YouTube has more than 30 billion daily users watching videos. That simply proves that it is the place to be for anyone looking to get their film or videos distributed to the largest audience at no cost.
In fact, filming YouTube videos is now a proven career path and a good number of film enthusiasts like Casey Neistat are currently making a living on YouTube.
If you are reading this, you probably already know a Vlogger (a person who posts daily videos) or a YouTuber (someone who posts videos regularly) whose content you enjoy.
After all, it might be the main reason you are inspired to start your own Vlog, right? Well, if that’s the case, you will need the right camera gear for making YouTube videos.
Choosing a Good Camera for Filming YouTube Videos depends on your content
Frankly, there is no one gear that fits all in the land of YouTube. Choosing your camera depends mostly on the type of content you are looking to create.
A Beauty Vlogger, for instance, will need a camera that features excellent autofocus, sharp optics, and a decent audio recording ability.
A travel Vlogger might prefer portability and quality recording time in a camera for capturing the great outdoors.
A family Vlog, on the other hand, needs a rugged but portable camera. It has to be a great capable of withstanding the chaotic but fun, rustle and tumble that comes with kids being around.
The good news is that when it comes to filming for YouTube videos, you are simply spoilt for choice with options that that range from go pro adventure cameras to professional grade camcorders, point and shoot cameras or even your phone.
With that being said, I researched and reviewed some good cameras for filming YouTube videos and compiled the following list.
You can easily jump directly to the camera reviews below or scroll on for more information on how to pick the best camera for YouTube in 2018.
13 Best Camera’s For Filming YouTube Videos
- PANASONIC LUMIX FZ1000 4K
- Logitech C930
- Sony HDR CX 405
- Sony Handycam Camcorder HDRCX405
- Panasonic HC-V180K
- DJI Osmo +
- Canon T7i
- Canon 80D
- Panasonic Lumix F2 1000 4K
- Canon G7XMark II
- Canon 70D
- Sony Cyber RX100 VI
- Canon XA10
What are the different types of cameras that exist?
DSLR (Digital Single-Lens Reflex Camera)
In comparison to most cameras, DSLR cameras boast of the best battery life and the best manual controls. The reason is simple.
A DSLR camera captures images through light reflected on mirrors (for low-end models) and prisms (for high-end cameras).
From that, you end up with a gear that takes little power from the optical viewfinder. Basically, with a DSLR camera such as the Canon EOS Rebel T7i, you can get it to 600 shots before needing a recharge.
In addition, DSLRs are a favorite for videos and photographs as they give you the option of changing your lenses to get the precise output you are seeking.
You also get better control of the focus points, ISO and depth of field giving you creative license to explore different techniques.
The only deal breaker for these types of cameras is being bulky and heavy.
Point and Shoot Cameras
Away from the bulky comes the easily portable.
A point and shoot camera is simply a compact camera that is much smaller than a DSLR with fewer features of course.
However, do not be fooled, even with their small size they are still capable of high-resolution image capturing capacity.
In fact, some even offer the same manual controls you will find on a DSLR.
The best part about point and shoot cameras is the fact that they easily fit into your pocket making them perfect for daily vlogging.
While a DSLR comes with all the features and a point and shoot gives your portability, a mirrorless camera combines the best of both worlds to give you the best features for shooting YouTube videos in a compact body.
Basically, a mirrorless camera is more like a point and shoot that has interchangeable lenses, lightweight build and all the other bells and whistles you would find on a DSLR.
The term mirrorless comes from the fact that these cameras, unlike DSLRs, do not have mechanical mirrors.
If you are going to focus strictly on videos, these are the type of camera you should go for.
They are lightweight, quite portable and are mostly built for long hours of video recording.
Camcorders have come a mighty long way from the days when your recordings would be stored on a video tape cassette.
Nowadays, camcorders cannot only record in a variety of formats including MP4 but they also come with a flip screen that makes it easy for a one man or woman YouTube show.
