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13 Best Cameras for YouTube (Full Guide For Every Budget)

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13 Best Cameras for YouTube (Full Guide For Every Budget)

At the heart of every YouTuber’s setup is their camera. Your choice of camera can effortlessly level up your content, capturing your footage in HD quality every time. Although choosing a camera for YouTube sounds easy enough, whether you’re a beginner or experienced content creator, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the jargon and technicalities. In this guide, we walk you through making an informed choice from the best cameras on the market now.

TL;DR 

  • The right camera for you and your YouTube channel is a subjective choice that comes down to what type of content you’re filming. 
  • When choosing a camera, consider budget, type, stabilization, video & audio quality. 
  • For vlogs, try the Sony ZV-1, Mark ii, or Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III
  • If you’re looking for an action camera, the GoPro Hero 10  is perfect for you
  • Mirrorless cameras and DSLRs offer high quality (for higher prices), Fujifilm X-S10 and the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV  are good options. 

How to Choose the Right Camera for YouTube

First of all, no single camera will tick every content creator’s boxes. 

We mean that the ‘right’ camera for you and your youtube channel will come down to what kind of youtube videos you tend to create. For example, the best camera for filming a vlog will not be the best for live streaming. In addition, if you’re a beginner, your needs are likely to be a little different from a well-seasoned YouTuber. 

That being said, here are some of the key factors all YouTubers should consider when it comes to their camera: 

Budget 

Your budget is possibly the most crucial consideration. How much you’re able to invest in your camera will determine what range and type of camera you can get your hands on. 

If you’re still on the market for a high-value camera, a good tip is to look for second-hand or used listings. You may just find the camera you’ve been dreaming of at your price point. 

Type of Camera 

Secondly, you’ll need to decide what kind of camera you need. Combined with your budget, this will help refine your search and narrow down your options. 

DSLR 

DSLR stands for Digital Single-Lens Reflex camera. DSLRs boast valuable flexibility because you can change out the lens depending on your needs - and there are a lot of lenses out there for every model. 

Mirrorless 

Mirrorless cameras tend to be more lightweight than DSLRs. Many photographers and videographers would argue that mirrorless cameras capture more faithful footage than DSLRs. That said, they are also power-intensive, so DSLRs win on battery life. 

Point & Shoot 

Point and Shoot cameras are an excellent option for creators who film on the go. Though they may not have the performance capabilities of mirrorless or DSLR counterparts, they're easy and portable. 

Smartphone 

Don’t underestimate the power of your smartphone. If you’re on a tight budget, using your phone could be a great money-saving option to start with. 

Action camera 

If you need a reliable, robust, and sturdy camera, consider purchasing an action camera. These cameras are ready for everything and anything. 

Video Quality & Resolution

For obvious reasons, video quality is vital when it comes to creating YouTube videos. These days, your viewers will expect nothing less than top quality from your videos. So, if there’s one thing you shouldn’t compromise on, it’s being able to record in superb HD quality. 

As far as possible, opt for a camera that shoots in at least 1080p or Full HD. If you’ve got the budget, you should look for a camera with 4k resolution.

Stabilization

Stabilization is a key consideration if you’re shooting while moving. This is probably less of a concern if you film in a studio setting. 

Some newer cameras have IBIS, which stands for in-body image stabilization. This helps to stabilize your videos and guarantee shake-free recordings. Don’t worry, though; if the camera you’ve got your eye on doesn’t have excellent stabilization, you can always use a tripod. 

Frame Rate 

Frame Rate, also known as Frame Per Second (FPS), refers to how many still images are captured per unit of time (generally seconds).

The higher the frame rate, the higher the video quality. For 4K video, you should be looking for anything above 30fps. 

Sensor Size 

A camera’s sensor dictates the image and video quality that it captures. Generally speaking, cameras with bigger sensors shoot better images and capture video even in low light. 

The two types of sensors are Active-Pixel Sensor (CMOS) and Charge-Coupled Device (CCD). You’ll tend to find CCD sensors in more professional-grade cameras, while CMOS sensors are more affordable and aimed at consumers. 

