How fancy is to say “Dude, I shoot my vlogs in 4K?” But rightly, 4K video cameras have way broader purposes apart from this statement. When it comes to video cameras, 1080P and 4K cameras fight a real battle for their “Importance” in video recording.
I literally hear what you say.
YouTube content and vlogging have now been refashioned with the entry of 4K UHD. So if you are a beginner or want to upgrade your gadget to 4K filming, I am placing here 7 best 4K vlogging camera for the ultimate value of money.
Handling and post-editing in 4K is a bit winding task, so the question arises here whether there is a sheer necessity of 4K in vlogging or video recording?
Here are some of the most real points that show the departments where the 4K would only be your survivor. So the 4K mode comes in;
- When you do a lot of cinematic and film-making stuff in vlogging.
- When you do post-editing so 4K keeps the quality up to the standard. As sometimes grading or putting effects reduce the video quality so playing with bigger quality video makes it less prone to pixel disturbance.
- When your audience is mostly desktop or bigger screen users.
- When you have skills and budget to handle the best 4K camera for the money.
- And too least, when you want to go for some fancy stuff.
With these points, still, you may have your own reasons to deal with 4K video recording. But the issue is how to choose the best budget 4K video camera for vlogging? I am listing out some factors to give your 4K video camera search in the right direction.
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1. Panasonic G7 – Best 4k Vlogging Camera
Panasonic is known as the brand in the camera world who really cares about the filmmakers. And for this camera, it seems authentic and substantial. This little boy from the Lumix lineup is the best mirrorless camera under $500 for entry-level vloggers and filmmakers.
As the successor to the G6 model, it has been packed with all the basic to mid-range goodies of vlogging, YouTube content creation, and filmmaking. Coming in competition with its biggest rivals like Canon T6i, Sony a6000, and Olympus E-M10, it rings the victory bells with the addition of 4K video mode.
Panasonic has given a 4K mode with the availability of 24, 25, and 30 FPS capability. Besides, you can also perform your vlogging jobs with 1080P FHD at 60FPS. And these video filming abilities are being supported by the Panasonic signature DFD processors.
This 16MPs MFT 12-42MM sensor camera takes the competition to heights giving you a fully articulating screen. Now, this is something for which you’ll thank Panasonic as even many higher-end cameras like Sony A7S II only secures a tilt screen.
Therefore, with this articulating screen addition, bring ease to your vlogging sessions.
Panasonic has given a contrast-based AF system, which is further simplified by three dedicated buttons. MF (Manual Focus), AF-S (Single) and AF-C (Continuous) allow you to set your AF for stationary or moveable objects.
The AF system gets powered up with 6 more AF modes to keep the object locked in a better way. You can touch-up the screen to adjust AF according to the situation.
However, in 4K mode, the Autofocus lags a bit to detect the highly movable objects.
Unfortunately, Panasonic has given optical stabilization instead of an IBIS system. However, the price point perfectly justifies this lack. You can get an upper version of the G7- Panasonic G7KS model, which is the best mirrorless camera under 1000$ for vloggers and filmmakers.
Additionally, keeping the pride of vlogging high, you also get a 3.5MM external microphone jack. This allows you to produce the videos with much crystal sound. The built-in audio capability is also excellent, but with this external microphone option, this deal is from another world.
There is an almost 30-min video recording session limit for better performance. This limit is just because the Lumix G7 model produces the video files in the Mp4 codec, which is a heavier format to digest by the camera processor. Besides, this video format becomes tough for post grading and touch-ups.
Yet, if you occasionally utilize 4K for short clips or cinematic shots, this would not be an irritation for your nose.
Why should one buy this?
Panasonic G7 is an “ultimate” package for beginners and junior filmmakers to power up their vlogging and filmmaking skills. Making a difference with articulating screen, audio jack, and great cinematic profiles, it’s the most affordable 4K camera for new entrants.
2. Canon EOS M50 – Best Cheap 4k Camera
The good thing about the canon cameras is the versatility in the models. This camera comes from the M series that also has very much market renowned M10 and M100, M5, and M6 models.
