It’s that time again. You need a new phone. Maybe your screen cracked. Maybe it fell out of your pocket at a concert. Maybe you’re just ready for an upgrade.
But your situation is slightly different than the average person’s. You’re trying to grow your YouTube channel and your phone has become a vital device in helping you create quality content.
The trouble is, how do you choose? Should you stick with the same brand you’ve been using for the last ten years or is it time to switch things up?
To help you make the right decision, I’ve taken an in-depth look at the newest phones on the market and picked out the 7 best smartphones for YouTube vlogging. To get things going, I’ll start with the most popular choices:
**Disclaimer: We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.
The Best Smartphones For Vlogging on YouTube
Table of Contents
Why Use a Smartphone for Vlogging
Vlogging is a creative and social expedition that can easily run your bank account dry.
From expensive cameras to almost necessary accessories like tripods, external mics, and even light setups to make your vlog look professional, the costs can skyrocket easier and much quicker than expected.
However, vlogging doesn’t have to drain your bank account if you don’t want it to.
In fact, it’s recommended to not invest so much on a camera when you’re starting.
Almost all of us have smartphones. Smartphones nowadays are smarter and more advanced than ever, many of them containing the same technology and specs as some sophisticated DSLR cameras.
Most flagships from 2022 already have 4k recording. Well, guess what? Many real cameras can’t even do that. For something that you already carry around with you all day, you actually might have more options available to you using your smartphone, the same piece of technology you use to text, call, and “social media.”
One of the benefits of using your smartphone to vlog is that it’s always with you. DSLRs can take up quite a bit of carrying space, and even thin mirrorless cameras will need a separate pocket to carry.
Using your phone to vlog can save valuable space and money as you’ll already have it by your side.
With that said, let’s look at the in-depth reviews of some of the best phones for video blogs you can get this year.
1. iPhone 13
- Excellent video quality
- Cinematic video mode
- Great battery life
- Double-camera system (wide and ultra-wide)
- True depth 12 MP front camera w/ nocturnal mode
- The cinematic mode only goes up to 1080p
The newest iPhone model from the giant Apple Inc. has captured people’s attention by improving on well-known defective aspects of prior iPhone models (such as battery life) and offering an amazing variety of video shooting modes and outstanding overall image quality.
First of all, the phone’s processing is propelled by the amazing 5G-ready A15 Bionic chip that ensures that everything from switching between the several shooting modes available or trading the front camera for the rear cameras happens at a fast and smooth pace.
The images the iPhone 13 can produce in proper light conditions are truly amazing and don’t fall short even when compared to many professional cameras out there. The cinematic mode brings an amazing depth of field and stabilization to your footage and can also automatically control focus based on the subject’s movement within the frame.
The video recording quality can go up to a Dolby Vision HDR 4K standard, however, the cinematic mode unfortunately only works in a resolution of up to 1080p.
Night shooting quality is also an improvement in relation to prior models, as the iPhone 13 is far more efficient at capturing light in not-so-adequate conditions, providing better image texture and identifying faces and objects with much more ease. Less noisy image quality during nighttime shooting can be achieved with both the front and rear cameras.
The iPhone 13, as you’d probably expect, comes at a very spicy price that may not fit some vloggers’ budgets. However, if you can make an effort in order to afford a top product like this, you should definitely consider doing it, as the results prove themselves worthy.
- Frontal camera: 12 MP, f/1.6, 26mm (wide), 1.7µm, dual pixel PDAF, sensor-shift OIS; 12 MP, f/2.4, 120˚, 13mm (ultrawide)
- Selfie camera: 12 MP, f/2.2, 23mm (wide), 1/3.6″
- Video Quality: [email protected]/25/30/60fps, [email protected]/60/120fps, gyro-EIS
- Chip: Apple A15 Bionic (5 nm)
- Display: 6.1 inches, 90.2 cm2 (~86.0% screen-to-body ratio)
- Weight: 174 g (6.14 oz)
- Dimensions: 146.7 x 71.5 x 7.7 mm (5.78 x 2.81 x 0.30 in)
- Battery: Li-Ion 3240 mAh, non-removable (12.41 Wh)
- Great video quality
- Shoots video in a resolution up to 8K
- Autofocus and video stabilization feature
- Adaptive color contrast
- Poor battery life
The newest model from Samsung’s Galaxy series, the S22 may not have such a specific cinematic mode as the iPhone, but it has the capacity of shooting video in a resolution of up to 8K and other very interesting and useful features for vloggers.
