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Best vlogging cameras for YouTubers 2022 [Review and Guide]

Vlogging cameras Review

From mirrorless to high-end webcams, there’s a vlogging camera for everyone. An adjustable screen allows a solitary filmmaker to frame shots any way they want.

These video cameras are ideal for vloggers who wish to record professionally for their audience, start a YouTube channel, or live stream. The vlogging cameras nowadays have 4K resolution. But a good vlogging camera is more than that.

Small cameras like the Insta360 Go 2 give up creative freedom for convenience. The Sony ZV-1 is a great compromise, with no need for interchangeable lenses. Although small, the 1-inch sensor captures stunning 4K video.

1) Sony ZV-1 review (Powerful and Handy)

The Sony ZV-1 is currently the most powerful pocket vlogging camera available. It combines the most refined video capabilities of the Sony RX100 series, including the industry-leading autofocus technology, with design changes that make it perfect for filming YouTube videos at home or on the go.

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The combination of a brilliant 24-70mm f/1.8-2.8 lens and Sony’s Real-time tracking and Real-time Eye AF technologies is its primary strength. These features, along with the ZV-1’s 1-inch sensor, which is bigger than those used in today’s smartphones, make it simple to capture high-quality vlogs with attractive background blur and stable focus.

A 3.5mm microphone connector makes it easy to record high-quality audio, and a hot shoe lets you attach a shotgun mike or LED light without a bracket. The ZV-1’s three-capsule internal microphone is an advance over the RX100 series and other compact cameras, but it doesn’t match the video quality. The camera comes with a windshield for shooting in windy conditions.

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The ZV-1 is not ideal, and depending on your requirements, you may want to explore choices. While its SteadyShot stabilisation is adequate for walking movies, it falls short of the smoothness provided by the DJI Osmo Pocket, GoPro Hero 8 Black, or more extensive cameras such as the Olympus E-M5 Mark III.

Its greatest stability also results in a small crop, which may result in a slightly shorter focal length for handheld photos, but we didn’t find this to be a problem.

2) Fujifilm X-S10 review (Ultimate Choice for Professionals)

The Fujifilm X-S10 marks a significant advancement in the company’s pursuit of the ideal mid-range mirrorless camera. By incorporating several of the finest features from its flagship Fujifilm X-T4 camera, including in-body image stabilisation (IBIS), into a smaller, more affordable chassis, Fujifilm has created one of the best cameras for beginners and hobbyist photographers to date.

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The X-S10 is not a successor to the X-T10 but rather an effort to win over new admirers who have been resistant to Fujifilm’s charms thus far.

As with the X-T4, the Fujifilm X-S10 has been designed as a genuine all-rounder, capable of capturing both video and stills. You get the tried-and-true combo of the 26.1MP X-Trans CMOS 4 sensor, the X-Processor 4 and the ability to shoot 4K/30p video without cropping.

If you own an older Canon or Nikon DSLR and want to upgrade to something more compact and contemporary, the X-S10 will feel perfectly at home. How does the X-S10 stack up against its rivals? In general, pretty good. The still picture quality is similar to the Fujifilm X-T4, which is presently ranked first in our list of the finest cameras. The X-4K S10’s video is also competitive with the Nikon Z50 and Sony A6600.

When combined with the Fujfilm X-other S10’s strengths – vintage design, a comfortable grip, and outstanding picture and video quality – you have one of the finest mirrorless cameras available at this price point. The camera’s only flaws are the absence of weatherproofing and somewhat subpar focusing.

Design

The X-design S10 is also a significant departure from previous mirrorless cameras with its classic Fujifilm design. At first glance, it looks like a Fujifilm X-T4 with a larger, deeper grip. The grip makes the size difference less noticeable than the X-T4. While the X-S10 is not pocketable, it is 465g lighter than its brother. The magnesium alloy construction gives it a higher quality feel than cheaper models like the Fujifilm X-T200.

Only when you begin to use the X-S10 you will realise the significant differences between it and the rest of the X-series. Fujifilm cameras are well-known for their dial-heavy control layout, with the majority including a triplet of wheels for fine-tuning shutter speed, ISO, and exposure compensation.

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Rather than that, you get the PASM dial (Program, Aperture, Shutter Speed, Manual), which is the preferred method of operation for most other camera makers. Fujifilm said this is because it discovered that many consumers were put off converting to X-Series cameras simply because the standard dials were too complicated.

The X-absence S10’s d-pad on the rear also makes it more difficult to navigate its menus than on higher-end X-series cameras, with the tiny AF joystick taking over these functions. Nonetheless, we’re pleased to see an AF joystick included for selecting focusing points, and the X-S10 is a fun camera to work with on the whole.

Specifications

The Fujifilm X-S10 packs a punch in terms of power and features—the most noteworthy being in-body image stabilisation (IBIS). We’ve seen tiny, APS-C cameras with IBIS before—for example, the Sony A6600—but none at the price point of the X-S10. The most apparent competitor is the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III at this price range, which offers excellent stability but a smaller Four-Thirds sensor. Additionally, there are concerns about the long-term viability of cameras such as the E-M5 series, given Olympus’ intention to leave the camera industry.