Anyways, for this camera model, it is very much similar to the previous Panasonic Lumix G7 model. Specifically, if you’ll compare these camera’s specifications, things are pretty much identical here. For an enticing entry-level vlogging and filmmaking setup, this is one of the most affordable 4K mirrorless cameras in the Canon lineup.
Fully articulated 3-inch screen, external microphone, and most compact M15-45MM M series lens make this best budget canon camera with much lighter and compact 4k vlogging setup.
In addition to this, you’ll see a DIGIC 8 processor rather than a 7th DIGIC chip you saw in the previous model. Plus, the 24MP APS-C CMOS sensor will make you realize a whole new approach by the canon.
Technically, you get the Canon’s signature Dual-Pixel AF set up here, which is a more helpful solution than Panasonic G7 AF technology. Unfortunately, you can’t use it in 4K mode and only rely on manual mode.
But then, here is a whole new Smart Eye detection feature that much closely targets your face while tracking your eyes. Though you come closer, change your direction or keep your eyes close, M50 is smart enough to judge every situation without any lag.
On the whole, the Dual-Pixel AF system and DIGIC 8 Processor renders an exquisite finish and speed to video and pictures processing, respectively. And don’t forget, you the very first time are getting a CR3 RAW format that is an updated compression codec.
CR3 in a budget model – Yes it’s real to See 40% less image size with same performance and quality
As a 4K camera, the FPS game is pretty standard here, giving you 24-30FPS while 1080P mode gets 60FPS facility. Although, the 4K mode does a 1.7x crop factor in the comparison of 1080P just because it’s not a full-frame mirrorless camera.
Nonetheless, the picture quality has a sharpness and THAT crisp, which you’ll not find in other MFT’s cameras.
Likewise, the Dual-Pixel AF system isn’t functional in 4K mode, so you can only use it in FHD mode. But then 4K mode is further connected with built-in 4K time-lapse, Max 10FPS burst mode, and cinematic profiles.
Now, wait a minute here, 10FPS burst mode is something that flawlessly does the sports and action shooting. With the AF feature, this camera does 7.5FPS burst mode.
Consequently, your 4K vlogging scene gets handsomely done through this little fellow.
EOS M50 or M50 (whatever) also has a built-in 2.35M dot EVF that is pretty much a great player in this league of cameras. The tilt-swivel EVF gives smooth angling to the view.
Why should one buy this?
This is the first-ever 4K mirrorless model in the Canon lineup that brings many versatile features for amateur YouTubers and vloggers. Intelligent controls, faster DIGIC processor, and eye-detection AF will allow you to take complete control over your work.
Likewise, built-in lapse, improved burst mode, and multiple cinematic and shooting modes will truly bloom your heart for your skills.
3. Sony a6400 4K – Best Compact 4K Video Camera
Talk about compact mirrorless cameras, and how is it possible that Sony doesn’t race for it? Alpha or A-Series is quite popular and to be very straight a6300 and 6500 are the legendary models in this lineup.
So, in-between these great cameras, we have this entry to mid-range a6400 that is not much different from a6300 but carries some handy changes for your treat.
First of first, with this camera, Sony finally has something to offer for Vloggers and YouTubers particularly. This camera doesn’t have the articulating screen yet, 180 degrees tilt-up, and 90 degrees down does the purpose. Also, Sony has straightforwardly come out of a built-in audio feature zone and placed an external microphone jack.
The compactness, flip touch-screen, and external audio – hopefully, you can sense the SONY plans with this model.
Sony has always remained on the higher nodes of competition with its AF technology. Canon brings its Dual-Pixel technology on the table, but guess what! Sony has its 0.02 sec as the fastest AF acquisition speed.
In this model, you get live eye tracking AF and 425 phase-detection/contrast-detection autofocusing system. The Live eye-tracking system has been schooled by the AI, so it intelligently keeps the subject locked in every situation.
