Like most people say, life is full of memories. But sometimes, memories fail. Therefore, it is important to put these memories into tangibles that cannot be easily erased by time. You need to take a picture of each precious moment and beautiful places to which you’ve been.

In taking pictures (as well as videos), a camera is used. Everyone knows the function of a camera and that they come in different forms, from the simplest phone cameras to the most advanced, sophisticated DSLR cameras.

Defining what a camera is

A camera is an optical instrument used for capturing or recording images that can be stored inside or transmitted to another location, or both. How a camera function is similar to the workings of the eye.

Older cameras with film (photographic films or plates) capture light onto these films, while newer models of cameras use an electronic image sensor, and the resulting photograph can be transferred or stored on a memory card.

History of the camera

The first camera invented was called the “camera obscura” which means “dark room” in Latin.

It works when an image is projected against a wall or screen through a small hole in this screen; an inverted image is created on the opposite surface. This principle was first described by Mozi, a Han Chinese philosopher from ca. 470 to ca. 391 BC.

In 17th century, portable camera obscura devices were placed in boxes with tent coverings, and used as aids in drawing. Through the years, inventions came about to improve cameras and photographs.

In the 2000s, digital cameras gradually became the major type of cameras across all platforms—movies, television, and consumers.

What are the types of cameras?

There are hundreds of cameras that can be found in stores today. Each of them can be categorized into several types of cameras—compact point-and -hoot, mirrorless, and DLSR. They all have unique features and capabilities.

The DLSR cameras are the most sophisticated among the types of cameras. They have interchangeable lenses, are large in size, and capture images with the highest resolutions and most accurate details.

They are best used for special occasions and by professional photographers. DSLR cameras have the most advanced features making them also the most expensive cameras.

Mirrorless cameras have almost the same features as the DLSR, but in a more compact structure. They also have interchangeable lenses and are more lightweight than DLSR cameras. They are usually used by amateur photographers.

The compact point-and-shoot cameras are the smallest and lightest cameras solely dedicated to photography. They have a permanently attached lens which can be zoomed in or out, and able to retract into the camera to keep the camera compact.

Travel camera buying guidelines

When looking for a travel camera, you should keep in mind several important things. There are a lot of features and capabilities of each camera which you might think you need. So you end up choosing the most sophisticated type which costs the most.

There is no single feature that make a camera the best one. The best way to choose a travel camera is to list your preferences and photography needs.

Do you want your photos to have high-quality resolution? Do you want them to be able to be conveniently transferred to your mobile device? Do you have a limited budget? How compact a camera do you want?

Among the many features that you should check in a travel camera, here are the most important.

Cost

One major thing to consider is the cost. Most travel cameras comes with features and capabilities that are almost similar to DSLRs. Therefore, they cost almost the same, and are more expensive that a compact point-and-shoot camera.

Weight

Usually, travel cameras weigh up to 8 pounds. They should be light enough so they can be easily carried along on a trip, and not take up much of your energy.

Size

During travel, the sizes of the things you bring matter. When it comes to a travel camera, choose the most compact one that will not take so much space in your luggage. It should be compact without compromising the other features that you need.

Resolution

Travel cameras capture images that have resolutions which are almost similar to DSLRs. This should be the major thing that should not be compromised. You would not want to capture the best scenes in pixelated, blurred images.

Top 5 Best Travel Cameras

Among the huge selection of cameras today, choosing the best camera for your travels can be difficult. So we have listed the top 5 best travel cameras on the market. They are chosen based on the number of ratings and positive online reviews.

Canon PowerShot G9 X Digital Camera

Known for high quality cameras, Canon has again come up with best-selling camera—the Canon PowerShot G9 X Digital Camera. It is fully equipped with features that produce high-resolution images.

