Best 4K Cameras Reviewed & Rated for Quality

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The world of photography is filled with unimaginable beauty, style, and elegance, but only if you know how to shoot quality images and video. Part of having the best shot is investing in the best 4K camera for the job. In fact, if you are thinking of recording video or shooting images for anything other than personal use, then it is probably best to invest in camera equipment that can handle all of the professional work expected of a professional photographer. From high resolution to superior features that make you enjoy what you are doing, these pieces of equipment can help you achieve so much more while inputting much less. 4, 000 refers to how many horizontal pixels are in the equipment, which delivers a high-quality viewing experience. This feature is particularly important now more than ever because consumer 4K TV sets have become increasingly popular these days to help deliver the ultimate viewing experience that every consumer is looking for. Alongside the resolution is the recording rate, ideally measured in (fps) frames per second, and the higher the fps the greater the video quality. Many manufacturers have come up with new technologies to help provide a better viewing experience, and this often overwhelms the consumer. Below are best 4K cameras reviewed for quality.

GoPro HERO5
  • GoPro HERO5
  • 4.8 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Performance and convenience
  • Price: See Here
YI
  • YI
  • 4.7 out of 5
    Our rating
  • High impact resistance
  • Price: See Here
PANASONIC LUMIX
  • PANASONIC LUMIX
  • 4.7 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Ample lens options
  • Price: See Here

Every year welcomes a stream of new technologically advanced cameras to help deliver a superior video recording experience. Today, virtually every serious manufacturer of such equipment has adopted new technologies that enable consumers to use their piece of equipment to shoot stunningly beautiful videos and images. These technologies have been spread over models of all costs. Therefore, whether you have a few hundred dollars to spare or willing to go all the way and part with thousands of dollars’ worth of equipment, there is good news for you because there is something for everyone. The type of equipment chosen depends on what you intend to do with it and your budget constraints. If you can afford good quality equipment then you should probably go for it because you will most likely get your money’s worth. Every person expects a good return on his or her investment.

 

10 Best 4K Cameras

 

1. GoPro HERO5

Performance and convenience are perfectly balanced in this model, with voice control and 4K video that will leave you smiling with satisfaction. The waterproof design makes it stress-free to take images near water bodies or when it is raining. In addition, the easy-to-use touch display will make it enjoyable to operate the equipment even if you are new to the world of 4K cameras.
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Video Stabilization

For stunningly smooth video, you should try the powerful features of HERO 5. Whether the device is handheld and images shot from a moving vehicle or mounted to your gear to capture stationary objects, you will get stable images.

Voice Control

For hands-free fanatics, the device offers powerful yet simple voice commands to control the device. You will surely enjoy using this hands-free control feature when you do not want to touch every button all the time.

Cost and Value

This device is great for those who love using hands-free features such as voice commands to operate smart devices. The video stabilization feature is also very impressive. In addition, the price is pocket-friendly.
Pros

Simple yet powerful voice commands to operate the equipment

Produces stunningly smooth video even when handheld

4K video and 12MP photo

Waterproof up to a 33ft depth

Cons

Video quality in low light may not be as good

The waterproof feature might malfunction in deeper water depths

2. YI

For an immersive footage, you should probably try this best action camera with 4K30 video recording. With a battery life of up to two hours and an integrated touchscreen, this item gives you control over your equipment for extended periods of time. The tough Gorilla Glass is impact resistant, which makes the LCD touchscreen last longer while serving you better. The 4.4V 1200mAh lithium-ion battery allows recordings of up to 120 minutes.
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120 Minutes 4K Video Recording

With a single charge, the battery could last you 120 minutes of the 4K recording of 30/fps videos. The 4.4V 1200mAh lithium-ion battery gives you an 8-hour standby time.

Gorilla Glass Retina Touchscreen

The retina display LCD touchscreen produces high-quality display. The Gorilla Glass will resist dust, scratches and even impact of daily use. With a 160 degrees view angle, you won’t miss a shot.

Cost and Value

Users can record high-resolution videos and capture 12M photos in various video and photo modes. Others features like timer and slow motion give the user maximum control. In addition, it is a great budget phone.
Pros

Superior image quality

Advanced video stabilization for superior smooth footage

Impressive battery life

High-responsive LCD touchscreen

Cons

Sound quality may not be as great

Battery life deteriorates over time

3. PANASONIC LUMIX

This product from Panasonic is truly revolutionary, with more than 24 compact lens options. The interchangeable lens option makes it a good choice for those who want to shoot from various angles and distances. The mirrorless design enables a more compact body with state-of-the-art audio, video, exposure, wireless and intelligent-focusing technologies, which are impossible to achieve with traditional DSLRs. One shot with this model will truly capture the scene.
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DMC-G7 High-Quality Image

If you are looking to take high-quality images, then this is definitely a good choice. The 16MP sensor is highly dependable and can deliver great images, thanks to the intelligent image processor.

