Best vlogging camera under $200

I have been looking online for the best vlogging camera under $200. All the cameras that I have found on blogs and websites just have not seemed to be any good.

When I was writing my best vlogging camera under $100 I knew not to expect too much. I knew that 720p would be the standard and even the quality of that 720p would not be great. But when I started researching this topic I found that most of the cameras suggested were 720p cameras.

I expected to start seeing a lot more 1080p vlogging cameras. I was wrong. The reason why this shocked me is because you can get a smartphone for that price that has 1080p video recording.

Like in my post for the best vlogging camera under $100, I will say this. If you have a decent smartphone, something better than a Samsung Galaxy S4 then use your smartphone and spend that $200 on other things like a microphone and tripod.

But I digress.

Best vlogging camera under $200

Nikon COOLPIX S6900

best vlogging camera under $200: Nikon S6900

The Nikon COOLPIX S6900 is almost at the top end of this budget. For that price you get a decent enough camera.

It has a really awesome 12x optical zoom. This is not extremely useful when it comes to vlogging, but depending on the type of vlog that you do it could be useful.

It also has 24MP which is another thing that isn’t really useful for vlogging. However, having this means that at least you get a decent vlogging camera as well as a nice point and shoot camera for photos.

The Nikon COOLPIX S6900 has one crucial feature at this price range. 1080p video recording. This is a big step up from the 720p cameras of a similar price. 1080p has almost twice the number of pixels that 720p has.

This camera has one drawback for a vlogging camera. It has no image stabilization. This is not a massive issue since generally video editing software will be able to help you out with that.

Overall, this is a good camera for the money.

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YI 4K Action and Sports Camera

best vlogging camera under $200: YI 4K Action Camera

This is where things at this price point really start to get interesting. The funny thing is I didn’t see any other suggestions for this camera on other blogs, even though it has a 4 star rating by more than 640 people.

Below I will put a few links to YouTube videos where people are really liking this camera a lot.

Back to the YI Action camera as a vlogging camera.

The Yi Action camera can not only do 1080p, but it can do 1080p at 120fps. If you want, it will also do 4K at 30fps, 2.7k at 60fps and 720p at 240fps! This little camera is absolutely fantastic.

It comes with image stabilization so that you do not have shaky video.

If you want to take pictures while you are vlogging. The YI Action camera will allow you to shoot in RAW. Something that high end DSLR’s have and that professional photographers use.

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Polaroid Cube+

best vlogging camera under $200: Polaroid Cube+

Another action camera. I actually featured the Polaroid Cube HD in my post with the best vlogging camera under $100. It was my personal favorite.

The Polaroid Cube+ kicks it up a notch though. Instead of just 1080p, it now has 1440p video recording ability. Which is great, it is not as good as 4K but it is a big step up from 1080p video.

This camera also increases its video recording time from 90 minutes on the Polaroid Cube HD to 107 minutes on the Polaroid Cube+. That is an 18% improvement.

It also keeps the 124 degree ultra wide lens. This is what made it my favorite camera the last time. Some other actions cameras have super wide lenses which do not work well in all situations. This lens on the other hand works really well.

The Cube+ also comes with video image stabilization which is very important when recording any kind of video, not only vlogging.

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GoPro Hero 5 Session

best vlogging camera under $200: GoPro Hero 5 Session

Last but certainly not least. I think we can all agree that GoPro make some really great little action cameras. And it could be considered the best vlogging camera under $200.

When I saw this for just under $200 I couldn’t believe it. Mind you it seems like it might be on special so just double check the price if you want to buy.

This camera is great. There is no other word for it.

It can record video at 4K. It has a time lapse feature built in which is a really nice thing to have.

This camera is waterproof. So it is great if you make adventure vlogs or vlog about extreme sports etc.

Like the Polaroid Cube+ this camera also has video image stabilization which like I said before is a really great thing to have.

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Best vlogging camera under $200: Polaroid Cube+

I was going to pick the GoPro. The only reason why I didn’t is because I am not 100% sure about what the price will be in the future.

The Polaroid Cube+ is the cheapest camera on this list and it does everything that one needs and more.

But just because I say this, do not be put of the YI 4K Action Camera. That is another great camera. And making the decision between the two is quite difficult. At the end of the day you cannot go wrong getting either one.

 

If you want to know more about what makes a good vlogging camera check out my post here.

If you already have a DSLR you can take a look at my post here to help you with what makes a good vlogging lens.

 

5 Best Vlogging Cameras Under $100

So you are looking for the best vlogging camera under $100?

Well you have come to the right place.

Before we begin. Finding a vlogging camera that costs $100 or less is quite a struggle. Just know that getting a camera at this price point it will not have the best quality video but it will be good enough to start with.

5 Best Vlogging Cameras Under $100 (Quick Navigation)

Sony DSCW800

Canon PowerShot A2500

Canon PowerShot A810

FITFORT Action Camera 4K

Polaroid Cube HD

 

Two more things before we get into the details.

  1. If you do have the budget or you able to wait a little longer to be able to save to around $200 then I would definitely suggest doing that. The difference in quality is quite big between these cameras and $200 cameras.
  2. My personal opinion is to use your smartphone. If you have a smartphone anything from a Samsung S4 and up. That will be much better to start with for the following reasons:
    1. You already have the smartphone so you do not have to spend any money on a camera
    2. You can easily buy one of the small Gorilla pods to have a better grip on your phone while holding it, or to use it as a normal tripod which can be handy.
    3. You can use your remaining budget to get a cheap lavalier mic to use with your phone which will boost your audio quality quite dramatically

 

5 Best Vlogging Cameras Under $100

Sony W800

The first camera on this list is the Sony W800 point and shoot. This is the best camera on the list, the main reason for this is that it has optical image stabilization, 720p at 30fps and has its widest focal length is 26mm.

Optical image stabilization will make a big difference to your videos and your viewers will thank you for it. Have you ever seen those videos on YouTube that are shaky and terrible to watch? Well, that is what happens when you do not have optical image stabilization. It makes your video a mess and will really turn people away. One thing I will say is that if you are thinking of making videos where you do not walk around at all and mainly just sit a desk or something like that, then having optical image stabilization doesn’t make a difference.

As with most of the cameras at this price point, the Sony W800 only has 720p video at 30fps. To be fair 720p is still a good enough resolution for online video and most people will not have an issue with that.

This camera also comes with 5x optical zoom. This is not a massive amount of zoom but it decent enough. Generally with vlogging you won’t be using the zoom too many depending on the type of vlog you want to make.

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Canon PowerShot A2500

The Sony W800(above) and this camera are pretty close to one another. The reason why the Sony is a bit better is because it has optical image stabilization as well as 720p 30fps video recording capabilities. The PowerShot A2500 also has optical image stabilization and 720p video recording, but it can only record at 25fps. It would make much of a difference but generally having higher fps video is better.

Other than that the Canon A2500 is right up there. It also has 5x optical zoom which is nice to have.

Like I said previously, this camera records video at 720p which really is good enough for online video. One of the benefits of recording at 720p is that when you need to edit your videos you will not need such a powerful computer to do it. The higher the resolution of the video the more computer power it takes when editing and exporting that video.

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Canon PowerShot A810

Again, this camera is similar to the other two. In this price range most cameras are going to be very similar.

The Canon A810 has a 16MP sensor that can record at 720p at 25fps which is the same as the A2500. This camera also has 5x optical zoom.

The big difference between this camera and the two above is that it does not have optical image stabilization. But it does have digital image stabilization. Digital is not as good as optical but it is better than not having any. In some video editing programs they give the option to stabilize the video which is nice. Having to do that is an extra step, so it is nice to have something built in at least.

