How iPhone 7 compares to a pro movie camera

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No, it's not a fair face off. But it's pretty intriguing.
Photo: Potato Jet

Apple loves to talk about the quality of its current-generation iPhone camera, but how does it stack up against a professional movie camera?

In a new video, L.A.-based filmmaker and YouTuber Potato Jet, shoots footage with both the iPhone 7 and the $82,100 Arri Alexa camera, the same camera favored by the likes of Steven Spielberg.

It’s a totally unfair contest, but a pretty intriguing video nonetheless. Check it out below.

Now, of course the comparison between iPhone and movie camera isn’t fair. The iPhone camera is one feature on a sub-$1,000 device designed to be quickly and easily used by everyday users, meaning that a fairer comparison would be to a decent SLR that costs roughly the same amount.

The iPhone isn’t supposed to be a rival to professional movie cameras, but it has found a use — including among professional photographers — due to its lightweight portability that makes it easier to snap images or video in a way that would never be possible with a professional camera.

It’s also a camera which has proven good enough to be used professionally in some contexts, as with the 2015 Sundance movie Tangerine, which was shot on an iPhone 5s.

Ultimately, the iPhone is doing what Apple has done for years: taking a creative tool and making a “good enough” version accessible to the masses. No, we’re never to reach the point where Game of Thrones is shot on a basic iPhone. But anyone who remembers the first cellphone cameras not all that long ago surely has to be impressed by what Apple manages to squeeze into the tiny form factor of an iPhone.

What do you think of the iPhone vs. Arri Alexa face off? Leave your comments below.