Digital cameras are an important part of our life these days. Even if you don’t invest in an expensive digital SLR camera, there is a decent camera on your smartphones which can take some decent enough pictures. If you want to upgrade your photo capturing game, but don’t want to spend too much on an interchangeable lens, then point and shoot camera is the best option.
Point and shoot cameras take care of most of the work which you otherwise have to set manually in SLR camera. You just point your camera and snap a picture without any hassle. Also, point and shoot cameras are small enough to fit in the palm of your hand.
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There has been a constant decline in point and shoot camera market. The reason for this decline is the introduction of high-quality cameras in smartphones. Due to this decrease, Fujifilm and Olympus have stopped producing point and shoot cameras. But point and shoot cameras have evolved a lot in recent years. The introduction of higher optical zoom, better lens technology and robust image processing algorithms have made them excellent.
If you are considering a point and shoot camera, then you’ll be spoiled by a plethora of choices if you start researching online. Just when you think that you’ve found a perfect point and shoot camera, you’ll suddenly come across another one with better features and within your budget range.
Top 6 Best Point-and-Shoot Cameras
Let us help you narrow down that list by reviewing some of the best point and shoot cameras on the market.
Canon PowerShot G9 X
Design – This is a well-designed camera and serves the purpose of a Point and Shoot camera because it is total 31mm in thickness and fits into your pocket like a charm. The layout is pretty simple with on/off, play/view, and shoot button on a top plate along with a preference knob which lets you switch between different aperture and shutter settings. Video recording and Menu buttons lie along the touchscreen.
Sensor – The G9 X has 1 inch, 20.2 Megapixel high sensitivity CMOS sensor. This is a pretty decent sensor if compared to other cameras in this range. It can capture a good amount of light to make image quality better even in low light settings.
Optical Zoom – This G9 X is not much good in this department because it offers only 3x optical zoom which is good enough in close spaces, but not any good outdoors if you need to capture a distant object.
Battery Life – Battery life lies somewhere between average and good. With heavy use, it’ll produce 230-280 shots per charge and can extend up to 300 shots per charge.
Value for Money – Currently, G9 X has a price of $$$ at Amazon. Looking at the fine picture quality, good enough battery life and an excellent sensor, it is a great point and shoot camera in this price range.
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Sony DSC-RX10 III
Design – This is one of the weak points of this camera regarding Point and Shoot camera standards. It is 1051 Gram which is almost 2 pounds. Comparing this weight, RX10 III is even heavier than most of the digital SLR cameras. And considering its 127mm thickness, you can only hang it around your neck. Design wise, it is a digital SLR camera in every aspect, but it is a fixed lens camera.
Performance and Sensor – Before we talk about performance, it should be clarified that RX10 III may seem like a digital SLR camera, but it is not. It is a fixed lens camera. Performance is the best you can get from a fixed lens digital camera. Images are Sharp and crisp with incredible noise reduction. 20.1MP 1″ Exmor RS CMOS sensor is a class above all the other cameras in this range. The RX10 III sensor also incorporates a DRAM processing chip and with the help of BIONZ X image processor technology, photo shooting is like a dream come true for enthusiasts.
Huge Optical Zoom – The RX10 III’s 24-600mm1 F2.4-4 fixed lens offer 25x optical zooming ability. This is more than any of the fixed lens digital cameras. With RX10 III camera in your hand, you don’t have to worry about capturing distant, beautiful objects.
HD Video Recording – Sony RX10 III can record 4K UHD videos and 1080p HD videos. It can also shoot 1080p videos in slow motion up to 960fps. This kind of video recording capability is on par with its photo capturing ability. A little compression video format called ‘XAVC S’ is also available as an option to produce lowest compression noise and display finer details.
Value for Money – Although this is one of the best cameras you can find this year, $$$$ is not an affordable price. Advertised as kind of “Point and Shoot” camera, but expensive than many of the digital SLR cameras is really off putting. But considering its amazing picture and video capabilities, which is on par with many digital SLR cameras on the market, maybe this price tag is justified. If you can afford this camera, then go for it, but it’ll surely put a dent in your wallet.
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Canon PowerShot G7 X
Design – Canon PowerShot G7 X has a sleek design. There is a pop-up flash on this camera. The camera is well-built with metal body and solid finish. It weighs about 300 grams and can fit into your trouser pockets with ease. The metal body and clean, sturdy finish give it a very stylish look.
