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Our best digital camera for video selection is limited to cameras with the 1080p (HDTV) recording format - though look for the ones which can show HD recording directly on a HDTV using an HDMI input.

With everyday advancements in imaging technology it is now possible to do reasonable video recording with a digital still camera, that is, if your primary need is to capture high quality images with the occasional video shoot. The best digital cameras for video come with HD recording capability and can be directly viewed on a HDTV using a HDMI input. Though video resolution of a digital camera is usually lower than the image quality for still pictures, they still provide an attractive option to capture both pictures and video with a single device.

The best digital cameras for video these days support full HD recording at 1080p. Video quality gets better with more frames per second. It would also mean higher computational power and hence lower battery backup. The premium compact cameras can easily support 30fps recording which is very good for many occasions, except for sports.

Another important feature to consider is its capability to capture sound. Most video capable cameras come with a built in micro-phone but it is good to have support for external microphones. For better audio quality look for cameras that support stereo sound input and have wind filters.

Other features to look for in a video capable digital camera are,
* The maximum duration of recording, usually limited by memory card
* Video compression/encoding format supported, for eg H.264, MPEG4 or DivX recording allows longer clips to be stored on your card. should be compatible with your computers, LCD TV etc ..
* Zoom facility in video mode.
* Swivel LCD screen to capture video from difficult angles.
The best digital cameras for video have the above mentioned features and take excellent pictures as well, so they bring bang for the buck.

Browse All Top Digital Cameras For Video »

Olympus OM-D E-M1

Olympus OM-D E-M1 Compact System Camera


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Olympus OM-D E-M1
Pentax K-3
Sony Alpha A7
Nikon D610
Nikon D5300
Olympus OM-D E-M1 Compact System Camera
Pentax K-3 SLR Camera - Body Only
Sony Alpha A7  24.3 MP Interchangeable Digital Lens Camera - Body Only
Nikon D610 24.3 MP CMOS FX-Format Digital SLR Camera (Body Only)
Nikon D5300 24.2 MP CMOS Digital SLR Camera
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Release Date
Sep 2013
Oct 2013
Oct 2013
Oct 2013
Oct 2013
HD Recording Format
720p (HDTV), 1080p (HDTV), 1920 x 1080 (30 fps), 1280 x 720 (30 fps), 640 x 480 (30 fps)
720p (HDTV), 1080p (HDTV), 1920 x 1080 (60i, 50i, 30p, 25p, 24p), 1280 x 720 (60p, 50p
1080p (HDTV), 480p
720p (HDTV), 1080p (HDTV), 1920 x 1080 (30, 25, 24 fps), 1280 x 720 (60, 50, 30, 25 fps)
720p (HDTV), 1080p (HDTV), 1920 x 1080 (60, 50, 30, 25, 24 fps), 1280 x 720 (60, 50 fps), 640 x 424 (30, 25 fps)
Camera Type
Compact System Camera, SLR-style mirrorless
SLR/Professional, Mid-size SLR
Digital camera - Mirrorless system
SLR/Professional, Mid-size SLR
SLR/Professional, Compact SLR
Resolution
16.0 Megapixel
24.0 Megapixel
24.0 Megapixel
24.0 Megapixel
24.0 Megapixel
Image Sensor Type
CMOS
CMOS
CMOS
CMOS
CMOS
LCD Screen Size
3.0 in.
3.2 in.
3.0 in.
3.2 in.
3.2 in.
Image Sensor Size
21.64 mm
28.2 mm
43.2 mm
43.18 mm
28.2 mm

  • With gorgeous images - even in low light, incredible speed, and a wealth of high-end features, the Olympus OM-D E-M1 is the best Micro Four Thirds camera that money can buy. It's an easy Editors' Choice award winner.


  • Overall, our main criticism of the Olympus OM-D E-M1 lies not with its performance or feature-set, but with its price. £1299 / $1399 body-only is a lot to pay for a compact system camera these days.

