If you’re in search of the best camera for the outdoors, you’ll want something that’s both lightweight and durable enough to withstand various weather conditions.

Today, I’m here to present to you the 10 best outdoor cameras for affordable prices.

In this article, you’ll uncover a range of suitable options and also learn about my personal favorite pick for outdoor photography. 

QUICK TAKE

  • The Nikon D3500 is a fantastic choice for beginners
  • The Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV is a great budget-friendly option

10 Best Cameras For The Outdoors (On a Budget)


Find my list of the 10 best affordable cameras for outdoors:

Nikon D3500

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Nikon D3500 W/ AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR Black
2,194 Reviews
Nikon D3500 W/ AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR Black
  • A DSLR that's as easy to use as a point and shoot camera
  • Compact, comfortable design that's great for travel and special events
  • Image sensor that's 15x larger than those used in typical smartphones for sharper,...

For beginners on a budget, the Nikon D3500 reigns supreme as the ultimate camera choice.

Compared to its predecessor, the D3500 boasts significant improvements. Its APS-C sensor remains at 24MP but delivers even better performance.

Battery life has also received a substantial boost, capturing an impressive 1,550 frames per charge, compared to the already capable 1,200 shots of the D3400.

The D3500 sports a more ergonomic grip and a slightly lighter, subtly redesigned body. Although mirrorless options like the Sony A6000 warrant consideration, the D3500 shines as the more user-friendly option, especially for those utilizing longer lenses.

Some rigorous testing revealed that the Nikon D3500 consistently produced high-quality images while offering effortless handling and intuitive controls—making it an excellent choice for beginners looking to dive into the world of photography.

To be able to capture all the landscapes you’ll need a speedy and spacious SD Card. Find Top 7 Nikon D3500 SD Card Recommendations.

OLYMPUS E-M10 Mark IV

Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV Camera with M.Zuiko Digital ED 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 EZ Lens, Silver
203 Reviews
Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV Camera with M.Zuiko Digital ED 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 EZ Lens, Silver
  • 20 MP Live MOS Sensor
  • Always-on connection and background connection via Bluetooth & OI Share Smartphone...
  • Flip-down monitor and dedicated selfie mode. Selfie mode automatically turns on when...

Equipped with a capable 20.3MP sensor and exceptional in-body image stabilization, this camera consistently delivers captivating images, even when using the kit lens.

While video capabilities are limited to 4K/30p without microphone or headphone inputs, the Mark IV truly shines when it comes to still photography.

Featuring an ergonomic grip, a user-friendly button layout, and a convenient flip-down touchscreen, the Mark IV is an accessible upgrade for smartphone photographers.

Sony Alpha a6000

Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Digital Camera 24.3MP SLR Camera with 3.0-Inch LCD (Black) w/16-50mm Power Zoom Lens
  • Advanced 24.2MP back Illuminated 35 millimeter full frame image sensor
  • ISO 100 25600 (expandable to 51200). Lens compatibility: Sony E mount lenses
  • Hybrid AF with 179 point focal plane phase detection and 25 contrast detect points

While it may be considered old, most of its specifications still hold up remarkably well today.

With a 24MP APS-C sensor, a fast hybrid 179-point autofocus system, and continuous shooting at 11 frames per second (fps), the A6000 delivers outstanding image quality.

However, its age becomes evident in certain aspects. It is limited to shooting 1080p Full HD video and lacks a touch-sensitive screen, which can be slightly frustrating when setting autofocus points.

Find 7 Best SD Cards for Sony A6000 Video.

Canon EOS RP

Canon EOS RP Full Frame Mirrorless Vlogging Portable Digital Camera with 26.2MP Full-Frame CMOS Sensor, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, 4K Video Recording and 3.0” Vari-Angle Touch LCD Screen, Body, Black,
  • Lightest, smallest full-frame EOS camera
  • RF mount compatible with RF lenses and EF/EF-S lenses with optional mount adapter
  • High image quality with 26.2 Megapixel Full-frame CMOS Sensor and DIGIC 8 Image...

The Canon EOS RP is a portable full-frame mirrorless camera that offers an impressive feature set, excellent performance, and a reasonable price.

