Best Compact Cameras for Designers & Photographers

Best Compact Cameras for Designers & Photographers

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Compact cameras are a great combination of convenience and portability and can be a great way of taking incredible photos without the hassle of changing lenses that can come with a DSLR camera. If you need a camera for a project that just turns on and works, then a compact camera might be the best option.

With our list of the Best Compact Cameras for Designers & Creatives, we also wanted to make it easier for you to choose the best one with some tips. So, if you’re ready, let’s start there.

 

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How to Choose the Perfect Compact Camera

When it comes to choosing the right compact camera, it is hardly ever a one-size-fits-all and shouldn’t be. To help you pick the right camera, we wanted to offer some tips on how to choose the best option for you.

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Intended Use

One of the first questions you should ask is what you intend to use the camera for. This can reduce the number of options out there for you to choose from and narrow it down. Knowing what you want to use it for will help you decide if you should be looking at a camera with a manual exposure control or one with auto-oriented control selections.

Lens

The lens the camera has can make a big difference in the camera you choose. If you’re looking to use a camera in either low light or shallow depth-of-field situations, then a lens with a wide aperture is the best option. Things can get confusing when there are cameras that use different size sensors and have different image-stabilization systems but a good rule of thumb is that better cameras will have lower aperture numbers.

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Viewfinder and screen

While the growing trend for all kinds of cameras is to have a viewfinder on the back of the camera, if you’re outside in bright conditions, you may want to consider a camera video a good viewfinder. These are usually electronic and can help you see what you’re shooting more clearly. The screen on the back is worth considering as well as cameras tend to come with different options. Some models have a fixed screen, while others will have a tilt-able screen that can make getting awkward angles much easier.

