There was a time when your music player and mobile phone were two different devices. If you wanted to call someone, you would take out your cell phone. Conversely, if you wanted to listen to music, you would break out your MP3 player or iPod. With the advent of smartphones, everything, including your music player, can be found all in one device. And, with larger memory storage becoming the new norm, it is even possible to store thousands upon thousands of music files on your smartphone.
Alternatively, you can ditch the saved files and simply stream music online on platforms like Amazon Music, Spotify, Pandora Music, and such. Naturally, though, you would want to get the best phone in the market. But, what exactly is the best phone for music? Here is a list of mobile phones that come in to satisfy your need for a phone with superb audio quality.
What to look out for in an audio phone?
When it comes to music, we all have different tastes, criteria to judge whether or it’s nice or otherwise. However, all music lovers would agree that music are best played with a high-quality sound system. That’s when you can really sink into your favourite piece of music and to understand the character of the music. When it comes to choosing an audio phone, don’t choose them like how you choose your car. Things just aren’t the way it’s supposed to be when it’s compared that way.
In fact, to accurately determine which audio phone suits you best, there are plenty to consider. You’ll need to consider the type of audio files you’re streaming, the memory storage to download your songs and playlists, battery lifespan, and the environment you’ll be listening to these audios. Ultimately, how much you’re willing to pay for it. Though mobile phones aren’t gonna be as great when compared to any sound systems. But it’s still best to own a mobile phone that gives you the audio satisfaction on the go. Remember, your decision is also subject to whether or not you’ll be listening to your music with a headphone or on the stereo.
Below is a rundown of the best audio phones that need to be on your list.
Google Pixel 3a
- – Good bang for the bucks
– Stylish and contemporary design
– Amazing audio quality
– Comes with the ‘Now Playing’ feature to identify songs around you
- – Doesn’t come with wireless charging
– Must add on for Pixel Buds
For those on a budget, the Google Pixel 3a promises great speaker quality without breaking the bank. If you are not very particular about bass and warmth, then this is one of the best phones for music that easily gets the job done for music lovers.
Additionally, it has an edge over a lot of other modern smartphones. Unlike its sibling, Google Pixel 4, which is next on this list, Google Pixel 3a comes with a headphone jack. For many people, that makes a world of difference. Having a headphone jack means you don’t have to shell out extra money for a pair of wireless earphones, which can be very expensive. You can dust off your old pair of wired earphones and listen to music all day long with Google Pixel 3a.
On the downside, in terms of music quality, there are much better phones in the market today. Sure, Google Pixel 3a boasts decent sound quality, but it is definitely not the best. Moreover, this smartphone does not come with expandable storage, which means you are limited to a maximum of 64 GB. There is also no wireless charging and the chipset under the hood, a Snapdragon 670, is significantly less powerful.
You can get the Google Pixel 3a starting at $329.90 on Amazon. (Prices vary.)
Google Pixel 4
- – Feature contemporary and captivating design
– Superior camera quality
– Powerful sensor for different functions
- – Does not support expandable storage
– Earbuds are excluded
If you want a somewhat similar audio quality to Pixel 3a but with better overall specs, then get Google Pixel 4. The sounds coming through its speakers are crisp and has better bass than its younger sibling, so you will definitely enjoy your music experience with the Pixel 4. Additionally, Google has really stepped up its game in terms of design and features. With this handset, you can look forward to superb camera quality, a smooth 90Hz display, and amazing video stabilization.
However, Google Pixel 4 does have its cons as well. For instance, this smartphone does not come with a headphone jack onboard. That means you will have to purchase a pair of wireless earphones or headphones if you want a more private listening experience. If you can afford it, that is totally fine, given that Pixel 4 is one of the best phones for music. But, if you are strapped for cash, then there is a good chance you will have to save up more money just so you can listen to music exclusively. Other cons include no fingerprint scanner, an unimpressive battery, and limited market availability.
You can get the Google Pixel 4 for $718.79 on Amazon. (Prices vary.)
