We can all agree that vlogging can be an expensive passion to get started in. Can you really find a cheap vlogging camera good enough to impress your audience?
Thankfully, the answer is yes.
Using the best cheap vlogging cameras available can help you create impressive YouTube content without a huge investment.
If you are just starting out, then this post will show you affordable cameras for YouTube content and vlogging.
If price isn’t your biggest concern, then we recommend our list of the best vlogging cameras of 2017.
Cheap Vlogging Camera Summary
|Nikon COOLPIX B500 Digital Camera||Great tripod videos||1080 p||$$||4.5|
|Fujifilm FinePix S8600||Cheapest vlogging camera||720 p||$||3|
|Canon PowerShot ELPH 360 HS||Excellent value||1080 p||$$||4|
|Canon VIXIA HF R72 Camcorder||Great video, moderate budget||1080 p||$$$||4|
Most people think that if they are looking for a vlogging camera under $300 then they are going to end up with cheap looking videos.
Fans of the Nikon COOLPIX B500 would say otherwise…
While not on par with higher end DSLRs, this camera impresses with 1080p video resolution. That is the best you will find at this price. We have found simple video capture on a tripod to be very clear in decent lighting. Quality decreases slightly in low light, but that is a common shortcoming in this budget range.
The camera allows for 40x optical zoom which can come in handy, and the image stabilization is serviceable. Just don’t try and take action videos as you won’t love the results.
If you are keeping it simple with your vlog, then the COOLPIX B500 is an excellent value pick. We have found this to be a great camera overall for beginners – there is very little learning curve in its various settings, and navigation between its options is intuitive.
Basically, you’ll be vlogging in no time, and your quality is definitely going to make you look legitimate as you grow your audience.
This is the cheapest vlogging camera with enough power that we still feel like it is worthy of a recommendation.
The Fujifilm FinePix S8600 surprised us with its quality relative to its price. If you want to keep things simple and are happy with your videos looking ‘good enough’ then this is a very cheap Youtube camera that still produces respectable videos at 720p/ 30fps.
If you are just starting out, jumping into an expensive DSLR vlogging camera might be intimidating, so this is a good camera to try first. It is very easy to use and designed for beginners while still offering several features and camera modes rarely found in such a cheap vlogging camera.
The point is this:
Can you grow an audience with the S8600? Yes. Will you want to upgrade once you are ready to level up your YouTube channel? Most likely.
Let’s look at some physical features:
Lighter than a DSLR camera, but heavy enough to notice the difference if you are upgrading from a small point and click style camera. It is ergonomically designed well, and easy to handle so it won’t weigh you down when you are on the move.
Basically, you can take the FinePix S8600 to different shooting sites, but consider getting a good case first.
The FinePixS8600 isn’t going to blow anyone away, but if it is important to get a cheap vlogging camera that will still look decent on YouTube, then it doesn’t come much cheaper than this.
The Canon PowerShot ELPH 360 HS is a good cheap vlogging camera for budget conscious people who really care about video output, and won’t be taking many photos for their content.
This price point for 1080p video resolution is unreal. If you want the cheapest vlogging camera with great video, this is it.
The video performance really shines. Videos look clear while zoomed in, and we were surprised how good they look in low light settings. The stabilization isn’t high end, but it also performs better than you would expect.
There are a lot of options for different modes for such a cheap vlog camera, so you will need to spend some time getting familiar with them to get the best performance. While having choice is great, we should note that this camera isn’t as easy to use as others on this list.
The videos are strong but the catch here is that still photographs don’t look like anything special. You aren’t going to hate them but they won’t win awards, and that is ok for most vloggers.
Let’s be honest:
If you are reading this list, then budget is important and your best bet is to focus on the features that really matter to you. The PowerShot ELPH 360 HS isn’t perfect but if you want clear video and value, this is a great pick.
Camcorders seem like a forgotten breed sometimes, but they can be a great pick for vloggers on the move.
The Canon VIXIA HF R72 Camcorder is a cheap vlogging camera that still produces high end video up to par with some much more expensive rivals where many of the expensive components are primarily for still photos.
For starters, the 1080/60p video resolution looks great. In fact, this is as good as it gets for cheap vlogging cameras. To the untrained eye you will look every bit as good as top YouTube stars in clear HD video.
Unlike other cameras on this list, the VIXA HF R72 camcorder also includes an LCD flip screen so that you can see yourself while vlogging. This is a huge win as it is a key feature you often need to pay top dollar for.One other hiccup to note is we have seen some reports of issues with computer connectivity and the Canon photo software. It works for the most part, but isn’t the most user friendly technical experience.
Physically, the VIXIA HF R72 is light weight and easy to hold with its classic slim camcorder design. That is a big part of why this is an excellent go to camera if you want to include live action content and not just speak into the camera.
The battery performance is solid, and the camera comes equipped with 32 GB of space out of the box which is a welcome upgrade from many other cameras.
This isn’t the cheapest camera on our list, but if high quality video performance is important and you have a few extra bucks, we recommend the VIXA HF R72 for its (almost) professional level video output at a competitive price point.