PhoneArena Awards 2014: Best cameraphones

PhoneArena Awards 2014: Best cameraphones
Did you know that the world's most popular camera is not exactly a camera? It is a smartphone, actually – the Apple iPhone. This should come as no surprise since smartphone cameras have been getting better and better, rivaling their point-and-shoot counterparts in terms of quality and features. Besides, our smartphones are conveniently within reach whenever we need to capture a special moment. Dedicated digital cameras aren't always as close. 

Now, the iPhone is definitely one of the best cameraphones out there, and its image quality is one of the key factors contributing to its popularity. But throughout 2014, we had the chance to review a broad range of competitor cameraphones, including some which were even better than Apple's pride and joy. This brings us to today's category in our PhoneArena Awards series. Ladies and gents, we give you the year's best cameraphones. 

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and Galaxy S5

Since the days when the Galaxy S II was in its prime, Samsung's high-end phones have ranked among the best cameraphones on the market. That's why our expectations for the Galaxy S5 and its 16MP camera were set high when we got the chance to review them. And they were definitely met. As a matter of fact, it has been some 8 months since then, and we still think that the Galaxy S5's camera is a force to be reckoned with. Its super-fast autofocus, rich arsenal of camera features, and sharp, detailed images make it a top contender in this race. But alone at the prime spot it is not. The Samsung Galaxy Note 4 is also sharing a piece of the gold thanks to its no less capable 16MP camera. The Note 4 takes everything there is to like about the Galaxy S5's camera, filters out the imperfections, and tops it all off with optical image stabilization. As a result, Samsung's phablet takes amazing photos in day or night, with tons of details and pretty colors. Long story short, the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 has what's quite possibly the best camera on a smartphone yet.

iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus

As we stated above, the iPhone is an awesome cameraphone, and it definitely deserves to be honored as one of the year's best in the category. What makes it truly great is the simple-to-use interface, the quick operation of its camera software, and, of course, the commendable photos that it takes even in tricky situations. In addition, the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus prove that the number of megapixels isn't all that matters in a camera. Amazing results can be achieved with only 8 megapixels when you have quality camera hardware and the well-tailored software to control it. 

Oppo N3

And here, at third place, is a phone you probably weren't expecting to see in this post – the Oppo N3. Yet it is a worthy cameraphone, in our opinion. First and foremost, its 16MP camera with Schneider Kreuznach optics shoots great images, as we found out while doing our review. Then there's the variety of unique features you get to play with, including Oppo's Ultra HD mode, RAW output, and the automatic panorama mode, which uses the motorized swiveling camera to do the panning for you. Speaking of which, the phone's camera can be easily rotated at up to 206 degrees. This allows it to act as either a rear- or a front-facing cam, depending on what you're trying to shoot – a beautiful scenery or a selfie with your buddies. Either way, your images are going to turn out splendid.

Story timeline



1. Neo_Huang

Posts: 1067; Member since: Dec 06, 2013

The Panasonic Lumix CM1 should be released soon, and that thing will surely blow away the competition.

35. cezarepc

Posts: 718; Member since: Nov 23, 2012

1 inch sensor... with the right processing and lens it has the potential to blow even bridge cameras and some low end DSLRs.

2. gagakiller

Posts: 176; Member since: Oct 08, 2014

AND THE WINNER IS : The smartest best selling phone in 2014 : iPhone 6+

4. Neo_Huang

Posts: 1067; Member since: Dec 06, 2013

Um, they put it in the middle, so no matter how you look at it it's second. Also, shouldn't you know best, of all people, that even the iPhone 6 sells more than the iPhone 6+?

6. vincelongman

Posts: 5691; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

The best selling car in 2014 is the Toyota Corolla Source: So this means? Toyota Corolla > Lamborghini Aventador Toyota Corolla > LaFerrari

12. fzacek

Posts: 2486; Member since: Jan 26, 2014

I like your logic...

15. jmonteiro829

Posts: 261; Member since: Feb 13, 2012

This is exactly the argument I have with someone that states that iPhone has the best sales!!!... how the hell does that mean it is better than something else!