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FITFORT Action Camera 4K

This is the first and only 4K camera on our list. And it has raving reviews. It has almost 5 stars with over 2300 reviews which is incredible!

There is another thing that separates the FITFORT from the previous cameras and that is that this is an action camera and not a point and shoot. This is actually a really good thing. Why would I say that? One unique thing about action cameras is that they often have ultra wide lenses which is great for vlogging. At the same time some might find that action cameras are too wide but that is up to you. I personally like the look in some situations.

But lets get back to the FITFORT. It has a 12MP sensor so you can take decent still images with this camera. But the main feature of this camera is the ability to output video at 4K! In fact with this camera you have quite a few recording options.

Recording Options:

  • 4K at 25fps
  • 2.7k at 30fps
  • 1080p at 60fps
  • 720p at 120fps

This is another reason that makes this camera special. All these modes allow you to be more creative with what you are filming. The above cameras would record video at a maximum of 30fps, this camera can do 120fps, that means you can do some really great slow motion clips with this.

Another great feature of this camera is that it comes with 19 accessories and 2 batteries which is amazing. Those 2 batteries might not seem to be useful but it can just make your life so much easier. Also some of the accessories make this camera waterproof for up to 100ft, so if you plan on doing some extreme adventures or just want to vlog while you are at gym and maybe swimming. This is the perfect camera for you.

There is big downside to this camera though. It has not image stabilization which can be an issue. To get around this you either need to not care about this feature or you will need to get some video editing software that can stabilize the video in post processing.

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Polaroid Cube HD

Another lifestyle/action camera. The Polaroid Cube does not have all the features and accessories that the FITFORT camera does. But that doesn’t mean that it is a bad camera.

This is a fantastic little camera. It can record video at 720p or 1080p. Which means that only the FITFORT can record at higher resolution than this camera on this list!

Like the FITFORT camera, the Polaroid CUBE also has an ultra wide angle lens. The difference is that the FITFORT’s lens is 170 degrees wide and the Polaroid is 124 degrees wide. For most people this will be a much better choice when it comes to vlogging. This is more than wide enough to get the scene in the video, with not looking too distorted.

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The Best Vlogging Camera Under $100: Sony W800

The reason that this is the best vlogging camera under $100 is due to the fact that it does pretty much everything. It doesn’t do anything particularly brilliantly but it does the job.

Now, while I say that the Sony W800 is the best vlogging camera under $100 I would personally go with the Polaroid CUBE. Reason being is that it has the ultra wide lens. It has some accessories, one of which make it waterproof. It shoots video at 1080p and it is super small. All I would do is make sure that my video editing software can do video stabilization.

The only reason I would consider the Polaroid CUBE over the FITFORT is due to how wide the FITFORT lens is. For me it is a little too wide for everyday vlogging use. But don’t get me wrong, it is a great little camera. If you will be vlogging extreme sports and the like the FITFORT is the way to go without a doubt.

 

If you would like to know more about what makes a good vlogging camera you can read my post here. And if you want to read more about what makes a good vlogging lens and why I say ultra wide lenses are the best for vlogging, you can took a look at my lens guide.

Best vlogging camera 2018

Every year cameras get better. But what is the best vlogging camera?

In this post I will go through what makes a good vlogging camera. I will also tell you what the best vlogging camera for 2018 is and why it is the best vlogging camera.

Canon SL2/200D

 

What makes a good vlogging camera?

  1. A good vlogging camera will allow you to attach an external microphone.
  2. Flip out screen. When vlogging being able to see the screen is a massive plus.
  3. Interchangeable lenses. This is not a must but it is extremely useful, the next point has more detail.
  4. Ultra wide. Some compact cameras have decently wide lenses but ultra is they way to go, it allows for more of the scene to be captured in the video.
  5. Full HD. 4K is all the rage today, but working with 1080p footage is much easier and less time consuming. It is also cheaper since you do need to have a high spec computer to work smoothly with it.

Those are the main points that make a good vlogging camera.

The most important of those points however is the microphone. When vlogging you need to have good audio quality. This can make or break your vlog. If you have poor audio quality people simply will not watch your vlog.

Flip out screens are extremely useful when vlogging. Being able to see what the camera is seeing is huge. This allows you to see if there is enough light coming through to the sensor, or if you are in focus or not. Some cameras even allow you to change settings with the screen.

Interchangeable lenses is more of a nice to have. It will allow you to try different things. Having a wide angle lens is fantastic on a vlog as it will show more of your surroundings. Being able to change the lens on your camera also allows you to try out different techniques. Getting a blurry background is one of those techniques that a lot people really like. I have a post detailing what makes a good vlogging lens here.

4K video required? I do not believe that 4K is ready yet for most people. It is getting there slowly though. The main reason I do not think that 4K is needed is because of computer hardware and internet speed. Having to upgrade your computer can be a costly exercise. If you do not have a fast internet line you might have to convert your 4K video to 1080p anyway which just means that you wasted your money on a 4K camera.

 

So what is the best vlogging camera in 2018?

This depends on what you want to do in general. But for me, the best vlogging camera in 2018 is the Canon 200D.

The reason why I think that the Canon 200D is the best vlogging camera is because it has everything that one needs.

Canon 200D features:

  1. It allows for an external microphone which is incredibly important.
  2. Can record video at up to 1080p/FullHD
  3. Has a flip out screen
  4. Interchangeable lenses
  5. Light weight
  6. Inexpensive compared to other DSLR’s

Again the biggest point here is the external microphone. The camera comes with a hotshoe which the microphone will attach to as well as having a microphone port on the side of the camera.

FullHD video recording at up to 60 frames per second. This is great, it gives you the ability to shoot some slow motion video if you want to which can add that extra bit of quality to a vlog if used correctly.

The Canon 200D also has a flip out screen which as discussed before is a great help when vlogging. The ability to change settings and see in real time what the video looks like is extremely useful. There is nothing worse than recording a great vlog only to realize you cannot see anything.

This camera has an APSC sized sensor and therefor mainly uses the Canon EF-S lenses. However, it also allows you to use the Canon EF lenses which are for the bigger more professional camera bodies. This is great because it gives you a wide selection of lenses that you can choose from.

DSLR’s can be heavy and expensive. The Canon 200D is none of those in the DSLR world. It has a light weight body which is another great feature for vlogging. Carrying a big heavy camera around for hours is not fun. Also the camera is relatively inexpensive.

 

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To learn more about what makes a good vlogging camera you can take a look at my other article over here.

Best lens for vlogging

Best lens for vlogging: EF 16-35mm f2.8L III USM FSLPicking the best lens for vlogging can be a TOUGH choice.

It doesn’t have to be.

Actually picking the best lens for vlogging is extremely easy.

In todays post I will going through what the best lens for vlogging is for Canon and Nikon platforms as well as tell you why these are the best lenses.

 

Lenses in this article

 

What makes a good vlogging lens

Before we get into the lenses lets just talk about what makes a good vlogging lens.

The main attribute to look for when picking out a vlogging lens is to look for wide or ultra wide lenses.

When I say wide of ultra wide I am talking about a focal length that starts at around 16mm(35mm equivalent). Having a wide view will allow you to get more of your surroundings in shot and will make it easier to keep yourself in frame.

Another important aspect of a lens that makes it good for vlogging with is having a zoom lens. Zoom lenses allow you to change your focal length at any time without having to change the lens itself.

