The Cell Phone Camera's Of 2018 Are The Best Thing Since Sliced Bread

Last week I covered a few of my favorite tips for taking better cell phone pictures, so naturally, that leads to the next question. What phones have the best cameras?

They say the best camera is the one you have with you, with that said if you’re like me the camera you have with you the most is your phone camera. It’s amazing how fast the quality of cell phone camera's has advanced since my first phone just a few short years ago. I would trust most phone camera’s to print out an 8x10 and have it look pretty good. For the ultimate in Image quality, incredible optical zoom and the best low light performance you still need a DSLR, but if you’re looking for the best of the best in cell cams and money is no object here are my picks (without getting too techy) for the best cell phone camera’s on the market. 
 

  1.  iPhone X $1,000+  best IOS camera phone
This phone feels better to hold than the earlier plus models without giving up screen space. The camera outshoots the 8 when it comes to low light situations and takes incredible selfies.  The processing power is the same as the 8 and 8 plus but the one thing I don’t care for with the current class of iPhones is that the front and back are covered in glass, along with the price this makes insurance and a bank account like Trump a must with the X. 
Specs
    Primary    Dual: 12 MP (f/1.8, 28mm) + 12 MP (f/2.4, 52mm), OIS, phase detection autofocus, 2x optical zoom, quad-LED dual-tone flash, check quality
Features    Geo-tagging, simultaneous 4K video, and 8MP image recording touch focus, face/smile detection, HDR (photo/panorama)
Video    2160p@24/30/60fps, 1080p@30/60/120/240fps, 
Secondary    7 MP (f/2.2, 32mm), 1080p@30fps, 720p@240fps, face detection, HDR

2.  iPhone 8 Plus $800+
This phone has the best battery life of all current iPhones. It also has a Dual-lens design with an improved portrait mode, wireless charging, water resistant and a super-fast Bionic processor. I’m dating myself but I'm remembering back to the 6 Million Dollar man (Bionic Man) anything bionic has to be awesome, ha-ha. As far as iPhone and camera's go the X might be a slightly better all-around phone but for the price, I would go with the 8. 
Specs
    Primary    Dual: 12 MP (f/1.8, 28mm, OIS) + 12 MP (f/2.8, 57mm), phase detection autofocus, 2x optical zoom, quad-LED dual-tone flash, check quality
Features    Geo-tagging, simultaneous 4K video, and 8MP image recording touch focus, face/smile detection, HDR (photo/panorama)
Video    2160p@24/30/60fps, 1080p@30/60/120/240fps, Secondary    7 MP (f/2.2, 32mm), 1080p@30fps, 720p@240fps, face detection, HDR

3.   Huawei Mate 10 Pro $800+ Best for Selfies
In the age of selfies and duck lips (chicken butts), this phone is top in class for the self-portrait and battery life. Though it has a confusing interface and no wireless charging its handy software features and good performance might make this the camera phone for you. This phone also boasts an AI-assisted shooter to create incredible portraits. The AI uses object recognition and has 13 identifiable scenarios including cats and dogs, faces, plants and flowers and food. It will be fun to watch this brand over the next few years to see where they go. 
Specs
Primary    Dual: 12 MP (f/1.6, 27mm, OIS) +20 MP (f/1.6, 27mm), 2x lossless zoom, Leica optics, phase detection & laser autofocus, dual-LED dual-tone flash, check quality
Features    Geo-tagging, touch focus, face/smile detection, panorama, HDR
Video    2160p@30fps, 1080p@30/60fps, check quality
Secondary    8 MP, f/2.0

 

4.   LG V30 $749.99+ Best for Video and Landscapes
This is one of the best phones on the market for video and landscapes. The camera is great, the processor is fast, it has waterproofing yes you read that right waterproofing (what a great advancement), and micro SD storage. It may feel a little awkward to hold and the camera has a slow autofocus but all in all this phone is a great alternative to the (out of this world) Galaxy S8 or Google pixel 2 XL. 
Specs
Dual-camera with 70-degree main camera and 120 degrees super wide angle
Main camera: 16MP 1/3.1" Sony IMX351 CMOS sensor, F1.6 aperture, OIS
Super-wide-angle: 13MP Samsung sensor with 1.0um pixel size, F1.9 aperture
4K video
720p slow-motion at 120 fps
Manual photo and video control
5MP F2.2 front camera

5.   Samsung Galaxy S9 $719+ Best camera features
This phone is a good upgrade from older model phones unless you’re upgrading from the Galaxy 8. The 9 doesn’t have enough differences to make the upgrade worthwhile. The camera on this phone is awesome if your picture is well-lit but I would avoid shooting in low light situations as the images can look blurry and pixelated. This phone is super-fast, has wireless charging, is water resistant and has a bunch of cool camera features. Lovin these water-resistant features the can really be a plus for outdoor landscape shots. 
Specs
Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+
Price $720, $840
Display 5.8 inches (2960 x 1440), 6.2 inches (2960 x 1440)
CPU Snapdragon 845
RAM 4GB, 6GB Storage 64GB
microSD Yes, up to 400GB
Rear Camera
12-MP SuperSpeed Dual Pixel (f/1.5, f/2.4)
12-MP SuperSpeed Dual Pixel (f/1.5, f/2.4); 12-MP telephoto (f/2.4)
Optical zoom No,  2x
Front Camera
8-MP (f/1.7)

6.  Google Pixel 2 XL $600+ Best overall camera
Unlike some of the other phones on the market, this one doesn’t have wireless charging or a headphone jack and the battery life isn’t as good as the Galaxy if all that useless stuff is important to you cause all we care about here is the camera right. The camera in this phone is top of the line as far as Androids go along with the best in class processor. If you can overlook some of its downfalls the price, processor, and camera make this a great choice.
Specs
Rear Camera    12.2MP f/1.8
1.4μm pixels
Front camera    8MP, 1.4μm pixels
f/2.4, fixed focus    8MP, 1.4μm pixels
f/2.4, fixed focus
Video capture    4K @30fps, 1080p @120fps, 720p @240fps    4K @30fps, 1080p @120fps, 720p @240fps

7.    Honorable mention goes to the ASUS Zenfone 3 Zoom $318+ Best Budget Camera Phone
Waaaayyy long battery life, rear dual cameras with 2.3X optical zoom and the fact that ASUS addressed the white balance issue makes this a great camera phone for the budget savvy. Several of its downfalls is the fact that it won’t work on Sprint or Verizon, it’s performance is similar to cheaper cell phones and it has a slow interface, but hay it’s not $1,000. 
Specs
Primary    Dual: 12 MP (25mm, f/1.7, 1/2.5", 1.4 µm, 4-axis OIS, Dual Pixel PDAF) + 12 MP (59mm, f/2.8), phase detection & laser autofocus, 2.3x optical zoom factor, dual-LED dual-tone flash
Features    Geo-tagging, touch focus, face/smile detection, panorama, HDR
Video    2160p@24fps, 1080p@30fps
Secondary    13 MP (f/2.0, 1/3", 1.12 µm), 1080p

Ok, Ok so I really let the Sheldon or at least Leonard in me come out but I hope you all found some value in this, especially if you're a creative and into photography like me. Obviously, this isn't an all-inclusive review of these camera phones and if you are in the market for a new one please do some research and test a few out to see what fits your needs the best. As a disclaimer I own an iPhone 6+ which suits me just fine considering I'm cheap and won't put out the cash for a new phone until this one is totally obsolete.  

 

Your Friendly Neighborhood Photographer,

SCOTT

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