Value For Money: Getting The Best Gadgets For Your Money

Videos are everywhere and will not go away soon – perhaps even growing bigger and stronger.

Filmmaking gear, however, is notoriously expensive.

Expect to fork over a few thousand dollars to build your first vlog camera kit if you expect to get hold of the best video equipment for vlogging and content creation.

But wait, you might be surprised to find out that there are numerous video production gear that are more affordable and provide great results. All you need is time and dedication to search online for it.

However, we grant you the favor of accessing these affordable products using the links provided to make your research less complicated and more convenient.

Many useful accessories are available for under $100. If you’re looking for high-quality video while remaining within a reasonable budget, purchasing the best video camera under $500 will be an intelligent choice. 

Looking for cheap cameras for YouTube vlogging may be too general, so finding one depends on your particular needs or preferences and, of course, your desired price point. 

But with the plethora of options out there, what often stands out are the most popular and resonating brands, which often make it to the cut, the major downside, however, is the price.

Also, what usually calls for “premium quality” comes at a higher cost.

We aim to highlight the best video cameras within a few exciting categories. 

We can’t cover all brands, shapes, sizes, and functionalities, but we will do our best to provide you with as many options as possible. 

 

Finding the best vlogging camera for YouTube 

You must set your budget and expectations. 

You can decide once you have saved up the funds to use for your camera purchase and how much you are willing to spend to find the best video camera for YouTube vlogging based on your budget and preferences. 

The basics 

There are a variety of video cameras in the market, and something that you must consider based on functionality and features. 

We included each type in our list at various price points – here are some descriptions.

Camcorders

We all know what these look like, and although not as popular among the most common camera types, they still have some following in the video camera world. 

If you are looking for a handy and easy camera, this is something up your alley, and it can be secured with a strap to keep it on your hand to allow you more movement space and flexibility of video angles.

Action cameras

These are commonly used for point-and-view videos with what many call “first person” cameras. 

Usually more diminutive in size, they’re great for travel, versatile, and can capture quite some particular uses.

DSLR (digital single-lens reflex)

In terms of quality and price, DSLR cameras are the most popular for photography and videography.

Additionally, they’re popular because they are compatible with most interchangeable lenses, giving you endless and dynamic customization options (and saving money – although lenses can be costly). 

Mirrorless cameras

Mirrorless cameras are giving DSLRs a run for their money due to the differences in their internal construction (they do not have a mirror), which makes them easier to use. 

As a result, the cameras have better autofocus (AF) systems and a different feel to the pictures, though they are somewhat more expensive.

Point-and-shoot cameras

Many of these cameras resemble what many would call a “digital camera” and offer video capability. 

They’re usually a bit cheaper than DSLR and mirrorless cameras and are great for those needing something smaller than a typical bulky camera.

Set and manage your expectations

This is a significant consideration – intended use – and since it’s challenging to constrain this down to just a few popular services, you must manage your expectations and be aware of what you think you’ll be using your video camera for. 

A sound AF system is essential, especially if you are filming sports involving motion. Other common uses include filming music videos, YouTube vlogging videos, and more. 

Essential camera gear and accessories– Do you already have a video editing system in place or available software to use? Do you need a tripod, a camera and equipment carry case, a lens (for mirrorless and DSLR cameras), and more?

Note: Remember that mirrorless and DSLR cameras have a continuous video recording limit of 29 minutes and 59 seconds. Otherwise, a law states that once it goes past 30 minutes, it needs to be called an actual ‘video camera.’

Options For The Best Video Camera for Youtube Vlogging Under $500

 

Nikon D3400 
  alt="front view of the nikon d3400 dslr camera"

One of the favorite and popular yet affordable DSLR video cameras in the market today. 

For the $500 price-point limit for the standard unit, the D3400 is your best choice which packs a punch but does not burn a hole through your pocket. 

In the DSLR game, the battle for supremacy is usually between Canon vs. Nikon, but in terms of the price range, the D3400 takes the cake.

This camera features an imaging capability of 24.2 MP with a CMOS sensor and an 18-55 mm lens with VR image stabilization. 

For video quality, you’ll get full HD 1080p, and for photography, ISO ranges from 100 to 25,600 with continuous shooting options.

The built-in Wi-Fi and NFC capabilities instantly transfer your photos or videos to your social media profiles. 

Several modes enable you to express your creativity, from night portraits to portraits to close-ups to landscapes.

You will want a versatile and advanced video camera for photography and video shooting in various conditions. 

Especially if you’re looking for a DSLR that’ll last you many years, the Nikon D3400 is one of the best video cameras under $500.

Sony Alpha a5000

alt="front view of sony alpha a5000"

An excellent mirrorless camera for under $500. 

It’s a great camera to own if you don’t want to invest in a DSLR but still want to capture great pictures and videos. 

