Finding the best travel camera to suit your needs can seem nearly impossible with the many options that are available. Well in this article, we break down the best travel cameras on the market this year based on price versus performance and what type of photography they are used for. We’ll be taking a look at products in every budget range. So, regardless of whether you’ve got a few bucks to spare and want the best value or are looking for the best of the best, we’ll have an option for you.
Are you preparing for the next family trip and want a good camera to capture those precious moments? These Best Travel Cameras can definitely help you with that.
11 Best Travel Cameras
1. Sony RX100 VII Premium Compact Camera
The Sony RX100 VII is a high-end compact camera that is ideal for travel, action, video, and vlogging. It is the successor of the RX100 VI and shares the same 24-200mm f2.8-4.5 zoom as well as virtually the same body with a touch-screen that can be angled up to face you and a small but detailed viewfinder that opens up and pushes back down in a single move. The RX100 VII now has a faster sensor, allowing it to shoot long bursts of up to 20fps without blackout, as well as Sony’s latest autofocus and eye detection tracking for both humans and animals, so while it’s technically a little slower than the Mark VI’s 24fps top speed, it’s more usable and ideal for capturing sports as well as active kids and pets. If you require more speed, a new single burst mode fires seven frames at up to 90fps, but because there is no pre-buffering, your timing must be exact. The finest quality video modes remain in 4k at 24, 25, or 30p, but are now supplemented by eye detection, more effective stabilization, and the inclusion of a 3.5mm microphone input – a rarity in this type of camera, but you’ll ideally need a bracket or a lav mic without an accessory shoe.
As previously stated, it faces stiff competition from Canon’s G5X II and G7X III, both of which include 4k video, brighter lenses with ND filters, and flip displays while also being less expensive; the G5X II also has a viewfinder, while the G7X III has a mic input. However, the Sony zooms significantly further and has more confident phase-detect AF whether shooting stills or video, not to mention far faster bursts and higher frame rates for super slow motion. However, if you don’t need the mic input, improved 4k stabilization, or the latest AF modes, much of what makes the Mark VII appealing is available in the older RX100 VI, so keep an eye on prices, while dedicated vloggers may still prefer the earlier RX100 VA, which has a shorter but brighter lens with an ND filter but no mic input. However, if you’re looking for a do-it-all-pocket travel camera that’s also terrific for video and action, the RX100 VII is hard to beat. It’s not cheap, but nothing else gives all of this while being affordable.
2. Canon PowerShot G5 X Mark II Digital Camera
The Canon PowerShot G5X Mark II is a capable compact camera that features a 20 Megapixel 1″ sensor, 5x / 24-120mm zoom, popup viewfinder, tilting touchscreen, rapid bursts, and 4k video. Canon has performed a design U-turn, ditching the chunkier DSLR style of its predecessor in favor of something more pocketable and akin to Sony’s RX100 series. So the fixed viewfinder hump and side-hinged screen are gone in favor of a popup viewfinder and vertically-tilting display. The grip has shrunk and the front dial has been removed, but there is still more to grab onto than on the RX100, and the adjustments have made the G5X much more pocketable than before.
This brings it closer to the G7X III, with Canon effectively asking you to pick between the G5X’s popup viewfinder and somewhat longer 5x zoom versus the G7X III’s mic input and Live Streaming. Couldn’t we just put it all in one body, or make similar variants with and without viewfinders to satisfy different pricing points? Sony’s RX100 VA likewise provides a pop-up viewfinder, tilting screen, 4k video, and quick bursts, but with the advantage of more rapid phase-detect focusing for photographs and video, though the G5X II zooms almost twice as long and has a touchscreen and better grip. Overall, the G5X II loses much of what distinguished its predecessor in the 1in the market, directing those looking for a tiny DSLR-styled compact to the G1X Mark III instead. However, by matching it more closely with its best-selling competitor, the G5X II becomes more appealing to a wider audience. Consider how much more popular it may have been if it had been combined with the connection of the G7X III.
3. Canon EOS M50 Mirrorless Camera
The Canon EOS M50 is a top entry-level mirrorless camera with a 24 Megapixel APSC sensor, confident autofocus (for stills and 1080p video), a small but crisp OLED viewfinder, excellent wireless, and the company’s first mirrorless with 4k video, a fully-articulated touch-screen, eye detection, and silent shooting options. Unfortunately, the 4k is only of limited value, as it employs a harsh cut and only works with less confident contrast-based focusing. I’m also disappointed that there is no USB charging, especially given the battery’s low capacity. However, with a compact yet comfortable chassis, effective touchscreen, industry-leading wifi, solid focusing for 1080p video, and stunning colors out of the camera, the EOS M50 remains an extremely tempting device.
The M50 is marketed as a higher-end entry-level model, yet I believe it is Canon’s most compelling mirrorless to date. With a hot shoe and microphone input, the M50 will appeal to vloggers as well as those wishing to graduate from smartphone photography. Highly recommended.