If you are looking to create a channel about skydiving, underwater adventures or action-packed videos, you will need an action cam.
Basically, these are built to withstand any hash shooting condition.
They come with straps and suction cups that make it easy to stick anywhere for an immersive first-person perspective.
Plus, thanks to their small size, and a variety of amazing features, you can get high-quality video recording on a durable device that makes it easy to create amazing videos.
Drones have become quite popular among vloggers especially with top YouTubers like Casey Neistat further popularizing the trend.
With a drone, you not only get to have fun flying your drone, but you also get to capture aerial views that were only achievable with big budget movie projects a decade ago.
Nowadays, you don’t even have to worry about the technical side of flying a drone as you can easily use your Smartphone with most of the new models.
In fact, some drone designs even feature detachable cameras and 4K video recording capacity.
Check out some of the latest brands here.
Believe it or not, you can build a Youtube empire with your phone.
In fact, some of the biggest channels on YouTube started out with a camera that was less powerful than the one on your Smartphone.
That’s right; your phone’s camera is a powerful vlogging tool all on its own.
A Smartphone pretty much makes up the whole package as it also features powerful audio recording as well.
Furthermore, you can add a couple of accessories to your phone’s camera to match up to the quality of a standalone camera.
Check out an article I wrote on some of the best accessories for filming with your Smartphone.
Popular cameras used by top Youtubers and Vloggers
Here are some of the top YouTubers and their choice of camera. It can help you make a final decision.
- Casey Neistat : With close to 10 million subscriptions on his channel, Casey uses the Canon 80D with a wide angle lens and a long lens.
- Zoella : She is a beauty and makeup Vlogger with over 10 million subs and she uses the Canon 70D
- MarkE Miller: He is a lifestyle Vlogger with over 100 million total views on his channel and uses the Canon Powershot G7X
- iJustine: With close to 5 million subs, iJustine uses the Canon Powershot G7X as workhouse on her travel and tech vlogs
- MarzBar : He uses the Sony a75 and he is a tech and adventure Youtuber with over 40 million total views
YouTube Cameras that you can buy on a budget under $500
GoPro HERO4 Silver – Best Action Cam
Thanks to its fantastic build quality and compact design, the GoPro HERO4 has become one of the best cameras for filming YouTube videos.
Mostly used in outdoor and adventure vlogging, this camera features a wide-angle lens, shock and water resistance, and a durable build that will tough it out no matter the conditions.
Simply put, it’s the ultimate camera for travel and adventure vloggers.
The only downside is that you do not get the luxury of adjusting lenses or having a variety of manual features as it is a small action cam.
However, it gives you value for your money with its 4K video recording capacity at 30 frames per second.
You also get a sturdy mounting system that you can be used as a dashboard camera in your car.
This camera also lets you take photos at the same time you are shooting videos at 30 shots per second.
Even though you cannot enjoy zooming or viewing your videos, this camera is an affordable option for adventure enthusiasts.
- Quality color detail
- Easy to control over Wi-Fi or with an app
- Compatible with a variety of cases and mounts
- The casing muffles the audio
You can also check out other cameras from GoPro if you want an alternative from the HERO4.
Here is a Video sample of what you should expect
Logitech C930e – Best Option for steaming Youtube Videos
If all you want is a simple webcam that will help you create a presentable live stream YouTube videos or online courses for your students, go with Logitech. This Switzerland based company has a long history of providing personal computers and mobile accessories plus it has been around since 1981.
With the Logitech C930e, you not only get a chunky quality webcam that is easy to control but you also get an enterprise-focused camera with a wide field of view.
Easy to use, the arm on this webcam easily sticks at the top of your laptop and adjusts to get your perfect look.
The best part is that you get sound and 1080p HD YouTube video recording capacity at an extremely affordable budget under $100.
It’s the go-to camera for those looking to stream live YouTube videos.