 

Canon best lens for vlogging

Canon 10-18mm

The best vlogging lens for APSC Canon DSLR’s has to be the Canon EF-S 10-18mm()

This lens is fantastic, it is inexpensive(as camera equipment goes), light and easy to use and will fit on any APSC canon DSLR camera(70D, 80D, 7D Mark II, etc).

One of the most popular vloggers on YouTube uses this lens combined with his Canon 80D.

If you have a crop sensor Canon DSLR camera and you want to start vlogging this is the go to lens to start with.

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Canon 16-35mm F4

The 10-18mm is the best lens for vlogging for APSC Canon DSLR’s. If you want the best vlogging lens for Full Frame Canon cameras then you will be much better of using the Canon 16-35mm F4()

This is another fantastic lens from Canon. This lens might not be as light as the 10-18mm that you see above but this is part of Canon’s Professional line up.

This Canon 16-35mm also has some nice features like weather sealing which means you do not have to worry too much about it if it happens to get a bit wet from rain etc.

For more info about this lens you can check The Digital Pictures review.

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Nikon best lens for vlogging

Nikon AF-P DX NIKKOR 10-20mm f/4.5-5.6G

Nikon needed a good inexpensive ultra wide lens for their DX DSLR cameras and this 10-20mm() lens is it.

This 10-20mm lens is a superb choice for vlogging when using a Nikon camera. It is a DX lens which means that is for DX Nikon DSLR’s(d7500, d7200, d5300, etc).

The Nikon 10-20mm is light weight, near silent auto focus and inexpensive.

One of the downsides of this particular lens is that it has no buttons, consequently all the controls are in the cameras menu system.

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Nikon 16-35mm F4G

If you have a full frame camera or you want to use the more “Professional” line up from Nikon then the Nikon 16-35mm F4() is the perfect lens for that.

This lens is by no means inexpensive but it is built well and has wonderful image quality.

Just like the 16-35mm Canon lens, this lens is not as light weight and small as the previous lens I spoke about. Having said that, it is built to be more durable for any conditions.

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Conclusion

Any one of these lenses are great for use as a vlogging lens.

If you want more information about what to look for when buying a vlogging lens you can take a look at this post.

 

 

Best DSLR and vlogger camera accessories under $50

Getting into any sort of photography or video hobbies can be expensive but the accessories do not have to be. I have done some research to try and find some great inexpensive camera accessories that could help you get a better shot or just make your vlogging life easier.

DSLR and vlogging camera accessories for under $50

Camera cleaning kit

Camera accessories: cleaning kit 1

 

Camera accessories: cleaning kit 2

 

Camera cleaning kits are super useful. Often one will watch a vlog on YouTube and you will see this mark on the image. That is either from the lens being dirty or the sensor being dirty. It is good practice to clean ones camera and if you notice these spots when you are editing your camera then try and clean it before your next vlog. These kits will help you with that task and are well worth the investment.

 

Sensor cleaner 

Camera accessories: sensor cleaning kit

 

Gorilla pod

Camera accessories: gorilla pod

The gorilla pod is used by some of the biggest and most popular vloggers on YouTube. This is one item on the list that is not a nice thing to have but a must have.

It allows you to get the camera further away from you than just holding your camera out. You can get a better grip because it can bend and move how you need it to.

One of the nice things about gorilla pods over normal tripods is that they can bend like I mentioned before. As I mentioned this allows for a better grip when holding the camera but it can also allow you to place you camera on many types of surfaces. The bendy legs can wrap around a light pole or a branch for e.g.

Lens Pen

Camera accessories: Lens pen

 

Memory card holder

Camera accessories: Pelican memory card case

One of my favorite camera accessories on the list. Quite cheap but always useful. One needs more than one memory card and they are not the most rugged of items. This little case will add that extra protection to the memory cards to make sure that they are safe. If you lose your memory card or it breaks by accident that could mean days worth of footage has been lost if you have no backed up. Well worth the investment and a fantastic camera accessory that every vlogger should have.

Cheap mic

Camera accessories: Lav mic

 

Even if this is just an extra it is worth the purchase. Time and time again YouTubers mics break. Most of them have more than one mic especially if they are vloggers. Having a backup mic is generally a good idea and for the price of this little mic it is well worth it and wont scare the bank. Using this as your main mic can be a good idea too particularly when you are in a crowded and noisy environment.

 

LED continuous light

 

I wanted to put “extra battery” on this list as having one or two more batteries can be extremely useful. The only issue were the prices. I couldn’t find consistent pricing for batteries but you might  be able to find some for under $50 depending on your camera. Another useful accessory or item is the battery charger, that way you can charge multiple batteries at the same time. I have seen a few of those for around $50.

 

Conclusion:

Out of this list my favorite item would the be one of the camera cleaning kits. They are very useful and help out with photo and image quality potentially. Sometimes when I watch vloggers on youtube they have these dirty marks on either their sensor or their lens and I find it very distracting. So the cleaning kit is my pick of the bunch.

 

If you are looking to buy a new camera of lens take a look at my vlogging camera buyers guide and my post about what to look for when buying a new lens.

Best camera for vlogging: Buyers guide

This should be easy. I mean, there has to be a single camera that will fit most peoples vlogging needs right? An answer is never that simple I’m afraid. So in this post I am going to list a few features that I believe the best camera for vlogging needs and by doing that I am hoping that we end up with a good answer. Lets get started

Below are the requirements and nice to have features that the best camera for vlogging should have.

Requirements:

  • 1080p 60fps video recording
  • Decent battery life
  • APSC sized sensor as a minimum
  • Interchangeable lenses
  • Hot shoe
  • External mic jack
  • Flip out/up screen
  • As small as possible

Nice to haves:

  • 4K video
  • In body image stabilization
  • Mirrorless

So the required features are non negotiable. Some of the features like 4K will be required in the future but at the moment I think that 1080p is good enough for most online videos and particularly when vlogging. Having to edit 4K video can be tough and you need a decent PC to handle it easily.

Looking at those requirements there are loads of options. Canon, Nikon, Sony, Fujifilm. All of those brands have cameras with APSC sized sensors or larger. All of these brands make great cameras, some are better than others with regards to video recording. So for this post I am going to remove Nikon and Fujifilm from the options. Nikons are much better now with video and Fuji have also improved their video quite a bit but Canon and Sony do quite well with video.

LINE UP – BEST CAMERA FOR VLOGGING:

  • Canon 80D
  • Canon M6
  • Sony A6500
  • Sony A7S II

That is a nice short list. Basically those requirement have removed all the point and shoot cameras as well as the M43(Micro Four Thirds) cameras. There is absolutely nothing wrong with those cameras and in some circumstances when a small camera is more valuable than image quality then they would outshine the larger cameras. Most of the time for vlogging one does not need the smallest camera. None of the cameras above a very small but two of them are small while the other two a quite a bit larger but still not massive.

Best camera for vlogging: Canon lineup

Canon 80D

Camera for vlogging: Canon 80D

The Canon 80D(Body only link) is a great camera and Canon has really stepped up their APSC game with this camera. The 80D introduced a new sensor that has much improved dynamic range than their previous APSC cameras had. The 80D even out performs the Canon 7D Mark 2 with regards to dynamic range and low light performance, which is great considering that the 7D Mark 2 is Canons flagship ASPC camera.

The 80D’s predecessor, the 70D, has been a favorite amongst vloggers and YouTubers in general and the 80D has improved on the 70D. Like the 7D Mark 2 the 80D outperforms the 70D by an even greater margin in terms of sensor quality.

