Top 5 best smartphones for slow-motion video recording

Top 5 best smartphones for slow-motion video recording
Today, we're going to take a look at the cream of the smartphone crop as we try to figure out which smartphones offer the best slow-motion video capture. 

In the past couple of years or so, a new trend has emerged in the premium sector of the smartphone market. No, this time around, we're not talking about the fingerprint scanner craze. Instead, we're talking about slow motion videos. 

In theory, the process is simple: capture video at the highest possible resolution and frame rate, and when the playing speed is lowered at the usual speed of 30 frames per second (fps), the objects in the video appear to be moving slower for a Matrix-like effect. 

When thinking about which smartphones offer the best slow motion video capture, there are multiple details to bear in mind. Naturally, the imaging sensor and the video compression algorithms are of prime importance, since we're looking for quality videos in terms of brightness, focus, and color reproduction. Furthermore, some smartphones also offer manual video controls, which are really useful in the hands of a skilled cameraman. 

Strictly from a slow-motion perspective, what interests us is the resolution of the slow-motion video (more pixels = more details) and the frame rate at which videos are captured.

With all of this in mind, we took a look at the US smartphone market, and we've come to the conclusion that these are the top five smartphones for slow-motion video recording. Do note that the handsets are listed in no particular order.

Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge




The new Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge are some of the best smartphones we've ever laid our hands on, and the two handsets do not disappoint in the video department. 

The raw hardware reads like this: a 12MP primary sensor with an aperture of f/1.7, OIS, and dual-pixel autofocus. The sensor has a physical size of 1/2.6" and a pixel size of 1.4 µm.

The Galaxy S7 series can shoot slow-motion videos at a resolution of 720p and 240fps, as well as 1080p videos at 60fps. OIS is enabled in videos, and the blazing-fast dual pixel autofocus is perfect for making sure that moving subjects will always remain in focus.

Apple iPhone 6s Plus



The iPhone 6S Plus is not only one of the best phablets money can currently buy, but it's also one of the best smartphones around when it comes to slow-motion video capture. Like its smaller sibling, the iPhone 6S, Apple's phablet can capture slow motion videos in either 1080p at 120fps, or in 720p at 240fps.

In terms of hardware, the iPhone 6S Plus features a 12MP sensor with a physical size of 1/3", OIS, and a pixel size of 1.22 µm.

Despite coming with the same software features as the smaller iPhone 6S, the 6S Plus also has the notable advantage of hardware-based optical image stabilization. Furthermore, while on the previous-gen iPhone 6 Plus, OIS was limited to stills, the new model brings stabilization to videos as well. 

Another interesting thing about the iPhone 6S Plus is that the smartphone's front-facing 5MP camera has the ability to capture slow-motion videos as well. Again, users can choose between 1080p videos at 120fps or 720p videos at 240fps. We can't actually figure why anyone would want to capture slow-motion videos using the secondary camera, but at least the option is available should a suitable context present itself.


LG V10



When it comes to video capture, the LG V10 is a top contender in the smartphone market, and yes, the smartphone's video recording chops also extend to slow-motion videos.

On the hardware side, the LG V10's primary camera is a 16MP sensor with a physical size of 1/2.6", an aperture of f/1.8, laser autofocus, and optical image stabilization. 

While the LG V10's slow-motion video capture abilities are limited to its 720p @ 120fps mode, the reason why the LG V10 remains a top choice in the context of this article is its manual video mode. If you know what you're doing, you can use this manual mode to capture some astonishing videos. 

Sure, the slow-motion effect that the LG V10 produces is a bit more toned down compared to what other handsets mentioned here have to offer, but if you need total control over the camera settings, then the LG V10 is the smart choice.


Google Nexus 6P



The Huawei-made Google Nexus 6P was the first Android smartphone to come with 720p 240fps slow-motion video recording. As such, it definitely deserves a spot on this list, especially since the handset also has the unique advantage of stock Android implementations and timely software updates. 

The primary camera on the Google Nexus 6P is a 12.3MP sensor with an aperture of f/2.0, a physical size of 1/2.3", and 1.55µm pixels. Unfortunately, the Nexus 6P lacks hardware-based optical image stabilization, which is a rather important component when capturing videos.


Motorola Moto X Pure



If the premium smartphones that we've previously mentioned here are out of your budget, then you might want to turn your attention to the Motorola Moto X Pure Edition.

The primary camera on Motorola's current-gen flagship is a 21MP sensor with a physical size of 1/2.4" and 1.1µm pixels (the largest sensor on this list but the smallest pixel size due to the increased resolution). Other raw specs include an aperture of f/2.0 and phase-detection autofocus.

Overall, the Moto X Pure Edition is capable of capturing above-average videos. However, slow-motion video capture is limited to 720p @ 120fps, and the handset also lacks the V10's manual video mode.

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40 Comments

1. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3944; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

That order is weird, shouldn't it be, 6s plus,S7,6P,V10, and X Pure.

3. cripton805

Posts: 1485; Member since: Mar 18, 2012

It might be the difference in quality.

14. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3944; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

The S7 has that badass autofocus so I can see why some would put it above the 6s plus but IDK why the 6P is below the V10 because the 6P has the best android camera of 2015.