You will also frequently see the terms APS-C sensor, full-frame sensor, and micro four-thirds. A full-frame sensor is the conventional sensor size for 35 mm cameras, while an APS-C sensor measures approximately 0.98 x 0.65” (although this varies between brands). Micro Four Thirds sensors are even smaller than APS-C sensors and measure 0.68 x 0.5 “. 

Autofocus

Autofocus should be a massive priority for YouTubers, especially if you’re self-shooting. With a good autofocus feature, you will always capture exactly what you mean to, in the highest quality possible. 

Lenses

Lenses are often a standalone investment, separate from your initial camera purchase. If you’re on more of a budget, it may suit you to settle (at first) with the kit lens that comes with your camera. 

If you’ve got a bit more to spend, or are looking to make a long-term investment, then when you weigh up between cameras, the available lenses should also factor into your decision. 

Portability 

If, on the whole,  you’re going to be shooting vlogs, you’ll need a compact camera that is highly portable and compact. The same applies if you’ll be filming at different locations frequently. For this reason, a lot of YouTubers go for mirrorless cameras that benefit from a whole host of professional features without the weight. 

Useability 

Although it can be tempting to opt for the most professional camera on the market, it’s better not to jump the gun if you’re a beginner. When you’re just starting as a beginner, the best youtube camera for you will be one that you feel comfortable using. Once you progress, you can invest in a higher-grade camera. 

Microphone & Audio 

Audio quality is also fundamental to recording a high-production quality YouTube video. If the built-in audio microphone on your dream camera isn’t up to scratch, check the mic inputs and whether you can attach an external microphone. This is a surefire way to improve the audio quality without having to give up on your camera. 

Another consideration is if you need a camera with a headphone jack, perhaps if your cameraman wants to monitor the audio as you record. 

Battery life 

Battery life should be a major consideration for cameras for YouTube if you’re filming on location or away from home. This won’t matter if you consistently film from a studio environment. 

Best Cameras For YouTubers in 2022

1. Sony ZV-1

  • Price: $648.00
  • Sensor type/size: 1” CMOS  
  • Resolution: 20.1MP
  • Max movie resolution: 4k 30p
  • Size & Weight:  105.5 x 60.0 x 43.5 mm, 294g
  • Audio: In-built directional 3-capsule microphone, with the option to attach an external mic with a 3.5mm microphone port.
  • Battery life: 260 shots or 45 minutes of recording
  • Autofocus: Reliable autofocus feature
  • Stabilization: Active SteadyShot image stabilization
  • Frame rate: 120 - 960 fps 
Sony ZV-1 YouTube camera
(Sony ZV-1)

The Sony ZV-1 is one of your best cameras for YouTube vlogging in selfie mode. There’s a light in the front that turns on when recording, so you know exactly when the camera is shooting without having to look at the screen. The camera is also compatible with various control grips. It can record in 4K resolution and has automated filters to streamline your creative process. Best of all, it has a Product Showcase Setting which automatically switches the focus from your face to a product as soon as you hold it up in front of the camera. This means no more focus mess-ups, making it great for reviewing products from up close.

Pros

  • Ideal for selfie vlogging on Youtube
  • Great filters and focus features for streamlined recording
  • Compatible with shooting grips for easier solo-filming

Cons

  • Doesn’t have the best battery life

2. Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III

  • Price: $749.00
  • Sensor size/type: 1” CMOS sensor
  • Resolution: 20.2 MP 
  • Max movie resolution:  4K Video  
  • Size & Weight:  4.13 x 2.4 x 1.61, 10.72 oz
  • Audio: Decent built in mic and stereo mini jack 
  • Battery life: 265 shots
  • Autofocus: Contrast detect autofocus system 
  • Stabilization: In-lens stabilization and digital IS modes 
  • Frame rate: 120 fps 
Canon PowerShot G7 Mark II Camera for YouTube
(Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III)

The fact that the Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III can connect directly to YouTube makes it one of the best cameras for YouTube live streaming. This requires a bit of a setup the first time round but is definitely worth it for an easy live streaming setup afterwards. It also records in high-quality resolution and offers vertical video recording support, which is great for those vlogging YouTube shorts who need a vertical layout.

