Starting out as a vlogger on YouTube is hard enough without having to stress over which camera to buy. There are a dizzying amount of DSLR, Mirrorless and Point-and-Shoot cameras on the market. So how do you decide which one is the best camera for a new vlogger?

Well, we’ve been vlogging full-time on our YouTube channel for a good while now and we’ve learned that there are specific things that matter most when searching for the right vlogging camera:

  • Price
  • Size / Weight
  • Form Factor (swivel screen, touchscreen, etc)
  • Features
  • Quality (supporting at least 1080p)

In that order.

Most beginner vloggers are budget conscious, so price usually rules out higher end camera right out of the gate. And, honestly, you hit the point of diminishing returns pretty quickly here, or the point at which you spend a lot more money, but don’t see that big of an increase in camera quality.

Luckily for you, cameras have been fairly commoditized and you can get a very good, affordable camera for a reasonable price.

So, based on the criteria I mentioned above, here are the best vlogging cameras for YouTube beginners, organized from cheapest to most expensive.

Canon PowerShot S120

This camera draws a line where decent vlogging camera start (in my humble opinion anyways!) With a price tag of around $399, it might still be a bit high for some vloggers budgets. But, if you check out used cameras on Amazon, you can easily get this camera for around $300.

canon powershot s120

Pros

  • Super light and small
  • 1080p video
  • Tested: used by tons of vloggers
  • Intuitive touchscreen
  • Autofocus
  • Image stabilization

Cons

  • Fixed lens. No switching, mixing and matching glass.
  • No swivel screen. This isn’t a must for vloggers, but it helps a lot to be able to see what’s in the shot (and to make sure your hair is perfect before you hit record :)
  • No viewfinder, just the LCD screen

With such a short list of cons, the Canon S120 is a really great camera for vloggers, especially when you’re just starting out on YouTube.

Price it on Amazon

Canon PowerShot G7X

This is the camera we chose when we first started vlogging, and I think we made a great choice! It’s an all-around better camera than the S120, but it’s a bit more expensive at around $599. Here’s the breakdown:

canon powershot g7x

Pros

  • Super light and small
  • 1080p video
  • Swivel screen, tilts up 180 degrees
  • Tested: this is a seriously popular camera with even the biggest vloggers
  • Intuitive touchscreen
  • Autofocus
  • Image stabilization

Cons

  • Fixed lens. No switching, mixing and matching glass.
  • Focus ring make an awful clicky sound. Honestly I just steered clear of it altogether
  • No viewfinder, LCD screen only

I really can’t say enough good stuff about this camera. It’s super lightweight and versitile and the flip-up screen is just perfect for vloggers. And touch auto-focus ensures that you’re always focused on the right thing.

Price it on Amazon

Sony a6000

We recently switched from the Canon G7X to the a6000. Now that isn’t to say that the a6000 is a better camera for vlogging than the G7X. It all depends on what you’re looking for. Personally, I wanted to be able to change lens and put a legit zoom lens on the body. I also wanted a more cinematic look at 24fps, where the G7X only does 30fps.

This camera is even cheaper than some point-and-shoot cameras at around $698.

sony a6000

Pros

  • 24fps for a more cinematic feel
  • Small and light when compared to higher end mirrorless cameras like the Sony A7r
  • Amazing autofocus. Seriously, works very well
  • Screen tilts up and down. Note, it doesn’t swivel 180 degrees like the Canon G7X
  • Interchangeable lenses

Cons

  • Heavy and bulky when compared to S120, G7x and RX100
  • No in-body stabilization, but you can get a cheap lens that has this
  • No swivel camera. Just means you might think you’re recording when you’re not or you might think something is in the shot when it’s not. I thought this would be a huge issue but it hasn’t really been so far
  • No touchscreen

Price it on Amazon

Sony NEX-5RK/B

This is a really great camera by Sony. It’s light and has an intuitive physical design, which makes it a great camera for YouTube vloggers. It’s a bit more expensive than some Point-and-Shoot cameras on this list, but only by a bit, selling for around $777.

nex

Pros

  • Small and light
  • Swivel screen, tilts up 180 degrees
  • Interchangeable lenses
  • Autofocus
  • Image Stabilization
  • Touchscreen (though it’s resistive not capacitive, just means it’s a tad less responsive)

Cons

  • No viewfinder, LCD screen only

Price it on Amazon

Sony RX100 IV

This camera is pretty much the king of the Point-and-Shoots. It’s about as popular among vloggers as the Canon G7X. And for good reason! It’s design and functionality is extremely comparable. The price, however, isn’t. The Mark IV sells for around $948.

sony rx100 IV

Pros

  • Super light and small
  • 1080p video
  • Swivel screen, tilts up 180 degrees
  • Tested: this is a seriously popular camera with even the biggest vloggers
  • Autofocus
  • Image stabilization
  • Retractable viewfinder
  • 4k movie recording
  • Slow-motion movie recording

Cons

  • Fixed lens. No switching, mixing and matching glass.
  • No touchscreen

Price it on Amazon

Further Reading

Finding the right camera is only one piece of the puzzle! Check out these other guides to improve your YouTube channel and create better content:


So that's our breakdown of the best vlogging cameras for beginning YouTube vloggers. Keep in mind this is our own personal opinions. It's up to you to figure out what works for you and to do the research to find the right one.

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Thanks a lot for reading! If you have any questions or comments, you can leave those below or shoot us a message on Twitter. Happy vlogging!