best 4k camcorder

Best 4K Camcorder 2018: Buy The Perfect 4K Video Camera Today

A camcorder’s primary objective is to record and capture the story with the best quality. Capturing your content for film is key. To be able to do this, you’ll need a device that has an innovative lens and advanced mirror setups and sensors that can produce images and video with dynamic resolution. If this is your requirement, an Ultra-HD 4K camcorder is what you need.

In this upcoming article, We will be discussing what some of the best 4K camcorders on the market are. If you’re thinking of buying one for yourself, I invite you to dive in and read on, learn more about what these tools can do for you, which best fit your budget, and what you are trying to accomplish - from hobbyist to professional.

There is also a selection of price matched with capabilities. We hope you enjoy our complete guide, tricks, and tips around these ‘storytelling’ devices.

Best 4K Camcorder : Top Picks By Our Experts

Panasonic HC-V180K

Best Value for Money

Panasonic HC-V180K Full HD Camcorder
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    Costs less than $200 
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    Solid image and video quality 
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    Great audio capabilities 

Rated by: Julia

Sony FDRAX33 

Best Of The Best

Sony FDRAX33 HD Video Recording Handycam Camcorder
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    Superb image quality 
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    Can create video highlights
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    Lightweight 

Rated by: Julia

Sony FDRX3000

For The Adventurer 

Sony FDRX3000 Underwater Camcorder
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    Can be used in rough terrains
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    Great image stabilization
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    Stylish all-white color

Rated by: Julia

Sony FDRAX53/B HD Video Recording Camcorder

Quick Summary

Sony FDRAX53 HD Video Recording Camcorder

Rated by: Julia

The Sony FDRAX53 video camera is a solid, entry-level option that provides great features without being too heavy on the wallet. It comes in sleek, all-black color that looks very professional, and weighs just about 2 pounds. This size makes it easy to carry around and mobilize.

Armed with strong technical features, this piece of equipment provides users with crisp and clear imagery. It has 4x Full HD resolution, 4K time-lapse abilities, and pixels that are 1.6 times larger in size than normal ones.

A built-in image stabilizer is also installed to reduce blurry or distorted videos. Finally, a Fast Intelligent AF helps to minimize lens motion and improve response time when capturing subjects.

The FDRAX53 also allows you to zoom in and out more efficiently with its 20x optical characteristics. Best of all, you can easily adjust all the settings on this device to fit your specific needs. Pro videographers use this a lot to keep flexibility, and so can you.

PROS

  • Provides realistic images
  • Has a built-in mic
  • Clear LCD screen
  • Ability to be connected to Wi-Fi
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    Flexible file formats you can choose from
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    Can capture moving images without risk of blurriness

CONS

  • Stabilizer automatically stops when attached to a tripod
  • Reports of slow focus time
  • Cannot record in 4K when viewing on an external device

Sony FDRAX33 HD Video Recording Camcorder 

Quick Summary

Sony FDRAX33 HD Video Recording Handycam Camcorder

Rated by: Julia

Another possible option from Sony is the FDRAX33 camcorder. Its state of the art system allows you to record videos in either 4K or 1080 HD resolution. As a result, all the shots you take are in 4x Full HD with a QFHD of 3840x2160.

This video camera also comes with a newly innovated ZEISS Vario-Sonnar lens that allows you to capture the grandeur of landscape views as well as zoom into specific details of your subjects.

Heightened pixel readout and an improved image stabilizer work together in offsetting camera shaking to reduce haziness significantly. Sporting events or moving objects will feel like they’re in slow motion through this camera.

Connectivity features are also a notable strength of the FDRAX33. You can use your mobile device to control the camcorder through the PlayMemories mobile application. Additionally, you’ll be able to connect this device to your Wi-Fi network to instantly stream videos and upload files automatically.

Integrating this with other cameras to create different viewing angles is also a possibility. The ability to link this with other devices with other tools only increases its flexibility. What you can do with this camera seems only limited by your creativity and imagination.

If you’re looking for one of the best video cameras under $4000, this is a strong candidate.

PROS

  • Compact size and lightweight design
  • Instinctively creates highlight video from existing movie clips
  • Flexible connectivity abilities
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    Lower than usual price
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    Very complete practical advantages

CONS

  • Reduced images quality when shooting in poorly-lit locations
  • Lack of internal memory space
  • Smaller pixels

Rraycom 4K Video Camcorder

Quick Summary

Rraycom 4K Video Camcorder

Rated by: Julia

At first glance, the Rraycom 4K video camcorder looks like a camera used by news reporters. It has a 0.39x super wide-angle lens and a large external microphone mounted on the top.

