Every person wants to get the best bang for their buck, especially with culture-shifting products like the GoPro Hero5 on the market. GoPro's cameras have revolutionized industry standards for smaller action cameras. This innovation comes with a hefty price tag. Luckily, we found the 5 best GoPro alternative options that are budget-friendly.
When searching for an action camera, it's tempting to jump on the bandwagon. Take a step back and decide what qualities are most important to you. Is it affordability? Do you want 4K resolution? How about the battery life? Each action camera alternative will prevail in a different way, but at the core, you want a stable, high-resolution camera that's simple to use. We all want to improve our craft, and having the proper tools to do so plays a major role in that.
Everyone has different technical needs depending on the adventure. Sailing through the ocean might require a lot more stabilization of your camera than taking a safari tour. Referring to this list will be most helpful if you have an itinerary for your vacation or planned adventure. Choose an action camera that caters to your needs. What's important to you may be extraneous to another photographer.
In comparison to a regular camera, which may require different lenses and function changes to get the shot you want, an action camera allows you to capture a broad field of view without all the hassle. These cameras are made to be simple and portable, and some are even WiFi-enabled, making device uploads a breeze. If you're a surfer or speedboat enthusiast, many action cameras come with waterproof casing.
When assessing the attributes that differentiate one camera from the next, consider what you'll mainly be using this for. Are you skiing down mountains? Jumping off a cliff at an exotic island? Do you plan to allow your kids to film with it? While action cameras generally take the adrenaline junkie into consideration, there are also options for younger or beginner photographers.
No one really reads the instruction manual nowadays, but doing so can help you get the maximum utility out of your camera. If you're not a fan of perusing through fine-printed booklets, you can opt for watching a YouTube tutorial or product review of your camera. Knowing your camera's strengths and weaknesses will allow you to capture quality video that you'll be proud of down the line. Experimenting with your camera prior to your vacation is also a great way to become familiar with its capabilities. Be sure to charge your batteries and insert your memory cards beforehand, so you're not stuck with a functionless action camera the day of your exciting adventure... especially if you're jumping off that cliff in Costa Rica.
Many people question whether the best GoPro alternative can really match up with the best-selling brand. Can a $40 action camera really match up with a high-end GoPro? Consumers have put these less popular options to the test, and been pleasantly surprised. For less than $50, you can find a device that will capture full 1080 HD videos at 30fps, include a rechargeable battery, be waterproof up to nearly 200 feet, and have WiFi built into the camera! If you're willing to do away with the trendiness of excellent branding, you can get the job done for 1/10th of the price!
Despite their small, portable sizes, action cameras do require a level of attention when mounting the product to a moving surfboard or water ski, etc. Be sure to have a properly charged battery, or else your camera will be useless for completing the one job it had. Other than a few basic logistics, your action camera should be pretty straightforward to use. Prior to purchasing your action camera, it is recommended that you spend time looking at the differences between any alternative action cameras on the market. Are they all the same? Is one worth the extra $10?
The internet is flooded with tech articles and magazines bombarding readers with options upon options. Having too many options can be quite overwhelming, so we've narrowed it down to just a handful of 5 cameras.
Taking the lead as an online best seller, the FITFORT 4K Action Camera provides HD quality and 12MP Image Resolution, 2 Inch LCD Screen, Need more options? Consider purchasing one of the 19 accessories kits that accompany it.
Every technical purchase comes with the possibility of malfunctioning, it appears that customers seemed most disappointed by misleading advertising of the product. You must make sure that this camera is working before the day you use it so you don't lose your mind the day of. Not being able to record once-in-a-lifetime vacations can be infuriating, and it is just not worth the risk.
Created with a Sony sensor, this camera can record photos at 16M. Also included is a 170 degree lens, which means you won't miss any details in the background. This may be a great option for those seeking sharpness in photos and/or videos, ideal for swimming and surfing.
While the product is advertised to be of the utmost quality in regards to video quality, the audio quality may not be as reliable. Some users mentioned poor or average sound quality. Take this into consideration if you are going to a festival, show or want to hear the subjects in your video speaking. The human memory isn't the most reliable, so having quality audio recordings is important.
Very similar to the previous Campark option, this waterproof camera allows you to take high-resolution footage in wet situations. The price tag for the Crosstour Underwater Action Camera also happens to be much cheaper than the former alternative. How much of a difference is there?
Though a price cut from the second product on this list sounds appealing, you may be losing out on an important capability. Most people record special moments with the intention of sharing them, but this camera does not streamline that process. Some users claim the quality is not up to par and that the battery is not reliable. This is my least favorite options because any chance of the camera malfunctioning is a turn off. Add to that the longer sharing process, and I personally find this camera untrustworthy.
This camera comes with several of the features offered by the previous three action cameras listed here. The 30 meter (approximately 98 feet) waterproof feature and 170 degree Wide Angle appear to be setting a precedent in these alternative action cameras. Is there anything that makes this camera stand out from the bunch?
Purchasing a cheaper alternative to any digital product always comes with its drawbacks. You must be sacrificing something, right? It appears one user had trouble inserting a 64GB memory card, as stated on the box under specifications. While this may be a one off scenario, take it into consideration.
Our final alternative is the Buiejdog Waterproof Action Camera and specifications wise, it's quite similar to the other cameras on this list. Having options never hurt, right? Most users seem pretty satisfied with their purchase and would recommend it to a friend.
Though the majority of customers appear to have given this action camera a 5 star rating, for the few unhappy customers, a common theme appeared to be misleading specifications. There are only three poor reviews, but they mainly complain about the photo quality not being nearly as nice as suggested by the box. Sacrificing on photo quality is certainly a risk, but this camera seems accessible and user friendly.
Out of all the options mentioned above, it appears that one really stands out from the bunch and that is the Campark ACT74 4K WiFi Waterproof Action Camera 16MP. In comparison to the cheaper alternatives that are nearly 20 dollars less, the easy sharing capability seems to be worth the additional $20. If you don't care to share your images publicly, you still have the option of managing your camera roll with ease. The Campark ACT74 covers all the major specifications from being waterproof and high-resolution to being WiFi-enabled.
What technical features do you look at when deciding if a camera is right for you? The search for gear can be intimidating to a beginner, but photography is a hobby every person should be able to enjoy. Action cameras tend to be simpler to use than modern day DSLR cameras with zoom lenses and different f-stops. Not everyone has time to take a photography course just to figure out how to take nice vacation pictures. An action camera is meant to make your life easier, so you can enjoy yourself. If you're looking to brag about zip-lining in South America or snorkeling in the Maldives, this camera appears to be the best GoPro alternative, for a quarter of the price.
Hey there, my name is Matan, and I am the creator and editor of this site. I have been photographing for the past 14 years and my mission is to democratize this misunderstood art of taking and processing photographs I love.