Huawei Mate 20 Pro
- – Vivid color screen display
– Superb camera quality
– A good option for a high-security phone
– Fast Android processor
- – Limited memory expansion
– Does not come with an audio port
For stereo speakers with great specs, Huawei Mate 20 Pro should be your go-to smartphone. It was rated to one of the best Huawei phones for a reason. This music phone comes with one speaker found at the notch up top and another speaker hidden in the USB-C port, giving it a stereo effect. It also has decent sound quality that casual music listeners will find satisfactory.
As one of the best phones for music around, the Mate 20 certainly does not disappoint. It comes with high-end specs, including the latest HiSilicon Kirin 980 processor and 6 GB of RAM. Additionally, the Mate 20 has an impressive triple camera setup at the back and a decent 24-MP camera in the front.
However, the Mate 20 Pro has been criticized for its somewhat squeaky sound, even though it is one of the best in terms of volume. Furthermore, since one speaker is located inside the USB-C port, the sound is significantly diminished when you are charging. Other than that, Huawei Mate 20 Pro is a decent phone with impressive specs and a lower price compared to other high-end phones in the market today.
You can get the Huawei Mate 20 Pro for $468 on Amazon. (Prices vary.)
- – Modern with stunning holographic phone casing
– Good camera quality even in a low light environment
– Fast charging
– Good price to flagship-grade performance
- – Not water resistant
– Does not support 4K 60fps video recording
Not only Huawei P30’s superb camera quality is worth the rave, but this phone also boasts on its excellent speaker with crisp and surreal audio quality. On speaker mode, the sounds coming out are full-bodied and do not distort even on max volume level. That is not surprising, considering this handset comes with Dolby Atmos sound. When using earphones, the sound quality remains largely the same. Plus, you do not even need to use Bluetooth earphones because this smartphone comes with the typical headphone jack.
Other specs include a formidable HiSilicon Kirin 980 processor, a 6.1-inch OLED display, 128 GB of expandable storage, and 6 GB of RAM. It also has a stirring triple camera setup at the back and a 32-MP camera for selfies, including wide-angle shots and in-camera customization.
Unfortunately, Huawei P30 is not completely flawless. It has no resistance to water and dust, so you should take extra care of this smartphone once it is in your hands. There are also no stereo speakers. All in all, though, if you want a smartphone with decent specs that gets the job done, you can bank on Huawei P30. However, it is not available with cellular providers like Verizon, Sprint, etc.
You can get the Huawei P30 for $469.99 on Amazon. (Prices vary.)
iPhone 11 Pro
- – Featuring 4GB RAM
– Long battery life and fast charging
– Outstanding video quality and stabilization
– Built-in bionic chip in the iPhone
- – Night photography not as outstanding
– No headphone jack
– Steep price
When it comes to the best phone for audio, it is hard to argue with the iPhone 11 Pro. With its stunning speakers, the iPhone 11 Pro certainly has the best music quality. They come equipped with Dolby Atmos, which gives the audio a full-bodied texture.
Like most of its recent flagships, Apple’s latest iteration does not come with a headphone jack onboard. That means you will need to shell out more money for a pair of wireless earphones. You can choose Apple’s own AirPods, which pair better with the iPhone 11 Pro and offer a cleaner sound quality. Moreover, the wireless connection is far more stable. However, you can also choose other brands, which will work fine with the handset.
Of course, a lot of people see the lack of a headphone jack as a drawback. Many rely on wired earphones and do not have the budget to buy a pair of Bluetooth AirPods. Moreover, the iPhone 11 Pro still has a pretty big notch up top and does not come with an audio adapter. It is also relatively difficult to transfer files, which is a simple process on Android. Some have also criticized its cameras for subpar autofocus and night mode.
Also, the iPhone 11 Pro is incredibly expensive. The version with the smallest storage, at 64 GB, costs $999. If you want the largest storage, 512 GB, it will cost you $1,349.
