Xiaomi 14 Review | Geek Lifestyle

Definitely built for content creators!

ONE Store Beta Now Available

It’s been a while since we’ve tested a Xiaomi flagship device here at UnGeek and we’re thoroughly thankful to the brand for lending out their latest Xiaomi 14 device to us to tinker and test with for a couple of weeks. In the past, Xiaomi has been known as the brand to dish out famed category-killer devices (mid-range killer, flagship-killer) but that’s all in the past and hasn’t been the same way since the release of the Xiaomi 12 series 2 years back.

In 2024, what does the brand look like? We don’t have to look further than their current flagship lineup, and the Xiaomi 14 is as best an indicator as ever.

Geek-sthetic

The Jade Green variant of the Xiaomi 14 looks like a little gem on-hand. The compact flagship smartphone stands at just around 6” tall and about almost 3” wide (152.8mm x 71.5mm x 8.2mm to be exact) and has a glossy glass finish for its rear cover. While a definite fingerprint magnet, the 3D curved glass back and chrome-polished sides gives the device a smooth hand-feel. Even if the entire phone is finished in a glossy glass cover, it’s not superbly slippery (believe us there are phones that are just impossible to hold without a non-slip silicon cover and the Xiaomi 14 isn’t one of them).

Yup, the Jade Green has a super reflective surface.

The flat display on the Xiaomi 14 and the compact form-factor oddly reminds us of the traditional candy bar figure of Apple’s iPhones of yesteryears but spruced up for today’s fashion-forward sensibilities.

 

Binge-Watching Factor

Even with just a 6.36” screen, the Xiaomi 14 offers media in a big bright way thanks to its custom CB AMOLED display panels. The 120Hz LTPO AMOLED display provides vibrant colors regardless of lighting conditions as the screens can go as high as 3000 nits (useful when viewing materials under the sun).

Dolby Vision in support and Dolby Atmos-supported dual speakers in tow, run your favorite, tv shows, clips, or movies with the Xiaomi 14 and have an immersive entertainment experience that can be conveniently tucked in your pocket once done.

 

Gaming Prowess

The Xiaomi 14 is powered by the 4nm Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 and 12GB of LPDDR5X RAM. The configuration we have for the Philippine market lets you choose between a unit with 256GB internal storage or 512GB internal storage – both of which are UFS 4.0 for immediate access to stored data.

For a configuration like this you can be sure that the phone will play pretty much any game at max graphical setting. We’ve tested it with our usual roster of games namely Mobile Legends: Bang-Bang, Asphalt 9, and Genshin Impact to name a few and so far, all performed exceptionally well.

Genshin Impact sets the default graphic settings at medium but as always, you can clock this baby up to increase framerates and you’re still going to enjoy jitter-free gaming for the most part.

Where the Xiaomi 14 dips in performance would be thermal management.

It’s odd, because for gaming thermals run pretty well. With the standard silicon case on, you’ll feel the phone get particularly warm by your 3rd game of MLBB or about an hour in on Genshin. So thermal management on gaming, so far, has been quite okay.

For some reason, thermals become terrible when you use the phone for other functions like photography and videography.

 

Geek Photoshoot Capabilities

This is where this compact smartphone shines – Photography and videography. With the Leica partnership in full throttle, Xiaomi is pulling all the stops in ensuring that you have one of the best compact devices fit for all your content creation needs.

To start with, the phone is equipped with a triple-Leica rear camera system: you have a 50MP Main Shooter with 1/1.31” Light Fusion 900 Sensor, a 50MP Leica Ultrawide, and a 50MP Leica Floating Telephoto Camera. This triumvirate of Leica-infused cameras will allow you to create colorfully vivid, or artistically natural images all color-approved by Leica.

But as with anything Leica, we had a blast taking photos using the Leica B/W filter for extra rich contrast and film grain effect.

What we loved with the camera app of Xiaomi is the wide range of in-app editing features. We were crafting mock posters after mock posters from our impromptu street photo session during a trip to the north.

We even entered some into our official “unofficial Xiaomemes” catalogue:

Point is, with a camera system that’s already good, having a quick editing feature within the native camera app was such an inspired touch from the brand. It really does help make one want to create more content than usual – and that’s just on the photography side of things.