Sharing the same RF mount as the EOS R, its native lens selection may be limited, but the bundled adapter allows you to utilize existing EF glass.

Despite housing a 26.2MP full-frame sensor, the tests revealed the EOS RP to be surprisingly compact while maintaining a solid build quality.

While the button placement may not please everyone, both the physical controls and responsive touchscreen are satisfactory.

As is common with affordable cameras, the Canon EOS RP does have its limitations. It lacks sensor-based image stabilization, and the battery life is somewhat disappointing.

The metering system is slightly sensitive, and there are constraints such as a rolling shutter and a 4K crop that impact its video capabilities. 

Check out 12 Best Memory Cards for Canon Cameras.

AKASO Brave 7 LE 

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AKASO Brave 7 LE 4K30FPS 20MP WiFi Action Camera with Touch Screen EIS 2.0 Zoom Remote Control 131 Feet Underwater Camera with 2X 1350mAh Batteries Support External Microphone Vlog Camera
  • BORN ALL-WEATHER ACTION CAMERA - Brave 7 LE action camera is weatherproof and...
  • CONVENIENT DUAL-DISPLAY - With innovate dual color screens design, you can change...
  • SHOOT 4K VIDEO & 20MP PHOTO - This action camera can take hyper-quality 4K 30Fps...

Despite its budget-friendly price, this camera is loaded with impressive features, including weather-sealing and a convenient front-facing screen that vloggers will appreciate.

The audio quality of this action cam surpassed that of other non-GoPro options, particularly in quieter environments.

The Brave 7 LE also boasts an intuitive touchscreen interface, a feature often overlooked in budget action cameras. However, there are a few downsides to consider.

While the video quality at 4K resolution is decent, it has a slightly soft appearance that doesn’t quite match the camera’s other features.The image stabilization falls short compared to GoPro standards.

Nevertheless, given its price, the Brave 7 LE remains one of the best action cameras for the outdoors available.

Find 5 Best GoPro Camera (or similar) for Hiking.

Olympus Tough TG-6

OM SYSTEM OLYMPUS TG-6 Red Underwater camera, Waterproof, Freeze proof, High Resolution Bright, 4K Video 44x Macro shooting
  • Water proof (50 feet /15 meter), dust proof, shock proof (7 feet / 2.1 meter), crush...
  • High resolution F2.0 lens, maximum 8x zoom, true pic VIII, back illuminated CMOS...
  • Variable macro system comprised of 4 macro shooting modes, magnified shooting up to 1...

Designed to be freeze-proof, shockproof, and waterproof, its sturdy industrial shell ensures survival in extreme conditions. Operating the camera is a breeze, thanks to its large buttons, and the improved 3-inch LCD provides excellent visibility even in bright environments.

Though the focus is a bit snappy, the zoom range of 25-100mm adds versatility, although some detail may be lost at the telephoto end.

The image quality, considering the 1/2.3-inch sensor, is decent with vibrant colors, although the TG-6 tends to overexpose. 

Panasonic LUMIX G100

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Panasonic LUMIX G100 4k Mirrorless Camera for Photo and Video, Built-in Microphone with Tracking, Micro Four Thirds Interchangeable Lens System, 12-32mm Lens, 5-Axis Hybrid I.S., DC-G100KK (Black)
  • Feature-Packed Camera: Why trust your memories to a phone. With exceptional...
  • Grows as Your Skills Grow: iA (intelligent auto) mode gives the perfect shot every...
  • Use as a Webcam: Easily connect the G100 to your computer so that your web calls,...

For vloggers and YouTubers on a tight budget, the G100 is a fantastic choice with its compact design and impressive feature set. It is small in size and lightweight, making it a travel-friendly camera, albeit at the expense of direct access controls commonly found in larger alternatives.

The G100 also benefits from a wide range of compatible Micro Four Thirds lenses, providing valuable versatility.

G100 has impressive video-focused features, particularly the Nokia Ozo Audio system.

This innovative system utilizes three microphones to automatically detect sound from different directions, and it performed exceptionally well in the tests.

The footage quality was impressive, showcasing vibrant colors and excellent detail. However, users did notice some loss of detail in low-light conditions and a crop in the 4K 30p video, which was a bit disappointing.

