Phone cameras are getting better as well as featuring higher megapixel count and multiple image sensors. But finding a good camera phone under Rs. 10,000 price bracket isn't very easy. Companies do offer features such as dual camera setup and software tweaks to attract customers. However, in some cases, those are not more than a marketing gimmick. We tested some of the popular smartphone models in the sub-Rs. 10,000 price segment, including the popular ones from Xiaomi, Realme, HMD Global, and Asus, that are touted to take on the competition with their fascinating camera performance.
In this piece, we list the smartphone models that are currently available under Rs. 10,000 with the best camera results. We've notably restricted ourselves to the models that we've reviewed. Best camera phones under Rs. 10,000 right now are the Redmi Note 7, Realme U1, Nokia 5.1 Plus, Redmi 6 Pro, and Asus ZenFone Max Pro M2. All these phones are found to deliver comparable camera results, and none of them have received a camera rating less than 7 in our reviews. In addition to that, all of them have got an overall rating of 7 or higher, which means they're worth considering as all-rounders as well.
As for how we determine the camera performance, we capture daylight shots in HDR and non-HDR, as well as low light shots along with night mode, macro shots, and portrait shots, among other scenarios. We also test slow-motion videos, image stabilisation, and focusing capabilities to assess their video recording capabilities.
So without further ado, here is the list of top camera phone models under Rs. 10,000.
Best camera phones under Rs. 10,000
|Phone under Rs. 10,000||Overall rating (out of 10)||Camera rating (out of 10)||Price in India (as recommended)|
|Redmi Note 7||8||7||Rs. 9,999|
|Realme U1||8||7||Rs. 9,999|
|Nokia 5.1 Plus||8||7||Rs. 9,999|
|Asus ZenFone Max Pro M2||8||7||Rs. 9,999|
|Redmi 6 Pro||7||7||Rs. 7,999|
Redmi Note 7
Xiaomi's Redmi Note 7 (Review) has already influenced a large number of customers with its attractive specifications and design. However, one of the key highlights is its camera setup that includes two distinct sensors. The India variant of the Redmi Note 7 doesn't have a whopping, 48-megapixel camera that is featured on the Redmi Note 7 Pro (Review). But nevertheless, the phone performed pretty well in our review.
Colours and details were good enough in our camera samples, though sharpness was lacking a bit. Similarly, the artificial intelligence (AI) system of the pre-installed camera app on the Redmi Note 7 performed quite well in detecting objects such as buildings, plants, and flowers. The available depth sensor also helped deliver enhanced portrait shots. Further, there is a Night mode that essentially alters the ISO to brighten shots under low lighting conditions. The phone also has video recording support with modes such as time-lapse and slow-motion that worked well at the time of our review. However, we noticed that bright areas while shooting videos were often overexposed.
On the part of selfies, the Redmi Note 7 captured good selfies under fair lighting conditions. The phone also lets you add a bokeh effect, and its edge detection wasn't bad as per our review. Furthermore, the phone took good self-portraits in low light, though those were a little soft.
In terms of specifics, the dual rear camera setup of the Redmi Note 7 houses a primary 12-megapixel sensor (with 1.25-micron pixels) along with an f/2.2 lens and a secondary 2-megapixel depth sensor. The phone also has a 13-megapixel camera sensor at the front along with an f/2.0 lens.
Other specifications of the Redmi Note 7 include a 6.3-inch full-HD+ (1080x2340 pixels) display with a 19.5:9 aspect ratio, Snapdragon 660 SoC, 3GB/ 4GB RAM options, 32GB/ 64GB storage variants along with microSD card support (up to 256GB). The smartphone runs MIUI 10 based on Android Pie. Besides, it has Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth v5.0, Infrared, and USB Type-C port and packs a 4,000mAh battery with Quick Charge 4.0.
The Redmi Note 7 price in India starts at Rs. 9,999 for the 3GB RAM + 32GB storage variant, while its 4GB RAM + 64GB storage model comes at Rs. 11,999. It comes in Onyx Black, Ruby Red, and Sapphire Blue colour options.
If you're not in favour of picking the Redmi Note 7 for any reason, Realme U1 (Review) is also a considerable option specifically if you want a good camera phone under Rs. 10,000. In our review, we noted the Realme U1 does a decent job of blurring the background to offer a depth effect.
The camera of the Realme U1 uses a four-in-one pixel binning technology to deliver detailing shots by trading off the resolution. Also, the primary sensor was found to do a fair job with detail under natural light. The HDR mode additionally works satisfactorily. Similar is the case with the provided Super Vivid mode that offered highly saturated colours. The phone also captured decent-quality videos at the time of our review, though it lacks an electronic stabilisation.
Realme projects the Realme U1 as a selfie phone with features such as AI Beauty mode that we found to have done a good job in smoothing skin. The phone is also noted to capture detailed selfies with good skin tones and colours in general.
On the part of optics, the Realme U1 has a dual rear camera setup that includes a 13-megapixel primary sensor with an f/2.2 aperture and a 2-megapixel secondary sensor with an f/2.4 aperture. It also has a 25-megapixel Sony IMX576 sensor with an f/2.0 lens for selfies.
Key specifications of the Realme U1 include a 6.3-inch full-HD+ (1080x2340 pixels) LCD panel with a 19.5:9 aspect ratio, MediaTek Helio P70 SoC, 3GB/ 4GB RAM, and 32/ 64GB storage with microSD card support (up to 256GB). The phone runs Android 8.1 Oreo with ColorOS 5.2 on top. The handset also has Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth v4.2, GPS/ A-GPS, Micro-USB, and a 3.5mm headphone jack on the connectivity front and packs a 3,500mAh battery.