First off, the video stabilization feature comes in handy, especially for vloggers, who mostly shoot video with the phone in their hands or attached to selfie sticks. No excessive shaking should get in the way of the watchability factor of your videos, which is also improved by an autofocus feature capable of detecting and tracking up to 10 people within the frame.
A lot of improvement – compared to its predecessor, the S21 – happened regarding the quality of images under low light conditions, both through the front and rear cameras. However, when compared to the overall quality of images produced by the iPhone 13, for example, the S22 may fall a bit short, especially regarding the colorization of images.
But is still a phone capable of producing top-of-the-line imagery. It’s solid enough to be able to shoot video in a resolution up to 8K (something that the iPhone 13 doesn’t do, for instance). 8K video shooting can happen at up to 24 fps, and 4K can be managed at up to 60 fps.
On the downside, S22’s buyers are essentially unanimous regarding the battery life: it’s not good. That’s something that should be definitely kept in mind by any vloggers interested in the product.
- Frontal camera: 50 MP, f/1.8, 23mm (wide), 1/1.56″, 1.0µm, Dual Pixel PDAF, OIS; 10 MP, f/2.4, 70mm (telephoto), 1/3.94″, 1.0µm, PDAF, OIS, 3x optical zoom; 12 MP, f/2.2, 13mm, 120˚ (ultrawide), 1/2.55″ 1.4µm, Super Steady video
- Selfie camera: 10 MP, f/2.2, 26mm (wide), 1/3.24″, 1.22µm, Dual Pixel PDAF
- Video Quality: [email protected], [email protected]/60fps, [email protected]/60/240fps, [email protected], HDR10+, stereo sound rec., gyro-EIS
- Chip: Exynos 2200 (4 nm) – Europe; Qualcomm SM8450 Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 (4 nm) – ROW
- Display: 6.1 inches, 90.1 cm2 (~87.4% screen-to-body ratio)
- Weight: 167 g / 168 g (mmWave) (5.89 oz)
- Dimensions: 146 x 70.6 x 7.6 mm (5.75 x 2.78 x 0.30 in)
- Battery: Li-Ion 3700 mAh, non-removable
3. iPhone 12
- Ease of use
- Most compatible with other Apple products
- New double camera
- Still lacks low-light capabilities
I know plenty of people who are ‘Apple People’. To them, it’s ‘Apple or nothing’.
They don’t care that their phone doesn’t have all the capabilities that other phones do. They don’t care that it costs more. Apple is part of their identity.
And, thankfully, for any vloggers out there who fall into the same category, the iPhone 12 is going to enable you to maintain your lifestyle.
The camera is simply superb. They did this with smarter software configurations, rather than a significant change in hardware.
The combination of the two cameras, one wide and another ultrawide provide a powerful punch. They capture color accurately and the one even has a telephoto sensor, meaning it can get incredible detail from impressive distances—more so than just about any other phone on the market.
Additionally, Apple has paired a new sensor with a new chipset. This means incredible speed, Smart HDR, and Depth Control. It can get great shots in lighting that isn’t ideal (i.e. subject detail when the sun is in the background).
It is important to note that video doesn’t get true and total HDR, but the phone does have noticeably enhanced video quality.
This phone isn’t for every vlogger. For those needing to shoot in low-light situations, there are better options.
However, for those who need to be able to pull out their phone quickly and shoot something at the last minute, iPhone has the most user-friendly, simple interface. With little effort, vloggers and YouTubers can get high-quality, stable footage, while still having access to fancy features, like various studio lighting effects.
- Frontal camera: 12 MP, f/1.6, 26mm (wide), 1.4µm, dual pixel PDAF, OIS 12 MP, f/2.4, 13mm, 120˚ (ultrawide), 1/3.6″
- Selfie camera: 12 MP, f/2.2, 23mm (wide), 1/3.6″
- Video Quality: [email protected]/30/60fps, [email protected]/60/120/240fps, HDR, stereo sound rec.
- Chip: Apple A14 Bionic
- Display: 6.1 inches, 90.2 cm2
- Weight: 164 g (5.78 oz)
- Dimensions: 146.7 x 71.5 x 7.4 mm (5.78 x 2.81 x 0.29 in)
- Battery: Li-Ion 2815 mAh, non-removable (10.78 Wh)
- Amazing triple camera
- Consistent video quality
- Strong tracking autofocus
- You could get the previous models and still get a similar phone
The Galaxy S21 has a sensor larger than the IPhone 12’s, which makes it better for low-light recording.
