Reviews of the Best Compact Cameras

Compact system cameras are amazingly versatile cameras that provide you with superior technology and functionality in a small package. That is, there is no need to carry the heavy bulk of DSLRs while you may get absolutely crispy and high quality pictures always.

Undoubtedly, they are better than the bridge cameras as they provide you with more functionality, better AF points, Full HD film shooting technology and better connectivity such as the Wifi and the likes.

Are you looking forward to purchase the best compact camera for yourself? Read on the list to find the camera doing the best in business—

1. Sony NEX-7

sony nex 7 1Specifications:

• 24.3mp sensor
• OLED Tru-Finder
• Full HD movies with AF Tracking
• built-in flash
• 10fps burst mode

A great mix of power and functionality, this is a powerful camera with a tiny frame that makes it easy to carry. It has a brilliant 24.3MP sensor and also shoots brilliant AF tracked full HD films. Manual controls make it all the easier to carry.

Besides, it is also very fast, shooting at 10 frames per second, and an array of customisable functions and manual controls make it all the better.

There is also an OLED built-in along with a jack for connecting mics and the provision of a hotshoe which simply wows the photographers.

Pros:

• Large, high-resolution sensor
• Decent built-in EVF
• Advanced videography features
• Lots of manual functionality

Cons:

• Fewer optics on offer compared to competition
• Low-light AF performance is sluggish

2. Fujifilm X-Pro 1

fujifilm x pro 1 2Specifications:

• Dual AF mount
• 16.3mp APS-C X-Trans CMOS
• Full HD movies
• Hybrid viewfinder

One of the best by Fujifilm, this camera owns an X-Trans image sensor with a filter pattern of 6×6. There is also an absence of the anti-aliasing feature making the camera produce amazing quality images with lesser noise at higher ISOs.

The camera showcases a retro look with a stylish shutter dial atop the camera. There is also an aperture ring around the lens that makes easy adjustments for aperture-priority, shutter-priority and metered shooting modes at manual setting. Film emulation modes such as the Velvia, Astia and Provia adorn this camera for better pictures.

The image quality is very impressive and natural thanks to the beautiful resolution though at higher ISOs, noise tends to set in.
There is also a high resolution LCD at the back. However, it isn’t touchscreen and there is no creative filter or settings for the creative photographers.

Pros:

• High quality, film-like images
• Smooth bokeh
• Plenty of advanced features
• Excellent hybrid viewfinder

Cons:

• Manual focus with EVF could be slicker

3. Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3

panasonic lumix dmc gh3 3Specifications:

• TruePic VII, Dual Fast AF
• 16.3mp 4/3′ Live MOS sensor
• Tilting touchscreen
• 2360k-dot EVF
• Tilting touchscreen
• Wifi
• Weather proof

A better counterpart of the erstwhile Lumix DMC-GH2, the said model presents to you a nice 16.3MP sensor with Live MOS technology. This makes the GH3 one of the best compact system cameras ever. A lot of professional movie-making features is added to this model. For example, you can shoot 1080p movies at 60 frames per second. At 72-bit, the bit rates are quite high as well, and there is an SMPTE Time Code option as well. Besides, this camera has numerous other features and modern technologies that you may not find in a high-end DSLR, too.

All these when added to a durable, weather conditioned body simply wows the photographers to no end.

Pros:

• Quick and swift controls
• Responsive touchscreen
• Remote control app
• Wi-Fi built-in

Cons:

• Poor Social integration
• No image rating
• No focus peaking

4. Sony Alpha A7R

sony alpha a7r 1 4Specifications:

• Built-in EVF
• 36.4mp full-frame sensor
• Full High Definition movies
• 3-inch 1,230,000 screen
• NFC and Wifi

A great quality with great compactness, that’s Sony Alpha A7R for you. Coupled with brilliant resolution and allowing a low-filter pass, the Sony A7R produces amazing quality images. It also possesses an innovative image processor that claims to be as much as three times faster than the predecessor.

Although it possesses an E-mount lens in the APS-C format, it works great in the crop modes. However, you do wish a full frame E-mount lens in its position, always.

Another great thing about this camera is its lightweight and compactness. Even with the lens on, you can stuff it in your pocket! This along with numerous other features, like a hybrid contrast system and a phase detection technology, a great EVF, and a great AF system make this a great camera.

