These are the best 4k Video cameras out today.
A cross between an HD and a 4K camcorder, this camera is equipped with a ½.3” MOS sensor capable of shooting 4K videos and two built-in processing engines that makes 4K image scalable for Full HD delivery. The HCX1000 also has a built-in 20c Leica Dicomar lens with four lens groups and capable of supporting two optical stabilization modes for shooting in both HD and 4K. Additionally, there are two viewfinders for two options of either with a till up color EVF or a pull out LCD high resolution touch screen. The touch screen LCD has a screen size of 3.5” while the viewfinder is at .45” with a pixel count of 1,226,880.
Video shooting capabilities can either be in AVCHD Progressive, MOV or MP4 although mp4 codec should be used in recording 4K/UHD with all codecs able to support full HD recording. Other features include an IR recording mode and a built-in IR emitter for 4K shooting and HD even without any visible light. Users can shoot in complete darkness with the help of an illuminated ring that alerts the subject if video recording is ongoing. For simultaneous and recording in relay, there are two SD slots available user can use. The camera uses Power O.I.S for 4K recording for image stabilization. Built-in physical filters can be used interchangeably and great for outdoor photography. Apart from functions like Zebra that indicates over exposure, Histogram which displays the image as a brightness graph and the camera assist function that allows for calibration of monitors, the camera also sports a two 3-pin XLR audio inputs and built-in microphone. It can also be connected to a smart device because it has NFC capabilities. There is also an additional software for editing, the HD-Writer XE2.0.
This camera made it to our list because of its impeccable zoom range and performance in general. Its image stabilization system is also one feature worth noticing, not to mention its great picture quality.
Sony FDR-AX33 4K Camcorder
Designed with the light user in mind, this compact mini-camcorder is perfect for video enthusiasts looking for a budget-friendly 4K handy cam that does not compromise features and specs. With a retail price of $948.00, this Sony FDR-AX33 has a lighter body than its predecessor, the FDR-AX100 4K camcorder and a lot cheaper. It also comes with one of the most advanced image stabilization packages when it comes to cameras, referred to as the BOSS or Balanced Optical Steady Shot which yields solid 4k video quality even at a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels and at the highest possible zoom. The AX33 uses SDXC memory cards and is equipped with wide-angle lens and a built-in 50-lumens video projector. Moreover, its Exmor R CMOS sensor is capable of providing ultra-high sensitivity even in low light.
Designed with a plastic body, this camcorder measures 6” long and weighs 1 lb. 5 oz., including the battery. The user can easily hold the unit with one hand using its exterior handstrap and granular right side. Recording and zoom control can be done conveniently with the index finger and the camera automatically turns on and off when from the screen. . It also sports a swiveling LCD screen with a high resolution of 921,600 dots and uses white pixels for added brightness. Shooting videos under most conditions has never been easier with its 0.27” OLED viewfinder that can be tilted and also has a diopter. With the 4K/UD containing more horizontal lines than a Full HD camcorder, this handycam gives more detailed videos and complemented by the BOSS. It can also take 10 MPx stills in 4288 x 2408 pixels. Audio is in PCM format and can be recorded in stereo at 48 kHz/16 bits and has a five-capsule built-in mic that has Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound. Moreover, recorded videos are compatible with 5.1 home cinema systems. Audio is recorded in stereo (48 kHz / 16 bits) in PCM format. The built-in mic contains five capsules and can produce Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound. For each channel, a VU meter appears on the monitor. This mode, which can be activated in the menu, allows you to record videos compatible with 5.1 home cinema systems. The Sony NP-VF70 battery that comes with other accessories also allows user to shoot for one-and-a-half hours.
The Sony FDR-AX33 in on our list of top cameras because of its price, great handling and superb image stabilization system.
