Best Cheap Cameras for YouTube 2019 (Under $100)

Reviews

YouTube videos are getting better and better. While content is still the most important, viewers are now more demanding with the quality of the videos. It all starts with a good camera. But unlike with other types of video recording, YouTube videos require plenty of creativity and a camera which can be handled with ease. Most YouTubers take their cameras with them wherever they go. A compact camera is suitable for filming in these conditions.

Features to consider in Cheap Cameras for YouTube

Finding the best cheap camera is not too complicated, as long as users understand the basics of video recording. Good light is a must, even for the most expensive cameras. A proper sensor can be helpful both in good light and in low light. Intuitive settings are important at least as much as the video quality.

Sensor size
The sensor can be the most expensive part of a camera for YouTube. It is also responsible for image quality. If there is one place to begin searching for the best cheap camera, the sensor is that place.

Settings and configuration
Most YouTube cameras are easy to operate. However, it is important to see that intuitive buttons make the life of the user simple. But the intuitive characteristics can also include the design. It is often the case that YouTubers need to film themselves, which might prove difficult without a swivel screen.

Video quality
The video quality can vary. Some of the best cameras offer 720p, 1080p, and even HD video recording quality. But not all vloggers need the highest video quality. This should actually be determined according to the type of content to be recorded. The following compacts are a selection of the best cheap cameras for YouTuber under $100.

Top 10 Best Cheap Cameras for YouTube 2019 (Under $100)

1. Sony DSCW800 Digital Camera

Why we like it: With a powerful 21MP sensor, a camera is a leading option for those seeking practicality at an affordable price.

Editor’s Rating:

Design features
Asa compact camera, it represents a practical solution for YouTube content. While it can be used to record videos indoors, it also fits into the jacket’s pocket for outdoor filming. It is lightweight which means those carrying it around and holding it for long hours will love it even more.

There are only a few buttons on the camera. Menu navigation rockers and a separate video recording button are found on the back of the camera, next to the digital display.

Convenient features
The biggest strength of the popular camera is its 21MP sensor. It is more capable than most alternatives. This HAD CCD sensor is can offer detailed images and it can take photos and record videos. The video quality is 720p. It may not be the highest video quality for the video platform, but it is enough for most new users on YouTube.

The standard lens is not bad either. It comes with SteadyShot image stabilization. The result of this technology is that all pictures come with reduced blur as the shakiness of the hands is controlled better. The lens offers a standard 5X zoom, which is enough to offer close portraits when shooting indoors.

Other convenient controls come with the Simplify menu. The menu is a simpler version which is specifically made to get users shooting as soon as possible, with little interferences. For the moments when users want to capture stills for their YouTube pictograms, they can also use the built-in flash to add more light to the subject.

Verdict
This capable compact camera is easy to use and it is based on a powerful sensor.

Pros
  • Made with a compact size
  • Based on a 12MP sensor
  • Included SteadyShot image stabilization
  • Designed with the Simplify camera menu
Cons
  • Demanding on the batteries

2. Nikon COOLPIX L32 Digital Camera

Why we like it: With Nikon quality, the digital camera is suitable for recording vlogs both indoors and indoors.

Editor’s Rating:

Design features
The compact camera is one of the polished options on offer. Apart from having capable video recording qualities, the camera has a large 3-inch LCD screen which can be used for real-time images. The screen can also be used for playback purposes.

The controls are limited in number on the camera. This means that all users can simply start shooting without complicated settings, which is great when starting a new YouTube channel. A timer function button has also been included by Nikon. On the right side of the camera, the manufacturer added the recording button. This practical placement means users can reach the button and hold the camera with a single hand. For vlogging purposes, this proves useful.

There is a 5x zoom lens on the camera. Interestingly, it works great with the technologies employed in the camera for portraiture work. It is why the camera features a Smart Portrait System which keeps the users in focus. This system is suitable for explanatory videos and even for vlogging.

