Best Camera for YouTube (Detailed Review)
Selection of the best camera for YouTube depends on the minimum video quality and other specifications according to the social media recommendations. The video frame rate, audio bit rate, aspect ratio, Chroma sub-sampling, resolution, file format, footage type, and the codec quality are some of the parameters you need to consider.
YouTube Recommended Minimum Specifications
- Frame Rate: The standard frame rate for the 4K (2160P) and 2K (1440P) types is between 24FPS-30FPS. For the high frame type, it is between 48FPS-60FPS.
- Aspect Ratio: The aspect ratio for HD video (1920X1080 or 1280X720) is 16:9. For the SD video (640X480 or 854X480) the aspect ratio is 4:3.
- Chroma Sub-Sampling: The Chroma sub-sampling value is 4:2:0.
- Resolution: The recommended resolution range is between 360P and 2160P (and above, if available).
- File Format: Some of the file formats recommended for YouTube -MP4, AVI, WMV, and MOV. The media also accepts other latest formats.
- Footage Type: The commonly recommended footage type is interlaced and progressive.
- Codec Bit Rate: The recommended Codec bit rate for the HDR upload standard frame rate is 28MBPS-56MBPS. For the high frame rate it is between 66MBPS -85MBPS. Any higher values are also accepted.
Here, I have listed four of the video cameras that I recommend for you. Their design and functionality features are compatible to the minimum YouTube requirements and go beyond them. I recommend you to read through the details of technical specifications and functional features, compare and choose the one which is just right for you.
Canon Powershot G7X – Premium Short Clip Movie Camera
Canon Powershot G7X – YouTube Compatibility
The Frame rate is 1920 x 1080 at 60FPS, with an aspect ratio of 16:9 and Codec bit rate of 50MBPS. It has a Chroma sub-sampling value of 4:2:0. The camera supports interlaced and progressive footage types. So, the camera meets the basic recommendations of YouTube Video quality.
Canon Powershot G7X – Specifications and Functions
- Recording Format: The Canon Powershot G7X supports I-Frame and Star-Time-Lapse ((1920X1080), Digest (1280X720), Miniature (640X480) and other types of video shooting. The camera has the best optimized performance, as it allows you to keep the recoding in native recorded format. Hence it is simpler and faster to edit the recording with high-end software.
- Focus Mode: For the HDR video shooting, the camera supports TV mode for the multiple lighting conditions. You can set the shutter speed at the most optimum value and lock the setting. The AV mode shooting, you can set the camera into auto-mode and the system takes care of the settings automatically. The Hybrid auto mode is recommended for making of short movies and digest-type of recording. The inbuilt motorized drive and twin focus lens adjustments (manual and automatic) gives you a minimum focus distance of 2”.
- Depth of Field: The sharpness of the shooting objects at the nearest and farthest distances determines the depth of field. The f/1.8-2.8 lens aperture of the Canon camera allows you to shoot videos with optimum depth of field under multiple lighting conditions. The 4.2X Zoom Canon lens allows you to capture best quality shots between the focal lengths of 8.8mm and 36.8mm. The depth of coverage shows perfectly when you shoot the objects in the shadowed and dark areas. You can get complete object coverage with no distortions and blurriness.
- Touch Panel: The sensitive LCD touch panel allows you to select sharp focus points accurately, while dynamically changing the Focus Mode. The best option is you can change the mode at any time during the shooting. The inbuilt software like the camera-window, browser, and the utilities give you vast options to connect the camera with I-7 compatible computers for the video editing. The tilting nature of the panel allows you to shoot from multiple angles and heights.
- Battery Quality: The NB-13L battery pack specifications are 3.7V-1600mAh-5.92Wh with rechargeable feature.
