideal for single-handed use. Likewise, the adoption of glass back also makes the phone feels a tad more premium on hand.

The model I had for review comes in a Black color paint job which gives the phone a classy and elegant outlook. However, having a glossy finish naturally means it’ll attract quite a bit of fingerprints and smudges along the way. Still, it shouldn’t be much of a concern since they can be wiped off fairly easily.

Xiaomi 13T Pro Design -3

Over on the front side, the Xiaomi 13T Pro sports a spacious 6.67” AMOLED display which offers one of the best viewing experience you can get in this price range. It features an ultra-sharp 1220 x 2712 pixels screen resolution along with a super-fast 144Hz refresh rate which makes scrolling and animations felt buttery-smooth.

@playfuldroid Xiaomi 13T Pro hands-on ? #Xiaomk13TPro #Xiaomi13T #Xiaomi13TSeries #Xiaomi #Smartphone ? GANGSTERS – Emmett Zetto & Talentless

To sweeten up the deal, the display itself also supports an impressive 12-bit color depth as well as a wide DCI-P3 color gamut coverage which helps to ensure accurate color reproduction on the screen, leading to a more realistic and immersive graphical experience when playing games or watching your favorite Netflix contents.

Xiaomi 13T Pro Design -4

Other than that. let’s not forget that the Xiaomi 13T Pro also boasts a mind-blowing peak brightness that goes up to 2,600 nits in auto brightness mode. That’s almost trice as high as last year’s Xiaomi 12T Pro, and is also much brighter than other high-end devices including the iPhone 15 Pro Max and the Galaxy S23 Ultra.

Rounding out the front package is an extra layer of Gorilla Glass 5 which further protects the screen against any accidental drops or scratches. Speaking of durability, the Xiaomi 13T Pro is also IP68-certified for dust and water resistance. This is definitely a nice upgrade over the IP53 rating on the Xiaomi 12T Pro.

Performance

Sitting at the heart of the phone is none other than MediaTek’s latest Dimensity 9200 mobile platform which boasts almost equivalent performance as Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset as far as benchmarking scores are concerned.

In day-to-day usage, the Dimensity 9200 chipset has the calibre to provide a fantastic user experience with rapid app loading and smooth multi-tasking when working across several apps simultaneously in MIUI 14’s Split-screen or Multi-window mode. Even when working on more resource-intensive workloads like video editing and mobile gaming, the phone also performs superbly-well without any tinge of lag.

In fact, it’s stable performance can be partly attributed to it’s efficient heat dissipation and cool response thanks to the inclusion of an advanced cooling system which features a much improved 5000mm² VC stainless steel soaking plate. This is actually important as it helps to eliminate the risk of thermal throttling by keeping the phone cool especially during prolonged gaming sessions.

Memory-wise, the Xiaomi 13T Pro is available in both 12GB+512GB and 16GB+1TB configurations in the local market. For most users, including myself, the 12GB+512GB model is more than good enough for all our multi-tasking and storage needs. But if you’re one of those who tend to save plenty of media contents on the phone, then the 16GB+1TB model will probably be a more worthy option.

Cameras

As with any other Xiaomi smartphones, mobile photography remains one of the most exciting aspect of the new Xiaomi 13T Pro. This time round, the Xiaomi 13T Pro’s camera system is jointly developed with German optic specialist Leica, making it the first numerical ”T” series smartphone to feature a Leica co-developed camera system.

Xiaomi 13T Pro Design -5

In terms of hardware, the Xiaomi 13T Pro comes with an upgraded triple-camera system lead by a 50 megapixels (f/1.9 aperture) main camera which uses a high-end Sony IMX707 imaging sensor with a large 1/1.28” sensor size for better low-light performance. Regardless of lighting condition, the main camera never fails to capture gorgeous-looking photos with excellent contrast and accurate color reproduction that makes them look flattering and realistic.

Xiaomi 13T Pro Photo Sample -1
Xiaomi 13T Pro Photo Sample -2
Xiaomi 13T Pro Photo Sample -3
Xiaomi 13T Pro Photo Sample -4

Just like the company’s flagship Xiaomi 13 Pro (Review), the 13T Pro’s main camera is also equipped with Leica’s professional optical lens that help to solve ghosting and glare, and producing excellent rendering even in extreme environments. Coupled with a capable night mode system and a well-stabilized camera, the Xiaomi 13T Pro outperforms many other smartphone models in the same price category when it comes to low-light photography.

Hardware-aside, the new Leica partnership also drafts in several exclusive features to heighten your overall mobile photography experience. These include features such as Leica’s custom photographic styles, Leica’s exclusive filters as well as Leica’s custom watermark.

Xiaomi 13T Pro 5x Zoom
5x Zoom Sample
Xiaomi 13T Pro 10x Zoom
10x Zoom Sample
Xiaomi 13T Pro 15x Zoom
15x Zoom Sample

Main camera aside, the phone also features a really impressive 50 megapixels (f/1.9 aperture) telephoto camera that offers up to 20x digital zoom. Compared to macro camera, this is certainly a much more useful feature which often comes in handy when you need to see tiny wordings on faraway subjects such as a billboard or a sign board. As such, it’s no doubt a good news that Xiaomi had finally ditched the mediocre macro camera for a telephoto camera on the new 13T Pro.

Xiaomi 13T Pro Ultra-Wide Sample -1
Xiaomi 13T Pro Ultra-Wide Sample -2

As for landscape photography, the Xiaomi 13T Pro also has a usable 12 megapixels (f/2.2 aperture) ultra-wide camera that’s able to capture pretty good-looking photos with respectable amount of details and dynamic range despite being a small step down from the main camera.

Battery & Charging

To keep the lights on, the Xiaomi 13T Pro is backed by a gargantuan 5,000mAh battery which easily provides me with more than a day’s battery life even with several hours of gameplay during my daily commuting. And for those who use the phone only for simple tasks like texting and social media consumption, you won’t be surprised to see yourself getting up to two day’s worth of battery life.

Similar to the company’s flagship Xiaomi 13 Pro, the 13T Pro also features an ultra-fast 120W HyperCharge wired charging technology that’s able to top a completely flat battery from 0 to 100% in merely 20 minutes. That’s even quicker than the already-impressive OPPO Reno10 Pro+ (Review).

Verdict

With a starting price of just S$949, the Xiaomi 13T Pro emerged as a key contender for the best smartphone under S$1,000. It beats many other competing models in the same price segment when it comes to screen quality, smartphone performance as well as charging speed. Apart from that, it’s Leica co-developed camera system also provides it an additional edge in terms of photo quality and features.

For those who’re interested, the Xiaomi 13T Pro is available for purchase in Singapore at S$949 and S$1,099 respectively for the 12GB+512GB and 16GB+1TB variants.

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