Features

  • Equipped with high sensitivity CMOS sensor combined with DIGIC 6 Image Processor and ISO 12800. These and more features contribute to the high resolution images of up to 20.2 megapixels
  • A pocket sized camera that weighs 7.37 ounces
  • Makes the target subjects steady and quickly captures them with Canon’s innovative Intelligent IS
  • Can capture the night sky with its Star Mode feature
  • Comes in different capture modes that suits in different conditions—the Powered IS, Dynamic IS, Macro (Hybrid IS), and Active Tripod IS
  • The captured images can be transferred and viewed in HDTVs through the camera’s HDMI output, and in other mobile devices
  • Has an LCD touch panel to make control easy

Pros

  • The Sony Cyber Shot DSC-RX100 Digital Still Camera has a compact, lightweight construction that make travel photography convenient and easy. But with this build, it is still loaded with features needed for capturing high-quality images
  • Built with Canon’s unique technologies to capture subjects in different conditions such as low light and night time
  • It can easily be controlled and the settings can be adjusted because of its LCD touch panel. You do not have to press so many buttons to have the settings you need
  • The captured images can be easily transferred to HD TVs and mobile devices.

Cons

  • Some users complain about the lack of a one-touch delete button and adjustable flash
  • It has a built-in wireless technology but does not work with Marshmallow Android on Nexus 6p

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ1000 Camera

If you are looking for a travel camera that comes with a retractable lens, this Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ1000 Camera is a good choice. A retractable lens helps you capture high resolution images without having the added bulk and weight.

Features

  • Ultra-fast Lumix DFD focusing technology that captures the subject and defocuses on the other details. Combined with a fast shutter speed, it effectively and quickly captures moving images
  • It has a 250-400 mm Leica DC lens that can be zoomed in/out up to 16 times
  • Captures images with 21.2 MP and videos with 4k QFHD 30p with hybrid 8 MP post capture
  • Built with 3” LCD where you can view your captured images and videos
  • Has an integrated wireless capability to transfer captured images and videos to mobile devices
  • The package comes with de-A79B battery charger, rechargeable lithium ion battery, lens cap, lens hood, and more
  • Weighs 1.83 pounds and has dimensions of 3.9” x 16” x 5.39”

Pros

  • Many users praise the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ1000 Camera’s convenience. It helps capture high-quality images without too much pressing of buttons
  • The images can be easily transferred through its integrated Wi-Fi
  • Even if the subject is moving, the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ1000 Camera can capture it without any blur. It also defocuses the background to make the subject the focus of attention
  • It is lightweight and easy to carry
  • Complete package comes with rechargeable batteries, charger, lens cap, and more
  • It provides a comfortable grip to make it secure in your hands, even when you are on a trip
  • The layout is easy to understand making the whole interface of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ1000 Camera easy to use.

Cons

The images captured in low light may not be of good quality.

Ricoh GR II Digital Camera

The Ricoh GR II Digital Camera is a 4.5-star rated travel camera at more affordable price. It provides high-quality images without too much weight and size.

Features

  • Unique features of Ricoh GR II Digital Camera that other travel cameras do not have are the advanced GR Engine V imaging system and anti-aliasing design. It captures images with reduced noise, even in highly sensitive shooting
  • Built with the auto-focus system
  • Has a wide-angle lens and 16 megapixel image sensor
  • Records videos in 1080p resolution and h.264 compression at 30 fps
  • Can instantly process raw data
  • Has built-in wireless capability to connect with other mobile devices
  • Weighs 0.6 pounds and measures 4.6” by 2.5” by 1.4”

Pros

  • Many users are satisfied with the features and capabilities of Ricoh GR II Digital Camera.
  • It is lightweight and can easily fit into your luggage
  • Even when the subject is moving, the Ricoh GR II Digital Camera can capture it without blur because of its unique imaging system and anti-aliasing design
  • The Ricoh GR II Digital Camera improves your photography skills without having to adjust the settings too much
  • It has a pretty good macro function to capture subjects in every detail
  • The control panel is easy to learn and adjust, even with only one hand
  • The captured images can be conveniently transferred to other devices without connecting cables, or setting up software

Cons

  • The Ricoh GR II Digital Camera might be better if it didn’t have a fixed focal length
  • Users complain about the lack of components that come with the package

Sony MP Exmor CMOS Sensor Digital Camera

Another travel camera that can be a good alternative is the Sony MP Exmor CMOS Sensor Digital Camera. It has great features that might fall within your preferences.

