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Best camera for TikTok: Great cameras and phones to help you go viral

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best TikTok camera
(Image credit: Getty)

So you've enjoyed watching TikToks, you're caught up on the latest trends and now you want to make your own. But what is the best camera for TikTok? Well, you'll usually find that you want to look for the best phone for TikTok instead. However, there are definitely some situations where you'll find that a 'proper' camera will give you the extra production value you need to take your TikToks to the next level.

If you're looking for the best phone for TikTok, you'll want to search for one that has a great quality selfie camera and a large, bright display. This is because you'll ordinarily find that you'll record TikTok videos while watching yourself in the front display of your camera phone. However, it's also worth considering what kind of cameras are featured on the rear of the handset as well. 

Some of the best camera phones feature four rear cameras, which generally tends to include a standard wide angle, a super wide angle, a telephoto and a macro lens. This can give you lots of creative flexibility when shooting your TikTok videos, so you might want to consider whether you might need the extra power that camera phones like this offer.

You might even want to consider the newly announced iPhone 13. While these new models won't ship until 24 September, you can compare the handsets here with our iPhone 13 vs iPhone 13 Pro guide. 

While the vast majority of TikToks are filmed on camera phones, not all of them are. There are some TikTok creators who shoot on cameras in order to take advantage of the superior image quality, different lenses and the shallow depth-of-field you can achieve with the best lenses for bokeh.

You might find that one of the best cameras for video will be perfect for shooting your TikToks. We've rounded up our favorite video-focused cameras that will give your footage some serious oomph, yet are lightweight and compact enough that they won't slow you down.

If you're serious about your TikToks, don't forget to invest in some great quality lighting. Whether you want colorful TikTok lights that brighten up your background, or one of the best ring lights to help illuminate your face, lighting can make all the difference.

Best camera or phone for TikTok

Best camera for TikTok: Best phones

(Image credit: Samsung)

This is the best camera phone for TikTok creators

Specifications
Release date: January 2021
Rear cameras: 108MP f/1.8, 10MP f/2.4, 10MP f/4.9, 12MP f/2.2 ultrawide
Front camera: 40MP
OIS: Yes
Weight: 227 g
Dimensions: 165.1 x 75.6 x 8.9 mm
Storage: 128/256/512GB
Reasons to buy
+Fantastic camera zoom+Beautiful display
Reasons to avoid
-A little pricey-No microSD card slot

If you're looking for a handset with an excellent camera, then the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra could be exactly what you're looking for. This camera phone features four rear cameras, including a 108MP f/1.8 main camera, a 12MP f/2.2 ultra-wide camera and two 10MP telephoto cameras – one with an f/2.4 aperture and 3x optical zoom and one with an f/4.9 aperture and a huge 10x optical zoom. It's worth noting that the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra is pretty big, offering a 6.8" screen size that users with smaller hands might struggle to maneuver. The Dynamic AMOLED 2X display features a 120Hz refresh rate for smooth scrolling and gaming experiences, HDR10+ support, 1500-nit peak brightness and a 1440 x 3200 resolution. 

In full: Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra review

best TikTok camera - iPhone 12 Pro

(Image credit: Apple)

The iPhone 12 Pro is perfect for creating or viewing TikTok videos

Specifications
Release date: October 2020
Rear cameras: 12MP 13mm f/2.4, 12MP 26mm f/1.6, 12MP 52mm f/2
Front camera: 12MP, f/2.2 TrueDepth camera
Dual OIS: Yes
Weight: 189 g
Dimensions: 146.7 x 71.5 x 7.4 mm
Storage: 128/256/512GB
Reasons to buy
+Triple-camera unit+New Apple ProRAW file format+LiDAR scanner+5G
Reasons to avoid
-'Only' 12MP camera sensors

The iPhone 12 Pro is one of the best camera phones currently available, featuring an impressive triple camera unit, including an ultra wide f/2.4 camera, a wide f/1.6 camera and a telephoto f/2 camera. Meanwhile, the front-facing TrueDepth camera features a 12MP sensor as well. There are plenty of new features on the iPhone 12 Pro, such as a LiDAR scanner – which will mean faster focusing in low light situations. The iPhone 12 Pro will also be able to use the new Apple ProRAW file format, which means users will be able to combine the great computational photography effects Apple is known for with the power of RAW files. Combined with the addition of 5G and the new Ceramic Shield display that has a 4x better drop performance, you just can't go wrong with the new iPhone 12 Pro!

