5 Video Cameras for Any Budget


Most smartphones are able to record video, and they do a decent job. Note the key word, here: “Decent.” Smartphones are a great option for spontaneous video recording, but you might want to consider a more specialized device for family vacations and special moments. Shopping for a video camera can be a little overwhelming, though, because there are a lot of choices on the market. The big question potential owners must ask: What are the best video cameras you can buy on any budget – and which camcorders produce the best results as compared to mobile devices?

Thankfully, as a whole, it bears remembering: Across the board, most camcorders are still an excellent buy. They offer superior quality video recording next to smartphones, they’re more durable, they offer more storage space (as well as more storage options), and they’re cheaper than a smartphone when you take into account that you’re not locked into a phone plan for years on end. Shopping for a new video camera? Here are five of the best camcorders you can buy: 

Sony Bloggie Touch 8GB – The Sony Bloggie Touch has a bit of an odd moniker, but it’s a good middle-of-the-road camcorder. It shoots crisp, clear video despite its compact size, it captures audio well, and shooting is as easy as turning the system on and tapping the big red “Record” button. The Bloggie also interfaces easily with computers. It’s a good option for nurturing a young person who has a growing interest in making his or her own films. Note that Sony also offers affordable Bloggie models that let you live stream video to the Web, and shoot 3D footage as well – all worth keeping top of mind.

Toshiba Camileo P100 – The Camileo P100 is another easy-to-use camcorder, though unlike the rectangular Bloggie Touch, it has a pistol-like grip that makes extended shooting a little more comfortable. The Camileo P100 also features 8x optical zoom, can capture 8-megapixel stills, and has an HDMI connector, which allows for direct video playback through an HDTV. 

Canon Vixia HF G10 – The Canon Vixia HF G10 offers a lot of features in its tiny frame. It’s a little pricier than the Camileo P100 or the Bloggie, so it might be more at home in the hands of a professional—though it’s still simple enough for anyone to use. The Vixia HF G10 has a 12x zoom, can capture 14-megapixel stills, and can connect directly to an HDTV. 

Sanyo VPC-FH1A Full HD Video – The well-priced Sanyo VPC-FH1A Full HD Video is quite a mouthful, but it’s also a great little camcorder. It has a 16x zoom, it’s lightweight, and its SD/SDHC slot can support cards that go up to 32GB. 

Kodak PlaySport (Zx3) HD Waterproof Pocket Video Camera – Glub. Capture video underwater with the Kodak Playsport HD Waterproof Pocket Video Camera. This little workhorse is built to weather tough environments, and can record action even when it’s submerged up to 9.8 feet. It’s roughly the size of a smartphone, so it won’t weigh you down. 

For more information on great camcorder models, visit: 

Pocket Camcorders vs Smartphones at About.com  

5 Best Camcorders at CNET

5 Best High Definition Camcorders at The Geek Stuff

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About author

Nadia Oxford

Nadia is a freelance writer living in Toronto. She played her first game at four, decided games were awesome, and has maintained her position since. She writes for 1UP.com, Slide to Play, GamePro and other publications, and is About.com's Guide to the Nintendo DS.

View all posts by Nadia Oxford


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