5 Best Action Cameras In 2021 | Buying Guide
Are You Looking for the Best Action Cameras?
Today we’ll talk about which are the five best picks, how to choose the correct product, and what you should look at before buying. We write these products based on their price, quality, durability, performance, and more. If you’d like to see their price and find out more information, you can check out the links in the table down below to make it easier.
|On top of the list, we have the GoPro HERO8 which like its predecessor that we talked about a while ago, delivers a superior recording experience. However, it is upgraded to the brim with a new microphone, superb companion app, delicious image stabilization, great new modes, and a lot of new features that’ll impress even the most nit-picky users.||Check On Amazon
DJI Osmo Action
|The runner-up on this list is the excellent DJI Osmo Action which is one of the best replacements for a GoPro this action camera is packed with some interesting features, including the beautiful display, superb video quality, a solid image stabilization system, and a wide range of features that we’ll talk about in a moment.||Check On Amazon
GoPro Hero 7
|For those who want to get the absolute best for their money. I recommend the GoPro Hero 7 which might not be the latest model but delivers amazing value for the price. It’s a great action camera that’s very portable, has amazing image stabilization features as a great set of features and 4k resolution. It has become the friend of many bloggers out there.||Check On Amazon
|Next up, we have an interesting kind of action camera a 360 camera that delivers amazing versatility in its package, the GoPro MAX this camera will deliver amazing footage with its 5.6 K resolution, 360-degree video, superb reframing on-camera stitching features image stabilization and fits in with most of the bounce in the company’s lineup.||Check On Amazon
|This list with a decent action camera coming in from a brand that delivers some excellent budget products, Akaso EK7000 pro this camera will deliver you all the features and qualities you might want in an action camera without putting a strain on your budget in as 4K resolution for video, 16-megapixel stills, a great set of accessories in the package, ease of use and so much more.||Check On Amazon
Things to Consider Before Buying
Before looking at our best picks for today’s article, I want to discuss what you should look at before buying.
When buying action cameras, you want to get the camera with the highest video quality you can afford. And this is absolutely crucial to mobile devices. Just for the sake of only one, get your money’s worth. There are cameras with different video qualities these days, the highest and the best of them being 4K resolution.
However, you’ll also spot full HD and HD resolution cameras out there. Then again, you should know that different manufacturers and price points can mean various video qualities despite having the same resolution. This is due to features like lens distortion, correction, image stabilization, or some kind of image processing engine that improves its performance.
This is one of the most crucial features, in my opinion, because it will drastically improve the performance of your camera. There are two main types of video and photo stabilization. Most of the action cameras in the market have some sort of anti-shake photo stabilization feature. However, the most important for us is video stabilization.
It won’t matter if you have the best resolution. If image stabilization is Poor during video then you shouldn’t consider that camera since it’s an action camera. After all, check for cameras that have GYRO or optical image stabilization features to get the best performance.
Your budget is always important when buying a camera. However, when it comes to action cameras, there’s not a lot of gap between the budget price and some better midrange options. So unless you’re short on funds, wait to invest in a better model that will deliver better value for the money.
Then again, some interesting models deliver great performance and features at a budget price, but they are really rare.
I always recommend opting for the package that offers enough accessories for your needs or has a great range of compatible accessories available. A big plus, as if the action camera in question has universal accessories that you can use. Don’t forget the mounting options and don’t compromise on quality.
This model is the best overall for us. It gets a perfect score in all categories.
On top of the list, we have the GoPro HERO8 which like its predecessor that we talked about a while ago, delivers a superior recording experience. However, it is upgraded to the brim with a new microphone, superb companion app, delicious image stabilization, great new modes, and a lot of new features that’ll impress even the most nit-picky users. Just like its predecessors, the GoPro HERO8 is extremely durable with its classic rectangular body shape, it has the same depth of waterproofing down to 10 meters.
It has some interesting upgrades though, such as better shock resistance and the Corning Gorilla Glass that gives it a better impact resistance. The device now also has two foldable hinges that are named fingers for use in the new mounts. The biggest improvement made in the GoPro HERO8 though is the forward-facing microphone that improves and captures the sound excellently, even at very high wind speeds.
