Best Digital Cameras Under $100

Just because you’re on a low budget doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the better things in life. While not the absolute best, cheaper digital cameras can work wonders in taking the perfect shot. You need to know where to look.

Top Digital Cameras Under $100

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A digital camera uses a digital sensor to record photos and videos on a memory card that can later be uploaded to an electronic device, such as a computer or a smartphone.

Digital cameras have ushered in a new era of photography, providing tens of thousands of new features. And yes, some of these features are nearly impossible to render on an analog camera.

These cameras are getting increasingly cheaper, with some being as low as $100.

Of course, the higher-end DSLR cameras would cost you more. But brands like Nikon and Fujifilm have some affordable options too.

So without further ado, we present to you the best digital cameras under $100.

The Best Digital Cameras Under $100

1) Nikon COOLPIX A10

Nikon COOLPIX A10 Digital Camera

Features

  • 16.1 MP resolution.
  • 720p HD video resolution.
  • 2.7 inch LCD (QVGA).
  • Nikkor Glass Lens.
  • CCD image sensor.

The Nikon Coolpix series blew all barriers in its days, and even now, the digital camera line is highly popular. It’s highly affordable and packs a punch of specs.

Don’t be dissuaded by the “refurbished” label though, as this Coolpix includes all the accessories and a 90-day warranty.

Featured in this Nikon Coolpix A10 is a relatively high resolution of 16.1 MP. It also has a CCD image sensor that aids in taking the most bewitching photos. And the lens is a Nikkor glass lens made for 5x optical zoom.

Apart from that, the camera allows you to shoot videos at 720p HD. And to reduce camera shake, the Coolpix A10 has employed the best Electronic Vibration Reduction.

This bundle comes with a weather-resistant camera case, along with a 16 GB memory card and card reader. You also get a cleaning solution, and a few microfibers wipe to help maintain good camera health. The strap and the AA batteries are also included.

All in all, the Coolpix shoots some amazing scenes. It has excellent color rendition, and the optical zoom seals the deal, at least given the budget.

Pros

  • Reduces camera shake.
  • High quality in a low budget.
  • Great for outdoor scenes.
  • Up to factory standards.

Cons

  • Bad low-light performance.
  • It comes without a manual.

Best Place to Buy

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2) Sony DSCW800/B 20.1 MP 

Sony DSCW800 B 20.1 MP Digital Camera

Features:

  • 20.1 MP Super HAD CCD sensor.
  • 5x optical zoom.
  • Up to 40x digital zoom.
  • Wide and Telephoto Mode.
  • Panorama Mode.

The Sony DSCW800 camera not only has a higher resolution but also has other features such as a panorama and a 5x optical zoom.

And the best part is that it’s not even too costly. So you can still stay within a reasonable range and get some amazing features.

Overview:

Right off the bat, you’ll notice the big leap Sony has made in terms of image quality. This camera has a 20.1 MP Super HAD CCD sensor.

The W in DSCW800 stands for “Wide” and is a nod to the F3.2 maximum aperture. The Sony also shoots at F6.4 in Telephoto mode, making portraits a Sony specialty.

Furthermore, the camera has a 5x optical zoom. This is a standard for most digital cameras of the time and price range, so it’s nothing too extraordinary.

But the digital zoom has been highly improved upon. This camera can zoom in digitally up to 40x, depending on the nature and mode of the photo.

Pros:

  • Highly improved digital zoom.
  • Excellent image stabilization.
  • Higher-resolution images.
  • Works in all settings.
  • Retains image quality.

Cons:

  • The USB cable is not standard.
  • Shutter speed needs improvement.

Best Place to Buy

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3) Fujifilm Instax Mini 70 

Fujifilm Instax Mini 70

Features:

  • Selfie-mode with selfie mirror.
  • Automatic exposure control.
  • Hi-key mode.
  • Self-timer shots.
  • Landscape mode.

The Fujifilm Instax series has seen some of the best analog and digital instant cameras. And the Instax Mini 70 is no different from the rest of the line.

What sets this model aside is that it uses a smaller film. So the images aren’t as wide as the Wide Film counterparts. However, if that’s what you’re looking for, then the Instax Mini 70 is a perfect choice.

