What Is The Best Vlogging Camera Under 200 USD?

What Is The Best Vlogging Camera Under 200 USD?

Creating a YouTube Vlog – even if only for personal use and to share holiday videos with friends and family – is exciting. The entire process of recording, editing and uploading a video is an extremely rewarding experience that I think everyone should give a go. Plus, you don’t need to be intimidated by searching for that vlogging camera that youtubers use. There are several but here is one of the best starter vlogging cameras.

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What Is The Best Vlogging Camera Under 200 USD?

What Do You Need to Start Vlogging

To start recording a Vlog, you essentially need yourself, a YouTube account and a camera. It really is that simple! But one question I get asked by many new creators is “what is the best vlogging camera under 200 USD?”.

Believe it to not, there is actually a wide range of top vlogging cameras under 200 that offer a lot of value and features for YouTube content creators! So after trying close to a dozen cameras over my YouTube journey, here is my all time favourite!

Canon PowerShot ELPH 360 Digital Camera w/12x Optical Zoom

When it comes to creating YouTube videos, there are certain features that are needed as vloggers tend to record in different styles than traditional movies makers. You don’t need super high tech, pricy equipment or even top vlogging cameras at the start of your vlogging adventure. You can very well go for the best cheap vlogging camera, such as this Canon vlog camera.

Lens

One must have feature is a wide angle lens which allows vloggers to hold the camera out in front of them while recording themselves. Typically a range between 15-30mm is ideal for a wide angle lens. As for the Canon PowerShot ELPH 360, you can expect a 25mm wide angle lens, which is more than adequate for recording vlog style videos. There is also a 12 X optical zoom as well in case you want to film farther away.

Video Quality

Another feature important to your audience is HD video quality, preferably in a minimum definition of 1080P. While many top vlogging cameras under the 200 USD range are still sporting 720P, the ELPH 360 has a recording definition of 1920 x 1080 pixels.

How about the actually sharpness and vibrancy of the video output on this unit? While it’s not amazing, it still does a remarkably good job of providing consistently pin point sharp video and a very good colour range. After researching this camera more, I can put this down to the Canon CMOS sensor and DIGIC 4+ Image Processor, which Canon is best known for.

While the colour vibrancy isn’t as impactful as say a Sony or Nikon, the Canon PowerShot ELPH 360 still does a really great job. Also saturation and vibrancy can easily be added in post production editing. That is why it’s totally ok to look for the best vlogging camera under 200 USD because editing software isn’t cheap either.

Microphone

When it comes to making great films, the video only plays half the part. Many times I have come across a well lit and shot video only to find the audio is hissy with a lot of noise. No thanks! This is an immediate turnoff, no matter how good the video production is.

As for the audio on the ELPH 360, I was pleasantly surprised by the end audio quality. While it wasn’t as good as using a dedicated shotgun microphone, it easily passed my test for good sounding audio. Just be cautious if you plan on recording in windy condition or areas with a lot of background noise as it can be quite noticeable.

However there is an easy way to minimise this background noise, which is by opting for a very cheap wind filter which can be stuck on the microphone. Typically you can pick these up for a couple of dollars and they do wonders for audio. Alternatively, you can use an external microphone or increase the “High Pass” audio option in your video editing software.

Build Quality

Another extremely important feature of a good vlogging camera is the durability and build quality of the overall camera. In the past two years, I’ve had at least five cameras break on me, whether it was due to constant daily use of the or just poor choice of build materials.

When it comes to the build quality on the Canon PowerShot ELPH 360, it followed the same quality of craftsmanship that I have come to expect from Canon. I never hesitated to put this camera into my pocket or have it sitting loosely in my backpack. For added protection I would recommend picking up a carry case. This only costs a couple of dollars.

More Vlogging Camera Features

  • 12x Optical Zoom with Optical Image Stabilizer
  • Built-in Wi-Fi and NFC
  • 1080p HD video capabilities, 20.2 Megapixel CMOS sensor
  • Large 3.0-inch LCD display
  • Hybrid Auto lens
  • Creative Shot mode
  • Compatible with iOS and Android

Wrapping It Up with Your Vlogging Camera

Overall I was extremely impressed with my Canon PowerShot ELPH 360 for video and audio quality. It easily deserves my number one pick for the best vlogging camera under 200 USD. While it’s not a perfect camera, it really does provide all the essential features for a new video blogger. You gotta start somewhere!

