There used to be a time when a mobile phone with a camera was considered a luxury. Only reserved for the topmost tier of phones earlier, nowadays you can find a camera on pretty much any phone. It’s become somewhat of a necessity as well, you never know when things can happen that you want to capture and keep forever. So there’s a lot of camera phones available right now, at pretty much every budget, and if you’re looking to buy the best camera phone for your budget you’re probably a bit confused. Fear not, we’ve got you covered! Here’s the best camera phones at pretty much every budget, so you know you’re getting the best bang for your buck!
The Best Camera phones at all price ranges
Between Rs. 5000 to Rs. 10000
To get some decent quality pictures, you have to spend at least a half a grand. Budget mobile phones may not produce the best image quality and a lot of them are not really worth it, so it’s sort of a difficult choice. At this price most international branded phones don’t feature anything over a 3.2 MP sensor, while Indian companies are more generous, so both our selections are from desi companies. Keep in mind that you might have to lower your standards a little bit with regards to image quality, but they’re great offerings for the price.
Lava Iris 502
The Lava Iris 502 is the first entry on our list and not only features a decent camera, but is also probably one of, if not the, cheapest phones that comes with Android Jelly Bean 4.1 out of the box. It features a 1 GHz single core processor, 512 MB of RAM, dual SIM functionality and includes a front facing 0.3 MP camera as well. There’s expandable storage support too, and the large 5 inch screen should satisfy most at this budget. It’s not blazing fast in terms of performance, but does the job pretty well.
Price: Rs. 7499
Technically from the same manufacturer from above, the XOLO series of smartphones tend to provide great value for money. Case in point, the XOLO A800, which comes with a pretty good 8 MP rear facing camera that performs well in all conditions. Other specs include a 1 GHz dual core processor, 512 MB RAM, dual SIM functionality, expandable storage support and a 4.5 inch qHD LCD screen. The only downside is that it comes with Android Ice Cream Sandwich 4.0 out of the box.
Price: Rs. 9999
Between Rs. 10000 to Rs. 15000
Karbonn S5 Titanium
Probably the most powerful phone this side of Rs. 15000, the Karbonn S5 Titanium not only has a pretty good 8 MP rear facing camera, but also a 2 MP front facing one. Apart from this, it has a 1.2 GHz quad core Qualcomm processor, 1 GB RAM, dual SIM functionality, a 5 inch qHD screen, expandable memory support and Android Jelly Bean 4.1 built in. So if you’re looking for a powerful device on a budget, this is it.
Price: Rs. 11999
The first Intel Atom powered smartphone packs in some pretty impressive specs for the price. Featuring the first 1.6 GHz single core Intel Atom processor with Hyper Threading, 1 GB RAM and a good 8 MP rear facing camera, this phone is worth the money. The 1.3 MP front facing camera is also good news for those who like video chatting, and the 4 inch screen is pretty dense and bright too. The highlight is the camera being able to record full HD 1080P video in addition to good photos. The downside is that there’s no expandable storage support.
Price: Rs. 13999
LG Optimus L7 II P715
A new launch from the Korean giant, the LG Optimus L7 II P715 comes with a good camera and decent specs to boot. The 1 GHz dual core processor, 768 MB RAM, expandable storage support and 4.3 inch qHD screen are about par for the course, but the 2460 mAh battery included promises great battery life as well. It also surprisingly has dual SIM functionality and a vibrant display.
Price: Rs. 14999
Between Rs. 15000 to Rs. 25000
Nokia 808 PureView
Whether it’s in this budget or even much higher, the Nokia 808 PureView is simply the best cameraphone out there. It rivals not only camera phones double its price but also gives a tough fight to some dedicated cameras. The only downside is that it comes with Symbian Belle and pretty lackluster specs, which is by no means a disability, it’s just that you might miss apps and higher functionality on smartphones running Android, Windows Phone or iOS. Consider it a camera with a phone instead of vice versa and you’ve got yourself one of the best imaging devices on the market, phone or not.
Price: Rs. 17999
Sony Xperia Ion
Sony has a track record of making good camera phones and the Sony Xperia Ion doesn’t disappoint. Featuring a great 12 MP shooter that captures great photos in both daylight and lowlight, it provides a great overall package and won’t disappoint as a phone either. While the 1.5 GHz dual core Qualcomm Snapdragon S3 might not impress tech junkies, you won’t really find any hiccups in real world usage and the gorgeous screen should more than make up for it as well.
Price: Rs. 21490
Between Rs. 25000 to Rs. 35000
HTC One X
HTC’s 2012 Android flagship still holds its own against the newer camera phones and produces great photos, albeit lowlight performance isn’t that great. Since it’s become considerably cheaper now and is still quite powerful, the HTC One X is a great deal. The fantastic screen and premium build makes it a good buy, and even the HTC 8X uses the same camera sensor as it does, so even if you’re a Windows Phone fan, you know that the photos won’t really disappoint.
Price: Rs. 26500 (16 GB variant)
LG Optimus G E975
Once the most powerful smartphone in the world, the LG Optimus G E975 still finds itself among the top of the performance charts. Packing in the same internals as the Google Nexus 4, with a 1.5 GHz quad core Qualcomm Krait processor, 1 GB RAM, Android Jelly Bean 4.1 built in and a 13 MP rear facing snapper, the Optimus G won’t leave you asking for more in any sense. Although video recording isn’t as great as it should be, the LG Optimus G E975 is a great buy as a cameraphone and performance based smartphone.
Price: Rs. 32990
Rs. 35000 and above
Nokia Lumia 920
The fantastic looking Nokia Lumia 920 might not have the best internals, but it more than makes up for it with the great camera, screen and user interface, running Windows Phone 8. Packing in some serious camera tech including optical image stabilization and amazing low light capability, the Lumia 920 is at the top of the cameraphone list. If you love taking photos and want a current smartphone OS, the Lumia 920 should be your choice.
Price: Rs. 35999
Apple iPhone 5
Apple’s iPhone series have consistently featured great cameras and the iPhone 5 is no exception. Photos and videos from the iPhone 5 are crisp, detailed and among the best in the smartphone arena. The camera is also simple to use and doesn’t require too much fiddling to produce optimum quality. Low light imaging is the weak point though and outdoor imaging in sunlight isn’t the best either due to a camera issue which has been addressed recently. A good buy, but very expensive.
Price: Rs. 45990
The most powerful smartphone on the list with a new camera technology called UltraPixel, the HTC One lacks large size images because of the smaller 4 MP sensor, but makes up for it in quality. Although it doesn’t trump other camera phones, the overall picture quality in all conditions is pretty good and makes a good case for the new UltraPixel technology. Perhaps with some time, UltraPixel cameras could be at the top of the pile. Nonetheless, even if you’re not getting the best camera, you’re getting a gorgeous phone.
Price: Rs. 45000 (expected)
So that was our comprehensive list of the best camera phones in 2013 according to budget. Yes, it’s only the beginning of the year and we could see more phones releasing, so this list will be updated. Do drop us a line telling us what you think, and feel free to ask us any doubts or add anything here!