Oxford School of Photography

insights into photography

10 best compact cameras 2016

so you have decided that someone in your life needs a new camera and a compact is the one, this review from Techradar will help you decide

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Compact cameras and the compact camera market have changed a lot over the last few years. Smart phones have decimated the entry-level range of point-and-shoot models that used to be popular and as a result manufacturers have concentrated on putting more advanced features into cameras to make them more attractive.

In addition to a move towards having physically larger sensors to boost image quality, some compact cameras now have lenses with long zoom ranges or wide apertures and there’s better control over exposure along with a much wider range of settings than in the past. Wi-Fi connectivity is also now de rigueur, so you can transfer shots quickly to a phone for sharing on Facebook etc.

Many enthusiast photographers used to be very sniffy about compact digital cameras, but there are now many that make a great alternative to a DSLR or mirrorless system camera.. And those who are new to photography and thinking about stepping up from a smartphone have some pretty sophisticated choices. There are small cameras that can slip in a pocket yet have huge zoom ranges, and large bridge cameras that look like DSLRs, but have a fixed lens and lots of automated easy-to-use options.

These cameras prove that you don’t have to buy a camera that takes interchangeable lenses to get great shots.

If you need a bit more help figuring out what kind of camera you need, then read this article: What camera should I buy?

Or if you already know what kind of camera you want, then check out our more specific compact camera guides:

1. Panasonic LX100

A compact masterpiece, with a big sensor, classic controls and a viewfinder

Sensor: Micro Four Thirds, 12.8MP | Lens: 24-75mm, f/1.7-2.8 | Monitor: 3-inch, 921,000 dots | Viewfinder: EVF | Continuous shooting: 11fps | Movies: 4K | User level: Intermediate/expert

Big sensor, small body
Traditional controls
Prone to lens flare
Modest resolution

2. Fuji X70

Great for those who want a larger than average sensor and traditional controls

Sensor: APS-C, 16.3MP | Lens: 28mm, f/2.8 | Monitor: 3.0-inch touchscreen, 1,040,000 dots | Viewfinder: No | Continuous shooting: 10fps | Movies: 1080p | User level: Expert

High quality APS-C format sensor
Traditional exposure controls
No viewfinder
Fixed focal length lens

3. Sony RX100 IV

Sony’s super-high speed sensor tech is brilliant but pricey

Sensor: 1-inch, 20MP | Lens: 24-80mm, f/1.8-2.8 | Monitor: 3-inch tilt-angle display, 1,228,800 dots | Viewfinder: EVF | Continuous shooting: 5.5fps | Movies: 4K | User level: Intermediate/expert

High-speed shooting and 4K
Compact design
The tech makes it expensive
Only a 3x zoom range

4. Panasonic TZ100 / SZ100

Panasonic’s premium travel camera has a larger sensor than the rest of the range

Sensor: 1-inch type, 20.1MP | Lens: 25-250mm, f/2.8-5.9 | Monitor: 3.0-inch touchscreen, 1,040,000 dots | Viewfinder: EVF | Continuous shooting: 10fps | Movies: 4K | User level: Beginner/Intermediate

1-inch type sensor
10x zoom range lens
Small electronic viewfinder
Fixed screen
Bought the camera now get the course, our Beginners Photography course is perfect for someone with a compact camera
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