Last updated: November 3, 2023 (Changelog)
The best camera phones are usually the best phones overall, and you'll mostly find flagships in this category - the likes of the latest Galaxies and iPhones typically deliver the highest image quality of the time.
Google Pixels may have lost their edge in computational photography but we still have one to recommend if you're after that Pixel look. Xiaomi and Oppo have made great strides in the camera field too and often offer unusual hardware that delivers outstanding image quality. Finally, there's also a camera phone to get if you're on a budget - non-flagships can take nice pictures too.
|256GB 8GB RAM
|512GB 8GB RAM
Apple has significantly improved its camera this year with the new iPhone 15 Pro Max and we believe it is the best phones for photography on the go right now. It delivers superb photo and videoe quality across the board, its 2x zoomed prowess is great and it has some neat features like Dolby Vision and Cinematic video capturing, ProRAW, cool automation like auto portraits and auto night mode.
One of the biggest improvements targets videographers and will go under the radar for the masses. We are talking about capturing 4K60 ProRes videos straight onto an external SSD drive or memory card, which might open use cases and workflows that have never been possible before.
Also, this is the best iPhone ever made, you know. It has a stunning design, an outstanding display, great performance, impressive speakers, pro-grade cameras with a consistently good photo and class-leading video quality, long battery life and likable if weird iOS.
Overall, the iPhone 15 Pro Max is the most versatile and consistently good and reliable smartphone for still and video photography out there. It is a point and shoot device, but it also allows for professional capturing and massive prost processing potential. And that is why we chose it to lead this part of our guide.Read full review
|256GB 8GB RAM
|256GB 12GB RAM
The Galaxy S23 Ultra has it all - a huge sensor main cam, an autofocusing ultrawide, and not one but two telephotos. And it does offer excellent selfies, too.
The main camera's 200MP Tetra2pixel sensor bins pixels 16-to-1 producing wide dynamic range in both good light and at night. The high-res imager also enables good 8K video recording.
Then, 3x zoom and up, the S23 Ultra excels thanks to its pair of tele cams. Both modules put up a great performance at their native focal lengths and in-between magnifications aren't too bad either. Going past the 10x level isn't out of the question, too.
The Ultra's ultrawide is one of the best that Samsung's put out to date and this year it produces even cleaner photos. It's sharp and delivers great quality, and it has autofocus, further extending its range of usability.
The 12MP selfie camera, which the S23 Ultra shares with the rest of the family, may be a nominal upgrade on the other models, but here it's a downgrade, compared to the 40MP unit on the S22 Ultra - nominally, again. In practice, you'd be getting more or less the same great selfies.
There is one thing with the Galaxy S23 Ultra and it is the excessive camera processing – its photos are over-sharpened and often over-saturated. This is what prevented it to keep its top cameraphone spot here.Read full review
|256GB 12GB RAM
The Xiaomi 13 Pro is a flagship that's so easy to love. Its ceramic design is beautiful and we do appreciate the ingress protection. Then there is one of the best displays in the industry - a 1440p OLED with 10-bit color depth, dynamic 120Hz refresh, and Dolby Vision support. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 and its great speed and stability are also praise-worthy.
The Xiaomi 13 Pro is a great cameraphones with a class-leading primary camera with superb photo and video quality and 2x lossless zoom. Then there is the incredibly powerful telephoto and telemacro camera, which excels across the board, too, and its closeups and portraits are very impressive. We can also praise the ultrawide balanced performance.
We have nothing but positive words for the rear camera setup as it is among the best money can buy you on a smartphone. But the dated selfie camera is not unworthy of a flagship, let alone a cameraphone. We hope this is the last time we see this 32MP Quad-Bayer camera, but somehow, we doubt that, unfortunately
Still, the Xiaomi 13 Pro is one of the easiest recommendations we've ever given despite its horrible grip experience (beauty has its price, obviously, but please, buy yourself a premium case). It delivers on every promise and every important aspect, and it is one of the most beautiful, powerful, and skillful devices we've used. It is jam-packed with cutting-edge smartphone and imaging technology, and it's worth every penny.Read full review
|256GB 12GB RAM
|512GB 12GB RAM
The Sony Xperia 1 V is an excellent smartphone, something we've come to expect from Sony. In addition to the new main camera and upgraded chipset, it also brings improved thermals and Night View for all cameras. There are also thoughtful updates on the design, speaker system, and battery life. And the Xperia 1 V impressed us right out of the box with one of the greatest smartphone designs we've experienced lately - solid, well-protected, lightweight, and with the best grip on the market.
