If you love adventure, an action camera is a great way to document all of the crazy and daring stuff you enjoy. Even if you’re not on the wild side, the cameras are perfect for travel or other situations where you’re constantly moving and it’s impractical to use a regular camera or your phone.
If you want to get your hands on a quality camera that will take great pictures and videos on the move, an action camera is the way to go. This guide will break down some of the best options under $200 so you can document all of the action and still have enough money to go out and explore.
- The Campark X30 Native Action Camera is an affordable and awesome device. It’s fully capable of capturing high-quality video and images. It’s also durable, waterproof, and built for action.
- If you want an affordable option that comes highly recommended, take a look at the Akaso Brave 4 Action Camera. If you spend a lot of time in nature or love action sports, this is a great way to go.
- The APEMAN A79 4K Action Camera is another solid choice. It’s built for the rigors of action and adventure and still delivers amazing quality videos and photos.
Who Should Get This?
Action cameras are great for anyone who loves the outdoors or action sports. They are also great for users who want a durable device capable of shooting high-quality videos and photos outside in the elements. The cameras on this list meet the needs for all of those situations, and they are also highly affordable. These cameras are great because you don’t need to worry about them getting damaged while you have fun.
If you love to travel, ski, snowboard, or perform outdoor activities, these action cameras are a great way to accomplish that. And, as they are all so affordable, you can easily purchase one before your next big trip or adventure. If you don’t participate in any sort of outdoor activity or action sport, you might not have a need for this type of camera.
Best Action Camera Under $200: What to Consider
One key aspect to look for in an action camera is durability. Chances are, you’re going to be putting the camera under a lot of abuse. You need it to hold up under all of that stress and still be able to capture images and videos. The cameras on this list are all built with strong materials that make them more than capable of handling just about any situation you put them under.
Battery life is another important consideration. Most of the time when you use an action camera, you’re going to be nowhere near an electrical outlet. It’s important that the camera is able to stay powered on all day long without you having to worry if the battery is going to run out while you’re on the go. A long battery life is good to look out for and can improve your ability to capture all of your adventures. Some options even come with dual batteries as well.
If you’re the type of person that loves the water and wants to be able to take videos or pictures beneath the waves, you need a waterproof action camera. All of the ones you’ll find here are waterproof and capable of accompanying you under the sea or in any other situation where you might get wet. Even if you don’t plan on going underwater, it’s still a nice feature for other situations such as the snow or rain.
Something else to keep in mind is any additional accessories that might come with your action camera. These accessories aren’t always essential, but many of them are nice to have and increase the value of the camera. Look for mounts, straps, extra batteries, remote controls, apps, and anything else that helps increase the device’s functionality.
Best Action Camera Under $200: Our Picks
The Campark X30 Native is a top action camera that comes in under $200. This compact and extremely durable model is capable of shooting high-quality 4K video to capture all of your exploits in sports or nature. It features built-in WI-FI, as well as a touchscreen that makes it easy to access everything you record. It also comes with two batteries to ensure you have enough charge to last all day long.
Other features include a waterproof case that will allow you to take this camera under water up to 40 meters without worry and a camera that can capture images up to 20 megapixels. This option also comes with a battery charger, helmet mounting kit, and bicycle mounting kit so you will be ready to go as soon as you unpack it from the box.
- 4K video resolution
- Up to 20MP photos
- 2-inch touch screen for easy operation
- Waterproof up to 40 meters
- Built-in electronic image stabilization
- Comes with mounting hardware
- Slow-motion function is not the greatest
The Akaso Brave 4 is another top action camera. HD videos and amazing photos are possible thanks to a 4K video resolution and a 20MP camera. It also has a built-in gyroscope for automatic stabilization and an adjustable view angle that can change with your adventures. It’s also waterproof up to 100 feet and comes with an HDMI port alongside WI-FI capabilities so you can easily transfer all of your images.
- 4K video resolution
- 20MP camera
- Very affordable
- Waterproof up to 100 feet
- Built-in gyroscope
- Dual batteries with 90-minute life
- Subpar audio quality
The APEMAN A79 is one of the best action cameras you can find for under $200. This option produces excellent 4K video and high-quality photographs. It also has one of the better external microphones you can find on an action camera. It comes with a remote control and provides versatility with your recordings through multiple recording modes. Affordable and versatile, this camera does it all.
- 4K video
- 20MP camera
- Excellent external microphone
- Multiple recording modes
- Waterproof up to 40 meters
- Comes with accessories
- Not the best battery life
Useful Tips & Resources
A lot of people like to mount their action cameras to achieve first-person POV. That can be a cool way to share your adventures with family and friends or simply a way to make your memories last a long time. However, you need to know how to properly mount the camera on a helmet, bike, or any other surface properly so it doesn’t get lost. Here is a good video with some helmet mounting instructions if you want some help.
Action cameras are a lot of fun, and when you can find an affordable option that still delivers high-quality videos and images, you can spend more money pursuing the activities you want to record in the first place. All of the above devices provide excellent value thanks to their affordable price, as well as the numerous features and functions they offer.
What is your favorite use of an action camera? Let us know in the comments below!
Andreas is a freelance tech writer based in California. He works on a Mac in the office and lives with a PC and many old computer electronics at home. While he is not reading or writing, you’ll probably find him playing online games with friends.