The 3.0” LCD screen, which can be rotated as much as 270 degrees, is meant for you or your subject to see exactly what is being recorded.

Like most video cameras, it comes equipped with Ultra HD 4K resolution to provide you with incredible picture quality.

The 13-megapixel sensor, 48 MP video resolution, and 16X digital zoom are installed to further enhance the images caught by this device.

Manual controls found near the camcorder’s handle allow you to easily shift between photo or video mode. With this setup, you’ll also be able to adjust the other settings without much hassle. Overall, the Rraycom 4K video camcorder provides you with a good balance of technical and design features. It is not the best one in the market, but you can certainly do much worse.

PROS

  • Perfect for conducting interviews
  • 12-month customer service warranty 
  • Up to 4.5 hours battery life 
  • Can be controlled using the NovaCam mobile app
  • Affordable price

CONS

  • Does not have quality image stabilizer
  • Image depth can still be improved 

Ablue 4K Video Camcorder 

Quick Summary

Ablue 4K Ultra HD Camcorder

Rated by: Julia

As we are enumerating the best 4k camcorders, we cannot do so without discussing the Ablue 4K video camera.

This is a reasonably priced model that sports an ergonomic design. Its compressed size makes it comfortable to use, bring around, and even store.

Despite its small stature, it provides users with realistic footage, thanks to its 4K HD functions, 30 FPS, and 2880x2160 image resolution. Be sure to watch the video on your computer or TV so that you can truly maximize the viewing experience.

The Ablue camcorder comes with a super wide-angle lens, aside from its already installed macro lens, to encapsulate different views and settings. You can easily scroll through photos using its 3.0” LCD touchscreen, and customize setting using its manual control. All these are pretty easy to understand and are extremely user-friendly.

If you’re looking for a video camera that’s perfect for beginners, this is a strong option to consider.

PROS

  • Has infrared night vision capabilities
  • Great option for beginner videographers
  • Comes with an extra lithium battery 
  • Easily share files among devices 

CONS

  • Picture quality on LCD screen is poor
  • No image stabilizer

Sony FDRX3000 Underwater Camcorder 

Quick Summary

Sony FDRX3000 Underwater Camcorder

Rated by: Julia

If you’re a diving aficionado looking for a quality underwater video camera, look no further than the Sony FDR3000.

It’s smaller than other models to give users a firm grasp when using it. This quality is extremely important to withstand harsh waves and current in the ocean.

Since most of your subjects are moving fishes, it comes equipped with Balanced Optical SteadyShot, the ultimate tool in image stabilization. This means that the camera lens moves automatically to compensate for any abrupt motions. As a result, image haziness is reduced significantly. 

The Zeiss Tessar lens also helps you modify viewing angles and zoom in and out more efficiently. You’ll be able to focus on a certain object as you are shooting.

Lastly, a splash proof and heavy-duty body is designed to withstand harsh conditions. This protects the insides of the camera and allows you to use the FDRX3000 for a very long time.

PROS

  • Can be used in extreme conditions
  • Sturdy case
  • The camera can be controlled using the Live-View remote
  • Amazing image stabilization
  • Provisions for mounting accessories

CONS

  • Limited battery life
  • No touchscreen interface 
  • Need a protective case to go underwater

Sony FDR-AX700 4K HDR Camcorder 

Quick Summary

Sony FDR-AX700 4K HDR Camcorder

Rated by: Julia

Sony is really one of the leading producers of quality High Dynamic Range (HDR) camcorders in the world, so its no surprise how many contenders they have on our best 4k camcorders list. The latest example is the Sony FDR-AX700.

With a standard price of just below $1900, this piece of equipment is meant for intermediate or professional videographers, who can maximize its advanced features.

This specific model provides users with 3840x2160 screen resolution and HDR quality videos, a killer combo that ensures all images captured are crisp, vibrant, and have a lot of depth to them. It helps bring out the tiniest details in the photos.

The FDR-AX700 comes with 12x optical zoom lens well as a number of different autofocus features. Using these tools, you’ll be able to focus on whatever subject you’d like, no matter the distance. It also comes enhanced with Clear Image Zoom technology, which ensures that images remain clear despite the amount of zoom you use.

These things I mentioned are just some of the reasons why the Sony FDR-AX700 is one of the best 4k video cameras. Ultimately, it blends high-class technical qualities, a practical design, and advanced settings to make it one of the most complete features we’ve seen in a long time.