24. Adreno

Posts: 755; Member since: Mar 12, 2016

WTH are you saying? LG V10's camera is way better that the one in the Nexus 6P! The only place where the 6P beats the V10 is in low-light shots. Period.

35. vincelongman

Posts: 5628; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Well this is a list of top slow mo recording phones The 6P has far better quality slow mo recording than the V10 240 fps vs 120 fps Also lightning is probably better on the 6P too

37. Adreno

Posts: 755; Member since: Mar 12, 2016

It is'nt just about the amount fps, but also about the quality of video footage as well. And which explains why the iPhone 6S didn't figure at the top spot of this comparision, though it shoots 1080p@240fps, unlike the top spot holder Galaxy S7!

38. vincelongman

Posts: 5628; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

The 6S is also 720p@240fps (but its 1080p@120fps) The video quality of the 6P's 240 fps slow mo is on par with the V10 and 6S too BTW

4. Unordinary unregistered

Loving my 120fps @ 1080p videos

13. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3944; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

Me to!

15. AlikMalix unregistered

To be honest, even though I have had 240fps for a long while on my 5s (welcome to the current times, android fans (sorry I had to say it)), 120fps at 1080p is a proper speed for most videos. But I use 240fps often too - it's nice to have that - android folks are gonna enjoy it.

16. Unordinary unregistered

Of course!!!! 240fps is awesome. Loved it on my 5S!!! But 120fps for 1080p rocks just as well!!! Check this amazing iPhone slo mo out if you haven't already seen this. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=aqncOP7OzMg And haters say the camera sucks.. LMFAO.

32. BradyCrack

Posts: 835; Member since: Dec 29, 2015

I wonder if the iPhone 7 will be able to run 240fps for 1080p and 360fps for 720p? Maybe even 120p for 2k?

23. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3944; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

1080p @120fps is the bomb.

26. Adreno

Posts: 755; Member since: Mar 12, 2016

"1080p@120fps is the bomb" Really? Then 4K@60fps is an even bigger bomb! And unlike Android phones, no iPhone to date is capable of that! Lel...

28. AlikMalix unregistered

Just curious which phones have 4K at 60fps?. Thanks.

30. sip1995

Posts: 1771; Member since: Feb 07, 2014

I think the ones with the SD 820. But i don't think OEMS have it as an option in the camera app.

31. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3944; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

Let me clarify what I meant, since you totally missed what this article was about. 1080p@120FPS IS THE BOMB FOR SLOW-MOTION VIDEO RECORDING. No smartphone can record 4K in slow-motion and even if they did I wouldn't use it because regular 4K video recording takes up to much space and slow motion-recording in 4K would take up way to much space. Also what phone records 4K@60fps??????

39. iushnt

Posts: 3062; Member since: Feb 06, 2013

android folks also enjoy file managers..

40. Kachef7

Posts: 1; Member since: Jun 30, 2016

Do you remember LG Viewty phone from 2007? that one had 120fps that long time ago.. :) welcome to the current times IOS users I should say..

36. vincelongman

Posts: 5628; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

I wish more phones had this Also I want phones with Adaptive Sync and 120Hz screens So I can watch these at full speed and in slow mo

2. cripton805

Posts: 1485; Member since: Mar 18, 2012

Justice for the LG V10 and PAs score of 7.0 ... What a joke. It's definitely an underrated phone.

5. sissy246

Posts: 7006; Member since: Mar 04, 2015

No, they got it right

6. MrHate

Posts: 314; Member since: Feb 09, 2015

The iPhone 6s has hands down the best slow motion recording out of these phones. There is no question about this. I'm seeing all these Sammy boys bragging how cool their new slow motion is while the iPhone 6 had it already ages ago. Samsung is always trying to catch up. But you can't be the best if you always try to catch up. You have to innovate new and consumer friendly features and technology in order to be the best. Just like Apple is doing it and done it in the past.

7. drunkenjay

Posts: 1647; Member since: Feb 11, 2013

Go stand in the corner fanboy. Its a phone not your parents. brag about your parents and what they did for you instead of a bloody phone.

8. SenorThrottles

Posts: 284; Member since: Dec 23, 2015

The Galaxy S5 could shoot slo mo video and that phone came out before the iPhone 6...

10. UglyFrank

Posts: 2191; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

It's true and that is my phone but the resolution was lower.

21. AlikMalix unregistered

And quality of the videos on s5 sucked butt - well overexaggerating, but they were not so good. My iPhone 5s had slow-no that was perfect!

27. SenorThrottles

Posts: 284; Member since: Dec 23, 2015

Yeah i agree, the S5 slo mo was pretty terrible. Apple was the first company to actually take slo mo video seriously

29. Adreno

Posts: 755; Member since: Mar 12, 2016

Huh? The Galaxy Note 3 was the video-recording champion in GSMArena's camera battle comparison! Way above the iPhone 5S. And the Galaxy S5 is superior to the Note 3 in camera. But remember that the ISP in the A7 chipset had to handle only a 8MP sensor, so it's less work compared to a 13 and 16MP one.

17. Huzaifah97

Posts: 13; Member since: Nov 13, 2015

Bro... the Apple iPhone 5s can also shoot slow motion video but I dont like Apple.

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