However, at its price range, it’s hard to complain much about its quality but the Logitech C930e compromises on the software side.
You will have to find your own software to connect the webcam with your computer. This can be a deal breaker especially if you are a beginner.
- Wide field of view
- Capable of noise cancellation while shooting
- The package does not include software for capturing videos.
Sony HD Video Recording HDRCX405 Handycam Camcorder
Although the Sony Handycam Camcorder HDRCX405 is not known for its sophistication, one of its most outstanding features is its ease of use. To get started you simply flip the screen and its show time.
If you are looking for a basic camcorder that lets you record full 1080p high definition YouTube videos, the Sony Handycam HDR-CX 405 is a smart choice.
It is extremely light, weighing about 3.8 pounds and features a rotating LCD screen that is ideal for anyone looking to Vlog while also having an easy time composing and framing shots.
Built for the absolute beginner, this camcorder simplifies the filming process down to the basics.
You only have to flip the LCD screen and you will be ready to start shooting.
However, although it claims a 1080p full HD video recording capacity, you will need Sony’s M2 Memory card to support the full HD feature.
To some, it might seem cheap and fragile, but a beginner will love its portability, compact design, and affordable price tag.
- Worth the price
- Come in a kit with extra accessories
- Easy to shoot with for absolute beginners
- Great audio recording quality
- Lightweight and easily portable
- Quality zoom
- Comes with a manual lens cover that can be frustrating while shooting
- Small controls for some users
- Requires an M2 memory card to record 1080p videos
Canon Vixia HF R72 – Best Affordable Camcorder for Youtube
It goes without saying that Canon is the yardstick of the camera making industry. Just take a look at the Canon HF R72; it shoots 1080 p video quality at 60 frames per second. This camcorder is without a doubt one of Canon’s most budget-friendly options yet it still provides the versatility you would expect in an entry-level camcorder.
Among its features is a 32X zoom and a 32 GB storage that lets you record long YouTube videos that last up to 12 hours long.
Furthermore, it boasts of both Wi-Fi and NFC capabilities that make sharing and transferring of your videos much easier.
Granted, the image quality of the R72 pales in comparison with the likes of the Panasonic HC-X920, however; at its price range, it delivers a reliable zoom capacity that makes it worth the price.
If you only need a simple camcorder to kick off your YouTube channel this one here is a reliable pick.
- Large storage for recording long videos
- Reliable zoom feature
- Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity
- Flip screen
- 1-year warranty
- Lacks a viewfinder
Panasonic claims to focus on improving people’s lives. Well, when it comes to digital cameras, they not only provide the best in terms of professional gear but they also have affordable options that make life easy for beginner film and video creators on YouTube.
A case in point is the Panasonic HC-V180K. This camcorder is built to last your entire shooting session.
Sure, it’s a camera that struggles to produce clear videos in low light and you can
get much better quality with a Smartphone camera or other alternatives.
But, hardly will you find a Smartphone camera (at its price range) capable of matching up to the 59X zoom of the Panasonic HC-V180K.
For ease of control, you also get a touch screen 2.7” LCD display not to mention the 2 channel zoom internal mic for clear audio recording.
With a 5-axis image stabilizer and a super long zoom, this camera is a no-brainer for travel and adventure Vloggers on a low budget.
- Boasts a 59X optical zoom for tight headshots at 200ft
- Long lasting battery
- Affordable pricing
- Does not come with a carrying case
- Low-quality touch screen
If you are looking to create fun time-lapse and panoramic looking YouTube videos with accurate colors and fewer frustrations from trying to stabilize footage in post-production, getting your hands on the DJI Osmo+ will be a smart move.
To get it up and running you simply connect its Wi-Fi with your phone or mobile device and you are ready to use the connectivity it offers to take amazingly smooth shots.
The DJI Osmo + is easy to set up and shoots in 4K, however, if you are looking to shoot fast action scenes that require little or no preparation, this is not the camera for you.