Canon have improved on the 70D for video with the new 80D. One of the great new improvements is its new autofocus system. Autofocus is an extremely important feature when it comes to video and the 80D does extremely well with autofocus. It can be annoying when a camera hunts for focus while recording video. While the 80D might hunt in some cases it is mostly spot on and with the new sensor it has much better autofocus in low light situations compared to the 70D.

The autofocus and sensor upgrades are the biggest points with the 80D. It has everything else. It has an APSC sized sensor. It has interchangeable lenses and because it is a Canon there are is a massive range of lenses that one can choose from. It has decent battery life, it is not small but not too large either. The 80D records video at 1080p 60fps and has a hot shoe and external mic jack. It also comes with a flip out screen. On the 80D the screen flips out to the side and can be rotated to face you while you are recording a video or vlogging.

Conclusion: Canon 80D

The 80D comes with all the features that I have put in the required list but it has non of the nice to have features. It would have been nice if Canon had added 4K video but it all depends on what kind of videos one is making. All in all, the Canon 80D is a fantastic camera for vlogging with.

Canon M6

Camera for vlogging: Canon M6

After talking about the 80D I am not too sure what else to say about the Canon M6. The Canon M6 has basically got the same sensor as the 80D. The one improvement it has over the 80D is that it has the newer Digic 7 image processors but it doesn’t make a massive difference.

When it comes to video, the M6 is pretty similar to the 80D. It might not perform exactly like the 80D which makes sense since the 80D is a higher end camera so there will be some features that are lacking. Having said that the M6 performs extremely well. It has great autofocus, it record video at 1080p at 60fps and it is small.

Like the 80D the M6 has all the required specifications. One unfortunate thing is that the M6 does not use EF or EF-S lenses so there are fewer lenses that you can choose from. Canon does offer an adapter so that you able to use EF and EF-S lenses but the autofocus might suffer with the adapter.

Conclusion: Canon M6

The M6 is a great all round camera. It has very similar specs to the 80D but it costs a significant amount less which for me puts it ahead of the 80D when it comes to vlogging. What I will say is that if you are going to start getting more into the video production and geeky side of video creation it would be best to get the 80D as it is a more robust camera overall.

Best camera for vlogging: Sony lineup

Sony A7S II

Camera for vlogging: Sony A7S II

I am going to start off with the Sony A7S II(Body only link). This camera is an absolutely incredible camera. To be fair it should not even be in this line up. Technically it is better than every other camera in the line up for almost everything.

The A7S II might only have 12 megapixels(half of the Canon cameras) but it makes up for that in terms of video quality and low light performance thanks to it having a full frame sensor. This camera can record stunning 4K video at up to 30fps and 1080p video at up to 120fps. Twice as many frames per second as the Canon cameras.

One of the benefits of a larger sensor is that they generally perform better in low light situations and like I mentioned before this is one of the A7S II’s most impressive features. It has an ISO range of 50-409600 which is massive in the camera world. There are some cameras that have higher ISO but they cost much more than the A7S II does. Having this ISO range means that this camera has no issues recording high quality video in low light situations which depending on the types of videos or vlogging you do, it could help tremendously.

The one issue that both the Sony’s have is that their flip screens are not great for vlogging. Their screens might be able to move but you cannot see them from the front of the camera which is very useful when vlogging.

Other than that, the A7S II comes with all the requirements and has 4K video recording as well as being a mirrorless camera. As I said before, this camera has a flip screen but it is not for vlogging, technically it still has a flip screen so I will keep it in this list.

One of the potential issues with going with this camera or the Sony A6500 is that Sony doesn’t have as many lenses as Canon. You can however get an adapter but the autofocus performance is really not good and sometimes it can stop autofocus completely.

Another thing that one needs to keep in mind is that this camera is not cheap by any means. It is more than twice the price of the Canon 80D and more than 3 times the price of the Canon M6. This is one amazing camera but you will need to have a decent audience to be able to justify purchasing a camera that costs that kind of money. Especially considering that is the body only price, you still need to buy a lens and lenses are not cheap.

Conclusion: Sony A7S II

It goes without saying that this camera is incredible and, like I said before it is the best camera in this line up by a long way. Even for photography this is a fantastic camera even though it only has 12 megapixels. You cannot go wrong buying this camera but do you really need to spend almost $2500 on a camera body for vlogging? I personally do not believe that that is needed.

Sony A6500

Camera for vlogging: Sony a6500

The a6500 is the replacement for the Sony a6300, which is still a great camera. One of the improvements that I like the most is that the a6500 now has in body image stabilization. This means that when you are buying lenses you do not need to buy lenses with image stabilization in order to get smooth video. This can help in the long run since IS(image stabilization) can increase lens prices quite a bit.

As usual with Sony the video quality is really quite good. One of the issues can be that it has rolling shutter when recording 4K. This is due to how much data needs to be processed when recording 4K video. It is not too much of an issue but you will notice it during fast movements.

One of the bad points with this camera, like the A7S II, is that the flip screen that it has does not move that much. When you use either of the Canon cameras on this list you will be able to see the screen while recording video. On the a6500 you will not be able to see the screen while you are recording which can be drawback.

The a6500 has an APSC sized sensor which is not a bad thing. It allows the camera to be a bit smaller. The problem with a smaller sensor is that the low light performance will not be as good as the A7S II, having said that the a6500 performs really well in low light situations. This camera also has very good dynamic range, in fact it has better dynamic range than the A7SII.

Like with the A7S II the a6500 can record 4K video at 30fps and 1080p video at up to 120fps. This is better than the Canon cameras and definitely a nice to have. Recording video at 120fps can add that extra unique selling point to your videos.

Conclusion: Sony a6500

Is this the best camera for vlogging? I am not too sure. I have nothing against this camera except for the screen that move enough. In terms of video it is a fantastic camera and I would highly recommend it, but before I do this is not a cheap camera. It costs about $300 more than the Canon 80D and almost twice the price of the Canon M6. As good as the a6500 is I do not believe that it justifies that extra price tag.

 

Over all thoughts about what would be the best camera for vlogging:

For me it is between the two Canon cameras. Both of them are great cameras in general and both do well with video, particularly the 80D.

If I was to go out and choose one of the cameras I would choose the Canon M6. Even though it has issues in terms of not using the EF or EF-S lenses I think that it comes in at a great price. With regards to the lenses that the M6 uses, the EF-M lenses tend to be less expensive so you could potentially get more than one lens.

Another reason for me choosing the M6 is the size of the camera. It is quite a lot smaller than the 80D is. It is also quite a bit lighter. The M6 weighs in at around 390g while the 80D comes in at around 730g. So the M6 is just over half the weight of the 80D. Keep in mind that the EF-M lenses are also smaller and lighter than the lenses the 80D would be using.

So for me, the M6 is the best camera for vlogging. It has all the required features, it is small and performs really well. At the end of the day, it basically has the same sensor as the 80D but not all the features.

If you are going to be using the camera everyday and going to be moving around a lot potentially doing things that could be tough on the camera then I would suggest going with the 80D. It is far more rugged and is used by some of the biggest vloggers in the world.

Videos:

Canon M6

This is a video from Casey Neistat, Canon vs Sony (he has bought 11 Canon 80d’s) –

 

If you want more information or are interested in looking at different vlogging cameras take a look at my vlogging camera buyers guide. If you are not sure what you should be looking for when buying a vlogging camera then you could take a look at my article where I talk about what to look for when buying a vlogging camera.

Best vlogging cameras with flip screen 2018

Flip screen cameras make vlogging much easier.

