Action cameras are really becoming popular these days, you can almost find them anywhere you go. You can see them used by popular vloggers, actors, travelers, and other normal civilians. Luckily, getting a good action camera doesn’t have to be expensive. In fact, you can get a great action camera just below $100 and we’re here to help you find the best one.
10 Best Affordable Action Cameras
Thanks to the widespread popularity of the device, there are now plenty of affordable, high-quality action cameras that you can choose from. If you are just looking for an action camera that is good for home use only, then you don’t really need to have to spend more than $100 for a good camera.
Here is our top 10 list of high-quality action cameras that you can choose from that are just under $100.
1. EKEN H9R 4K Action Camera review
You can now share your story with the world instantly with this EKEN action camera, as it now has a live streaming function. However, this function only works on Apple iOS. The device has a built-in WiFi and HDMI output, the WiFi signal range is 33 feet. You can quickly edit and share your videos as soon as it gets recorded with the EZ iCam app that allows remote control of the action camera. With the camera’s HDMI output, you can preview videos or watch a real-time display on a TV with an HDMI Cable.
The H9R is highly durable and waterproof and can be submerged into water up to 100 feet deep. The waterproof housing of the action camera is designed to withstand different kinds of weather conditions and extreme environments. The cam also has a 2-inch display for a high-quality preview and playback.
The package includes 2 rechargeable batteries, remote control, tripod, and all kinds of mounts. Note: the mounts can be compatible with most action cameras including GoPro.
2. Campark ACT74 4k Action Camera review
With this camera’s 4k recording, you can now capture photos and videos with the best resolution. This action camera has a 2 inch HD screen where you can see all your captured videos and photos, the angle lens provides a 170-degree field of view. This action camera is compatible with both iOS and Android systems, you can control the Campark camera on your phone in real-time. What’s more, you can also instantly send videos and pics to your friends via email, or you could also easily share them on your social media.
The cam is also waterproof for up to 30m deep, which is ideal for people who are into water sports like surfing, swimming, water skiing, snorkeling, and more. The package includes 2 rechargeable batteries, a USB cable, a waterproof case, a bicycle mounting kit, a waterproof case bracket, a helmet mounting kit, and a user manual.
Note: you should only use a class 10 32GB micro SD card, make sure to format the memory card before using. Charge the batteries for at least 2 to 3 hours to capture a 60 to 90-minutes video recording, this will depend on the video’s resolution.
3. YI 8800 Action Camera review
The YI camera is pocket-sized but still achieves similar performance to larger cameras. It is equipped with one of the leading image processors, letting the device capture visually captivating videos at the high resolution of 1080p. With the camera’s ability to stabilize movement and reduce noise and blur, you can now capture videos with a very high-resolution that remains crisp and clear.
The camera also has a Sony 16MP sensor that could take sharp and vivid photos, even in a place with a low-light condition. It has a built-in WiFi and Bluetooth functionality that allows you to control the camera via your phone, for as far as 300ft away. You can control the camera with the camera’s application.
Like the other action cameras on the market, this one is also waterproof and mountable. You can mount it on your bike or helmet to capture extreme activities in hands-free mode, and you can also submerge the camera underwater to capture your best underwater moments.
4. Muson MC2 4k Action Camera review
This action camera from Muson comes with a bunch of additional trinkets, ranging from the regular waterproof casing to different mounts and tethers. The MC2 is a full HD camera, though it can also shoot a 4k video at 25fps. Here are all of the video’s resolutions with their respective framerate:
- 720p at 60 fps
- 1080p at 60 fps
- 2.7k at 30 fps
- 4k at 25 fps
You can capture videos very smoothly, and as the device suggests, it could capture a very high-quality video. As for the photos, you can take 12MP pictures up to its maximum resolution of 4608 x 2592. This is really cool for a camera that has a price range of below $100.
The package includes a waterproof housing for usage under up to 30 meters underwater. The package also includes 2 rechargeable batteries, this is highly convenient since most action cameras can only film for 1 hour due to the small battery size.
5. SOOCOO C30R 4k Action Camera review
Here is a well-constructed camera that comes with a very durable waterproof case. The exterior of the C30R is made of high-quality materials, unlike some cameras that have a cheap plastic feel to them. This action camera will allow for quick and easy capture of videos and photos, which can be really stunning due to the C30R’s great image quality. Thanks to the camera’s high fps, your videos will come out smooth and with a lot less blur and noise in the background of the images.