You might experience some frustrations establishing a Wi-Fi connection between the camera and the phone while shooting a fast-paced event.
However, with a little getting used to, you can plan your shoots in time and update the app on your phone or tablet.
Although the DJI OSMO + is not the best for shooting long videos on YouTube, it is built like a gimbaled camera that gives you professional looking 3 axis stabilization.
Additionally, it boasts of a 4K recording capacity with a 3.5X optical zoom plus a 2X digital zoom giving you a total of 7X zoom for creativity while recording.
This camera gear is decent for anyone looking to come up with professional looking B-roll footage for their vlogs or YouTube music videos.
- 4K image quality
- Steady and smooth footage
- Easy to use
- The app might freeze when the camera is in sleep mode
- Some users had issues with the fast pan of the joystick
- Weak battery
Best Cameras for filming YouTube videos under $1000
After the Canon T6i had its day in the sun, it was almost obvious that an update was on the cards. Certainly, the T7i is no disappointment. If you are anywhere outside the US, you might know the T7i as the Canon EOS 800D.
This camera has become a favorite among new and experienced use
rs as it features a simplified skin not to mention a default guiding systems that make it pretty easy to use.
The Canon T7i proves to be the ultimate choice for a family Vlog.
The reason is simple.
It comes with a 3 inch fully articulated touch screen that is complemented with an auto mode for easy shooting of both videos and pictures.
At 24 megapixels and Canon’s APS C sensor with dual pixel design, the T7i can track subjects around the frame which is perfect especially if you want to set it up to follow the first steps of your child.
Thanks to an autofocus feature, you can easily tap on the screen to focus on a subject without ruining stability while hunting for a point of focus.
Even though it does not offer 4K shooting like most of its rivals, this camera offers user’s room to grow as you can easily purchase an advanced lens and enjoy functionality that pros use.
- Dual pixel AF for fast performance
- Viewfinder available
- Easy to use even for total beginners
- Lacks 4K shooting capacity
Canon EOS 80D
The Canon 80 D is a perfect fit for both beginners and advanced videographers.
Its Built from the excellent foundation laid by the Canon 70 D’s Dual Pixel CMOS AF technology making the 80 D a massive improvement with stunning low light image quality not to mention an articulating touchscreen that gives you all the control you need to make professional grade videos for YouTube.
With a mirror vibration control system similar to what you will find with Canon’s higher-end DSLRs the 80 D is capable of reducing blur caused by the shutter shock for high-speed continuous shooting.
The camera boasts of versatility with its autofocus feature all thanks to a rugged body design to give you dust and moisture resistance for durability.
The only downside is that it does not shoot in 4K at its price range. However, it shoots videos at 1080p resolution even with continuous autofocus mode switched on which is great.
Anyone looking for a perfect blend of professional utility and an entry-level DSLR will love what the 80D has to offer.
It allows enthusiasts to continuously shoot at 7 frames per second making it an ideal camera for fast action projects. You can easily make this your daily workhorse and be sure to use for hours of shooting.
- Professional image quality with impressive ISO
- Fast autofocus thanks to the Dual Pixel CMOS sensor
- Comes with a headphone jack for monitoring audio
- Reliable battery
- It doesn’t produce 4K footage
PANASONIC LUMIX FZ1000 4K
The Panasonic FZ1000 is built to be a bridge camera that delivers a relatively smaller sensor when compared to mirrorless cameras and DSLRs. However, it still provides a versatile alternative for those looking for the best camera for filming YouTube videos.
This camera is built for performance with a 4K HD resolution and a super fast LUMIX DFD focusing capacity.
It also features a much larger sensor compared to other Panasonic models giving it a huge advantage.
However, the manual focus on this camera is a tad bit awkward and noisy but the autofocus compensates for this as it is faster not to mention a decent digital zoom even for those who have an aversion towards digital zooms.