Convenient features
Powered by AA batteries, the camera fits most pockets. But most importantly, it offers 720p HD video recording quality. For the online world, this is more than enough to get started. Most users will watch videos in an even lower resolution due to loading speed limitations.

Other useful features can make this camera an all-in-one solution. It comes with face recognition software which tells the lens where to keep its focus points. Another interesting feature integrates stills. The compact camera can trigger a photo when subjects are smiling, making it useful when photographing kids.

Verdict
With 720p HD video quality and automatic face recognition, the camera is suitable for moving subjects and YouTube work.

Pros
  • Recording button is easy to access
  • Made with automatic face recognition
  • Designed with a 3” digital display
  • Good low light performance
Cons
  • No USB cable

3. Canon PowerShot A2300 16.0 MP Digital Camera

Why we like it: The 16MP camera has a modern Digic 4 processor to offer a responsive experience.

Editor’s Rating:

Design features
Canon is a top player in the camera world. The PowerShot A23000 is one of the most successful products from the manufacturer. Solidly built, the camera can be mounted on a tripod but it can also be hand-held or placed on a desk when shooting videos at home.

Those new to video recordings can find this camera particularly useful due to its help button. The button provides fast explanations to some of the functions of the camera, which can only make it a viable option for beginners. Every function is instantly detailed on the screen.

There is a large 2.7in TFT display on the back of the camera. It is the only option to view the subject in the absence of a viewfinder. But the colorful screen offers a realistic interpretation of how the images will look when transferred to a computer.

Canon also added IS technology to the camera. Image stabilization is needed when looking for the sharpest images. This characteristic is specifically useful when tracking fast-moving subjects. But the stabilization can also reduce the negative effects of hand shakiness.

Convenient features
There is a 16MP sensor inside the camera. It is able to record 720p HD videos. These videos are directly stored on the SD card which fits the camera. The memory card can then be used to transfer the videos.

With Smart Auto technology, the camera also makes quick shooting assessments. It looks at the number of subjects and the background to establish the best automatic functions for the best image quality. There are 32 preset profiles the camera chooses from following these quick readings. This also includes subject-detection profiles. These features allow the camera to recognize and lock the focus on a particular subject. When shooting videos for YouTube in a crowded space, this proves to be a useful characteristic.

Verdict
With a versatile 16MP sensor and a dedicated help button, the camera is suitable for those new to YouTube.

Pros
  • Made with a dedicated help button
  • Built-in TFT display
  • Powered by regular AA batteries
  • Included Smart Auto fast auto adjustments
Cons
  • Doesn’t ship with a wrist wrap

4. YI 4K Action and Sports Camera

Why we like it: Action cameras are often the best solution for sports-orientated YouTube channels.

Editor’s Rating:

Design features
The affordable 4K action cameras, the YI represents an interesting choice by today’s standards. Filming cycling sessions, gym sessions, Crossfit sessions, swimming or even running is possible with this small camera. It has wide usability and video quality which recommends it for publishable images.

The compact camera even comes with an intuitive touchscreen display. This allows it to be used in various scenarios. Most importantly, it saves times setting its adjustments, which is crucial for action recording. Those fearing the durability of the screen need to know that it’s actually based on Gorilla glass, which is resistant to scratches.

Convenient features
With multiple video recording options to select from, the digital action camera is versatile. At its highest quality, it records 4K videos. But it can also record lower resolution at 720p. A 12MP sensor is used for this image quality.

A few advanced functions can also make this camera suitable for hiking, skiing or even vlogging. It comes with a time-lapse function, a slow-motion mode perfect for added effects, a timer and a burst mode for taking quick sequential pictures.

At its highest image quality, the camera records up to 120 minutes. The good news is that the small video files can be quickly transmitted to a laptop or the smartphone. It is why the camera comes with the YI official app which allows WiFi communication. With download speeds of up to 30Mb, receiving the files should not take too long.

