Loads of phones come with dual cameras these days. The technology is standard on high-end smartphones from companies like Samsung, LG, Motorola, and Huawei. There are also plenty of budget-friendly dual-camera handsets available, so you can capture those fancy bokeh images without breaking the bank.
Even though more and more phones are now adding triple cameras on the back, the dual camera phones can still take excellent photos, thanks in part to better hardware and more advanced software features. If you’re in the market for a phone with a dual-camera setup, keep reading. You’ll find the best ones you can get at different price points below.
Samsung Galaxy Note 9: the best sub-$1000 dual camera phone
The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 has two cameras on the back — the exact same set of dual 12MP sensors as the older Galaxy S9 Plus, including the wide-angle dual-aperture lenses it debuted. Like the one on the S9 Plus, the Note 9’s primary lens can alternate between f/1.5 and f/2.4 for taking better photos in various lighting conditions. The other sensor is a telephoto lens. The cameras can also capture 4K 60fps videos and can be create Samsung’s AR Emojis.
The Note 9 includes some software additions that actually make it a better camera phone than the S9 Plus. They include a scene recognition mode, which figures out what you’re taking a picture of and automatically adjust the scene’s colors to help create a better photo. The other new software feature is called “flaw detection” feature, which will alert you, via machine learning, if it thinks someone in your camera photo has blinked.
The Galaxy Note 9 is one of the most powerful smartphones around, with the latest and greatest Snapdragon 845 or Exynos 9810 chipset under the hood (depending on the region) and 6GB or 8GB of RAM. The handset is equipped with a large 6.4-inch curved display, packs a big 4,000mAh battery, and is IP68 rated.
Samsung launched the Galaxy Note 9 for $999.99 back in August. Since then promotions and discounts have lowered the price by a few hundred bucks. It’s still an expensive phone, but you will be getting the best dual rear camera smartphone ever made, at least for now.
General specs and camera specs
- 6.4-inch Super AMOLED display with 2,960 x 1,440 resolution, 516 ppi
- Snapdragon 845 or Exynos 9810 chipset — depending on the region
- 6GB or 8GB of RAM
- 128GB/512GB onboard storage, microSD expansion up to 400GB
- Dual 12MP rear cameras, 8MP front camera
- Non-removable 4,00mAh battery
- Android 8.1 Oreo
- 161.9 x 76.4 x 8.8mm, 201g
- Wide-angle Super Speed Dual Pixel lens
- 12MP AF sensor
- Sensor size: 1/2.55″
- Pixel Size: 1.4µm
- Sensor ratio: 4:3
- 77-degree field of view
- Dual Aperture: f/1.5 mode, f/2.4 mode
- Telephoto lens
- 12MP AF sensor
- Sensor size: 1/3.4″
- Pixel Size: 1.0µm
- Sensor ratio: 4:3
- 45-degree field of view
- f/2.4 aperture
- Dual OIS (Optical Image Stabilization)
- VDIS (Video Digital Image Stabilization)
- Optical zoom: 2X
- Digital zoom: 10X
- Scene optimizer
- Flaw detection
- Modes: Live Focus, Auto, Pro, Panorama, Dual Capture, Super Slow-Mo, AR Emoji, Hyperlapse, HDR, Motion Photo
- Video recording: 4K 60fps, 4K 30fps, QHD 30fps, 1080p 240fps, 1080p 60fps, 1080p 30fps, 720p 960fps, 720p 30fps
Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus
As we mentioned, the Galaxy S9 Plus has basically the same dual 12MP camera sensors on the back, but lacks a couple of AI-driven software modes you may or may not want to use. If those modes are unimportant, you can get the S9 Plus for less than the Note 9. It’s an excellent smartphone overall, with some great camera hardware and software.
LG’s recent flagship has one standard and one wide-angle lens. The main sensor is a 16MP shooter with an f/1.6 aperture, OIS, and laser and phase detection autofocus. The secondary wide-angle sensor also has 16MP with a narrower aperture of f/1.9. and 109-degree field of view. It also has a lot of software features and modes, although its camera app can be confusing to use at first. It has an excellent portrait mode, and a dedicated food mode that takes great images for your Instagram account
Honor View 10: best sub-$500 dual camera phone
The View 10 is a high-end smartphone on a budget. It comes with the Huawei Kirin 970 chipset under the hood like the Mate 10 and P20 series along with 4 or 6GB of RAM, and it costs just $479. The dual camera setup features a 16MP f/1.8 aperture shooter and a monochrome 20MP f/1.8 secondary sensor for adding detail to color photos — or taking crisp B&W shots. Thanks to the chipset’s NPU, the camera also has a number of AI capabilities on board. It can recognize objects and scenes in a photo like sunny days, greenery, and even animals, and adjust its settings to make the image look better.