Best Compact Cameras for Creatives

Best Compact Cameras for Creatives Compared

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Best Overall Value
Canon Ixus 285 HS Black, 1076C001
Best For Adventures
OLYMPUS TG-5 Red 12 million pixel CMOS F2.0 15m waterproof 100kgf load-bearing GPS + electronic...
Best For Travel Photography
Panasonic LUMIX ZS100 4K Digital Camera, 20.1 Megapixel 1-Inch Sensor 30p Video Camera, 10X LEICA DC...
Best For Low Light
Fujifilm X100F 24.3 MP APS-C Digital Camera-Silver
Best Budget
Nikon COOLPIX A10 Digital Camera 16.1MP 5X Zoom NIKKOR Glass Lens - Silver with 16GB Memory Card All...
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 V 20.1 MP Digital Still Camera with 3" OLED, flip Screen, WiFi, and 1”...
Title
Canon Ixus 285 HS Black, 1076C001
OLYMPUS TG-5 Red 12 million pixel CMOS F2.0 15m waterproof 100kgf load-bearing GPS + electronic...
Panasonic LUMIX ZS100 4K Digital Camera, 20.1 Megapixel 1-Inch Sensor 30p Video Camera, 10X LEICA DC...
Fujifilm X100F 24.3 MP APS-C Digital Camera-Silver
Nikon COOLPIX A10 Digital Camera 16.1MP 5X Zoom NIKKOR Glass Lens - Silver with 16GB Memory Card All...
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 V 20.1 MP Digital Still Camera with 3" OLED, flip Screen, WiFi, and 1”...
Prime Status
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-
Star Rating
-
-
-
-
-
-
Reviews
-
-
-
-
-
-
Type
Compact
Compact
Compact
Compact
Compact
Compact
Sensor
1/2.3-inch
1/2.3-inch
1.0-type
APS-C
1/2.3-inch
1.0-type
Megapixels
20.2MP
12.0MP
20.1MP
24.3MP
16.1MP
20.1MP
Screen
3.0-inch, 461k
3.0-inch, 460k
3.0-inch, 1,240k, touch
3.0-inch, 1,040k
2.7-inch, 230k
3.0-inch, 1,229k, tilt
Viewfinder
None
None
Electronic, 1,166k
OVF + 2,360k EVF
None
Electronic, 2,359k
Lens (effective)
25-300mm f/3.6-7
25-100mm f/2-4.9
25-250mm f/2.8-5.9
35mm f/2
26-130mm f/3.2-6.5
24-70mm f/1.8-2.8
Continuous Shooting Speed
2.5fps
20fps
10fps (4k 30fps)
8fps
1.2fps
24fps
Max Video Resoultion
1080p
4k
4k
1080p
720p
4k
Price
$302.89
$355.00
$497.99
$1,599.99
Price not available
$539.99
Best Overall Value
Thumbnail
Canon Ixus 285 HS Black, 1076C001
Title
Canon Ixus 285 HS Black, 1076C001
Prime Status
-
Star Rating
-
Reviews
-
Type
Compact
Sensor
1/2.3-inch
Megapixels
20.2MP
Screen
3.0-inch, 461k
Viewfinder
None
Lens (effective)
25-300mm f/3.6-7
Continuous Shooting Speed
2.5fps
Max Video Resoultion
1080p
Price
$302.89
Buy Now
Best For Adventures
Thumbnail
OLYMPUS TG-5 Red 12 million pixel CMOS F2.0 15m waterproof 100kgf load-bearing GPS + electronic...
Title
OLYMPUS TG-5 Red 12 million pixel CMOS F2.0 15m waterproof 100kgf load-bearing GPS + electronic...
Prime Status
-
Star Rating
-
Reviews
-
Type
Compact
Sensor
1/2.3-inch
Megapixels
12.0MP
Screen
3.0-inch, 460k
Viewfinder
None
Lens (effective)
25-100mm f/2-4.9
Continuous Shooting Speed
20fps
Max Video Resoultion
4k
Price
$355.00
Buy Now
Best For Travel Photography
Thumbnail
Panasonic LUMIX ZS100 4K Digital Camera, 20.1 Megapixel 1-Inch Sensor 30p Video Camera, 10X LEICA DC...
Title
Panasonic LUMIX ZS100 4K Digital Camera, 20.1 Megapixel 1-Inch Sensor 30p Video Camera, 10X LEICA DC...
Prime Status
Star Rating
-
Reviews
-
Type
Compact
Sensor
1.0-type
Megapixels
20.1MP
Screen
3.0-inch, 1,240k, touch
Viewfinder
Electronic, 1,166k
Lens (effective)
25-250mm f/2.8-5.9
Continuous Shooting Speed
10fps (4k 30fps)
Max Video Resoultion
4k
Price
$497.99
Buy Now
Best For Low Light
Thumbnail
Fujifilm X100F 24.3 MP APS-C Digital Camera-Silver
Title
Fujifilm X100F 24.3 MP APS-C Digital Camera-Silver
Prime Status
-
Star Rating
-
Reviews
-
Type
Compact
Sensor
APS-C
Megapixels
24.3MP
Screen
3.0-inch, 1,040k
Viewfinder
OVF + 2,360k EVF
Lens (effective)
35mm f/2
Continuous Shooting Speed
8fps
Max Video Resoultion
1080p
Price
$1,599.99
Buy Now
Best Budget
Thumbnail
Nikon COOLPIX A10 Digital Camera 16.1MP 5X Zoom NIKKOR Glass Lens - Silver with 16GB Memory Card All...
Title
Nikon COOLPIX A10 Digital Camera 16.1MP 5X Zoom NIKKOR Glass Lens - Silver with 16GB Memory Card All...
Prime Status
-
Star Rating
-
Reviews
-
Type
Compact
Sensor
1/2.3-inch
Megapixels
16.1MP
Screen
2.7-inch, 230k
Viewfinder
None
Lens (effective)
26-130mm f/3.2-6.5
Continuous Shooting Speed
1.2fps
Max Video Resoultion
720p
Price
Price not available
Buy Now
Thumbnail
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 V 20.1 MP Digital Still Camera with 3" OLED, flip Screen, WiFi, and 1”...
Title
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 V 20.1 MP Digital Still Camera with 3" OLED, flip Screen, WiFi, and 1”...
Prime Status
-
Star Rating
-
Reviews
-
Type
Compact
Sensor
1.0-type
Megapixels
20.1MP
Screen
3.0-inch, 1,229k, tilt
Viewfinder
Electronic, 2,359k
Lens (effective)
24-70mm f/1.8-2.8
Continuous Shooting Speed
24fps
Max Video Resoultion
4k
Price
$539.99
Buy Now