Verdict
The compact 4K action camera is affordable for its long list of features.

Pros
  • Shoots 4K videos
  • Comes with a touchscreen
  • Integrated WiFi technology
  • Resists scratches
Cons
  • The app can be improved

5. Kodak PIXPRO FZ53-RD Digital Camera

Why we like it: The Kodak camera is suitable for point-and-shoot video recording.

Editor’s Rating:

Design features
The simple Kodak PIXPRO camera is suitable for YouTube video recording. It offers a simple design which works great when it comes to practicality. It has a distinct video recording button on the top, next to the power button. This separate rocker is responsible for HD video recording.

The attractive and slim design of the camera allows its users to simply slide it in the back pocket to have at hand when needed. It also means the camera is capable to offer improved practicality in different locations, making it perfect for travel vloggers.

While the lens expands when zooming in, they also collapse back inside the camera body when not in use. The design of the lens doesn’t limit the practicality of the camera as a result. The 28mm lens is suitable for portraiture as well as for landscape images.

Convenient features
There is a 16MP sensor on the camera shooting at 720p HD video quality. It allows all users to enjoy quality images. The 28mm wide lens works great with the sensor, as it can be seen on the sharp images. With 5X zoom, the camera also allows users to get closer to their subjects without actually moving too much. As a result, the camera can be used in areas when getting closer to the subject is not possible.

Powered by a single battery, the camera is truly capable. Instead of using 2 batteries as most cameras, it offers a more lightweight alternative for most users. It is why it has been named among the traveling options from Kodak.

With a distinct 2.7” LCD screen, the camera also allows users to quickly check their images on the spot. At the same time, the camera can take low light pictures. Its low light capacities are enhanced by the built-in flash which eliminates the need for external flashes.

Verdict
The compact camera is quick to use and it can be an option for travel YouTubers as well as for those who take their camera with them as much as possible.

Pros
  • Based on a 16MP sensor
  • Included LCD display
  • Designed with a compact slim body
  • Configurable auto detection
Cons
  • Not the fastest focus on close subjects

6. Nikon CoolPix A10

Why we like it: Powered by rechargeable batteries, the camera can be used to save money, especially by those new to video production.

Editor’s Rating:

Design features
There are many types of compact cameras Nikon has to offer. But the CoolPix A10 is one of the simple solutions judging by its money-saving profile. For this purpose, the camera even comes with rechargeable batteries. Instead of always purchasing AA batteries as with most cameras, this can be a practical solution. But users still need to remember to bring their camera charger when going away from home.

Most settings are automatically adjusted by the camera, as expected in this price range. But this is not a bad characteristic as vloggers can simply focus on their content instead. Most bloggers even look for simple solutions when coming back from complicated video equipment, especially when posting often.

The simple and practical approach can also be seen in the button layout on top and on the back of the camera. Luckily, the video recording button is placed exactly on the edge of the camera, on its backside. This means it can be accessed with the thumb while holding the camera. This is what YouTubers need as camera practicality can never be undervalued.

Convenient features
With a 16.1MP sensor, the camera can record 720p HD videos. It can also take photos at a resolution of 4.608 X 3.456. The compact camera is suitable for videos and photos, making it a versatile tool to can power a new YouTube channel.

There are 15 scenes includes for users to consider. These scenes are suitable for recording on beaches, on snow, at night, at sunset, etc. All of these conditions are characterized by different light and different background. The good news is that the camera can actually select one of these shooting modes for the users to simplify recordings as much as possible.

Another interesting feature comes with the half-press focus. Pressing the shutter button halfway means users can put their subjects in focus quickly. While it takes some practice to get used to, it might be a top functionality when used properly for fast focus.

Verdict
The compact camera is powered by rechargeable batteries making it suitable for daily recording.

