The smartphone is the new entry-level camera. Nowadays, digital compact (also known as point-and-shoot) cameras have advanced features that are perfect for someone who has an interest in photography and wants to play around with manual settings.

Quality at a great price

Compact cameras are more affordable than ever and an inexpensive camera option for getting in the game.  Compared to your smartphone, compact cameras’ battery life is made to last, allowing you to take up to 500 photographs per charge. Sure, you can use your phone, but you won’t necessarily have it charged for when you need to fire up your GPS location.

Advanced features

Compact cameras are still as easy to use as ever, but give you more creative control over smartphones with:

  • optical (versus digital) zoom functions for true image quality
  • larger (1/2.3″) sensor sizes for sharper, clearer photos
  • larger aperture that utilises depth-of-field for smoother bokeh
  • better low-light performance, useful at night
  • motion tracking for great action shots


Bokeh (pronounced bohkay) is the aesthetic quality of a blur in the out-of-focus part of an image produced by a lens. It makes photos more visually appealing, and allow photographers to focus on a particular area in an image.

Great for underwater photography enthusiasts

If you’re a scuba diver interest in dabbling in underwater photography, here’s a life hack for you: Compact camera housings are much more affordable than intermediate- to pro-level DSLRs housings.

Our recommendations

If you’re a more serious photographer who wants to improve your photography skills, we recommend buying a compact camera from the Canon PowerShot, Sony Cyber-shot RX and Panasonix Lumix series, and Olympus TG series for underwater shots. Get one with manual control and a versatile lens so you can start experimenting.

Canon PowerShot SX740 HS

Available in black and silver, the Canon PowerShot SX740 HS is a great travelling companion featuring a high-res 20MP CMOS sensor for quality images and a 40x optical zoom lens for capturing detail near and far. The lens has optical stabilisation tech for sharp, blur-free images even in low light. Share using Wi-Fi / NFC technology.

Canon PowerShot SX740 HS Digital Compact Camera in Black
Olympus TG-6

The waterproof Olympus TG-6 is the ultimate partner to your most challenging adventures, built to tough extreme environments from the Arctic to the undersea world. Features a 12MP camera, 4K video recording and a 4x optical zoom f/2 zoom lens.

Olympus Tough TG-6 Waterproof Digital Camera in Black
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-Rx100 VII

The Sony DSC-RX100 VII has a new 20.1MP 1″ Stacked CMOS image sensor designed for speed. Combined with the latest BIONZ X image processor, this compact body delivers superior speed performance when shooting stills or movies. The built-in Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* 24-200mm f/2.8-4.5 zoom lens covers a broad span of zoom ranges equivalent to two standard zoom lenses (24-70mm and 70-200mm).

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 VII Digital Camera
Panasonic Lumix DC-LX100 II

The Panasonic Lumix DC-LX100 II features a large 17MP 4/3″ image sensor that outputs detailed still images and captures brilliant 4K video at 24 or 30 fps. The built-in Leica DC Vario-Summilux lens has a zoom range of 24-75mm (35mm equivalent) and a bright f/1.7-2.8 aperture range, making it more than capable of handling a variety of low-light scenarios.

Panasonic Lumix DC-LX100 II Digital Camera in black
Canon PowerShot G7 Mk III

The Canon PowerShot G7X Mk III has an advanced 20.2MP 1″ Stacked CMOS image sensor which, paired with a DIGIC 8 image processor, achieves fast focusing performance, full-resolution shooting at up to 20 fps and UHD 4K30p video recording. It’s equipped with a bright f/1.8 4.2x zoom lens lens and a built-in flash.

PowerShot G7X Mark III Digital Camera in Black

Remember that the best camera is the one you have with you! Which do you prefer?