While it’s true that modern smartphones often come with great cameras built right in, that doesn’t mean that more dedicated photographers can’t benefit from a digital camera. These cameras have the advantage of offering more features and higher resolution without the complexity that you’ll find with mirrorless and DSLR models. And the best thing is, you can get a decent point-and-shoot digital camera for under $200.
We’re here to help you find the best camera for your needs. We’ve highlighted 10 of the best digital camera models available in 2020, but we’ve also taken the time to put together a dedicated guide for shopping. That means that you can bookmark this page and continue to use it as a resource for your shopping experience for years to come.
TL;DR - 10 Best Digital Cameras under $200 :
- Nikon Coolpix S7000 16 MP Digital Camera
- Canon PowerShot SX620 Digital Camera
- Sony DSCWX220/B 18.2 MP Digital Camera
- Samsung WB1100F Smart WiFi & NFC Digital Camera
- Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 Neo Classic Instant Film Camera
- Polaroid Snap Instant Digital Camera
- Fujifilm FinePix XP130 Waterproof Digital Camera
- Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT30
- YI 4K Action and Sports Camera
- GoPro HERO 7 Waterproof Digital Action Camera
1. Nikon Coolpix S7000 16 MP Digital Camera
Nikon Coolpix is one of the best lines around if you're looking for a quality compact camera at a decent price, and the exceptional zoom capacity means that you can get great image quality without having to reposition yourself. It comes with a 16 megapixel sensor and the ability to achieve Full HD video at a rate of 60 frames per second with stereo sound. If you want a flexible workhorse that can serve both your photography and videography needs, there's no better option under $200.
And the Nikon Coolpix S7000 is an especially good choice for vloggers thanks to the built in wireless capabilities. You can easily share your masterpieces to your social media using either the Wi-Fi or NFC technology packed in. And there's no need to sweat the results on the Nikon Coolpix just because you aren't a pro. Nikon has included some of the best and most sophisticated autofocus technology available at this price range.
2. Canon PowerShot SX620 Digital Camera
You may have to hunt around a little to find the PowerShot SX620 under $200, but we think it's well worth the wait. The 20 megapixel sensor is enough of an eye raiser on its own, but this is one of the best compact cameras across the board. The 25x optical zoom lens lets you get up close and personal with all of your subjects, and it makes use of intelligence image stabilization tech to ensure low lighting and extenuating circumstances don't get in the way of lining up your perfect shot.
And if you're looking to share your creations with the rest of the world, the Wi-Fi and NFC built right in can help with that immensely. The LCD screen can tilt how you need it, making it easy to capture the sort of shots you dreamed of even if you're working from an awkward or extreme angle to get it.
3. Sony DSCWX220/B 18.2 MP Digital Camera
If the Canon PowerShot is just a bit out of your price range, the Sony DSCWX220 might be more within your means. It costs significantly less but comes with a sensor of nearly the same size. If you want the best compact camera under $200 in terms of good fundamentals across the board, this is a strong contender. It may not have the largest sensor or the most in-depth optical zoom lens (promising 10x or 20x with autofocus), but it does everything reliably.
That's largely thanks to the BIONZ X processor. Combine that with a high ISO range for light sensitivity, and you're left with a digital compact camera that can work reliably well in just about any environment. The video capabilities are no slouch either. This Canon digital camera shoots Full HD video at a crisp and smooth 60 frames per second, and they're easy to share thanks to the Wi-Fi and NFC support.
4. Samsung WB1100F Smart WiFi & NFC Digital Camera
Samsung is one of the most ubiquitous names in the consumer electronics market, but they offer surprisingly high-quality products in practically every field they work in. The WB1100F is available for well under $200, and while both the video resolution and the megapixel count don't approach the best of what's available, they're solid enough for amateurs or hobbyists. There's even a 35x optical zoom lens which is significantly more impressive than most compact camera models under $200.
But the biggest selling point is how much technology has managed to pack into the body of this thing, especially considering that sub $200 price point. Whether you're looking to blast your video to social media or email them to a select few friends, there are tons of sharing options built in. This is a camera that can seamlessly sync with your phone which can then serve as a remote viewfinder, and you can even automate the process of backing up your photos.
5. Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 Neo Classic Instant Film Camera
It's been decades since instant cameras first hit the market, but if Fujifilm's Instax line is any indication, it could be time for a comeback. The Instax Mini 90 Neo is easily one of the best looking cameras we've seen in the market, even if we take into consideration digital cameras that aren't under $200. It's a very lightweight and compact choice that can comfortably fit in even a modest bag.
As you might expect from a compact camera under $200, the Instax Mini 90 Neo doesn't come with a whole lot of features, but the fundamentals are in place. A bulb flash mode makes it easy to capture great images even when you're in dark environments, and there are additionally self timer and bulb models. And this compact camera also comes with its own rechargeable battery so you won't have to deal with the hassle of swapping out AAs or AAAs every few weeks.
6. Polaroid Snap Instant Digital Camera
The Polaroid Snap isn't just available for under $200. It's available for under 100. And while it's a pretty simple instant camera at its core, this Polaroid camera also has style to spare. The boldly expressive design (available in a variety of different colors) does a great job of mixing retro and modern sensibilities, and it sports a design that's both compact and ergonomic.
But there is a decent amount of utility here. A selfie mirror achieves obvious goals admirably, and there are a number of different picture modes available to help you customize your shots without needing any photographic expertise. But the coolest feature here might be the fact that it uses ZINK paper: an ink substitute that dries quick without smears and comes with sticky backing. But if you do decide you want to store your pictures locally, you can expand the memory to offer up to 32 GB with an SD card.
7. Fujifilm FinePix XP130 Waterproof Digital Camera
If you're looking for a reliable but affordably priced camera that you can take with you on any adventure, Fujifilm has a solution for you. The FinePix is entirely waterproof, making it one of your best choices for a vacation to the beach or a day at the pool, and the inclusion of a bust mode function lets you more smoothly and effectively capture action footage even if you're lacking in experience. It's also freezeproof and dustproof and able to sustain shock damage from a height of almost six feet.
In fact, the wealth of features in a camera under $200 are pretty stunning. The touchscreen is bright and vibrant even in sunny conditions, and the autofocus features are advanced enough to offer eye tracking. Fujifilm even took the image quality while underwater into consideration, introducing color reproduction modes and a backlit CMOS sensor that can offer a truly vivid and vibrant view of aquatic life.
8. Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT30
Panasonic is taking a similar position to the Finepix XP130 with their Lumix DMC-FT30. This action camera may not offer the best image quality that we've seen in cameras under $200, but it's one of the most rugged and durable cameras around. This camera can work safely in underwater depths of up to eight meters, be dropped from a height of up to a meter and a half, and work at degrees of as low as 15 degrees Fahrenheit.
All that, and it comes in a very compact frame. This is clearly a camera targeted towards amateurs, and it offers a navigational menu best suited for that. While there aren't a whole lot of features here, everything is easily accessible and clearly labeled, so operating the functions that are here is always a pretty simple and intuitive process. And the presence of an LCD screen on the back lets you clearly preview what you're seeing through the lens.
9. YI 4K Action and Sports Camera
If you want an action camera for under $200, it's hard to argue with the quality of this camera from YI. This is an exceptional price for a camera that can shoot 4K video, but that's just scratching the surface of the capabilities here. This camera also comes with electronic image stabilization for a more level shot even when you're in less than ideal environments and a Ambarella A9SE75 processor for better performance at all times.
This is a highly modern camera with all the basic features you could expect. Wi-Fi is neatly integrated and allows you to do some minor editing of your photos or video before you send it out to your friends, family, or fans. The screen itself is protected by Gorilla Glass - resulting in an incredibly shockproof camera frame - and the retina touchscreen is flexible enough to let you capture footage even if you have to tilt up to 160 degrees to do so.
10. GoPro HERO 7 Waterproof Digital Action Camera
When looking for an action camera, there's no name that comes close to matching the visibility of GoPro, and while you may have to wait for a deal to get the Hero under $200, the wait should be well worth it. This is easily one of the best cameras on the market, and that's true even when you can't pick it up for under $200. Both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are included for more easy connectivity, and it supports voice control to support effective shooting in high speed environments even if your hands aren't free.
