Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about ourreview process here.We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.The RundownBest Overall:Canon PowerShot ELPH 360 at Amazon"A compact point-and-shoot digital camera that delivers crisp image quality for the amateur photographer."Best Budget:Sony DSC-W800 at Amazon"All the basic features that you would need with a point-and-shoot camera for a seriously affordable price."Best Waterproof Point-and-Shoot:Nikon Coolpix W100 at Amazon"Ready to tackle ocean photography right out of the box."Best Design:Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 Neo Classic Instant Film Camera at Amazon"Unique is its impressive vintage design. It looks like something from before the digital age."Best Starter Kit:Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-H300 Bundle at Amazon"A solid camera package that won't break the $200 mark."Best Action Cam:GoPro GoPro Hero7 Silver at Amazon"GoPro is a name that is synonymous with dynamic, rugged action cameras."Runner-Up, Best Action Cam:SJCAM SJ6 at Amazon"An action camera that's made for being right in the thick of any activity."Best Waterproof:Fujifilm FinePix XP140 at Amazon
Getting a decent camera doesn't have to cost a mint thanks to our collection of the best digital cameras for under $200. While these cameras may not feature the same qualities seen in some of the best DSLR cameras, they cost a fraction of the price and still bring a lot of positive qualities to the table.
There are a number of features you'll want to pay attention to when shopping around for a digital camera, regardless of price. Optical or digital zoom is one of the most convincing reasons to use a dedicated camera for photos rather than your phone. Apart from allowing you to get closer to your subject, dedicated cameras generally offer better all-around picture quality for both still images and video, letting a camera with the appropriate connectivity double as a high-quality webcam if you need it. A bundle like the Sony DSC-H300 at Amazon is a perfect way to get everything you need in one spot, but something like the DSC-W800 at Amazon is an ideal budget-friendly option.
If you're just getting started with amateur photography, and you're trying to make heads and tails of everything, make sure to read our article on Point-and-shoot vs. DSLR cameras before deciding which of the best digital cameras under $200 is right for you.
Best Overall:Canon PowerShot ELPH 3604.6 Buy on AmazonBuy on Best BuyBuy on Walmart
Canon has a long track record of producing top-notch cameras for any budget or experience level. With the Canon PowerShot ELPH, you get a compact point-and-shoot digital camera that delivers crisp image quality for the amateur photographer at an extremely reasonable price point.
This camera excels at its ease of use. With up to 12X zoom capabilities and an Optical Image Stabilizer, your photos will come out clear with every shot. The Smart AUTO function selects the appropriate settings for any given situation, so that you don't have to. Once you've captured the perfect image, built-in Wi-Fi capabilities allow for quick and easy photo transfers to your device of choice, which makes sharing your favorite pictures a breeze.
The Canon PowerShot ELPH also comes equipped with a few fun settings, such as Fisheye, Toy Camera and Monochrome effects, as well as HD video, so you can get creative with your imagery. Available in black, blue or red and small enough to fit in your pocket, the Canon PowerShot ELPH is the perfect point-and-shoot camera for amateur photographers who want a camera that is highly portable and easy to use without sacrificing quality.
Best Budget:Sony DSC-W8004Buy on AmazonBuy on Best Buy
It can be a struggle to find a decent camera that balances image quality with affordability. The Sony DSCW800/B 20.1-megapixel digital camera offers all the basic features that you would need with a point-and-shoot camera for a seriously affordable price. While you would get slightly more features with a more expensive model, the Sony DSCW800/B allows for 5X optical zoom, SteadyShot image stabilization, 360o panoramic capabilities and a 720p HD movie setting for recording high-quality videos. Sony's simple and compact model makes it perfect for everyday use, and a USB charging port allows you to take this camera on-the-go.Sony DSC-W800 Review
Best Waterproof Point-and-Shoot:Nikon Coolpix W1003.5 Buy on AmazonBuy on Best BuyBuy on B&H Photo VideoNikon Coolpix W100 Review
Nikon's Coolpix W100 is a go-anywhere, do-anything type of camera that is ready to tackle ocean photography right out of the box. Capable of going underwater up to a depth of 33 feet, the Nikon is also shockproof from a drop of 5.9 feet, as well as freezeproof all the way down to a temperature of 14 degrees Fahrenheit.
Snapping shots with the W100 underwater is a 13.2-megapixel CMOS image sensor and NIKKOR 3x optical zoom with a 6x dynamic fine zoom. Once you've concluded your latest underwater adventure, moving pictures from the W100 is a snap, thanks to Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth connectivity alongside Nikon's SnapBridge app that's compatible with both iOS and Android devices.
It weighs .82 pounds and the rated battery life allows for a fairly standard 220 shots before requiring a re-charge. If your adventurous side keeps you away from charging for days at a time, a second battery is highly recommended to ensure you can capture every shot 20,000 leagues under the sea.The 7 Best Waterproof Cameras of 2021
Best Design:Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 Neo Classic Instant Film CameraBuy on Amazon
Here's a trip down memory lane. The Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 is just one in a large line of instant cameras produced by Fujifilm and its competitor Polaroid. What makes the Mini 90 Neo Classic unique is its impressive vintage design. It looks like something from before the digital age.
