Although they haven’t been around for that long, the latest incarnations of popular action cameras from a range of brands have taken the world by storm.
As technology has improved, their popularity has soared, and many bloggers, vloggers, content creators and image-making professionals are sure to pack these portable, high-quality devices as an essential part of their gear.
They’re super lightweight, often shoot amazing 4K footage with a high degree of stabilisation and are as durable, resilient and shock-proof as they come.
With many examples on the market, it’s important to do a bit of research. The market leader is clearly GoPro, a name that has become synonymous with the action camera industry, but other manufacturers are catching up and many offer quality set-ups for similar prices that do the same job.
Almost all action cameras shoot in 4K these days, but watch out for the levels of stabilisation if you’re set on taking them out into the wild or using them for action sports – the quality differs in this respect. We found that those with a front-facing camera are highly useful, especially if you’re vlogging, but you can save a bit of money if you’re prepared to forgo that.
How we tested
We put each of these cameras through their paces in a number of different lighting conditions (typically an area small sensor cameras like action cameras struggle with), weather conditions and filming set-ups. These ranged from more professional shoots to everyday footage recorded on walks and while exercising. We also tested stabilisation levels and general package design – assessing what comes with the camera in terms of mounts, a key area for the usability of these devices.
The best action cameras for 2022 are:
- Best ultimate premium action camera – GoPro hero 10 black: £429, Amazon.co.uk
- Best for latest cutting-edge tech – GoPro hero 9 black: £329.98, Gopro.com
- Best for 4K video – GoPro hero 8 black: £259.98, Gopro.com
- Best for 360-degree footage – Insta360 one R: £499.99, Store.insta360.com
- Best for all-out action – Garmin verb ultra 30: £389.99, Garmin.com
- Best for budget-conscious buyers – Akaso brave 7 LE action camera: £139.99, Amazon.co.uk
- Best for slow motion footage – Sony RX0 II: £608, Proav.co.uk
- Best for portability – DJI pocket 2: £339, Wexphotovideo.com