The X-S10 offers six stops of correction with most X-series lenses, compared to 6.5 stops on the X-T4. The X-stabilization S10’s performance is compared to the X-T4 in many ways. We found the latter’s stabilisation claims to be overstated, and a gimbal would be required to truly smooth walking video footage.

IBIS is a significant improvement for anybody who has (or is contemplating purchasing) non-stabilised prime lenses like the XF90mm f/2. Additionally, Fujifilm has added a few digital stabilisation settings to supplement the sensor-based stabilisation on the X-S10. They will give your movies an extra layer of smoothness if you don’t mind having your footage cropped by 10%.

Performance and Experts Review

On paper, the X-S10 is an excellent all-arounder, but how does it perform in practice? It is highly competitive with competitors in this price range and size range. Although the IBIS technology is the true star, the X-autofocus, S10’s burst shooting, and battery life are all more mid-range than high-end – thus the hefty price.

For general photography, the X-autofocus S10 is very dependable and comparable to the X-T4. While performance varies naturally depending on the lens employed, the Face and Eye recognition AF proved very dependable – even when used with lenses like the XF 50mm f/1.0 WR.

fujifilm x-s10 top view

Fujifilm’s autofocus technologies have undoubtedly advanced significantly. However, they continue to lag behind class-leading systems like Sony’s Real-time tracking AF under demanding circumstances. Additionally, you miss out on features like Animal Eye AF, which is available on higher-end cameras. Nonetheless, the X-focusing S10 is more than enough for most photography scenarios.

Burst shooting is one of the most significant performance variances between the X-S10 and X-T4. With a maximum frame rate of 8 frames per second (with the mechanical shutter) and a small buffer, the X-S10 isn’t the most powerful instrument for capturing sports and action situations. The buffer fills at 8 frames per second after just 23 raw files (about three seconds of shooting) or 105 JPEGs. While shooting at 20 frames per second is feasible with the electronic shutter, only 17 raw files or 32 JPEGs are required.

Quality and Features

The X-S10 has the same 26.1MP back-illuminated sensor as the Fujifilm X-T4 and X-T30 — a tried-and-true performer still the finest in its class.

While you won’t have the same degree of raw editing freedom as you would with a full-frame camera, the presence of IBIS helps maintain picture quality in difficult lighting situations.

One of the advantages of the X-series cameras is their ability to generate excellent out-of-camera JPEGs — regardless of whether you utilise the 18 Film Simulations.

The original ISO range of the camera is 160–12,800, and we had no problems shooting at ISO 6400. Indeed, despite minor luminance noise, ISO 12800 is obvious and acceptable. Additionally, the dynamic range is very excellent, especially when using the built-in ‘DR’ settings in the picture quality menu.

3) GoPro Hero 9 Black Review (Rugged 5K camera with Awesome Front Display)

While the GoPro Hero 9 Black is the most powerful and flexible action camera available, its predecessor is more affordable for the majority of consumers. While the additional sensor and front display are welcome improvements, they do not represent a significant upgrade over the Hero 8 Black. Its somewhat unresponsive touchscreen is also a minor annoyance, even if a software update is on the way. While no other action matches Hero 9 Black’s skill set, several presently outperform it in terms of value.

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While the GoPro Hero 9 Black is the most powerful and versatile action camera available, its additional capabilities do not offer nearly enough incremental value over its predecessor to justify the price.

The improved sensor and front display are the two most significant improvements. In the appropriate circumstances, the new 23.6MP sensor captures 5K footage with somewhat greater clarity than the Hero 8 Black.

The Hero 9 Black’s electronic stabilisation, HyperSmooth Boost, is accessible in all shooting modes. As a consequence, it excels at 4K (and 5K) video. However, the new front colour display is ideal for vlogging and photography. It’s sluggish and lacks the Sony ZV-1’s articulating screen. This GoPro is for actors who often feature in films. Other new GoPro Hero 9 Black features are less sophisticated. The new battery extends battery life significantly, but the Hero 9 Black overheats more.

While GoPro’s latest flagship offers marginally enhanced stabilisation, its 4K footage quality isn’t significantly higher than the Hero 8 Black’s. While other capabilities, like scheduled recording, are sometimes helpful, they are not yet fully dependable. And most annoyingly, we found the back touchscreen of the Hero 9 Black to be very unresponsive at times.

Still, the latter issue is expected to be addressed in a November software update, and if GoPro can smooth out some of the Hero 9 Black’s other small quirks, it may yet become our top action camera choice. While the Hero 8 Black currently outperforms it in terms of value, its feature-packed sister is a close second.

Design

The Hero 9 Black is GoPro’s most significant overhaul since the Hero 5 Black, and the results are mostly favourable (with a few caveats).

