If you are a vlogger, YouTuber, or any other type of content creator that works on a budget, we have a real treat for you today since we are going to talk about the best cheap cameras for YouTube you can find in today’s market.
Although it is not an easy endeavor, it is possible to find a suitable camera with a lower price tag, but it is necessary to know the important features and specs that will make you worthwhile. We understand that this can be very challenging, so we did a bit of research so you will not have to. You will find some very interesting choices in today’s article, as well as a comprehensive buying guide that will point you toward the ideal pick that will serve your purposes best. We have a lot to cover, so let us begin.
List of the Best Budget Vlogging Cameras for YouTube
1. Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II Compact Digital Camera
This entry-level camera is super compact, convenient, and affordable. It comes from a renowned Canon brand and sports a better-than-average 1-inch-type CMOS sensor. The fact that this is an entry-level unit means that there are some interesting user-friendly features that ensure that even some inexperienced users can find their way with the interface.
The interface is touch-screen based, so any smartphone user will find some familiar commands and features to work with. As far as the body of the camera goes, it is rather compact and small, but its size does not compromise on performance and image quality which is a great piece of news.
With dimensions standing at 98 x 57.9 x 31.3 mm and weighing only 206 grams, this camera is compact as pretty much any camera can get. It is also quite thin and feels very comfortable in the photographer’s hand.
Despite its small size, this camera packs a 1-inch size sensor, with 4x the surface area of a ½.3-inch sensor you can usually find in common compact cameras and phones. Given the fact that the surface area is increased, the sensors are a bit more light-sensitive, meaning that they will grant you less image grain, especially when you work in conditions with less light.
It is a unit that sports Canon’s last-generation Digic 7 image processor, which is very powerful and can provide raw image capture at an 8.2 fps continuous shooting rate. Although this unit cannot facilitate 4K video recording, you will get fantastic 1080p Full HD video.
Small, compact, and cheap, PowerShot G9 X Mark II is a fantastic entry-level camera that will suit anyone who has budget limitations but requires a solid and well-performing camera for vlogging purposes. It is a user-friendly unit that is easy to use and get used to, making it a great consideration.
2. Sony a5100 16-50mm Interchangeable Lens Camera
Sony Alpha a5100 is another camera that offers a compact size and low price tag. It is a very impressive unit that boasts a 24.3 MP APS-C CMOS sensor and runs on a very fast BIONZ X image processor. All of this is packed in a lightweight and compact body, making it very accessible and easy to use for both beginners and pros.
The size of this camera is so small that it can almost fit in your pocket, so you will be able to carry it around wherever you want. This is particularly convenient for users that create YouTube content while on the move or in the great outdoors, where it is essential to save some extra storage space.
Do not let the fact that this is a rather light unit discourage you from buying it, as its build quality is very solid. Although the body of this camera is not water-sealed, it is understandable since most cameras in this price range do not offer such a feature.
Although Sony is often criticized for their menus, we found this model’s menu pretty easy to navigate and use. You will get a grasp on wheel controls pretty fast, as well as shooting modes, ISO settings, and similar functions you get. Moreover, you can customize the menu settings according to your preferences, but leaving it as it is can also be a good option to hold on to.
This camera features a 3-inch LCD display, which you can use to focus and fine-tune your photos, and also to navigate the menu easier. Images are also very good, and you get more than satisfying results at this price point. Photos from all three lenses are very sharp, so you might find it troublesome to figure out which lens was which when judging the images alone.
Although this is a rather small unit, it sports some fantastic specifications and offers a set of features you would likely expect to get from a more expensive camera. You get fantastic images out of it, and due to its compact size, it is incredibly easy to carry it around pretty much anywhere.
3. Canon EOS Rebel T7 DSLR Camera
EOS Rebel T7 DSLR camera is a perfect option to go for if you want to get a better image and video quality and get more control. It is a camera with a 24-megapixel sensor and some interesting performance improvements when compared to its predecessor, T6.
Depending on the shop you are purchasing it from, this camera is generally available for around 500 USD, which is a nice bargain considering everything that you get for it. You will get excellent image quality, ease of use, and compact size, all wrapped in one little package that will serve you for a long time.
This is one of the smaller DSLRs you can find in today’s market, and same as our previous two picks, it is very compact and a great option to carry with you wherever you go. It weighs 475 grams, so it is a bit heavier than the previous two, but it is still pretty light and portable.
EOS Rebel has been a series favorable by users that require affordable but capable DSLR for a very long time. It delivers outstanding image quality, and when you consider the price point it comes with, it is a very pleasant surprise. Under well-lit conditions, this camera delivers exceptional results.
The colors are also very bright and well-saturated, even when you use Auto and Standard picture styles, which is a great piece of news for less-experienced users. The camera captures details faithfully, and you get very nice additional options for photo taking, such as neutral, sharpness, contrast, saturation, etc.
This budget-friendly unit will grant you exceptional and consistent performance, especially in well-lit surroundings. Most of the photos you take with this camera will require minimum editing, and the video quality is also on point and well-suited for YouTubers and other content creators.
Although you will not get 4K video recording capabilities, you will still be able to capture the videos in Full HD 1920 x 1080 clips at 30 FPS. It is an excellent camera from a well-known manufacturer and a product worthy of your attention.
4. Fujifilm X-S10 Mirrorless Camera
When we talk about mid-range mirrorless cameras, we absolutely must mention the Fujifilm X-S10 mirrorless camera. It has fantastic in-body image stabilization, and it is by far one of the best cameras for vloggers, YouTubers, and other content creators that want to capture quality videos without breaking the bank.
