A compact, impact-resistant 4K camera made to be taken anywhere. Includes a 3.5-millimeter mic adapter for high-quality audio recording. TimeWarp 2.0 produces incredible slow motion video in 4K.
Out of the box, the HERO8 requires an update, which fixes some image stabilization and freezing issues.
Especially affordable. Stereo speakers. Sharp 1080p video. Wide field of view. Easy to clip to any PC monitor. Features two microphones. Automatic light correction. Includes video editing app.
Not for mobile vloggers.
Smooth and detail-rich 4K video. Slim and featherweight. Easy to use. Premium sound quality. Monitor rotates 180°. Face recognition. Bluetooth connectivity.
A fairly pricey vlogging camera.
A more affordable 4K vlogging camera. At 30 FPS and 4K resolution, videos are smooth and crisp. Lightweight design. Also has a 120 frames per second 720p slow-motion mode. Reliable optical image stabilization. Large three-inch LCD screen.
The lens thread accepts 55-millimeter lenses, so you may need an adapter. Disappointing focus.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
If you want to take your written blog to the next level, consider video blogging, or vlogging. With vlogging, you can give your fans a whole new perspective on your message.
To make the most of your video blog, you need a high-quality camera that’s easy to use. Although any digital camera or smartphone camera can shoot vlog-worthy video, vlogging cameras have specific features that simplify the process.
Though modern smartphones have high-tech cameras, the video and audio quality is always better on a vlogging camera, as these are optimized specifically for taking video. Vlogging is more professional than everyday video capturing and therefore requires higher-grade equipment to achieve a professional-looking product.
Furthermore, vlogging cameras have features like optical image stabilization and large image sensors, plus you have the option to add an external microphone to capture sound farther away from the camera. If you really want to produce a well-made and high quality video, a phone camera won’t cut it.
As you study these cameras, you might be a little surprised to learn that many digital cameras also work well as vlogging cameras. In fact, you may already be using a digital camera for your videos. However, there are a few features that set the best vlogging cameras apart from the competition, features that can make your video easier to shoot and your channel really stand out.
Audio recording: A vlogging camera has a simple microphone built into the case, so you can easily record audio when you’re near the camera. Look for a model that has a port for plugging in an external microphone for those times when you’re standing far away from the camera.
Image sensor size: A large image sensor gives you better results when shooting in low light. Find a camera with an image sensor of at least one inch for the best results.
LCD screen: You’ll have an easier time recording video if you have a camera with a swivel LCD screen. The swivel screen can be flipped 180° so you can see it while you’re recording. This makes it possible for you to frame the shot properly at all times. Having a touchscreen is helpful, too.
Travel vlogging: If you’ll be vlogging while away from home, you’ll want a small camera that’s easy to carry. You might want a zoom lens, too, so you can shoot objects in the distance. Additionally, optical image stabilisation counteracts any vibrations while you're walking and recording at the same time.
Action vlogging: If you’re planning to vlog your experiences in action, from biking to snorkeling, a typical vlogging camera won’t do the job. Action cameras allow you to capture footage in even the most rugged conditions. These can mount to your gear to show first-person views, or you can hold them in order you to video yourself; overall, they’re able to get whatever shot you need.
When looking for the best camera to capture footage for your video blog, it’s important to understand your video resolution options. Most cameras can shoot more than one by simply adjusting the camera settings. This feature can be helpful when you need to conserve storage space on a memory card, which is accomplished by shooting at a lower resolution.
4K video: A 4K resolution camera provides extremely sharp video quality with a recording resolution of 3840x2160 (otherwise known as 4K). Among vlogging cameras, 4K usually is the maximum video resolution you’ll find. Occasionally, a vlogging camera can shoot better than 4K resolution. However, because most display screens are limited to 4K, higher resolution isn’t really necessary at this time.
One downside to 4K video is it requires quite a bit of storage space. You might need multiple memory cards on hand if you plan to shoot a lot of 4K video.
Quad HD video: Some vlogging cameras give you the option of recording in Quad HD (or QHD) video resolution, which records 2560 x 1440 pixels (or 1440p).
Not a lot of display screens can show 1440p video at its native resolution, usually downscaling it to full HD, so it’s more common for vloggers to shoot at 4K or full high definition (full HD) rather than QHD.
Full HD video: Vloggers often record full HD video, which has a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels (or 1080p). It provides excellent video quality while occupying roughly one-quarter of the storage space of 4K video. Older or less expensive cameras are often limited to full HD resolution or less. You will need a relatively new or more expensive camera to achieve 4K resolution.
HD video: HD video measures 1280 x 720 pixels (720p). It requires about one-half the storage space of full HD video. When viewing 720p HD video on a smaller screen, such as a computer display, tablet, or smartphone, it appears sharp.
SD video: Standard definition video (SD) records 640 x 480 pixels at a 4:3 aspect ratio. Although modern television rarely uses SD video, it’s still used in Internet video because it loads very quickly. However, it doesn’t have the overall quality of full HD, QHD, or 4K resolution video.
You can find basic vlogging cameras for less than $200, perhaps even as low as $100. These cameras usually have optical image stabilization, and they’re lightweight for use on the go, but they won’t offer many other features to simplify the process, such as swivel display screens. Many of these won’t be able to record full HD video. They have small image sensors, too, so they struggle with recording in low-light conditions.
These vlogging cameras cost from $200 to $400. In this price range, you might be able to find a camera with one or two high-end features, but it’s rare to find one with three or more. They can shoot full HD video, and some may shoot at QHD or 4K, too. You can also sometimes find a swivel LCD with a touchscreen in this price range. Some of these cameras have large image sensors, making them good choices for shooting in low light.
Cameras that provide several desirable features for vlogging cost at least $400, and can be as high as $2,000. In this price range, nearly every camera has a large image sensor and excels in low-light situations. Nearly all of these cameras have microphone ports and can shoot 4K video. However, you might have to shop around to find one that has a swivel LCD screen.
Q. Can I use my vlogging camera for everyday photography, too?
A. Yes, although some will be better at video recording than still image photography. If taking still images is important to you, shop around to find a vlogging camera that excels in both areas.
Q. How can I avoid a shaky image?
A. Modern digital cameras usually have optical image stabilization built in (sometimes shortened to optical IS). This feature automatically adjusts the position of the camera’s internal components to compensate for tiny movements as you hold the camera. Optical IS doesn’t overcome huge bobbles, but it works well for tiny tremors. Always look for a camera with optical IS rather than digital IS, which isn’t as effective.
Q. What is the best vlogging camera when shooting in dark conditions?
A. A large image sensor (in terms of physical size) will give you the best results in low light. Large image sensors include one-inch sensors, 4/3 sensors, APS-C sensors, and full-frame sensors. Look in the camera’s specifications to find the image sensor size.