DMG-G7 Precise Auto Focus

The equipment features intelligent autofocusing to track details such as size, color, and motion of the object. You will have confidence in the shots you take and there will be no more blurry results.

Cost and Value


Once you use this Panasonic model you will never go back to traditional DSLRs, as the image is crystal clear and the video is 4K UHD, with an intense viewing experience. The cost is modest and great for those who want to strike a balance between quality and affordability.
Pros

4K UHD video pause feature

Fast, precise autofocusing

Superior DSLM image quality

Less bulky/ weighs less than traditional DSLRs

Cons

Lacks image stabilization for video

Zooming may reduce image sharpness

4. Nikon D500

4. Nikon D500
This model will follow you when you pursue your photography dreams and help you capture images with stunning clarity. For utmost speed and clarity, you should try this model from Nikon. Capture thrilling wildlife scenes in a manner that demonstrates your photography skills and record busy, low-light cityscapes with fast action shots. This model will be your ideal companion when you are in your wonderland and want to bring cinematic 4K UHD video experience with you.
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Flagship Power, DX Agility

This Nikon model boasts processing power and advanced technologies. Capture your life interests with passion and clarity but having one of these high-speed image capturers with exceptional resolution. You’ll capture gorgeous images that everyone will admire.

Small, Yet Powerful

The sleek design allows you to carry your favorite equipment wherever you go. It packs immense power in a seemingly small body. It is good for those who like traveling light but not without their camera.

Cost and Value


The small body delivers so many powerful features that it would be impossible for anyone who lovers capturing nature to travel without it. If you love quality and portability, then this is ideal.
Pros

Highly portable and can be carried everywhere

High performance and stunning resolution

Delivers unparalleled clarity and versatility

Produces high-quality images even in the dark

Cons

Some users might experience problems with autofocus

Some ISO range settings may result in considerable noise

5. Fujifilm X-T2

5. Fujifilm X-T2
This robust, lightweight design flaunts a compact body with powerful features to deliver all that is required of a powerful cutting-edge technology camera. It also features easy-to-use dials and a large HD EVF. It is also compatible with various high-performance interchangeable lenses. It also features outstanding image quality with unmatched 4K video recording, thanks to the latest technology sensor that leans on a powerful processing engine to demonstrate perfection.
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24.3MP X-Trans CMOS III Sensor

This model features a powerful sensor for the most outstanding image quality. It does not need to use an optical low-pass filter to reduce false colors. When used in conjunction with an XF lens, it produces images with a resolution perceived to be greater than the actual pixels.

Focus on Objects with Erratic Movements

The improved continuous shooting performance is guaranteed to impress any photography enthusiast, delivering up to 11fps when the mechanical shutter is used. It is now easier to track fast-moving objects over a period of time to attain continuous shooting.

Cost and Value

During video recording, users can access film simulation modes, allowing movie shooters some extra room for creativity whilst shortening the post-production work. Users can also track fast-moving objects over an extended period without much struggle. In addition, the cost is modest.
Pros

Enables tracking of fast-moving objects during shooting

Film simulation modes allow extra creativity without extensive post-production

Delivers superior movies and images with no moiré

Three-directional tilting LCD monitor

Cons

No touchscreen

No wireless connectivity

6. Canon EOS

6. Canon EOS
This model builds on the influential legacy and track-record of the 5D series. The imaging excellence is unmatched and can produce high-quality images for weddings. In fact, portrait photographers will enjoy recording every transformational moment in life, including graduation. Landscape and nature shooters will like the crisp images created whereas videographers will have a reason every day to love their job.
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3.2-inch Clear-View LCD II

The low-reflection monitor delivers a sharp and bright display to match a range of shooting situations. You will experience fast, intuitive operation, thanks to the touch panel surface of the LCD screen.

DIGIC 6+ Image Processor

This processor facilitates fast operation and guarantees high-quality still image. Regardless of the shooting environment, 4K video recording will always be achieved. In addition, the noise-processing algorithm helps in noise-canceling.

