We’ve shortlisted the five best vlogging cameras to buy in 2019 ranging from a modest R8 000 to premium R19 000. Whether you want to increase your YouTube following or make money vlogging, you need quality video and quality sound.
How do you know a great vlogging camera when you see it? A vlogging camera…
- is small, compact and selfie-ready
- shoots full HD 1080p or even 4K video (YouTube supports both formats)
- has fast autofocus (AF) for tracking moving subjects without the blur
- has an LCD monitor, preferably tilting, maybe even with touch
- has a built-in microphone
- has decent battery life
Depending on your style, it could also have:
- an electronic viewfinder (EVF)
- manual controls for aperture, shutter speed and ISO
1. GoPro HERO8
The HERO8 Black is ideal for vlogging featuring 4K60 and 1080p240, plus live-streaming at 1080p, which is up from 720p on the HERO7 Black. The HyperSmooth 2.0 image stabilisation technology now works at all resolutions and frame rates for smooth, gimbal-like movement even in low-light conditions.
Weighing only 117g (less than any other shortlisted vlogging camera) it also features a smaller, more streamlined profile with integrated mounting hardware resulting in an overall slightly smaller profile when mounted.
The camera has three strategically placed built-in microphones for recording high-fidelity audio, and captures superb 12MP quality images in JPEG and RAW. You also benefit from other features like TimeWarp 2.0, Slo-Mo, SuperPhoto + HDR and LiveBurst, not forgetting waterproof capabilities to 10m depth.
2. Canon PowerShot G7X Mark III
The G7X Mark III is one of the most revered vlogging cameras on the market. Part of the up-market PowerShot series, it offers real value for money with UHD 4K30 and Full HD 1080p120 video recording, 20 fps (8fps with AF), a 180° tilt-angle LCD touchscreen, built-in microphone, optical image stabilisation, and built-in Wi-Fi with Bluetooth. Thanks to the large 1″ CMOS sensor, it provides excellent stills quality at 20.1MP and a 24-100mm effective focal range that covers wide-angle to short-telephoto perspectives. The 5 optical zoom lets you get close to the action and weighs only 304g, which makes up for not having a hot shoe.
3. Sony Alpha A6600
The Alpha A6600 mirrorless camera offers impressive UHD 4K30 and Full HD 1080p120 video recording with super fast, hybrid (combined phase and contrast detection) AF that excels at tracking moving subjects. Features include a 180°tilting LCD screen, electronic OLED viewfinder, built-in microphone, and Wi-Fi with NFC for wireless control. It offers great image quality at 24MP and an expandable ISO 102,400 for working in low-light conditions. The A6600 body weighs only 503g and is dust and moisture resistant.
4. Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 Mark VI
The RX100 Mark VI is a premium point-and-shoot camera that’s light enough to slip into your bag without feeling like you’re lugging gear around at only 301g. It offers UHD 4K and 1080p60 video recording with a clean HDMI output function for recording video onto external devices. It also features lock-on AF, a selfie-friendly tilting LCD touchscreen, electronic viewfinder, built-in microphone, and Wi-Fi with NFC connectivity. You can even download the PlayMemories app to personalise the camera’s features to suit your style. These include time-lapse, slow-motion, sports, portraits and close-ups. Combining a 20MP sensor and a bright versatile Zeiss lens with extended zoom, the RX100 Mark VI shoots high-res stills even in dimly-lit conditions.
5. Canon EOS 90D
The Canon 90D is a budget-friendly mid-range DSLR camera ideal for full-time vloggers. This quality all-rounder captures high-res 32.5MP stills and shoots 4K30 and Full HD 1080p120 video. It incorporates a headphone and microphone jack for advanced control over audio recording, and offers built-in Wi-Fi with NFC for effortless connectivity. It has a movable flip touchscreen that is visible even in bright sunlight and performs well in low-light conditions with reduced noise and high sensitivity up to an extendable ISO 51,200. Other features include Dual Pixel CMOS and Movie Servo AF focusing ideal for high-quality autofocus in video, and is water-and-dust resistant for shooting outdoors.