Xiaomi 14 Ultra: Continuing the Photographic Legacy of Panasonic CM1Xiaomi 14 Ultra: Continuing the Photographic Legacy of Panasonic CM1
Xiaomi’s 14 Ultra is a remarkable phone evolution with a nostalgic twist:

Reviving a Photographic Legacy: Xiaomi 14 Ultra and the Panasonic CM1 Connection

In a recent review, I dubbed the Xiaomi 14 Ultra as “the best camera phone I’ve ever used,” drawing intriguing parallels to a smartphone released nearly a decade ago.

Panasonic CM1: Pioneer of Smartphone Photography

Back in 2014, I had the privilege of reviewing the Panasonic CM1, a trailblazer in smartphone photography. Featuring a substantial 1-inch type sensor—a rarity at the time—the CM1 boasted Leica optics that captured images beyond the reach of its contemporaries. It functioned not just as a phone, but essentially as a compact camera.

A Photographer’s Dream Phone

The CM1 was, to me, the ultimate device. Its exceptional camera negated the need for a separate camera in my bag. However, despite its photographic prowess, the surrounding technology fell short with limited raw support and outdated software, leading to disappointment when the phone eventually faded from the market.

Xiaomi 14 Ultra: A Modern Interpretation

Fast forward to 2024, and Xiaomi seems to have resurrected the spirit of the CM1 with its 14 Ultra model. The similarities are striking—both sport sizable 1-inch type sensors (albeit not truly measuring an inch diagonally), Leica-engineered lenses, variable apertures, and physical camera buttons when using Xiaomi’s camera grip.

The Resemblance

When clad in its photography case, the Xiaomi 14 Ultra bears a striking resemblance to the CM1, characterized by textured black backs, silver rails, and a prominent circular camera unit housing.

A Nostalgic Upgrade

Xiaomi’s revival of the CM1 concept is a welcome surprise, as the 14 Ultra excites as much as its predecessor did in 2014. The camera capabilities are truly impressive, benefiting from advancements in overall smartphone technology. Operating the Xiaomi is effortless with its modern processor, and the expansive 6.73-inch display is a vast improvement over the CM1’s modest 4.7-inch screen.

Advancements in Raw Support

Moreover, the industry now embraces DNG raw support as a standard, enabling seamless processing of raw files on a multitude of Android apps—a far cry from the frustrating limitations faced with the CM1.

Conclusion: Xiaomi 14 Ultra as the Spiritual Successor

The Xiaomi 14 Ultra emerges as the rightful heir to the Panasonic CM1, leveraging its legacy in a time where technology and features harmoniously coexist. Waiting a decade for this evolution was undoubtedly worth it.
Credits: cnet.com

By Tom Brokaw

Hello, I'm journalist and author of the "insiderbez.com"

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