For many, the photo is very important when it comes to choosing a new phone. Samsung Galaxy S or Note, Huawei P or Mate, Google Pixel … there is a wide range of competent smartphones with a very good camera to consider for the purchase. Here is our selection of the best photophones on the market in [year].
From a simple way to quickly immortalize moments to real alternatives to the purchase of a reflex, the photo has greatly improved in recent years on smartphones. Today, most smartphones have at least two photo sensors, but beware: a large number of sensors is not synonymous with high photo quality but better versatility (ultra wide-angle, telephoto, macro, depth of field for portrait modes).
In our selection, you will find only the best smartphones of the moment in photos, which will allow you to take excellent shots in most situations.
GOOGLE PIXEL 4 XL: IMPROVED AI
The Google Pixel 4 XL benefits from the same photo configuration as its little brother the Pixel 4. However, the autonomy of the latter is too fair for us to advise it, so we recommend you rather turn to the most popular model. tall.
By doing so, you will take advantage of Google’s excellent artificial intelligence expertise. The Mountain View company has further improved its AI recipe to offer absolutely incredible image quality to the Pixel 4 XL.
It is the first generation of Pixel smartphones to take advantage of a dual 12.2-megapixel sensor for the main and 16 megapixels for the x2 telephoto lens. This duo comes out of it in every situation, no matter how difficult it is. The Pixel 4 XL is, without doubt, the best photophone on the market and thus pays homage to its lineage.
WHY CHOOSE THE GOOGLE PIXEL 4 XL?
- The excellence of the camera
- Night mode is one of the most effective
- The addition of the telephoto lens
SAMSUNG GALAXY NOTE 10 PLUS: THE MOST STYLISH
The Galaxy Note 10 Plus improves the already very good S series recipe. If it inherits the versatile triple sensor arrangement, it also gains a fourth “ Time of Flight ” (or ToF) sensor. This improves portrait mode and allows jokes like 3D modeling of objects and faces (even if it is a bit wobbly at the moment). The presence of the S Pen Bluetooth pen also allows remote triggering of the device. It will also allow you to draw on your photos to amuse the gallery.
We then find the triples 12 megapixels at f / 1.5 or 2.4 (main) + 12 mp (2x zoom) + 16 mp ultra-wide-angle. If they are technically identical, Samsung has revised its software processing to offer a more natural rendering, especially on the wide-angle sensor. In short, the S10 set the bar very high, the Note 10 Plus goes up a notch. It is therefore undeniably the best photophone from Samsung. To learn more, don’t hesitate to consult our detailed test of the Samsung Galaxy Note 10+. Obviously, the Galaxy S10 remains a completely legitimate option, especially if you are on a tighter budget and have little use for the stylus.
WHY CHOOSE THE GALAXY NOTE 10 PLUS?
- Its complete and very good photo module
- Variable opening on the main sensor for improved night mode
- Natural colors and white balance respected
APPLE IPHONE 11 PRO: THE INEVITABLE
The Apple iPhone 11 Pro brings major changes to the camera level compared to its predecessor. It has indeed more photosensors which allow it to have better versatility in terms of shots. So you can have fun taking classic shots, x2 zoom images, and others in ultra wide-angle.
This last option is undoubtedly the best surprise of the iPhone 11 Pro since it allows it to finally be at the level of Android smartphones which offer this functionality for some time.
Overall, the renderings offered by the camera of the iPhone 11 Pro are really very balanced and manage to preserve a very natural appearance. The night mode is also particularly convincing and Apple has brought a touch of machine learning with Deep Fusion which generally reduces photo noise. If you have a really big budget and really want a bigger smartphone, you can opt for the iPhone 11 Pro Max which offers the same photo quality. To go further, you can read our full review of the iPhone 11 Pro .
WHY CHOOSE THE APPLE IPHONE 11 PRO?
- The versatility of the camera
- A new efficient automatic night mode
- Deep Fusion which reduces photo noise
The Huawei P30 Pro is still a reference in photos. With its triple sensor module 40 + 20 + 8 megapixels, accompanied by a ToF (Time of Flight) sensor to assess depth and distance, the flagship of early 2019 of the Chinese manufacturer manages to perfect the already very good solution of its predecessor. Whatever the context (day/night / indoor/outdoor), the pictures are always pretty with beautiful bright colors. It also offers a very efficient ultra-wide-angle mode, an impressive 10x zoom and the best portrait mode of the moment.
Regarding its 32-megapixel front sensor, the result is convincing with a very significant level of detail for a selfie camera.
Premium smartphone requires, it obviously has other advantages under its shell, including its 6.47-inch AMOLED screen, its high performance with the Kirin 980 chip and its extraordinary autonomy with its 4,200 mAh battery (fast-charge compatible, wireless and reverse wireless).
WHY CHOOSE THE HUAWEI P30 PRO?
- Simply stunning photo capabilities
- Great versatility with its 10x Zoom and ultra wide-angle
- A very effective portrait mode
GOOGLE PIXEL 3A / 3A XL: THE BEST PHOTOPHONES UNDER 500 EUROS
During the Google I / O 2019 conference , the Mountain View company unveiled the two affordable versions of its flagships of 2018. Baptized Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL , these new smartphones promise one thing (apart from their attractive price): a Photo experience worthy of the most premium smartphones. For this, they keep the same 12.2-megapixel sensor as their elders and even integrate Dual Pixel technology to offer better autofocus and efficient portrait mode. So yes, they do not take advantage of the power of the Snapdragon 845 or the Pixel Visual Core – a chip dedicated to image processing -, but it is clear that the pictures are impressive. In short, the Pixel quality is there.
Regarding the rest of the features, there is an OLED screen (5.6 inches for the 3a and 6 inches for the 3a XL), a Qualcomm Snapdragon 670 SoC, 4 GB of RAM, compatibility with fast charging, a jack 3.5 mm and a storage capacity of 64 GB. Finally, the main difference comes mainly from the autonomy. The classic model has a 2,915 mAh battery while the XL version has a 3,700 mAh battery.
WHY CHOOSE THE GOOGLE PIXEL 3A OR 3A XL?
- The best photo rendering for the price
- Impressive night mode
- Efficient portrait mode even without a second sensor
Over the years, several brands have stood out in the photo. The first is Huawei and for several years each new high-end model has brought a remarkable innovation in photos. Samsung, which designs its own sensors, is generally a reference in photos as well. Finally, we must not forget Apple and Google, which offer photos of excellent quality thanks, in particular, to particularly careful software processing.
In general, this is not the case. Since quality photo blocks are expensive, it is difficult to find good photophones at low prices. If this is an essential criterion for you, you will have to turn to high-end smartphones, even if it means saving longer. All things considered, however, entry-level terminals sometimes arrive at correct results.
The photosensors of smartphones are generally defined by two main elements: megapixels (mp) and aperture, expressed in f-stop and written in the form f / n. The first expresses the number of pixels that make up the matrix that receives the light. The more megapixels there are, the larger and sharper the image. However, the high number of megapixels is not always a guarantee of quality.
The aperture is a ratio between the focal length and the diameter of the diaphragm (or of the input lens if there is none). The lower the number, the larger the aperture, and the more the amount of light captured. It is generally a performance indicator in low light, but it is not self-sufficient, other parameters are taken into account .