In this post I will go through some of the best flip screen vlogging cameras to help you pick what will best suit your needs and budget!

The reason why flip screen cameras make vlogging easier is because they allow you to see what is being recorded in real time. This allows you to see if your video is under or over exposed, whether you are in focus or not. It also makes sure that you are in the shot 🙂

 

Below I have created a list of vlogging cameras with a flip screen for different budgets.

 

Canon Powershot G7X Mark II

Flip screen: Canon Powershot G7X Mark 2

The original G7X Mark I was a great camera, vloggers loved it, it took great pictures and it done pretty much every really well. Even today the G7X Mark I is a good camera but in May of 2016 Canon released the G7X Mark II.

The G7X Mark II has improved on what was already a fantastic camera. The mark 2 has the same sensor and still only records video at 1080p 60 fps but it has the newer Digic 7 image processor which reduces noise and improves low light performance. It also improves autofocus in low light, this is great news for vloggers as autofocus is a very important when vlogging.

The battery life has been improved by around 25% which is great but another feature that has been added is the ability to charge the camera through the USB port. This was a feature that I was very excited about. Some cameras allow you to charge the camera while recording which enables you to plug a powerbank into the camera to give you much better battery life. Unfortunately the G7X Mark II does not do this. Hopefully if there is a mark 3 that will have the ability to charge and record video.

Another feature that is very popular these days with vloggers is including a time lapse segment in their videos. This can be quite annoying to do and get setup as you would need external tools to help with this. The G7X Mark II however comes with a time-lapse function built in which makes is really easy to record your time-lapse straight in the camera.

A small but in my opinion insignificant improvement, particularly when vlogging, is the fact that they improved the grip on the Mark II. This is a nice improvement but most of the time when you are vlogging you will not be holding the camera in a normal way, or you would be using a small tripod or gorilla pod to hold the camara with. If you are going to use the camera for photography, then this is a very nice addition.

Overall the G7X Mark II is one of the best vlogging cameras with a flip screen, whether you are a beginner or professional. It does everything that one needs and does them well. It is a pity that it does not have 4K video, something which Canon is lagging behind with, but most people do not have 4K monitors or TV’s yet, there is more to 4K than just monitors or tv’s being able to display it, but I do not think that it has a major impact when vlogging.

Key features:

  • Record video at1080p 60fps
  • Flip screen
  • 1 inch sensor
  • Digic 7 processor

 

Sony RX100 Mark V

Flip screen: Sony Cyber-shot RX100 IV

At $848 the Sony RX100 Mark V is not a cheap camera. It is $200 more than the G7X Mark II and doesn’t have a touch screen. However the RX100 has quite a few redeeming features that in my opinion justify the 30% price difference.

One of the main differences is the fact that the RX100 can record video at 4K. Previously I said that 4K doesn’t really matter for vlogging and I stand by that. However there is no denying that 4K is the future and being able to record video at 4K now allows those videos to stand the test of time in terms of resolution. Once of the major advantages of 4K is the ability to be able to downscale and improve your videos sharpness or have the ability to crop the video without losing as much quality if you apply the same crop to a 1080p video.

One different feature is the ability to shoot slow mo video. Doing so you will need to lower your resolution but the camera can record video up to 960 fps. This can help your vlog in a similar way that a time-lapse can add that extra quality to a video.

General thoughts on the RX100 Mark V is very good. It is compact and does a fantastic job, it is a pity that screen is not touchscreen but some of the features make up for that. There is no question why the RX100 Mark V is popular with vloggers. It records great video and is also good for taking pictures.

Key features:

  • Record video at 4K
  • Flip screen
  • 1 inch sensor
  • Slow motion video

 

Canon M3

Flip screen: Canon M3

The only camera with an APSC sized sensor on this list. The M3 has a very similar sensor to one of Canon’s more prosumer camera’s, the Canon 80D. The 80D is a great video camera and the M3 is not too bad itself. Allowing you to record 1080p video at up to 60fps.

Having interchangeable lenses is a benefit. It might shock you at first that you can buy a camera that cannot do anything until you buy a lens but that is what also allows a lot of flexibility and can greatly improve your vlogs quality. Interchangeable lenses allow you to have greater control over the camera with things like focal length and aperture. This allows for more creativity and will add longevity to the camera itself.

Unfortunately, like most other non professional Canon cameras right now, the M3 does not come with 4K video recording. It does do a good job with 1080p recording and can record at 60 fps. The M3 also comes with an external mic jack as well as a hot shoe that allows you to mount the external mic to the camera for easy hands free operation.

Key features:

  • Record video at 1080p 60fps
  • External mic jack
  • Hot shoe to mount external mic
  • APSC sensor
  • Flip screen

Panasonic Lumix G7

Flip screen: Panasonic Lumix G7

Panasonic makes some great cameras. The Lumix G7 is no exception. It is bigger than the Sony RX100 Mark V or the Canon G7X Mark II but it is not a big camera.

The G7 has a lot to offer. It records video at 4K 30fps, it is small and light, it has a Micro Four Thirds size sensor, so it has a bigger sensor than the Canon G7X Mark II and the Sony RX100 Mark V which generally means better handling of noise and better low light performance but at the same time it will generally perform a little worse than an APSC in term of low light performance and handling noise. Most of the time no one will really notice and a lot of the time one will be filming in the day time.

Another great benefit with the G7 is that it has interchangeable lenses. This is quite big step up from some of the other cameras on the list. Interchangeable lenses allows you to upgrade lenses, or get lenses that perform better in low light or have a longer focal length. It allows you to be more creative too since you are not confined to a single lens, so if you like the blurred background look you would be able find a prime lens that has a wide aperture that can allow you to get the look you want.

The G7 also comes with external mic jack as well as a hot shoe that will allow you to mount an external mic to let you get more professional audio quality. External mics have other advantages depending on the type of mic that you get.

Key Features:

  • Record video at 4K
  • Flip screen
  • External mic jack
  • Hot shoe to mount external mic
  • M43(Micro Four Thirds)
  • Flip out screen

Conclusion:

These are some of the best vlogging cameras with a flip screen and compact size. Most of them are small but the RX100 and the G7X Mark 2 are the smallest, they also do not have interchangeable lenses or external mics. Which can be a con but it all depends on what you need. Often the internal camera can do a decent enough job.

When buying any of these cameras remember to budget for an external mic, the Canon M3 and the Panasonic Lumix G7 both allow for external mics. If you go for one of the other cameras you can still get an external mic, but it would need to be hand held.

Be sure to check out my vlogging camera buyers guide where I talk about other vlogging cameras that could suit your needs.

Vlogging camera buyers guide

In this buyers guide we will show you some of the best vlogging camera’s. We will go through their features and what makes them great for vlogging.

Vlogging camera line up:

Canon Powershot s120

Vlogging Camera: Canon Powershot s120

The Canon Powershot s120 is a great little camera. It only has 12.1 megapixels but it shoots video at 1080p at up to 60fps(frames per second). It also has a Digic 6 processor to help improve image quality and improved high iso quality.

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Pros:

  • 1080p 60 fps video
  • Digic 6 processor
  • f1.8 lens at 24mm(full frame equivalent)
  • Optical image stabilization
  • 3.0 inch touch screen
  • Good low light performance
  • Time lapse built in
  • Great size

Cons:

  • No flip screen
  • No 4k video recording
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Panasonic Lumix ZS70

Vlogging Camera: Panasonic Lumix ZS70

The ZS70 is smaller than the LX10. It has a smaller sensor more typical of a compact camera but it can still record 4K video with a 180° flip up screen.