The excellent 4K OLED HDR10 screen is a feast for the eyes. It is color accurate, too, and supports 240Hz touch response and 120 refresh rate, which no longer has to turn off due to overheating like on the Xperia 1 IV! We only wish it had a dynamic refresh rate management.
The cameras offer consistently great photo and video quality, with one of the best processing out there. And, of course, there are unmatched options for tuning if you know what you are doing. We don't consider the zoom system as a decision maker, as the difference between 3.5x and 5.2x magnification is not that groundbreaking. Hopefully Sony will offer longer zoom for its next flagship by working to expand its continuous zoom system.
It's not all great, though. There is no macro mode for the camera, the Night View is nothing that impressive, and the thermal throttling is still here even if it doesn't concern the screen and the camera. The video capturing could use some boost in the detail, too. But even as is, the Sony Xperia 1 V is one of the best smartphones on the market and a pretty unique cameraphone. It is also the only phone intended for creative photographers on the go, which gives it an edge over every other competitor.Read full review
|128GB 12GB RAM
|256GB 12GB RAM
The Pixel 8 Pro brings an updated camera system, an impressive display, a new and improved chipset, the promise of 7 years of software support, and an unexpected design. The bread and butter of Pixel phones has been their camera, and the 8 Pro has no shortage of improvements in that field. Key among those is the ultrawide on the back, which gets a new, larger sensor, while the main camera and the telephoto get revamped optics. It may not sound like a lot, but evolutionary steps can mean a lot when they add up.
With the Pixel 8 Pro Google has made strides to address a host of the complaints we had about the previous generation. No longer is the selfie camera a hit-and-miss affair, and the new ultrawide is also miles better than before. And the telephoto has been improved too. So, with both flanks of an already great main camera now covered, the normally excellent cameraphone is now somehow even better!
The brand-new display is now up there with the leading efforts in the industry - not that the old one was bad, it's just that this Super Actua panel is more deserving of high praise, than a simple 'yeah, that's good enough'. Similarly, the already stellar software support gets promoted to best-in-business - we'll see how quickly Google will forget about that 7-year promise, but right now, it sounds really nice.
Overall, the Pixel 8 Pro offers impressive photo and video quality across the board and if you prefer the vanilla Android experience and Google’s AI tricks, you should give this one a try.Read full review
|512GB 16GB RAM
The OnePlus Open is a great addition to the foldable segment, one that has everything to make the Galaxy Z Fold5 sweat. The Open has a classier and supposedly sturdier design; it's thinner and lighter. And it became evident it has better displays - both are of higher resolution, higher color bitrate, and support Dolby Vision. The cover one also offers a much more convenient aspect ratio.
What we did not expect from this foldable is to be is an outstanding cameraphone. The Hasselblad cameras are thoroughly impressive with natural rendition and overall impressive photo and video quality across the board, day and night. We are particularly fond of the selfies, portraits, and closeups shot with this setup.
The two dedicated selfie cameras are average at best, the cover selfie cam has some haziness, too. But we don't see these used for actual selfies, their main purpose should be video calls anyway.
The OxygenOS 13 is incredibly feature-rich and highly customizable, while the foldable-exclusive Open Canvas multi-tasking is super clever once you get the gist of it. OnePlus is promising 4 years of major Android updates and another one of security patches, too.
The OnePlus Open is an excellent alternative to the Fold5 if a stylus is not a must and if you don't plan on taking it underwater. And it has presented itself as the more versatile and higher-spec smartphone.
Yes, we enjoyed this OnePlus, both Open and Closed. It is one of the best combinations of a smartphone, tablet, and cameraphone, and we highly recommend it, especially once its launch price has settled a bit.Read full review
|512GB 12GB RAM
|256GB 12GB RAM
The Xiaomi 13T Pro is among the best phones you can get for €800. It delivers on every single promise and has plenty of flagship-grade, class-leading features. The new IP68-rated design, especially the one with the vegan leather back, is classy and stunning.
