From the Samsung S21 Ultra to the iPhone 12 Pro Max, here are 5 of the best camera smartphones you can buy in 2022
We’ve slowly started moving away from bulky cameras in favor of smartphones over the past few years and it’s not hard to see why: some cell phones have cameras that can take pictures that are just as good, if not better. , than real digital cameras.
The photographic department of smartphones, at present, has become the main arena where smartphone brands fight with each new model. It’s no longer just about the megapixels, but also about the software that processes them and the involvement of artificial intelligence in the process.
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So we’ve put together a short list of some of the best camera-oriented smartphones currently available on the market, just in case you’re on the hunt for a new device.
But before we continue with the list, we need to clarify what exactly you should look for when deciding which smartphone camera best suits your needs.
We have to start with megapixelsof course – the number of megapixels is the first and sometimes the only thing that the manufacturer mentions in relation to the device, to capture the attention of users.
Simply put, the higher the megapixel count, the more detail you will see in the image. For a long time, smartphone camera specs have focused on megapixel count, but it’s not just pixel count to capture a quality photo.
It’s also worth noting that many cameras don’t capture the maximum megapixel settings by default because too many pixels make an image too large (in terms of storage memory) without making any real use of the end result.
So keep in mind that you can’t really judge a camera by pixel count alone.
then, we have sensor size.
HTC is the one who coined the term ‘ultrapixel’ a few years ago, to basically mean that it used larger megapixels than other competing camera phones. This means that even a 4MP camera could perform better than an 8MP camera.
These pixels are measured in micrometers and the larger they are, the more light they are able to capture. The primary lens of the iPhone 12, for example, has a pixel size of 1.4µm, while the Samsung Galaxy A22 has a pixel of 1.12µm.
There is also the question of Optical Image Stabilization (OIS), which helps maintain camera stability. Our hands even shake slightly when we are holding an object and when it comes to cameras it is quite obvious as the photos are blurry. The OIS takes care of that barely perceptible shake and it will be evident in the sharpness of the photos.
OIS is a feature we now take for granted in most mid to high-end smartphones.
Last, but not least, we have the high dynamic range (HDR), which takes multiple photos of whatever you’re pointing at at different exposures. It works by combining them in post-processing, to create a single shot that will be brighter and more detailed.
This feature is present on just about every smartphone released in recent years, from low-end to high-end devices.
Choosing the best smartphone for the camera is a difficult task when there are so many options in the market. Different photography-focused mobiles take very different approaches to capturing great images, so there are plenty of good options out there.
Of course, only you can decide which suits your needs best, so let’s take a look at the devices we’ve chosen for this list.
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra
It’s fair to start this list with one of the best. While its predecessor, the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra promised a lot in the camera department but somehow failed to deliver, the S21 Ultra delivered on all of those promises and more.
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The device has a high-end camera with a 108MP f/1.8 main snapper, a 12MP f/2.2 ultra-wide angle and, in an unusual move, also two 10MP telephoto lenses. One of them has an f/2.4 aperture with 3x optical zoom, while the other has an f/4.9 aperture with 10x optical zoom.
You’d be hard-pressed to say the results aren’t impressive. In addition to this, the device also has a huge 40MP front camera.
iPhone 12 Pro Max
At first, this device seems a little underpowered to make it onto this list: it packs a 12MP wide-angle lens, a 12MP ultrawide, a 12MP telephoto, and a 12MP selfie snapper.
However, what the iPhone seems to lack in megapixels, it makes up for in software.
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The 12 Pro Max is different from the Pro version in the camera department as it has an enlarged sensor. The main 12MP sensor is 47% larger than the sensor of other devices in the series and this detail really makes the difference.
It lets in more light, for one, and also allows for more effective background blurring. The lens is physically stabilized which allows it to be more effective, with less noise and blur. On top of that, it takes bright and detailed photos even in night mode.
The camera software also comes with features like Dolby Vision for videos and Smart HDR 3 for better image processing.
Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro
While this device has seen a price drop since its release, that doesn’t mean it’s less capable than the others on this list.
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After all, we are talking about a device with a Samsung Bright HMX sensor. The sensor supports native 4-in-1 pixel clustering technology with an effective pixel size of 1.6µm, which delivers excellent results in all lighting conditions.
The phone can even run 8K at 30fps as the 108MP main camera and Snapdragon 865 chipset are fully capable of handling the task.
Huawei P40 Pro
While this device suffers in other departments, like its lack of access to Google Play, when it comes to cameras, this smartphone is a winner.
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It has a 50MP f/1.9 main camera, a 12MP f/3.4 periscope camera (with 5x optical zoom), and a 20MP f/1.8 ultra-wide-angle camera. Up front, the Huawei Mate 40 Pro has a decent front setup too, with a 13MP f/2.4 camera paired with a Time-of-Flight (ToF) sensor for depth sensing.
The phone also comes with plenty of photography modes, like a light painting feature and a mode entirely dedicated to lunar photography.
Realme 8 Pro
Last but not least, Realme’s 8 Pro delivers on all sides, not just in the photography department and, for being quite an affordable device, it packs a lot of features. But again, a lot of features crammed into affordable devices is something of a tradition for Realme devices and we’re certainly not complaining.
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It even has a MicroSD card slot, which is a very useful feature for those interested in smartphone photography.
It has four cameras on the back: 108MP wide angle, 8MP ultra wide angle, 2MP macro and 2MP black and white. The Realme 8 Pro can record videos in 4K at 30 fps and offers good stabilization. It also performs quite well in low-light environments.
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