PROS

  • Provides realistic video quality
  • 960 FPS video speed
  • Dual memory cards can be stored
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    Larger LCD screen
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    Quick auto-focus response time

CONS

  • Limited manual controls
  • Expensive

Kenuo 4K Camcorder

Quick Summary

Kenuo 4K Camcorder

Rated by: Julia

The Kenuo 4K camcorder is one of the cheapest options available on the market, yet it still provides very useful features.

It comes with 4K Full HD abilities, 13-megapixel CMOS sensor, and 2880x2160 video resolution. The imagery produced by this device is vibrant and very clear.

A large microphone is found on the top of the camera. This helps you capture crisp audio content as you record the video too.

If you’ll be doing a lot of interviews or speeches, this is a great feature to have. The LCD screen can also be rotated so your interviewee can know exactly what is being shot.

The Kenuo 4K also has a very flexible lens, which can be used in wide-angle or close-up shots, depending on the need. This, together with its lightweight design, allows you to bring this camcorder everywhere you go. Whether it’s indoors, outdoors, or wherever you go, this is a gadget you should always have by your side.

PROS

  • Can be connected with several outputs
  • Use the mobile application to control the camera
  • Easy to carry around 
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    12 months warranty 
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    Low price

CONS

  • Seems a little bulky
  • Moving photos become a bit blurry

Panasonic HC-V180K Full HD Camcorder

Quick Summary

Panasonic HC-V180K Full HD Camcorder

Rated by: Julia

If your top priority is to find a camera with an affordable price, the Panasonic HC-V180K could be the one for you.

In spite of this, it still provides consumers with HD 1080 recording, a 5-axis image stabilizer, and the ability to zoom in up to 90x in distance.

This means that you’ll be able to maintain a high level of video quality even when shooting from a far distance or focusing on moving objects.

A 2-channel microphone is meant to aid you in all your audio recording needs.

As you adjust the zoom button, so does this device’s aural reach, so you are assured of clear sound from any possible distance. You’ll be able to enjoy the best of both worlds with this machine.

The HC-V180K also allows you to add filters to the subjects you are taking, right as you are using it. This gives you the freedom to release your artistic creativity and customize different scenes exactly the way you like. It lessens the editing process because, from the get-go, you are already achieving the look that you desire.

PROS

  • Affordable price
  • Ergonomic design
  • Different filters are readily available
  • Good audio features

CONS

  • Lacks manual controls
  • Minimal improvement in low-light areas
  • No Wi-Fi connectivity

Sony FDR-AX100/B 4K Video Camera with 3.5-Inch LCD (Black)

Quick Summary

sony fdr-ax100/b

Rated by: Julia

If you’re looking for the perfect blend of quality and price, the Sony FDR-AX100/B 4K Video Camera is the perfect choice for you. The camcorder is packed with features and customizations options to help you produce only the best videos and take the perfect photos.

With its 4k Ultra HD resolution at 3840 x 2160 pixels, this video recorder allows you to capture videos of the highest quality at 30 frames per second.

This resolution will capture all the finest details of your subject producing vibrant, crisp footages at the peak of realism.

If you prefer Full HD resolution, also known as 1080p, you can shoot this type of video at a higher frame rate of 60 fps. But if you really want your videos to capture the high-speed action for slow motion viewing later, an even faster frame rate of 120 fps is possible at lower resolution levels.

You can also use this camcorder to capture lifelike images with all the rich textures and color hues of the original. The device allows you to choose from different images sizes such as 20 Megapixels, 14.2 MP (16:9), 15 MP (4:3) or take 2.1 MP images while recording a video.

The camcorder has WiFi connectivity making it easier for you to transfer video and picture files to your smartphone or even use them to remote control the video recorder. It supports NFC or near field communication so all you need to do is touch your NFC-compatible device to the Sony FDR-AX100 to establish a connection between the two devices.

The gadget comes with features to ensure that nothing will spoil your perfect shot such as built-in ND filters, red-eye reduction, optical SteadyShot image stabilization, NightShot infrared system and the 12 x optical zoom. Professionals will love the cam as it allows for manual customizations of its settings.

Despite its strong technical aspects, even amateur videographers will feel right at home when using this camcorder. Surprisingly, the device is also  easy to use and won’t require much technical know-how from its user to get started. This makes it ideal not only for professionals but also for casual users as well.

