4K Camcorders

4K CamcordersJanuary 2018(Last Updated 12 January 2018)

The best camcorders with the ability to shoot video in extremely high resolutions for superior detail
Compare top brands including Sony, Canon and Panasonic
Every week we rank the best camcorders based on features, reviews and price
We compare: 740 Camcorder Models 30,600 Camcorder Reviews 6,760 Camcorder Prices
We compare:
740 Camcorder Models
30,600 Camcorder Reviews
6,760 Camcorder Prices
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#1

90

Hero 5

GoPro Hero 5

536 Reviews + 17 Awards
Techradar - Best in ClassTrusted Reviews - RecommendedPhotographyBlog.com - RecommendedPocket Lint - Editor's Choice
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£132.00

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1x
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4200 X 2800 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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12MP
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(Unknown)
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74g
Edit
Sep 2015
An impressive value for money and very popular 1x optical zoom 4200 x 2800 pixels resolution camcorder, with an Editor's Choice award from four expert review websites and 13 further awards from other expert sites
#2

88

SP360

Kodak SP360

74 Reviews + 4 Awards
01net.com - 4 StarLes Numeriques.com - 5 StarDigital Versus - 5 Startomsguide.com - Editor's Choice
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£179.00

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1x
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3264 X 3264 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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16MP
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(Unknown)
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102g
Edit
Sep 2015
The cheapest 4K camcorder on the market, with an Editor's Choice award from one expert review website and 3 further awards from other expert sites
#3

83

FDR-AX53

Sony FDR‑AX53

144 Reviews
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£699.00

Bristol Cameras
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3840 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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8.29MP
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(Unknown)
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635g
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Jan 2016
The highest rated video camera under £1,000, with excellent user reviews but representing only middle of the road value for money
#4

82

HC-VXF990

Panasonic HC‑VXF990

3 Reviews
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£629.00

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20x
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3840 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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18.91MP
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(Unknown)
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396g
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Jan 2016
A positively reviewed and fully featured 20x optical zoom 3840 x 2160 pixels resolution video camera, with one of the highest image qualities available but representing only average value for money
#5

79

Samsung Gear 360 (2017)

Samsung Samsung Gear 360 (2017)

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£159.99

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1x
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5472 X 2736 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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15MP
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(Unknown)
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130g
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Nov 2015
A bargain price and fully featured 1x optical zoom 5472 x 2736 pixels resolution video camera
#6

79

HC-VX980

Panasonic HC‑VX980

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£528.99

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20x
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3840 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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18.91MP
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(Unknown)
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351g
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Jan 2016
A fully loaded but marginally out of date 20x optical zoom 3840 x 2160 pixels resolution video camera, with a huge 18.91MP total megapixels but representing only middle of the road value for money
#7

78

AG-UX90

Panasonic AG‑UX90

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£2,054.55

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15x
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3840 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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18MP
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1"
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2.3kg
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Apr 2017
A high image quality and high-quality 15x optical zoom 3840 x 2160 pixels resolution camcorder, with an enormous 1" optical sensor size but representing only average value for money
#8

78

EDGE Action Camcorder

isaw EDGE Action Camcorder

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£89.97

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1x
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4608 X 3456 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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16MP
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(Unknown)
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76g
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Sep 2015
A fully featured and stunningly light weight 1x optical zoom 4608 x 3456 pixels resolution camcorder, with a good price
#9

78

PXWZ90V

Sony PXWZ90V

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£2,999.00

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12x
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3840 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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14.2MP
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1"
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1.4kg
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Sep 2017
A top of the range and recently released 12x optical zoom 3840 x 2160 pixels resolution camcorder, with one of the largest optical sensor sizes around but representing only moderate value for money
#10

77

Premium Pack Bandit

TomTom Premium Pack Bandit

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£232.29

Save £148
Amazon UK
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1x
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4656 X 3492 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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n/a
(Unknown)
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192g
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Sep 2015
A best selling and affordable 1x optical zoom 4656 x 3492 pixels resolution camcorder, with good features
#11

77

GY-HM170E

JVC GY‑HM170E

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£1,320.00

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12x
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3840 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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12.4MP
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(Unknown)
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1.1kg
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Dec 2016
A fairly new and fully loaded 12x optical zoom 3840 x 2160 pixels resolution camcorder, but representing only average value for money
#12