17. cnour

Posts: 2305; Member since: Sep 11, 2014

But the Ferrari and Lamborghini in phones is iPhone since it is the most expensive phone. So most expensive and best selling!!!!!! This means that iPhone is the best.

19. g2a5b0e unregistered

There are many phones more expensive than an iPhone. Don't be ridiculous. Have you even heard of anything by Vertu? Clearly not.

28. cnour

Posts: 2305; Member since: Sep 11, 2014

We are not talking about phones that are expensive since we put gold or crystal on it. How stupid are you!!!!!

32. g2a5b0e unregistered

There are many models of Vertus & most do not have any crystal or gold on then. Check your facts before you call someone stupid. You end up sounding stupid yourself. The iPhone is not the most expensive phone out there. There are others besides Vertu. This is a fact. Deal with it. No need to toss around names because your statement was incorrect.

40. DBounce

Posts: 170; Member since: Apr 26, 2014

Price out a Note Edge. There are two models 32gb and 64gb. I think you'll find it's more expensive than all the iPhones.

24. vincelongman

Posts: 5691; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Your missing my point Highest sales != Best E.g. iPhone for phones, Beats by Dre for headphones or Justin Bieber for music

20. sid07desai

Posts: 290; Member since: May 03, 2012

yes but toyota Corolla doesn't cost twice as much as Lamborghini or Ferrari

25. gagakiller

Posts: 176; Member since: Oct 08, 2014

What a stupid thinking Is Corolla more expensive than Lamborghini ?????? It sells more because it is affordable. iPhone is the most expensive phone in the market and it sells more than any affordable phone. Think before you type

26. vincelongman

Posts: 5691; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Your missing my point Highest sales != Best For example iPhone for phones Beats by Dre for headphones Justin Bieber for music

33. g2a5b0e unregistered

There are many models of phones that are more expensive than an iPhone. Check your facts before spewing nonsense.

45. NFSHesham

Posts: 297; Member since: Feb 04, 2014

And more people are screwed buying it than any other phone

31. SupermanayrB

Posts: 1188; Member since: Mar 20, 2012

Same analogy I use: DJ Mbenga, 2 championship rings & Charles Barkley has none so DJ > Charles.

43. NFSHesham

Posts: 297; Member since: Feb 04, 2014

IPhone is no lamborghini or Ferrari It is more like a lexus LF-A Great but too expensive and full of problems While A note 4 is like a Porsche Panamera A Z3 is like a McLaren MP4-12C LG G3 is a Audi R8 V10

16. laughmi

Posts: 283; Member since: Oct 28, 2014

Hurray Note Series again f**D up the iCrap series!!! :D

27. WWThinker

Posts: 55; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

"Best selling phone in 2014" - probably true. "Smartest" - definitely wrong because the definition of "smartest" is hard to define and is in fact very difficult to have a consensus. If you told us that you were the smartest end-user of iPhone, probably many people would not agree!

3. darkkjedii

Posts: 31034; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

This ought to be interesting.

5. Fallen1

Posts: 288; Member since: Nov 14, 2014

Just waiting for PA to do blind camera comparison against IP6+ vs Note 4. Let the people and proof decide

7. TyrionLannister unregistered

I think the note 4 did win the blind test by quite a margin didn't it. The iPhone 6 was there too.

10. Donone41

Posts: 246; Member since: Dec 17, 2014

You'll be waiting for a while bro. the note4 already gave the 6plus a thorough thrashing.

8. TreyTreyTaylor

Posts: 728; Member since: Dec 21, 2010

I love my Note 4.

9. SonyFindOneDroidple

Posts: 865; Member since: May 11, 2013

same here :D

11. darkkjedii

Posts: 31034; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

That 6 plus is beast.

22. Tritinum

Posts: 471; Member since: May 06, 2014

Not gonna argue about that, it is a great phone but have you used any other current high end phone other than the i6+ to compare its "beastness".

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit for samples and additional information.