OPINION: When faced with upgrading from my old handset, I had an abundance of choice from the brilliant Pixel 7 Pro to the slimline Galaxy Z Flip 4, but in the end it was the iPhone 14 that stood as a cut above the rest, all because of one feature: 4K Cinematic Mode.
Even though the iPhone has had some serious competition from the likes of Google and Samsung in the camera department, Apple has easily led the way when it comes to shooting video on a smartphone. From my experience, no other company has come close to matching the iPhone’s chops as a portable camcorder.
As someone who enjoys shooting and editing videos in their spare time (read: part-time YouTuber who likes to rant at a camera), I’m always intrigued by ways that I can condense my setup so that the process of filming feels less cumbersome. For the longest time I’ve been using the Canon EOS M50 to shoot my videos, but when I found out that a noticeable jump in video quality from a fellow content creator was down to the iPhone 14, I knew I had to make the switch.
If you’re unfamiliar with Apple’s Cinematic Mode, then the best way to describe it is like Portrait Mode but for video. The iPhone’s software applies a digital but highly impressive bokeh effect around a subject, adding a cinematic layer to your footage that gives the mode its name.
The feature was first introduced in the iPhone 13 range but that was capped at 1080p and didn’t particularly wow the Trusted Reviews team (myself included), but the leap to 4K on the iPhone 14 has allowed Cinematic Mode to deliver on its promise of offering eye-catching footage.
I think a lot of content creators (and camera enthusiasts) might scoff at the idea of using anything other than a dedicated camera for filming but now that I’ve made the jump, I don’t see myself going back anytime soon. Part of this is because Apple has also created a vlogger-friendly ecosystem around the iPhone.
When it comes time to film, I make sure that the shot is lined up correctly via the camera controls on my Apple Watch and after the fact, I simply AirDrop the footage over to my iPad where I can edit 4K video, lag-free on LumaFusion. You don’t even need a high-powered M2 iPad Pro for this either – I’ve been using the base-level iPad for editing and never witnessed any slowdown.
If you’re thinking of using 2023 as the year for getting into content creation then I highly recommend investing in an iPhone/iPad combo as opposed to a dedicated camera and a pricey laptop. It might sound absurd but trust me – it works.