It goes without saying that this is a tough camera, but what's even cooler is how small it is. This camera can fit comfortably in most hands, but GoPro has also had the foresight to include a 2 inch touchscreen. It may be small, but once you get around the basics of navigation, it works very well.
Digital Camera Under $200 Buyer’s Guide
Even the best digital camera under $200 isn’t going to be that complicated. Compared to a DSLR or mirrorless camera, these point and shoot digital cameras are going to seem almost like toys. But there are a lot of fly by night models in the under $200 price range. We’re confident that our list really covers the best digital cameras under $200, but keep reading to learn more about the important specs and features so you don’t have to worry about wasting your $200.
Action, Instant, or Point-and-Shoot Camera
If you’re looking for a camera under $200, you have to be willing to specialize in your needs. With an under $200 price tag, you can’t get everything you could want out of a camera, but you can get a more than decent level of performance in a few categories. The majority of cameras available for under $200 can be classified in one of three categories.
- An action cam is designed to be used in extreme environments, and the ability to shoot high speed video, stay level in tumultuous circumstances, and survive just about anything takes precedence over image quality. These cameras are going to be waterproof, shockproof, and dustproof, and they tend to prioritize HD video over still image quality. The CMOS sensor built in typically won’t match other types of camera models under $200, but they compensate for this with great connectivity options and the ability to automate your image capture.
- The instant camera has been popular since the 1970s, but they’ve taken second fiddle to more standard digital camera models as the internet has become more ubiquitous. But that doesn’t mean that isn’t a lot to love here. The ability to print out photos in a matter of seconds is the most obvious advantage for these types of cameras, and while they don’t tend to offer the best image quality around, they’re universally easy to use and often allow you to save photos and videos digitally so you can save them or share them easily.
- The digital point and shoot camera fills an all around role that you won’t find with the two other types of models. While they don’t offer the full range of shooting settings, the ability to change out lenses, or the option for shooting videos and photos at the same level of quality as a mirrorless or DSLR camera, they do offer more shooting options than an instant camera and better overall image quality than action cameras designs. If you want a camera for under $200 with some versatility, a point and shoot is probably the best way to go.
An image sensor is one of the most imprtant components for a camera. After all, it determines the image quality of all the photos you shoot. But how exactly does a sensor work? When you click the buttons for shooting photos, it exposes the lens, allowing light into the case and to be exposed to the sensor. That process creates an imprint of what you’re seeing through the viewfinder on the sensor which is then translated into your photos.
The larger the sensor, the larger the image that’s produced. As such, larger sensors can encapsulate more of a scene with or without an optical zoom lens. If you’re a more experienced photographer, working with a larger sensor will probably be a priority, but most digital cameras under $200 are going to include a smaller CMOS sensor. For the majority of consumers, that won’t be a big deal.
Even more important, you need to take into consideration how many megapixels are packed into the sensor of your camera. The megapixel count is the most important factor in determining the image quality of photos. When you’re shooting photos, the display shows you what you’re look at, but that’s reproduced in the format of millions of tiny pixels. All that you need to know when shopping for a camera is that image quality tends to be better with a larger megapixel count. While it’s not the only factor in image quality, it’s definitely worth paying attention to.
Shopping for digital cameras under $200 often means sacrificing either video for image resolution or vice versa, but if you’re looking to shoot videos, you’ll definitely want to prioritize the display resolution. A good film camera offers at least a 1080p resolution, but today you can find decent cameras that can display 4K videos for under $200. 4K is four times the resolution of 1080p, and it’s rapidly becoming the new standard for video quality. If you’re serious about seeking out a video focused camera you’ll love, we suggest opting in for a 4K model.
The other factor to consider is the frame rate. Most cameras are going to offer frame rates of 30 or 60 frames per second, but a rare few models (typically out of the $200 price range for cameras) can shoot at 120 frames per second. FPS essentially translates into how smooth the camera display is. That makes fps integral for shooting high speed footage, but it won’t matter that much to a significant portion of customers.
If you’re using a DSLR or mirrorless camera, you have a lot of options for manual shooting settings, but if you’re buying a compact camera on a budget, you’ll probably have to rely on the autofocus system along with dedicated shooting settings. Autofocus makes use of a motor, a sensor, and a control system to determine the distance to the chosen subject and focus in accordingly. It’s a greatly simplified process that reduces the need to handle elements of the exposure triangle individually and lets you capture photos at greater speed.
