Best Action Cameras: Before you start choosing an action camera, you need to decide for what purposes it will be used. After all, the gadget is popular not only among extreme people, video bloggers and tourists, it is often bought for fixing family moments, organizing training for athletes. And the requirements for the camera will be different. But there are important criteria that are paid attention to in any case.
- Matrix resolution: 720 p for family shooting, 1080 p for blogs and 4K for multicopter owners.
- Frame rate: video with smooth transitions will turn out at maximum FPS (at a frequency of 60 frames / sec, plots can be viewed in slow motion).
- Lens: the wider the viewing angle, the more you can see, but wide-angle lenses sin with the effect of a “fish eye”, the optimal angle is 120-170 degrees.
- Battery: with the best cameras it can be easily and quickly replaced.
Now we will introduce action cameras that have a high quality to price ratio, and you can easily afford them on a low budget. Get acquainted with devices that have received the highest possible ratings from users, excellent reviews from buyers on e-commerce websites and at the same time have a very loyal price tag.
For more our buying guides, take a look at the popular links: Compact Digital Cameras, Stabilizers For Action Cameras, Travel Cameras.
Action Camera Reviews
#1 Akaso V50 Elite Action Camera
Highlights of Akaso V50 Elite:
40M Underwater Camera
Superb Image Stabilization
2 Inch Touch Screen with IPS Display
An interesting model in our review, which is actively sold on Amazon.com. In reviews, buyers write that this is the best alternative to flagship gadgets. She writes videos in both 4K and lighter formats. Voice control is available, which, in some cases, is very convenient. Five-axis image stabilization provides a clear and smooth picture. Well implemented distortion calibration function, which improves picture quality.
The model is suitable for water sports, as it has one of the best protection against water. The maximum immersion depth for an action camera is 131 feet or 40 meters. The control panel is convenient. There is no built-in memory, you need to buy a memory card separately on Amazon.com. Before use, it must be formatted in the camera. But in the set there are 2 batteries with a capacity of 1050 mA / h each and many different mounts.
#2 ThiEYE T5 Pro Action Camera
Highlights of ThiEYE T5 Pro:
6 Axis Gyro Stabilizer
170° Super Wide Angle Lens
20MP Photos, Various Photo Modes
ThiEYE annually pleases consumers with a new model of action cameras. The 2019 novelty – T5 Pro turned out to be quite successful. Compared to its predecessors ThiEYE T5e and ThiEYE T5 Edge, the model has very flexible settings and a simple, clear interface. All parameters are displayed on a well readable screen. Even a beginner can quickly master the technique. And bloggers will like the opportunity to broadcast live on FaceBook, YouTube and their RTMP url. This feature is rare in action cameras.
The camera is one of the most compact, its weight of 77 g is not felt on the helmet, wrist or steering wheel. Options are very rich. Aquabox standard, lock without lock.
The model supports shooting video in 4K and less heavy formats at 60 or 30 frames / second. Photo – with a resolution of up to 20 megapixels. There is an 8x zoom. Of the useful features I want to highlight Auto Low Light (automatic adjustment depending on the lighting). Many consider the model the best for daily use.
#3 Insta360 ONE X Action Camera
Highlights of Insta360 ONE X:
Venture Case & Dive Case
“No-Stitch” Editing in Adobe Premiere Pro
Insta360 ONE was replaced by Insta360 ONE X, which took into account all the shortcomings of the previous version. The novelty has become an action camera with fantastic capabilities. The device can not only shoot a spherical video, but also turn it into a flat picture familiar to our eyes.
Its main feature is the most advanced software post-processing. It allows you to get smooth transitions when changing angles without much effort and with impressive effects. The result is a traditional FullHD video from a 360-degree stream.
The device has the ability to connect to Wi-Fi to view pictures, edit and upload video to the network from a smartphone. A computer is not needed at all. On Amazon.com, you can buy super-useful accessories for this unusual gadget: a tripod in the form of a selfie stick, which allows you to achieve the effect of shooting from a drone, a grip-holder for shooting in bullet time mode (slow-motion circular shooting as in the Matrix) and underwater boxing.
#4 Eken H9R Action Camera
Highlights of Eken H9R:
2 inch LCD FHD Display
Waterproof up to 100 feet
Photo Resolution: 20M Burst Photo: 3 Photos
A compact action camera with several color options shoots a very decent video. And this at a cost of up to $ 40! Externally, the gadget is not much different from GoPro. The Chinese love this minimalistic design. The navigation buttons, microUSB port, microHDMI output and memory card slot are in convenient places, they are excellent.
The package bundle can be very different – on Amazon.com, they offer as many as 8 delivery options, among which you can choose a kit for a variety of tasks.
There are also several shooting modes – from Full HD at 30 and 60 frames / sec., To almost 4K. Why “almost”? The fact is that in this case, the device shoots video at a frequency of 10 frames / sec. So there’s no point in using it. Such a marketing ploy. But there are no comments on Full HD – the picture quality is the best for a budget camera. This is confirmed by customer reviews. If you are a beginner blogger, or just look for a solid budget camera – it is in front of you.
