Written blogs work nicely for many different subjects. But even the best writer can spice up a blog by occasionally adding a video blog entry, or vlog. A vlog is a nice change of pace. Many people even forgo the written word and focus entirely on vlogging. However, a good vlog requires good equipment. Recording your video with a poor camera will leave your viewers disappointed. Instead of focusing on your message, they'll be thinking about the lousy video quality. Luckily, our guide has all you need to know about purchasing a vlogging camera. Our favorite vlogging camera is the Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark II. It has a small size that's easy to take anywhere and crisp video quality.
Considerations when choosing vlogging cameras
There are several key considerations to think about when shopping for a vlogging camera.
Pay attention to the physical size of the image sensor (not the number of megapixels). Larger image sensors yield better video and photo quality. And they excel in low-light conditions.
If you plan to vlog from multiple locations, a smaller camera is a smart choice. You can slip it in a pocket and be ready to shoot whenever you feel like it.
The audio recording quality of digital cameras is far better than it was a decade ago. However, the camera's built-in microphone is often too sensitive, picking up a lot of background noise. Instead, we suggest looking for a vlogging camera with a microphone port, so you can plug in a mic for the best audio quality.
Many of the features that make cameras good for photography and everyday video recording also make them good for vlogging. However, there are a few specific features that simplify vlogging.
Rotating LCD screen
With a display screen that rotates 180 degrees, you can see what's being recorded while you're in the scene. If you plan to have your camera attached to a tripod, just be sure the screen rotates to the side or upward, rather than downward.
Vlogging cameras can record at multiple resolutions. 4K resolution is the highest quality, but it can cause slow uploads and downloads. Full HD resolution has the best mix of recording quality and download speeds. For the fastest downloads, stick with SD resolution.
If your vlogging camera has wireless connection capabilities, you can use a remote control with the camera. You may also be able to use a smartphone app to remotely control the camera. This is a great feature for vlogging as you don't have to walk to the camera to start recording. You can sit in the scene and remotely start recording.
Prices for vlogging cameras range widely. Inexpensive vlogging cameras cost as little as $200. These cameras can shoot HD video, but they need perfect lighting conditions to excel. An average vlogging camera that will work for the majority of people costs $400 to $1,200. You can buy a model that costs more than $1,200. However, unless you also need outstanding photographic quality, such a pricey camera is probably overkill for vloggers.
Q. Can I use any digital camera for vlogging?
A. You can, but some camera models are significantly better for vlogging than others. Buying a camera that excels in the areas that are most important for vlogging will simplify the process by reducing frustration.
Q. I often need to shoot video in poor light. What are my options?
A. Search for a vlogging camera that performs well in low light. These cameras have large image sensors. A one-inch, 4/3, APS-C, or full-frame image sensor will deliver the best quality in low light.
Vlogging cameras we recommend
Best of the best: Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark II
Our take: A small camera that has plenty of great features for video blogging, including strong low-light performance.
What we like: The LCD screen tilts 180 degrees, so you can view what's being recorded while you're in the scene. This size is helpful for travel.
What we dislike: Doesn't quite match the image and video quality of a DSLR camera.
Best bang for your buck: Panasonic Lumix G7
Our take: If you want to shoot video with 4K resolution, this vlogging camera does so at a reasonable price point.
What we like: Rotating LCD screen is handy for selfies and vlogging on the go. Offers an easy-to-use wireless transfer mode.
What we dislike: Recording vlogs in 4K may lead to slow download speeds for viewers.
Choice 3: Canon EOS 80D DSLR
Our take: An excellent DSLR camera for both still images and video recording, but it may be too pricey for only vlogging.
What we like: Performance in low light easily surpasses the majority of fixed-lens cameras. You can pick just the right lens for your vlogging needs.
What we dislike: Battery may not stand up to long video recording sessions.
Kyle Schurman is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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