Pros:

• High resolution sensor
• Filter
• No AA
• Built in Wi-Fi
• Full-frame

Cons:

• Poor battery life
• No touchscreen

5. Olympus OM-D E-M1

olympus om d e m1 5Specifications:

• TruePic VII
• 16.3mp 4/3′ Live MOS sensor
• 2360k-dot EVF
• Dual Fast AF
• Tilting touchscreen
• Wi-Fi
• Weatherproof

A compact system camera meant for the pros, the said model by Olympus provides you with tons of features and specifications that even outshine its predecessor E-M5. The presence of an on-chip auto focusing system with Phase-detection technology makes this camera produce brilliant images always—even better than the Micro Four-Thirds DSLRs by Olympus.

Customizable controls, brilliant Electronic Viewfinder and a weather-sealed body makes way for an amazing camera. For easy sharing, editing and transfer, the camera is equipped with an advanced Wifi technology.

Another beautiful feature is its ability to shoot photographs at higher ISOs without much noise.

Pros:

• Numerous physical controls
• Weather sealed
• Great image quality
• Weather sealed

Cons:

• Expensive
• Screen not nicely articulated
• Some operational errors.

6. Panasonic Lumix DMC-G6

panasonic lumix dmc g6 6Specifications:

• Venus Engine processor
• 16.05mp Sensor with Live MOS
• 1440k-dot OLED LVF
• High Speed AF
• Wi-Fi and NFC

Compatible with an array of lenses, this camera is a winner when it comes to its compatibility with lenses—not just with lenses from the same brand but with those of Sigma and Olympus MFT, too.

This prompts the creativity and leads you to better image quality. Enhanced articulated touchscreen along with an array of wonderful features make this camera all the better for applying vivid creativity.

It comes with a Venus Image Processor that enhances the continuous shooting speed to 7 frames per second along with an even faster AF system.

It comes with an OLED 1,440k-dot EVF that is absolutely bright and clear—visible in low light, too. You can click raw files and make use of the inbuilt NFC and WiFi systems.

Pros:

• Fully articulated screen
• Superb touchscreen
• Filters can be used with RAW
• Viewfinder

Cons:

• 16mp sensor
• Creative Control unavailable in the advanced modes

7. Olympus PEN Lite E-PL5

olympus pen lite e pl5 7

Specifications:

• TruePic VI processor
• 16.1mp 4/3″ (MFT) Live MOS sensor
• Art Filters
• Full HD Movies
• Tiltable touchscreen

One of the lightest cameras in this list, this tiny camera comes with a sensor of 16.1mp. It is a perfect balance of user-friendly features and powerful technologies for the perfect image capture.

It also covers a wide range of ‘must-haves’ like a rubber grip, high definition movies, tilting touchscreen and a great user interface.

Like the other Micro Four-Thirds, this camera, too, possesses Olympus’ best Digital Art Filters that allow the photographer to go creative in myriad ways than one!

Pros:

• Extensive range of lenses available
• Good touch screen

Cons:

• No remote camera control with FlashAir
• Screen isn’t fully articulated
• No EVF

8. Sony NEX-5T

sony nex 5t 8Specifications:

• Hybrid AF System
• 16.1mp APS-C sensor
• Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity
• Tilting touchscreen

If you want a camera that offers you with amazing connectivity for sharing, editing and transferring images, the Sony NEX-5T is the “it” thing for you. This camera boasts of not only a well implemented WiFi system but also houses the NFC technology for easy transfer.

This means you can edit and share your fully HD films and stills of 16.1MP using 5T’s amazing DSLR-type sensor. Sony also provides you with an array of camera applications that you may download for free (mostly) for better picture effects.

For better self portraits, the 921k-dot rear LCD screen can be tilted by 180 degrees.

Pros:

• High-resolution touchscreen
• DSLR-sized sensor
• Wi-Fi and NFC
• Compact dimensions

Cons:

• Limited options on Sony’s PlayMemories Store
• Bad hotshoe attachment
• No built-in flash

9. Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7

panasonic lumix dmc gx7 9Specifications:

• 16mp Live MOS sensor
• Flip-up EVF
• 3-inch tilting LCD
• Built-in flash
• Full HD movies
• Wi-Fi and NFC

One of the best Micro Four-Thirds cameras around, the Lumix DMC-GX7 provides the user an array of innovative features to choose from, such as a fine tilting EVF, a LCD touchscreen and beautiful wifi technology. This leads the camera to create amazing videos and still photographs.

It compiles all the beautiful features that you would want in your mirrorless camera, and does a fine job at that. Besides, if you want a camera that packs in performance and stylish appeal together, this is the best one around.

