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Camcorder Reviews

Updated: Apr 19, 2024 16:53
Brand
alaScore
#1
alaScore 100

Insta360 Go 3

The Insta360 Go 3 grabs quality 2.7K30 video and cleverly transforms between a wearable and...

13 expert reviews

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#2
alaScore 99

GoPro Hero11 Black

“The GoPro Hero 11 Black now has a bigger sensor and exciting new features beneath a familiar...

21 expert reviews

#3
alaScore 99

DJI Osmo Action 4

The DJI Osmo Action 4 is the adventure-ready camera to get if you're all about low-light...

12 expert reviews

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#4
alaScore 98

GoPro Hero10 Black

“The perfect portable and durable all-in-one camera kit for on-the-go video makers.”

23 expert reviews

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#5
alaScore 98

DJI Osmo Pocket 3

DJI's Osmo Pocket 3 vlogging camera records perfectly steady video and performs better in dim...

3 expert reviews

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#6
alaScore 98

Insta360 Ace Pro

The Insta360 Ace Pro is an action cam with features that put it in contention with the biggest...

9 expert reviews

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#7
alaScore 97

Nextbase 622GW 4K

This camera comes closer to a 5-star rating than any dash cam we've reviewed. The 4K UHD captures...

21 expert reviews

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#8
alaScore 97

Bird Buddy Smart Bird Feeder

The Birdbuddy Smart Bird Feeder sends highly shareable snapshots and video postcards of the local...

3 expert reviews

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#9
alaScore 97

DJI Osmo Action 3

“The DJI Osmo Action 3 is a great action camera that distinguishes itself with a unique magnetic...

15 expert reviews

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#10
alaScore 97

InfiRay Xinfrared P2 Pro

The consumer thermal camera market was opened up in the late 2010s by the launch of Seek...

7 expert reviews

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#11
alaScore 96

DJI Osmo Pocket

The DJI Osmo Pocket is an intriguing travel camera for vloggers and social media personalities...

31 expert reviews | 11 user reviews

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#12
alaScore 96

GoPro Hero9 Black 5K

GoPro's latest flagship brings new features to both software and hardware, but 5K video and 24MP...

23 expert reviews

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#13
alaScore 96

Autel Robotics Evo Lite+

The Autel Robotics Evo Lite+ folding drone has strong battery life, obstacle detection, and...

6 expert reviews

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#14
alaScore 96

Insta360 One RS

“The Insta360 ONE RS is the best you can buy to gain entry into the 360-degree camera space and...

18 expert reviews

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#15
alaScore 96

GoPro Hero11 Black Mini

“The GoPro Hero 11 Mini is no less powerful than its big brother.”

6 expert reviews

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#16
alaScore 96

Garmin Dashcam Live

The full-featured Garmin Dash Cam Live records your driving trips in excellent quality, offers...

4 expert reviews

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#17
alaScore 95

Insta360 ONE X2

The Insta360 One X2 camera takes away the worry about framing your short and deciding which...

10 expert reviews | 1 user reviews

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#18
alaScore 95

Hasselblad X2D 100C

The 100MP Hasselblad X2D might just be the iconic brand's best ever camera

2 expert reviews

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#19
alaScore 95

Miofive 4K dash cam

This is an excellent dash cam for the price, with first-rate 4K UHD day and night captures, GPS...

3 expert reviews

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#20
alaScore 95

Garmin Dash Cam 67W

The Garmin 67W is a top-notch dash cam with a compact design, high-quality video with HDR and a...

5 expert reviews

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#21
alaScore 95

GoPro Hero7 Black (2018)

The Hero 7 might not come with a host of new shooting modes or imaging improvements, but it does...

42 expert reviews | 53 user reviews

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#22
alaScore 95

GoPro Hero8 Black (2019)

The Hero8 Black is a solid step forward for GoPro thanks to a new design with an integrated mount...

28 expert reviews | 1 user reviews

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#23
alaScore 95

Garmin Dash Cam Mini 2

The Garmin Dash Cam Mini 2 takes good video both day and night, and is by far the smallest, most...

4 expert reviews

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#24
alaScore 95

Elgato Wave 3

The Elgato Wave 3 delivers high-quality audio with easy-to-use software in a lightweight elegant...