On the video performance, there is no paramount of innovation that Sony can offer you. Yet, things look super decent and powerful for intermediate filmmakers and vloggers. The 4K mode is somewhat the same with 30Fps, but 1080P holds 120FPS ability.
Thus, much smoother slow-motion videos are on your way. For this department, you know, a much-updated processor is in the ingredient list of this model.
Sony has introduced a new Bionz X image processor that is effectively responsible for better noise reduction, 16-bit image processing, and improved AF locking. So, compare it with a6300, now you may have an idea what you are getting in this alpha series variant
Additionally, the burst mode gives you 11FPS with a silent shutter. Now, this can somewhat give you a sip of joy if you want to shoot outdoor activities and sports. Burst mode gives you 8FPS on average with AF that is slightly similar to its counterpart Fuji-film X-T30.
Sony has tried to do a lot of work with a6400’s design, giving much more dedicated controls for comfortable usability. Unfortunately, Sony has a quite average portfolio when it comes to Menu settings and configuration.
As a newbie, it’s just a “Dig, dig, and more dig down” scenario to access the desired settings. Factually, Sony has this kind of tag with its name in the market. Though with this model, you can much-improved scenario with dedicated two dialers to adjust shutter speed, ISO and Aperture.
However, apart from these, other controls and settings face the same old “Sony Thing.”
Why should one buy this?
With outstanding abilities to autofocus and lighter weight, it can be your perfect travel partner. With much compact body size, it entirely fits into a pocket. This camera is also a treat for slow-motion videos with 120FPS at 1080P.
4. Panasonic Lumix GH5 – Best 4k Camera for YouTube:
So we are just crossing the 1000$ limit, and to be very honest, this Panasonic model deserves the first spot to get notified. In comparison to Olympus and Canon, Panasonic has tried to make it a full-fledged best 4K vlogging camera at a much competitive price.
Just see its 4K abilities, and you’ll know it’s a 4-5-year-old camera but still isn’t that old schoolboy in 2020. The camera comes from the MFT lineup but carries bigger responsibilities of 4K at 60FPS, which many higher-end cameras don’t offer.
Factually, a smaller sensor does a crop factor while shooting 4K. Panasonic has made sure you won’t have to face the same old lack in this famous G series family member.
While many cameras lag after some minutes of 4K shooting, Panasonic also covers up this issue giving you a Limitless Time Recording feature. With this feature, Lumix GH5 has gone farther from the competition with unlimited 4K recording until your battery dies.
Consequently, bring more battery backup to your bag, take your vlogging and shooting sessions to much longer durations.
In addition to this, 1080P at 120FPS allows you to capture much smoother and fluent slow-motion videos. With higher FPS rate shooting mode for both 1080P and 4K, built-in cinematic profiles and time-lapse features make it a RockStar camera for adding cinematic effects into your short clips and long video shots.
Panasonic has made this camera for mid-level to higher-end needs, so it’s obvious to see an IBIS system. But along with this, you get a sensor-shift technology, which you also see in a newer Lumix G9 model. The only distinction between both model’s sensor-shift technology features is, you get dual stabilization in GH5.
For movable objects, what you were getting blurry, unfocused, and disturbed images in the G9 model, you won’t have to face the same here in GH5.
You know, you already have Sony and Canon in the market that are AF system’s giants. Panasonic, with its 225AF system in GH5, has given a much stronger competition to these competitors.
The AF is further divided into two modes – Pin-Point and One-Area. The same approach, like Sony, Pin-Point, allows you to keep the target locked to a specific subject while One-Area is all about focusing a particular portion or area.
At the display side, the 3.2” touch LCD is slightly bigger than the standard 3” inch display. Also, you get high magnification EVF with a much higher resolution of 3.5M dots. The EVF is slightly smaller than the G9 model, yet it refreshes without any lag.
With all tremendous distinctive features in the mid-range camera category, the camera efficiently manages to remain fast, quick, and responsive.
Why should one buy this?