Cost and Value

This product will deliver superior image processing and high performance at high resolution. It is also guaranteed to perform no matter the lighting conditions. While the cost can be a bit higher than the average cameras, the performance is unmatched.
Pros

30.4MP full-frame CMOS sensor performs versatile shooting

High continuous shooting speed

Delivers expanded vertical coverage

Touch-screen LCD monitor

Cons

The cost can be a little higher than the average DSLR

Some people may experience focusing issues

7. Sony Alpha

7. Sony Alpha
It features the world’s fastest AF speed and highest phase detection AF points to deliver unmatched quality. Every lens also gets to enjoy optical image stabilization, with intuitive touchscreen AF operation. There are also professional video features and 4K movie recording. With a professional rugged body, this equipment is designed for steady handling. The compact body will also withstand the daily rigors of recording videos and shooting images in the field.
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Professional Rugged Body

This product offers solid reliability, thanks to its professional rugged body that delivers steady handling. Shooting images in the field can often be challenging, but the compact body is designed to reliably handle all that.

Compatible with Mountable Lenses

Enjoy unmatched handheld shooting freedom with image stabilization and hybrid AF. You can also enjoy changing various mountable lenses depending on your personal style and what you intend to shoot.

Cost and Value

This model seals around the main ports and buttons to guarantee moisture and water resistant design. The body is also rugged enough to offer the steady handling needed to ensure your equipment is secure. In addition, this item is quite affordable.
Pros

Professional video features and 4K movie recording

Image stabilization

Fastest autofocus

LCD touchscreen for smooth focus point shifts

Cons

A little complex menu system

No headset socket

8. Sony FDRX3000

8. Sony FDRX3000
This action cam is the real deal when it comes to capturing mesmerizing, high-quality images and 4K video. You can capture every move you make with high-resolution and take your action movies to the next level. The Balanced Optical SteadyShot allows the capturing of stable images and crystal-clear video. In addition, the rugged design allows you to hold it in your hands without fear of dropping.
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Ultimate Image Stabilization

The Sony model delivers advanced camera-shake compensation, thanks to the image stabilization feature. The Balanced Optical SteadyShot has perfected the art of minimizing the effects of camera shake to deliver stable images.

Remote Camera Control

The optical Live-View remote allows the streaming of a live preview. You can control numerous capabilities, including power on/off, start/stop recording, and shooting settings.

Cost and Value

With this model, you won’t have to worry about shake ruining your shot, as the image stabilization feature will reduce the effects of the shakes. Remote control and viewing also give the user so much control over how to use the device. In addition, the price is modest.
Pros

Advanced camera-shake compensation and image stabilization

Ensures consistently strong video quality across settings

Allows live preview streaming

Tough body to withstand harsh conditions

Cons

Limited battery life

Monochrome information LCD

9. Samsung NX500

9. Samsung NX500
Casual and novice photographers or photo enthusiasts could find this brand very useful, particularly because of the exceptional video and image quality. This mirrorless type is fast shooting and compiles versatile connectivity properties into a single compact package, including a 28MP sensor with an ultra-high performance autofocus system. Users will be able to capture fast-moving objects with utmost speed and precision. 4K UHD video lovers will also like the camera because it supports the same.
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Powerful Sensor

This product relies on its powerful 28MP sensor to capture vivid and detailed images. It will deliver lifelike colors with UHD resolution. The result is rich, colorful images of exceptional quality and with minimal noise.

High-Resolution, 4K Videos

If you are looking to shoot the best quality ultra-high resolution, authentic 4K videos, then this is it. Users can enjoy watching the UHD videos they have recorded using this top-quality camera equipment.

Cost and Value

This equipment will shoot high-quality images and video regardless of the lighting conditions. You will also get a clear shot of fast-moving images. The price can be a bit high, but you can be sure it is worth every single coin.
Pros

Captures UHD/4K video

Allows the recording of video and images to SD card

Includes the latest Wi-Fi standard

Powerful 28MP sensor for crisp-clear images

Cons

Can be a bit more costly than the average camera

High-resolution images can drain the battery

10. Leica

10. Leica
This model features all that a photography enthusiast needs to capture every special moment with no hesitation. Whether you want to record a sporting event or a day out in the wild, this compact body design and equipment choice will deliver professional photography. There is no doubt that this recording equipment is compact, as users can also enjoy 4K video recording and integrated Wi-Fi features.
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Incredibly Fast Lens

This model features fast lenses, with a large sensor. It will make the best of the available light to deliver images with rich natural colors. The sensitivity range is also high, thanks to the large pixels.