In full: iPhone 12 Pro review

(Image credit: Google)

This is a great affordable camera phone for TikTok creators

Specifications
Release date: October 2019
Rear cameras: 12.2MP (27mm-equiv. wide angle lens, f/1.7, PDAF, OIS), 16MP (ultra wide angle, f/2.2)
Front camera: 8 MP, f/2, 24mm (wide), ToF 3D Camera
Weight: 151 g
Dimensions: 144.7 x 70.4 x 8.0 mm
Storage: 128 GB
Reasons to buy
+Great camera+Good battery life+Wireless charging
Reasons to avoid
-No expandable storage-No telephoto power-Midrange power

If you're looking for a fuss-free and capable point-and-shoot camera phone, then the Google Pixel 5 might be the handset for you. While the Google Pixel 5 might not have the most up-to-date tech, what it lacks in innovation it makes up for with reliability and usability. The rear dual camera unit on the Google Pixel 5 features a 12.2MP 27mm f/1.7 camera and a 16MP ultra wide f/2.2 camera, but it's the software that really elevates this camera to excellence. Meanwhile, the Snapdragon 765G chipset works well with the Android 11 OS for a lag-free camera phone experience. The Google Pixel 5 also has some exciting flagship features to offer, such as a 90Hz refresh rate display, water resistance and wireless charging. 

In full: Google Pixel 5 review

(Image credit: Basil Kronfli)

The 16MP selfie camera is great for creating TikTok videos

Specifications
Release date: Apr 2020
Rear camera: Main camera 48MP (f/1.8), telephoto 8MP (f/2.4), ultra-wide 48MP (f/2.2), depth 5MP (f/2.4)
Front camera: 16MP
OIS: Yes
Weight: 199g
Dimensions: 165.3 x 74.4 x 8.5 mm
Storage: 128 or 256GB
Reasons to buy
+Stunning screen+Stacks of power
Reasons to avoid
-No expandable storage-No periscope camera

For anyone who doesn’t need sensational telephoto imaging or 512GB storage, the OnePlus 8 Pro is a fantastic alternative to the much-loved Oppo Find X2 Pro. Running with the same screen and power – a 120Hz 6.78-inch QHD+ Fluid Display panel, plus a Snapdragon 865 – the 8 Pro is a true flagship. It also sports the same main camera sensor, Sony’s new IMX 689 sensor. So while it doesn’t get you as close to the action as some superzooms out there, it’s still boasts a cracking camera array, with a primary 48MP sensor with an f/1.78 aperture lens, a 3x telephoto with 8MP resolution, a 48MP ultra-wide, and a new Color Filter Camera, which can grab interesting looking shots that distort reality. The OnePlus 8 Pro can also track pets, and keep their faces sharp! Even if it isn’t necessarily the best smartphone at one thing in particular, the OnePlus 8 Pro is an across-the-board corker that brings Sony’s latest smartphone camera sensor to a newly affordable price.

In full: OnePlus 8 Pro: Hands on review

Best camera for TikTok: Best cameras

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Compact, lightweight and affordable – what's not to love?

Specifications
Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: APS-C
Megapixels: 24.2MP
Lens mount: Fujifilm X
Screen: 3in articulating touchscreen, 2,760k dots
Viewfinder: EVF, 2,360k dots
Max continuous shooting speed: 8fps
Max video resolution: 4K
User level: Intermediate
Reasons to buy
+4K video upgraded+Lightweight, ergonomic design
Reasons to avoid
-Sensor CMOS, not X-Trans

We loved the concept of the X-T100, as a kind of bridge between the high-end professional X-series models and the more entry-level shooters, so it was great to see the release of the X-T200, which builds on that concept while fixing a few of the issues with the original. Video has been vastly improved on the X-T200, with 4K now topping out at a frame rate of 30p rather than the X-T100's 15p. Sensor-wise, while you're still not getting the X-Trans chip used on the higher-end cameras, the X-T200's 24.2MP APS-C CMOS model is nothing to sniff at, and additional features like 8fps burst shooting do a lot to sweeten the deal. The camera tends to be bundled with the XC15-45mm F3.5-5.6 OIS PZ kit lens, making it a great starter choice for anyone considering their first Fujifilm camera. The big, vari-angle screen is great and the improved 4K video is a big step forward over the X-T100.

In full: Fujifilm X-T200 review

(Image credit: Canon)

This compact camera has a flip-down screen

Specifications
Type: Compact
Sensor: 1-inch CMOS
Megapixels: 20.2MP
Lens: 24-100mm f/1.8-2.8
Screen: 3-inch tilting touchscreen, 1,040,000 dots
Viewfinder: Electronic
Max video resolution: 4K
Mic input: Yes
Headphone port: No
Reasons to buy
+Easy live streaming+Microphone input
Reasons to avoid
-Expensive-4K clips capped at 10 minutes

One of the biggest bugbears vloggers and video makers have with Canon is the crop factor when shooting 4K on many of its cameras, but the G7 X Mark III bucks the trend – thank goodness. This high-end compact packs a similar body and an identical lens to the G7 X Mark II, but includes a new sensor and no 4K crop.