Panasonic has induced plenty of innovative features to make it an all-rounder performer. The versatility in video performance has made this camera an evergreen device still in 2020 for great filmmaking and attention-grabbing vlogging job.
5. Nikon Z50 – Best 4K Video Camera
The DSLR giant posted two models (Z6 and Z7) in the mirrorless category, and the camera world was happy about the competition that Nikon brought to superiors of the mirrorless industry. However, both models are not for the newcomers or beginner’s lot and were demanding 1000 to 2000 bucks to spend.
So here is the Z50, which is a much lighter, compact, and crop down version of its mirrorless siblings. This 20.9MP camera is an APS-C camera with the compatibility of the DX-format sensor. As this camera is a cut-down or budget model in the Z series, you must note down the Z series is quite alive for more variants.
With uncropped 4K video, Flipdown screen, and crunchiest AF system, Nikon has planned this camera model, especially for YouTubers, Instagramers, and Vloggers.
There is nothing unusual in the EVF and LCD section. You can find a standard 2.36M dot smaller EVF and 1.06M 180 degrees flip-down screen. Now, for my experience, flip-down angling is much more convenient, and in fact, it would also be for vloggers and Youtubers.
This approach helps you to more perfectly adjust your viewing angle to the camera. Hence, it helps the YouTubers, vloggers, and live streamers to better get connected with your audience.
This camera is a lighter version in the Z series, so you will get 209 Hybrid AF points covering 87% for the frame in comparison to 90% of Z7 that is the best camera for filmmaking.
The Z50 has multiple AF modes, and you should know what you are using. With conventional Auto, dynamic, and wide-area AF modes, you also get pin-point and single-point AF that are also Sony and Canon things.
Z6 Supplies an eye-tracking system that somehow has a limitation to only get active in auto-area mode. And then, your subject should also be big enough so the camera can detect his eyes; instead, it will track other subjects.
However, it’s an insignificant thing if you’re looking for vlogging and Youtube purposes.
The camera is smaller in size, so it’s making an obvious sense you won’t get the IBIS system. Nevertheless, lens and digital stabilization is a part of this device.
On the video performance side, you get standard 24-30FPS for 4K, but the 1080P sweetly goes to 120FPS. Another good thing that can put a mysterious smile on your face is, there is no crop factor for 4K.
Yes! Being an APS-C camera, you can still utilize full-width framing in 4K.
The built-in time-lapse and 11FPS burst mode brings Sony a6400, Fujifilm X-T30, and Canon EOS M6 MKII on the competition board. In this scenario, you’ll find this Nikon model in between the competitors due to its 5FPS burst mode with AF.
Why should one buy this?
If you are a user of DSLRs (mainly Nikon D500 and 750), this thing is an upgraded version of DSLRs with much improvement in style, usage, and 4K abilities. Nikon Z50 is not an ordinary holiday or travel photography camera yet; it can match your 4K video requirement with its balanced performance.
6. Canon 4K [EOS 90D] – Best 4K DSLR Camera
In a booming trend of mirrorless, if you are still a classic DSLR lover, this is a perfect intermediate-level DSLR taking a lead on its predecessor Canon 80D. With classic DSLR like ergonomics, 4K, lots of dedicated controls (user-customizable), and sharpest AF system, this camera also comes with a single DIGIC 8 Processor.
Yes, I know, it’s a single chip in comparison to the previous model with dual DIGIC 6 Processor; however, the speed is the crunchiest part of this camera that also brings the fastest boot time.
Factually, the camera is a little old still; you can see a Vari-angle articulated screen with an external microphone port. The live viewfinder is also part of this camera but only the optical one.
But anyway, it works well without lag in refresh rate with 100% coverage area.
In comparison to its previous model, there is an addition of 4K video mode. The FPS rate is standard 30FPS, yet, for slow-motion features, canon takes you toward 1080P at 120 FPS.
Canon firstly opted out the very much usable 24FPS shooting mode for both 1080 and 4K mode. Then with a very sudden effect, Canon realized about the lack and gave a firmware update to add 24FPS for both video modes.