 

Fujifilm X100F

Fujifilm X100F

The best compact low-light camera

Type: Compact | Sensor: APS-C | Megapixels: 24.3MP | Screen: 3.0-inch, 1,040k | Viewfinder: OVF + 2,360k EVF | Lens (effective): 35mm f/2 | Continuous shooting speed: 8fps | Max video resolution: 1080p

Featuring a high-quality Fujinon prime lens, the X100F has an effective focal length of 35mm as well as a fast f/2 aperture rating. With its hybrid viewfinder, you have the option of having a traditional optical view or a high-res display which can let you preview the exposure settings effect. A brilliant option for street and low-light shootings, it is a great camera even without a zoom lens or 4K video capture.

 

Latest Price on Amazon:

Fujifilm X100F 24.3 MP APS-C Digital Camera-Silver
  • 24.3MP X Trans CMOS III APS C sensor with no low pass filter and X Processor Pro
  • 8 way focus lever plus the number of focusing points has been expanded from 49 in previous models to 91 (up to 325 points)
  • Built in ISO dial, incorporated into the shutter speed dial and operating temperature is 0 degree Celsius to 40 degree Celsius (+32 degree Fahrenheit to +104 degree Fahrenheit); Operating Humidity: 10...
  • AF mode(single / Zone / wide tracking). Hot shoe: Dedicated TTL Flash compatible. Exposure control: TTL 256 zone metering, Multi / Spot / Average / Center Weighted
  • New np w126s lithium battery; Focus distance Approx. 10 centimeter Infinity / 3.9 Inches Infinity

Sony Cyber-Shot RX100 V

Sony Cyber-Shot RX100 V

An amazing versatile camera

Type: Compact | Sensor: 1.0-type | Megapixels: 20.1MP | Screen: 3.0-inch, 1,229k, tilt | Viewfinder: Electronic, 2,359k | Lens (effective): 24-70mm f/1.8-2.8 | Continuous shooting speed: 24fps | Max video resolution: 4k

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While it’s not the newest model on the block, the RX100 V is one of the best compact cameras available. With a large 1.0-type image sensor and a high-resolution electronic viewfinder and is still small enough to fit into a spare pocket. A fast shooting camera that delivers the excellent image quality and can achieve burst rates of up to 24fps, the RC100 V from Sony is a great compact camera option.

 

Latest Price on Amazon:

Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 V 20.1 MP Digital Still Camera with 3" OLED, flip Screen, WiFi, and 1”...
  • ELECTRONIC VIEW FINDER: retractable Tru-Finder EVF provides sharp resolution, bright self-illumination, and high contrast to view shots and adjust settings through a ZEISS T* coated eyepiece.
  • AUTO FOCUS: World’s fastest (0.05 sec.) hybrid AF system (contrast + phase) which is great for action and wildlife photography
  • AF DETECTION: The most comprehensive phase detection coverage in a compact camera utilizing 315 Auto Focus points
  • SHOOTING SPEED: World’s fastest continuous shooting speed at 24fps3 w/ autofocus and auto exposure tracking to ensure exceptional high-speed photography
  • IMAGE SENSOR: 20.1 megapixel 1" Exmor RS stacked back illuminated CMOS sensor w/ DRAM for outstanding image quality and continuous shooting.Battery life(still images)(CIPA):Up to 330 shots / 165...

 

Canon PowerShot SX740 HS

Canon PowerShot SX740 HS

A camera with mega-zoom at a mini size

Type: Compact | Sensor: 1/2.3-inch | Megapixels: 20.3MP | Screen: 3.0-inch, 922k, tilt | Viewfinder: None | Lens (effective): 24-960mm f/3.3-6.9 | Continuous shooting speed: 10fps | Max video resolution: 4k

Small and slim enough to fit in your pocket, the PowerShot from Canon manages to fit an impressive 40x zoom lens into its compact design along with an effective range of 24-960mm. This means that you can shoot everything from large wide-angle coverage to ultra-telephoto reach with ease. The rear screen has a flip-over tilt facility and works well as an active shooter. The only downside is that there is no viewfinder and the LCD screen isn’t a touchscreen.