77

PXW-Z150

Sony PXW‑Z150

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£3,099.00

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12x
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3840 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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20MP
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1"
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2.3kg
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Mar 2016
A giant optical sensor size and high image quality 12x optical zoom 3840 x 2160 pixels resolution video camera, with features but representing only average value for money
#13

76

XF400

Canon XF400

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£2,759.00

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15x
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3840 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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8.29MP
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1"
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1.7kg
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Sep 2017
A recently released and giant optical sensor size 15x optical zoom 3840 x 2160 pixels resolution camcorder, with very good features but representing only average value for money
#14

76

HXR-NX80

Sony HXR‑NX80

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£2,249.00

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12x
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3840 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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14.2MP
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n/a
1.3kg
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Sep 2017
The newest 3D camcorder on the market
#15

76

XF405

Canon XF405

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£3,186.00

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15x
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3840 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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8.29MP
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1"
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1.7kg
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Sep 2017
A massive optical sensor size and new 15x optical zoom 3840 x 2160 pixels resolution camcorder, with very good features but representing only average value for money
#16

76

HC-X1E

Panasonic HC‑X1E

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£2,389.00

Save £90
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20x
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4096 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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9.46MP
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1"
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2kg
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Sep 2016
A massive optical sensor size and top-quality 20x optical zoom 4096 x 2160 pixels resolution camcorder, but representing only moderate value for money
#17

76

AG-UX180

Panasonic AG‑UX180

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£2,934.00

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20x
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4096 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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9.46MP
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1"
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2.4kg
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Jan 2017
A relatively new and top of the range 20x optical zoom 4096 x 2160 pixels resolution camcorder, with a giant 1" optical sensor size but representing only middle of the road value for money
#18

76

FDR-AX700

Sony FDR‑AX700

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£1,735.77

Amazon UK
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12x
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3840 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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14.2MP
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n/a
1kg
Edit
Sep 2017
A fully featured and recently released 12x optical zoom 3840 x 2160 pixels resolution video camera, but representing only moderate value for money
#19

76

GX10

Canon GX10

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£2,239.00

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15x
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3840 X 2160 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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13.4MP
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n/a
1.1kg
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Sep 2017
A fully featured and new 15x optical zoom 3840 x 2160 pixels resolution camcorder, but representing only middle of the road value for money
#20

76

360FLY

360fly 360FLY

43 Reviews + 5 Awards
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£258.99

Save £71
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1x
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2880 X 2880 Pixels
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4K Ultra HD
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n/a
(Unknown)
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602g
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Sep 2015
A cheap but 2 year old 1x optical zoom 2880 x 2880 pixels resolution camcorder, with good features

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Today's Best Camcorder Deals

5% Price Drop
{Kodak SP360
74 reviews
£179.00
Was £189 (7 days ago)
Optical Zoom
1x
Max Video Resolution
3264 X 3264 Pixels
Total Megapixels
16MP
View More Amazing Camcorder Deals