Also a twin-recording camcorder like its predecessor, the HC-W850, with a flip-out LCD equipped with a small wide-angle second camera and 20x optical zoom lens, the newest Panasonic offering has become better with additional features such as 4K/30p recording, capable of recording with a quadruple number of pixels per frame as 1080p video. Frame rates for 1080p can reach up to 60 fps. The f/1.8-3.6 Leica lens is the same with the lens of W850, 20x zoom but boasts of an illuminated CMOS image sensor at 8.29 megapixels. Another interesting upgrade and considered to be the most notable is the additional wireless twin camera function since it lets a second device, either a smart phone or another camcorder with WiFi capabilities work as a sub-camera. This enables shooting at two different locations.
Apart from its wireless capability feature and the remote PIP capabilities, this camera also has other modes: narration and baby monitor. The former allows the user to shoot using the main lens and narrate it down, in PIP mode, using a secondary camera while the latter can be used to watch remote video in real time from another device like a tablet or smart phone. As for the secondary camera, it sports a movable hinge to let the user capture at 360 degrees. It can also be tilted at 20 degrees and has zooming function is at 2x. Like most camcorders, it also has a built-in stereo microphone. Zoom rocker and a cold shoe slot. There is also a slot for a rechargeable battery and an SD card slot.
Being a twin-recording camcorder is reason enough for us to consider the HC-WX970 as one of the top 10 cameras in the market today but Panasonic took its level up a notch by making it possible to view the video in real time using a sub-camera and separate it from the main video stream.
JVC GY-HM200 4K Video Camera
This compact handheld camcorder is capable of 4K and Ultra HD recording modes supported by a ½.33” backside-illuminated sensor. HD has a resolution video of 3840 x 2160 at 24/30p as well as 8-bit Full HD 1080p video from 24p to 60p. Its 12x zoom lens has a focal range of 29.5 to 354mm and also sports a 24x dynamic zoom mode for HD video recording. Designed for professional use, this compact camcorder is equipped with dual codec Advanced Streaming Technology and has dual XLR audio inputs, HDMI and 3G-SDI outputs. Another great thing about GY-HM200’s dual codec support is that it allows live streaming of HD videos to hardware decoders such as Wowza streaming engines, Ustream and ProHD Broadcaster servers powered by Zixi. On top of that, it can also allow simultaneous internal recording of a video to SDHC/SDXC media cards. Zixi’s AST offers content-aware error correction and bandwidth shaping for videos uploaded to streaming websites while Streamconfidence from JVC sends real time feedback of streaming status via the viewfinder.
The 4K Ultra HD video can be recorded using the .MOV file format of Quicktime and are also compatible with other editing systems. The camera is also capable of live 4K HDMI output by connecting the monitor with an HDMI cable. Moreover, it is able to downconvert UHD signals using the built-in SDMI and HDMI connectors to standard HD. Other key features include an IP network remote control, metadata editing and FTP clips, built-in mic, 920K color LCD display at 3.5”, .24” color viewfinder, smart focus assist function, 9-button user assignable functions. It also supports wired remote controls and the package includes an AC adapter, SSL-JVC50 7.4V battery and handle unit.
The GY-HM200 4K is easy to use and great for shooting professional videos like documentaries and weddings. Its dual codec support which allows for live streaming HD videos, is perhaps this camera’s unique selling point and the reason we included this 4K camcorder on our list.
JVC GY-HMQ10 4K Camcorder
Considered to be the world’s first hand held camcorder that has the capability of recording real time videos, four times the resolution of full HD. It is designed and created for 4K imaging that is why it has a very sharp zoom lens of F2.8 10x. Moreover, it sports a 1/2-5nch CMOS device that can capture live progressive images of up to 60fps. This is on top of the camera’s capability to function as a Full HD camcorder and capture videos at 1920 x 1080 at 50/60p or 50/60i using a single memory card in the AVCHD format. It is interesting to know that this camcorder uses FAlconbrid processor and uses an MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 for 4 stream separate recording 60fps/50fps/24fps progressive at 144Mbps. Recording is saved to SD-format memory cards with its 4 different SDXC card slots. Also, live 4K output can be sent from the 4 HDMI ports. Wireless connectivity is also optional with the use of LTE and WiFi modems.