 

Latest Price on Amazon:

Canon Cameras US Point and Shoot Digital Camera with 3.0" LCD, Black (2955C001)
  • 40x optical zoom with optical image stabilizer and zoom framing assist
  • 4K video and 4K time-lapse movie
  • 20.3 Megapixel CMOS sensor
  • High-speed continuous shooting

 

Fujifilm XF10

Fujifilm XF10

The best large camera in a compact camera’s body

Type: Compact | Sensor: APS-C | Megapixels: 24.2MP | Screen: 3.0-inch, 1,040k touch | Viewfinder: None | Lens (effective): 28mm f/2.8 | Continuous shooting speed: 6fps | Max video resolution: 4k

With an APS-C format image sensor, the XF10 from Fujifilm is bigger than other compact cameras out there and the sensor is more likely to be found in a DSLR. What the sensor allows an impressive 24.2MP image size and even provides low image noise even when ISO settings are high. While low-light shooting is helped by the 28mm f/2.8 fixed lens, the XF10 falters in its lack of a viewfinder although other Fujifilm options that do have a viewfinder can cost up to twice as much.

 

Latest Price on Amazon:

Fujifilm XF10 Digital Camera - Black
  • 24.2MP APS-C CMOS sensor
  • 3.0-Inch” (Approx. 1, 040k-dot) Color LCD Touchscreen, aspect Ratio 3: 2
  • Standard output Sensitivity of Iso200 - Iso12800. Extended output Sensitivity of Iso100 - Iso51200
  • Bluetooth version 4.1 low energy technology
  • 4K 3840 x 2160 15P, continuous recording up to Approx. 30 Min.Operating frequency[Center frequency]:2402 - 2480MHz

 

Panasonic Lumix FZ1000 II

Panasonic Lumix FZ1000 II

One of the best DSLR-style compact cameras

Type: Compact | Sensor: 1.0-type | Megapixels: 20MP | Screen: 3.0-inch, 1,240k, fully articulated touchscreen | Viewfinder: Electronic, 2,360k | Lens (effective): 25-400mm f/2.8-4 | Continuous shooting speed: 12fps | Max video resolution: 4K

Bridge cameras can be a great option for anyone considering a DSLR but not ready for the size that comes with one. The Lumix FZ1000 II is a great example of this with a 1-inch, 20MP sensor that comes with a 16x optical zoom lens inside a DSLR-style housing. Featuring a 5-axis hybrid stabilizer makes shooting in less-than-optimal lighting conditions much easier. A fully-articulated touchscreen and well as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity are a bonus that makes this an easy choice.

 

Latest Price on Amazon:

Sale
Panasonic LUMIX FZ1000 II 20.1MP Digital Camera, 16x 25-400mm LEICA DC Lens, 4K Video, Optical Image...
  • Large sensor 1 inch 20. 1MP MOS sensor provides excellent low light and color depth performance, making it perfect for wildlife, sports, new or candid shots
  • Leica DC VARIO ELMARIT 16x optical zoom Leica DC VARIO ELMARIT F2. 8 F4. 0 lenses (35mm camera equivalent: 25 400mm). Minimum aperture F11, yielding F2. 8 F11 at wide end and F4. 0 F11 at telephoto...
  • 5 Axis Hybrid O. I. S. Optical image Stabilizer. I. S.) plus active mode effectively compensate for hand shake to minimize Blur during zoom shooting with your Lumix camera
  • 4K video & 4K PHOTO QFHD 4K video in 3840x2160 30P or 24P in MP4. 4K PHOTO 30 fps in 8MP
  • Camera body viewfinder and display high speed (2, 360k dot) OLED live view Finder, Plus 3. 0 Inch (1, 240k dot) touch control Display rotates 180 degrees to the side and tilts 270 degrees up and down