The Leica cooperation must be paying off, as all rear cameras deliver outstanding photo and video quality day and night with natural-looking and balanced output. We have no complaints from the video stabilization, too.
The 13T Pro impresses with one of the best OLED screens in the industry that is jam-packed with premium features, and it can also brag with the smallest punch hole. Furthermore, the Xiaomi 13T Pro employs one of the fastest chipsets on the smartphone market, which delivers excellent performance and stability across the board.
The only real setback we encountered on the Xiaomi 13T Pro was the selfie camera. It is a 20MP Quad-Bayer shooter that is just an insult to any cameraphone, let alone one developer with Leica. Its photo and video quality are quite average, too. Some might have hope for longer optical zoom, but we guess that will come with the Xiaomi 14 phones.
Long story short - the Xiaomi 13T Pro is one of the best phones right now, with top-notch hardware, exceptional execution across the board and a promising future. The launch price is also surprisingly good and we do recommend putting it at the top of your consideration lists.Read full review
|256GB 12GB RAM
|512GB 12GB RAM
The Honor Magic5 Pro is an incredibly powerful smartphone featuring a top-notch display, speakers, chipset, cameras, and charging options on the market, all wrapped into a beautiful and unique IP68-rated body. It also easily aced our display and battery tests, and it was pretty fast to charge. We also found its speakers to be loud enough and its performance to be flagship worthy.
The camera experience was as premium as it can be these days - the photo quality is excellent with natural-looking and balanced output across the board. The same can be said for the video experience, although we've seen a few zoomed videos of higher quality on other flagships.
It’s not all perfect – the 2x digital zoom isn't as lossless as on some other phones (we mean when compared to those with 1" main cameras). The zoomed videos aren't on par, too, and there is no 8K option. And, weirdly, all 4K videos are limited to 15 minutes, which is far from ideal for video creators, too.
But even with these setbacks, the Honor Magic5 Pro is a solid offer with flagship specs and quality top to bottom. And we do recommend this phone to everyone who is not a video creator - it literally has everything and it's not the most expensive offer on the market.Read full review
|256GB 8GB RAM
|512GB 12GB RAM
The Huawei P60 Pro is a wonderful smartphone with some of the best mobile cameras on the market. We were thrilled to find it excelling in everything camera-related, selfies included, and we do love the variable aperture and the telemacro capabilities - truly impressive features as far as smartphones are concerned.
The Huawei P60 Pro is a flagship device, too, with an excellent LTPO OLED, a fast Snapdragon chipset, and large battery with great battery life and fast charging. Oh, and we do appreciate Huawei making the charger more universal with its two ports. And it also impresses with its design.
Yet we all know that there's a big BUT to the whole thing. It's not that Google Mobile Services and 5G connectivity are impossible to live without. Huawei's AppGallery and alternative app repositories have gone a long way in the past few years, while 5G is yet to really become a game changer for most of our daily lives. One thing that has improved is the workarounds – you can now have most of the Google’s stuff and Google-reliant apps by using Gbox and/or GSpace.
We have to admit that the Huawei smartphones have always impressed us with their cameras, even their mid-range phones do better than many recent flagships. Huawei's ecosystem has grown even larger with their newly found focus on wearables, headphones, laptops and tablets, among which a Huawei phone would be in good company. So, if you have loved the Huawei cameras like we did, and you can live without 5G access, we are pretty sure you will find the new P60 Pro an excellent choice. When photography comes first, the P60 Pro has some pretty unique features not available on any other maker's phone.Read full review
|512GB 8GB RAM
Seeing how the Camon 20 Premier found its way to the camera recommendation section, it clearly does something right in that department. It has an interesting camera setup that is very reliable and versatile, offering very good all-around performance. The real highlight, however, is the high-resolution 108MP autofocusing ultrawide. It's a real treat in its own right that does its primary job pretty well and also produces some excellent macro shots if you are into that sort of thing. The 50MP main camera is no slouch either, and neither is the high-resolution 32MP selfie cam, complete with a pair of powerful front-facing LED lights for improved low-light photography.