Trending Camcorder Comparisons

Sony PXW-Z150
Sony
PXW-Z150
£3,099.00
£711 cheaper
More popular
Better brand
VS
Panasonic AG-DVX200
Panasonic
AG-DVX200
£3,810.00
3" larger
optical sensor
size
A bit bigger
optical zoom
Sony HXR-NX100
Sony
HXR-NX100
£1,699.00
£356 cheaper
Better brand
29% lighter
VS
Panasonic AG-UX90
Panasonic
AG-UX90
£2,054.55
22% bigger
total
megapixels
Bigger optical
zoom
Panasonic HC-VXF990
Panasonic
HC-VXF990
£629.00
£70 cheaper
61% lighter
Vastly bigger
total
megapixels
VS
Sony FDR-AX53
Sony
FDR-AX53
£699.00
Better brand
Better user
reviews
Sony PXW-X70
Sony
PXW-X70
£2,115.00
Better brand
2x lighter
VS
Panasonic AG-UX90
Panasonic
AG-UX90
£2,054.55
£60 cheaper
3.8MP bigger
total
megapixels
20% bigger
optical zoom
Panasonic AG-DVX200
Panasonic
AG-DVX200
£3,810.00
Significantly
larger optical
sensor size
A lot bigger
total
megapixels
VS
Panasonic AG-UX180
Panasonic
AG-UX180
£2,934.00
£876 cheaper
35% bigger
optical zoom
300g lighter
Sony PXW-Z150
Sony
PXW-Z150
£3,099.00
More popular
Better brand
53% bigger
total
megapixels
VS
Panasonic AG-UX180
Panasonic
AG-UX180
£2,934.00
£165 cheaper
40% bigger
optical zoom
Sony HDR-CX405
Sony
HDR-CX405
£198.00
More popular
Better brand
18g lighter
VS
Canon Legria HF R806
Canon
Legria HF R806
£169.00
£29 cheaper
Moderately
better user
reviews
31% bigger
total
megapixels
Sony HDR-CX405
Sony
HDR-CX405
£198.00
More popular
Better brand
VS
Panasonic HC-V180
Panasonic
HC-V180
£177.99
£20 cheaper
Bigger optical
zoom
9% bigger total
megapixels
Sony PXW-Z150
Sony
PXW-Z150
£3,099.00
17.93MP bigger
total
megapixels
VS
Sony HXR-NX5R
Sony
HXR-NX5R
£2,899.00
£200 cheaper
More popular
A lot bigger
optical zoom
Sony PXW-X70
Sony
PXW-X70
£2,115.00
£53 cheaper
Better brand
79% bigger
total
megapixels
VS
Canon XA35
Canon
XA35
£2,167.93
More popular
8x bigger
optical zoom
17% lighter
Sony FDR-AX100
Sony
FDR-AX100
£649.99
£1,465 cheaper
Better user
reviews
14% lighter
VS
Sony PXW-X70
Sony
PXW-X70
£2,115.00
More popular
Sony HXR-NX100
Sony
HXR-NX100
£1,699.00
£1,400 cheaper
More popular
A lot lighter
VS
Sony PXW-Z150
Sony
PXW-Z150
£3,099.00
A lot bigger
total
megapixels
Sony HXR-NX100
Sony
HXR-NX100
£1,699.00
£1,200 cheaper
More popular
Vastly bigger
total
megapixels
VS
Sony HXR-NX5R
Sony
HXR-NX5R
£2,899.00
Bigger optical
zoom
Sony HDR-CX625
Sony
HDR-CX625
£339.00
£40 cheaper
Better brand
34% bigger
optical zoom
VS
Panasonic HC-V770
Panasonic
HC-V770
£379.00
User reviews
are better
3.74MP bigger
total
megapixels
Lighter
Panasonic AG-AC90
Panasonic
AG-AC90
£1,499.00
£200 cheaper
More popular
1% lighter
VS
Sony HXR-NX100
Sony
HXR-NX100
£1,699.00
Better brand
6.16MP bigger
total
megapixels
Sony HDR-CX240
Sony
HDR-CX240
£143.95
£54 cheaper
6.91MP bigger
total
megapixels
14% lighter
VS
Sony HDR-CX405
Sony
HDR-CX405
£198.00
More popular
User reviews
are a little
better
3x bigger
optical zoom
Canon XA30
Canon
XA30
£1,499.00
£200 cheaper
More popular
1kg lighter
VS
Sony HXR-NX100
Sony
HXR-NX100
£1,699.00
Better brand
79% bigger
total
megapixels
Panasonic HC-V770
Panasonic
HC-V770
£399.00
Bigger total
megapixels
VS
Panasonic HC-V380
Panasonic
HC-V380
£247.95
£151 cheaper
Hugely bigger
optical zoom
Lighter
Sony PXW-Z150
Sony
PXW-Z150
£3,099.00
£711 cheaper
Better brand
4.51MP bigger
total
megapixels
VS
Panasonic AG-DVX200
Panasonic
AG-DVX200
£3,810.00
Larger optical
sensor size
8% bigger
optical zoom
Sony PXW-X70
Sony
PXW-X70
£2,115.00
Vastly bigger
total
megapixels
VS
Canon XA30
Canon
XA30
£1,499.00
£616 cheaper
Better brand
8x bigger
optical zoom