15 expert reviews

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#25
alaScore 95

Obsbot Tiny 4K

A great streaming and presenting companion

3 expert reviews

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    Buying Guide

    Buying Guide - Camcorders

    Many cellphones and digital cameras have a built-in record setting, but for high quality recordings that will stand the test of time you need the outstanding performance and advanced features of a dedicated camcorder unit. There is a camcorder that meets every need, from compact units that can be used on the go, to professional models with cinema-quality lenses. Before you shop for a new camcorder, make sure you have in mind what types of events you will be recording, and purchase a model that matches your individual needs.



    Contents

    What to Look for in a Camcorder

    Zoom – Every camcorder comes with a zoom lens that lets you get closer to your subject. Each camcorder has some sort of zoom lens, camcorder manufacturers don't always distinguish clearly between digital and optical zoom. Most modern camcorders have at least a 10X optical zoom, which should be more than adequate for general usage. A digital zoom crops and magnifies your footage after the optical zoom is fully extended. This method leads to grainy, pixelated, and generally unpleasant-looking images. In a nutshell, the more optical zoom, the better.

    Resolution – Like televisions, digital camcorders are available in standard definition and high definition (HD). Standard definition models will cost less than high definition on average. They'll deliver video quality suitable for viewing on a computer or non-HDTV. HD camcorders will produce wide-screen video suitable for viewing on an HDTV.

    Image Sensor – There are two main types of camcorder image sensors: CCD (charge coupled device) and CMOS (complementary metal oxide semiconductor). Both types of image sensor technology contain hundreds of thousands or even millions of pixels. Commonly, a camcorder with a CMOS sensor will offer better battery life than one with a CCD. The number of pixels on an image sensor is not the only factor influencing the quality of the video captured. The physical size of the sensor matters as well. Larger image sensors can capture more light than smaller ones, even if they have fewer pixels.

    Image Stabilization – Unless you plan on doing all your shooting from a tripod mount, you will need a camcorder that features image stabilization; luckily, this feature is available on all but entry level camcorders. Each manufacturer has a different name for their image stabilization technology, but within each price point they all perform similarly.

    Audio – Audio is an overlooked aspect of camcorder performance, and poor sound quality has ruined many recordings. If you plan on recording events in which the sound quality is just as important as the image quality, get a camcorder that has the audio performance to match your needs.

    Storage Medium – Most camcorders store footage on flash memory devices, SD cards, and the like, which offers the greatest level of convenience for the casual user. Many of the most advanced models record on mini-cassettes, which are fine for professional applications, but require conversion to put footage onto DVDs or flash media. A flash memory based camcorder will be lighter in weight and smaller in size than a hard drive-based camcorder, but won't offer as much internal storage.

    Battery – Battery life is an important consideration: the amount of recording and playback time you'll get out of a battery varies, but most camcorders are able to record for at least an hour with the included battery. If you plan on recording long events (sports events, concerts, etc.), make sure you get a model with sufficient battery life, or order an additional battery. Keep in mind that repeatedly reviewing the footage you just shot will drain your camcorder's juice quickly.

    Accessories – There are many accessories available to help improve the performance of most camcorders, particularly among the more advanced models. Additional lenses allow for better picture quality and additional zoom, tripods and mounts allow you to film the action smoothly, and microphone upgrades can improve the audio. There are even waterproof kits that let you take your camcorder underwater. Many compact models assemble some connectors on a dock, so if you plan to connect to a friend's TV or want to offload video while traveling, make sure the connectors you need are on the camcorder and won't be left at home.

    Popular Camcorder Brands

    Panasonic and Sony have long been famous for the quality of their camcorders, and both brands offer models at a range of different performance levels and prices. JVC is famous for high-end models with a full range of add-ons and accessories, while Canon has gone one step further – although expensive, their best models recoup the investment by being appropriate for professional film and television use. Flip Video specializes in entry-level camcorders for those on a budget and casual users.

    Popular Camcorder products

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    Camcorders on alaTest

    alaTest.com has collected and analyzed millions of reviews from 2688 sources to help you choose the best Camcorder from top brands like Gopro, Insta360, Dji, Garmin, To Be Defined and more.

    Buying Tips Read our Buying Guide
    before you make your purchase