It also comes with a fully articulating screen that is ideal for shooting in awkward angles or composing your frames and shots for YouTube videos.
If you are a Vlogger or a beginner Youtuber looking to produce quality 4K YouTube videos, this camera is right for you as it releases you of the need to deal with clutter from multiple wire connections with its WIFI enabled controls.
Basically, you can use your Smartphone to compose your shots which is great.
At its price range, the PANASONIC LUMIX FZ1000 4K has no competition and for a good reason.
It offers top-tier features that are simply hard to find for a camera in its category.
Certainly there are some good alternatives such as the Nikon D3300, however, even with a DSLR that is cheaper and with interchangeable lenses, spending an extra $100 is totally worth it if you are in the look for a bridge camera that is convenient and less cumbersome such as the FZ1000.
- Compared to its competitors it has a larger sensor
- Delivers quality 4K videos quality
- Fast autofocus
- Wi-Fi remote connectivity
- Firm grip
- A clunky manual focus ring
- A bit of a cheap looking build
Canon G7x Mark II
As one of Canon’s premium range point and shoot camera’s this camera is capable of going pound for pound against any large DSRL or CSC cameras in terms of quality.
With a design that is fit for the film enthusiast looking for utility, this camera gives you a firm and snugly grip that is quite useful especially if you plan to Vlog with it on a daily basis or shoot videos on the go.
Thanks to the fact that all the buttons are on the right-hand side, you get easy access for speedy adjustments.
The camera also features a manual control such as the control ring around the lens that let you adjust the aperture, the shutter speed as well as the ISO smoothly.
Basically, this camera is built for any videographer looking for a decent replacement for their bigger DSLR gear.
With a 24-100mm lens, it produces sharp F1.8 footages although I noticed some slight delay when trying to focus two objects about 3 feet apart.
Plus it also lacks a viewfinder which can be a deal breaker for some.
However, if you love shooting raw footages with more manual control, the G7X Mark II is for you.
It gives you easy access to settings, has a built-in flash and a hot shoe for attaching a short gun microphone making it the ideal camera for a Youtuber.
However, if you are a pro video creator or filmmaking enthusiasts in need of a classic 40X zoom camera, this camera is not for you. It features a shorter lens that only gives you a paltry 4.2X zoom that works great mostly for vlogging and short daily videos.
The upside to this is that it can provide a decent depth of field that is great for shooting in low light with a wide open aperture.
At its price range, the Canon G7 X Mark II is decently cut for making YouTube videos. Furthermore, with its screen that tilts to fit shooting at awkward angles not to mention a touch screen for fast focus, this camera can help you capture self-portraits easily.
- Easy to use manual controls
- Touch screen control
- Comes with a large sensor ideal for low light shooting
- Takes time to macro focus
- Lacks a viewfinder
- Offers a short zoom
Canon 70D – Best Choice for Beauty Vloggers
If you are camera enthusiasts looking to either upgrade or simply get gear that allows you more control, the Canon EOS 70D is a perfect match. Even though attention might have shifted to the much recent EOS 80D model, the EOS 70D has not lost its appeal. In fact, you can pick it up for much less which is great.
As usual, it comes with an APS –C CMOS sensor with up to 20.2MP.
Thanks to its dual pixel CMOS sensor, you get faster focusing while recording videos making it a perfect pick for anyone with a beauty channel.
Plus the EOS 70 D is capable of shooting 1080p resolution at 7 frames per second which is great for fast-paced action and adventure vlogging as well.
Adjusting settings and functionality is a piece of cake on this camera as it comes with a fully articulating touch screen not to mention physical controls that you would expect in a professional DSRL camera.