Three significant physical differences exist between the Hero 8 Black and the Hero 8: a new 1.4-inch colour display on the front, a beefier body (to accommodate the larger battery), and a larger 2.27-inch back touchscreen.

These new capabilities seem like a reaction to the DJI Osmo Action, a young competitor that made GoPro action cameras feel a bit old in certain respects. In some ways, the Hero 9 Black continues to do so partly because the additional features all have minor drawbacks.

gopro hero9 black front view

To begin, the good news. The front-facing 1.4-inch colour display is a welcome feature for vlogging. Fortunately, it is not touch-sensitive, as else your memory card would soon fill up with unfortunate mishaps. Still, it offers a live video preview of your scene and some helpful shooting information.

As a square display, it falls short of the side-hinged shows seen on cameras such as the Sony ZV-1 or your smartphone’s screen when placed on gimbals such as the DJI OM 4. While the latter provides a comprehensive live preview of your whole shot, the Hero 9 Black’s provides more rough guidance. It’s sufficient to ensure that your face is included in the frame.

Features

GoPro’s secret sauce has always been a mix of its industry-leading HyperSmooth stabilisation, originally introduced on the Hero 7 Black, and smart software capabilities like TimeWarp. While the Hero 9 Black enhances these capabilities and expands its flexibility, it does not provide a compelling reason to upgrade from the Hero 8 Black.

Not that there aren’t some noticeable modifications under the hood. Since the Hero 3 Black in 2012, GoPro’s flagships have used 12MP sensors, but the Hero 9 Black takes the bold step of increasing this resolution to 23.6MP through a new sensor. This enables it to capture 5K/30p video and 20MP stills at all resolutions and frame rates while supporting the more powerful HyperSmooth Boost stabilisation option (which cuts your film by 25%).

Additionally, this resolution increase provides the Hero 9 Black with the additional pixels required to enable HyperSmooth Boost stabilisation, which helps smooth out judder caused by even the bumpiest mountain bike ride, in both 4K/60p and 5K/30p modes. On the Hero 8 Black, this is just not feasible.

On the other hand, neither HyperSmooth 3.0 nor TimeWarp 3.0, GoPro’s movement timelapse modes, are significant upgrades over their Hero 8 Black counterparts. HyperSmooth 3.0 essentially adds Boost stabilisation to those two higher resolutions and frame rates, along with some useful horizon levelling that was previously accessible exclusively in the GoPro app.

Performance

Hero 9 Black has new features but lacks major performance gains over the Hero 8 Black. It might not be immediately obvious in your videos, but under the hood, Hero 9 Black may not be much faster than Hero 8 Black. While the Hero 9 Black is a great action camera, its upgrades don’t always justify the price. The ‘floaty’ aspect of HyperSmooth 3.0 is good for capturing first-person sports, but it has reduced the stability.

However, the addition of HyperSmooth Boost to the 4K/60p and 5K/30p modes is unlikely to be a significant change for many users since setting HyperSmooth to ‘high’ (which results in a 10% crop rather than the 25% crop produced by Boost) is usually sufficient to smooth out any judder.

What about the new, larger battery in the Hero 9 Black? It does contribute to the weapon’s stamina, but not nearly enough to make a significant practical impact on how you fire.

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In our side-by-side battery test with the Hero 8 Black, we obtained an additional 12 minutes from the Hero 9 Black. Both cameras recorded 4K/30p with HyperSmooth enabled (84 minutes, compared to 72 minutes from its predecessor). And that included a brief cooling down period for the new model, something the Hero 8 Black lacked.

Quality of Picture and Video

The GoPro Hero 9 Black captures some of the finest videos and stills an action camera can produce, but it isn’t a significant improvement over the Hero 8 Black. The new 5K/30p mode captures much more information than any previous GoPro flagship, especially when using the maximum 100Mbps bit rate option. Additionally, file sizes are not significantly larger due to the efficient HEVC codec being used in certain settings, but they may be very demanding on your machine.

However, the additional resolution is unlikely to be noticed if you’re only interested in shooting videos for cellphones or social media. Even with a 4K display, you’ll see a noticeable improvement in detail only when cropping or pixel peeping. While crop ability is advantageous, it’s worth evaluating if you’ll ever use it.

However, if picture quality is your primary priority and you need the highest level of detail from an action camera, the Hero 9 Black may be well worth the cost. However, for most users, the Hero 8 Black and Hero 7 Black are more than enough in this area. After all, all three cameras have the same sensor size. And regardless of how effective GoPro’s Hypersmooth stabilisation is, even the tiniest bit of judder may nullify the resolution increase.

When recording 4K/30p video on both the Hero 9 Black and the Hero 8 Black, we sometimes preferred the footage from the latter. The Hero 9 Black’s video may seem more processed and oversharpened out of the box, due to some somewhat more severe noise suppression. Increased detail is possible when more photosites are packed onto the same size sensor, but it also increases the amount of noise that must be controlled.

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