Wi-Fi and NFC

With integrated Wi-Fi and NFC features, there is no need for complex wires, as you can control the model remotely from your smartphone or tablet. This is especially important when the photographer would like to be included in the picture.

Cost and Value

The relevant app is available as open source software and can be downloaded and installed on both Android and iOS devices. With Wi-Fi and NFC features, the user has more control over the device. In addition, the cost is quite modest.
Pros

Camera features can be controlled remotely, thanks to Wi-Fi and NFC features

Allows the capturing of moving memories in high resolutions

Simple design and intuitive handling

Delivers quality images even in low light

Cons

Image quality may not mirror the device’s MP

No touchscreen

Criteria Used in Choosing the Best 4K Cameras

While all these devices might boast of having 4K video recording capability, they are very different in performance and image quality. Just as with any other items from different manufacturers, the features and specifications of these products often differ in several aspects. This makes it even more important to spare some time and do your due diligence to understand the type of product you intend to invest your money in. Even some things as simple as sensors and focus are very different across different brands. Some of these factors can significantly affect the resultant angle of viewing and the overall output. Others, such as Wi-Fi, headphone sockets, touchscreen display, waterproofing, and focus peaking, are all important factors to consider when shopping for your ideal travel partner and adventure companion. However, all these features can be very overwhelming especially if the consumer has a wide range of products to choose from. To save you from all the hassle, below are the criteria for evaluating the best cameras.

Ease of Use

Well, indeed technological advancements have led to the creation or manufacture of high-tech gadgets and equipment that demonstrate superior performance and functionality over their predecessors. However, behind all the sophistication is the fear of having technology devices that are too complicated for the average user to operate and use. When investing in a piece of technology equipment, it is important to consider whether you can operate it. No matter how sophisticated or expensive your piece of equipment is, it is not going to be of much use to you if you are unable to operate it and enjoy some of the superior features it has to offer. Your gadget should be very easy to operate and use to allow you to achieve the objective for which you purchased it. However, gadgets are different in terms of ease of use. While some can be operated by someone who has never touched a sophisticated camera before, others require the user to spend some time with it before getting familiar with how it is operated and used. The user should be able to choose a gadget that he or she is comfortable operating to deliver the desired result.

Regardless of the time you’ve spent in the film industry, you are likely to be surprised by the complex nature of some features and functions built into some of these devices. It can get very frustrating for a professional photographer considering the learning curve he or she has to go through despite having been in the photography and film industry for longer than everyone else. Navigating through some menus can prove to be more complex than ever imagined. Regardless of your level of professionalism or experience in the industry, it is important to consider a piece of equipment that would not require advanced skills to navigate the menu and make use of some functions and features. In fact, you do not have to possess any prior knowledge of operating 4K camera equipment in order to handle your ideal device. The controls, menus, and navigations should be so easy to use that even newbies would be able to operate them with ease. For instance, crucial device settings should not be deeply buried beneath layers and layers of other complex functions and features so as to look like you are going through a maze of menus before you could find what you are looking for. Typically, the user should be in a position to figure out how the gadget operates moments after unboxing. Otherwise, the camcorder may not be of much use to you.

Compatibility

Investing in a professional video recording device can be expensive. Since most of these gadgets do not come cheap, it is important to make the best use of your equipment to make you feel like you are getting real value for your money. The item should offer more than just superior resolution and high-quality video recording; it should be compatible with other related devices and tools. Different manufacturers have different add-on features built into their devices to differentiate them from the competition. For instance, despite having a built-in mic, the user might need some external equipment to enjoy better audio. If you might want to use an XLR microphone, then it is important to consider a device with such an option. But if your equipment is not compatible then you should be ready to deal with the inconvenience it could potentially cause you. Fortunately, you can work your way around this and look for a suitable substitute to make work easier and enhance your video shooting experience.

When it comes to video recording and image capturing, the user must also consider aspects such as tools for playing, converting and editing 4K videos. Keep in mind that the files are almost always large in size and would need superior hardware to process. For instance, a computer with core i7 CPU and superior SSD could help process such large and complex files, but the 4K video converter of your choice should easily import AVCHD before converting them to various useable formats like 720p and 1080p to play on different devices, including smartphones and tablets. Therefore, compatibility is a very important factor to consider when shopping for your ideal video recording or image capturing equipment. You don’t want to invest thousands of dollars in a piece of equipment only for it to become stressful when you want to use it across other platforms.

