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Best cameras for vlogging 2020: 10 great choices for YouTubers

(Image credit: Future)

Choosing the best camera for vlogging is a bit harder than just picking a stills camera with great video quality. Factors like mic inputs, screen articulation and connectivity can all make a big difference, which is why we've rounded up this list of the best vlogging cameras you can buy today. 

Another factor to consider is size – the classic conundrum of portability versus performance – which is why we've included a variety of options here, from DSLRs to compacts and action cameras. 

If you’re a novice vlogger who's just starting out, your smartphone will probably be more than enough for your first few videos. But if you’re getting serious, a dedicated vlogging camera could make your videos stand out from the crowd – and which snapper you pick should reflect your style of shooting.

Something pocketable is perfect if you’re recording yourself daily, while a mirrorless camera or DSLR might be more appropriate if you're looking to boost your production values. If your audience loves action, you might want a recorder that’s a little more rugged like an action cam. The range is wide, so read on to find the perfect vlogging camera for you.

Best vlogging cameras 2020 at a glance:

  1. Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III
  2. Sony A6400
  3. Canon EOS M6 Mark II
  4. Panasonic Lumix G90/G95
  5. GoPro Hero 8 Black
  6. Canon EOS M50
  7. Canon EOS 90D
  8. Fujifilm X-T30
  9. DJI Osmo Pocket
  10. Sony Cyber-shot RX100 VII

(Image credit: Future)

Best vlogging cameras in 2020:

(Image credit: Future)

1. Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III

Uncropped 4K and a microphone socket - this pocket-rocket is the best-all round vlogging camera

Type: Compact | Sensor size: 1.0-type | Resolution: 20.1MP | Effective focal length: 24-100mm | Viewfinder: None | Monitor: 3.0-inch tilt-angle touchscreen | Connectivity: Wi-Fi, NFC | Max movie resolution: 4K | Size, weight: 105.5 x 60.9 x 41.4mm, 304g

Tilting touchscreen
Effective stabilization
Mic input
No viewfinder

Long popular with vloggers, Canon’s G7X range has kicked it up a notch with its latest implementation. There’s still a very capable 20.1 megapixel one-inch sensor, but now it’s also equipped with uncropped 4K video recording, and, something which had been requested many times, a microphone socket. 

That means you can elevate the sound above and beyond the internal mic’s offering, if you want to. Furthermore, the G7X III can stream directly to YouTube, so you can live vlog whatever’s happening around you, without having to downgrade to using your smartphone. USB charging is another great feature which means you can give it power bursts on the go - particularly prudent if you’ve been shooting a lot of 4K video. 

(Image credit: Future)

Sony Alpha A6400

(Image credit: Future)

2. Sony A6400

This feature-packed snapper is built for vloggers

Type: Mirrorless | Sensor size: APS-C CMOS | Resolution: 24.2MP | Effective focal length: N/A | Viewfinder: EVF, 2.36 million dots | Monitor: 3.0-inch tilt-angle touchscreen, 921,000 dots | Connectivity: Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth | Max movie resolution: 4K | Size, weight: 120 x 67 x 60mm, 403g

Superb autofocus
Bright viewfinder
Great video features
No in-body image stabilization

Sony’s Alpha cameras have long been popular with vloggers, and the A6400 is no exception. 4K is a given, while support for S-log3 and S-log2 should please post-producers. There’s 4K HDR (HLG) for instant playback and Sony’s Imaging Edge Mobile app makes it possible to transfer video to your smartphone. Front-on framing is straightforward, too, thanks to a flip-up 16:9 touchscreen, while the A6400’s advanced autofocus system serves up superb subject tracking. Port options, though, will put some vloggers off: as with the 6300 before it, there’s a microphone input but no headphone socket on the A6400. Many won’t monitor audio as they record, but it’s worth noting if interviews are your thing. There’s no in-body image stabilization either, and many of Sony’s prime lenses don’t feature it – not a problem if you use a tripod or go for that handheld aesthetic.

Canon EOS M6 Mark II

(Image credit: Future)

3. Canon EOS M6 Mark II

A travel-friendly CSC is great for video for many different reasons

Type: Mirrorless | Sensor size: APS-C | Resolution: 32.5MP | Effective focal length: N/A | Viewfinder: Not inbuilt | Monitor: 3.0-inch vari-angle touchscreen | Connectivity: Wi-Fi, NFC, Bluetooth | Max movie resolution: 4K 30p | Size, weight: 119.6 x 70 x 49.2mm, 408g

Small and light weight
Great tilt-up touchscreen
No built-in viewfinder
Relatively few native lenses 

Canon really is the king of vlogging cameras, with several making our list thanks to a fantastic range of features and options. The Canon EOS Mark II is the latest iteration of its M series of compact system cameras, and is small and light enough to be a great travel companion. 