Sensor – The camera has 1” High Sensitivity, 20.2 Megapixel, CMOS sensor. Along with that DIGIC 6, image processing technology produces high quality and sharp images. Sensitive 1″ sensor can capture a good amount of light, so the low-light performance of this camera is pretty amazing.
Optical Zoom – 4.2 X optical zoom is another good feature of this camera. 24-100 mm focal length range facilitates wide-angle capturing. With the help of optical image stabilizer, chances of picture blurriness are substantially reduced in zoom mode winning.
HD Video Recording – HD quality 1080p videos at 60 fps are recordable with this camera. Videos produced by this camera are excellent in details and clarity with no lag at all.
Battery Life – This camera has a reasonable battery life with around 200-230 shots per charge. So you have to plan your picture-taking scenario if you are attending a long event.
Value for Money – Considering the powerful performance and features of this camera, $$$ seems like a fair price. Not every camera can offer this level of compactness and high performance.
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Fujifilm X100T 16 MP
Design – Fujifilm X100T has a classic look of an old SLR camera. Top and bottom panels are magnesium alloy while the front area around the lens gives that grainy look of old SLR cameras. They tried to make it as compact as possible, but fitting it in your pocket might be a little difficult. Weighed around 430 grams, this camera is easy to carry in one hand.
Sensor and Video Recording – The X100T features a 16.3MP APS-C X-Trans CMOS II Sensor which produces some amazingly sharp pictures full of clarity and details. Low light performance is also excellent with highest ISO of 51200. The X100T can record HD 1080p videos with 60fps, and greater than the average bitrate of 36mbps produce a lot of details and clarity.
Optical Zoom – There is no optical zoom in X100T. This may seem like a bad thing, but it really isn’t. With the number of features and power this camera is packing, optical zoom is ignorable.
Hybrid Viewfinder and Autofocus – This is a distinct feature of X100T. It features a hybrid viewfinder. There is a dedicated switch to change between electronic viewfinder and optical viewfinder. Hybrid Auto Focus is another great feature of this camera. Contrast and phase detection technology in Hybrid Autofocus helps X100T focus quickly in different environment settings. These features make this camera stand out among the competition.
Battery Life – This is another highlight of this camera which makes it better than many others. 1800 mAh battery can last up to 700 shots per charge. This is double of what most of the Point and Shoot cameras on the market can offer.
Value for Money – With a price tag of $$$$, this camera is packed with some serious power and performance. So it is worth the money.
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Panasonic LUMIX DMC-LX100S
Design – Panasonic LUMIX DMC-LX100S is a small camera, but cannot fit into your pockets. Maybe a big coat pocket can accommodate it, but it is not recommended. The camera has an aluminum body which gives it a sleek look and solid feel in your hand. The camera fits perfectly in your right hand. There are two manual control knobs on the top panel which give you freedom and control over your camera.
Sensor – The 100S features 12.8MP 4/3″ Type Multi-Aspect MOS Sensor which is large enough to capture a good amount of light. This is one of a kind sensor regarding a Point and Shoot camera.
Optical Zoom – Leica DC Vario-Summilux zoom lens is used in this camera. This lens is 35mm equivalent and offers 3.1 X optical zoom. This zoom may seem not much, but as for the functionality, it works better than most.
Manual Control – You won’t find this feature in most of the Point and Shoot. Shutter speed and exposure compensation knobs at the top panel give you a lot of control over your camera. Most of the Point and Shoot cameras on the market don’t offer manual monitor and have pre-set modes to take pictures.
4K UHD and HD Video Recording – 4K UHD video recording at 24fps 30fps is a great option. You can also capture 8 MP crisp and sharp pictures while recording a 4K video. 1080p Full HD videos can also be recorded at 30 or 60 fps.
Battery Life – The 100S has an average battery which lasts around 250-300 shots per charge. The 100S is average in this regard. Value for Money – Giving its amazing features and manual control options, this camera is worth every penny. The 100S is priced at $$$.
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Panasonic LUMIX DMC-FZ300K
Design – This camera has a dustproof and splashproof design. The FZ300K looks and feels more like a digital SLR camera than a standard Point and Shoot camera. It can’t fit in your pockets, and you will need a proper camera bag or strap to hang it around your neck. Fits perfectly in your right hand.
