Advanced cameras and interchangeable lenses are not for everyone. Many casual users may want something that’s easy to use, while still capable of taking amazing shots. While smartphones have largely replaced dedicated cameras outside of DSLRs, there is still a market for point-and-shoot cameras. It’s true most sub-$300 point-and-shoot cameras are pretty much on the same level as a smartphone, but there are some true gems out there if you know where to look.
High-end point-and-shoot cameras typically offer higher image quality than smartphones, better ergonomics, and aren’t reliant on your phone’s battery life. In this quick guide we take a look at the best point-and-shoot cameras out there.
Editor’s note: We’ll be updating this list of the best point-and-shoot cameras regularly as new devices launch.
1. Sony RX100 VII
The RX 100 series is trusted by professionals and photo enthusiasts alike. Its compact body and premium image quality makes it the best bet for those times when carrying all your equipment isn’t convenient. Unfortunately, it’s also pretty pricey at a tad over $1000, but users who take advantage of its full potential deem it worth every single penny.
The RX 100 series is trusted by professionals and photo enthusiasts.
Features include a 20.1MP, 1-inch Exmor RS CMOS sensor, a 24-200mm f/2.8-f/4.5 lens, 0.02-second AF response, 357 focal-plane phase-detection AF points, an electronic viewfinder, touchscreen, 4K HDR video recording, and more.
2. Ricoh GR III
The Ricoh GR line dates back to the days of film and has been on the market for over 20 years. It is known for taking quality images from a compact body, and the latest iteration is no exception.
The Ricoh GR III packs quite a bit in that small body. It has a 24.2MP APS-C sensor, a powerful GR Engine 6 processor, and a 28mm f/2.8 lens. Other features include a 3-inch touchscreen, a magnesium body, a hybrid autofocus system, and 1080p video recording. Its fixed lens makes it less versatile, but the photos it takes are worth the $899.95 price tag.
3. Leica Q (Typ 116)
Leica is known for its great lenses, which are featured in phones and cameras from other manufacturers. Their own cameras are just as impressive, offering great build quality, unique designs (reminiscent of retro cameras), and superb image quality. They are also very expensive, and this one costs $3,782.99.
The unit comes with a 24.2MP full frame CMOS sensor, a 28mm f/1.7 lens, and a contrast-detect autofocus system. Videographers will be able to record 1080p content at 60fps.
4. Sony RX1R II
The first Sony RX1 was a very unique camera, as it was among the first to offer a full frame sensor on a relatively small body. This is why it was released as an advanced point-and-shoot camera, as opposed to a mirrorless or DSLR shooter. The newest version is just as cool, but it’s still limited by a 35mm f/2 lens (albeit a great one).
Inside the camera you’ll find a 42.4MP back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS full frame sensor. It also offers high-end specs like 399 focal points, fast hybrid autofocus, a retractable electronic viewfinder, a tilting 3-inch display, WiFi, and NFC.
5. Canon Powershot G9 X Mark II
Easily one of the best looking cameras in this list, the Canon Powershot G9 X Mark II is also a great shooter. It is likely the Sony RX100’s closest competitor, with specs like a 20.1MP 1-inch sensor, 3x optical zoom (28-84mm equivalent), a 3-inch screen, and 8.2fps shooting speeds. The Canon Powershot G9 X Mark II is also much more affordable at $429.
6. Fujifilm XF10
Another great looking camera that won’t break the bank is the Fujifilm XF10. It costs $449 and features a 24.2 APS-C sensor, an 18.5mm f/2.8 lens, a 3-inch touchscreen, and Bluetooth connectivity. Despite its sub-$500 price tag, this camera can take some truly amazing pictures.
7. Olympus Tough TG-6
Adventure seekers want something you don’t need to baby, and that’s where the Olympus Tough TG-6 comes in handy. It is waterproof (up to 50m), dustproof, shockproof (7 ft), crushproof (100kgf), freeze proof (14°F), and has anti-fog protection. The sturdy body protects a 12MP 1/2.3-inch sensor, a 4.5-18mm f/2.0 lens, and a 3-inch monitor. The tech is not at the same level as other cameras in the list, but this one is way more resistant.
8. Panasonic Lumix ZS80
The Panasonic Lumix ZS80 is another camera in the affordable high-end market, priced just under $500. Inside you will also find a 20.3MP 1/2. 3-Inch sensor and a leica lens with a 30x zoom (24-720mm equivalent). The unit can shoot 4K video at 30fps, and shoot images at up to 10fps.