The best digital camera under $300 is going to find us in the lower-end of the pricing spectrum yet still bring us some great quality pictures and videos to the table. As we’ve surveyed many digital cameras (especially in our definitive camera guide) in the past and continue to do so for a lot of different types and applications, today we’re met with a specific price-point we hope can help you constrain your search as you sift through the many different models out there. In our picks, we made sure we found different styles, shapes, capabilities and overall functionality to try to appease most readers out there — all for $300 bucks or less. Let’s check them out.
The best digital camera for under $300 budgets
Nikon Coolpix L340
The Nikon Coolpix L340 is known for how easy it is to use and its numerous technical features despite a pretty low price as compared to other popular models out there. This camera is simple yet high-end, making it one of the best digital cameras under 300 dollars in our opinion to start off the list. This digital camera is easy to handle with a specialized grip and it has sixteen different scene mode settings, which lets you match the camera to particular environments and locations you might find yourself in.
The camera’s lens allows you to zoom quite well (28x optical zoom/56x Dynamic Fine Zoom), especially in close-ups thanks to its Zoom-NIKKOR ED glass lens and vibration reduction technology. In terms of numbers, you have 20.2 megapixels with a CCD image sensor, as well as 720p HD video resolution if you felt like filming some videos while you were at it. It isn’t the most hefty digital camera under $300 regarding numbers, but considering how affordable and highly rated this is, it comes in first for our guide today.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ70
Next up, we include the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ70, known for its intense capture speed and high-resolution abilities. This camera has exceptional zooming capabilities, is easy to use, and creates vivid photos, making it another one of the best digital cameras under $300 in the market today. On top of the 60X optial zoom and Dolby digital sound (yes, a built-in Zoom microphone), has some video recording capabilities as well at 1080p HD\60p resolution. The lens on the camera provides a solid focal length range, allowing it to be used in many different types of settings if you’re going to be switching it up a lot.
This one also has an Active Mode, which makes it great for filming movies by minimizing camera shake which is a great plus. It has an HDMI port so that you can connect it to a TV to easily and effectively view the photos. The numerous features and capabilities of the DMC-FZ70 camera make it the ideal purchase for the educated photographer looking to step up their photo game as a great digital camera for under $300 bucks. The price tends to fluctuate a lot so make sure you check multiple sites to see whose lowest at the moment.
Canon SX530 HS
This camera is the ultimate choice for the beginning to intermediate photographer looking for a durable and effective camera for an affordable price. The Canon SX530 HS has focal abilities as well as sophisticated features make this camera one of the best digital cameras for $300 or less. Firstly, This camera has 50x zoom power (it is called a long-zoom camera for a reason!). 16 megapixels, 3″ color LCD screen (no optical viewfinder here), and a nice built-in flash. The high-speed auto focus is also rated well this one, combined with its 1080p videos you’re going to have a solid video clip regardless of movement.
Another additive feature of this camera is that photos can be directly shared to compatible smart phone apps, and your smart phone or tablet can remotely control the camera. Even though this camera has elaborate features, the SX530 HS is easy to use and understand. This is the perfect camera for the photographer looking to learn more about photography with a reliable and effective camera that is easy to understand, all for under 300 dollars.
The Sony W800 point-and-shoot camera is portable, sleek, and easy to use. It’s great for photographers who want better quality pictures and some versatility if they plan on traveling or being on-the-go quite often, but are not looking for the complexity of a professional camera. This camera can be used for both pictures and videos (720p HD) with easy playback features. It has 5x optical zoom, a wide-angle lens, advanced flash, and decent-quality CCD image sensor.
Additionally, and although not a must, this one has something called ‘picture effect’ technology to give you a lot of ‘modes’ to choose from, not to mention the nifty sweep panorama to grasp that entire scene and memory in front of you. If you’re looking for a camera that takes better pictures than your smart phone but is simple to use and compact enough to easily carry around, then the Sony W800 is the best digital camera under $300 for you.
Nikon Coolpix L32
As another top pick out of Nikon’s Coolpix series, the Nikon Coolpix L32 is another highly rated under $300 compact digital camera with more advanced features than most. This camera actually runs on AA batteries, which is both a pro and con for some — take a few extra batteries with you and you won’t have to worry about it dying on you, while on the other hand this may be inconvenient for some since it won’t last quite as long as others that charge and don’t want to lug around batteries in their pocket or bag.
Despite the extremely cheap price and different spin to powering it up, you’re getting some decent specs on this one: 20.1 megapixels, image stabilization, video filming (720p HD), 3.0 LCD, 5x optical zoom and 10x dynamic fine zoom, and a NIKKOR glass lens with vibration reduction (like the other coolpix model mentioned previously). On top of it all, this digital camera also includes features that automatically focuses on faces, instantly takes photos when someone smiles, and softens and brightens skin as extra effects. The L32 is a great camera under three hundred bucks for the user looking for a pick that is more sophisticated than most, and the battery thing may be up your alley on top of it all.