Overview:

It’s not only the film that’s small, but the entire camera body is also light and compact. To be more specific, it weighs only 8 ounces and can fit inside a man’s pant pocket.

This is the first Fujifilm Instax camera to feature a Selfie mode. In this mode, the camera automatically adjusts exposure and focus for the most breathtaking selfies. It even includes a selfie mirror for it.

The Fujifilm Instax Mini 70 is best known for its automatic exposure control. Now your photos will have balanced exposure between the subject and the background.

This camera also features a macro mode, where you can take extreme close-ups of subjects. The minimum distance of focus is 11.8 inches.

Pros:

  • Great for low-light flash images.
  • It comes with a tripod mount.
  • Perfect for brighter subjects.
  • Great for selfies.
  • Wide magnification range.

Cons:

  • It comes with no film.

Best Place to Buy

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4) Kodak PIXPRO FZ43 

Kodak PIXPRO FZ43 Digital Camera

Features:

  • 16.1 MP CCD sensor.
  • 720p HD video shooting @30 fps.
  • Handheld monopod and tabletop tripod.
  • Adjustable ISO.
  • 4x optical zoom feature.

It’s not just about the looks. The Kodak PixPro is a camera that takes away the deal, with its heavy specs and high-value accessories.

You’ll find that this product comes in a bundle with accessories like a monopod and camera case included. The image quality and shooting modes on the Kodak are a plus.

Overview:

Firstly let’s talk about the camera. In terms of image quality, the Kodak PixPro has a resolution of about 16.15 MP. This resolution is the standard for cameras within this price range.

The CCD sensor features a 4x optical zoom. The zoom limit isn’t what we’ve seen on other cameras. But that is accommodated by the adjustable ISO range, from 80 to 1600.

This bundle includes a 16GB SanDisk memory card, along with both a monopod and a tripod.

To maintain the camera lens, the package includes a lens cleaning pen along with LCD protectors. This is the highest value deal, as it comes in about the same price as some of the premium cameras on our list.

Pros:

  • ISO can be adjusted.
  • Great for low-light.
  • Works for sunny settings.
  • Best value bundle.

Cons:

  • Low optical zoom range.
  • Pictures lose quality when zoomed.

Best Place to Buy

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5) Canon PowerShot SX600 HS 16MP 

Canon PowerShot SX600 HS 16MP Digital Camera

Features:

  • 16.0 MP CMOS sensor.
  • DIGIC 4+ image processor.
  • 18x optical zoom.
  • Multiple modes, including Creative Shot.
  • Auto mode selection.

Here’s quite a peculiar one. The Canon PowerShot SX600 is a digital camera that can be remotely controlled through Wi-Fi.

Perhaps this feature is common among the newer models. But given its release date and the low budget, this feature is a neat little addition.

Overview:

The Canon PowerShot has a 16.0 MP resolution and features a High sensitivity CMOS sensor. This is a huge upgrade from the CCD sensor used in some older cameras.

This camera also uses the DIGIC 4+ processor, which means it’s specially designed for low-light performance.

Canon PowerShot camera has an 18x optical zoom, which makes it perfect for landscapes and close-ups. The Creative Shot mode combines composition and color values to generate artistic filters.

What sets the camera aside is that this is a Wi-Fi enabled camera, which can be remotely controlled by your phone. This comes in handy when you have to upload and share photos across platforms.

The smart sensor in this camera selects the correct camera settings according to your surroundings.

Pros:

  • Best for low-light.
  • Features filters and presets.
  • Easy to upload and share photos.
  • Steady shots at every move.
  • Affordable and high value.

Cons:

  • No USB connector cable included.
  • Motion blur is frequent.

Best Place to Buy

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6) Fujifilm Instax 300 Camera 

Fujifilm Instax Wide 300 Instant Film Camera

Features:

  • 95 mm extending f14 lens.
  • Focal ranges: 0.9-3 m, 3m to infinity.
  • Electronic shutter range: 1/64-1/200 sec.
  • ISO 800 with exposure control.

Are you tired of having to develop films in this digital age? Then you might like the concept of the Fujifilm Instax Wide Camera.

This is an instant film camera, and while it’s not a digital one, we felt that it fits the needs of a digital photographer. It’s light, compact, and has jaw breaking exposure control.

