In today’s smartphone market, the camera component is a crucial factor that influences many people’s purchasing decisions. It’s natural to want a phone that takes great photos, but with so many models available, it can be overwhelming to choose the best one for your needs. That’s why we’ve put together a list of the best smartphones for photography in 2023, covering different price ranges and various preferences.
Determining the best photo smartphone is not an easy task. There are numerous products that excel in this area, and each person may have specific preferences when it comes to photographic rendering. However, smartphones have come a long way in terms of their camera capabilities, and some models can almost rival mirrorless cameras, at least for everyday use.
As photographers often say, “the best camera is the one you always have on you”. For many of us, that camera is our smartphone. With their versatile lenses, advanced algorithms for portrait and night mode, sharp daytime image quality, and excellent zoom capabilities, smartphones have become a go-to option for capturing memories. Experts test over a hundred smartphones a year, focusing on each detail to determine which models perform the best in terms of photography.
The best camera smartphone in 2023
Our selection of the best smartphone cameras includes the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra, which tops the list as the best overall device for photography. The Google Pixel 7 is the best option for portraits, while the iPhone 14 Pro is the best for video. The Oppo Find X5 Pro is an excellent alternative, and the Honor Magic 4 Pro is the most versatile model on our list.
Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra
The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra is an outstanding device with an impressive set of features. After the tests, it’s clear that this is the best camera smartphone currently available on the market. The improvements made in the camera component, particularly the 200 megapixel main sensor, are noteworthy, and the device is a worthy successor to the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra.
With four main lenses, including the 200 megapixel sensor that uses pixel binning to merge photosites for increased precision, the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra delivers shots that are rich in detail, sharpness and vibrant colors. Although some tests detected some issues with the autofocus, the software processing of the S23 Ultra is able to correct these defects, and the x10 telephoto lens is particularly impressive, with the digital zoom reaching up to 100X.
The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra stands out for its versatility, with the high end smartphone able to meet your expectations regardless of the sensor used or lighting conditions. The device performs excellently in any situation. Complemented by a huge battery life, a stunning 6.8 inch AMOLED screen, quality finishes, and a flawless processor.
However, the price tag of the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra is undeniably high, at a whopping $1,199. If you are able to afford it, this flagship from Samsung is undoubtedly one of the best smartphones available in 2023.
Google Pixel 7
Google has launched its new Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro models as successors to the Pixel 6. The camera section of both smartphones is again great, producing detailed, colorful and bright shots. The Google Pixel 7 is a great high end smartphone for photography.
The Pixel 7 features a 6.3 inch OLED screen with a 2400 × 1080 pixel resolution. The screen calibration is almost perfect, and the maximum brightness is one of the best in the market at 922 cd / m².
Regarding photography, the Pixel line has been known for several generations for its great photo quality. The Pixel 7 is no exception, thanks to Google’s fantastic algorithms. The smartphone comes with only two lenses: a 50MP wide angle and a 12MP ultra wide angle. There is no telephoto lens, but Google has compensated for this by using their Super Res Zoom technology, which can produce up to x8 zoom using AI.
The Pixel 7 excels in all photography modes, including portraits, night mode, and ultra wide angle shots. On video, the Pixel 7 is equally impressive. With the capability to record up to 4K at 60 FPS on both the front and back cameras. The cinematic mode is also a success.
With the Pixel 7 (and the Pixel 7 Pro, which can zoom up to 30X), Google continues to be one of the best smartphone brands for photography, and has managed to compete with high-end smartphones while still being affordable.
Apple iPhone 14 Pro
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Apple is renowned for the quality of its iPhone camera shots, irrespective of the model. However, the Pro range is especially lauded for its camera abilities. The latest iPhone 14 Pro boasts a larger sensor for its primary camera. With a whopping 48 megapixels as compared to the 12 in the previous model. Furthermore, the x2 telephoto lens is highly effective, providing users with more flexibility.
The AI processing has been enhanced in the iPhone 14 Pro. Thanks to the A16 Bionic chip that uses Pixel Binning technology. This software fusion of pixels improves the brightness of the pictures. Another software optimization feature, Photonic Engine, has also been incorporated to enhance color accuracy.
The iPhone 14 Pro is a standout performer when it comes to videos, thanks to the introduction of the Action mode, which is similar to the stabilization present in a GoPro camera. This feature provides more stable footage even when the user is moving around a lot. Such as while running or cycling. Additionally, users can now zoom while filming, and the cinematic mode has been upgraded to a 4K definition. The front camera now boasts an autofocus and a better aperture.
In low light conditions, the iPhone 14 Pro truly shines, with an extended dynamic range and reduced noise. The performance is excellent, and the OLED screen is impeccable, with almost perfect colorimetric fidelity.
If you already own an iPhone 13 Pro, you may not be able to discern the difference between the two models with the naked eye, especially in terms of photo quality. In such a case, investing in the latest model may not be worthwhile. However, if you are looking for the best iPhone for photography, the iPhone 14 Pro is the obvious choice.
Oppo Find X5 Pro
The Oppo Find X5 Pro is a high quality smartphone that is on par with its predecessors in terms of technical specifications. The phone’s technical specs offer a top of the line experience, just like the previous generation. However, what sets this phone apart is its ability to take amazing photos.
As with the previous Find range models, photography is one of the standout features of the Oppo Find X5 Pro. This new version has a partnership with Hasselblad, a specialized brand that is known for its exceptional cameras. The phone’s 50-megapixel main lens is supported by an ultra wide angle and a telephoto lens. Making it a versatile tool for taking great shots in any conditions.
The photos taken with the Oppo Find X5 Pro are of very high quality, with excellent color reproduction and detail. The video capabilities of the phone are also impressive, with the ability to shoot in 4K.
The phone’s internal power is also a major factor in the quality of the shots it produces. The Oppo Find X5 Pro is equipped with the latest Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor with 12 GB of RAM. This makes software processing lightning fast, so you can take photos and videos quickly and efficiently. The phone also has a stunning 6.7-inch AMOLED screen that provides exceptional performance.
In summary, the Oppo Find X5 Pro is a premium device that is considered one of the best on the market for photography. With its top of the line technical specifications and its partnership with Hasselblad, this phone is a great choice for anyone who values high-quality photos and videos.
Honor Magic 4 Pro
Honor has made a comeback with the release of the Magic 4 Pro, a high end smartphone. This device has impressive features that make it a remarkable product, including its design. The camera on this phone is integrated into a circle, which is called “the Eye of the muse”. This placement is discreet but elegant.
The camera on the Magic 4 Pro has three lenses, including a 50-megapixel wide angle lens, a 50-megapixel ultra-wide angle lens, and a 64-megapixel periscope lens with 3.5x optical and 100X digital zoom. The main sensor on the phone performs well in good conditions, offering faithful colors and good light management. It also has a high level 10X zoom that provides detailed images. However, the 100X zoom is more than just anecdotal.
The camera on the Honor Magic 4 Pro is versatile, making it a great choice for photography enthusiasts. It has an effective night mode and a quality portrait mode. Even the video part of the camera does not have to blush in the face of competition.
Overall, the Honor Magic 4 Pro is an excellent phone with impressive camera features. Its design is also noteworthy, making it a top choice for those who appreciate style and functionality in a smartphone.
In conclusion, if you’re looking for a smartphone that can capture stunning photos, our list of the best photo smartphones in 2023 is an excellent place to start. With so many options available, you’re sure to find a device that suits your needs and preferences.