The Olympus TG-870 is unique and versatile, and was built for adventure. The rugged features and durability make this one of the best digital cameras for $300 or less if it fits your lifestyle. This camera is waterproof up to 50 feet, has built-in Wi-Fi, and GPS. It is crushproof up to 220 pounds, shockproof, and freezer proof. The camera also has different picture modes and scene modes so that it can take accustomed photos in different types of environments.
Whether you are on the beach looking at the perfect sunset or in the mountains looking at wildlife, this camera will produce excellent shots. It is compact enough to fit in your pocket and durable enough to withstand the elements. If you are an adventure-seeking traveler looking for an effective camera to bring along with you than the Olympus TG-870 is the ideal choice for you. It’s just a bit up there in our targeted price-range, but may very well be worth the investment.
Fujifilm FinePix XP90
This camera is durable, stylish, and compact. The Fujifilm FinePix XP90 is versatile and tough making it one of the best digital cameras under $300. It is waterproof, freeze-proof, shockproof, and dustproof, making it an ideal outdoor camera, rivaling the previous TG-870. This camera can record full videos as well, switching from camera to video with an easy push of a button. It has a decent 5x zoom lens and a 10x intelligent digital zoom. can automatically adjust to different lighting environments, allowing for clear looking pictures even in the darkest of settings. Despite the versatile features this camera remains compact and lightweight.
The FinePix XP90 can connect to you smart phone and tablet in order to edit and fine-tune photos or movies. The “burst mode button” allows for continuous shooting up to 10 frames a second so that every moment is captured. This camera was built for bold and fast paced adventures and is sure to perform well in any and all circumstances. Since it’s pretty similar to our Olympus pick, we’d say grab this one if you wanted to save some money since it’s nearly half the price.
Nikon COOLPIX S33
Another coolpix recommendation? Of course! The affordability, realistic photos, and numerous difference features and effects this camera provides make it one of the best digital cameras for $300 or less. The Nikon Coolpix S33 is waterproof, freezeproof, and shockproof and has Wi-Fi built into it. It has a rechargeable battery that is lasting and durable. It is compact and lightweight, making it easy to transfer and carry around wherever you go while fitting in most pockets. The S33 additionally has burst mode, numerous different scene modes, various shooting modes, as well as white balance modes.
All of these features allow for vivid, clear photos in most environments you may find yourself. Lastly, the auto focus immediately recognizes and focuses in on faces and it has auto flash and red-eye mode ensuring clear photos. The S33 is a great purchase for someone who wants high quality photos but does not want to spend the money required for a professional camera.
Kodak PIXPRO AZ42116
This digital camera can be used to take crisp close-ups, exciting movies, or beautiful panoramas. The versatility it possesses as well as the host of exciting features make the Kodak PIXPRO AZ42116 one of the best digital cameras under 300 dollars. It’s a bit rare in the market these days, but still available on some sites if you look closely. For one, it has 42x zooming capabilities as well as a 24mm wide-angle lens. This allows for the user to take clear pictures even if they are not close to the object. Photos can be viewed immediately after they are taken on a bright LCD screen. This camera also has multiple different setting options, all of which are user-friendly to navigate and use.
It can automatically detect faces, smiles, blinks, cats, and dogs (interesting, right?). It has photo-enhancing features such as red-eye removal, skin softening and eye brightening. The PIXPRO AZ42116 is affordable yet effective, making it a smart purchase for anyone looking for a powerful and performance driven digital camera if you’re into little side features that aren’t usually included in the popular camera models. It just isn’t as compact as a lot of others in the market.
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-TX30
To finish off our list, we include a sleek, lightweight digital camera with some pretty unique and fun features. Most importantly, the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-TX30 is waterproof, shockproof, freeze-proof, and dust-proof. It has a 5x optical zoom lens as well as video capabilities (full 1080p HD at 30 fps). The cameras navigation is touch screen and has 5 different brightness levels so that you can easily see the photos no matter where you are. Special effects and different filters can also be applied to photos after you have taken them.
The camera is extremely slim and lightweight, making it easy to take it with you wherever you go (fits in most pockets and definitely bags). Lastly, the magnifying glass feature allows for extremely close up photos if you need it, and the burst shooting effect allows for up to 10 frames to be taken at a time. This camera is affordable and effective with features that make taking photos fun and enjoyable, especially if you want a digital camera under $300 with extra protection so it won’t break easily on you.