The device is also backed with an excellent 1220 mAh battery that has a better lifespan of about 50 minutes of continuous recording in 4K resolution, you can record for two hours, though if you choose to record in full HD or in the time well video mode. The video quality is superb on this device. However, there are some amazing improvements made in the HDR and night mode quality, which has been something that a lot of users wanted.
It still can’t reach the photograph quality of cameras, but it’s pretty good. Overall, it has tons of interesting video recording options, such as the ultra-wide lens that records 4K video at 60 frames per second but then again, you can record at 120 frames per second at 2.7 K resolution, the best image stabilization in the market and everything else. The GoPro HERO8 won’t disappoint you.
- The new design does not require special housing for the mounts
- Image enhancement
- Practical new design
- Simple post-production through the app
- Automated horizon level
- Battery and card side access
- Crisp Touch LCD
- It may not be as rugged as previous GoPro cameras
- Heats up during recording
- The front-facing display is only available with aftermarket devices
- Battery life is acceptable
- Incredible voice commands
- Transferring Wi-Fi video may take some time
- Small, 4: 3 LCD screen
Before we talk about the best model overall, let’s look at the runner-up for this list.
The runner-up on this list is the excellent DJI Osmo Action which is one of the best replacements for a GoPro this action camera is packed with some interesting features, including the beautiful display, superb video quality, a solid image stabilization system, and a wide range of features that we’ll talk about in a moment. It also has a very competitive price and delivers great value for your money.
So let’s check it out from the design perspective, the DJI Osmo action has the classic action camera look resembling closely a GoPro Hero the large lens in front of the display in the back, and the mounting system that’s very attractive for the majority of the users. The difference, though, is the excellent two-tone finish with a metal casing and grippy textured wrapping to make it a superb choice for everyone. It’s also very compact and lightweight and despite that the 1.4-inch screen is great with its pixel density of 300 PPI and a max brightness of 715 nits resulting in visibility even under direct sunlight.
On the right side of the device, you’ll see a flat that covers the USB port and the micro SD slot. On the base, you’ll see the latches that release the battery. I should mention that DGI Osmo’s action delivered a superb image quality that’s comparable to its super high-end competitors, making sure you get superb content every time. I was particularly impressed by the performance of the Rocksteady Image Stabilization System that worked wonders.
Moving on, the DJI Osmo action can shoot 4K content at 30 frames per second and 43 aspect ratio. However, you can go up to 60 frames per second at the 16 to 9 aspect ratio and if you choose to go down to 1080p or 720p you can go up to 240 frames per second, resulting in super slow motion shots that are amazing.
- Rough, waterproof
- Stable 4K footage up to 60fps
- Slow at 1080p 240fps
- Easily replaceable filters
- Supports HDR and flat profiles
- Displays front and back colors
- Filters added
- Battery time can be improved
- HDR video is not stable
- Stability is not as good as Go Pro
- No tripod socket
Read Also: Best DSLR Cameras
Next up, we have a model which gives you the best value for your money.
For those who want to get the absolute best for their money. I recommend the GoPro Hero 7 which might not be the latest model but delivers amazing value for the price. It’s a great action camera that’s very portable, has amazing image stabilization features as a great set of features and 4k resolution. It has become the friend of many bloggers out there. And I think you have a good time with this camera.
If you’ve seen or used a GoPro from the Hero series before, you’ll be no stranger to the Hero 7 the company hasn’t made changes to the design for a long time now and I don’t think it’s necessary as it’s a fan favorite and works wonders in terms of functionality and convenience. The biggest difference is the upgraded black finish and a microphone membrane that improves the overall sound quality and reduces the wind vibration sound that’s very annoying.
The rubberized finish of the body allows you to get a good grip on it and the waterproofing is good down to 10 meters on the water on the back of the camera, you’ll spot a 2-inch touchscreen panel that’s very bright and detailed, especially for a camera of this size. There is some learning curve to be taken with this one, but I don’t think it’s anything significant. It’s equipped with a lot of features. However, the biggest and most important one, in my opinion, is the hyper smooth. This feature enhances the electronic image stabilization technology of the device by combining software and hardware features.
It can also record 4K content at 60 frames per second at the time warp feature is extremely cool as it allows you to create time-lapse videos. A superb option for content creators in the video quality department it’s amazing has great sharpness rich colors with good natural tones it works well in every ambient and I reckon that you’ll create some beautiful content with this one.