 

Panasonic LUMIX DMC-TZ100

Panasonic Lumix FZ1000 II

The best compact camera for travel photography

Type: Compact | Sensor: 1.0-type | Megapixels: 20.1MP | Screen: 3.0-inch, 1,240k, touch | Viewfinder: Electronic, 1,166k | Lens (effective): 25-250mm f/2.8-5.9 | Continuous shooting speed: 10fps (4k 30fps) | Max video resolution: 4k

The TZ100 packs a larger 1.0-type sensor, a 3-inch touchscreen, an electronic viewfinder, a 10x optical zoom lens, and a useful array of shooting controls into its compact design. With excellent image quality, which it maintains at high ISO settings, the 25-250mm effective zoom range is still very capable for travel photography. Still and 4K UHD movie captures work well with the TZ100’s 5-axis hybrid stabilizer inside.

 

Latest Price on Amazon:

Sale
Panasonic LUMIX ZS100 4K Digital Camera, 20.1 Megapixel 1-Inch Sensor 30p Video Camera, 10X LEICA DC...
  • POINT-AND-SHOOT CAMERA: Large, 1-inch 20.1-megapixel MOS sensor plus 10X zoom LEICA DC VARIO-ELMARIT lens (25-250mm) and HYBRID O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilizer) delivers brighter, more colorful...
  • EYE-LEVEL ELECTRONIC VIEWFINDER AND LCD DISPLAY: High-resolution 1,166k-dot viewfinder and rear touch-enabled 3-inch LCD display (1040K dots) are clear even in bright sunlight
  • 4K VIDEO CAPTURE: 4K QFHD video recording (3840 x 2160), plus exclusive LUMIX 4K PHOTO and 4K Post Focus with internal Focus Stacking allows you to record photos up to 30fps and set your...
  • LENS-MOUNTED CONTROL RING: Manual lens-mounted control ring brings DSLR-like exposure control to a compact point-and-shoot camera body; Temperature: 23 °C (73.4 °F) / Humidity: 50% RH when monitor...
  • USB CHARGING AND WI-FI CONNECTIVITY: Enjoy travel ready technologies like USB charging and Wi-Fi connectivity to your mobile device; micro-HDMI type D (3) and USB 2.0 micro-B provide additional...

 

Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III

Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III

The best compact pro-grade camera

Type: Compact | Sensor: APS-C | Megapixels: 24.2MP | Screen: 3.2-inch, 1,040k, pivot, touch | Viewfinder: Electronic, 2,360k | Lens (effective): 24-72mm f/2.8-5.6 | Continuous shooting speed: 9fps (7fps with AF) | Max video resolution: 1080p

Unlike many other compact cameras on the market that come with a prime lens, the G1 X Mark III comes with a zoom lens, although it only has a 3x range to maximize optical quality. Everything from wide-angle coverage to short telephoto images can be delivered with the G1. With an APS-C format image sensor along with a highly effective stabilization system that works for both stills and video capture, even though the video capture is only up to 1080p. Creative photographers will find the layout of dials and buttons as well as the placement of the viewfinder beneficial.

 

Latest Price on Amazon:

Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark III Digital Camera
  • 24.2MP APS-C CMOS Sensor
  • DIGIC 7 Image Processor
  • 3x Zoom Lens, 24-72mm (35mm Equivalent)
  • 2.36m-Dot OLED Electronic Viewfinder
  • Includes Memory Card Wallet, 32GB Memory Card, 12 Inch Tripod, Camera Flash and Cleaning Kit

 

Olympus Stylus Tough TG-5

Olympus Stylus Tough TG-5

The Best Adventure Camera

Type: Compact | Sensor: 1/2.3-inch | Megapixels: 12.0MP | Screen: 3.0-inch, 460k | Viewfinder: None | Lens (effective): 25-100mm f/2-4.9 | Continuous shooting speed: 20fps | Max video resolution: 4k

Waterproof up to 15 meters, the TG-5 is a tough little camera that’s shockproof up to a height of 2.1 meters, freezeproof down to -10 degrees Celsius, and even crushproof up to 220 pounds. This little camera can stand up to a lot. If you’re the outdoor adventure type, this could be the perfect camera for you. With built-in GPS, compass, manometer and temperature sensor, you can tag this data on to the photos you take as well as a variable macro system, which lets you capture close-ups in microscopic detail.