4K Video Quality

Perhaps this should be on top of your list when shopping for image capturing or video recording equipment. Professional 4K camcorders are generally bigger than typical consumer camera equivalents due to the enhanced features. They have a larger version of almost everything: sensors, lenses and more. For instance, bigger lenses allow the equipment to perform better even in low-light conditions. They are great at light gathering and will maintain the quality of the image despite the lighting being poor. This feature is particularly important where the user intends to use it for recording and producing documentaries. Lovers of full movies can also take advantage of this feature to deliver high-quality recordings.

A professional camera is superior on many fronts. However, what sets it apart is the unparalleled image quality. In this regard, a pro knows the kind of adjustments needed to help attain the desired results. You should also note that this could compromise other aspects or features of the device. For instance, a high-quality video in rich color and astounding detail could be attained at the expense of storage space, which it consumes. Users who want to achieve the highest quality of video and image must be ready and willing to deal with the large storage space that such files consume. This is a sad reality that most high-quality equipment owners must deal with, which can be a deal breaker for those looking to have smaller video files that do not take up much space on their hard drive or SSD.

User’s Skill Level

People have different skills levels when it comes to handling or using video equipment. While some are just being introduced into the world of photography or film industry, others have been in the game for long and have handled a wide range of video recording equipment. They are also well-conversant with the strengths and weaknesses of different devices. You may be regarded as a pro in the field of photography, but you should understand that others have been in the game longer than you and have handled far too many pieces of camera equipment than you have. While there is no harm in purchasing more advanced photography gadgets, paying attention to your skill levels is equally important.

Professional video recording equipment is built with specific skill levels in mind. Whether you are a beginner, intermediate or professional photographer, there is a right choice for you. Buying the right type of gadget can determine whether you are making a good or bad investment decision. There are specific types of equipment meant for the beginner and intermediate skill levels. Similarly, if you are an advanced photographer, you should probably consider recording gadgets that match your skill level. Advanced features are meant for various skilled professionals who want to make the most out of their recording equipment. 50fps-60fps are great for professionals looking to get the best shots. Overall, it is about understanding how your gadget would serve your needs better based on your skill level.

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is a 4K Camera?

A: This simply means those that can shoot videos of 4, 000 pixels width. This is far more detailed than what the market has seen over the years. The image is detailed, crisp and high-definition. It will retain the clarity even when viewed on extra-large TVs. It is also significantly more detailed than HD footage of 1920 pixels across because it has twice as many pixels. It has four times as many pixels. It is also described as Ultra-High Definition, which you are more likely to encounter.

Q: How much does a professional video recording equipment cost?

A: With technological advancements, manufacturers have been able to produce some of the best quality pieces of equipment to help enhance the shooting experience. In fact, technology has made it easier to acquire superior high-tech gadgets affordably. Note that different manufacturers price their gadgets differently according to model and performance features. These gadgets are generally affordable nowadays. However, if you are looking for the best quality equipment that can produce highest-quality video and shoot moving images without compromising image quality or clarity, you might have to dig a little deeper into your pocket. Most entry and intermediate level type are generally affordable, but pros have to invest a few thousand dollars more to get the best quality videos for professional documentaries and the film industry.

Q: What is the best 4K camera?

A: There are many high-quality video recording equipment selling on the market today. While most manufacturers have learned to leverage the power of superior technologies to manufacture top-quality gadgets, these gadgets still differ in performance and features. The best one should record high-quality video and capture stunning color-rich images. It should also be compatible with other related tools, be easy to use, and represent your skill level or reflect your needs. It should also be within your budget so you don’t have to break the bank to acquire it.

Q: Where can I get the best camera equipment?

A: Finding the ideal equipment that could meet your shooting needs is not an easy task. Sometimes it takes days, weeks, or even months of searching to find the right gadget. You should be able to get good equipment from your nearest departmental or chain store. However, if you neither have the time nor the patience required to shop around or physically look for the right item you need, you could consider online stores to see if you can quickly find what might satisfy your needs. There are several stores that stock some of the most professional high-tech camera equipment that can shoot the best quality images and record UHD videos. All you have to do is go through the product description pages of the items you have identified and select the one that better suits your needs. Place your order online and it could be yours in a couple of days regardless of where you are.

Sources

  1. Bill Schiffner, When is it time to start recording in 4K? Pros say right now., Article, Oct 05, 2014
  2. Dale Baskin, Richard Butler, Carey Rose, Rishi Sanyal, 4K: What you need to know, Article, Jan 01, 2015
  3. Kavon Zamanian, The Hidden Benefits of 4K, Article, Nov 09, 2015
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