Pros

  • Easy live streaming setup to YouTube
  • Can link to your phone with the Canon Camera Connect App
  • Vertical recording support

Cons

  • No viewfinder (you have to rely on the digital screen to see what you’re recording)
  • Screen display doesn’t rotate out in the most ideal way

3. GoPro Hero 10 

  • Price: $429.99
  • Sensor type/size: 1 / 2.3” CMOS
  • Resolution: 23.6MP 
  • Max movie resolution: 5.3K60 and 4K120 video 
  • Size & Weight:  2.8 x 2.0 x 1.3”, 5.6 oz
  • Audio: Good in-built mics, with the option to plug in an external mic 
  • Battery life: 56 minutes of 5.3K60 video 
  • Autofocus: N/A
  • Stabilization: Advanced HyperSmooth 4.0 video stabilization
  • Frame rate: 5.3K up to 60fps, 4K up to 120fps 
GoPro Hero 10 best action camera for Youtube
(GoPro Hero 10)

GoPros are known to be super compactable cameras ideal for vlogging. This is no different for the GoPro Hero 10 which offers direct live streaming from your camera at up to 1080p HD. It’s particularly good for adventure YouTube vloggers as it’s also waterproof at up to 33ft. The camera has low light capabilities and also offers cloud storage connection so all your recordings are backed up somewhere safe. 

Pros

  • Ideal for adventurous bloggers (especially those dealing with water activities or sports)
  • Compact and highly portable
  • Direct live streaming

Cons

  • Not the best battery life
  • Heavier and bigger than other Go Pro models

4. DJI Pocket 2 

  • Price: $349
  • Sensor type/size: 1 /1.7” sensor CMOS 
  • Resolution: 64MP 
  • Max movie resolution: 4K video
  • Size & Weight: 4.91 x 1.5 x 1.18”, 4.1oz
  • Audio: 4 in-built microphones, record audio in different directions
  • Battery life: 140 minutes 
  • Autofocus: N/A
  • Stabilization: Motorized stabilization 
  • Frame rate: 60fps 
DJI Pocket 2 YouTube camera
(DJI Pocket 2)

Another compact camera for YouTube is the DJI Pocket 2. This camera is a little bigger than the GoPro Hero 10, but offers interesting features. You can place your camera down and have it angle and swivel towards you as you move, with the DJI Pocket 2’s active track function. You can also try its story mode feature that offers templates and music to boost your creativity when vlogging. Overall, for a pocket camera, the DJI Pocket 2 offers a lot.

Pros

  • Great features for vlogging creatively
  • AI Editor for smooth and streamlined video editing 
  • Active track function so you can easily record yourself while moving

Cons

  • Small display screen to work with

5. Insta360 One X2 

  • Price: $386.99 
  • Sensor type/size: 1 / 2.3” CMOS
  • Resolution: 18.4 MP 
  • Max movie resolution: 5.7 K 360 Capture  
  • Size & Weight:  2.1 x 0.9 x 08”, 0.65oz  
  • Audio: 4-mic 360 degree audio 
  • Battery life: 200 clips, or 67 minutes 
  • Autofocus: N/A
  • Stabilization: Flow State Stabilization 
  • Frame rate: 25 - 100 fps
Insta360 One X2 YouTube camera
(Insta360 ONE X2)

The Insta360 One X2  is another waterproof camera for action YouTube vloggers. It can operate through voice control and is a 360-degree camera. This means that it doesn’t just capture what’s in front. This camera can capture everything within a 360-degree angle around it all at once. You can also connect the camera to Insta360’s invisible selfie stick for drone-like shots without actually using a drone. This is a great pocket camera, especially for active YouTube vloggers on the go.