Pros
  • Based on a 16.1MP sensor
  • Records 720p HD videos
  • Powered by rechargeable batteries
  • Fast focus
Cons
  • SD memory card not included

7. Comi Tech Vlogging Camera

Why we like it: With an included flip screen, this compact camera is suitable for vlogging and YouTube videos.

Editor’s Rating:

Design features
There are not too many cheap cameras for YouTube with a flip screen. It is why the Comi Tech camera can be a valuable tool in the right hands. Eliminating the needs of a selfie stick, tripods, and other extension options, the camera allows users to film themselves hand-held. At the same time, it can still be placed on a tripod where users can see themselves on the flip screen during the actual recording time.

But even with a flip screen, the camera is still able to come with basic rockers. Zoom in and zoom out buttons are added on the back of the camera. A picture/video mode selector is also added next to the playback button. There is no direct viewfinder on the camera and all photos and videos are viewed on the screen.

Convenient features
The camera can record had videos at 1080p and 720p at a frame rate of 30 fps. A few other settings include a personalized white balance. Included options are the auto white balance, incandescent light white balance, cloudy conditions white balance and daylight white balance. This can be set according to each situation to find the right white color in each scenario.

With an included flash, the camera can also shoot photos in low light conditions. Of course, being small in size, the flash is suitable for close subjects. But at the same time, it may work well in most indoor spaces.

Supporting external memory cards, the cameras is suitable for travel as is takes up to 32Gb in memory card capacity. With SDHC compatibility, the camera offers features seen in mid-class cameras at an affordable price.

Verdict
With a flip screen, a built-in stabilizer, ISO 400 and WiFi support, the camera is one of the well-equipped solutions for vlogging.

Pros
  • Packed with modern features
  • Supports HD video recording
  • Included flip screen
  • WiFi-enabled data transfer
Cons
  • Memory card sold separately

8. Kodak PIXPRO Friendly Zoom FZ43-RD

Why we like it: The little brother of the FZ53-RD, the Kodak PIXPRO FZ43-RD offers similar performance for a lower price.

Editor’s Rating:

Design features
There are not many features users have to say goodbye to compared to the Kodak FZ53-RD. In fact, the biggest difference is only in the zoom capacity. The camera is limited to 4X zoom instead of 5X zoom. The sensor is the same and this means the difference cannot be really recognized by most users. At the same time, many users would simply struggle to tell the cameras apart physically.

It is why Kodak used the same principles of quality products for these cameras as well. YouTubers can rest assured the camera works to a high standard as it comes with the same compact size. It is perfect for travel purposes but it also works great as a second camera.

The button layout remains simple and intuitive. There is a separate rocker for video recording. All other physical characteristics including USB compatibility are still present in this affordable camera. Even the 2.7” screen would not indicate that this is a budget camera.

Convenient features
Most importantly, the camera can shoot HD videos. These videos are recorded at 720p quality. For online use, the video quality is more than enough, as most users even view videos as a much lower resolution.

There is a 4X zoom on the camera as well. While it is not the most capable zoom range in its class, it still brings subjects closer. For using indoors, it might be more than enough. The real limitations are seen outdoors with subjects such as animals or people at a distance.

The sensor is the same 16MP release seen from Kodak. It produces sharp images and the automated functions in the camera also mean that the compact device does most of the work, leaving the user the ability to concentrate on proper content.

Verdict
With a compact size, a proven sensor and sharp images, the camera is reliable if the zoom range is not a priority.

Pros
  • Made with a compact design
  • Connects via USB
  • Based on a Kodak 16MP sensor
  • Records 720p HD video
Cons
  • Limited zoom range

9. Kicteck Vlogging Camera

Why we like it: With a 24MP sensor and a swivel screen, the camera can be a reliable option for quick HD video recording.

Editor’s Rating:

Design features
Even if it comes with an old-school design, the camera is still one of the better options on paper. Its design can be limiting, especially when it comes to self-recording. But if not hand-held, this type of recording can still be done by placing the camera on a tripod.