Since the sensor of the camera is larger, it can capture more light, and thus it can produce a higher quality image with little noise when there’s not a lot of lighting.
This automatically makes the S20 better for recording and taking pictures at night than the iPhone 12.
And it gets even better if you get the S20 Ultra, which comes with an even bigger sensor.
In addition to this, the S20’s camera also comes with excellent Dual-Pixel autofocus, which is the best autofocus technology that will keep tracking your face as you move around while vlogging.
Also, its telephoto lens comes with 64MPs, which is a lot more than the iPhone’s 12MP. This allows it to take pictures with higher detail.
The camera does fall a bit short when it comes to Bokeh effect (the beautiful blurry background effect).
The iPhone can achieve a more intense Bokeh, but this is still one of my main choices for vlogging thanks to its reliable autofocus and higher quality in low light.
- Main Cameras: 12 MP, f/1.8, 26mm (wide), 1/1.76″, 1.8µm, Dual Pixel PDAF, OIS — 64 MP, f/2.0, 29mm (telephoto), 1/1.72″, 0.8µm, PDAF, OIS, 1.1x optical zoom, 3x hybrid zoom — 12 MP, f/2.2, 13mm, 120˚ (ultrawide), 1/2.55″ 1.4µm, Super Steady video
- Selfie Camera: 10 MP, f/2.2, 26mm (wide), 1/3.24″, 1.22µm, Dual Pixel PDAF
- Chip: Exynos 2100
- Display: 6.2 inches, 94.1 cm2
- Weight: 169g (5.96 oz)
- Dimensions: 151.7 x 71.2 x 7.9 mm (5.97 x 2.80 x 0.31 in)
- Battery: Li-Ion 4000 mAh, non-removable
- Great video quality
- Fast processor
- Video stabilization feature
- Wide and Ultra-wide rear cameras
- Poor fingerprint reading feature
- Too big and heavy
Google’s Pixel 6 may not be one of the most well-known top of the line smartphones on the market, but it definitely has good overall features and video quality good enough to give its competitors a run for their money.
Things are off to a good start here, with the help of Google’s tensor processor, which allows for tasks made through the phone to be completed extremely fast, including the ones regarding video recording, obviously.
The main rear camera it’s wide and has a 50 MP sensor and the secondary rear camera is a 12MP ultra-wide one, with a 114° field of view, capable of making open landscapes look particularly nice and, of course, well covered.
The phone has a number of other very useful features such as Cinematic Pan, Active Mode (for heavy movement), Dedicated Mode (for shooting distant objects), and obviously, a video stabilization mode.
Pixel 6 also seems to do a very solid job shooting videos in poor lighting conditions, showing off some good texture and minimal noise in nighttime or low light conditions video recordings in general.
In standard mode, you can record video in a resolution of up to 4K at 60fps with the main rear camera and 4K at 30fps with the secondary one.
On the negative side, a lot of people seem to complain about the poor quality of the phone’s fingerprint reading sensor. Some point out that the battery runs out pretty fast when using 5G too.
- Main Cameras: 50 MP, f/1.9, 25mm (wide), 1/1.31″, 1.2µm, Dual Pixel PDAF, Laser AF, OIS; 12 MP, f/2.2, 17mm, 114˚ (ultrawide), 1.25µm
- Selfie Camera: 8 MP, f/2.0, 24mm (wide), 1.12µm
- Chip: Google Tensor (5 nm)
- Display: 6.4 inches, 98.9 cm2 (~83.4% screen-to-body ratio)
- Weight: 207 g (7.30 oz)
- Dimensions: 158.6 x 74.8 x 8.9 mm (6.24 x 2.94 x 0.35 in)
- Battery: Li-Ion 4614 mAh, non-removable
- Great video quality
- Triple camera system
- Shoots video in a resolution up to 8K
- Great battery life
- Telephoto camera is only 8MP
The most advanced available smartphone model from OnePlus, the 10 Pro has an amazing triple camera system (co-developed by Hasselblad, by the way) that serves as a solid cornerstone for an amazing video producing capacity.
The main camera has a 48 MP Sony IMX sensor, then you have an ultra-wide 50MP camera with a 150° field of view, and a telephoto sensor with 8MP, which may be a low megapixel quantity for those interested in using the telephoto camera a bit more frequently.
The camera also offers great colorization on images, although some buyers point out a slight overall yellow tint in the images/videos produced by the phone. However, this tint seems to be present at a very minor level and doesn’t appear to bother most people that much.
There’s a solid video stabilization feature here, and the video recording in low light conditions – propelled by the Nightscape feature – seems to be competent, although it can’t provide outstanding images.