Other important features include a built-in optical image stabilizer, 1/2.3″ back-illuminated CMOS sensor with Bayer filter, 4K recording that can last up to two hours, 3-button assignable functions, two audio channels, 3.5” LCD display with touch panel, 0.24” viewfinder and a patented “Focus Assist” function. Great for cinema-quality video recording, this video camera has a 4K Clip Manager software, a Mac-compatible downloadable software that ensures an easy and convenient process to convert recorded files using the GY-HMQ10. This software utility will be able to detect the memory cards in the camera, all of the four, and be able to come up with thumbnails for each scene. By simply right-clicking the thumbnail, conversion to a single Prores is possible and editing can be done using Final Cut Pro X.
The GY-HMQ10 is the world’s first handheld camcorder that allows live streaming and has a razor sharp zoom lens perfect for 4k video capturing. If there are two reasons this camera is one of the best cameras, these are for its powerful Falconbrid processor and its back-illuminated class CMOS sensor.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4
Designed for professional video photographers, there is nothing more to expect from this digital camera than superior quality. Aside from being the world’s first compact camera capable of 4K video shooting, this model sports a 16.05-megapixel Digital Live MOS sensor and is powered by a 4-CPU Venus Engine that can capture RAW stills and JPEG. DCI 4K 4096 x 2160 video at 24p and UHD 4K 3840 x 2160 at 30p/24p. It also has some of the most sought-out features of users like a high-resolution EVF, WiFi connectivity and a touch-sensitive vari-angle screen, among others. It also sports a magnesium alloy body that is weather-proof, making it safe from dust. What makes this hybrid camera likeable is increased resolution that can be enjoyed from the viewfinder and the OLED monitor. Also equipped with NFC technology, the Lumix DMC-GH4 has a high-speed 49-point autofocus both in video and photography as well as in-camera creative controls.
The GH4 is the improved and better version of its predecessor, GH3, and offers a lot of new video features. Apart from 4K video recording capability, it has quicker AF, focus peaking, Zebra—the camera assist function that detects over exposure, uncompressed HDMI output and higher bit rate Full HD, features that make it a must-have piece of camera for both professional videographers and photographers.Videos and images can be recorded in SD/SDHC/SDXC memory cards with outstanding quality and noise-free images at ISO 100 to 1600. Moreover, it allows for numerous video recording formats, from 100 Mbps IPB MOV, MP4, 200 Mbps All-Intra, AVCHD and AVCHD Progressive.
The GH4 is an excellent camera and one of the best Micro Four Thirds models. This camera made it on our list because of its new quad core processor that plays a significant role for a faster AF and overall performance.
Canon EOS C500 4K Cinema
Several years back, Canon unveiled a high-end digital camera designed for professional filmmakers for shooting documentaries to motion pictures. The EOS C500 4K Cinema is capable of 4K resolution video output and best to use for high-res digital productions as well as films. It boasts of a large 8.85 megapixel Super 35mm format CMOS sensor that has a four-channel RGB processing for RAW footage and great for video capture. Moreover, the pixel size of the sensor is much larger than conventional professional camcorders which accounts for superior high-res images with enhanced sensitivity, low noise, shallow depth-of-field and reduced shutter artefacts. As for video recording, it has the ability to record MPEG-2 MXF files at 50 Mbps which is broadcast-ready into two CF memory cards with options for simultaneous and relay recordings. There is also a four-layer built-in ND filter system that provides 2-stop, 4-stop and 6-stop densities. These filters are for keeping the iris open despite shallow-depth-of-field as well as attractive images.