Sony’s Alpha series continues to dominate in the mirrorless category, especially for affordable cameras. 

Featuring an Exmor APS CMOS sensor with 20.1 MP and a mirrorless design, this 8-ounce camera offers excellent dynamic range, sharpness, and noise reduction for HD video recording.

It’s equipped with a unique image processing feature that will offer quick work on your videos or photos.

With built-in Wi-Fi and NFC, you can instantly download your photos and videos on a computer and share them online with an easy-to-use menu attached. 

Sony Alpha a5000 also has high ISO sensitivity (ranging from 100-16,000), so you can capture excellent images even in low light, making it a highly versatile camera. 

Panasonic HC-V180K
 

A worthy vlogging camcorder under $500

Here’s a traditional camcorder that gives many other advanced types of cameras a run for their money. 

The HC-V180K is a great quality video camera under $500 that will help you shoot full HD videos in all types of conditions. 

It comes with a 2.51 Mp sensor, which is a different type of sensor compared to those found in DSLR and mirrorless cameras that extend to the 20+ range, incredible 90X optical zoom, and 5-axis image stabilization (Hybrid Optical), making it a decent camera for sports with a solid AF system. 

The camcorder captures 1080p Full HD videos for your standard resolution taking it up a notch to rank among the big guns for video recording.

The Panasonic HC-V180K is equipped with a 2.7-inch LCD touchscreen with a simple menu for ease of use. In addition, Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity are built in for easy online sharing of photos and videos. 

It’s great for those who want a camcorder feel, easy-to-use, small size, and great zoom that DSLRs and mirrorless video cameras can’t match.

Canon EOS Rebel T7
 

If you are looking for another candidate for DSLR cameras for vlogging on Youtube for under $500, remember to check out the Canon EOS Rebel T7.

The Rebel T7 is a worthy device designed to deliver videos and photos of excellent quality, considering its price point. 

Featuring a 24.1MP CMOS sensor (APS-C) and full HD 1080p resolution, it has a large LCD touchscreen, a simple and easy-to-use menu, and a great battery life.

Thanks to its unique intelligent auto mode feature, you can combine elements such as light optimization, whiteness balance, exposure, etc. If you’re still taking photos, you won’t have to fiddle with manual settings since the camera is highly adaptable to particular lighting conditions.

The Canon EOS Rebel T5 is another of the best low-priced performance cameras. 

GoPro HERO11
alt="gopro hero11 action camera on 45-degree angle view"

The GoPro HERO11 requires little introduction because it is synonymous with high-quality first-person action videos, just from the brand alone. 

Dig this, the HERO11 takes 1080P 5.3K60 Ultra HD Videos and 27MP Photos with a 1/1.9″ Image Sensor, and is capable of Live Streaming, is used as a Webcam, and is equipped with a fantastic stabilization system.

It is straightforward to use thanks to its large LCD screen and simple menu — you can also use it via your smartphone with the GoPro app.

The HERO11 is built with a Revolutionary New Image Sensor, which provides the most expansive field of view ever on a HERO camera. 

Every shot offers a larger canvas for your creativity thanks to the extra sky and horizon captured. Your footage keeps its rich textures and sharpness no matter how you crop it, zoom in, change digital lenses, and adjust aspect ratios.

This video camera has many creative expression features, such as simultaneous photo and video recording, continuous photos, and time-lapse photos. 

Not to mention the hundreds of mounts and accessories that allow you to customize the fit and feel depending on your use. 

It’s no surprise everyone loves the GoPro HERO11, mainly since it provides excellent quality video capture and advanced features for its under $500 price range.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS50
alt="lumix dmczs50 front view with lens extended"

Making this list as the first point-and-shoot camera, the Lumix DMC-ZS50 is one of the best video cameras under $500 in the market.

It comes at a budget-friendly price yet is pumped with advanced features, such as a 12.1 Mp MOS sensor, 30X optical zoom, 24mm Leica DC Vario-Elmar lens, and a sizeable 3″ TFT LCD Display. 

This noteworthy video camera will allow you to take high-quality, sharp photos and full HD 1080p videos. 

The camera’s live viewfinder will help videographers and photographers achieve a high level of precision and control features that will enable easy exposure, focus, and zoom control. The Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS50 is surprisingly great for a video camera under $500.

Canon PowerShot G9 X

Here’s another point-and-shoot video camera recommendation that’s well within the under $500 budget. 

The entire Canon PowerShot line is famous in the P&S category, and this is one of their most popular that’s praised by many video creators for their everyday content creation footage. 

The G9X comes in a conveniently compact and lightweight body and sports a responsive touch display, superb lighting sensitivity, and raw image quality.

Full HD 1080p video is recorded at 24p, 30p, or 60p on the camera’s MOS sensor. In addition, you can use quick shutter speeds with its 30X optical zoom lens and ISO range (125-12,800).

