iPhone SE 2020 review: Is it worth buying for photography?

iPhone SE 2020 review: Is it worth buying for photography?

5/5 - (34 votes)

When it’s time to upgrade your phone, getting the best model possible doesn’t necessarily mean you have to break the bank. In fact, there are a ton of budget-friendly options, and the iPhone SE 2020 is one of those. This phone may have fewer bells and whistles than other current models, but that means it’s also considerably cheaper.

You’re probably wondering what features you’ll be missing out on if you go with an iPhone SE, and how well the camera stands up to the competition. Don’t worry — our iPhone SE 2020 review will cover all that and more, so keep reading!

Before you get iPhone SE

Before you even get your new phone, the first thing you should do is clean up all of the junk and clutter that’s wasting storage space on your current iPhone. And odds are, your photo library is the main offender. Thankfully, you can use the app Gemini Photos to scan your library to help you quickly get rid of duplicates, blurry pics, screenshots, and more.

Cleaning up your pictures is easy. To get rid of your duplicates, just follow the steps below after downloading Gemini Photos from the App Store.

  1. Open Gemini Photos.
  2. Tap Duplicates. Your duplicate pictures will be grouped together.
  3. Choose a group of duplicates to select which versions you want to delete.
  4. Tap Delete [x] Duplicates.
  5. After you’re done with duplicates, tap Your Library and clean out other categories like Similar, Blurry, or Screenshots.

It’s important to remember that Gemini Photos doesn’t permanently delete your pictures. So when you’re done cleaning with the app, open Photos and navigate to Albums > Recently Deleted > Select > Delete All. That will remove the pics from your phone and free up space.

The iPhone SE 2020 camera

The most notable difference between iPhone SE camera and other new iPhone models is that it only has a single wide-angle lens. But just because it only has one lens doesn’t mean you should write the camera off entirely. Here are some more detailed stats about it:

  • 12 MP camera
  • ƒ/1.8 aperture
  • Up to 5x digital zoom
  • Portrait mode with advanced bokeh control
  • Portrait Lighting with six effects
  • Next-generation Smart HDR

Does iPhone SE 2020 have Night mode?

Unlike the other current models, iPhone SE 2020 doesn’t support Night mode. This is unfortunate, because the camera doesn’t perform great in low light as a result.

Can you take underwater photos with iPhone SE (2nd generation)?

Technically, yes. But it’s important to note that iPhone SE (2nd generation) isn’t actually waterproof. It has an IP67 rating which means it can be submerged beneath 1 meter of water for up to 30 minutes.

Design and display

iPhone SE takes a more classic approach to its design and display. The screen is a Retina HD LCD and measures only 4.7 inches. But where iPhone SE differs from other current models is that it still has a physical Home button on the front. This means you use Touch ID instead of Face ID.

Here are some other stats on the physical dimensions of iPhone SE:

  • Height: 5.45 inches
  • Width: 2.65 inches
  • Depth: 0.29 inches
  • Weight: 5.22 ounces

Storage and battery life

While the camera is the thing that will have the most direct impact on your photos, your storage and battery life will also affect your experience. And luckily, iPhone SE boasts impressive battery performance. It’s billed to get up to 13 hours of video playback, which isn’t bad compared to iPhone 12 Mini’s 15 hours.

And while there are few things more frustrating than running out of space on your iPhone, this limitation can actually prevent you from taking more pictures and videos than needed. Here’s a look at what storage options are available for iPhone SE:

Can you add memory to iPhone SE?

Like other iPhones, iPhone SE doesn’t have a memory expansion slot to add extra memory. That’s why, you’ll need to be conscientious of what storage size you choose when you buy it. Using Gemini Photos to trim some weight off your photo library is also a good idea.

Is 64 GB enough for the 2020 iPhone SE?

The answer to this question depends on how much space you’re currently using. You can check your current storage on iPhone by following these steps:

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Navigate to General > iPhone Storage.
Screenshot of the Settings app in iOS.

The iPhone SE 2020 price

iPhone SE is billed as the most affordable iPhone model. But the price depends on how much storage you choose. Its pricing and storage tiers start at $399 for 64 GB, then increase to $449 for 128 GB and $549 for 256 GB.

Is the iPhone SE 2020 worth buying?

If all you’re looking for is a budget-friendly iPhone, then yes — the second-generation iPhone SE is worth it. But if you’re more concerned about the quality of your pictures and videos, then no, it’s not really worth buying. The camera is fine but just doesn’t compare to some of the other new iPhone models. And you can even find used models of older iPhones with better cameras for about the same price.

There’s no denying that the 2020 version of iPhone SE is an incredible deal and will still take some good pictures. But at the end of the day, it’s just not at the same level as other current iPhone models.