If you would like to learn more about content creation, you can check out this this resource guide on vlogging. Also if you want to find the best lighting equipment for your videos, you can read up on this list of LED lights for video.

Guest Author Bio - Bill Roberts
Hi! My name is Bill Roberts and I have been creating videos and writing about vlogging for over three years. I truly believe that vlogging is the future of media consumption as it shares perspective of people from all over the world.
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What Is The Best Vlogging Camera Under 200 USD?

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Comments

  1. Reply

    The idea of vlogging makes me a bit nervous, but it’s something I definitely want to look into. Since I would be starting from scratch, knowing there are good cameras out there that I can afford is great. Bad sound quality is also something i’ve run into, just in doing Instagram stories, so I’m glad you also suggested a microphone!

    1. Reply

      I totally know how you feel. I felt intimidated at first as well. It really feels super awkward at first and will most likely be bad. But thats totally normal and practice makes all the difference. And yes, microphones are a huge step up in audio quality!

  2. Reply

    Interesting. We are going to be doing some recording this summer and while we have a few video cameras, it’s good to read about a newer model. It sounds like investing in an external microphone might be a great idea though.

    1. Reply

      Hi Kathleen, what cameras have you been using so far? External microphones are always a great idea. It makes a huge difference.

  3. Reply

    I love that this camera is so small and appreciate the need for a wide-angle lens. I’ve been using my cell phone or Canon for video and the difference is striking. Vlogging is still new to me but documenting my travels with video isn’t. Working my way back in front of the camera.

    1. Reply

      Hi Elaine, it really is super small and compact. And with vlogging, it really is all about practice to get a feel for it, let your personality shine and remove any possible awkwardness.

    • Susanna
    • 18/06/2018
    Reply

    I’ve always wanted to start a blog and foolishly thought a GoPro would be ideal for this. I’ve since learned my lesson and mostly just use my phone for any video I do take. This camera looks really compact, light and great for taking video. Thanks for the recommendation.

    1. Reply

      Hi Susanna, there are multiple ways to start blogging and vlogging. The sound option with a GoPro isn’t good, I agree. But don’t give up!

  4. We definitely need to get a better microphone for our video productions. That hiss. That annoying hiss just doesn’t seem to stop. We have thought about an external mic for some time and it seems like sometime is now.

    1. Reply

      Hi Jenn and Ed, I feel ya. The constant noise that seems to come with integrated camera microphones is just terrible.

  5. Reply

    We are not yet vlogging but considering it. So this blog post was timely. Build quality is something I will look at more. We have had three cameras dropped with just still photography. I sometimes wish cameras came with cases like cell phones for when you are actually using them. As we age, a large viewing screen becomes more important :-)

    1. Reply

      Hi Linda, that’s great that I picked just the right time! And build is everything. The things my camera goes through… it has to be sturdy.

    • Indrani
    • 20/06/2018
    Reply

    Very useful information. Vlogging is a rage now better to be equipped with right gadget. I had overlooked the importance of microphone. Useful tip given.

    1. Reply

      Hi Indrani, thank you for your comment. :)

  6. Reply

    Oh i have this camera but only use it as point and shot when I need to be quick snapping a photo instead of my dslr i didnt think it would be great for video as well

    1. Reply

      Hi Anneklien, let me know if you do try it out for video. :)

  7. Reply

    Cool. I’ve been thinking of picking up a smaller camera for times when I don’t want to haul my DSLR around. This camera looks like a great option and gives me the flexibility to vlog as well. Usually I just use my phone!

    1. Reply

      Hi Adelina, I know the feeling. DSLRs are just so bulky and heavy.

    • Callan
    • 21/06/2018
    Reply

    Nice review, I’m a Canon man myself, have been from the start. I just prefer the colouring over other brands. Seems like a great choice for traveling due to being lightweight and durable. How’s the battery life and charge time?

    1. Reply

      Hi Callan, never really thought about the colouring with Canon but the photos are really great quality, that’s for sure. I will ask the guest author about the How’s the battery life and charge time.

        • Callan
        • 21/06/2018
        Reply

        Great, thanks Annemarie :)

    • andy keny
    • 16/07/2018
    Reply

    Wanted a nice, small camera as I need high quality, clear pictures to do home inspections. This camera has provided that! Pictures always come out great and it is very simple to operate

    1. Reply

      Hi Andy, thanks for your feedback! That’s great to hear.

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