The Canon Powershot G7X is stated to be ideal for beginners and intermediate level VLOGGERS for YouTube video shooting (short clips and digest movies)
PANASONIC LUMIX DMC-GH4 Camera –Cinema and FHD Shooting
PANASONIC LUMIX DMC-GH4 4K – YouTube Compatibility
The PANASONIC LUMIX DMC-GH4 has a 4K based frame rate which varies between 15FPS and 96FPS (3840×2160). The aspect ratio varies between 1:1, 3:2, 4:3 and 16:9. The codec bit rate of 100MBPS. The Chroma sub-sampling value is 4:2:0. The predominant footage type is progressive. So, the camera meets the basic recommendations of YouTube Video quality.
PANASONIC LUMIX DMC-GH4 4K – Specifications and Functions
- Recording Format: The standard recoding formats for the video shooting are MP4, MOV, and AVCHD with support for Dolby-Digital AAC-2CH and LPCM audio format and Full HD videos). The continuous recording time is 220+ minutes. It supports raw and raw + fine/standard quality recording which can be edited with the help of custom-made software. The noise level is highly reduced when the pixels are combined to produce full HD video. You can record relatively sharper footage at variable focus distance and focal lengths.
- Functional Mode: The camera supports advanced shooting and Focus Modes that allow you to expand the single clip of video into multiple files. Hence, you can extend the shooting time considerably and keep the recording quality at the highest level. You need to make certain specific changes to the configuration for getting the best quality videos. The most favored shooting Modes are HD, Cinema, and UHD. The camera has many physical and digital controls for accessing the functions. You can use them for controlling the frame rate, picture mode, zooming, shutter, video priority and other options. The multiple focus modes of MF, AFC, AFS and AFF has the capacity for face and eye detection at variable depths of field. The aspherical lenses use the advanced optical design features for eliminating the optical aberrations during the shooting under difficult climatic and geographical settings.
- Depth of Field: The camera works with a 4/3” sensor. The depth of field is shallow. The main feature of the camera is you can add multiple lenses (including 3-D lenses) on mountable adapters. The cinema lenses of type PL-Mount have higher depth for focus scales. That means you can shoot under variable lighting conditions (bright daylight to shady evenings and dark nights) on different types of geographic conditions. You can hold the focus constantly at a specific location, while increasing and decreasing the zoom. The manual IRIS system is step-less in nature.
- View Finder: View Finder is the additional feature of the PANASONIC LUMIX DMC-GH4. This tool is controlled within the camera by an eye sensor. It has an in-camera time-lapse shooting option. You can sequence the scenes by composing and framing in real time. It works with high zoom multiple lenses to provide the best depth of field while shooting in low-light conditions. The brightness aspects of the deeply located objects in hidden and dark locations increase significantly with this feature. You can review the video shots even when the LCD camera is facing the reflections from the sunlight. The sensor detects your eye movement and switches between the viewfinder and the LCD screen control.
- Battery Features: The 2V-1860mAh Li-Ion rechargeable battery pack run for long duration to shoot 220+ minutes of video.
The PANASONIC LUMIX DMC-GH4 is a high-end video shooting camera for YouTube VLOGERS and professionals. With a high battery life and 200 cycles of shutter rating and high bit rate of 100MBPS at 4K you can shoot professional RAW and raw + fine formats videos. For the Full HD, the system offers 200BPS bit rate. I would personally recommend the PANASONIC LUMIX DMC-GH4 for the professionals, who would like to shoot and post corporate videos, outdoor shooting and night shooting clips.
Nikon D5600 Digital SLR Camera – Super Vivid and Miniature Shooting
Nikon D5600 Digital SLR Camera – YouTube Compatibility
The Nikon D5600 Digital SLR Camera has a Full HD based frame rate of 60FPS (1920X1080). The aspect ratio is 3:2. The codec bit rate is 24MBPS. The Chroma sub-sampling value is 4:2:0. The predominant footage type is progressive. So, the camera meets the basic recommendations of YouTube Video quality.
Nikon D5600 Digital SLR Camera – Specifications and Functions
- Recording Format: The Video recording format is MOV and the audio format is linear PCM and stereo. Maximum length of recording duration is 30 minutes. Editing of movies is very simple and fast in this format. The video and audio tracks are distinctly different and it allows you to edit them independently. You can also add sub-titles to the video without disturbing the original video format. The recorded videos are primarily stored on a single digital card in the slot.