This is a small camera with big features, one of those features is the fact that it has 30x zoom functionality which could be useful but it wont be used too often when vlogging. Luckily the camera has a 5 axis hybrid optical image stabilizer.

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Pros:

  • 4K video recording
  • 5 Axis Hybrid Optical Image stabilizer
  • 180° 3 inch Flip up touch screen
  • 30x zoom
  • Video autofocus

Cons:

  • No interchangeable lenses
  • Poor native ISO, up to 3200
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Canon M3 & M6

Vlogging Camera: Canon M6

*Canon M6 pictured

These are extremely compact little camera’s. They have interchangeable lenses which is great, but they use EF-M lenses instead of EF and EF-S. You can get adapters but the lenses might not always work the same with the adapter.

EF-M lenses are good lenses. They are built specifically for Canon’s mirrorless cameras.

The Canon M3(Body Only) and the Canon M6(Body Only) both allow for external mics and both have hot shoes so that you can mount the mic above the camera.

Both of these cameras have APSC size sensors. They have similar sensors to the other canon APSC sensor Canon DLSR’s on this list.

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*The pros and cons apply to both of these cameras

Pros:

  • 180° Flip up 3 inch touch screen
  • 1080p up to 30fps (M6 – 1080p up to 60fps)
  • Good native ISO up to 25600
  • Continuous autofocus during video
  • Small and light

Cons:

  • EF-M natively, otherwise you need an adapter for EF or EF-S lenses
  • No 4K video

BUY Canon M3 ON AMAZON BUY Canon M6 ON AMAZON

 

Panasonic Lumix GX850

Vlogging Camera: Panasonic Lumix GX850

The GX850 is bigger than the LX10. It comes with a Micro Four Thirds sensor. Unfortunately the GX850 does not have external mic input nor does it have a hot shoe. However, it can record 4K video and it has 180° flip screen.

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Pros:

  • 4K video
  • M43(Micro Four Thirds) sensor
  • Video autofocus
  • Good native ISO up to 25600
  • Light weight

Cons:

  • No external mic
  • No interchangeable lenses
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Panasonic Lumix G7

Vlogging Camera: Panasonic Lumix G7

The G7 is bigger than the previous two Panasonic cameras. It has a M43 sensor similar to the GX850 however the G7 has interchangeable lenses. The G7 can record 4K video at up to 30fps and 1080p video at up to 60fps.

The G7 allows for external mic input and a hot shoe to mount in on to.

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Pros:

  • 4K at up to 30fps and 1080p at up to 60fps video recording
  • Video autofocus
  • Interchangeable lenses
  • M43(Micro Four Thirds) sensor
  • Good native ISO, up to 25600
  • Light weight and compact for interchangeable lens camera
  • Tilt screen to help framing up when recording video

Cons:

  • Bigger and more expensive than the GX850.
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Panasonic Lumix LX10

Vlogging Camera: Panasonic Lumix LX10

This is a compact camera. It has a built in lens so you cannot change it later if you want to try different things. That being said, this is a fantastic little camera.

It has a 1 inch sensor which is good for a compact camera. It can shoot 4K video at up to 30fps and 1080p video at up to 120fps. The LX10 has a 180° flip up screen to allow you to easily frame your shot as well as control the camera settings.

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Pros:

  • 4K video at up to 30fps and 1080p video at up to 120fps
  • Good native ISO, up to 12800
  • Video autofocus
  • 1 inch sensor
  • Lens aperture: F1.4-F2.8
  • Image stabilization
  • Light weight

Cons:

  • No external mic.
  • No interchangeable lenses
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Canon Powershot G7X Mark 2

Vlogging Camera: Canon Powershot G7X Mark 2

The Canon G7X mark 2 is a very popular vlogging camera. It is used by quite a few YouTubers. The G7X is small and compact camera that can shoot at 1080p 60fps video recording. It also has a flip screen so that you can see what you are vlogging as well as easily change settings.

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Pros:

  • 1080p 60fps video
  • 1.0 inch sensor
  • Digic 7 processor to boost image quality in low light
  • Optical image stabilization
  • 3.0 inch touch screen that can flip 180 degrees
  • F1.8-2.8 lens. Great for low light situations
  • Autofocus during video

Cons:

  • Average battery life
  • No 4k video recording
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Canon SL2/200d

Vlogging Camera: Canon SL2/200D

The Canon SL2/200D(Body only link) is the first DSLR camera on the list. The SL2/200D is one of Canons entry level DLSR cameras. It has 24.2 megapixel APSC sensor. A similar sensor is found in the higher end 80D camera. This is a great beginner DSLR vlogging camera.

When you start getting into the DSLR’s you will find useful features like external mic input, longer lasting batteries, better autofocus speeds and the ability to change lenses and get better ones.

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Pros:

  • APSC sized sensor
  • Dual pixel Autofocus system for fast autofocus
  • Vari-angle 3.0 inch touch screen
  • External mic input
  • Hot shoe to fit external light source or external mic
  • Digic 7 Image processor
  • Small and light weight for a DLSR
  • Comes with a decent kit lens to get started with
  • Continuous autofocus while recording video
  • Interchangeable lenses
  • Good ISO range, native ISO up to 25600

Cons:

  • Can be more confusing than the smaller cameras
  • While being small and light for a DLSR, it is much larger than a compact camera
  • No 4k video recording
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Canon G5X

Vlogging Camera: Canon G5X

The Canon G5X is good compact camera. It has decent ISO performance and a nice 1.0 inch sensor. It can take 1080p video at up to 60fps. It has a vari-angle 3.0 inch touch screen which helps when you are recording but also makes it easier to control camera settings if you need to.

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Pros

  • 1080p at up to 60fps
  • 3.0 inch vari-angle touch screen
  • Compact size
  • Hot shoe if you want to add a portable continuous light
  • Image stabilization
  • f1.8-f2.8 aperture
  • Good ISO range, native ISO up to 12800

Cons

  • No mic jack.
  • No 4k video recording
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Sony Cyber-shot RX100 V

Vlogging Camera: Sony Cyber-shot RX100 IV

The Sony Cyber-shot RX100 IV is a highly praised camera, and is used by a few vloggers on Youtube. It is small and compact, record at 4k and has a 1 inch sensor. It can also record video at up to 960fps but at a lower resolution.

The RX100 IV is a great choice as your main or backup vlogging camera.

You could also look at the Sony RX100 V. This is the latest model but it is about $150 more expensive at the time of writing this.

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Pros:

  • 4K video recording
  • 1 inch sensor
  • f1.8-f2.8 aperture
  • Good video autofocus
  • Flip screen to be able to monitor what the camera is recording
  • Small
  • Not too expensive

Cons:

  • Rolling shutter at 4K
  • No touch screen
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Canon 77D

Vlogging Camera: Canon 77D

The Canon 77D(Body only link) is quite a step up from the Canon SL2/200d(Body only link). They have the same sensor but the 77D has more features and it is a bigger camera. This camera is the highest end “beginner” APSC camera that Canon makes. It can take 1080p video at up to 60fps, it also has a vari-angle screen.

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Pros:

  • 1080p video at up to 60fps
  • Digic 7 image processor
  • External mic
  • HDR movie and Time-lapse movie modes
  • APSC sized sensor
  • Dual pixel Autofocus system for fast autofocus
  • Hot shoe to fit external light source or external mic
  • Interchangeable lenses
  • Autofocus during video
  • Great price with starter kit
  • Good ISO range, native ISO up to 25600

Cons:

  • Bigger than something like the Canon SL2/200d
  • No 4k video recording
  • Not too much benefit over the Canon SL2/200d for video
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Canon 80D

Vlogging Camera: Canon 80D

The Canon 80D(Body Only link) is a fantastic video camera. The 80d was sort of made for videos in some ways and it is a popular camera amongst Youtuber’s. It has a better focussing system than the other Canon DSLR’s. It has a similar sensor to the others but only a Digic 6 image processor.