While still on the topic of photography, we wish that the selfie cam had autofocus. Also, on a software level, the Camon 20 Premier has a fairly mundane set of camera options that, unfortunately, don't include RAW capture.
The rest of the Camon 20 Premier package is pretty solid overall. The phone feels sturdy and well-made. Battery life and overall performance are nothing short of dependable as well. It also offers a very competent multimedia experience thanks to a large display with great color accuracy and a pretty nice set of stereo speakers. However, we wish there was a bit more brightness to said display for outdoor use. Also, an official ingress protection rating would have gone a long way.Read full review
November 3, 2023: Replaced the iPhone 14 Pro Max with the iPhone 15 Pro Max, also new top. Replaced the Google Pixel 7 Pro with the Pixel 8 Pro. Added the Xiaomi 13T Pro and the OnePlus Open. Removed the Xiaomi 13 Ultra, Pixel 7, Xiaomi 12 Lite.
October 17, 2023: Added the Tecno Camon 20 Premier.
May 18, 2023: Added the Xiaomi 13 Ultra. Replaced the Sony Xperia 1 IV with the Sony Xperia 1 V. Replaced the Huawei Mate 50 Pro with the Huawei P60 Pro.
March 2023: Replaced the Galaxy S22 Ultra with the Galaxy S23 Ultra (new top). Replaced the Xiaomi 12S Ultra with Xiaomi 13 Pro. Replaced the vivo X80 Pro with the vivo X90 Pro. Replaced the Huawei P50 Pro with the Huawei Mate 50 Pro. Added Honor Magic5 Pro and vivo V27 Pro (as India Special). Removed the Xiaomi 12 Pro and Oppo Reno7.
November 10 2022: Added the Xiaomi 12 Lite as an affordable option.
November 1 2022: Replaced the iPhone 13 Pro Max with the iPhone 14 Pro Max. Replaced the Pixel 6 Po with the Pixel 7 Pro. Added Pixel 7 and Huawei P50 Pro. Removed the Oppo Find X5 Pro.
July 20, 2022: Added the Xiaomi 12S Ultra as a niche option.
June 29, 2022: Replaced the Galaxy S21 Ultra with the Galaxy S22 Ultra (new top). Replaced the Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra with the Xiaomi 12 Pro. Replaced the vivo X70 Pro with the vivo X80 Pro. Added Oppo Find X5 Pro, Oppo Find X5 Lite/Reno 7 5G, Sony Xperia 1 IV. Removed the OnePlus 8 Pro, Zenfone 7 Pro, Realme 8 Pro, Pixel 5a 5G.
November 5, 2021: Added Google Pixel 6 Pro and vivo X70 Pro+. Removed the Oppo Find X3 Pro.
October 20, 2021: Replaced the Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max with the Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max. Replaced the Pixel 4a 5G with the Pixel 5a 5G.
May 10, 2021: Replaced the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra with the Mi 11 Ultra as our Editor's choice. Replaced the Realme 7 Pro with the 8 Pro. Removed the Huawei P30 Pro (now 2 years old and hard to find), the Mi Note 10 (old and hard to find), and Mi 10 Ultra (local to China and now replaced by the 11 Ultra).
Feb 16, 2021: Replaced the Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra with the Galaxy S21 Ultra as our Editor's choice.
Jan 05, 2021: Replaced the Realme 6 Pro with Realme 7 Pro.
Nov 27, 2020: Replaced the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra with the Galaxy Note20 Ultra as our Editor's choice. Replaced Apple iPhone 11 Pro with 12 Pro Max. Replaced OnePlus 7T Pro with OnePlus 8 Pro. Replaced the Pixel 4 XL with Pixel 4a 5G as the former is no longer on sale. Added the Zenfone 7 Pro, Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra, and Huawei P40 Pro.
No Huawei Mate 60 Pro Plus which topped the DXOMark score? These days GSMA looks lazy by not reviewing phones that weren't handed to them. They should make an effort to buy phones such as the Mate 60 Pro themselves for review instead o...
In the specs GSMarena wrote video modes like Dolby vision 4k60 and hdr10+ and LOG video But they totally omitted it in the review, I really wanted to know more because not a lot of android smartphones have Dolby vision video recording support or...