Display Measurement

The screen of the iPhone SE shouldn’t be much different to that of the iPhone 8. It’s still an LCD IPS display, but it’s also one of the best on the market, even though the resolution is quite low. 

We move on to the display calibration and fundamental display measurements of the iPhone SE screen. As always, we thank X-Rite and SpecraCal, as our measurements are performed with an X-Rite i1Pro 2 spectrophotometer, with the exception of black levels which are measured with an i1Display Pro colorimeter. Data is collected and examined using Portrait Display's CalMAN software.

Display Measurement - Maximum Brightness

In terms of brightness, the iPhone SE comes in at a maximum of 675 nits, which is in line with Apple’s previous generation LCD devices. It’s not quite as bright as the OLED iPhone 11’s and this can be noticeable in bright daylight, but it’s otherwise a very acceptable result.

Portrait Displays CalMAN

Portrait Displays CalMAN

In terms of greyscale calibration, minus a gamma that’s slightly too high and by a bit off with slightly darker tones, the color accuracy of the iPhone SE is dead-on. Whites come in at 6492K is almost perfect, and in general the color error is below a dEITP of 1.

Portrait Displays CalMAN

Saturation calibration is also extremely good, with only a quite larger overshoot towards the higher saturation reds.

Portrait Displays CalMAN

Portrait Displays CalMAN

In the GMB test, the display is incredibly accurate with a color error of only 0.99 dEITP, only slightly worsened by the very slightly off gamma and darker tones for a total of 2.12 dEITP.

Overall, the iPhone SE’s display is in line with what we’ve seen on the iPhone 8. It’s amongst the best LCD screens in the market, even though by now it’s been outpaced in terms of brightness output and evidently resolution.

Camera - Quick Evaluation (Outdated) Battery Life - Matching the iPhone 8


View All Comments

  • Deicidium369 - Sunday, April 26, 2020 - link

    Meh I guess poor people need phone too. Too bad they have to get Apple Reply
  • euskalzabe - Friday, April 24, 2020 - link

    To be fair, every other review (I've read 6 so far) had a much better experience with the camera. It's likely the sample AT received might have been camera-defective. Reply
  • michael2k - Friday, April 24, 2020 - link

    The people who will buy this phone probably don't see the excitement either. Just like people who buy Corollas or Civics don't see the excitement in their cars; they don't want an exciting car, they just want a reasonably good car.

    So in that sense, it doesn't matter that this was a world class design years ago, it just matters that it promises 5 years of OS support, 3 years of reasonably battery life, 10 hours of battery use, $399 price point, and smaller size, as well as compatibility with their existing 5 year old phone.

    My sister in law has a 5 year old iPhone. My daughter has a 4 year old iPhone. Both are likely candidates for this phone because it's cheap and good enough.

    You can argue there are plenty of Android phones that are cheap and good enough, but those phones don't get 4 years of OS upgrades.
  • cha0z_ - Wednesday, August 5, 2020 - link

    mmm 6s is already guaranteed 6 years with ios14 (it will be supported fully to atleast September 2021) + apple still releases security updates for iphones as old as 4s, so you are wrong - the support is even better than you present it + new battery is 50$ original. Reply
  • Retycint - Friday, April 24, 2020 - link

    So a summary of the review: great chipset, great screen with thick bezels, decent battery life, decent camera. In contrast to Android mid-rangers with great battery life, good screen with thin-ish bezels, decent camera, decent chipset.

    This makes the iPhone SE really good value, compared to most Androids at the same price range, but not necessarily an instant buy especially for people who don't need the chipset prowess (social media/youtube etc)
  • shabby - Friday, April 24, 2020 - link

    One thing those android mid-rangers lack will be 5 years of software updates, that and a high end soc.
    Kudos to Apple, you're turn google... but who are we kidding.
  • crimson117 - Friday, April 24, 2020 - link

    That's a great point, 5 years updates and a chipset that should keep up with those updates. Reply
  • duploxxx - Friday, April 24, 2020 - link

    5 years of updates that will make it 10% slower every year and remove 10% battery life every year.

    I am so happy you are convinced that updates is all you need….

    try lineageOS and see how many updates and android versions are available for ARM cpu . My oneplus one backup device is running lineageOS 17.1 that is android 10... a 2013 device and still as fast as day 1.... good look with your 5y speedy IOS updates.
  • haukionkannel - Friday, April 24, 2020 - link

    When we get Android phone that get those updates without loaderfu... Then I would be impressed. Now it is two to three years and after that you have to do things that 99% of phone users don`t know how. Don`t get me wrong. LineageOS is food thing. It just should be automatic option without need the user to do a thing! Reply
  • trparky - Friday, April 24, 2020 - link

    Once again you prove that your average tech enthusiast is out of touch with the average person on the street. Yes, you can say that you can load LineageOS but how many average Joe's are actually going to load it let alone know how to load it? Not many.

    Your average person doesn't know how to do that so for those kinds of people this iPhone SE (2020 version) ticks every single box while being a low-priced device with guaranteed software updates for at least five years. This is a serious win for people who aren't geeks and nerds.

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