The Honor View 10 also features a 5.99-inch Full HD+ display with the popular 18:9 aspect ratio. It packs a 3,750mAh battery, headphone jack, and sports a metal body with thin bezels. Without a doubt, it’s one of the best smartphones you can get at this price point.
- 5.99-inch IPS LCD display with 2,160 x 1,080 resolution, 403 ppi
- Kirin 970 chipset
- 4/6GB of RAM
- 64/128GB of on-board storage, microSD expansion up to 256GB
- Dual 20 and 12MP rear cameras, 13MP front camera
- Non-removable 3,750mAh battery
- Android 8.0 Oreo
- 157 x 74.98 x 6.97mm, 172g
- Honor View 10 review: a OnePlus 5T challenger emerges
- Honor View10 vs Huawei Mate 10 Pro
- Honor View 10 vs OnePlus 5T: Flagship Killer Dethroned?
Motorola Moto Z3 Play
The Motorola Z3 Play is the first in the Moto Z Play series to pack in two rear cameras. However, only the main 12MP sensor is designed to actually take photos. The secondary 5MP sensor only creates depth information for the phone’s portrait mode. The phone’s camera app does include built-in Google Lens support, and you can also take cinemagraphs, which let you capture a picture with motion, and then you can select which parts of the photo move and which parts stay still. While we found the actual images taken with the Z3 Play pretty average, the addition of portrait mode and other advanced camera features for less than $400 is hard to beat.
The Essential Phone didn’t quite catch on as Andy Rubin hoped, but it’s not a bad phone. It has a gorgeous design, a durable titanium frame with a ceramic shell, and lots of power under the hood. Of course, it also sports a dual-camera setup on the back with two 13 MP sensors (RGB and Mono). While the camera didn’t get the best reviews when the phone first came out, a number of software updates have improved things since then.
The smartphone is powered by the Snapdragon 835 chipset, backed by 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. It has a notch and no headphone jack — dealbreakers for some. The Essential Phone was announced in May 2017, initially priced at $699. You can get it on Amazon now for less than $300.
Honor 7X: best sub-$250 dual camera phone
The budget-friendly Honor 7X comes with a 16MP primary shooter, backed by a secondary 2MP lens. The second lens is for those popular bokeh shots, which blur the background and bring the subject matter into stark focus. It doesn’t do as well as flagship smartphones, but that’s understandable given its affordable $200 price tag. Surprisingly, the 8MP front-facing camera can also add the bokeh effect to images, achieved through software trickery.
In their review, our very own Adam Sinicki and Lanh Nguyen called the Honor 7X “arguably the best value Android device ever made.” The mid-ranger offers a lot for the money, packing in a 5.93-inch Full HD+ display and the Kirin 659 chipset. The U.S. version offers 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage, and the rest of the world gets the 4GB RAM and 64GB storage variant. The smartphone also supports expandable storage, has a fingerprint scanner, and sports a metal body that looks and feels premium. All of that on a phone you can get for just under $200.
If you’re looking for a phone with dual cameras on a budget, the 7X might be up your alley. You can get it from Honor’s website in red, blue, or black.
- 5.93-inch IPS LCD display with 2,160 x 1,080 resolution, 407 ppi
- Kirin 659 chipset
- 3/4GB of RAM
- 32/64GB of on-board storage, microSD expansion up to 256GB
- Dual 16 and 2MP rear cameras, 8MP front camera
- Non-removable 3,340mAh battery
- Android 7.1.1 Nougat
- 156.5 x 75.3 x 7.6mm, 165 g
- Honor 7X review
- Honor 7X: Release date, availability, and price
- Honor 7X becomes #1 bestseller in Amazon unlocked phones category
Huawei Mate SE
The Mate SE is a slightly upgraded 7X sold under the Huawei brand. It comes with 1GB of RAM more (4GB) than the U.S. version of Honor’s device and double the storage at 64GB. It looks more or less identical but comes in different colors.
The rest of the specs — including display, chipset, and battery — remain the same. That means the smartphone comes with a dual-camera setup featuring 16 and 2MP sensors, a 5.93-inch Full HD+ display, and the Kirin 659 chipset. It’s also super affordable, although it costs a bit more than the Honor 7X. You can get it on Amazon for $239 in gold or grey.
Motorola Moto G6
The Moto G6 is another affordable phone with dual cameras, coming in at just $240. It sports a 12MP main sensor with a ƒ/1.8 aperture and a secondary 5MP RGB sensor you can use for portrait shots. We noted in our review the camera took some impressive photos with bright colors and lots of detail. The handset falls into the budget category based on the Snapdragon 450 chipset and 3 or 4GB of RAM it packs under the hood. It also has a fingerprint scanner with gesture support, a 5.7-inch Full HD display, and a 3,000mAh battery.
We think these are the best phones with dual cameras, but there are plenty of other great models out there. Which ones would you add to this list? Let us know in the comments!