Panasonic Lumix FZ80

Panasonic LUMIX FZ80 4K Long Zoom Digital Camera (18.1 MP, 60X, 20-1200mm Lens, Black) Bundle with 64 GB Memory Card, Camera System Gadget Bag with Photography Gadget Bag, Tripod, and Cable (5 Items)
  • Bundle Includes: Panasonic LUMIX FZ80 18.1MP 4K 60x Long Zoom Digital Camera (Black),...
  • Sensor: 18.1MP sensor resolution with optically stabilized 20-1200mm (60x) LUMIX DC...
  • Features: Extremely long zoom and wide-angle for versatile photography / 4K Photo...

f you prioritize zoom reach, it remains a reliable choice, offering an impressive lens range from a wide 20mm to a staggering 1200mm. It is capable of delivering decent image quality, with the caveat of being aware of its limitations.

For optimal results, it is recommended to shoot at ISO 800 or, if necessary, ISO 1600 in low-light situations. It’s best to avoid challenging lighting conditions.

In daylight settings, the Lumix FZ80 proves to be a valuable companion, especially considering its price point. Panasonic’s Power O.I.S. image stabilization performs well, ensuring stability at longer focal lengths.

Although the viewfinder could be improved, it still stands as one of the best affordable bridge cameras on the market.

Sony Alpha ZV-E10 

SPECIAL SALE
Sony Alpha ZV-E10 - APS-C Interchangeable Lens Mirrorless Vlog Camera - Black
  • Large 24.2MP APS-C Exmor CMOS Sensor and fast BIONZ X processor
  • 4K Movie oversampled from 6k w/ full pixel readout, no pixel binning
  • Product Showcase Setting transitions focus from face to object

Sony hasn’t made significant advancements in APS-C 4K video technology in recent years, but the ZV-E10 stands as the manufacturer’s first APS-C body with an articulating touchscreen—an essential feature for vlogging.

The camera also impresses with its large and high-performing internal microphone, complete with a clip-on muffler. Sony’s renowned autofocus system is present as well, ensuring excellent focus accuracy.

The ZV-E10 offers an attractive price point.

It is unfortunate that the camera lacks in-body image stabilization, and the menus cannot be controlled via touch—a noticeable oversight for a vlogging camera.

Nevertheless, for a specific audience focused on the YouTube era, this camera hits the mark perfectly.

Panasonic LUMIX G7

SPECIAL SALE
Panasonic LUMIX G7 4K Digital Camera, with LUMIX G VARIO 14-42mm Mega O.I.S. Lens, 16 Megapixel Mirrorless Camera, 3-Inch LCD, DMC-G7KK (Black)
  • Professional photo and video: Performance: 16 megapixel micro four thirds sensor with...
  • 4K video Capture: 4K QFHD video recording (3840 x 2160) with 3 unique 4K ultra HD...
  • Intuitive Controls: Easily control aperture and shutter settings with the front and...

While its 16MP Micro Four Thirds sensor may not match the latest sensors in terms of resolution, the image quality is still commendable, and the camera even offers the capability to shoot 4K video.

Although there is no in-body stabilization, many Panasonic lenses provide stabilization, and there is a wide selection of small and affordable lenses available for this camera.

The Lumix G7 is often sold with a Panasonic 14-42mm kit lens, which is perfectly fine. However, if you have the opportunity to acquire it with the later and superior 12-60mm kit lens, it is even more advantageous.

 

Which One Would Be Your Choice?


Sincerely, I think that the Nikon D3500 is a fantastic choice for beginners.

It’s a user-friendly DSLR with a 24MP APS-C sensor, long battery life, and a comfortable design.

Even with the popularity of mirrorless cameras, the D3500’s optical viewfinder and superb image quality really stand out.

The Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV is a great budget-friendly mirrorless option, that features a 20.3MP sensor, in-body image stabilization, and a handy flip-down touchscreen.

While it’s more focused on still photography than video, especially in low light, it’s a wonderful and affordable option for capturing your outdoor adventures.

 

More cameras and accessories for outdoor activities:

 

Thanks for reading! 🙏

I hope this guide helped you learn about the 10 Best Cameras For The Outdoors 🙂

 

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