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

QWhat is an 'action camcorder'?
AAn action camcorder is a very small recording device meant to be worn on clothing or attached to a helmet. It's normally used to film extreme sports or give a 'first person' view of what the subject sees.
QWhat's the difference between 'optical' and 'digital' zoom?
AOptical zoom uses the hardware of the camcorder to physically move the lenses, enlarging the captured picture. Digital zoom uses software to further enlarge the picture. This means digital zooms can go far beyond the range of optical zooms, but the quality is much worse, and degrades sharply as the image is zoomed in.
QWhat is an 'image stabiliser'?
AAn image stabiliser detects and compensates for small judders and shakes while filming, meaning the resulting video is far smoother and still.
QWhy is a big sensor size important?
AA larger optical sensor produces better quality videos, because more light can be brought into the lens at once, This leads to larger, more highly-detailed videos and photos.

class="c2-anchor p2-h2" id="guide"

4K Camcorder Buying Guide

Although VHS players are long gone, everybody still wants to preserve their best memories. Pictures are great ways to do that, but for many occasions you really need a video to put yourself in the moment again. Or perhaps you are a film maker looking for a professional camera that is not too bulky? Do you post video diaries on YouTube during your trips? Whatever you like to do, there's a camcorder for that.

Of course, this isn't 1997 anymore, and your choices are not limited to Super 8 and VCR. Before buying a camcorder, you need to look at what kind of video camera and quality do you need, how often you will use it and how you plan to watch the videos.

By knowing your needs and matching them to the options available, you will be able to shoot your family videos, that great football match, the concert ever of your favourite band and your YouTube blog too!

Resource ID 2

4K Resolution

The image resolution determines the number of pixels the image you shoot contains. A 4K resolution camcorder will therefore shoot video at a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels - which is very very detailed indeed, and allows for extremely high-quality filming. In 4K resolution, all of the small details in the shot will be picked out in perfect detail, and there will very little blurring or muddy details to ruin your shot.

4K Camcorders are more expensive than their less powerful cousins, but they are vecoming far more common, and the price is going down accordingly. So if you are interested in the best image quality for your home videos, now is the time to invest in a 4K camcorder.

Resource ID 303

Sensor Size

The larger the resolution on a camera, the larger the sensor needs to be in order to capture the video in good quality. While most cameras with the same output resolution will have a similar sensor size, sometimes there are differences. Some 4K cameras for example use 1” sensors but others used 1/2.3” sensors. While a smaller sensor will work for average recording conditions, a larger sensor will show its worth in low-light scenes as it allows it to capture more light.

Bit Rate

In terms of image quality, the bit rate is usually the third item to look at when comparing two cameras that have the same resolution and sensor size. The bit rate describes the amount of data that is generated by the camera when it records. The more data it produces per second of film, the better the image quality will be. A difference between a 24 MBPS (megabytes per second) camera and a 28 MBPS one will be very subtle, but still noticeable. The bit rate is also important for another reason: file storage. At 25 MBPS it takes about one hour to fill up a 16GB card. Recording at a higher bit rate means your memory card will fill up more quickly.

When recording at a higher bit rate it is usually a good idea to invest in a memory card with higher capacity or download the content onto a computer at regular intervals.

Image Stabilisation

Unless you are filming from a tripod or have very steady hands, having a camera with good image stabilisation is essential to prevent your recordings turning blurry, particularly when using zoom. There are two main types: optical and digital image stabilisation.

Optical Image Stabilisation

Optical image stabilisation is the most effective type to keep your videos sharp. Small gyro-sensors inside the lens shift moveable glass elements to offset the motion of the camcorder.

Digital Image Stabilisation

Digital image stabilistaion uses software to calculate the best way to avoid shaky images. It might mean that only certain pixels of the camcorder’s sensor are used for the final image. Digital stabilisation is not as effective as optical stabilisations and it is worth checking the type used before buying a camcorder that id not specific about the stabilisation type it uses.

Zoom

A good optical zoom can make a big difference when you are recording. If you are shooting sports, wildlife, airplanes, concerts and anything else, which is a considerable distance away, a minimum of 25x optical zoom is recommended. Filming people only a few metres away can be done with 10x or even 5x zoom. Optical zoom is always preferred to digital zoom because it captures the full frame at the highest quality. Digital zoom simply crops and enlarges a portion of the image reducing the resolution of the result.

Aperture

This is especially important if you are going to shoot in low-light environments like concert halls, caves and at night. The aperture of a camera defines how big the opening in the camera lens is which allows light in. The larger the opening, the more light is allowed in and the higher the quality of a low-light image will be. Aperture is measured in f-stops, with a smaller number representing a larger opening. For example, f1.8 is great for low-light settings whereas f5.6 and higher might result in an image that is too dark.