- – Competitive pricing for its quality
– Flagship performance
– Supports Dual-SIM
- – Non-waterproof
– Might be too large to fit in pockets and to hold
Avid Apple fans on a budget can get the iPhone XR and still get the full iPhone experience. In terms of audio quality, this affordable handset boasts an entertaining and musical sound that other brands should definitely take note of.
Other than that, the iPhone XR comes with great battery life, even more than its more expensive siblings. It also sports a high-end design, similar to other Apple offerings, and gives you an option to choose from multiple colors. Under the hood, the iPhone XR boasts powerful components and an IP67 rating. It also comes with Face ID, so you can up your smartphone security.
On the downside, even though the iPhone XR has a relatively similar design to other flagships, it does have thicker bezels. This makes the screen-to-body ratio less impressive. It also has a lower quality display, and the camera leaves users wanting more. However, this smartphone is one of the best phones for music for its affordable price. The iPhone XR is certainly the best phone for music if you are on a budget.
You can get the iPhone XR for a starting price of $479.99.
LG V50 ThinQ 5G
- – Supports Dolby Vision and comes with P-OLED display
– Loud and clear stereo speakers
– Excellent battery life
– Good price to quality
- – The front camera does not come with autofocus
– Screen display not as bright as expected
Not a lot of people think of LG as their first choice when it comes to smartphones. However, if you are very particular about audio quality, it would be a smart decision to take an extra careful look at the LG V50 ThinQ 5G.
The LG V50 ThinQ boasts “Quad DAC” hardware, which basically turns audio into the purest form by increasing the signal-to-noise ratio. With this hardware, this handset can rival even the most revered speakers on the planet. Furthermore, it comes with a headphone jack, which is a plus for most people. When used with wired earphones, the sound quality is crisp and full-bodied. The hardware even makes quieter earphones more impressive. Furthermore, you get to customize your sound, which is something every audio geek will love.
The LG V50 ThinQ is not just superb in the audio department. It also boasts an excellent battery life, a powerful Snapdragon 855 chipset under the hood, great cameras, and a stunning display. However, this LG phone is not without its flaws. The selfie camera is not very impressive, and neither is the 4K video recording feature. You also can’t get this smartphone everywhere because of its limited availability.
All in all, if you are an audiophile looking for the best phone for music, consider the LG V50 ThinQ. You can get it for $1,000 (or $41.66 per month for 2 years) with Verizon.
Motorola Moto G6
- – Bang for the bucks
– Comes with TurboCharge
– High-end dual-camera quality
- – Does not come with 4K video recording
Budget phones usually have a reputation for subpar performance and bad audio. However, with Motorola Moto G6, you get the total opposite. For its affordable price tag, the Moto G6 manages to deliver a good performance. It comes with a Snapdragon 1.8 GHz octa-core processor, a 3,000 mAh battery, and a fingerprint scanner, and runs on Android 8.0 Oreo out of the box.
In terms of audio, the Moto G6 is definitely one of the best phones for music for its price range. It boasts Dolby Audio, which provides pretty decent sound quality, as well as a headphone jack. That means you can listen to music and watch movies privately without needing a pair of wireless earphones.
On the other end of the spectrum, some critics have noted that its sound is not that exciting. Additionally, the display is not up to par with all the other smartphones in the market. Taking its affordable price into account, though, there is no denying that Motorola Moto G6 is one of the best phones for music that is worth considering.
Motorola Moto G6 is available for $249.99 on Amazon. (Prices vary.)
Razer Phone 2
- – Professional phone design perfect for gamers
– Great stereo speakers and audio quality
– Powerful battery life
– 8GB RAM
- – Gets heated quickly especially for high graphic resolution games
Many gamers agree that the audio is quintessential when you’re gaming. That said, if you’re in search of a gaming phone with outstanding audio quality that pledges to elevate your gameplay, then the Razer Phone 2 is for you. Playing your favorite song on this handset will not feel like a private experience at all. Its speakers are incredibly loud, which means you can easily immerse yourself in the music without disruptions. Though that does not come as a surprise considering its Dolby Atmos stereo speakers with THX-certified amplifiers. Other than that, the Razer Phone 2 boasts an impressive battery life, a relatively powerful processor under the hood, and a decent screen resolution.
