Ideas for an Affordable Camera

Ace Whitty

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I've been looking into possibly getting a new camera besides using my cell phone camera. The phone will do great for vlogs, but I would like to improve on the video and audio quality on my segments and challenge content. Some videos turn out great and some are very grainy with the phone. I've looked up some videos on YouTube for suggestions but they are all suggesting cameras almost $700-1,000! Apparently, bad idea lol.

If anyone can help me out, I have two questions:

Does anyone know any good quality cameras with good audio for videos? Looking to spend no more than $400 (USD).

Also, does anyone know where I could look for a good used camera? I've looked on Amazon and unless i've been looking in the wrong area, they're over my budget.

Thanks in advance.
 

The NotARubicon!

NotARubicon Productions
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We did almost all of our early videos using 100% iphones and we still use an iphone for about 25% - 50% of most videos - The new iphones have great image quality and VERY good audio - even better if you plug in a mic.. The best part is that if you switch your service to any of the big carriers (ATT, Sprint, Verizon) you can usually get one for FREE ...

As for looking for good used cameras, check Craigslist - I've seen a lot of good deals there but you have to be careful/check/test before buying.. If you have a local camera shop, they may also sell used/returns/refurbs.
 

Vedstedsen

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For sound get a Lavilier for clip on or a Takstar if you want a shotgun mic.
Takstar (or so ive heard), matches Rode/Røde in terms of soundquality for a fraction of the price. Make sure that whatever camera you buy can support an external mic.

Within your price range you probably won't go wrong with either of these:
Nikon D3300/3400
Sony a5100, possibly slight over budget.
Canon T5/T6

Even if you can get close or better quality from new phones, a cheap DSLR/Mirrorless/M43 can make you comfortable with these systems and if you ever plan on making a jump to a more expensive option, you can get get straight at it as you'll have some base understanding on how to get quality out of the camera. Or you can pick up some lenses as you go, that you can bring to a new future camera should you stick to a specific brand.

GoPro with external power recording (phone+mic).
 
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I use the Nikon D5300. The camera is great but costs $500. I recommend buying a used Canon EOS-M (original) off ebay. These usually are $100-$200 and have a decent sensor. When you do get it, be sure to install magic lantern on the camera. Look it up on youtube to learn how to install it. Magic lantern allows you to have advanced features that usually are only on the more expensive cameras (zebraing for exposure and focus, etc.). The best thing about magic lantern though is that you can shoot in raw. The low price but amazing capability allows you to invest the other $200 in audio, lighting, etc. I DO NOT RECOMMEND THIS CAMERA if you don't want to install magic lantern. Another good camera is the Sony RX100 II. The RX100 camera series is great for vloggers and also great for all other content. The RX100 costs $339 so you can afford a rode Video Micro for amazing audio. You can buy the RX100 at adorama cameras. I can't post the link but I'm sure you can find it.