From Point-and-Shoot to Professional: Your Guide to Choosing the Perfect Camera
6 April 2023
If you want a photography kit that is both simple and high-quality, the best point-and-shoot cameras are your best bet. Point-and-shoot cameras, in contrast to DSLRs and mirrorless cameras, don’t require you to fiddle with changing lenses because you only get one fixed lens on the camera. However, when compared to a smartphone, they also offer a significant improvement in image quality and handling.
The cameras that, literally, only let you point and shoot were known as “point-and-shoot,” and these cameras were referred to as “point-and-shoots.” The term is a little more fluid these days, and point-and-shoot cameras typically provide approximately the same level of settings control as interchangeable lens cameras.
However, the point-and-shoot’s spirit is one of simple, enjoyable, and spontaneous shooting, and the cameras we’ve chosen for this list reflect this.
For those who want to take pictures but don’t care too much about the details, these are versatile cameras. This is not to say that they are overly straightforward; some of these cameras actually have quite a lot of power. However, all of them provide the straightforward, spontaneous shooting experience that is typical of point-and-shoot cameras. We also have a list of the best compact cameras for more options, and if you want to go back in time, check out our list of the best film cameras for beginners.
Many of the cameras on this list have been put through our team’s testing. We evaluated their performance by putting them through their paces in actual shooting situations, and our findings informed our comments for each entry in this guide. At Creative Bloq, you can learn more about how we test products.
We also have a guide to the best cameras in general, which includes advanced options for professionals and enthusiasts, for a broader selection of options. We also have a list of the best memory cards and the best cameras for beginners, which you’ll need once you choose your camera.
More than just a point-and-shoot camera, the Olympus Tough TG-6 is more. It is a “tough compact” camera, which means it is waterproof, shockproof, freezeproof, and more. Similar to a GoPro, it has a design more akin to a traditional camera and is built to keep going in virtually any shooting situation.
The TG-6 is still pretty much the best tough compact you can buy, according to our comprehensive review. Its optical zoom lens, which GoPros do not have, puts it ahead of many other cameras with similar specs. It has a range of 25-100mm equivalent, making it ideal for a wide variety of subjects and perspectives. We also liked that it has a big maximum aperture of f/2, which gives you more options in low light. Excellent if you intend to continue shooting into the evening.
The TG-6’s relatively small sensor is something to keep in mind, and this is a problem that plagues both tough compacts and action cameras. Because its 1/2.3-inch type sensor is roughly the same size as those found in the majority of smartphones, you won’t notice a significant improvement in dynamic range or image quality over your phone.
When it comes to point-and-shoot cameras, this is the best option available. As we stated plainly in our review, the Fujifilm X100V is arguably a perfect camera because it accomplishes precisely what it sets out to do. Since the X100’s debut in 2010, the combination of an APS-C sensor and a fixed 35mm equivalent lens has been around for five iterations and has remained enduringly popular. This is an excellent camera for everyday and street photography.
As we mentioned in our review, the excellent images that come out of the camera are another feature of the Fujifilm X cameras. If you don’t like spending a lot of time editing images in software, a Fujifilm X-Trans sensor’s vivid, crisp JPEGs might appeal to you.
It is true that it does not have a zoom lens, but you should have known this going in: if you want a zoom lens, you should not purchase this camera. We believe that the prime lens’s sacrifice of sharpness is well worth it. Therefore, the only significant drawback of the X100V is its price, which is significantly higher than that of any other camera on this list. If you can afford it, this camera’s exquisite engineering and high-end design make it well worth the price.
The Lumix TZ200—also known as the ZS200 in the United States—offers a leap forward in zoom capability. Panasonic’s TZ series of travel-friendly superzooms has long been incredibly popular with roaming photographers. This camera has incredible reach because Panasonic has somehow managed to fit a 24-360mm equivalent onto a tiny body.
It is a camera that is brilliantly versatile, uncomplicated, and still fits in a pocket thanks to its one-inch sensor, which gives it real flexibility in all lighting conditions. Whether you want to take low-quality prints to use in your work or high-quality reference photos for a creative project: This is an excellent option.