Pros

  • 360-degree recordings
  • Compact and waterproof making it ideal for action shots
  • Comes with an app for easy social media editing
  • AI editing features
  • Multi-view camera recording

Cons

  • Can’t use the camera while the battery is charging

6. Fujifilm X-S10

  • Price: $999.00 (without lens) 
  • Sensor type/size: 2 / 3” CMOS 
  • Resolution: 26.1MP 
  • Max movie resolution: 4k 30p 
  • Size & Weight:  3.4 x 5.0 x 2.6 “, 16.4 oz
  • Audio: Decent in-built mic, as well as 3.5 mm mic socket as well as a headphone jack (if you add USB dongle) 
  • Battery life: 325 shots or around 40 minutes 
  • Autofocus: In-built autofocus mode
  • Stabilization: IBIS
  • Frame rate: 30 - 240fps 
Fujifilm X-S10 Camera or YouTube
(Fujifilm X-S10)

The Fujifilm X-S10 is another good camera for YouTube creatives. It has various filter features such as film simulation modes, tone, grain, and color chrome effects that are ideal for YouTubers looking to easily create a consistent aesthetic throughout their videos. You can also create your own saved customized settings presets for recording.

Pros

  • Great features for getting aesthetically creative 
  • Good image stabilization 

Cons

  • Not the most compact or ideal for action vloggers on the move.

7. Canon EOS M50 Mark II 

  • Price: $699.00 (with 15-45 mm Lens) 
  • Sensor type/size: APS-C CMOS sensor
  • Resolution: 24.1MP 
  • Max movie resolution: UHD 4K and HD 720p120 video  
  • Size & Weight:  4.57 x 3.46 x 2.32”, 13.65 oz 
  • Audio: Decent in-built mic, can attach external microphone 
  • Battery life: 305 shots 
  • Autofocus: Dual pixel autofocus with eye-tracking
  • Stabilization: Digital Image Stabilization 
  • Frame rate: 7.4 - 10 fps 

Another Canon camera that is great for YouTube, is the Canon EOS M50 Mark I. This camera can easily be turned into a webcam, and just like the Canon PowerShot G7 offers live streaming capabilities directly to YouTube. It also has a silent mode operation setting so you don’t have to worry about making a noise when filming in a quiet environment. 

Pros

  • Direct live streaming to YouTube
  • Cloud services available for seamless uploading
  • Can connect to your smartphone with the Canon Connect app

Cons

  • Doesn’t have the best battery life 

8. Nikon Z6 

  • Price: $1,596.95 (without lens)
  • Sensor type/size: Micro-four thirds CMOS sensor
  • Resolution: 24.5MP 
  • Max movie resolution: UHD 4K30 Video 
  • Size & Weight: 5.3 x 4 x 2.7 “, 1.49 lb 
  • Audio: Stereo microphone built-in, mic-in jack 
  • Battery life: 310 shots or 130 minutes filming 
  • Autofocus: Continuous autofocus mode 
  • Stabilization: In-camera sensor-shift Image Stabilization 
  • Frame rate: up to 12fps 
Nikon Z6 YouTube camera
(Nikon Z6)

The Nikon Z6 is an all-around camera. It offers a unique viewfinder with a customizable display menu so you can see all the information you need without having to switch to your camera’s display screen. It has a 4K time-lapse feature where you can take and combine up to 9,999 stills. You can also use the camera’s time code feature for easier time logging in post-production and you can easily connect the camera to your phone for remote shooting.

Pros

  • You can wirelessly connect the camera to your phone 
  • High color details with Nikon’s N-Log feature
  • Good video stabilization

Con

  • Touch display screen doesn’t flip, making it a little less difficult to use for recording in selfie mode. 