One of the amazing things about this action camera is its high water resistance rating. You can take it down with you while diving as deep as 94 feet. Another good thing about this action camera is that it can boot up quicker than most other action cameras, which can be useful when you’re trying to both save the battery and capture videos on the fly. The only downside of this camera is the shorter battery charge, though the pack does come with 2 rechargeable batteries. However, if you shoot a video with 4k resolution, the battery could only last for 15 minutes.
6. APEMAN A80 4k Action Camera review
This device is one of Amazon’s top choices. The A80 features the ultra-wide angle of 170 degrees that could capture a much broader view. It has a 4k video resolution option that will make you feel like a professional cameraman. It also has a 2-inch display to let you view and review the images captured with the camera. This action camera is also waterproof and can be submerged up to 40m deep.
Whether you are capturing videos by holding or mounting the A80, the device has the ability to reduce the shakiness with its anti-shake function. With its image stabilization and anti-shaking function, it could make your videos and photos look a lot more smooth and balance out the natural movements present in high-action situations. This is ideal for those who are into extreme and sports.
The package contains a waterproof case, 2 rechargeable batteries, a USB cable, a manual, mounting accessories, and more.
7. Apexcam Pro M80 4k Action Camera review
The Apexcam has an incredible high-quality, cost-effective 4k at 30 fps resolution video and a 20MP image resolution. The lens of the M80 has a wide angle of 170 degrees, and comes with the anti-shaking image stabilization function, for a very smooth and stable high definition video without shakiness and distortion. It also has different multi-function shooting options, such as loop recording, delay video, slow-motion photography, and more.
The cam can be used as a dashcam, but aside from that, since the camera is equipped with a very durable waterproof case, this can be used perfectly while doing water sports activities, like diving, snorkeling, surfing, jet skiing, and more. The cam can be submerged to up to 40m or 131 feet. The device is also equipped with WiFi and a 2.4G remote control. Just download the cam’s application to use this function, it’s applicable for both iOS and Android devices.
The package includes an external mic, 2 rechargeable batteries, a waterproof case, remote button cell, and more.
8. AKASO EK7000 4k Sports Action Camera review
Here is another 4k action camera to provide you with the best high-definition videos and photos. This camera has a wireless wrist controller to let you control the camera hands-free. With the 2.4G wrist camera controller, you can capture the world in a whole new different way. This can be convenient if you got your hands too busy to hold the camera.
Unlike most other action camera’s, the EK7000 has a long battery life. The package includes 2 extra batteries, and each of them could last for as long as 90 minutes of recording. With this camera, you no longer have to worry about your camera’s recording time. The device has a built-in WiFi and HDMI output, with this function you can edit and share your videos in a matter of minutes. The range of the WiFi signal could range to up to 10 meters.
The pack contains a remote control, 2 batteries, a waterproof case, helmet mounts, and more.
9. REMALI Sports Action Camera review
Whether it’s photos or videos, the REMALI action camera could provide you with top of the line quality images. This action camera has the versatility to capture images in a crystal clear 4k resolution. Capture your moments and breathtaking views with the cam’s ultra wide angle of 170 degrees, you can either capture in singles shots or multiple shots.
The package comes with a remote control along with a WiFi app, which is compatible with both Android and iOS devices. The action camera is also waterproof when placed in the provided waterproof case, the camera can be submerged underwater for as deep as 30m.
For an added value, the pack includes a carrying case, 3 rechargeable batteries, 1 dual charger, and a 1.4G remote controller.
10. AKASO Brave 4 Action Camera review
This action camera here is the upgraded version of the AKASO EK7000. The AKASO Brave 4 features 1080p/60 fps, 2k/30 fps, and 4k/24 fps video resolution options and 20MP photo resolution. With these high resolutions, the Brave 4 will allow you to capture incredible images and ultra-high definition videos.
You can adjust the angle view of the camera to 70, 110, 140, and 170 degrees according to your needs. The cam is equipped with an anti-shaking and image stabilization functions, this helps to make your video look much smoother. The camera is also equipped with WiFi connectivity to make editing and sharing videos much easier with an app. The camera can support HDMI, this enables you to view your photos and videos on a TV or computer.
The AKASO Brave 4, like all the other action cameras, is waterproof. With a waterproof case, the camera can be submerged as deep as 30 meters. The pack includes free accessories like a waterproof case, 2 batteries, a remote control wristband, and 19 more useful accessories.
Why Should You Get The Best Action Camera?
If you’re looking for an action camera, you’re probably planning on making a bunch of videos on the move while traveling, going on a bike ride, and in many other situations. But then the question arises – why get an action camera if you could just get a regular one or just use your phone’s camera.
Here are a couple of reasons to consider buying an action camera over other image capture devices.