 

Latest Price on Amazon:

OLYMPUS TG-5 Red 12 million pixel CMOS F2.0 15m waterproof 100kgf load-bearing GPS + electronic...
  • Bright F2.0 High-Speed Lens; Supported Video Recording Format: MOV (MPEG-4AVC/H.264); Field Sensor System with GPS, Manometer, Compass, and Temperature Sensors
  • New 12MP Hi-Speed Image Sensor for Improved Low Light Performance and Noise Reduction; PRO Capture Mode for Lag-Free Shooting
  • Anti-Fog Lens with Sealed, Dual Pane Glass to Prevent Condensation; 4K Video Capture; Full HD 120fps High Speed Video
  • Dual Quad Core TruePic VIII Image Processor; Focal Length (35mm Equivalent): 4.5mm-18.0mm (25mm-100mm)

 

Canon IXUS 285 HS

Canon IXUS 285 HS

The compact camera with the best overall value

Type: Compact | Sensor: 1/2.3-inch | Megapixels: 20.2MP | Screen: 3.0-inch, 461k | Viewfinder: None | Lens (effective): 25-300mm f/3.6-7 | Continuous shooting speed: 2.5fps | Max video resolution: 1080p

Available in multiple colors, the IXUS from Canon has a stylish design that is easy to fit in a spare pocket and take with you just about anywhere. Easy to use, the affordable camera offers some useful features including a 12x optical zoom lens along with built-in Wi-Fi and NFC. The HS sensor from Canon helps retain good image quality at high ISO settings. While there is no viewfinder or touchscreen, the 3-inch LCD is bigger than many other cameras at the same price.

 

Latest Price on Amazon:

 

Nikon Coolpix A10

Nikon Coolpix A10

The best compact camera for days out with the family

Type: Compact | Sensor: 1/2.3-inch | Megapixels: 16.1MP | Screen: 2.7-inch, 230k | Viewfinder: None | Lens (effective): 26-130mm f/3.2-6.5 | Continuous shooting speed: 1.2fps | Max video resolution: 720p

If you spend a good amount of money on a camera, you’re pretty likely to be careful with it and that could limit the fun you have using the camera. The A10 from Nikon is simple to use and comes with a 5x optical zoom lens, built-in flash along with a 16.1 MP image sensor. While it doesn’t come with a viewfinder and the LCD screen isn’t something a professional photographer may use, but the A10 is a camera is everyone can enjoy.

 

Latest Price on Amazon:

Nikon COOLPIX A10 Digital Camera 16.1MP 5X Zoom NIKKOR Glass Lens - Silver with 16GB Memory Card All...
  • This Certified Refurbished product is refurbished to factory specifications, it shows limited or no wear
  • Includes all original accessories plus a 90 Day Manufacturer Warranty
  • 16.1-megapixel CCD image sensor for excellent photos and 720p HD videos | 5x optical zoom NIKKOR glass lens | 2.7-inch QVGA LCD display | Electronic Vibration Reduction helps prevent blurry photos and...
  • CAMERA INCLUDES: Nikon COOLPIX A10 Silver (Refurbished) | AN-CP19 Strap | LR6/L40 AA batteries (2) | Nikon 90 Day Refurbished Warranty
  • BUNDLE INCLUDES: Nikon COOLPIX A10 Silver (Refurbished) | All Weather Sport Camera Case with Carabiner | Memory Card Reader, Card Wallet | SanDisk Ultra SDHC 16GB UHS Class 10 Memory Card, Up to...

 

Best Compact Cameras for Creatives

Choosing the best compact camera for your project shouldn’t be one of the hardest decisions you have to make and with our list of the Best Compact Cameras for Designers & Creatives, we hope we’ve made the process of choosing your next camera that much easier.

Do you have a compact camera that you can’t get enough of? Let us know in the comments below!!

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