Video shooting can happen in a resolution of up to 8K at 30 fps max., 4K at 120 fps max., and 1080p at 240 fps., which all things considered, are pretty impressive achievements.
The phone also has great battery life, and such a battery can also be fully charged in a very quick fashion just by using the charger that comes along with the product. A great feature indeed for people looking forward to doing some vlogging content without having to stop to charge the phone so frequently.
The camera comes at a not so affordable price, which can be a downer for some.
- Main Cameras: 48 MP, f/1.8, 23mm (wide), 1/1.43″, 1.12µm, multi-directional PDAF, Laser AF, OIS; 8 MP, f/2.4, 77mm (telephoto), 1.0µm, PDAF, OIS, 3.3x optical zoom; 50 MP, f/2.2, 14mm, 150˚ (ultrawide), 1/2.76″, 0.64µm, AF
- Selfie Camera: 32 MP, f/2.2, (wide), 1/2.74″, 0.8µm
- Chip: Qualcomm SM8450 Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 (4 nm)
- Display: LTPO2 Fluid AMOLED, 1B colors, 120Hz, HDR10+, 500 nits (typ), 800 nits (HBM), 1300 nits (peak)
- Weight: 201 g (7.09 oz)
- Dimensions: 163 x 73.9 x 8.6 mm (6.42 x 2.91 x 0.34 in)
- Battery: Li-Po 5000 mAh, non-removable
- Best phone camera on the market
- Impressive pro features
- 4 rear cameras
- No Google apps
For vloggers who need a good-all-around camera phone, the Huawei P40 Pro is the answer. It captures well in just about any lighting situation, it has a great zoom range, and its overall video quality is amazing.
Huawei’s main flagship never disappoints, and the same thing can be said about the P50. Its 4-camera setup, which includes a monochromatic camera, is probably the best one in the smartphone market.
If you’re wondering what a monochromatic camera is, it’s a camera with a type of sensor that is able to capture more light and details than a normal camera, with the only disadvantage of lacking colors.
However, with this setup, both the monochromatic and the main camera will take the same picture and merge them so the result is a higher quality image with color.
Finally, at both 4k60 and 1080 up to 240fps. There is also stabilization in both the 23mm and the impressive 90mm telephoto camera.
It might not be able to record 8k like other cameras this year, but this is more of a marketing thing than anything meaningful. The difference between 4k and 8k is barely noticeable, and you need an expensive 8k TV to experience it.
The reason it’s so further down in this list is the lack of Google Apps. As a vlogger, you want all the native support to upload to social media and YouTube, and having a Huawei phone will make it more difficult.
If it weren’t for that, this phone would be our most recommended phone for vlogging, for sure.
- Main Camera: 50 MP, f/1.8, 23mm (wide), PDAF, Laser AF, OIS — 64 MP, f/3.5, 90mm (periscope telephoto), PDAF, OIS, 3.5x optical zoom — 13 MP, f/2.2, 13mm (ultrawide) — 40 MP, f/1.6, 23mm (B/W)
- Front 13 MP, f/2.4, (wide)
- Chip: Huawei Kirin 9000
- Display: 6.6 inches, 105.4 cm2
- Weight: 195g (6.88 oz)
- Dimensions: 158.8 x 72.8 x 8.5 mm (6.25 x 2.87 x 0.33 in)
- Battery: Li-Po 4360 mAh, non-removable
Don’t Forget Your Add-Ons
Whichever smartphone you choose in the end, you will need a selfie stick. Here I made a list of some options you can get straight from Amazon. Also, you will certainly want a microphone to go with it. There are extremely cheap mics for 10-20$ that will improve your audio a lot.
After these two cheap add-ons and a fast micro SD for 4k recording with decent storage, you will be good to go to start vlogging with your phone.
And finally, you can check here the best apps for vlogging.
Vloggers have a growing number of tools at their disposal. A great camera phone is one that is non-negotiable. However, when it comes time to pick and choose, the vast variety can be overwhelming. Properly vetting the options and identifying your device priorities is the most effective way of making the right decision.
The above list includes all of my favorite phones going into 2022. However, it is important to dig deeper before making the final call. Know what you want and do your research.
There are other excellent phones are the market and some of those could better fit your vlogging needs, especially for niche bloggers who want very specific features and functions. In the end, it’s worth the time and effort that a little research requires.
Will has been a full-time content creator since 2014. He’s an audio, video, and tech hobbyist dedicated to reviewing products and giving you the best tips he knows to grow your audience.