You can use the camera for capturing photos and videos in many situations. You record and take photos while underwater, hiking, scuba diving, climbing, skydiving, surfing, and many more. Most action cameras are rugged, which means you can still use them while doing extreme outdoor activities.
These cameras can use supportive accessories like waterproof housing, tripod stands, and, more notably, different kinds of mounts that can be placed on helmets, cars, bags, bike, and on other surfaces. These features can be really convenient for taking hands-free videos and photos.
Compact and Portable
Because of their amazing compact design, action cameras won’t take up much space and can be easily placed and carried anywhere you go. There aren’t many “regular” cameras that can compete with action cameras in this field, apart from smartphone cameras, which, in most cases, produce images at a lower resolution than the average action camera.
How to Pick the Best Action Camera Under $100?
It’s easy to look at a camera’s brand name and the number of units sold to make a decision on whether you should buy it or not. However, this method is also likely to end with you buying a sub-optimal product for your needs. This is why separate reviews, technical specs, and included equipment should be carefully compared between different action camera models, as we did today.
With that said, the most important thing about the action camera is its video resolution. The current highest standard resolution available today is 4k, then next comes the 1080p and 720p. To stream a 4k video, you will need a compatible 4k TV or monitor to be able to view it in its full glory or view it at all. If you don’t have a compatible device, then you can stick with the 1080p or 720p resolutions. They are compatible with almost any kinds of TVs and computers.
High Resolution and Framerate
This is one of the most important features of any camera but is potentially even more important with action cameras. If you want a camera that could perfectly re-live your exciting moments, then you should look at the camera’s resolution specs. Here’s a simple visual comparison of the standard video resolutionss used today.The most common options of resolution that you can choose from are HD at 1920 x 1080 pixels or an Ultra HD 4k. The latter provides an almost perfect image by capturing basically all the detail your eye can see in the real world. However, the higher the resolution is, the more space your recorded files will take on your camera’s memory.
Aside from the image quality, you should also pay attention to the camera’s frame rate. This is also necessary when choosing a good camera. Most videos you’ve seen in your life are probably 24-30 frames per second, which will also do fine on your action camera. Doubling that amount to 60fps, however, provides a very lifelike portrait of what you filmed.
When choosing an action camera, you should also look out for some freebies. Most bought cameras come with extra bits that can either be advantageous for you or not. For example, most action cameras come with a waterproof case. This could be really helpful if you want to record some videos or take some pictures while underwater.
Some manufacturers make standardized kits for action cameras, like the kit shown below. It should be noted that there are many camera models that won’t work with this specific gear kit, so make sure that your action camera is compatible with GoPro gear or find a different kit made specifically for your preferred model.
Some cameras also come with a sucker mount, this will help if you want to mount the camera in your car. These added parts are worthwhile, so choose a camera with extra accessories to enhance your video-taking experience, especially if you need the camera for a specific purpose.
In the past years, action cameras are now fitted with many extra features. These features include:
- Image stabilization – this could be really helpful when shooting videos from a moving vehicle as it compensates all the bumps and shakes of your movement in order to make the video smooth.
- Voice control – here is another great feature for those who want to capture videos hands-free or maybe even from a short distance.
- GPS – this feature will automatically tag you captures videos with geographical details, another beneficial feature, especially for travelers.
The anti-shake feature of an action camera is the most popular and will be useful to any user, so at least try to get a camera with this feature.
This is another important thing that you should look out for in an action camera. One of the odds when using an action camera is that you won’t see a power outlet for some time, which means you can’t charge your camera’s batteries anytime you want.
So, you should probably get a camera that has a long battery life. But if you can’t find anything alike, then just consider taking an extra battery with you. This is so that you won’t miss a single moment during your adventures.
Aside from being exposed to water, your camera can also be exposed to places with high or low temperatures. So check if the camera you’re looking at can handle very hot or very cold weather conditions, to further ensure its durability. All cameras on our list come with a waterproof case, which is one of the most important protective measures for action cameras.
Other Things to Consider
Aside from the resolution, another thing that you should look for when buying an action camera is its shape. The box-shaped ones are perfect for chest mountings, while the bullet-shaped ones are perfect to be mounted on a helmet. In any case, if you want a portable action camera, then choose a lighter one.
The most widely recognized action camera is the GoPro together with its adaptation to accessories, unmatched qualities, durability, and advanced technological specifications. However, there are also a lot of action cameras below $100 that have proven to be of high quality as well. They may be much cheaper than the popular GoPro cameras while also managing to match the GoPro’s qualities.
That is why there are still a lot of people that go for the cheaper, but still high-quality devices. Not only could they save money, they could also get what they wanted for a very affordable price. We hope that our article helped you find the best cheap action camera for your needs.