5 Best Budget Compact Camera – Reviews

Are you looking to buy the Best Budget Compact Camera for your teen? Or perhaps you want a travel companion to make a particular adventure memorable, but can’t afford to buy some of the expensive compact cameras available in the market. In either case, we have your back. In the following paragraphs, we will be going through short reviews of the best budget compact camera available in the market today. These cameras cost less than 150 USD but still manage to take decent pictures. Continue reading to find out which cameras best fit the bill.

Sony DSC-W800 – Best Budget Compact Camera

Sony DSC-w800-compact-budget-camera.

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Pros & Cons

  • very compact
  • 20 MP camera
  • Low price
  • You have to buy an SD card

Sony is one company that has consistently made cameras with great features and picture quality. It is also considered to be an expensive brand. Not this time, though. The DSC-W800 is our top pick for an overall best budget compact camera. Its pictures are of decent quality. The camera itself is quite small, measuring around 2.1 x 2 x 0.9 inches and weighing just 3.5 ounces.

As soon as you turn it on, the lens telescopes out and offers you a 5x optical zoom to capture photos. Images captured are of 20 megapixels that you can store on the microSD card. The camera doesn’t come with its SD card, though, so you will have to find one from the market. The 2.7 inch LCD screen is decent enough but kind of hard to see in the direct sunlight.

The image quality is excellent. The colors are bold and quite detailed in direct sunlight. On the other hand, the image quality drops when you take photos in the shadow or at nighttime. The indoor shots are quite grainy and dull. 

Even then, considering the price, this is a great bargain. If you are looking for a pocket-sized camera that is a little step above your Smartphone camera than Sony DSC-W800 is the best option available in the market.

Canon PowerShot Elph 190 IS – Best Budget Compact Camera

Canon PowerShot Elph 190 IS compact budget camera

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Pros & Cons

  • 10x zoom
  • WiFi support
  • Slippery plastic casing

This compact camera offers an impressive 10x zoom, from a 24mm angle to 240mm telephotos. The zoom control has a shape like a ring around the shutter, so framing shots is a lot easier without even moving your hand. What’s more, the camera also has Wi-Fi support. You can send pictures instantly to your smartphone, Twitter, Facebook, or even to cloud services like Google Drive. It’s quite a handy way to back up your memories without having to connect to the laptop.

The 2.7-inch screen is full enough, and the images are crisp but a bit difficult to see in the direct sunlight. Moreover, the plastic casing is so smooth that it becomes rather slippery and challenging to hold. We also noticed that the image stabilization does not work as good on longer shots as it does in more fuller settings.

The 720p max images and videos are superb for a compact camera of this price range. It perfectly captures the finer details in bright, vivid colors. All in all, Canon PowerShot Elph 190 IS is an excellent option if you are looking for those longer zoom shots. Just be careful of the slippery casing, though. 


Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS30 – Best Budget Compact Camera

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS30 budget camera

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Pros & Cons

  • sturdy durable built
  • shock-resistant
  • water resistant
  • dull colors

Are you going on an adventure? Hiking perhaps? the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS30 most suitable for outdoor adventures. It is sturdy as a little tank. It can handle and is waterproof up to 26 feet of water. Moreover, you can drop it from 5 feet on a hard surface, and you won’t even see a scratch on its cover. Panasonic claims that using Lumix DMC; you can keep shooting even in the severe cold as low as 14 degrees F. Additionally, with specifications like that, it can certainly hold its own during the hardcore hiking, skiing, and ice-skating activities. 

As you would expect, the screen isn’t that great and eye-catching. It is somewhat blocky and pales in color when compared with other compact cameras in this list. 

It shoots 16 MP pictures and has a 4x optical zoom, decent enough for group shots. The picture quality is reasonably satisfactory, not excellent. In low light, the colors become rather noisy and grainy. Otherwise, the colors look quite decent. Still, It is a tolerable compromise because this little tank can surely survive your adventures without breaking your bank. 

Kodak PixPro FZ53 – Best Budget Compact Camera

Kodak PixPro FZ53

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Pros & Cons

  • multiple features
  • 720p video resolution
  • multiple scene modes
  • Zoomed in shots deteriorate around the edges

Kodak’s well priced compact camera has a variety of features like the 16MP sensor, 5x zoom, and 720p video resolution. The 2.7 inch LCD isn’t very bright but good enough to take pictures outdoors with a shading hand. Our only complaint is that in low light, the preview mode is very slow.

The range of shooting modes it provides is excellent, including a burst mode, several scene modes, and time-lapse mode that can take pictures at random intervals. The manual mode adds exposure compensation. The manual way isn’t as powerful as some high-end cameras, but it does allow some control over the picture.

The pictures are clean, colorful, and have good detail. The macro shots are great to look at. While trying to zoom in on the longer shots, we did notice the picture quality deteriorate somewhat. Especially the edges got fuzzy and soft.   

Polaroid Snap – Best Budget Compact Camera

Polaroid snap instant camera

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Pros & Cons

  • instant polaroid snaps
  • 10 MP pictures
  • No LCD
  • Can’t zoom

The Polaroid snap is all about instant snaps and instant satisfaction. It comes with a built-in printer. After a shot is taken, a copy snaps out of it in about a minute. The instant camera uses a pack of 30 pieces of photo paper. The photo paper is readily available from the market in different colors and costs about $15 a pack. Thus, this is an excellent camera for scrapbooking memories or even as a pass-around between friends at a party.

Other than printing, it is a basic camera. It has a fixed focus, so you can’t zoom. Moreover, it doesn’t even have an LCD screen to view the pictures that you have taken. The 10 MP pictures can be stored on a micro SD card and transferred to your laptop with the help of USB cable. The USB cable comes with the package.

There are only a few buttons on the camera. You get a shutter button, print button, a 10-second delay shutter button, and a mode button. Additionally, the mode button lets you toggle between standard color, a black and white mode, and vivid color mode. The pictures can be framed using the pop up optical viewfinder.  

The image quality is decent, with an acceptable level of detail. However, the colors are somewhat dull. Here’s hoping the next upgraded model has better colors. All in all, if you want a decent quality budget instant camera, then Polaroid snap is your best bet.


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