So, for this camera, you must note down your camera is updated to get 24FPS mode.
Canon has given a 32.5MP CMOS Sensor that captures pleasant images, though the only lag here is a 30Min video recording limit. Video performance is also sharpest, and the distinction is 4K with much sharpness and depth in the quality.
Nonetheless, a fixed optical low-pass filter on the sensor is a thing to watch for video quality.
Autofocusing is also the quickest in speed with 45 cross-type points. You can shoot built-in 4K time-lapse and 10+ FPS burst mode. In the field test, Canon does very well than the 6D and 80D only behind the M6 II.
The burst mode narrows down to 7FPS with AF, which is a pretty average count with a comparison of respective Mirrorless counterparts.
Why should one buy this?
Canon 90D is a perfect intermediate level DSLR with great 4K video shooting. The much easy usability and great weather-resistant built quality to allow you to shoot in severe outdoor conditions. Apart from the head-scratching mirrorless, this is a handy device for classic DSLR lovers.
7. Sony A7 III – Best Budget 4k Camera
Sony has launched this camera as “Entry-level Full-Frame.” But on the improvement side equation, you’ll experience some positive gains in every aspect of this camera while comparing this model to its older sibling.
Sony a7 III brings its previous models a7r III, a7 II, Nikon D750 DSLR, and Canon EOS 6D MKII to competition battle. Moreover, in many aspects, it crosses the finishing line being a well-performing camera setup.
This 24MP camera has the speediest AF carrying 692 phase-detection AF and 425 contrast-detection with the trust of Sony’s reliable AF system. The AF system covers 93% of the frame, and you’ll enjoy the fullest width to target subjects.
Furthermore, Sony has given multiple AF modes to target every type of shooting scenario with great ease, while Eye AF is wholly a new one in this device.
Sony has always remained above the surface of the AF system. So, to this APS-C camera, Sony has been induced by all the spices that make it a device with superb AF.
The A7 III comes with a tilt screen for both upward and downward direction that makes this device to stay behind the Canon EOS M6 II. With 0.92M dots resolution, you’ll really be surprised by this strange move by Sony.
Moreover, Sony hasn’t done a fascinating job with the OLED EVF. With a camera priced around almost 2K$, it should have been packed with 3.5M+ dots resolution. Also, the magnification is pretty average doing a 0.78x, but it’s slightly an improved count than its competitors.
On the other side of the equation, Sony has given a much-missed headphone jack to monitor the quality of sound and noise. So, your vlogs and videos will be sweetly audible to your audience.
On the video performance side, Sony has introduced 4K at 30FPS. On the 24FPS, you can enjoy the un-cropped version of your shoot, while at 30FPS, a slight 1.2x crop comes into your way. Besides, Sony has used oversampling mechanism instead of pixel binning for much more in-depth and exposed details of your work.
The video and image performance get a further crunch with a 5-axis IBIS system that makes this camera a strong contender in the competition.
The continuous 10FPS is also a prominent thing in its features.
Factually, Sony has always remained on the negative side of the story while considering the battery backup. However, for now, it genuinely looks like Sony has realized where the matters are going out of the hands. Sony has given a much bigger battery than its casual and typical battery offerings.
With this camera, you’d be able to capture around 710 stills, which is undoubtedly not the best in the competition yet, what Sony’s track record depicts so far – it’s a handsome counter by Sony.
Why should one buy this?
Upgrading from APS-C sensors to Full-frame, A7 III is a much-balanced option to cater to your intermediate-advanced level needs of 4K video shooting. With the quickest speed and super-responsive AF system, you can enjoy a crispy “Click and shoot” scenario in every type of indoor/outdoor conditions.
Picking a very best 4K vlogging camera is a pretty much difficult task. You can’t get a perfectionist, yet a close call to your purpose can be a real deal. With all our listings, every camera is a champion of its own domain. However, I can clearly see a few of them as an all-rounder performer. So, I am picking 3 of my recommendations to better guide you about a perfect 4K vlogging camera choice.