#5 GoPro HERO 7 Black Action Camera
Highlights of GoPro HERO 7 Black:
8x Slo-Mo Video
4K60 Video + 12MP Photos
HyperSmooth Video Stabilization
The main difference between the new Hero 7 and the Six is the best HyperSmooth image stabilization. It works no worse than the Steadicam (gimbal). Video shooting is smooth, without a jerk. In the reviews, buyers write that they do not see the difference between the video shot with the stabilizer built into the updated GoPro and the external Steadicam. Writes a device in 4K / 60 frames per second, in 2.7K and 1440p modes –120 frames / sec. And using Full HD, users get up to 240 fps. This is not yet competitors.
Yes, and the photos of the “seven” have become much better, they can be recorded even in the form of RAW. The HDR mode available here is called Superphoto. And video can be recorded video in horizontal and vertical position, broadcast.
The action camera has more functions, and the interface has become easier. Plus, the camera has become waterproof. And this is without additional boxes. A fly in the ointment is also there – this is a battery, the capacity of which is enough for a maximum of 2 hours of shooting.
#6 YI 4K Action Camera
Highlights of YI 4K:
Electronic Image Stabilization (EIS)
Integrated LCD Gorilla Glass Retina Touchscreen
120 Minutes 4K 30/fps Video with a Single Charge
The developers of YI 4K set themselves the ambitious task of creating a direct competitor to the then popular GoPro HERO4 Black. It turned out to be a good model, capable of fixing video with a frame size of 4K. This action camera cannot be called a novelty, rather a time-tested gadget with very good characteristics. But in the number of shooting modes, it is in the lead.
The device has a touch screen with the best features. For processing the video meets a fairly “fresh” Ambarella A9SE75 processor. A six-axis gyroscope saves the camera from shaking. And for the convenience of users, a standard hole for mounting on a tripod is provided.
The battery here has a capacity of 1400 mA / h. It allows you to shoot in the most “difficult” format for 110 minutes. During operation, the action camera heats up a little, but this does not affect its functionality – it does not have any emergency shutdowns, as it happens with warming budget employees. The gadget has been very successfully sold on e-commerce websites for several years.
#7 Xiaoyi Yi Action Camera
Highlights of Xiaoyi Yi:
Support Micro SD Card
WiFi Connectivity (Up to 100 Metres)
Sony Exmor R BSI CMOS 16 Million Pixel Sensor
4 years have passed since the start of sales of Xiaomi YI Action. During this time, the model not only did not go into oblivion, but also gained a line of accessories, received several updates, international certificates, an army of fans and first places in the reviews. At the same time, she lost the prefix Xiaomi: YI Technology is now releasing action cameras without the participation of its successful companion.
This model is called an analogue of GoPro 3. Sophisticated users will recognize the signature features of a promoted “American” – the same miniature “brick” with a protruding lens. There is much in common in the “stuffing” – Ambarella A7LS processor, Sony Exmor R sensor, viewing angle of 155 degrees. Each function has its own indicator, which can be turned off to save battery.
There is a thread for a tripod. Optical stabilization is absent. But in the reviews they write that there is no serious distortion of the video. Another plus is the presence of a large number of sensible third-party firmware for this device.
#8 YI 4K+ Action Camera
Highlights of YI 4K+:
Ultra-Wide-Angle Glass Lens
12MP Photos with 30 fps Bust Mode
1080p up to 120 fps / 720p up to 240 fps
Here is the best sequel to the YI action camera series. Minimum basic equipment – USB cable, battery and manual. A reasonable approach, because the protective boxes, frames and batteries come from earlier versions of YI. But the memory card needs only Class-10. You can control the device using the touch screen. It is bright, without distortion. The sensor reacts very sensitively. On the case there is a screw mount for installing a monopod without a frame or box.
There are a lot of shooting modes: from slow to fast. Supports recording at a specified interval, time lapse, burst shooting. Synchronization with a smartphone via Wi-Fi, there is Bluetooth. The microphone is equipped with noise reduction function. And most importantly – the quality of shooting.
The camera has an Ambarella H2 processor and a Sony IMX377 matrix. Such a tandem allows you to shoot video in 4K with a frequency of 60 frames / sec. There is electronic stabilization. Decent product with Amazon.com in our review. With it, you will get access to most well-known streaming platforms.
#9 SJCAM SJ4000 Action Camera
Highlights of SJCAM SJ4000:
Ultra-Wide 170° Lens
Captures 12MP Still Photos
Camera Housing Waterproof to 100′
One of the best-selling action cameras, and not only on Amazon. In terms of price / quality ratio, it is the best in its price category. Nice design, excellent assembly, even packaging – and that height. It is not in vain considered as an alternative to the legendary GoPro. No other model has received so many positive reviews. The delivery set is rich, designed for all possible action cases.
The technical side is not inferior. The gadget was equipped with a processor / matrix NTK96650 + AR0330, a lens of 170 °. But the microphone is not very sensitive. This drawback is often mentioned in reviews. There is a Wi-Fi module. The display is small but readable. The 900 mAh battery provides stable operation for 2 hours. The device can work as a DVR, supports time-lapse photography. Another plus is compatibility with accessories from Gopro cameras.
