If you’re looking for the best camera app for Android in 2023, you’re in the right place!
Most Android smartphones have solid cameras out-of-the-box. But by doing a quick install of an Android camera app, you can instantly unlock a TON of advanced functionality that will take your smartphone filming to the next level.
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Whether you’re looking for the best free Android camera app or something more professional, there’s a DSLR camera app that will suit your needs.
In this guide, we’ll take a look at all the leading alternative camera apps right now and share our top pick for the BEST Android Camera App in 2023!
Our top recommended Android camera apps are…
Let’s get started.
Honorable Mention: Open Camera
Open Camera might not be the BEST camera app but it does get an honorable mention. It’s an awesome manual camera app. Best of all? It’s a completely free camera app.
It has a decent amount of features and control, but nowhere near as much as the next two camera apps we’ll share.
So if you want more control than your stock camera apps but don’t want to spend any money, that’s where Open Camera comes in.
Android Camera App #1: Protake
Protake is an awesome camera app. It’s got a super clean, intuitive and easy to use interface.
We love how fast it is to jump between the key functionalities right from the main screen.
You can switch between automatic mode and Pro Mode super quickly. But Pro Mode is really where it’s at…
There are heaps of cool features and manual controls inside Protake’s Pro Mode. This is where you can enable things like scopes and histograms. You can literally just swipe between them.
The recording formats and settings can be accessed at the top of the main screen. This isn’t just a display of information (like most apps), these are actual buttons that you can tap to directly open up the full settings. It’s awesome that you can access these so quickly.
You have great control and easy access to settings like:
- Shutter speed
Let’s dive into some of the other awesome features.
There are a bunch of presets you can choose from or you can manually set your Kelvin rating and tint.
Another incredible feature is how easy it is to adjust your audio inputs and volume levels. One thing that could be improved here is the size of the audio bars. They’re quite small, so it’d be great if they took up the whole left side so there could be some more detail. Other than that this feature is awesome.
There’s a huge range of color profiles and filters if you download the Cinematic Looks add-on.
Plus you’ll also find some beauty filters – this isn’t something we’d use but it’s cool that they have the option in here!
There’s decent hardware support for things like anamorphic lenses, depth of field adapters and even things like Zion Gimbals.
Other Cool Stuff
You can lock the orientation of your screen to be in portrait mode or landscape mode. This is an absolute dream if you’re going to be moving around while filming. It’s such a pain to have your phone switching interface and changing up everything when you move for a different shot!
We are looking specifically at camera apps for VIDEO here, but it is worth mentioning that Protake also works great as a photo app as well.
There is a free version of Protake but this only gives you access to the automatic mode. If you want to unlock Pro Mode and all the more advanced features, you’ll need to jump on the Protake Plus subscription.
Protake Plus currently costs $13.99 for the first year. After that, it costs $19.99 per year.
The paid subscription allows you to install the app on three different devices and across different platforms. So if you have an Android and iOS device, you could install it on both.
Overall, Protake is an amazing camera app for anyone who’s looking for the next level up from their native phone camera app. This third party camera app has some great pro-grade features while still being really easy to use.
If you’re looking for the most amount of pro-grade features, that’s where the next option comes in.
Android Camera App #2: FiLMiC Pro
FiLMiC Pro is the next level when it comes to Android camera apps. There is some overlap and similarities with other camera apps like Protake but FiLMiC Pro offers so many more pro-level features.
People use FiLMiC Pro to create movies and documentaries – that’s how advanced the tools are!
Having said that, FiLMiC Pro has had an overhaul recently – not just of the camera app itself but also of the pricing model.
Previously, there was a one-time fee for lifetime access to the app. However, they’ve now moved to a subscription model, even for the users who had paid for lifetime access.
So they’ve definitely upset a few people with this decision. But we’re looking at this totally objectively, almost as if it’s a completely new app.
FiLMiC Pro Features
To be honest, we were already big fans of the old version but the new version is a MASSIVE step up.
There’s a ton of awesome features so we’ll just cover off the ones we think most people will find useful.
One of the biggest improvements is to the overall interface. It’s now so much faster and easier to navigate the app and this really flows through to the usability.
You can access the main functionalities right from the main screen, without needing to dive into menus upon menus to find the setting you’re after.
The recording settings and formats are accessible at the top of the screen. Just like in Protake, these settings can be adjusted just by tapping on them.
From the main screen you can also:
- Adjust audio inputs and volume levels
- Switch between basic and pro audio level readings
- Access the Custom Button Function (you can assign access to your most used features in this button!)
Focus and exposure can be adjusted simply by moving the corresponding circle or square around the screen. For greater control, you can open up the slider controls which allow you to get really granular.
There’s great control over your white balance with a bunch of built-in presets. But if you want to get more granular, you can set your own custom presets which allows you to manually dial in
While Protake had good hardware support, FiLMiC Pro again takes this to the next level. It actually has the most amount of hardware support out of any camera app.
It also supports things like Clean HDMI output and anamorphic lenses.
This is a feature we absolutely love. It allows you to overlay different aspect ratios or different guides onto your videos. You can use that either as a preview to see what your video would look like in the ratio, or you can actually crop it to that aspect ratio.
This is awesome for creating content on multiple platforms.
FiLMiC Pro Remote App
This companion app lets you remotely control and monitor FiLMiC Pro from another device. So you can set your primary device up to record and then control it from a secondary phone or tablet. The FiLMiC Pro Remote App is honestly amazing.
FiLMiC Pro Pricing
You can purchase a weekly or yearly FiLMiC Pro subscription:
- $2.99 per week or
- $49.99 per year
So it’s definitely not on the cheaper end of things!
But if you think of this as a video creation tool, it’s actually much cheaper than buying a dedicated device with similar features.
Overall, this is a super powerful app. Like we said, people are literally using it to make movies and documentaries! So you want advanced features that are still intuitive and easy to use, FiLMiC Pro is definitely one to check out.
What’s The Best Camera App For Android?
The best camera app for you will come down to your individual needs.
If you’re on a tight budget, Open Camera is a great camera app that helps you unlock some of those more advanced features and controls.
Protake is a great mix of auto settings and pro-grade tools. It has a really easy to use interface, making it really fast to go and create content.
Or if you’re looking for the most advanced, professional features then FiLMiC Pro would be the one for you.
Now that you’ve got an alternative camera app sorted, why not learn how to level up your Android filming.
Find out our top Android filming tips and tricks in our free 12 Step Guide To Filming on Android. With the help of this PDF guide and the right camera app, you’ll be filming videos like a pro in no time!
What is the best camera app for Android?
The best camera app for you will depend on your needs. If you want a free camera app, Open Camera is a great choice. If you’re a beginner to intermediate user, Protake is an awesome app. Or if you’re looking for the most advanced features, FiLMiC Pro will be up your alley.
How can I make my Android camera better?
Installing a third party camera app is an amazing way to make your built in camera better and level up your smartphone filming.
What is the alternative to Google Camera app?
Instead of using the Google camera app, you can download and install an alternative camera app such as Open Camera, Protake or FiLMiC Pro.
Is there an app for better camera?
Yes, there are tons of camera apps that will majorly improve your native camera. Check out the guide above to find out which one is right for you.
Camera App Tutorials:
Check out an up-to-date list of all the gear, software & tools we use and recommend right now at Primal Video on our resources page here!