Top 3 4k Vlogging Camera Recommendation:
I nominate Panasonic Lumix GH5 as my clear WINNER. This camera is a master of all aspects. The innovation-packed camera hammers down any of its competitors with 4K at 60Fps, Limitless time recording, and uncropped video resolution even being an MFT camera. With a great balance of price and features, it still attracts many field beginners and experts.
The 2nd Spot is grabbed by Canon EOS M50 4K camera. With a smaller size, unmatchable video and image performance and addition of CR3 raw format make this camera prominent in the crowd. Yet, 1.7x crop on 4K mode and no IBIS system shortens its range in the competition.
On the last recommendation, the answer is Sony A7 III that is Only Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera in competition. Taking more substantial responsibilities on its shoulder, it has the pride of the most effective and quickest AF system. Also, the battery backup is pretty decent here.
With a somewhat hefty price tag, the average performing LCD display and EVF make this camera suffer average ratings. Other than these regular features, this camera is assuredly a beast in its class.
Apart from these top 3 best 4K cameras for the money, you can choose the best budget 4K camera according to your preference.
Factors to Choose a Top 4K Video Camera for Vlogging:
Flip Screen is Must: You have to place yourself in front of the camera in both moving and stationary conditions. For the best vlogging camera, Flip screen is a “Must Have” option to better represent yourself in front of the camera.
Cameras with a 180-Degree flip or fully articulated screens are good to go with your vlogging purpose. Yet, if you are really restricted on the budget side, you have to settle yourself with cheap 4K cameras with a 90-degree tilt screen.
External Microphone Enhances the Audio Quality: The majority of the cameras get succumbed to poor audio quality due to the built-in microphone. So, the only unzip of this puzzle is the external microphone option for a better sound job.
Whether you shoot indoors or outdoors, the external microphone superbly amplifies the audio and reduces the unwanted noise (Brand dependable).
IBIS System for Stable videos: Travel vlogging or other outdoor shoots make the camera go through various conditions. It’s good to have a better In-body stabilization system rather than stabilization in the lens. The IBIS system relieves you from not to stick with your gimbal in every situation. Also, it dramatically magnifies video stability and quality.
Check-on Overheating Issue: Some entry-level cameras with low processor speed get overheated due to extravagance of information processing due to 4K mode. Pick a camera that has a much better capability of handling the enormous information quantity without getting overheated.
Battery Life Saves Your day: Don’t excuse your vlogging sessions with quick battery drainage. Most of the cheapest 4k cameras really are parasitic when it comes to 4K video mode. From entry-level to high-end 4K video cameras, you have the leverage to choose between 15 minutes to 1 hour of recording time at 4K.
However, if you are a beginner or intermediate level user and shoot short 4K clips, choose something in-between these ranges. From my perspective, 30-mins are reasonably competent to go.
Apart from these points, you can choose AF performance, budget limit, weight load, and other matrices into your consideration.
FAQS: Frequently Asked Questions
How do I stop my camera from overheating?
Multiple options and techniques are there but you must note down why your camera overheats. Some of the most common overheating problems are low-speed memory cards, direct contact with sunlight for a longer duration, longer 4K sessions, etc. You can fix these issues according to your situation and usage.
Does the Sony a6400 overheat?
Sony gave a firmware update to fix this matter. From 6300 to 6500 there is an “Auto Pwr Off” feature that kicks a warning if your camera is approaching the unusual heat temperature.
What is the fastest focusing camera?
Canon and Sony make the best AF systems. Yet, Sony a6400 reportedly holds the fastest AF with 0.02-sec acquisition speed.
Do I need 4k 60fps?
It depends on your needs. The cinematic, slow-motion, great bold video quality needs 4K at 60FPS.
Is 4k at 30fps better than 1080p at 60fps?
Its speed vs quality. 1080P at 60FPS is all about speed and 30 FPS is about quality. It all depends on your choice of what you choose for your requirements.