#10 Drift Ghost X Action Camera
Highlights of Drift Ghost X:
Drift Clone Mode
300° Rotatable Lens
Motorcycle/Car DVR Mode
This model is intended more for motorcyclists and cyclists – a kind of DVR, which can be used as an action camera, fixing the device on the helmet. Its significant advantage is excellent autonomy. If the majority of action cameras have a battery, at best, withstands 2 hours of shooting, then 5 hours of operation from the main battery are stated here. And in reviews on Amazon, buyers write that this figure is real.
The camera has a good overview, the angle can be adjusted from 90 to 140 degrees. The video device records in the resolution of 1080P / 30 fps, 720P / 60 fps, WVGA / 60 fps. It turns out the picture is not perfect, but the detail is very decent. Videos are recorded in cycles of 1-10 minutes. There is a time-lapse mode. A nice bonus is a lens that rotates 300 degrees. All necessary fixtures are included in the scope of delivery.
#11 SJCAM M10 Cube Mini Action Camera
Highlights of SJCAM M10 Cube:
Ultra-Wide 170° Lens
Captures 12MP Still Photos
Camera Housing Waterproof to 100′
I can’t even believe that this baby has a monitor. It is very tiny – a 1.5-inch. However, the screen works great as a viewfinder, suitable for watching videos, and also greatly simplifies the configuration of an action camera. At the same time, the cost of the device is quite budget.
In addition to the pleasant price, the “cube” has many other advantages – the ability to install on a quadrocopter and shoot time-lapse video with automatic gluing of fragments. And if necessary, an action camera can replace the DVR, because it can rewrite video on top of existing stories.
The lens here is wide-angle, with a view of as much as 170 degrees – almost a fisheye. That’s just the “fish” did not get protection, so you need to use the action camera carefully. The battery in 1080P shooting mode holds a charge of 90 minutes. This is one of the best indicators for state employees. In addition – the camera works very well stabilization based on a gyroscope.
#12 SOOCOO S20WS Action Camera
Highlights of SOOCOO S20WS:
HD 6G glasse len
Waterproof : 15 meters water resistant
Lens FOV : 170 Degree HD wide-angle Lens
This compact action camera is designed for cyclists and motorcyclists. The package includes several mounts that allow you to install the camera on a helmet or steering wheel. The model has found application as a DVR, as there is a loop recording. The product comes with a compact case, which is also suitable for storage.
The assembly of the camera is one of the best, the buttons do not stick. The video quality is very good. The picture is detailed, color without distortion. In the camera settings, you can select various types of video resolution.
There is a function to activate recording by the G-sensor (the accelerometer works well when the camera is flipped). Wi-Fi module works without a glitch. According to reviews, a battery with a capacity of 700 mA / h is enough for an hour of shooting. This is not much, but it helps to record while charging. On a bicycle, Powerbank is used for food.
#13 Xiaomi Mijia Mini 4K Action Camera
Highlights of Xiaomi Mijia:
145° large wide angle
4K 30fps video recording
Display: 2.4 Inch Touch Screen
This is the first and very successful action camera from Xiaomi, released without cooperation with YI Technology. Few reviews do without it. The quality of Xiaomi, as always, pleases. The design is recognizable, the manufacturer uses the concept of the legendary registrar Mijia Car DVR Camera. The matrix is set budget – Sony IMX 317. But due to the large size, it gives a good picture, even in low light. Several shooting modes – from 720p with max. 200 fps, up to real 4K – frame rate of 30 fps. You can say this as one of the best action cameras.
The popular Ambarella A12 S75 manages all processes – the chipset is reliable and proven. It supports noise reduction and image distortion correction. The lens has a viewing angle of 145 degrees. Coverage is small, but the video is as realistic as possible. Electronic image stabilization works fine. And the display is so large that all settings are made through it. A very attractive action camera in every way.
#14 Eken H3R Wifi Action Camera
Highlights of Eken H3R:
170 degree wide angle
4K ultra high definition video shooting
Waterproof housing case, up to 30m water resistance
This action camera comes with a bunch of different useful accessories. Even in the basic configuration there are many mounts, a waterproof box, a screen protector, an additional battery and a remote control (only on the H3R model).
The buyer immediately receives a ready-made kit, ready for use. The video camera shoots at 4K / 30fps, 2.7K / 30fps, 1080P / 60fps / 30fps, 720 / 120fps. The quality of the picture pleases. Gorgeous video capture – 170 degree view. Photos are bright and sharp you can say this as one of the best action cameras.
The screen is small but informative. Wi-Fi control available. The main drawback of the model is the battery. They declared autonomy – 1 hour. In reality, even when shooting video in 1080P / 60fps mode, the battery will last about 30 minutes, and when shooting in 4K – even less. There are no other complaints about the functionality of the action camera in customer reviews.
I hope you have found the best action camera for yourself after this tutorial. If you would like to comment, notice that the article content has not been updated in time, or suggest a action camera I did not include, please use our contact form to stay in touch.
Have fun and good luck!
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