Features

  • Built with Exmor CMOS Sensor and 8-100mm equivalent F/1.8-4.9 lens with ISO 125 – 6400 expandable to 80, 100, and 25,600
  • Lens are expandable up to 3.6 times
  • Sony MP Exmor CMOS Sensor Digital Camera has manual and dual record controls
  • Captures images with 20.2 MP resolution and videos with 1080p resolution
  • Has a 3” LCD display with 1.2M dots which can show moving images with a size 640 x 480 30 fps
  • Has an auto focus capability to capture moving subjects in an instant
  • Weights 213 grams and measures 101.6 mm x 58.1 mm x 35.9 mm
  • Has exceptional features such as rear-control dial, steady shot image stabilization, adjustable front ring, and more
  • Captures up to 330 images in one battery cycle
  • Package comes with complete components

Pros

  • The Sony MP Exmor CMOS Sensor Digital Camera is an easy-to-use travel camera that can be manually adjusted to your photography needs
  • It captures sharp images with high resolution as well as videos in 1080p quality
  • It comes with a lens that can be zoomed to give the subject more details. The lens has a wide range of ISO too for more high-quality captures
  • It is built with an aluminum body to make it more durable and give it sophisticated look
  • It comes in complete package making it a cost effective travel camera

Cons

  • One drawback of the Sony MP Exmor CMOS Sensor Digital Camera is it does not have a dedicated button for flash
  • The lens zooms in and out slowly

Sony Cyber Shot DSC-RX100 Digital Still Camera

Coming from the world’s trusted technology company, the Sony Cyber Shot DSC-RX100 Digital Still Camera is equipped with features that are liked by many photographers and travel enthusiasts. Here are some of its features, pros, and cons.

Features

  • Has a hybrid autofocus system combined with focal plane face detection AF and contrast detection AF
  • Captures images with 8 megapixel resolution
  • The moving images or video is full HD can be retracted to 2mp during playback
  • Built with stacked-back illuminated Exmor RS image sensor with DRAM chip for convenient conversion from analog to digital format
  • Shutter speed is so fast—up to 1/32000 of a second
  • Has an XGA OLED Tru Finder electronic viewfinder
  • Has a multi angle LCD display that allows for “selfie” shots
  • Comes with White Magic technology that adjusts in bright daylight

Pros

  • Sony Cyber Shot DSC-RX100 Digital Still Camera has a very fast shutter speed to capture moving images in one click. In fact, it has one of the world’s fastest shutter speed today
  • Can be easily packed in your luggage and is lightweight too
  • It is capable of taking “selfie” shots because of its multi-angle LCD display
  • Even if you view your captures on bright daylight, the LCD brightness adjusts to it so you still have a good preview of your images
  • The camera locks focus quickly to capture consistent images in high-quality resolution

Cons

  • Some users complain about the poor grip of the Sony Cyber Shot DSC-RX100 Digital Still Camera. Its body is shiny and makes you feel that it can slip anytime from your hands
  • It is not a touchscreen travel camera which ends up needing to press more buttons before it adjusts to your desired settings

Summary

Having a travel camera during your trip will capture the beautiful scenery, unique meals, and touching, fun moments with your loved ones. It has become one of the most important things that you should not leave behind when packing for a trip.

Companies over the years understood the importance of capturing images in high-quality resolution, so they have created different types of cameras such as DSLR cameras, mirrorless cameras, compact point-and-shoot cameras, to suit everyone’s needs and preferences. But if you are going on a trip, the compact, lightweight kind of camera is recommended.

Among the wide variety of cameras today, the abovementioned ones are the best travel cameras. They are created by top companies trusted by many people around the world.

They come in different compact sizes and are lightweight, making them easy to carry. They will also not consume much space in your luggage.

With these top five best travel cameras and a checklist of your own preferences, have you identified your favorite travel camera?