As far as the design of the X-S10 goes, it is an interesting blend of vintage and modern wrapped in one neat little package. It has a nice and deep grip, and it is pretty light, so you can almost fit it inside your pocket. The camera also sports a magnesium alloy build that ensures you get that premium feel.
Granted, this is the most expensive entry on our list, but it is within the limits of reason, especially due to the fact you are getting some amazing features. Controls are relatively easy to use, but they are not a complete ergonomic success, as the power button may be a bit slippery.
This is by far one of the best small mid-range cameras you can find out there. It is jam-packed with excellent features that ensure quality image and video capturing, and its amazing capabilities ensure that every dollar you invest in it will be very much worth it. This is not a flawless camera, but it is certainly one of the best in the market at this price point.
5. Sony RX100 20.2 MP Premium Compact Digital Camera
RX100 is a fantastic budget choice that you can get under 400 dollars in most stores. It is a pocket-size camera that sports a 1-inch sensor, and it is super light and compact so that you can carry it with you whenever you want to take your vlogging away from the comforts of your household.
Generally speaking, this is a camera that is fairly easy to use, but users with larger hands might experience some issues while doing it. However, if you are able to pass this, you will find that this is a feature-rich camera with some amazing capabilities that are well above its price range.
Right from the get-go, you will notice that Sony was concentrated on providing photography enthusiasts with everything they need, and all of that with a lower price tag. It is a beautifully designed unit but lacks environmental sealings, meaning that you will have to be careful and protect it from water and dust.
It features 20 megapixels, and you can shoot photos at 5472 x 3648 resolution, which is very impressive. Although this camera lacks modern features such as a tilting touch screen, 4K video, and Wi-Fi, it still has a lot of interesting capabilities to the table that every photography and video enthusiast will appreciate.
On the other hand, it does come with an NFC feature that allows this camera to communicate with other devices, such as smartphones or any other piece of technology that has this feature. It is a great budget pick up, and any vlogger and YouTuber that does not require some spectacular video quality should consider it.
With video recording options including 1920 x 1080 Full HD on 50 FPS in AVCHD format, this camera is more than suitable for YouTube videos and other similar needs. It offers excellent image quality in both illuminated and dark conditions. RX100 is by far the cheapest option on our list, but it is designed to serve various purposes, making it a great pickup for everyone that works on a budget.
Things to Consider When Buying a Cheap Camera for YouTube
Working on a budget does not mean you cannot get a good camera. You likely will not be able to afford some premium features, but you will certainly be able to get something that can suit your needs and deliver excellent videos. In the section below, we have listed some important things to keep in mind when buying a cheap camera.
Video Quality and Resolution
It goes without saying that the video quality your camera delivers is essential for YouTube content creators. Although it is unlikely that you will be able to find a camera that can capture 4K videos when working on the budget, you should not settle for anything less than Full HD.
Stabilization is a very important thing to consider when buying a camera for YouTube filming, especially if you are not working in a studio setting. When working on the budget, look for cameras that offer IBIS (in-body image stabilization). It will help you stabilize the video and get smooth, shake-free recordings.
Autofocus is supposed to be one of the biggest priorities, especially if you are self-shooting for YouTube. With a suitable autofocus feature, you will get nice videos and will be able to capture exactly what you planned to, and all of that in the highest quality available.
Battery life is another important consideration when buying a cheap camera. It is especially important if you are recording videos away from a household or in a space that has no electric outlets for recharging the battery. However, if you are always filming from the comforts of your home, this is not something that should be a deal-maker or breaker.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What features are most important in cameras for YouTube?
When shooting videos for YouTube or vlogs, it is important to have decent video quality resolution and autofocus. It is also essential to have a camera with good built-in stabilization so that the videos you are filming do not get shaky or blurry when moving.
2. Do I require an external microphone for filming YouTube videos?
Although some cheap cameras do come with built-in microphones, they are usually very poor quality-wise, so it would be wise to consider purchasing an external mic. A solid external microphone will provide you with clear audio, which is necessary for YouTubers, as everything they are saying while being recorded will be much more understandable.
3. Do cheap vlogging cameras allow you to live stream?
Some models do, but it is a rare feature in budget cameras. You will likely require some additional hardware and software solutions, such as Lightstream or Wirecast, to make this happen.
4. Are cheap entry-level cameras sufficient for YouTube videos and vlogging?
Yes, you can find more than decent entry-level cameras for vlogging that possess features necessary for this use. However, these cameras will only get you so far, and when you decide to upgrade, consider purchasing mid-range cameras such as Sony ZV-1, Canon EOS 90D, or something similar.
5. What camera is good for skits and short videos?
It would be best to go for some type of DSLR, but this is something that entirely depends on your budget. From the cameras we have listed in this guide, it would be wisest to opt for Canon EOS Rebel T7 DSLR.
This concludes our guide for the best budget cameras for YouTube. As you can see, there are some excellent options for you to go for, and although you will lack some premium features, you will still be able to capture excellent videos and work your way in the YouTube industry.
We hope you liked our picks and that you will find a suitable match for your next video. In case you still cannot decide which one to go for, we strongly suggest our number one pick, as it offers an exceptional price/value ratio and features you would expect from a more expensive unit.
Our team consistently does research about various types of cameras, and if you are enthusiastic about them, we suggest you check out our article about doorbell cameras and how they actually work.