Why would you be interested in the best budget camera phones? The best camera phones are found among premium flagships, for a clear reason: advanced camera technology is expensive. It costs a lot to develop a fantastic camera. And this is why almost no cheap smartphone in the history of mobile phones, has been known for great photography. Thankfully, that does not mean that good photography cannot be found at lower price ranges.
In this article, I list a number of best budget camera phones you can buy today. As we are looking at budget smartphones, the phones considered all cost between $300 and $500 US dollars. This is the price range in which you can still find some really good phone cameras outside of the category of premium flagship phones.
Google Pixel 6a
In the budget smartphone market, there are few cameras that can touch what Google does with its budget models. And in 2022, the Pixel 6a delivers very good photography, and at a more pocket-friendly price than flagships. If you want the very best budget camera phone available today, buy a Google Pixel 6a. It will set you back by just $449.
Apple iPhone SE (2022)
Apple’s latest budget model is next in line. It isn’t quite close to the Pixel 6a in terms of actual photography and video recording, if we are being honest. But if you won’t use anything other than an iPhone and you are on a budget, this is the best budget camera phone for you. How much it it? Just a little less expensive than the Pixel 6a: $429.
OnePlus Nord 2 5G and OnePlus Nord 2T 5G
Were you expecting to see a OnePlus smartphone as a top budget option? You weren’t? Too bad. The OnePlus Nord 2 5G is widely acclaimed for being a well-rounded mid-range smartphone, and one of the best phones you can buy for around $400. It also has solid cameras that deliver really good photos (for the price). And it takes its place as one of the best budget camera phones available in 2022. It will set you back by just $399.
Its slightly upgraded variant, the Nord 2T 5G, has a better processor and faster charging, and it maintains the good photography that the Nord 2 is known for. if you can find the Nord 2T, it is the better of both models, and it costs a little less than, or the same as, its older sibling.
Google Pixel 5a
Last on this list is the Pixel 5a, a solid camera phone that will cost you just about $400. It is well built and delivers the pure Google experience that Pixel loyalist swear by. Just be ready to deal with some of the issues that have plagued Pixel phones for some years now, especially that overheating problem. You shoot a few photographs or capture a few minutes of video, and the phone warms up significantly. I know that first-hand, because I have used one. If you live in a cold/temperate climate, you might have little to worry about concerning the overheating. But if you live in tropical climes, give it some thought.
if you really are into mobile phone photography and do not want to spend premium money, these are the best budget camera phones you can buy in 2022.
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Founder of MobilityArena. Yomi’s journey in mobile started in 2001. Besides obsessing over mobile phones, he also started creating WAP sites (early mobile-friendly websites created with WML). He began writing about phones in 2004 and has been at it since then. He has owned over 200 devices, from Symbian, Palm, PocketPC/Windows Mobile, BlackBerry/BB10, webOS, Windows Phone, Firefox, Ubuntu Touch, to Android, iOS, and KaiOS operating systems.