However, in its miniature body, it’s housing the same high-resolution 32.5 megapixel sensor as the 90D DSLR (see below). With Dual Pixel CMOS AF and uncropped 4K video recording, it’s one you could use to kick your vlogs up a gear. There’s also a microphone input socket, plus a screen that faces all the way forward for perfect framing. 

(Image credit: Future)

4. Panasonic Lumix G90/G95

A great mid-range travel-friendly CSC with interesting video features

Type: Mirrorless | Sensor size: Four Thirds | Resolution: 20.3MP | Effective focal length: N/A | Viewfinder: OLED Live View Finder, 2,360k dots | Monitor: 3.0-inch fully articulating touchscreen | Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth | Max movie resolution: 4K 30p | Size, weight: 130.4 x 93.5 x 77.4mm, 533g

Smart selfie mode
Power Zoom kit lens option
No viewfinder
Only shoots 4k at 15fps

Inheriting the flagship G9’s sensor, Panasonic has packed a heck of a lot of features into this mid-range offering. For video lovers, you get 4K video recording, plus microphone and headphone sockets for perfect sound. 

There’s tonnes of lenses that are compatible with the Micro Four Thirds system, so there’s something for every job, while the 14-140mm f/3.5-5.6 lens which you can buy it with as part of a kit as a great all-rounder for lots of different shooting scenarios. A fully-articulating touchscreen is ideal for presenting to camera, while there’s also advanced video features such as V-Log recording, too. 

(Image credit: TechRadar)

5. GoPro Hero 8 Black

The best just got better

Type: Action | Sensor size: 4.5 x 6.2mm | Resolution: 12MP | Effective focal length: 16-27mm | Viewfinder: None | Monitor: 2.0-inch touchscreen | Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth | Max movie resolution: 4K 60p | Size, weight: 66.3 x 48.6 x 28.4mm , 126g

Rugged body
Superb stabilisation
Poor low-light performance
Most expensive GoPro

Although on paper it feels like an incremental upgrade, but this flagship model  - which has long been the shorthand for action cameras in general - has a lot to appeal to adventure lovers. There’s improved stabilization, a new microphone and a more streamlined app that makes actually recording and outputting your video a much happier and more pleasant experience. 

It’s not something that will appeal to everyone as an all rounder, but if your idea of vlogging includes trekking up mountains, diving under water or biking across uneven terrain, it’s probably the one that makes the most sense. 

(Image credit: Future)

6. Canon EOS M50

A great option if you don't mind shooting in 1080p

Type: Mirrorless | Sensor size: APS-C CMOS | Resolution: 24.1MP | Effective focal length: N/A | Viewfinder: EVF, 2.36 million dots | Monitor: 3.0-inch vari-angle touchscreen, 1.04 million dots | Connectivity: Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth | Max movie resolution: 4K | Size, weight: 116 x 88 x 59mm, 390g

Vari-angle touchscreen
Excellent Dual Pixel Autofocus
4K shooting has a large crop

If you need to shoot in 4K, then the Canon EOS M50 is best avoided due to mandatory 1.6x crop when shooting in this mode. But if you're making the switch from a smartphone and don't mind shooting in 1080p, then its a fine choice. Equipped with a 24.1MP APS-C CMOS sensor, the M50 was Canon’s first camera to ship with the DIGIC 8 processor – and its first mirrorless camera that could shoot 4K footage at up to 24fps. The downside is that crop in 4K, which means you’ll have a narrow field of view even when you’re filming at a wide focal length – tricky if you’re recording with an outstretched arm. You don’t get any of the specialized video profiles found on more expensive models, either, but the point of the M50 is that it’s compact and accessible. With a microphone input, vari-angle touchscreen and range of connectivity options in the mix, the M50 is still a stellar starter cam for budding vloggers.