Overview:

Starting off with the image quality, the Instax features an automatic extending lens of 95mm. This lens has two focus zones: from 0.9 to 3m, and from 3m up to infinity.

Moreover, the camera features an optical viewfinder. It can take close-up shots of subjects up to 40 cm away from the camera. And the electronic shutter release is as fast as one-two hundredth of a second.

The Instax is an instant camera, which, much like the Polaroid, produces the image instantly on a film. The picture size is about 62 by 99 millimeters, which is the Fujifilm Instax Wide Film.

With the Fujifilm Instax, you get optimum control over the exposure, with an ISO 800. Sadly, the ISO is not adjustable.

Pros:

  • Highly adjustable.
  • Optimized for cloudy and sunny days.
  • Great for close-up shots.
  • All the functionality of a digital camera.

Cons:

  • Bad low-light performance.
  • ISO is fixed.

Best Place to Buy

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7) Nikon Coolpix L330 Digital Camera 

Nikon Coolpix L330 Digital Camera

Features:

  • Aperture range: f/3.1-f/5.9.
  • Optical zoom up to 26x.
  • Digital zoom up to 4x.
  • Storage media: SD, SDXC, and SDHC cards.
  • Includes batteries and camera strap.

The Nikon Coolpix series has always been a user-favorite. And the Coolpix L330 is no exception. This fully digitized camera is the best choice for landscape photography, as it has a 26x optical zoom.

It’s one of the best for shooting in the day and even at night. We highly recommend the Nikon Coolpix L330 for outdoor photography.

Overview:

First things first, this Nikon beauty is unlike the other Coolpix cameras. That’s because it’s been specially optimized for landscape photography. It has an optical zoom of up to 26x and a digital zoom of up to 4x.

The lack of digital zoom is accounted for by the fact that you can zoom in optically without ruining the quality. However, zooming in digitally runs the chances of losing picture resolution.

The aperture can be tweaked from f/3.1 to f/5.9. This means that you can control how much light you want inside the camera. This makes it amazing for low-light photography, but it may not be the best for that.

Pros:

  • Highly proficient in landscape photography.
  • It comes with a USB cable.
  • Great for low-light photography.
  • Perfect high light rendition.
  • Adjustable aperture.

Cons:

  • Loses resolution when zoomed.
  • Harder to set up and get running.

Best Place to Buy

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8) Cyber-shot Digital Still Camera 

Sony Cyber Shot DSC HX9V

Features:

  • 16.2 MP CMOS sensor.
  • 16x optical zoom.
  • 1080p FHD videos @60 fps.
  • Geo-tagging feature.
  • 3D stills and sweep panorama.

Here’s another Sony digital camera. This Cyber-Shot DSC-HX9V is a major leap from the simpler predecessors.

It features tons of new features like geo-tagging, 1080p videos, and even backlight correction. It’s all in the Sony Cyber-Shot.

Overview:

What sets the Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-HX9V aside is the addition of new features. This includes the geo-tagging feature. It takes note of your location and tags photos accordingly. So you have all the photos taken on an occasion in one place.

Furthermore, the Cyber-Shot also has 1080p FHD videos. This is a huge upgrade from the 720p that others shoot at. And the frame rate is 60 fps.

This Sony camera uses a 16.2 MP CMOS sensor. For those of you who don’t know, this type of sensor is perfect for low-light photography. The camera also features backlight correction to help the learning photographer.

To add to that, the Cyber-Shot also takes 360-degree stills and sweep panoramas. This only adds to the functionality of the Sony Cyber-Shot.

The regulars are still there, such as high-speed autofocus and a beautiful background blur.

Pros:

  • Great for low-light photography.
  • It helps in organizing photos by location.
  • More portrait options.
  • Backlight correction.
  • Higher quality videos and photos.

Cons:

  • Full Auto Mode needs improvement.
  • Flash positioning is not ideal.

Best Place to Buy

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9) Fujifilm Instax Square SQ6 

Fujifilm Instax Square SQ6

Features:

  • Square photo format.
  • Automatic exposure control.
  • Includes 3 color filters.
  • The battery comes with the box.

Fujifilm’s Instax line was one of the best and still stands today as the cheapest option for landscape photography. This Instax Square SQ6 comes jam-packed with features, including a square photo format along with automatic exposure control.