It was also the first camera of its kind with a microphone input – vital if you want clean audio, not to mention the ability to livestream straight to YouTube. This means that even if you’ve got an expensive cinema camera, if you also have a G7 X Mark III you can create a fuss-free live setup without any expensive capture cards and a PC.

With its flip-out screen, the G7 X III also gives vloggers a clear view of themselves when they shoot, and thanks to its 20.1MP 1-inch stacked CMOS sensor and Digic 8 processor it’s also able to capture great stills, so your custom thumbnails can pop nicely.

In full: Best cameras for streaming

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Great for vloggers, the A6400 has 4K video & a front-facing screen

Specifications
Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: APS-C
Megapixels: 24.2MP
Lens mount: Sony E
Screen: 3-inch tilting touchscreen, 921,000 dots
Viewfinder: Electronic
Continuous shooting speed: 11fps
Max video resolution: 4K
Reasons to buy
+Image quality and resolution+4K video performance+Sophisticated autofocus
Reasons to avoid
-Design feels dated

Not so long ago, any camera with a 180-degree front-facing screen was instantly dismissed as a ‘selfie’ camera, but the rise of blogging, vlogging, TikTok and Instagram has brought video to the fore, and the A6400’s front-facing screen sets it apart from many of its rivals and makes it a powerful and desirable tool for single-handed video shooters who want to talk directly to the camera. The A6400 is also a great camera for stills. We're not so keen on the design, which is largely unchanged since the original A6000 model, but it's not a deal-breaker given that the Sony is so good at video. 

It's not just the 4K video that makes this camera stand out as a vlogging tool, but its state of the art autofocus system, and especially its Eye-AF performance. It's sold body only (handy if you already have Sony lenses), but if you intend buying it with a kit lens we'd recommend paying the extra for the Sony 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 lens, which has much longer reach and better optical quality than the standard 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 PZ lens. Since the Sony A6400 came out, we've had the cheaper A6100 and the more advanced A6600 – but we think the A6400 still hits the vlogging sweet spot between convenience, cost and quality.

In full: Sony A6400 review

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The X-T4 has amazing 4K video capabilities...

Specifications
Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: APS-C
Sensor resolution: 26.1MP
Lens mount: Fujifilm X
4K frame rates: 60, 50, 30, 25, 24p
4K sensor crop factor: 1.1x
Standard ISO range: 160-12,800
Memory cards: 2x SD/SDHC/SDXC (UHS II)
Reasons to buy
+60fps 4K and 10-bit internal capture+F-Log and HLG modes+In-body image stablization+A brilliant stills camera too

Fujifilm was a relatively late arrival in the mirrorless camera 4K video market, but with the X-T3, and now the X-T4, it's shoved the competition aside and gone straight to the top of our list. Vloggers might look for something lighter, cinematographers may choose a more powerful established alternative, but for everything in between, the X-T3's specification speak for themselves. Most rival cameras can capture 4K video up to a frame rate of 30p (normal speed), but the X-T4 can shoot 4K at up to 60p, for a smooth 2x slow motion effect. Not only that, it can also capture the slightly wider Cinema 4K format at the same speeds. 

There's more. Most 4K cameras capture 8-bit video internally to memory cards, but the X-T4 can capture higher-quality 10-bit video internally and, if you connect an external recorder, it can save video at a higher 4:2:2 colour sampling quality. To cap it all, the X-T4 comes with a high dynamic range F-Log mode as standard (missing or a paid extra on some cameras) and HLG (hybrid log gamma)  mode via a firmware update. A key advantage that the new X-T4 has over its X-T3 predecessor is built-in 6.5-stop image stabilization - which is a godsend to anyone making videos without a tripod. 

In full: Fujifilm X-T4 review

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Louise Carey

With over a decade of photographic experience, Louise arms Digital Camera World with a wealth of knowledge on photographic technique and know-how – something at which she is so adept that she's delivered workshops for the likes of ITV and Sue Ryder. Louise also brings years of experience as both a web and print journalist, having served as features editor for Practical Photography magazine and contributing photography tutorials and camera analysis to titles including Digital Camera Magazine and  Digital Photographer. Louise currently shoots with the Fujifilm X-T200 and the Nikon D800, capturing self-portraits and still life images, and is DCW's ecommerce editor, meaning that she knows good camera, lens and laptop deals when she sees them.