(Image credit: Future)

7. Canon EOS 90D

A vlogging option for lovers of tradition

Type: DSLR | Sensor size: APS-C | Resolution: 32.5MP | Effective focal length: N/A | Viewfinder: Pentamirror | Monitor: 3.2-inch vari-angle touchscreen | Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth | Max movie resolution: 4K 30p | Size, weight: 140.7 x 104.8 x 76.8mm, 701g

Fully articulated screen
High-resolution sensor 
Uncropped 4K/30p video
Dual Pixel CMOS AF 
No image stabilisation 

DSLR releases are getting further and further apart during the reign of the mirrorless, but Canon’s release of the 90D shows that they’re not quite dead yet. Although primarily pitched as a stills camera, it has some useful vlogging-type features, including uncropped 4K video recording, mic input and an articulating touchscreen that faces forward for framing. 

You’ll also be tapping into Canon’s extensive range of lenses and accessories too, so you can be as creative as you want. 

(Image credit: Future)

8. Fujifilm X-T30

Beautiful looks and plenty of video functionality make Fujifilm’s travel CSC a decent vlogging option

Type: Mirrorless | Sensor size: APS-C | Resolution: 26.1Mp | Effective focal length: N/A | Viewfinder: 0.39-inch OLED | Monitor: 3.0-inch tilt-angle touchscreen | Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth | Max movie resolution: 4K 30p | Size, weight: 117 x 68 x 39mm, 380g

Stylish body
4K movie capture
No articulating screen 

If you’re somebody who shoots video as part of a wider “content” output which also includes stills, it makes sense to choose something which does well at both. The Fujifilm X-T30 includes many of the features of its bigger brother, the X-T3, but in a smaller, lighter and cheaper package. For video, it can shoot 4K at 30fps, and you can even record DCI 4K video though its HDMI port. The big downside here is the lack of a fully articulating or tilt up touchscreen – but if you’re mainly recording subjects other than yourself, it might not be such a big deal.

(Image credit: Future)

9. DJI Osmo Pocket

Pocket-friendly, great value and lots of accessories - a fun option for dedicated vloggers

Type: Compact | Sensor size: 1/2.3-inch | Resolution: 12MP | Effective focal length: na | Viewfinder: na | Monitor: 1.0-inch touchscreen | Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Lightning and USB-C | Max movie resolution: 4K | Size, weight: 121.9 x 28.6 x 36.9mm, 116g

Action-packed and weather-proofed
4K video at 30fps
Screen doesn’t rotate
Fixed focal length

Most of the cameras in this list are essentially stills cameras with some added video functionality. The DJI Osmo Pocket is a great option for those who are only interested in the video side of things - think of it more like an alternative to go a GoPro. This dinky little camera is teeny tiny, but it still records video at 4K/30fps, with a range of optional accessories giving you the tools to be as creative as you want. 

You’ll probably want to invest in a microphone for it for the best sound quality, but otherwise the quality of video, as well as useful features such as face tracking, make it a great tool for vloggers. 

(Image credit: Future)

10. Sony RX100 VII

Pretty much the perfect pocket cam - but with a high price tag to match

Type: Compact | Sensor size: 1.0-type | Resolution: 20.1MP | Effective focal length: 24-200mm | Viewfinder: Electronic | Monitor: 3.0-inch tilt-angle | Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth | Max movie resolution: 4K 30p | Size, weight: 101.6 x 58.1 x 42.8mm, 302g

Electronic viewfinder
4K movie capture
External mic port 
Very high price 

Sony proves time and time again that it’s the king of innovation, producing cameras which other companies pretty much only dream of. The problem is - as the consumer, you pay a high price for such amazing innovation. The RX100 VII is the latest in a long line of powerful pocket cameras, which deliver superb image and video quality, all while fitting neatly into pocket. For videographer and vloggers, temptation comes in the form of 4K video recording, a tilt-up touchscreen, a microphone socket - and Movie Eye AF to help keep you pin sharp as you face the camera. In many ways, the RX100 VII is the perfect all-rounder that is ideal for travel and holidays, but don’t expect it to be a budget buy.

(Image credit: Future)

What video quality should you be looking for?

Whatever type of camera you go for, considering video quality will likely be top of your list. At the absolute minimum you’ll be looking to shoot in Full HD (1080p), while 4K is becoming increasingly common. Although the higher resolution format will take up more space on your hard drive, it should future-proof your captures a little more than Full HD. 

Other specifications to pay attention to include built-in WiFi for sharing your vlogs on the move, a fully articulating or tilting monitor for helping to frame your face, a built-in microphone socket for enhancing sound quality. 

 We’ve picked out eight top cameras of various shapes, sizes and attributes to suit different styles of vlogging – as well as highlighting some that will fit into your all-round stills and video shooting requirements.