- Articulating touch screen
- Built-in flash
- Quality video recording even in low light
- Minimal fingerprints on touchscreen thanks to a special coating
- Excellent autofocus
- Wi-Fi enabled
- Battery life can be disappointing
- Wi-Fi setup can be complicated
Sony Cyber-shot RX100 VI
If all you need is a compact digital camera that you can easily slip into the back of your pockets after using it without compromising on the quality of your videos, the Sony RX100 VI line is made up of amazing capabilities.
One of its most outstanding features is its capacity to shoot 4K videos.
In fact, when compared to other pocket-sized cameras, the Sony RX 100 VI is not only a great update from its predecessors but also a solid pick at any level of your filmmaking journey.
First of all, it features a much longer zoom range when compared to its predecessors leave alone other point and shoots.
As a result, it boasts of much more versatility when shooting videos for YouTube.
You can make the most of it while vlogging and even while moving around. This camera will deliver a stable looking footage thanks to its Optical Steady Shot Image Stabilization system.
In fact, the RX 100 VI gives you a staggering 24 fps shooting speed extending its buffer even while shooting with AF and auto exposure. That simply means it’s the best point and shoot camera you’ll get for epic slow-motion videos.
Plus, as one of the first in Sony’s RX 100 line to get a touchscreen option, you get the touch for focusing and adjusting shutter speed for that slow-motion effect on your videos. Its ISO performance is also pretty good and you will only note grainy footage when you go above ISO 1800.
However, the only downside to this camera is the fact that it doesn’t feature an external microphone port which can be essential for your YouTube Vlogging process.
- Ability to shoot in 4K
- Reliable AF system
- Portable compact build
- Tilt screen to 90 degrees
- HDR compatible
- Card slot only supports UHS-I
- A bit pricey when compared to its rivals
- Does not have a microphone port
The Canon XA10 is relatively small compared to other professional camcorders in its range. It packs up a bunch of useful features and an impressive image quality that is simply a must for any anyone looking for a professional quality camcorder.
Even with its small compact design, this camera still gives you professional-level quality with its 1/3-inch CMOS image sensor that records AVCHD codec of up to 24 Mbps.
With both progressive and native frame rates, you get more options for flexible shooting both for a professional film look as well as for YouTube.
This camera delivers more utility with its touch focus LCD display for the ultimate gorilla filmmaker.
Who it’s for
Well, if all you need is a vlogging camera, this one is not for you.
Don’t let its fairly compact small size fool you. Its lightweight body lends it easy to camera shakes especially if you don’t have a tripod.
Plus it’s mostly suited for a studio set up or documentary films.
However, if you are planning to set it up in your homemade video studio for that professional quality video output, or plan to shoot short films and learn as you go, then you better grab it.
It boasts of useful features such as the XLR audio inputs that are perfect for shooting on-set interviews and documentaries. Just watch out for its battery as it needs upgrading.
- Comes with a detachable handle
- Convenient XLR audio MIC inputs and mount
- A compact and portable body design
- Ideal for professional both advanced and beginner level
- Doesn’t come with interchangeable lenses
- Not fit for everyday vlogging on the move
Other types of gear you might need for filming YouTube videos
As much as we would all want the process of creating YouTube videos to be as simple as picking the right camera and uploading awesome content, the reality is totally different.
Getting the perfect camera for beautiful videos on YouTube is just the start of producing great content for your YouTube channel. You need great sound as well.
What about the internal Microphones that comes with the camera? Well, the internal microphone in your camera just doesn’t cut it.
In fact, if you are planning to take your vlogging seriously, you will realize just how terrible camera microphones can be.
With that in mind, I review a couple of options that will help you pick out from inexpensive options for quality audio recording.
Basically, these are some of your main options when it comes to recording audio:
Nowadays, if you want to tell your story, YouTube provides one of the most interesting platforms to do just that.
In fact, you can create a full-time income from vlogging and have fun with friends and family as you make awesome videos for your YouTube audience. It all starts with picking up a good camera for recording YouTube videos.
Pick from our selection of cameras no matter your budget and you will not be disappointed.