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What’s the Best Digital Camera under 300 Dollars? (2015 Report)

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View of the Canon Powershot XS700 HS model

In the age of advanced technology becoming more and more available at the level of basic consumer goods, there’s no surprise that we have all sorts of devices in our possession which are capable of taking decent quality photographs. From our smartphones to the webcams incorporated into our laptops and tablets, it seems that almost every gadget we use is capable of fulfilling that role, which shows us two things: first of all, how much photography has advanced and spread from being a specialized and restricted activity to being available to the everyday person, and second of all, how much the average consumer needs to have the ability to take photos easily. In what follows, we will detail why having a decent camera is more than an ornamental whim, and some pointers on how to find the best digital camera under 300 dollars in 2015.

Why Every Device Has a Camera Attached to It

Indeed, this has become a requirement and a useful trait in almost any gadget which accompanies us, if we think of how often we may need to snap a shot of something we want to show our friends or our family, or – though we don’t necessarily want to think about it – when we may need to snap a quick photo of someone whom we feel aggressed or threatened by. Therefore, as you can see, the need to be able to take photos at all times goes beyond a geeky whim or a passing artsy fancy of pretending you’re more of an artist that you’ll actually dedicate the time to become, but a real necessity. Distances are also becoming more and more natural in the landscape of modern life, and when your mom lives in a different city but you want to show her the consistency of your chicken pot pie dough just to make sure you got it right, the easiest thing to do is to snap a shot of what you want to show her and send it via an instant message.

View of the Canon Powershot XS700 HS model

The same thing goes for a squirrel passing on the rooftop of your house: perhaps the sight of it exhilarates you and you’d like to share the moment and the news with one of your old friends who you used to go mountain hiking with, since it’s been years since you’ve laid eyes on a squirrel together. Ok, all corny examples aside, it’s true that the urge to photograph everything we experience and then sharing it can prove to be a bit too much at times (like flooding our friends’ newsfeeds with instagrammed photos of our lunches day after day). But that doesn’t diminish the fact that indeed, the standards and challenges of life have changed and the ability to visually document what we stumbled upon has becomes as much of an addition as it has become a real necessity, for various reasons. Therefore, it’s very understandable and reasonable why all of our devices and gadgets are equipped with photo cameras, even if we don’t plan of exploring the world of photography seriously anytime soon.

Why You Still Need a Digital Camera

Under these circumstances, you may wonder, why would anyone want to also own a proper digital camera, if all the other devices they already own can take decent pictures, and if the owner isn’t planning on pursuing this hobby seriously anytime soon? Well, the answer is that if you buy a proper digital camera under a certain price threshold – say, $300 – the image quality and ease that you can attain are far superior to the photos you will ever take with a smartphone or tablet. Even if you don’t buy yourself a fancy expensive camera, you will still want to take pretty pictures in a high resolution at some point. Smartphone and tablets are suitable only for spontaneous shots of something you unexpectedly encounter, but the truly beautiful family albums won’t be made with smartphones or tablets, we assure you.

How to Choose the Best Camera under 300 Dollars

Therefore, for the photos you truly want to take and keep for more than a few days, only a proper photo camera will do, but we understand that you don’t want to spend a small fortune on one since you don’t plan to pursue this hobby more seriously. The good news is that the technological advancements of the past 5 years have made all digital cameras on the market become so high performance and so widely available to the average consumer, that you can easily buy a very good camera today for only a fraction of the price it had only a couple of years back. Under the $300 limit now lie cameras with specs that would have easily cost you $1000 in 2010 and so on.

This is our list of the top 5 suggestions for the best digital camera under 300 dollars in 2015:

  • Canon Powershot SX700 HS (pictured above) – This is one of the best sold models of the brand, recommended especially as a travel camera, because of its compact format (the entry level of the three main camera types) and its good recording quality for short videos. However, we can think of another good use which would make this camera model desirable for young parents as well: through its rather high quality video optics, the Canon Powershot SX700 HS is also ideal for capturing the unique moments of a child’s first months or years. You can buy it for $279.00 on Amazon.
  • Nikon Coolpix P600 – This camera model isn’t all that compact and could easily be considered a transition model to a more serious DSLR model, but it’s available for a small price and can be easily wielded by someone without much experience in photography. If you’re attracted by the specs and quality of a sturdier, almost pro-like camera, but you fear the complicated manual settings that come with it, then this is the model you need. It costs around $289 or more, depending on the extras.
  • Canon Powershot SX510 HS – Even if it looks more professional than its SX700 brother, this Powershot model is a bit less impressive than it, but comes with 2 advantages. First of all, its price is about $100 lower, and second of all, this model is equipped with a 30x zoom (hence the large looking objective that gives it its pro-like appearance). This large zoom capacity means that you can take good photos from a large distance, making it the ideal camera for travelling. If you’re the outdoors and nature type, this is the camera you need. It costs around $210.
  • Sony Cyber-shot DSC-WX50 – This tiny camera packs a pretty high performance for such a small and compact gadget. It’s ideal for a lady, especially since it’s so slim and comes in a wide range of classy colors. The power of its shooting and the quality of the images and videos it can produce is higher than you could actually need if you’re not planning to go into pro territory anytime soon. It costs only $230 dollars.
  • Kodak EasyShare Z5010 – This vintage-looking little camera is as good as any of its more modern-looking competitors, but it has the advantage of running on AA batteries, making it easier to handle for family use and family road trips. Despite its traditional power source, the camera has ideal connectivity to other devices, so sharing your photos easily and transferring them between gadgets won’t be a problem. Also, who doesn’t feel at least a little bit nostalgic over Kodak cameras? This model costs around $253.



Don Phillips

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