Audio Quality

Good quality audio is essential to capture the atmosphere of a football match or the music of a concert. It is important to check the quality of the built in microphone when buying a camcorder. Most budget options will have a mono microphone, which records only one channel. This can make the audio feel lifeless and flat and a high quality stereo microphone will be a much better option. If you are after the highest sound quality, using an external microphone will give the best results.

Memory

Most cameras will offer a certain amount of internal memory. Some camcorders used to have and internal hard disk drive (HDD) but this is now becoming less common as flash memory has become cheaper and takes up less space.

Resource ID 304

The internal memory can be extended by inserting an SD card. If you use your camera for short scenes or are downloading files to your computer frequently, a relatively small SD card will be sufficient. To shoot hours of video at a time will require a large SD card or even multiple cards that can be exchanged when full.

WiFi

Being able to connect to your camcorder wirelessly opens up a lot of possibilities which you may or may not find useful. WiFi can allow some cameras to connect to a smartphone, which can then be used as a remote control.

Resource ID 305

Battery Life

If you plan to record for a long time, or be outside and away from a plug, a long battery life is essential. Battery life can vary between camcorders so it is worth checking the manufacturer’s specifications before making your decision. Batteries can be replaced on some camcorder models allowing to extend recording times. You can replace the camcorder battery with a spare one when it runs out and continue recording straight away.

Camcorder Types Explained

After checking the specifications, you probably have an idea of what you need in a camera. This brings us to the next step: finding the type of camera that has all the features you need. Most camcorders fall into one of four categories:

Mainstream Camcorders

These are the workhorses of the family. Here you will find the camcorders that pack all the basic features, can record footage at good quality and will serve the regular home user very well. Examples here include the low-ends of the Canon VIXIA, Sony CX and Panasonic V ranges. Despite being relatively simple, most mainstream camcorders will work for sport events, concerts, family videos and much more while having a lower price tag than other options. These are the best choice unless you have more specific requirements.

Resource ID 3

Advanced & Professional Camcorders

At some point the good old family camera may not make the grade, and then comes the time to look for models that pack in some high-end features. You will only be in this situation if you have specific requirements for which the good old mainstream camcorder wasn't made for. This includes very low light capture, 4K capability, image stabilisation, HD audio and other specific features. Each advanced camcorder has a different range of features, but most will give you high end results that can benefit both professional and demanding amateur users.

Resource ID 4

Pocket Camcorders

These small camcorders allow you to take them with you wherever you go without having to take a bag, and they are usually very affordable too. One of the downsides are a usually a compromise in image quality. While you can still find good options in this range, there are physical limitations to the size of sensor that can be built into a small camera. For the usual blogger who just needs a basic camera with low-end HD options, this will do. If you need more options or features (including handles), look at mainstream camcorders instead.

Resource ID 5

Wearable/Action Camcorders

If you are planning to attach your camera to something that will move, shake, turn or swim, you definitely need an action camera. The most popular and recognised camera in this niche is the GoPro series, but there are alternatives from Sony and other brands too. Most action cams are waterproof making them ideal for surfing, swimming, snowboading and diving.

Resource ID 6

Finding the Right Camcorder for Every Situation

Home Videos

Taking home videos of your children and family can be done in reasonable quality with a less expensive camcorder but you might still prefer Full HD resolution to less detailed alternatives.

Sports

If you like filming sports, particularly ones played in arenas and other settings where lighting may not be ideal, a camcorder with a good low-light performance is crucial. Look for a long zoom lens and optical image stabilsation to make sure you can capture the action without losing focus.

Video Blogging

If you tend to record mostly at home, a pocket camcorder might be all you need. This is an inexpensive way to get started. You could even consider using a good quality webcam. If you plan to film outside you might require more features like a good optical zoom and image stabilisation.

Film & Documentaries

With YouTube, Vimeo and other online streaming services allowing Ultra High Definition Uploads, a 4K camcorder might be worth considering to make sure you achieve the highest possible quality and prepare for the future. For the best results, look for good image stabilisation, a big aperture and a large sensor that can handle low-light shots. A powerful zoom wouldn't go amiss either if the action is happening further out. Alternatively, if you are working on a set where you have the ability to adjust the lighting and prevent unexpected camera movement, a high-end 1080p camera on a stable mount might be adequate.