Product review

19 Jun, 2020

iPhone 11 Pro Max

Tested by: Russ



Weight w/ case:


Miles used:


Times replaced:


See it in action on the PCT

See it in action on the RV


As a YouTuber, I need a phone that’s got performance and quality with good battery life. It’s got to be tough, water-resistant and have good storage. The iPhone 11 Pro Max was an obvious choice and I’ve used it for my longest hikes including the Rota Vicentina and the Pacific Crest Trail.


Why the iPhone 11 Pro Max?

The iPhone 11 Pro Max is the largest, most powerful phone that Apple currently manufactures. The three lenses give me the versatility I need to get the shot I want and fast. Interchangeable while shooting, it makes it so easy to get the composition and crop I want at the push of a button. The autofocus is lightning fast and I use it for vlogging, shooting landscapes and getting some incredible stills. It’s 3 cameras in one and has all the features and processing power to shoot all I need and edit on the move.


How well does it work?

I edited all of my videos while on the trail and in towns on the PCT. The 256GB storage capacity really helped speed up the process by eliminating the need to download footage from the cloud. The multiple shooting speeds produced crisp slow motion at 4K as well, meaning the storage capacity and processing speed is of utmost importance. I was able to edit full 4K 60fps footage incredibly fast and would render out on Lumafusion in seconds. It’s even faster than my Macbook Pro at video editing.


Footage quality

Crisp and clear on all shooting modes and the focal length of each of the lenses is perfect and gives a very professional feel.


Sound quality

One of the downsides with the iPhone 11 Pro Max is the built-in sound quality. For my next thru-hike, I’ll be getting an external directional microphone to fit into the phone to get better quality vlogging sound.



This phone has the longest battery life of any iPhone previously on the market. I was able to get more than a full day’s use while shooting footage and stills, as well as using Guhook and Viewranger. If I left it on Airplane Mode and didn’t use it, the battery would likely last for days.



The iPhone by itself is very delicate, made of glass on the front and back and it’s easily scratched and would shatter when dropped. I use the Tech21 case which is still on my iPhone and it’s been dropped multiple times and the phone’s survived every time, it really works. I also use the JETech screen protector which after 450 miles is only just in need of a replacement.


Value for money

This is an expensive phone for sure, but the quality and versatility you get with the camera is insane, it’s the best camera in my kit list for these reasons and while it’s not cheap, it’s the perfect investment for any hiker YouTuber, especially if you already use other Apple products in the ecosystem just like me.


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  • Durability w/ case 90% 90%
  • Image quality 90% 90%
  • Charge time 80% 80%
  • Run time 80% 80%
  • Sound quality 60% 60%
  • Value to weight ratio 95% 95%
  • Value to for money 50% 50%


  • Powerful
  • Water restistant
  • Fast
  • Easy to use
  • Long-life battery
  • Fast-charging
  • 3 lenses
  • Perfect for VLogging your thru-hike
  • Use Lumafusion for editing


  • Needs a case and screen protector
  • Expensive



From £1098.99 on Amazon


272g (9.59oz)



Water resistance:

4 metres for up to 30 minutes, IP68)

Shooting capacity:

4K video up to 60fps


  • 6.5-inch Super Retina XDR OLED display
  • Water and dust resistant
  • Triple-camera system with 12MP Ultra Wide, Wide, and Telephoto cameras; Night mode, Portrait mode
  • 12MP TrueDepth front camera with Portrait Mode, 4K video, and Slo-Mo
  • Face ID for secure authentication and Apple Pay
  • A13 Bionic chip with third-generation Neural Engine
  • Fast charge with 18W adapter included
  • Wireless charging

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