The videography side is crazy good as well!

Unleash your inner cinematographer with the Xiaomi 14 – your pocket cinema camera of sorts. If you’ve read our vivo V30 Pro 5G review, you know how obsessed I am with phones that can mimic cinematic cameras. And while ZEISS anamorphic lens bokeh will always be reserved for team vivo, the Xioami 14 has a Movie Mode feature as well where video aspect ratio shifts to a wider-screen format and bokeh seems more pronounced.

You can even choose between classic and widescreen (anamorphic) – or at least that’s what the icons indicate. I tried using this feature to see if I can replicate the elongated bokeh flares but it just wouldn’t come out as pronounced as I would like.

Creative bokeh aside, there is a clearer subject tracker mechanism with the Xiaomi 14. The phone automatically picks up faces or subjects of interest that you can lock focus for your tracking shots. The combined OIS and EIS of the device helps ensure clarity of focus and minimize unwanted shakes and blurs. This made it easier to do handheld shooting.

Here’s a quick sample video of various scenarios where I used the Movie Mode from the Xiaomi 14.

There’s even a teleprompter feature baked into the the native camera app! They really thought of pretty much everything a content creator will need. Overall, using the Xiaomi 14 as a prime content creation machine has been entirely enjoyable!

If there’s one drawback, it would be the thermals. For some reason, taking quick photos and videos using the Xiaomi 14 fired the unit up to ridiculously scorching degrees. I would take a few photos using the phone, put it on my pocket then suddenly feel a burn happening on my things.

We already reported this to Xiaomi Philippines and we’re not sure if it’s just our unit or a bunch of other units as well. I’m hoping that a security patch could help resolve this since the Xiaomi 14 boasts of having improved thermal management than previous generation.

 

Everyday Reliability

Even with a compact form-factor, the Xiaomi 14 is equipped with a large 4610mAh battery with a 90W HyperCharge capability supported by supported by the Xiaomi Surge P2 charging chipset and Xiaomi Surge G1 battery management chipset. This configuration ensures that you can charge your Xiaomi 14 quickly (and safely) from 0 to 100% in about half an hour’s time. The battery management system helps with decreasing battery degradation so you can have optimal power performance for years to come.

As with most flagship devices, the Xiaomi 14 is IP68 rated for dust and water proofing.  No need to worry if you accidentally drop your phone in water or bring it with you as you sweat out in the gym.

Operating on a much cleaner (and seamless) Xiaomi HyperOS and Android 14, various Ai functionalities are yours with a few key strokes and taps on your phone.

 

Final Geek Lifestyle Verdict

The Xiaomi 14 is one of the best compact smartphones in the market to date – something that not a lot of brands offer and something that Xiaomi saw to fill. While smaller in form-factor, the design, materials used, and overall quality built delivers an exceptional flagship experience. If you’ve been looking to level up your content creation game, then you may want to give the Xiaomi 14 a chance. The triple Leica rear camera and the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 Chipset rightfully justifies the relatively steep price of admission at SRP Php 45,999 for the 12GB/ 256GB version.

 

Xiaomi 14 Specs:

  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 (4nm)
  • Adreno 730
  • 12GB LPDDR5X RAM
  • 36”-inch LTPO AMOLED (2670×1200) with 120Hz refresh rate, Dolby Vision and HDR10+ support and up to 3000 nits peak brightness
  • 256GB / 512GB UFS 4.0 Storage
  • LEICA VARIO-SUMMILUX Cameras
  • 50MP f/1.6 wide Light Fusion 900 Sensor + 50MP f/2.2 ultrawide + 50MP f/2.0 Leica floating telephoto rear camera setup (8K @24fps, 4K@24/30/60fps (HDR10+), 1080p @30/120/240/960fps)
  • 32MP f/2.0 wide front camera (HDR10+ recording)
  • Quad Speakers (Dolby Atmos) tuned by Harman Kardon
  • 3G, LTE, 5G Dual SIM
  • WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, under display fingerprint scanner, USB Type-C
  • 4610mAh battery with 90W HyperCharge support
  • Corning Gorilla Glass Victus
  • Android 14 with HyperOS
  • Black, Jade Green