- Crazy smooth video stability
- Easy to use touch screen UI
- Excellent 4K video and image feature
- Direct streaming has added a new way of sharing
- Waterproof without the need for a case
- Large range of mounts and accessories
- No battery upgrade
- Can struggle with voice commands
- Minor hardware improvements for upgrade users
- Can be very hot when recording 4K
Best 360 Action Camera
Moving up we have the most versatile model out there. Let’s take a look.
Next up, we have an interesting kind of action camera a 360 camera that delivers amazing versatility in its package, the GoPro MAX this camera will deliver amazing footage with its 5.6 K resolution, 360-degree video, superb reframing on-camera stitching features image stabilization and fits in with most of the bounce in the company’s lineup. While it’s a bit more expensive, I think it’s a great addition to your arsenal. If you know the GoPro series, you probably expect the same rectangular body shape. However, this one is a bit different in that aspect. For example, it’s equipped with a super colorful 1.7-inch touchscreen display.
That’s great for previewing your videos or photos and navigating the menu on the device. It’s also extremely durable overall, and even without a case, it can be submerged underwater down to five meters, which is amazing. In addition to all this, the device is packed with a small pair of mounting arms for the tripod, mounting the fold flush to the body where you don’t need them. This makes the GoPro MAX compatible with all other mounts. And the GoPro range so if you have one, you’re all set to go the GoPro MAX is packed with a large 1660 mAh battery so that’s necessary to keep both lenses up and running at all times.
On top of that, the advanced on-camera processing will also put some strain on your battery life. However, it delivers about 50 minutes of continuous use with 360-degree recording at Max resolution. But you can increase that easily by opting for different settings. I’d invest in some spare batteries, though, to keep things safe.
The biggest selling point of the GoPro MAX is that it delivers 360-degree video at 5.6 K resolution and to the video, at 1440p or 1080p resolution 360-degree videos are shot in either 24 or 30 frames per second and normal videos are up to 60 frames per second. This action camera can take stills as well, with its amazing image stitching at 16 points 6 megapixels 360 degrees, and 5.5 megapixels in normal mode. Definitely worth your time and hard-earned money.
- 360-degree capture
- Also acts as a single-lens camera
- Powerful stability
- Great camera audio
- Waterproof without any case
- The effective solution is 1080p
- Single-lens captures top at 60fps
- More editing time is needed to get the best results from spherical footage
Best Budget Action Camera
We are going to start this list with the best budget option that you can get your hands on.
This list with a decent action camera coming in from a brand that delivers some excellent budget products, Akaso EK7000 pro this camera will deliver you all the features and qualities you might want in an action camera without putting a strain on your budget in as 4K resolution for video, 16-megapixel stills, a great set of accessories in the package, ease of use and so much more. Without further ado, let’s take a closer look. They are Akaso EK7000 has a classic action camera designed with a rectangular boxy shape, doesn’t actually stand out with its design.
And I think it’s a good choice at the manufacturer’s opted for a simple design to keep the costs low. It has just four buttons on its body that include the shutter button and a button for menu mode button that has a great function of swapping between different shooting modes, including video photo burst and settings are also the up and down buttons for navigation in the menu. In the package of the device, you will spot a waterproof casing.
That’s good overall, but you should know that without it the device can’t handle any water. I should mention that the Akaso EK7000 is extremely easy to use. Actually, just like most action cameras out there, there’s built-in Wi-Fi connectivity with the device that can be enabled quickly via the settings menu. After you do that, you can use the remote control that’s included in the package of the device, which is super convenient, to say the least.
But video performance of the Akaso EK7000 is pretty good as it can record video at different resolutions, including full HD at 60 and 30 frames per second 4K at 25 FPS, 2.7 K at 30 FPS, and 720p at 120 and 160 FPS switching between them was quite easy as well. I have to note that the quality of the video capture is great with nice sharpness, colors, and angles. The audio is good as well, but the waterproof casing muddles it up a bit, complete with the electronic image stabilization system. You’ll have a blast with this device.
- 2 “IPS display
- 4k video output
- 16MP image feature
- Waterproof to a depth of 40 meters
- Includes 2 x 1050mAh batteries
- No zoom
Thanks for reading, I hope you like the article if you found it helpful. Please remember to leave a comment on my blog to see more articles like this in the future. If you have any questions related to these products, you can leave a comment below and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.