To be clear, this camera serves a very specific purpose: It shoots and immediately prints images like an old Polaroid. If that's not something you're into, turn away now. If it is, buckle in. The Mini 90 can automatically detect the brightness of its surroundings and adjust the flash and shutter speed accordingly—much like a digital camera. Macro mode allows for short distance photography as close as 30-60 cm, and the Kids mode boosts the shutter speed for capturing fast-moving objects.
Perhaps coolest of all, the Mini 90 has a double exposure mode that captures two images on one film sheet. This allows for a variety of creative options when combined with the macro, light/dark options, timer, and flash modes.The 8 Best Instant Cameras of 2021
Best Starter Kit:Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-H300 BundleBuy on AmazonBuy on B&H Photo VideoBuy on Adorama.com
When you think of Sony cameras now, your mind probably turns to their wide range of mirrorless options, which makes sense because Sony really has pulled ahead in that segment of the market. But if you're looking for a solid camera package that won't break the $200 mark, you'll want to take a look at their DSC-H300 bundle.
First, the camera's specs: there's a 20.1MP sensor for a ton of pixels (more than some DSLRs); it's a fixed lens, but it offers a 35x optical zoom for tons of distance flexibility without digital degradation; plus, it looks and feels like a DSLR so you'll get used to that functionality before diving into the more intermediate market.
This particular bundle is great for starters as it comes with a 16GB SD card for storing your photos, an SD card reader for interfacing with your computer, rechargeable batteries, a holster camera bag, a cleaning kit, and even a lens pen.
Best Action Cam:GoPro Hero7 SilverBuy on AmazonBuy on Best BuyBuy on B&H Photo Video
GoPro is a name that is synonymous with dynamic, rugged action cameras. While the GoPro Hero7 Silver is hardly their newest model, it has seen a considerable price reduction since it's inception making it more affordable than ever. Just like nearly all GoPro action cameras, the Hero7 Silver is waterproof and can handle its fair share of bumps and bruises.
Beyond just being able to take a beating, the Hero7 includes an array of intuitive features like touch screen and voice controls enabling you to take 10 Mp photos or 4K 30 FPS video with ease. The camera also comes packaged with a variety of adhesive mounting options allowing the Hero7 to tag along wherever your adventures take you.
Runner-Up, Best Action Cam:SJCAM SJ6Buy on AmazonBuy on B&H Photo VideoBuy on Adorama.com
SJCam's Legend SJ6 Action Camera is the ideal purchase to make sure you never miss a moment no matter where you are on Earth, no matter the conditions. Featuring gyro stabilization, slow-motion recording, a metal body for durability and an external microphone for increased audio capturing, the SJ6 is an action camera that's made for being right in the thick of any activity.
The camera offers an F/2.5 aperture and a 16-megapixel sensor that captures a wide 166-degree viewing angle. Images and videos can be previewed on the two-inch touchscreen, while the .96-inch front display offers quick access to a timer. Beyond photography, the SJ6 captures 1080p video at either 60 or 30fps, as well as 720p video at 120 or 60fps. An external storage card up to 32GB can boost the available memory for keeping captured videos on the SJ6 before it's moved off to another device.
The 1000mAh battery offers around 65 minutes of battery life at 60fps and 113 minutes of video capture at 30fps. And the included waterproof case allows the SJ6 to go below water up to 100 feet for 30 minutes.The 9 Best Action Cameras of 2021
Best Waterproof:Fujifilm FinePix XP140Buy on AmazonBuy on Best BuyBuy on B&H Photo Video
Finding a solid waterproof point-and-shoot camera for under $200 is no easy task, but Fujifilm has managed to put together an excellent option with the FinePix XP140. This digital camera features a 5x optical zoom and 2x digital zoom, allowing you to capture stunning 16.4 Mp images with ease, and an optical image stabilization feature helps reduce image blur.
The built-in Bluetooth and Wi-Fi make sharing images super convenient, allowing you to effortlessly pair with devices and allows you to geotag your images by embedding time and location data into each photo.
The XP140 was built with several features specifically to handle underwater photography, the least of which is its IPX8 waterproof rating, allowing in to handle operation in up to 25 meters of water (roughly 78 feet). The other standout feature is the dedicated underwater and underwater macro photo modes that help maintain a solid color balance when shooting underwater.Final Verdict
Our favorite digital camera under $200 is the Canon PowerShot ELPH 360, it's performance and affordability make it an excellent entry for point-and-shoot cameras. However, if you are in the market for a DSLR camera that gets you up and running without robbing you blind, the Sony DSC-H300 Bundle is a bargain at twice the price.
What to Look for in a Digital Camera Under $200
Optical zoom - When searching for a digital camera, take its optical zoom abilities into consideration. While some of the available offerings only provide standard zoom capabilities, others pack powerful superzoom lenses for capturing images at extreme distances.
Connectivity - If you want to upload your favorite photos to Facebook and Instagram quickly, ensure that your chosen camera offers options that allow you to connect your smartphone (like Bluetooth or Wi-Fi).
Video abilities - Not all cameras are excellent at video recording. If you're looking to capture videos of the kids or your latest vacation, opt for a model that offers a minimum of 1080p HD video. Also, options with stabilized video help remove any shakiness caused by your hand.