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Xiaomi 12 Review: A Premium, No-Compromise Smartphone

Xiaomi 12

Xiaomi 12 is the brand's flagship smartphone, it's part of the Xiaomi 12 series, which packs impressive features into a compact design, while the 12 Pro is for those who want a larger display and more impressive hardware.

Xiaomi 12

The Xiaomi 12 is priced at ₱39,999 and has a lot of features including an AMOLED display, flagship performance, fast charging both wired and wireless, and photography capability. It's not a perfect smartphone, but it can deliver flagship performance.


Design and Build
The Xiaomi 12 is a small phone in comparison to the 12 Pro version, which has a larger chassis and screen. 

Xiaomi 12

Now that the majority of smartphones feature a 6.5-inch or larger display, the 6.28-inch screen appears to be somewhat tiny by today's standards. Nevertheless, it is an excellent choice for people looking for a more compact premium smartphone.

Xiaomi 12

Xiaomi 12 is just 69.9mm in width and weighs 180g, making it a pocket-friendly device. It's available in gray, purple, and blue. The Purple variant looks very luxurious, with a faint pink hue with a premium design.

"The Xiaomi 12 is a premium lightweight smartphone with a curved rounded shape and a solid build that makes it comfortable to hold."

Xiaomi 12

There is a 50-megapixel primary lens on the back of the device, which is complemented by a 13-megapixel ultra-wide angle camera and a 5-megapixel telephoto camera. Even with the protective case installed, it wobbles when laid on the table on its back due to the large camera bump. So It's best to get a third-party case that will protect the camera lens.

Xiaomi 12

The volume rocker and power button are located on the right side of the phone, making them easily accessible and it provides a satisfying click when pressed.

Xiaomi 12

The SIM tray, as well as the Type-C port, microphone, and speaker, are all located at the bottom of the phone. While the IR blaster, a second microphone, and a second speaker can be found at the top. The Symmetrical dual speakers are powered by Harman Kardon Dolby Atmos speakers.

The lack of a 3.5mm audio jack is a minor issue, as it requires the purchase of a Type-C adaptor if you wish to use wired earphones; although Bluetooth wireless earbuds are a more convenient alternative.

AMOLED Dot Display and Audio
The 6.28-inch Full HD+ OLED display on the Xiaomi 12 looks amazing and sharp. and it has a 20:9 aspect ratio. It features an AdaptiveSync at 120Hz that provides smooth playback and a vibrant, flicker-free screen. While touch sampling at up to 480Hz enhances the user experience particularly when gaming.

Xiaomi 12

The AMOLED display has low blue light, HDR10+, and Dolby Vision certification. Its maximum brightness is 1100 nits. In direct sunshine, tested it at 772 nits and 500 nits with automatic adjustment disabled and set to maximum. The screen performs smoothly but can only switch between 60Hz and 120Hz.

Xiaomi 12

With its TrueColor looks stunning and supports Dolby Vision, which enhances the richness and vibrant of the content while enchanting the details making it superior to standard AMOLED displays. Additionally, the display is scratch-resistant, thanks to Corning Gorilla Glass Victus protection.

Xiaomi 12

The display incorporates one of the fastest types of biometric authentication that we have tested; the scanning of the fingerprint is quick and accurate each and every time it is used.

The phone is equipped with stereo speakers, one on each end, which have been tuned by Harman Kardon and enable Dolby Atmos. The speakers are above quality, with an adequate volume level and good overall performance. However, the absence of a headphone jack and no USB-C to 3.5mm adaptor in the package is a slight disadvantage, is a minor drawback, but wireless earbuds can be used instead.

Specs and Performance
The Xiaomi 12 is powered by Qualcomm's most advanced mobile platform to date, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 clocked up to 3GHz. It's built on a 4nm process, that boosts GPU graphic capabilities by 30% and energy efficiency by 25% when compared to the previous generation. Its paired with Adreno 730 GPU for graphics, 12GB of LPDDR5 RAM, and 256GB UFS 3.1 of storage with no support for a microSD card for extra storage which is not a big deal since it has plenty of storage space.

Xiaomi 12

Given its flagship specs, the performance of the Xiaomi 12 is top-notch. The phone is capable of handling any apps and multitasking is very impressive. Switching between apps is really quick and thanks to its 5G support, the mobile connection is equally fast.

Benchmark scores are also impressive (see below).

AnTuTu – 899,966
CPU – 193,140
GPU – 389,188
MEM – 162,480
UX – 155,158
Geekbench – 1,139 (Single-core); 3,389 (Multi-core)
3D Mark Wild Life – 3,696

Xiaomi 12 gaming performance is also remarkable, with games like Free Fire, Apex Legends, Mortal Kombat, Genshin Impact, and other graphics-intensive games running flawlessly at the highest available graphics settings.

Xiaomi 12

"The Xiaomi 12 is an excellent smartphone for all types of users, it can easily outperform other brands in its category thanks to its powerful Chipset, plenty of RAM, large storage space, and sharp AMOLED display."