  • Rating Unavailable

    The Olympus OM-D E-M1 surpasses everything that we have seen so far from an ILC. Providing amazing performance and image quality that rivals a lower level pro mode dSLR, this much smaller camera is ready to go anywhere and perform in all situations.


  • The Pentax K-3 is the most refined K-mount SLR to date, offering fast autofocus and superb image quality. Its video autofocus implementation isn't the best, but it still manages to snag our Editors' Choice award.


  • The Pentax K-3 is the most full-featured prosumer DSLR camera on the market, but not only that, it also delivers great performance, weather-resistant build quality, slick handling and excellent image quality too. The K-3 certainly has what it takes to compete with its main rivals, the Canon EOS 70D and Nikon D7100.
    The Pentax K-3 builds on the proven handling of the K-5 II camera.


  • A completely weatherproof body, good image quality and intuitive handling puts the K-3 cat among the pigeons, but there's still work to do if Pentax is to seriously compete with the DSLR options from Canon and Nikon.


  • After shooting with both the A7 and the A7R side-by-side, we'd be hard-pushed to choose between them, as both are remarkable cameras in their own right. On paper at least the A7 should offer faster auto-focusing and less noise at high ISOs than the A7R, but in reality there's not a big enough difference between the two cameras in either regard.


  • The Alpha A7 and A7r are a wake-up call for the photographic industry, especially to Canon and Nikon. Here are two cameras which not only match or outperform top-selling DSLRs in many respects, but which also can use their lenses, in some cases with minimal compromise on handling. If Canon and especially Nikon aren't careful, they could find themselves becoming lens manufacturers with a niche body business in pro sports photography.


  • For the price and size, you can't really beat the A7. This is a camera for early adopters, but it's a fantastic step forward and we're already looking forward to the next generation.


  • Though competition's increasing for low-end full-frame cameras, the Nikon D610 holds its own; that said, while slightly faster than its predecessor it's not a whole lot different.


  • That the D610 is lighter than any other Nikon FX digital SLR camera is a real boon to anyone planning to use it for extended periods of time, though be prepared that it's still quite a handful and noticeably heavier than the cheapest auto focus SLRs of the film era (then again, it's a much higher specified model than any of those). The Nikon D610's mirror is surprisingly quiet for a full-frame SLR camera and in normal use it produces only minimal viewfinder blackout.


  • While the Nikon D610 is an excellent camera that's capable of recording plenty of detail in images with rich tones, good exposure and pleasant colours it is considerably more expensive the Canon 6D.


  • So while the Nikon D5300 doesn't add that many new features to the year-old D5200, what it does add makes it a unique product at the mid-range price-point, offering something genuinely different to the likes of the Canon EOS 650D, Pentax K-5 II and the Sony A65. The combination of a free-angle screen, great video mode, high-quality stills and new connectivity options mean that the Nikon D5300 is a worthy winner of our Highly Recommended award.


  • The Nikon D5300 is what's often referred to in the technology world as an 'evolutionary' upgrade. Nikon has abandoned the D5200's optical low pass filter, which might have been considered revolutonary a year ago, but now looks, to borrow a fashion industry term, 'on trend'. That's not to say it's frivolous or unwarranted, given that it improves the D5300's image quality with no apparent drawbacks (Moire wasn't an issue in any of my test shots) it's absolutely the right move.


  • Although the upgrades made to the D5200 by the D5300 are solid, they are unlikely to attract D5200 users to upgrade.
    They may make the camera more attractive to photographers without a brand commitment, but they aren't especially forward-looking or novel. The variangle screen and Effect modes encourage the user to shoot in live view mode (and compose the image on screen), but the live view AF system's performance lags behind that of many compact system cameras, and the screen isn't touch-sensitive.


Top 5 digital camera for video:

  1. Olympus OM-D E-M1 Compact System Camera
  2. Pentax K-3 SLR Camera - Body Only
  3. Sony Alpha A7 24.3 MP Interchangeable Digital Lens Camera - Body Only
  4. Nikon D610 24.3 MP CMOS FX-Format Digital SLR Camera (Body Only)
  5. Nikon D5300 24.2 MP CMOS Digital SLR Camera