Sensor – The FZ300K features 1/2.3″ BSI-CMOS 12 Megapixel sensor. This sensor is pretty good in generating amazing details with the help of capturing a decent amount of light.
Optical Zoom – Lens on FZ300K is Leica DC Vario-Elmarit f/2.8 25-600mm Lens which is equivalent to 35mm. This kind of firepower gives this camera a huge 24x zooming ability. The f2.8 aperture gives a significant boost to the image while zooming. Digital zoom can also be used, but optical zoom is enough to capture distant objects.
Hybrid Image Stabilization – Hybrid Image Stabilization is the distinct feature of FZ300K. 5 Axis Optical Image Stabilization ensure a smooth video recording experience.
Battery Life – Battery life is pretty good with 350-380 shots per charge. This is a better battery life than most of the cameras in this range.
Value for Money – Priced at $$$ this is one of the best cameras regarding features and value for money.
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Nikon COOLPIX L840 Digital Camera
Design – The L840 features a sturdy, fast-handling design. Like Panasonic FZ300K, this one also looks like a digital SLR camera. Gripping the L840 in one hand is pretty easy. You will need a neck strap if you are planning on taking it on a long tour. The camera weighs around 530 grams.
Sensor – 1/2.3 in 16 Megapixel CMOS sensor takes sharp and quality pictures. There is not much innovation in sensor technology as it is with rival cameras, but it is a decent enough sensor.
Optical Zoom – The L840 features a 23–855 mm F3.0 – F6.5 Zoom Lens which gives it an enormous 38X optical zoom and amazing wide-angle capacities. Picture quality in higher zoom is maintained by optical image stabilization.
HD Video Recording – Like most of the competition, HD 1080p video recording at 30 or 60 fps is another great feature of L840. Video quality and clarity is good enough, but not mind-blowing.
Battery Life – The L840 doesn’t use Lithium-ion battery. Instead, four AA size batteries are used. These four batteries can last up to 760 shots, which is really good as compared to the competition. Buying rechargeable AA batteries separately are a better option than disposing of old batteries every time.
Value for Money – The L840 is priced at $$$, which makes it a pretty powerful camera when compared with price. Given all the features, this camera is worth every penny.
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Things to Consider When Buying a Best Point and Shoot Camera
A nicely designed Point and Shoot camera would be easy to carry and fit in the palm of your hand. The camera should look stylish and trendy. Also, the zoom button and modes navigation should be easy.
This is the most important feature of any digital camera whether Point and Shoot or SLR. Having too much megapixel is not important if the sensor is not big enough. A large sensor captures more light and produces better images in return. Most of the Point and Shoot cameras have a small-sized sensor, but try to narrow down the list by selecting cameras with relatively larger sensor than others.
3. Optical Zoom
Optical zoom is critical in Point and Shoot cameras. Don’t confuse it with a digital zoom because digital zoom distorts the image quality as you use more zoom. Optical zoom, on the other hand, takes keeps the image quality intact with no distortion at all.
Make sure that the camera allows at least 64 GB memory extension because high-quality pictures take a decent amount of memory and more memory means more pictures without any hassle. Larger memory is especially useful when you want to snap a lot of pictures on a long trip or event.
5. Image Stabilization
This feature as the name suggests, stabilize the images despite the moving hand of a photographer. This reduces the chances of capturing blurry pictures. Professional photographers use tripods to stabilize their SLR cameras, but applying this idea to a Point and Shoot camera doesn’t sound great at all.
6. Battery Life
A good battery life is also an essential thing to consider before buying a Point and Shoot camera. A good camera should be able to produce 350-400 shots per charge. If spare battery option is available, you should consider it if you need more out of your camera.
A lot has changed in Digital Point and Shoot cameras industry. New lens and sensor technologies have immensely improved the picture and video quality. Also, HD video recording is taken seriously among new models because, in modern day casual settings, you don’t just want to snap pictures. But you have to make compromises which are different for different cameras.
For example, if you want compactness and lightweight, you have to compromise on optical zoom and video quality, and if you want better performance and excellent video recording, then you have to compromise on compactness and value for money. No Point and Shoot camera are perfect. So you have to buy one which suits your budget and needs properly.