Same as the C500 PL, the EOS 500 Digital Cinema Camera has a body with a modular design, making handling comfortable and expandable. It has a handle that can be removed as well as multi-angle control panel components. Its durable splash and dust resistant magnesium alloy body also boasts of toughness and rigidity. Display is a 4.0-inch, 1.23 million-dot LCD that can be maneuvered back and forth of up to 270 degrees. It can also be mounted on the shoulder for ease of use. Viewfinder has a size of 0.52-inch, 1.55 million-dot viewfinder. Other key features are compatibility with the wide range of EF lenses and the new cinema lock EF lens mount that makes it easier to change lenses.
The EOS C500 4K Cinema has superior 4K imaging quality that makes it a camera choice for shooting digital productions and professional videos for film and documentaries. It belongs to a line of professional video cameras from Canon and was developed for professionals, from freelance videographers to cinematographers.
BlackMagic Design Production Camera 4K
Dubbed as the world’s smallest PL-mount 4K digital film camera with super wide dynamic range, the BlackMagic camera sports a cinematic Super 35 mm sensor with global shutter. It also has a built-in 4K RAW and ProRes SSD recorder, aluminum body, 12 stops of dynamic range, touch screen with metadata entry and the software, Da Vinci Resolve Studio great for shooting, color correcting, editing and finishing 4K digital film. Other key features include the 22mm x 11.88 mm sensor size, RAW resolution of 12-bit RAW files that can be recorded at 4000 x 2160, Iris control that is compatible with manually operated PL mount lens, integrated LCD capacitative touchscreen and 5” screen, integrated mono microphone, onscreen touch screens, mono speaker and mounting options.
Having a compact body, the Blackmagic 4K Production camera now has an updated camera utility and support for more frame guides option. Recording capability is superb with the Ultra HD 4K available in different formats for a wide array of professional video production requirements. The sensor is so versatile that makes shooting videos easy, not to overlook its high end visual loss-free compressed Cinema DNG RAW and Apple ProRes 422 recording capacity. Moreover, the built-in touchscreen makes choosing the settings seamless and the uncompressed audio recording capacity allows audio recording and stores these files into the ProRes video files, making post-production time shorter. Although performance in low light is not perfect, it makes up for video quality when recorded under ideal lighting conditions. Also, it is better to buy an extra battery pack to ensure filming is continuous.
What makes the Blackmagic deserving to be on the top camera list? It has a powerful 35 mm image sensor as well as the EF compatible lens mount designed in an aluminum chassis. Also, its durable design and being light weight adds to the camera’s appeal.
Black Magic Ursa
This high end digital camera ensures workflow on the set whether shooting with a large crew or filming a documentary. What makes the Blackmagic URSA apart from the rest is that every feature is built-in like a new user upgradeable 4.6 Super 35 image sensor with 15 stops, 3 more stops than Blackmagic Design Production Camera, internal dual ProRes and RAW recorders, a 10-inch fold out on set monitor and 12GSD1, to name a few. It is also versatile enough to allow changes in the sensor and lens mount assembly.Just like the Blackmagic 4K, this model was created with professional cinematographers, creative directors and film directors in mind.
The Blackmagic URSA has a wide range of uses such as commercials, television productions, full-length films, music videos, broadcasting and documentaries. Scopes for exposure, audio levels and focus are built-in as well, ensuring that results are of superior quality. This feature minimizes the need for more filming equipment since all that is needed to film a great video or film is already in the Blackmagic URSA. Conversely, camera assistants have a great use for the dedicated screen when they update camera parameters. It also sports dual recorders to make non-stop recording possible even if the media needs to be changed. The CFast card needs only to be loaded into the second recorder when the other one is already full. This allows for recording up to 350 mb/s for faster speeds. It also is complete with a removable modular camera turret that includes the sensors, lens mount and control connections. It has dual XLR mics and video out is 12G-SDI.