9. Panasonic Lumix GH5 II

  • Price: $1,297.99 (without lens)
  • Sensor type/size: Micro Four Thirds CMOS sensor
  • Resolution: 20.3 MP 
  • Max movie resolution: 4K Video 
  • Size & Weight:  3.9 x 5.5 x 3.4 “, 1.6 lbs
  • Audio: Dolby quality stereo sound and 2 XLR audio inputs 
  • Battery life: 400 shots or 60 minutes 4K video 
  • Autofocus: IBIS 
  • Stabilization: 5 axis sensor stabilization
  • Frame rate: Up to 60 fps
Panasonic Lumix GH5 II
( Panasonic Lumix GH5 II )

Another DSLR camera that makes it on our list of the best video cameras for YouTube is the Panasonic Lumix GH5 II. This camera is designed to deal with rough weather conditions and offers wireless live streaming capabilities. 

Pros

  • Wireless live streaming in up to 1080p HD
  • Various video  and color modes to choose from
  • Can easily connect to your phone wirelessly

Cons

  • Doesn’t offer the ability to capture RAW video

10. Sony A6600

  • Price: $1,398.00 (without lens)
  • Sensor type/size: APS-C CMOS sensor
  • Resolution: 24.2MP 
  • Max movie resolution:  UHD 4K30p Video 
  • Size & Weight:  5.3 x 4 x 2.7 “, 1.49 lb 
  • Audio: 2 in-built microphones, microphone, and headphone jack 
  • Battery life: 720 shots or 150 minutes video 
  • Autofocus: Autofocus including Lock-on AF
  • Stabilization: 5 axis SteadyShot INSIDE image stabilization 
  • Frame rate: up to 30fps 
Sony A6600
(Sony A6600)

The Sony A6600 is another camera with good autofocus capabilities, making it ideal for recording videos with subjects moving. It has an AI-based subject tracking feature and offers real-time eye auto-focus for both humans and animals. 

Pros

  • Great autofocus tracking
  • Interval recording for timelapses
  • Tiltable screen which makes it easier to record in selfie mode

Cons

  • Doesn’t have the most ergonomic design
  • Only has space for one UHS-I card 

11. Canon EOS 5D Mark IV  

  • Price: $2,699.00 (without lens) 
  • Sensor type/size: Full Frame CMOS
  • Resolution: 30.4MP 
  • Max movie resolution:  4K video 
  • Size & Weight:  5.93 x 4.58 x 2.99”, 31.4 oz 
  • Audio: In-built mic and mic jack 
  • Battery life: 900 shots or 270 minutes filming 
  • Autofocus: Movie Servo Autofocus 
  • Stabilization: N/A
  • Frame rate: up to 30fps 
Canon EOS 5D Mark IV camera for YouTube
(Canon EOS 5D Mark IV)

The Canon EOS 5D Mark IV is the right YouTube camera for you if you’re looking for an expansive dynamic range. With its Canon Log feature you get detailed highlights and shadows, giving you more flexibility to create the aesthetic you want in post-production. 

Pros

  • Wifi capabilities to connect to smartphone devices and the web
  • High dynamic range for more flexibility in post-production

Cons

  • Saves video files in Motion JPEG which can take up a lot of storage space

12. Nikon D7500

  • Price: $996.95 (no lens) 
  • Sensor type/size: APS-C CMOS
  • Resolution: 20.9 MP 
  • Max movie resolution: 4K UHD Video
  • Size & Weight: 5.4 x 4.1 x 2.9”, 25.40 oz 
  • Audio: Decent in-built mic, external mic, and headphone jack 
  • Battery life: 950 shots or 80 minutes shooting 
  • Autofocus: 51 point Multicam 3600 FX II autofocus system 
  • Stabilization: In e-VR image stabilization 
  • Frame rate: up to 60fps
Nikon D7500 YouTube Camera
(Nikon D7500)

The Nikon D7500 offers various filming features. It has a Power Aperture control for adjusting your aperture while recording. You also have the option to record in MP4 format, which is ideal for posting on social media platforms.

