If you’re starting your streaming business, you’ll need a camera. However, this can be a daunting task. Good cameras can range from under $50, to thousands of dollars. The right camera can make a big difference for your project. Some projects are suited for a super high quality DSLR or video camera capable of 1080p or even 4K quality video. Other projects are fine with lower quality video and focus on ease of use, and plug and play technology.

After you’ve picked out your camera you might also need a good microphone. Some cameras have built in microphones, and some don’t. And even those that do have built in microphones don’t have the greatest quality. If you’re interested in learning more about the best microphones for streaming and home recording, check out our article: Top 7 Microphones for recording audio and videos at home

Let’s look at the Best Cameras for YouTube, Streaming, Social Media, Udemy and more.

  1. iPhone, Samsung, or other smartphone

Let’s start here. Most smart phones built in the last few years have 1080p HD video recording quality or even better. If you’re looking to start recording videos on a budget, you may have something in your pocket to start with.

Let’s look at the iPhone 10 or iPhone X that came out in 2017. It includes the following video recording specs:

  • 4K video recording at 24 fps, 30 fps, or 60 fps
  • 1080p HD video recording at 30 fps or 60 fps
  • 720p HD video recording at 30 fps

Depending on the phone you have and the apps you’re using, you might not be able to live stream efficiently with a smart phone. However, if you’re looking to record video and upload to a platform like YouTube later, then an old smart phone might be the best place to start, and it may cost you nothing!

2. Canon EOS Rebel T7 DSLR

If you’re looking to record high quality video then your best bet may be to find a DSLR. If you’re new to video cameras then you might be surprised to have a “picture” camera recommended over a camcorder or video camera, but most DSLRs shot in high quality 1080p, have great video recording options, and are much more versatile than even video cameras. You might be surprised to learn how many YouTube channels use DSLRs and not video cameras.

Canons are often at the top of the range with it comes to camera quality and the EOS Rebel is no exception. It has a very easy to use interface, long battery life, has a 24.1 Megapixel sensor, and shots in full HD.

Another great feature of the Canon is that it has the ability to become a webcam, something not every DSLR easily offers.

You can get this Canon EOS Rebel for just $449.99, a great price for a quality DSLR camera. (Click Here to Shop)

3. Panasonic LUMIX G95 20.3 Megapixel Mirrorless Camera

Next on the list is another DSLR, the Panasonic Lumix. The Lumix G95 is another popular choice for YouTubers and online content creators. Similar to the Canon, it has an easy to use interface and records in high quality HD. This camera even has 4K recording capabilities.

Another great feature is the built in Bluetooth. This enables shutter release and video record start/stop via a smartphone or tablet using the Panasonic app. You can also use the Panasonic Image App for Android/iOS to control functions like zoom and focus and to share your images on social media via Wi Fi. If you’re an individual without a camera crew, this gives you a ton of control without getting up from your work station.

The Panasonic Lumix G95 comes in at $797, and is well worth the sub-$1,000 mark. (Click Here to Shop)

4. Nikon D3500 DSLR Camera

The next DSLR on our list is the Nikon D3500, and more specifically the Camera Bundle you can purchase on Amazon. If you’re looking at getting started with a new recording setup, you need more than just the camera. You need a tripod, SD memory cards, extra battery, and options like different lens'. This Bundle comes with all of that.

The Nikon shots in high quality 1080p HD, which is perfect for online videos. But it also includes:

  • Nike D3500 Camera
  • Extra 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR Lens – F-Mount Lens
  • Tripod
  • 2 Memory Cards,
  • Lens Caps
  • Carrying Case
  • Extra Battery
  • Lens Filters

At just $659 for the whole package, this is an amazing deal to get you setup for recording high quality videos. (Click Here to Shop)

5. Panasonic LUMIX FZ300 Long Zoom Digital Camera

Next on the list is the Panasonic Lumix FZ300. This one comes in a little less than it’s more popular sister, the Lumix G95, but has a lot of similar features, including 4K video quality. This camera is only 12.1 Megapixel, which means you won’t have much range as the 20 Megapixel G95, but if you’re in a small area with the camera close to you, this might work.

It also lacks some other features like the Bluetooth option, but if you’re looking for cost savings you can certainly manage without that.

The Lumix FZ300 can be picked up for just $447.99, making it one of the few options for 4K quality video for under $500. (Click Here to Shop)

6. Canon VIXIA HF R800 Portable Video Camera Camcorder

Moving into the portable camcorder space we come across the Canon Vixia. The biggest advantage of a Camcorder is the size, weight, and portability. Not that you couldn’t carry a DSLR around, but they can be heavy and the large lens make it hard to take on the road.

The Canon Vixia will give you a really simple point-and-shoot option with the ability to export to and SD memory card. The quality won’t be the same as a 4K Canon or G95, but at just $289 you have a cheaper option for someone you needs a portable camera. (Click Here to Shop)

7. Canon XA11 Professional Camcorder

Looking for the portability of a camcorder, but the quality of the a DSLR? Try the Canon XA11 Professional Camcorder. This professional camera can be handled by one person, shots in HD, and has all sorts of extras that you generally see on a DSLR, and even in TV studios.

The Wide DR Gamma and Highlight Priority modes help ensure a natural range of tones and colors for realistic and eye-catching results. Recorded video remains stable thanks to a reliable 5-axis image stabilization system. Two XLR terminals mean sophisticated and convenient audio recording on two separate channels. Ideal for a wide variety of applications, the XA11 delivers outstanding video quality in a powerful, versatile and portable package.

It will set you back $1,199, but you’re getting a much better camera for your money. (Click Here to Shop)

8. Logitech C922x Pro Stream Webcam

If you’re looking at getting started on a budget, Logitech may be the brand for you. For many videos a simple webcam can be the perfect fit. And even though many computers have built in webcams, having an external one allows you to position it just right so you can get the best viewing angle. These also record higher quality video than built in webcams, and record more of the room you’re in.

The Logitech C922x will record full HD 1080P video at 30Fps/ 720P at 60FPS. Works with Windows 7, Windows 8 or Windows 10, macOS X 10.9 or higher, XBox One, Chrome OS, Android v5.0 or above, all via a plug-and-play USB port. It even records clear videos in dim or poorly backlit settings and has a five foot cable.

You can get the Logitech C922x for $99.99, making it a great value buy for a 1080p HD camera. (Click Here to Shop)

9. Nexigo 1080P Web Camera

Last, but not least, is the Nexigo 1080P Web Camera. This camera comes with plug-and-play technology for Windows and Mac, and shots 1080p up to 1920 x 1080 at 30fps. Never heard of the brand? They don’t spend as much on marketing and advertising as others on this list, and that’s why this is able to come in under $50 for a true 1080p HD camera.

You can get the Nexigo Web Cam today for $44.99. (Click Here to Shop)

There you have it, 9 cameras that will get you setup with your home recording or streaming project today. From something you might have in your pocket already, to a $50 webcam, up to a $1,199 professional camera, all of these options provide different pros and cons. Pick the right option for you and get started today!