In addition to the built-in NFC and Wi-Fi, the PowerShot G9 X features remote shooting through its ‘Camera Connect App,’ image sync, a mobile device connect button and a ‘star shooting mode’ for taking additional pictures. 

It fits in a small clutch bag or jacket pocket if you want less bulk than DSLRs. We know there are a lot of video creators who have both their DSLR and point-and-shoot cameras in their arsenal.

Now that we have listed some under $500 cameras, you might also need accessories to complete your vlog camera kit.

Fantastic quality but low-cost accessories

Neewer F100 Field Monitor
alt+"neewer F100 field monitor with hood, showing image of a race car"

It is a cheap 7-inch HDMI monitor that is excellent for composing images and checking your video footage when shooting.

This monitor has a 7-inch IPS display, HD 1280×800 resolution, 450cd/m2 brightness, 1200:1 contrast ratio, 16:10 aspect ratio, and 0.07875×0.07875mm dot pitch is ideal for video recordings – both indoors and outdoors.

Rode VideoMic GO 

This high-quality microphone delivers clear, crisp, directional audio with incredible ease of use and costs less than $100.

Rode designed the Videomic GO with a tight pickup area that focuses directly in front of the mic and reduces other surrounding sounds, ensuring that your subject is isolated from background noise.

With no complicated settings or switches, the Videomic GO is perfect for outdoor video shoots because the integrated Rycote shock mount isolates it from bumps and vibrations.

Flashpoint Pro Air-Cushioned Heavy-Duty Light Stand 
alt="flashpoint pro air-cushioned light stand"
 

Light stands such as this 13-foot model are reliable enough to hold heavy lights while folding down into a manageable size when traveling.

The Flashpoint light stand is also air-cushioned, which makes raising lights effortlessly.

It is also equipped with a combo boom arm provision with a built-in elbow adapter, which makes it a great microphone boom while filming. 

Each unit costs less than $50, so you can have as many as you want without burning a hole through your pocket.

Nitze Lil Stinger II Handle 

 

Top handle grips are handy when shooting handheld footage with mirrorless or DSLR cameras. 

The versatile Nitze Lil Stinger Series is made of anodized aluminum alloy for lightweight and durability, as well as ergonomically designed, making it comfortable to hold and for long-term shooting.

Thanks to the built-in cold shoe, you can also mount microphones, monitor mounts, or other accessories that require cold shoe adapters on the handle. 

Its anti-off pin design prevents the accessories to prevent it from accidentally falling off. Surprisingly, it costs less than $30.

NICEYRIG Rod Rail Baseplate
alt="niceyrig rod rail baseplate image"

This baseplate takes 15mm rods and has a center riser that can be set flush or raised by as much as 50mm.

Additionally, it has built-in rosettes, so you can add extension arms or handles for a more comfortable shooting experience – an essential accessory for the serious vlogger that costs less than $80.

Aputure MC RGBWW Led Light 
alt="aputure MC rgbww LED light 45-degree front view"

Add more light to your filming scene with this mini LED light for under $100. 

As opposed to traditional RGB lights, the Aputure MC uses more than just red, Green, and blue LEDs. As a result, the Aputure MC, which offers two tungsten-balanced white LEDs and a daylight-balanced white LED, is one of the smallest yet most potent light devices on the market.

It can be easily mounted on anything using double adhesive tapes, comes with HSI color control, and offers an astounding CCT range of 3200K-6500K.

An internal lithium polymer battery (3.7V 2600mAh) powers the Aputure MC. The LED light supports USB type-C PD quick charging, and Qi wireless charging is supported to be used with most wireless chargers on the market.

FALCAM F22 Basic Quick Release Plate Kit

alt="ulanzi falcam F22 baseplate quick release system"

This lock-free system makes adding accessories to your shooting rig simple and quick.

Made of aluminum alloy and stainless steel, framed with solid mortise and tenon structure, and finished by CNC machining, the F22 quick-release kit is ergonomically designed to make the overall texture, design, and feel smooth and convenient.

Its specially designed anti-deflection positioning column and holes prevent camera deflection during multi-angle shooting.

It is also equipped with bolts to reduce deflection and support the absorption of unwanted vibrations, making it safe, stable, and secure for any serious filmmaker or photographer who needs the best equipment for the best results.

Each plate comes under $30.

Conclusion

Nowadays, becoming a social media influencer or vlogger is no longer a daunting and costly idea, but modern technology makes products more affordable and accessible to everyone.

Why wait to save money and spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to start your vlogging journey when you can now have an excellent quality vlog camera kit at a fraction of the cost and still churn out compelling and fantastic quality content?

It’s not about being cheap, and it’s all about getting the best value for your money with our list of excellent quality yet cheap cameras for YouTube vlogging.

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