Furthermore, the camera can still be used to record other subjects and other scenes to a high level of detail. With an intuitive menu, the device is not hard to navigate. One of its distinct design characteristics comes with the practical zoom button, which is only seen on these types of cameras and which can be smoother when controlled properly compared to the zoom on compact cameras.

The camera records all the images on memory cards. It recognized SD memory cards of up to 32GB. This means that once a recording session is over, the camera can simply be put aside while the memory card is connected to a laptop for image transfer.

Convenient features
One of the convenient features of the camera is its design which comes with a strap. Practically, the camera is very difficult to drop. This makes it suitable for certain action recording situations. But most importantly, the 1080p video recording capacity of the camera is impressive. It sits on the 24MP CMOS sensor which is already a better sensor than most compacts can offer.

An interesting feature comes with the pause function. Practically, it is the only camera in the budget which allows users to pause the recording. When resuming, the file is still uninterrupted which makes the life of YouTube users easier.

Verdict
With a capable sensor, the camera is one of the suitable options when the megapixel count is important.

Pros
  • Made with a swivel screen
  • Based on a 24MP CMOS sensor
  • Supports a pause function
  • Ergonomic design
Cons
  • Not the most compact solution

10. AbergBest HD Digital Camera

Why we like it: With a 550mAh battery, the compact camera is mainly suitable for those with small hands.

Editor’s Rating:

Design features
The compact camera is one of the smallest in its class. For some users, it may even be too small while others, like those with small hands, would find it useful. At the same time, the camera can also be among the options which are the easiest to work with on the long-term, since it comes with rechargeable batteries. The included batteries have a 550mAh capacity and it may well be just enough for short videos.

There is a large TFT display on the back of the camera which replaces the viewfinder. It also offers an instant playback solution. The side of the camera is where users can access their memory cards.

Convenient features
Fully capable of recording 720p HD videos, the compact camera is among the leading options for durability and it can even be a future-proof design. Not much more is needed to begin shooting YouTube videos.

It also includes additional features to make better videos. They include anti-shake, face-detect, smile capture, continuous shooting, and even a self-timer. The timer function is practical especially when YouTubers need to record or photograph themselves.

Verdict
The compact design is mainly suitable for users who need compact cameras backed by rechargeable batteries.

Pros
  • Most compact design in class
  • Built-in TFT display
  • Records videos at 720p
  • Anti-shake feature
Cons
  • Limited low light performance

FAQ

What is a compact camera?
A compact camera is a small camera with a fixed lens. It is an affordable type of camera known for its many automated functions.

Do I need a memory card?
Most cameras ship without a memory card. It is why users need to purchase their own memory card. However, not all cards support the same type of memory cards. It is why users should check compatibility before purchasing a memory card.

Does YouTube work with any camera?
All compact cameras record in familiar files which can be uploaded to YouTube.

Is there a way to improve the videos?
All recordings can be improved in post-production. Video editing software can be free or paid, according to its functions.

Can I use an external flash with a compact camera?
Most compact cameras do not support an external flash so recording in good light is a priority.

What does IS stand for?
IS or image stabilization refers to the technologies used by manufacturers to minimize the effect shaky hands have on the stability of the recordings.

Guide to Buying the Best Cheap Cameras for YouTube under $100

Choosing such an affordable camera is not too easy. New users are sometimes confused by complicated features and this is why the top manufacturers simplify these cameras as much as possible without sacrificing the quality of the result. For this reason, it is important to find the minimum requirements of a reliable cheap YouTube camera.

Image sensor and video quality
The image sensor remains the most important feature to consider, even with affordable cameras. Since there are not too many sensors to consider as they can be the same Sony sensors in many cameras, the options are simpler for the user to understand. But a large megapixel count is not necessarily a guarantee for better pictures. This is why it’s actually worth choosing the products which are easy to work with from the start and these are those who also add great features on a good image sensor.