No matter the older processor, this is best Canon camera out of all the ones that I have listed here. For video and photography. It is more robust and can take a bit of a beating. It also has a bigger battery so it will last longer when out and about.

Check out this DigitalRev review on the 80D.

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Pros:

  • Canons best APSC camera for video
  • Great autofocus system for video
  • Good ISO. Native ISO up to 16000
  • 1080p video at up to 60fps
  • Good build quality

Cons:

  • No 4k video recording
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Sony a6500

Vlogging Camera: Sony a6500

The Sony a6500(Body only link) is another great vlogging camera. It is a small compact mirrorless camera with an APSC sized sensor. It has good dynamic range and ISO capabilities.

The best thing about this camera is how it brings DSLR features to a camera of this size. It might be more expensive that the previous two Canon cameras but the a6500 can record video at 4k. It also has 5-axis in body image stabilization.

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Pros:

  • Very small camera for the features
  • 4k video recording
  • 1080p video at up to 120fps
  • APSC size sensor
  • Good ISO capability. Native ISO up to 25600
  • Interchangeable lenses

Cons:

  • Tilt screen does not tilt enough to be able to see what you are recording
  • Price might be a bit too steep, especially since this price is for the body only
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Panasonic GH5

Vlogging Camera: Panasonic Lumix GH5

The Panasonic Lumix GH5(Body only link) is a fantastic camera for video. This is one of those cameras that has a sort of cult following when it comes to video recording and with good reason. It shoots great 4k video at up to 60fps and 1080p at up to 180fps. It also has in body 5-axis image stabilization which is great because lenses with image stabilization can be more expensive. Up to 5 stops of image stabilization with compatible Lumix MFT(Micro four thirds) lenses.

The GH5 is also built tough and able to handle a few knocks and bumps with its magnesium alloy body.

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Pros:

  • Fantastic 4k video at up to 60fps or 1080p video at up to 180fps
  • Magnesium alloy body
  • 5-axis in body image stabilization
  • Up to 5 stops of image stabilization when using compatible lenses
  • Interchangeable lens
  • Vari-angle 3.2 inch touch screen
  • 4:2:2 10bit video
  • No low pass filter for shaper images and video
  • External mic
  • Headphone port
  • Hotshoe
  • Dual card slots allowing you to shoot more video
  • Good ISO. Native ISO up to 12800

Cons:

  • Quite expensive, but it does come with some professional grade features
  • Only has a micro four third size sensor
  • First party lenses can be expensive
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Sony A7R II

Vlogging Camera: Sony A7R II

There is no other way to put this but the Sony A7R II(Body only link) is the best camera, the best vlogging camera, the best photography camera. However it is not cheap. At $2700 you would expect it to have amazing features, and it does. 42.4 megapixels, full frame, 4k video, 5-axis in body image stabilization and the list goes on.

This camera is incredible and to be fair is quite overkill for a vlogging camera.

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Pros:

  • Full Frame
  • 4k video recording
  • Great ISO. Native up to 25600 while recording video
  • Good autofocus while recording video
  • 5-axis in body image stabilization
  • Touch magnesium alloy body
  • External mic

Cons:

  • Tilt screen does not tilt far enough to see what you are doing
  • Expensive
  • Overkill to use as a vlogging camera. If you are into photography too, then it is not really overkill.
BUY ON AMAZON

 

Conclusion:

These days cameras are generally quite good and to find a good vlogging camera is not that difficult. There are some things to keep in mind that can make some cameras perform better as a vlogging camera than other cameras. One of the features that help with this is a screen that flips out and is viewable when the camera is facing you. Another feature that is good to look for is an external mic. External mics can really up your audio quality which can make a big difference to the overall quality of your vlogs.

 

If you decide on a camera that has interchangeable lenses, you should take a look at my post detailing what you should look for when choosing a vlogging lens.

Vlogging lens: What you should look for when choosing one

In this post I will be talking about what you should look for when you are trying to find your perfect vlogging lens.

Sensor Size

Before we start, I just want to talk about camera sensor size. This can be a pain point when learning about cameras in general and before we carry on you need to know that different sensor sizes might affect the type of lens that you want to be looking at.

There are two main sensor types that I want to talk about. One of them is the Full Frame sensor and the other is the APSC(known as a crop sensor) sized sensor. When you look at lenses you will see that each lens has a focal length, or a focal length range. So you could find a lens that says it is a 50mm lens, or a lens that says it is a 10-18mm lens. These numbers represent the focal length of the lens, the smaller the number the wider the lens is, the higher the number the more “zoom” the lens has.

This is where the problems of picking a lens starts. Those focal lengths are all based on Full Frame sensor sizes, which is great if you have a Full Frame camera. If you do not have a Full Frame camera and you have a APSC size sensor then you need to do some calculations. When it comes to APSC sensors you will generally multiply the focal length of the lens by 1.5 or 1.6 depending on the brand of camera that you are using. For e.g. if you have a 50mm lens and you use that on a camera that has an APSC sized sensor then your equivalent focal length will actually be around 75mm(1.5x) to 80mm(1.6x). This is not an issue but you need to pay attention to this. Buying the wrong lens is an expensive mistake.

Vlogging lens: full frame vs crop sensor size

Lens types

Prime

A prime lens is a lens that has a fixed focal length, meaning that you cannot zoom in or out. When I use the word “zoom” I do not mean see further away, I just mean you cannot change the lenses focal length.

These lenses generally allow for wider apertures which let in more light and will help if you are vlogging in darker areas.

Example of a prime lens:

Vlogging lens: EF 35mm f1.4L II USM FRA
Canon 35mm L lens

Zoom

A zoom lens is a lens that allows you to change the focal length by zooming in or out. Generally if you buy a DLSR kit, you will get a kit lens with it. This kit lens might have a focal length of 18-55mm.

The drawback of zoom lenses is that they generally have smaller apertures and their apertures are not fixed/constant.

Example of zoom lens:

Vlogging lens: EF 16-35mm f2.8L III USM FSL

I discuss apertures in the apertures section below. 

Focal length

When looking at lenses you will see a number with “mm” next to it. That number is the focal length. Like I said before a small number means the lens is wider which will get more of the scene in the shot or video and the higher the number is the more it becomes a telephoto lens, meaning it will allow you to see things that are far away.

Generally when Vlogging you want a wider angle zoom lens. When I say “zoom” in this context I mean the ability to change the lenses focal length. It is always useful to be able change the focal length while vlogging. When you are vlogging normally you might want to have the lens at its widest possible focal length and then when you want to have more emphasis, you can zoom in. In general it is better to use a wide angle zoom lens.

Having said that you might still want to look at prime lenses, or fixed focal length lenses. These are generally sharper in terms of image quality and usually have wider apertures, which produces a shallower depth of field and can help separate you from the background. They can also allow you to have better “bokeh”.

Having said all of this, I would suggest going with a wide angle zoom lens for your first vlogging lens. Something along the lines of a 10-18mm lens.

Aperture

When picking a vlogging lens one needs to consider aperture but it is not as important as it would be in photography.

The aperture of a lens is basically controls how much light the lens lets in. The wider the aperture the more light it will let in which can help when you are vlogging in doors or in a dark area.