The autofocus systems on these budget cameras aren’t going to be able to compete with more advanced systems, but that doesn’t mean that you’re out of luck. Look for autofocus that offers as many AF points as possible, so you can more accurately capture your subject in less time. Also look for high speed autofocus so that fast moving subjects can be captured with a tighter focus and less risk of unwanted blur.
Point and shoot, action, and instant cameras don’t come with interchangeable lenses, and that means that you’re stuck with what you’ve got. For that reason, the zoom quality is pretty important. With a decent zoom lens, you have a lot more tools in your kit for capturing interesting photos, and you can zero in on subjects without having to get up close and personal.
Most cameras offer both an optical zoom lens and a digital zoom setting. The optical zoom lens allows you to zoom in manually with your own eye, and it produces a zoomed in image by focusing the lens itself in tighter. By contrast, a digital zoom is handled without human intervention. Rather than naturally capture your photo as the lens sees it, it zeroes in on a smaller portion of the photo and then magnifies it to provide a recreation of the zoom quality. Optical zoom quality should be your top priority, but having digital zoom is great for macro photography.
What’s the fun in taking photos if you can’t share them with friends and family? Most modern cameras come with some kind of wireless connectivity option. Bluetooth lets you connect your camera directly to your phone so you can more easily backup photos, upload them to your social media, and use your phone to remotely control your camera.
Wi-Fi is far more common, and while it’s also a more versatile choice, it requires that you be in the range of a Wi-Fi network. With Wi-Fi, you can share your photos and videos directly to your favorite social media services, and many wireless internet enabled cameras come with additional wireless features like geotagging, automatic backup of your files, and photo editing services built right in.
Sometimes wireless internet cameras also offer NFC support. Short for “Near Field Communication”, NFC lets you tap your camera directly against a compatible device, and it will immediately tether the two together. It’s a convenient choice but generally plays second fiddle to WiFi and Bluetooth.
If you’re regularly on the move and looking for the best camera, compact design is going to be important. All of the models on our list are compact, but they can vary some in terms of exactly how compact they are. If you want to find a camera that can fit in your purse or your pocket, you may want to pay closer attention to the dimensions. And if you’re trying to buy an inexpensive camera for your kids, you’ll want to make sure to seek out a model that is more lightweight and can be held comfortably in smaller hands.
Frequently Asked Questions
What’s the Best Digital Camera Under $200?
It’s hard to pass on the Canon PowerShot SX620. While you may have to wait a bit to find it for under $200, it offers the highest image resolution of any camera on our list as well as the capabilities to shoot 1080p footage at a rate of up to 60 frames per second. And with decent high speed performance and convenient wireless options, it’s an easy choice to add to your Amazon wish list.
What is the Best Digital Camera for under $150?
The Fujifilm FinePix is one of the most durable cameras you can find anywhere, and that’s especially impressive since it’s available for under $150. It may not offer the best image or video quality, it’s able to survive just about anything, and it comes with a whole boatload of different shooting modes. If it’s not exactly what you’re looking for, you can also take a look at the Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 Neo Classic which is also available for less than $150.
What is a Good Inexpensive Digital Camera?
What makes a good inexpensive digital camera is largely an issue of personal preference. While you should prioritize either image or video resolution, there are also a ton of different modes and features to consider. Our guide above highlights 10 of the best cameras under $200, and we’re pretty confident you’ll find something you’ll love there.
What is the Best Digital Camera for under $100?
The Polaroid Snap is currently available for right around $70, and it’s easily the best value available today. The combination of a simple design, low price, and cool film format make it one of the ideal choices for kids, but anyone looking for an easy to use camera can find something to love here.
Shopping for the latest gadgets doesn’t have to be a trial or an intimidating process. Our above guide should provide you with all the information you need to buy a budget camera, but if you want to know more about the more complex components of camera use, you can get on the level by taking a gander at our ultimate guide to mirrorless cameras. And if you’re ever looking for advice on how to shop for a consumer electronic device, we invite you to come back and check out the rest of our guides.If you liked our article on digital cameras under $200, please share and comment below what your favorite product is.