- Functional Mode: The Nikon D5600 works on 24.2MP-APSC sensor. The focus mode for stationary objects is AF-S and moving objects is AF-F. In the AF-S mode you can set the priority to face. In the AF-F mode the priority is for sub-tracking. There is yet another mode called standard/Normal, which is used most commonly in the video shooting of moving objects. You can also set the focus to manual mode, wherein you can choose the focus mode according to your specific needs. When the camera is working in auto mode, the sensor will automatically adjust the settings based on the external conditions. The 35mm main lens and the 17mm eye-piece lens are compatible with most of the NIKKOR models used in this camera. The time-lapse movie mode can capture stills based on a program built into the system. Then it can combine them into HD/FHD film.
- Viewfinder Specs: The Nikon D5600 Viewfinder has a coverage rate of 95% for vertical and horizontal directions. Using the inbuilt eye sensor, it can shift the focus between the LDC screen and the finder. The magnification factor of 0.82X can track the fast-moving objects accurately. The AF-focus factor is close to 39 points. The point system of 9, 21 39 covers dynamically moving objects whose movements can be predicted (humans, vehicles, machines etc) and unpredicted (wild animals, birds etc).
- Battery Features: The Nikon D5600 uses the EN-EL14a battery pack, which supports 30 minutes of continuous video shooting session. You need to take the battery out of the camera and insert into the manufacturer supplied compatible adaptor for charging.
I would personally recommend the Nikon D5600 Digital SLR Camera for the beginners, who wish to get trained in YouTube video shooting. The professional reach of the camera could be limited to the corporate and industrial plant shooting (informational and commercial). It could also be used to certain extent in the wildlife video shooting projects.
SONY FDR-X3000/White – The 4K Video Shooting Wonder
SONY FDR-X3000/White Camera – YouTube Compatibility
The SONY FDR-X3000/White Camera has a 4k frame rate of 240FPS (3840X2160). The aspect ratio is 16:9. The codec bit rate is 30MBPS-40MBPS. The Chroma sub-sampling value is 4:2:0. The predominant footage type is progressive. So, the camera meets the basic recommendations of YouTube Video quality.
SONY FDR-X3000/White Camera – Specifications and Functions
- Recording Format: The SONY FDR-X3000/White Camera supports recoding format for MP4, MPEG4, ACVC, XAVC, and H.264. The video actual resolution value is 8.2MP. It is the most commonly recommended for professional YouTube videos, which cover corporate, industrial, wildlife, and other shooting applications. The supported audio formats are MP4, MPEG4, XAVC, and AAC-LC. They are also recommended for professional applications. The recordings are stored in SDHC and SDXC compatible card.
- Functional Mode: The functional mode of the camera is enhanced due to the video signal range of HDTV, NTSC-Color, UHDTV and other compatible professional standards. The camera has an inbuilt microphone and speaker for professional documentary and movie shooting applications. The Intelligent system has a ZEISS lens, BIONZ-X processor and RCMOS sensor. Together they enable high-resolution (3840X2160) video shooting in variable lighting and geographical conditions. You can use the remote control (available separately for FDR-X3000R) or the smart phone compatible app to preview the videos from a remote location through Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and NFC.
In spite of not having the color LCD display, the professional level SONY FDR-X3000/White video camera is good enough for the corporate, industrial, wildlife and underwater shooting and record applications. The added advantage point for the camera is its remote and smart phone connectivity and the intelligent processor driven technology. The system is almost equivalent to a mini computer based smart video camera.
According to my personal recommendation, the SONY FDR-X3000/White comes first in for the professional YouTube video shooting application, closely followed by the Nikon D5600 Digital SLR Camera and the PANASONIC LUMIX DMC-GH4 4K. I can recommend the Canon Powershot G7X for the beginners.