MIUI 13
The Xiaomi 12 is run on Android 12 and MIUI 13, the latest generation operating system that provides an overall improvement for a snappy user experience.

Xiaomi 12

It has a nice user interface, the new sidebar is easy to access and the new widgets can be personalized on the home screen. MIUI 13 supports different size widgets that include 4×4 size options.

The Sidebar is a handy tool to access your favorite apps and tools in floating windows with just a swipe, something similar to the sidebar that we have seen on Samsung One UI.

Xiaomi 12

It also supports live wallpapers that the company is calling “Super Wallpapers," a new Mind Maps feature in the Notes app, a Game Space that is a sort of a gaming mode with a control center for an enhanced gaming experience, and a new control center for the whole UI.

The MIUI 13 is a feature-rich skin; it offers a lot of personalization, is lightning-fast, and features eye-candy app icons.

Cameras
The Xiaomi 12 has a pro-grade triple camera setup, which includes a 50-megapixel main camera complemented with a 13-megapixel, ultra-wide lens, and a 5-megapixel telemacro lens.

Xiaomi 12

The primary camera is equipped with an IMX766 sensor, while the ultra-wide camera is coupled with an OmniVision sensor and offers a 123° field of view with an f/2.4 aperture. The tele-macro camera sensor has a 50mm equivalent focal length.

The primary camera is ideal for point-and-shoot use, as it's capable of handling any settings and producing photos with superb exposure, color accuracy, and minimal noise – even in low-light scenarios.

In the photo mode, the camera's pixel bins are lowered to 12 megapixels, but there is a dedicated 50-megapixel mode if you wish to use the full capabilities of the main sensor. However, due to the lack of a telephoto lens, this mode is recommended to be used in a well-lit environment.

Xiaomi 12

Using the ultrawide setting is also an excellent option, as the shot quality is crisp and the colors are vibrant. Other camera modes includes: Panorama, VLOG, Night, Slo motion, time-lapse, Movie effects, Dual video, and Clone.

The Clone mode is an interesting camera mode, this mode allows you to click 2 or more photos in a single shot at the same time or simply you can clone your subject in one photo.

The camera app is simple to use, but with a wide assortment of menu options, it can be rather confusing so some users specially those who are new to Android and MIUI 13, so it is best to familiarize yourself with its capabilities and features.

When it comes to videos, the Xiaomi 12 camera is capable of recording from 720P, 1080p, 4K, and 8K resolutions, and it has OIS (optical image stabilization) to keep the recordings stable and smooth even when you are filming while moving.

Xiaomi 12
It's one of the few smartphones today that has the capability of recording 8K videos at 24pfs. the downside is if you are recording on 8K resolution the OIS won't work, and it will have a large file size, a one-minute video will eat up 1GB of storage.

Sample Photos Below: 

Xiaomi12-sample8

Xiaomi12-sample4-night-wide

Xiaomi12-sample1

Xiaomi_12_Sample8

More sample photos here: Xiaomi 12 Sample Photos

Xiaomi 12 is one of the few smartphones available today that is capable of recording 8K videos at a frame rate of 24 frames per second. Shooting in 8K quality, optical image stabilization (OIS) will not work, and the resulting files will be very huge; storing a one-minute video will require1G of space compared to 4K videos that only have 400MB file size.

The 32-megapixel front-facing camera is capable of taking excellent selfies, and the portrait mode provides a pretty good blurred background that can be adjusted with a slider.

Battery Life and Charging
The Xiaomi 12 packs a 4500mAh battery, which is reasonable for a smartphone of this size. In the PCMark battery test, the Xiaomi 12 battery scored nine hours and 27 minutes which is quite good, but nothing spectacular.

Xiaomi 12

When used for typical everyday tasks, the battery can last the entire day; however, when playing games for an extended period of time at 120Hz with the screen brightness set to max, the battery will likely drain more quickly.

Good thing it charges quickly with the 67W and offers 50W wireless charging, which is quite handy, particularly if you forget to bring the charger with you. It also supports 10W reverse wireless charging which is excellent.

The 67W charger is capable of charging the battery to 60% in 15 minutes and to 100% in 39 minutes. In addition, it enables adaptive charging, which can learn your overnight charging habits and trickle charge the battery as you sleep so that it is fully charged by morning.

Pros
Compact premium design
Impressive AMOLED display
Outstanding performance
Excellent main camera
Fast wired and wireless charging
IR blaster
MIUI 13 featured pack

Cons
No IP rating
No telephoto lens
No audio port

Verdict
In many ways, the Xiaomi 12 is an appealing flagship smartphone. If you're looking for a device that isn't as big as today's average smartphone, this is an excellent option. But if you like a larger display, you can go for the Xiaomi 12 Pro.

With the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset, AMOLED screen with 120Hz refresh rate, and 67W fast charging, you have a solid mix of high-end hardware specs. Additionally, it has an excellent camera performance with a wide-angle lens and the telemacro lens is fun to use. However, it is not water-resistant, which is a minor drawback.

The Xiaomi 12 with 8GB + 256GB is priced at ₱39,999, its available at Xiaomi's official online and authorized retail stores nationwide.

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