The Realme U1 price in India is set at Rs. 9,999 for the 3GB RAM + 32GB storage model, while its 4GB RAM + 64GB storage model is priced at Rs. 11,999. The phone comes in Ambitious Black, Brave Blue, and Fiery Gold colour variants.
Nokia 5.1 Plus
For nostalgic Nokia fans, our list has the Nokia 5.1 Plus (Review). The phone has a dual rear camera setup, just as the competition, and includes features such as Dual and P-I-P modes and Auto HDR mode. In our review, we found that the phone captures good details in landscape shots, given enough light. It also uses the secondary depth sensor to let you re-adjust the focus after capturing shots.
Macros on the Nokia 5.1 Plus were decent under artificial lighting at the time of our testing. Similarly, the phone does have a manual mode to let you make necessary adjustments manually to capture satisfactory shots. Video recording on the Nokia 5.1 Plus was also decent at the time of our review. The phone was able to put the shimmer effect under control in good daylight, though it didn't deliver that quality at night. There is also slow-motion video recording that enables 720p recording at 120fps.
The Nokia 5.1 Plus is also capable of capturing decent selfies under good light, though it doesn't work well in a low light environment.
In terms of hardware, the Nokia 5.1 Plus has a dual rear camera setup with a 13-megapixel primary sensor with an f/2.0 lens and a 5-megapixel secondary sensor. There is an 8-megapixel camera sensor at the front along with an f/2.2 lens and an 80.4-degree wide-angle lens for selfies and video chat.
Apart from the decent optics, the Nokia 5.1 Plus features a 5.8-inch full-HD+ (1080x2340 pixels) display with a 2.5D curved glass. It is powered by a MediaTek Helio P60 SoC, paired with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of onboard storage, expandable via microSD card (up to 400GB). The phone debuted with Android 8.1 Oreo, though it recently started receiving Android 9 Pie. Besides, it packs a 3,060mAh battery and includes connectivity options such as 4G VoLTE, Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth v4.2, GPS/ A-GPS, and USB Type-C.
The Nokia 5.1 Plus retails at Rs. 10,599 in India and comes in Gloss Black, Gloss White, and Midnight Gloss Blue colour options.
Asus ZenFone Max Pro M2
Asus ZenFone Max Pro M2 (Review) has also made it to our list of best camera phones under Rs. 10,000, thanks to its competitive camera performance. The phone comes with an easy-to-use camera app and has fair optics to deliver enhanced results. During our review, we the phone managed good colour reproduction with detailed macro shots.
In separating the subjects from their background, the Asus ZenFone Max Pro M2 did a fair job. The Portrait mode on the phone also offered equitable edge detection, though it sometimes it resulted in artificially shots. The ZenFone Max Pro M2 also supports 4K video recording, though electronic stabilisation is available at 1080p. The phone did a good job of reducing shakes at the time of our review.
Asus has provided a dual rear camera setup on the ZenFone Max Pro M2 that includes a 12-megapixel Sony IMX486 sensor along with an f/1.8 lens along with a 5-megapixel depth sensor. The phone also has a 13-megapixel selfie camera with an f/2.0 lens.
Other specifications of the Asus ZenFone Max Pro M2 include a 6.26-inch full-HD+ (1080x2280 pixels) display with a 19:9 aspect ratio and 2.5D curved glass, Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 SoC, 3GB/ 4GB/ 6GB RAM options, and up to 64GB of inbuilt storage. The phone was launched with Android 8.1 Oreo, though it recently received Android 9.0 Pie. It has 4G VoLTE, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth v5.0, GPS/ A-GPS, and Micro-USB port and packs a 5,000mAh battery.
The Asus ZenFone Max Pro M1 price in India starts at Rs. 9,999 for the 3GB RAM/ 32GB storage model, though it goes up to Rs. 13,999 for the 6GB RAM/ 64GB storage option.
Redmi 6 Pro
Our list ends with the Redmi 6 Pro (Review) that was launched indeed last year, but it is capable of competing against most of today's best camera phones under Rs. 10,000. The phone has features such as PDAF, Autofocus, and auto-HDR. We mentioned in our review that particularly the auto-HDR on the Redmi 6 Pro did a good job in balancing the exposure.
The Redmi 6 Pro also offered good detail in landscape shots in daylight and resulted in pleasing colours at the time of our review. The camera app on the phone is also simple for new users. Moreover, video performance during our review was also quite decent and stabilisation worked well with no visible jelly effect around the frame.
For selfies, the Redmi 6 Pro offered okay results under good light, though it turned low-light images grainy.
The Redmi 6 Pro sports a dual rear camera setup with a 12-megapixel primary sensor — coupled with an f/1.9 lens — and a 5-megapixel depth sensor. There is also a 5-megapixel selfie camera.
Major specifications of the Redmi 6 Pro include a 5.84-inch full-HD+ (1080x2280 pixels) IPS LCD panel with a 19:9 aspect ratio, Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 SoC, paired with 3GB and 4GB RAM options, and up to 64GB internal storage. The phone runs Android with MIUI 10. Lastly, it has 4G VoLTE, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth v4.2, GPS/ A-GPS, and Micro-USB, as well as a 4,000mAh battery.
The Redmi 6 Pro price in India starts at Rs. 8,999 for the 3GB RAM + 32GB storage configuration, whereas its 4GB RAM + 64GB storage model is available at Rs. 10,999.