On the downside, the Razer Phone 2 has taken a cue from Apple and removed the headphone jack. Without a headphone jack, you will need to buy a pair of wireless earphones. However, if you wish to use wired earphones, this handset comes with a 3.5mm adapter, which includes a 24-bit DAC for better music quality. Additionally, while the speakers give great volume, the audio can sound a bit strained at maximum capacity.
You can get the Razer Phone 2 for $799 on Amazon. (Prices vary.)
Samsung Galaxy A10
- – Good camera quality in natural and low light conditions
– Feature high-end processors
– Fast fingerprint detection
– Crisp and loud stereo speaker
- – Average screen display resolution
– Non-water resistant
– Limited sensors
A relatively new entry, Samsung’s Galaxy A10 is a budget-friendly option offering great specs. Audiophiles will not exactly line up for this handset, but those who are not too picky about their sound quality will have a satisfactory experience. Speakers-wise, the A10 does not boast much. However, when paired with a decent pair of headphones, Samsung’s custom optimizations can really boost the quality.
In addition to its decent sound, Samsung Galaxy A10 also boasts a number of other specs. It has a 6.1-inch display, a respectable processor under the hood, 2 GB of RAM, and a 13-MP main camera. It also runs on Android 9.0 Pie out of the box.
On the flip side, the Samsung Galaxy A10 does have its fair share of cons. For instance, while it does have a 3,400 mAh battery, it does not have very impressive charging abilities. You are also limited to purchasing this phone with GSM carriers like T-Mobile and AT&T. Other than that, if you want an adequate smartphone that gets the job done, you can bet on Samsung Galaxy A10.
Samsung Galaxy S10+
- – Comes with ultra-wide camera
– Offers depth sensor
– Active noise cancellation
– Dolby Atmos support
- – Pricey
– The front camera doesn’t look appealing
Released last year, Samsung Galaxy S10+ is a force to be reckoned with. It comes with a 6.4-inch display, a Snapdragon 855 chipset onboard, a powerful 4,100 mAh battery, and Android 9 out of the box. Sound-wise, it boasts great output, wired or not, with little to no distortion even at high volumes. Its Dolby Atmos hardware is put to good use, giving the audio a full-bodied texture.
On the downside, Samsung Galaxy S10+ might have too much mid-bass weight. It has also been criticized for its lack of autofocus for the ultra-wide camera. Additionally, before the update on June 18, the fingerprint scanner was not working properly. So, if you have yet to update your phone, make sure to do so immediately.
Overall, Samsung Galaxy S10+ packs a whole lot of punch for its price. It is not the most affordable out of the smartphones on this list, but it is definitely not the most expensive either.
You can get the Samsung Galaxy S10+ for $849.99.
Sony Xperia 1
- – Excellent stereo speakers and audio quality
– Fastest face detection camera function
– Dolby Atmos sound
- – No audio jack
– Does not come with wireless charging
For formidable speakers with a unique vibration, get Sony Xperia 1. While Sony is not exactly the first brand that comes to most minds on the subject of smartphones, Xperia 1 is still worth a look. This handset comes with stereo speakers and a new feature called dynamic vibration — which basically means your phone can vibrate to the beat of the music. Apart from that, this top-end device also boasts great specs.
Conversely, Sony Xperia 1 does not come with a headphone jack onboard, which disappointed many. In addition, this handset lacks night mode, autofocus for the ultra-wide cam, and less-than-stellar battery life. It also does not come with wireless charging, unlike many other top-end phones.
You can get Sony Xperia 1 on Amazon for $699.99. (Prices vary.)
Which Smartphone Is the Best Phone for Music?
In the end, crowning the best phone for music is only something users can decide. Each device has its own pros and cons, and every customer is different. You might be more concerned about the price than the specs, whereas other people might put more weight on battery life compared to the sound quality. All of these phones have impressive audio. It all depends on what you are looking for and how much you are willing to pay for it.