From 16MP to 24MP, the cameras above come with different megapixels. An unwritten rule states that the large the sensor, the better the pictures. But this is not always the case, especially with many compact cameras where space is limited already. The standard lens can also dramatically improve the quality of the recordings so users should also take a quick look at the lens their camera comes with.

With video recording capacity from 720p, 1080p, and even 4K on some action cameras, this price range offers multiple options. It is hard to establish which is actually better as the highest resolution is not always necessary. In many cases, a mid-way option is enough for most types of video content. Of course, the more artistic the content is, the more focus is placed on the image quality.

But in too many cases, YouTubers focus on video quality instead of first focusing on the content itself. Growing is mandatory regardless of the camera, but most users have too many unused features in their cameras anyway. It is also important to correlate higher quality recordings with the increased post-processing time and even with the increased data transfer time.

Size and ergonomics
Maybe more than in any other category, the size of the camera can dictate if users will buy it or not. This is due to the fact the YouTube requires all types of recordings usually. One day users could be recording inside the house while another day they might embark on a traveling adventure. This is why compact cameras are often the best. Compact cameras are also easy to hold. This is why it’s important to find the best route towards hand-held image recording, as this is the most practical most of the times.

A large camera might come with better image quality, but it also comes with extra weight. Vloggers don’t really like them as a result. But since cheap cameras mostly come in a small size, this can only be seen an extra advantage by YouTubers.

Users can go even further and seek options which have practical rockers. It is why, even in this affordable category, users might still be able to find products with practical designs and record buttons which can be reached with the same hand which holds the camera. This type of design is inspired by professional cameras, where the most important buttons are placed closer to the grip and the least important buttons further away.

Data transfer
Data transfer options are crucial in a world where information travels fast or it ceases to exist. YouTubbers know this best. It is often a race against time to copy all the data from the memory card and actually prepare it for uploading.

From wired USB options to memory cards and even to WiFi options, cameras differ from design to design. It is why most users should actually look for an option which suits them. If not on the road, a wireless option is not as needed as many users might think. However, those uploading from a smartphone might find WiFi highly advantageous.

Automatic features
From auto face detection to smile detection, automatic features can make cheap cameras better. Face detection is a must-have for modern cameras. It comes as a feature YouTubers can consider for their own benefit. Finding and locking the focus on a subject is crucial. It is among the most important characteristics when it comes to continuous filming. Instead of fighting for the right focus, this characteristic can make the problem smaller, even if it can’t complete laminate it.

A timer function can also be important. It is known that YouTube allows top channels to select their pictogram which can increase the click rate if done correctly. It is why these recording cameras can also be used for still photos. A timer function allows delayed shutter trigger, which can produce interesting results. From photographing themselves to creating different effects, the timer function is useful even in these cheap cameras.

Another interesting feature comes with image stabilization. There are two types of stabilization. Physical stabilization a digital stabilization can significantly reduce the shakiness of a camera. At the same time, the cameras may not completely eliminate shaky videos, but they can make the difference between a good video and the best video.

Conclusion

Some of the best cheap cameras for YouTube are now made to high standards. While their sensors are not the largest on the market, they offer plenty of features to start recording and getting the basics right. Together with good lighting and useful content, they can be the base of useful YouTube videos.

The only real choice apart from image sensor now remains in the battery system as these cameras still come with standard batteries alongside rechargeable batteries. In some cases, the first option is fine. In other cases, especially when filming constantly, it makes senses to prioritize a camera with rechargeable batteries. This is why it’s actually important to add this filter to the right product choice, as rechargeable batteries cameras are cheaper to run and friendlier to the environment.

Other potential purchases which need to be made alongside the camera comes with the memory card, which is not included with most cheap cameras. Memory cards are somewhat similar in nature and their capacity should be as high as the camera allows. This will enable users to record as long as possible without having to switch to secondary memory cards.