Pros:

• Fast contrast detection AF system
• Responsive touchscreen
• Pop-up EVF
• Wi-Fi with NFC

Cons:

• Screen not fully articulated
• Tracking AF is sluggish
• Viewfinder refresh rate needs improvement

10. Fujifilm X-E2

fujifilm x e2 10Specifications:

• EXR Processor II
• Fast AF
• 16.3mp X-Trans CMOS II sensor
• Full HD movies
• Wi-Fi
• EVF

This camera packs in some great advanced features as compared to its predecessor. It is provided with the X-Trans sensor including a phase-detection AF system in place of a contrast-detection AF system. A higher resolution EVF with 2,360k dots along with a continuous speed of 7 frames per second makes this camera all the better.

A typically lightweight camera, it makes use of a Lens Modulation Optimizer, that you can switch on in the different menus for shooting in order to better the performance of its Fujinon X-mount lens.

There is a shutter dial and an aperture-ring around the lens for swift image capture. The optical electronic viewfinder does a great job as well without any hassle. Although the touchscreen is not smooth-running, the presence of a Quick Menu for adjusting settings somehow makes up for this.

Pros:

• 920,000-dot LCD
• 2,360k EVF
• Improved AF

Cons:

• Fixed screen
• No touchscreen
• Advanced Filters but no JPEG

11. Canon EOS M

canon eos m 11Specifications:

• Full HD movies with AF-C
• 18mp APS-C CMOS sensor
• DIGIC 5 processor
• 3-inch touchscreen

Canon’s CSCs has never been much praiseworthy before EOS M. It packs in some brilliant features alongside an APS-C CMOS sensor providing 18MP resolution. Thanks to the brilliant Digic 5 Image Processor along with a great shooting mode providing Full HD resolution makes way for great images, even in low light sensitivity.

Great autofocus system that works fine while shooting films as well, and a quick touchscreen make this camera a must-have.

Pros:
• Large 18mp APS-C sensor
• DIGIC 5 processor
• Robust build quality
• Top-notch touchscreen

Cons:

• Lacks a decent grip
• No optional EVF
• No built-in flash

12. Panasonic Lumix GM1

panasonic lumix gm1 12Specifications:

• 3-inch touchscreen
• Light Speed AF, Wi-Fi
• 16mp Live MOS MFT sensor
• Full HD movies

Here’s a camera that is packed with functionality yet weighs as low as 204g. One of the first things that you will notice in this camera is its beautiful touchscreen that is well articulated to suit the purpose of the photographers. It also possesses super swift and fast paced settings and navigating menus, and its AF functions absolutely brilliantly, too.

A swift WiFi connectivity alongside great looks makes this camera stand out among the rest.

Pros:

• Very compact
• Wi-Fi connectivity
• Touchscreen
• Built-in digital filters

Cons:

• No viewfinder
• Manual functionality doesn’t work with digital filters
• No integral hotshoe

13. Fujifilm X-A1

fujifilm x a1 13Specifications:

• Tiltable 3-inch LCD
• 16.3 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor
• Wi-Fi
• Full HD movies

Another brilliant camera from Fujifilm, this camera features a great CMOS sensor with 16.3MP resolution. It has an award-winning and easy interface with a body as light as feather yet brilliantly jammed with features and brand new technologies.

The LCD screen can be tilted to click great images, and provides a detailed display of Live View and Full HD films.

There is also a built-in wifi system for better sharing and transfer.

Pros:

• Twin command dials for manual control
• Large APS-C sensor
• High-resolution tilt-able LCD
• Wi-Fi connectivity

Cons:

• No viewfinder
• No touchscreen

14. Sony NEX-3N

sony nex 3n 14Specifications:

• 16.1mp APS-C sensor
• Full HD video
• 3-inch LCD 180° tiltable

Here’s the world’s lightest and smallest camera to feature an APS-C sensor that is almost as much as the size of a SLR.

Apart from this, the model also features a great Full High Definition video recording system and a 180-degree tiltable LCD screen. So, click as many selfies as you want, and set the social media on fire!

Pros:

• 180-degree rotating screen
• Large APS-C sensor
• Full HD movie mode
• Faithfully-coloured, clean images

Cons:

• No touchscreen
• Lacks Advanced Settings

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My name is Chris and I am the owner and operator of CamcorderChris.com. For over 10 years I have worked with computers, servers, video camcorders, software editing tools, and many other areas of information technology.

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Author: Chris

My name is Chris and I am the owner and operator of CamcorderChris.com. For over 10 years I have worked with computers, servers, video camcorders, software editing tools, and many other areas of information technology.

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