Aperture also controls depth of field. Depth of field is basically how narrow your focus area is. The wider your aperture is, the narrower the focus area is. If this is used well it can be great and can add an extra dimension to your vlog. However it also makes focusing more difficult.

A vlogging lens generally doesn’t need a wide aperture. When looking for a lens make sure that it has an aperture within the range of 3.5 – 5.6. What this means is that when your lens is at its widest zoom the widest aperture of the lens will be 3.5 and when you are fully zoomed in then the widest aperture will be 5.6.

Dont let these numbers scare you. When you are looking for a vlogging lens, most of the lenses will be in this range.

Aperture chart to help visualize how aperture or f-stop value changes the aperture of a lens.

Vlogging lens: Aperture chart

Image stabilization

This is a very short but very important point when picking a lens to vlog with. Make sure that it has IS(image stabilization). When you are vlogging you will be moving around a lot and shaky video is not enjoyable to watch.

Image stabilization will help smooth out the video while you are recording it, making editing the videos easier.

Autofocus

This is another very important feature to look for when picking out a lens. Most lenses have autofocus for photography.

This does not mean that the autofocus will work in video. This is not only a lens issue. Your camera might not support autofocus during video mode with some lenses. So when picking up a lens, make sure that your camera will be able to use the lenses autofocus feature while recording video.

Desired vlogging lens specs:

  • Wide angle zoom lens. Something between 10-18mm(APSC sized sensor) or 16-35mm(Full Frame).
  • Aperture within the range of 3.5-5.6.
  • If you are holding the camera a lot then getting a lighter lens will be beneficial.
  • Image stabilization is a must.
  • Autofocus. This will depend on the camera and lens.

 

Conclusion:

Lenses are great and all but they are meaningless without a camera attached to them. If you need help finding the best camera, check out my vlogging camera buyers guide post.

What to look for in a vlogging camera

What to look for when buying a vlogging camera

Before getting into this topic, you need to understand that you need a vlogging camera that suits what you want to do. It is perfectly acceptable to just use to your phone. These days smart phones have good cameras and their mic’s are decent too. I personally think that this is the best way to start vlogging. That way you can see if you enjoy it or not before you spend money on equipment that will never be used.

Image Quality

Resolution

Resolution is not as important as one thinks but it should still be decent. Even though 4K video is becoming popular vlogging at 1080p (Full HD) is still more than good enough, especially if you are getting started. You might even get by with a camera that does 720p video but I would not recommend doing that.

Low light performance

Low light performance generally refers to ISO. ISO is a setting to make a camera more sensitive to light, in other words, the higher the ISO is the more light your camera will capture. One down side with high ISO is an increase in noise and grain. Noise and grain will reduce image quality, and depending on high you push the ISO it can dramatically reduce the image quality.

This is another setting that might depend on the type of vlog that you want to make. If you are going to have full control over your lighting then this is not too much of an issue since you will have enough light to be able to use a lower ISO. If you are going to be walking around then you will generally have little to no control over your lighting. Depending on the settings of you camera, you might find that it will increase the ISO when you go into an area with low light. So it is just something that you need to watch out for, and if you know that you are going to be doing vlogs where you are moving to very different lighting situations then you would be better off with something that can handle higher ISO.

Lens selection

Lens selection will depend on camera and on brand. If you go for a compact camera it will only be able to use the lens that comes with the camera. If you go with something like a mirrorless or DSLR camera then you will be able to choose from many lenses, again the amount of lenses depends on camera brand and type of camera.

DSLR and mirrorless cameras will allow you to use interchangeable lenses. This means that you can change the lens on your camera. This also allows you to buy lenses that suits your vlogging style and gives you more control by giving you constant aperture, depending on lens, or being able to give you an ultra wide focal length.

For more info about lenses, I have done another post with more in depth information about lenses and what to look for.

Video autofocus

When looking for a good vlogging camera make sure that is has autofocus for video. This feature is a deal breaker. If it does not have autofocus look else where.

Trying to vlog and manually focus is a complete and utter nightmare. It can also waste a lot of time. If you have filmed most of your day and then when you get in to edit all the clips that you have shot only to find that they are out of focus and unusable is really not something that you want to experience.

Mic

Strangely enough, sound quality on videos is more important than video quality. For e.g. people would much prefer watching a video at 720p with good sound quality than watching a 1080p video with poor sound quality. Sound quality can make or break a video, which can hurt your vlogging channel. Unfortunately sound equipment can be expensive but there are also cheap alternatives that can give good sound quality while being inexpensive.

Just like cameras and lenses, there are different types of microphones. Depending on the style of vlog you want to make, you might need a different type of mic. 

Flip out screen

A vlogging camera needs a flip out screen otherwise it will be near impossible to vlog. Flip out screens will help you view the camera screen while you are recording you vlog. This allows you to get your focussing and exposure correct. It will also allow you to monitor your audio levels, if the camera has that ability.

Vlogging Camera: EOS 77D BCK LCD
Canon 77D

Tripod/Handle

When vlogging you will need to put you camera on something when you are holding it, or when you are just sitting and talking to the camera. A tripod or a handle will help depending on the type of vlog you are making.

If you are going to be making vlogs while walking around or going about your day to day tasks then you should probably get a handle. A handle will make easier to hold the camera further away.  Having this kind of control can help you create different effects or looks to your video. Being able to hold your camera out further with a wide angle lens can help you to get more of the environment in the shot. At the same time, being able to hold a camera further away will allow you to use a longer focal length that could have less distortion or could help give you a tighter and more close up shot.

If you are going to be shooting a lot of your vlogs at home, or somewhere where you will be sitting down a lot, then a tripod can be a huge help. You could use a table or something along those lines but a tripod will give you far more control. You can raise or lower a tripod by adjusting the height of the legs, or you can tilt the camera up and down or left and right. This provides a lot of flexibility while filming.

Vlogging camera: gorilla pod

Size

This is another point that depends on the type of vlog you are or will be making. If you vlog from a desk or in your lounge while seated then going for a bigger heavier camera is not a problem. However, if you plan on walking around a lot make sure that you think about the size and weight of the camera, lens and all the other accessories.

Some bigger DSLR cameras like the Canon 7D mark ii can weigh up to 2lb(910g) and that is without a lens. A lens could weigh up to or more than a than the camera depending on the lens.

So getting a lighter setup can improve your vlogging experience. Carrying heavy gear around can potentially stop one from doing something because of how uncomfortable it might be, or it might just tire you out faster.

Budget

This is probably the most important point just because it puts a limit on to what you can buy. When buying a vlogging camera don’t always go for the cheapest setup that you can find. If you are wanting to do that then I would suggest that you use you smartphone instead.

Smartphones have decent cameras as well as decent mic’s and getting started like this is probably the easiest and cheapest way to start vlogging.

When looking for the perfect vlogging camera, look at cameras out of your price bracket and see what video features that they have, do some research about those features and then try and find a more affordable camera that has as many of those features as possible.

If you are going to go with a mirrorless or DLSR camera, remember that do not always come with a lens. When you are looking at these cameras make sure that they don’t say  it is body only.

Desired vlogging camera specs:

  • Lightweight, depending on your vlogging style
  • Video autofocus
  • Good ISO performance
  • Flip out screen

Examples of good vlogging cameras:

Canon G7X:

Vlogging Camera: Canon G7X

Canon 200d:

Vlogging Camera: Canon 200d

Sony A7R II(Body only link):

Vlogging Camera: Sony A7R II

Check out my Ultimate guide to buying a vlogging camera