Pros

  • Various special effects to choose from
  • Electronic smooth VR for capturing video without a tripod
  • Good autofocus functionality

Cons

  • Monitor screen doesn’t fully rotate

13. Nikon D780 

  • Price: $2,296.95 
  • Sensor type/size: full frame CMOS 
  • Resolution: 24.5MP 
  • Max movie resolution: UHD 4K30 Video  
  • Size & Weight: 5.7 x 4.6 x 3”, 13.7oz 
  • Audio: Decent in-built mic, with external mic jack 
  • Battery life: 2,260 shots
  • Autofocus: 273 point Hybrid AF system  
  • Stabilization: Electronic stabilization (with slight crop)
  • Frame rate: up to 120fps
Nikon D780 YouTube Camera
(Nikon D780)

The Nikon D780 is a versatile camera with some great video-recording features. It has an impressive autofocus system and can record with an HDR (HLG) format which simply enhances the dynamic range for a vibrant aesthetic. Other than this it offers creative filters and wifi capabilities.

Pros

  • Durable camera
  • Time-logging for easier synchronization
  • Good battery life

Cons

  • Autofocus when using the viewfinder is a little limiting
  • It’s considered to be an expensive camera for what it offers.

Best Vlogging Cameras for YouTube

Best Action & Pocket Cameras  for YouTube

Best Mirrorless Cameras for YouTube

Best DSLR Youtube Cameras

Best Cameras for Youtube Videos FAQs

Which camera do YouTubers use?

All content creators use different cameras to suit their needs. For this reason, there’s no single answer to this question. However, our recommendations above capture the most popular cameras on the market right now. 

What cameras do famous YouTubers use?

Many famous vloggers such as Alfie Deyes and Joey Graceffa use the Canon Powershot G7 X. GoPros are also popular because of their durability and versatility.

What camera does a vlogger use?

Vlogging means filming your day-to-day life. This means bringing a camera everywhere you go and filming wherever you are. For this reason, vloggers generally opt for lightweight and compact cameras. Some vloggers prefer to use their smartphones, others go for compact, action-ready cameras like the GoPro, and others go for smaller DLSRs or point and shoot cameras. 

What kind of camera is best for making YouTube videos?

As we’ve outlined, this comes down to the type of YouTube video you’re making. Once you’ve settled on the kind of content you want to create, it’ll be easier to decide what the best camera for you will be. 

What is a good beginner camera for vlogging?

Your smartphone is quite a good place to start. These days mobile phone cameras offer high quality and convenience. That said, if you’re looking for a separate camera, try the Sony ZV-1, Mark ii as we recommended above. 

Which camera is best for video making?

Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all camera for video making. Once you know what kinds of videos you will be producing, you’ll better understand what kind of camera you need. 

What camera should a beginner Youtuber use?

We would recommend a compact and relatively affordable camera like the Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III or the Sony ZV-1, Mark ii, which are perfect for vlogging but are also highly versatile.  If you’re apprehensive about investing in a camera, why not try starting out using your smartphone. 

What cheap camera do YouTubers use?

Your first option should be your smartphone if you’re on a budget—high-quality video for no additional cost - a win-win. If you’re on the market for a camera, browse second-hand listings for popular models. You’ll be surprised by the deals you can find. Alternatively, why not opt for a versatile and robust camera like the GoPro Hero 10?

Which DSLR camera is best for YouTube videos?

There are so many excellent DSLR options for YouTube, but the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV, Nikon D7500, and Nikon D780 are of particular note. 

Are expensive cameras better for capturing YouTube videos?

It depends! While they might offer more features, if you're a complete beginner it might be better to stick to something less overwhelming and easier to use. You can even start off by shooting on your smartphone. Some smartphones offer impressive quality and if you’re on a tight budget or not quite ready to make a financial investment this is a great choice.

If you're more comfortable with cameras then make sure to at least invest in a camera suited to your needs rather than just focusing on price. For example, you might need a waterproof action camera if you're vlogging about wild adventures on the go, or you might invest in a proper DSLR for more functional flexibility.

Can you use a GoPro for YouTube videos?

GoPro's are particularly good cameras for YouTube videos on the go. The fact that they're pocket-sized and waterproof makes them ideal to carry on fun adventures. If you're looking to film action shots or any type of wild experience, a GoPro could be a great choice for you.

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