What makes the URSA worth our while? It comes with not only two monitors but three for better options for camera functions. Also, the big 10-inch fold out monitor makes it easy to compose shots and can shoot different aspect ratios due to its great overlay options.
Canon EOS-1D C
Created to cater to film makers and broadcasters, this compact 4K DSLR camera can capture 4K video reaching up to 24p from an APS-H crop of its 18 MP full-frame sensor without downscaling. The EOS-1D C is also able to capture 1080p 60 or 50 as well as yield an uncompressed output by connecting to its built-in HDMI connector. Apart from 4K recording, full HD recording from a smaller APS-C-like Super 35mm sub frame or a 1:9 crop. The former allows the use of EF Cinema Zoom lenses. Designed for shooting with cinematic quality, this EOS model is compatible with the lenses of other models in the EOS line. It also has a compact body that makes it convenient and easy to carry as opposed to other bigger 4K cameras. Recording 4K videos has never been more convenient than having to record the content directly into the built-in CF memory cards. This is made possible with the use of a high bit rate Motion JPEG compressions scheme at 8-bit 4:22 rate. Also, due to its size, shooting videos even in unconventional environments has become more manageable. This feature makes the EOS 1D the camera of choice when shooting in crowded areas or covert places without setting up a big crew.
This camera from Canon has an 18.1 megapixel, full frame CMOS sensor capable of creating high-res images and capturing 5184 x 3456 large 6.95 µm pixels for better images. Viewfinder is a pentaprism type. Audio recording is also possible with the built-in mic or an external microphone. The built-in headphone jack makes it easier to listen to audios, an important feature of the EOS-1D C. As for the body design, it is a robust magnesium alloy chassis, built to withstand harsh environments and weather. When it comes to still shooting, the camera shoots 12 fps.
For the rating of this hybrid DSLR camera, the scores for performance and quality are high. One feature that makes this model appealing is the convenience it promises when it comes to listening to audios. Film makers and broadcasters will benefit from this. What makes it more interesting? It is a powerful DSLR that can shoot videos in high quality and squeezes its wonderful features in a small body.
Sony AX53 4K Handycam
This new Sony AX53 4K Handycam is a better and an upgraded version of its top-of-the- line 4K predecessor, the AX33, sporting a new sensor, microphone and lens. Sony has also improved a number of features in this new camcorder, from zooming options to high-frame rate recording. The Zeiss 20x optical zoom lens and a sensor with high sensitivity were squeezed into this compact, palm-sized handycam along with the Exmor R CMOS image sensor designed to optimize 4K video recording.
The body and design of the Sony AX53 4K Handyman is the same as AX33 but more exciting and better in features. Size is a compact as its predecessor but it is equipped with pixel size that is 1.6x more, lens was redesigned to accommodate a wide angle of 26.8mm that results to 20x optimal zoom as well as a 30x 4K Clear image electronic zoom. It also has the capability to be 40x with Full HD settings.
Meanwhile, for a more stable and smoother shooting, this camcorder has also adopted an improved Balance Optical SteadyShot image stabilization technology. This 5-axis image system yields super clear footage even with handheld shooting and mobility. This is also made possible with the performance of the enhanced AF algorithm which is 40% faster with its autofocus speed and the new microphone can capture sound from five various directions with noise reduction.
Display is a 3.0” Clear Photo LCD with 921K dot resolution while connectivity is possible with its WiFi/NFC features.For slow-motion video capture, there is Full HD 120fps high-speed recording. This also makes it possible to capture time-lapse images both fro 4K time-lapse video and in 4K for high resolution.
The Sony AX53 4K Handycam works well even in low light and image stabilization is flawless. Color reproduction looks natural while video playback is possible from a compatible monitor using the HDMI cable.
The Sony AX53 4K Handycam is at par with other top of the line camcorders when it comes to performance. What makes it stand out is its image quality even in low light settings. It is also compact and easy to use even with just one hand. Overall, the AX53 is highly recommendable especially for personal use.