Overall, the Fujifilm Instax is a great pick for the amateur photographer.

Overview:

To start off with, this Instax model features a square 1:1 photo format. This format is the standard in most photo-sharing apps such as Instagram. So you don’t have to worry about uploading it to your page.

Moreover, the camera features an automatic exposure control, so you get your image optimized for the setting. This means that even cloudy and low-light scenes can be rendered quite well.

The Instax is an instant camera that uses a square style film. It includes color filters of various values, including orange, purple, and even green. This adds a retro look to your photos and can enhance the overall image.

Pros:

  • Great for low and high light settings.
  • Vintage/retro Polaroid photos.
  • Most of the accessories come included.
  • Available in a variety of colors.
  • Wide film shots.

Cons:

  • Completely analog. Not a good alternative to digital.

Best Place to Buy

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10) Canon PowerShot SD780IS 12.1 MP 

Canon PowerShot SD780IS 12.1 MP Digital Camera

Features:

  • 12.1 MP stills, 720p HD videos.
  • 3x optical zoom.
  • DIGIC 4 processor for images.
  • Intelligent contrast and red-eye correction.
  • 20 shooting modes.

This digital camera from Canon is a great choice for those on a lower budget. However, that isn’t to say that the PowerShot doesn’t have all the cool features that other cameras do.

Sure, the resolution isn’t all that high, and the optical zoom is hardly acceptable. But we love the Canon PowerShot for the amazing low-light performance and video shooting modes.

Overview

You get a face detection timer along with automatic settings. The camera has over 20 modes and even features contrast and red-eye correction.

Furthermore, this Canon model uses the DIGIC 4 Image Processor, which is widely acclaimed for low-light operation.

The resolution is 12.1 MP, and the optical zoom is about 3x. The zoom is quite disappointing, but the image doesn’t get shaky. The screen is quite small too, approximately 2.5 inches diagonally.

All in all, aside from the low quality, the feature set is still remarkable. And considering that you get all that in a low-budget camera, it’s still worth the shot.

Pros:

  • High-value feature set.
  • Automatically corrects the photo.
  • Suggest the appropriate setting.
  • Face recognition self-timer shot.
  • HD video rendering.

Cons:

  • The resolution is lower than other cameras.
  • Very low-quality optical zoom.

Best Place to Buy

View Product on Amazon

 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What should I know before buying a digital camera?

The one thing you should know before buying a digital camera is the ideal image sensor.

Sensors come in all varieties. The two most common ones are the HAD CCD sensor and the CMOS sensor. Each has its own feature sets and benefits.

Apart from that, you should also look into the types of image processors, as those can impact the image a lot.

What makes a great digital camera?

Each camera has its own way of rendering photos. And depending on your likes and dislikes, the image can appear high quality or low quality. However, if there is one issue that cameras face, especially the lower budget ones, then it’s the shutter speed.

Slower shutter speed means that the slightest shake during image capture can create blurred photos. This can be annoying, especially if you’re low on memory.

What are the different types of digital cameras?

There are four types of digital cameras:

  • Compact
  • Mirrorless
  • Bridge
  • DSLR

Compact cameras have a single fixed lens, and sometimes the image can get out of focus.

Bridge cameras also have a fixed lens but have more features such as ISO and aperture control. DSLRs are perhaps the most expensive cameras.

With a DSLR, you can even change the type and number of lenses. Mirrorless cameras are similar to DSLRs but don’t have all the features.

What photographs are digital cameras best used for?

Each camera is made for a different type of setting. If you’re talking about the image format, that also varies from camera to camera.

The best ones under $100 usually store stills in RAW, TIFF, and JPEG formats, and movies in MOV format. Both formats do not deteriorate picture quality and can be used on various platforms such as YouTube.

Top Pick And Summary:

In the digital age, cameras have certainly changed the way we go about our daily lives. Of the 10 digital cameras we reviewed, the Canon PowerShot SX600 took the lead.

With its high-value features and incredible photo rendition, the Canon PowerShot is certainly the best digital camera.

But that’s not to say that the others aren’t any good. Indeed, every single camera on our list is a unique find. Pick out your favorite, and don’t forget to live in the moment!