PROS

  • Very high-quality 4K videos
  • With 12x Optical Zoom
  • Capable of recording 120 frames per second videos
  • Built-in ND filters
  • Red-eye reduction
  • Face detection
  • Versatile video output - XAVC S, AVCHD or MP4 HD formats
  • Optical SteadyShot Image Stabilization
  • NightShot infrared system
  • Ultra-clear Images w/ options for 14.2 MP, 15 MP and 20 MP-sized photos
  • Options for manual adjustments of various settings – perfect for pros

CONS

  • Freezes at times while changing frame rates and resolutions
  • A bit bulky 
  • Simultaneously accessing the menu’s functions while using the focus button is tricky
  • It’s expensive compared to other camcorders

Things To Consider When Buying A 4K Camcorder 

1.Image Quality

Obviously, the most important thing to consider is the quality of video the camcorder is able to capture. From the color, details, and even the overall ambiance, you want your recordings to see and feel as realistic as possible. Be sure that this is still the standard even when shooting moving or zoomed-in objects. This is a true test to see if a camcorder’s technical features are really strong or not.

2. Price

There’s no need to splurge on an expensive video camera, especially if you’re not planning to use it professionally. A practical price to target when buying your first camcorder is probably $400 to $600. This will give you enough technical features to expand your experience, while also staying in the affordability range.

Before pulling the trigger on a purchase, be sure to remember that value for money is everything in these types of deals.

3. Connectivity

Another important factor to consider is its adaptability with other outputs or accessories. Having a device with high connectivity makes file sharing incredibly easy. You can instantly save your video straight to your computer or view it from a different external device. Some models even allow you to connect with the Wi-Fi and upload content on the Internet.

4k camcorders connectivity

Additionally, also look for options that have HDMI ports, VGA adaptors, or spaces you can attach a tripod too. As much as you can, you want to maximize the uses that your video camera will do for you. Having extended connectivity does exactly this.

4. Lens Capability

A lens is basically a camera’s eye. So to be able to provide quality images; you need a strong and flexible kind. Looks for selections that provide you with several zoom options to choose from. Wide angles are usually great for capturing landscapes, while optical lenses are good for focusing on details. Choose accordingly depending on your own personal needs.

5. Image Stabilization

Unless you are shooting your video inside a studio where everything is staged, unwanted camera motion is unavoidable which could potentially ruin the footage. As such, always choose a video recorder with an image stabilization feature as it will help reduce camera shake and save your video from being ruined.

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There are two types of stabilization employed by camcorders – electronic, also known as digital, and optical image stabilization. The digital method relies on software while the optical stabilization actually uses moving parts of the glass inside the lens to compensate for movement, reducing shake and improving photo and video quality.

Depending on the mechanism’s complexity, there is a 3-axis type or even 5-axis image stabilizations, the latter can stabilize five different motion types. Optical means to stabilize camera shake is more effective than digital.

6. Zoom

There are times when you just can’t get near enough to your subject to record the perfect video such as when you are shooting the wildlife or sports. This is where a camcorder’s zoom comes in handy.

Just like the image stabilization, the zoom feature can be achieved by either electronic or optical means. Digital zoom simply crops up the image and enlarge the section. Optical zoom, on the other hand, adjusts the lens to make the target appear nearer but cameras with this type of zoom are generally more expensive than their digital counterparts. If you have the budget, go for optical ones.

7. Battery Life

Another detail that you might overlook when making your purchase is the camcorder’s battery life. It would be a disaster if you get a video recorder containing all the features you need, only to find out later that the battery does not last long enough to cover the activity you plan to record.

Remember to check out the specs section and see the camcorder’s maximum record time. This is the length of time it can record videos before the battery runs out.

8. Camera Size and Weight

You might be too busy checking out a video recorder’s feature and fail to take into consideration its size and weight. Will it fit into your existing luggage? Are you comfortable carrying around a camera with such a huge size while taking a hike or going on a trail?

The same is true for weight. If a three-pound camera that contains all the features you love is a bit too heavy for you, then a lighter model without some of the unnecessary features might be a more sensible choice.

9. Lighting

You won’t always record videos under perfect lighting conditions. Before you make a purchase, be sure to check out first if the video recording you are eyeing on is capable of recording good-quality videos even in a low light scenario.

10. Waterproofing and Durability

If you plan to take your camcorder with you on your outdoor adventures, be sure your gadget is up for the challenge. At the very least, it should be able to take on a few water splashes and falls. Before making a purchase, make sure the model is rugged enough for the outdoors.

Conclusion:

In the debate over what the best 4K camcorder is, my pick would have to be the Sony FDRAX33. It may look very plain, but beneath its seemingly underwhelming exterior is a camera packed with great technical and practical features.

However, it is fine if you do not agree with my pick. Ultimately, it’s your preferences that matters as what’s the best fit for me might not necessarily be the best camcorder for you. After all, you have your own set of considerations and priorities when making the purchase.

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