10 Best 4k Camcorder Choices For Serious Videographers

Floating camcorder

Are you looking to take your recording game to the next level? Then come along for the ride as we search the market for the best 4K camcorder. Read on, and you will find our reviews for 10 highly praised camcorders. We will parse out the advantages and disadvantages of each, seeing how they stack up against one another. By the end, you will have all the information you need to make the best purchase for your recording needs.

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Product FAQ

a guy using a Sony camcorder

​Image Source: Pixabay

1. What Qualities Should I Look for in the Best 4K Camcorders?

The best 4K camcorders, first and foremost, capture video footage of the highest quality. For that, they require superior components from their lenses to their sensors. Additionally, the best 4K camcorders are resilient and capable of taking a hit or two. Many of them can even be used underwater.

Be sure to also consider the form factor. Think about your most likely recording situations. Will you need to have one hand free as you record? Will you need a camera that is easy to use while taking on other activities? Ask yourself these questions to find the best 4K camcorder for your specific lifestyle.

2. Where Can I Buy the Best 4K Camcorders?

You can find varying selections of 4K camcorders at most stores carrying electronic goods. However, for the easiest access to all of the best 4K camcorders, we recommend you take a look online on sites like Amazon.

How We Reviewed

We chose these ten camcorders because of their popularity and success on the market. Each of these camcorders is a strong contender for being the best 4K camcorder on the market. We want to ensure you have all the necessary information, so we reviewed them according to their features, their pros and cons, and their price. For your convenience, we have also included direct purchasing links in our reviews.

Overall Price Range

These camcorders range in price from $100 to $2,200. The main price determinants come down to the build quality, the quality of the components (such as the lens and sensor), and the additional features included, such as time-lapse video recording.

What We Reviewed

video camera and microphone

​Image Source: Pexels

  • ​RICOH waterproof action camera WG-M2
  • ​Veho Muvi K-Series K-2 Pro 4k Wi-Fi Handsfree Camera
  • ​SONY 4K video camera
  • ​Panasonic HC-X1000 1080p 4K Ultra High Definition Camcorder
  • ​Canon XC10 4K Professional Camcorder
  • ​GoPro HERO7 Black
  • ​JVC GY-HM170UA Camcorder
  • ​Sony FDR-AX100/B 4K Video Camera
  • ​PANASONIC HC-WXF991K 4K Cinema-Like Camcorder
  • ​Sony FDR-X1000V/W 4K Action Cam

RICOH Waterproof Action Camera WG-M2

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Features

The RICOH Waterproof Action Camera WG-M2 delivers versatile functionality in a highly compact, durable form. This camera is built to last through your wildest adventures and can definitely take a hit. It is fully waterproof with a rating of IPX8 and is able to get the job done even when submerged 20 meters deep in water as cold as -10 degrees Celsius. The RICOH WG-M2 is also dustproof with a rating of IPX6, and it can survive the impact of 2-meter falls.

The RICOH Waterproof Action Camera WG-M2 captures stunning 4K video footage at a super wide-angle. It comes with one rechargeable lithium-ion battery, a charging power adapter, a USB cable, a lens protector, a water lens protector, and a manual.

PROS

  • ​One of the best 4K camcorders in terms of affordability
  • ​Waterproof
  • ​Dust Proof
  • ​Sturdy build that can withstand impacts
  • ​impressive video quality
  • ​Great audio
  • ​Comes with free bonus accessories

CONS

  • ​Only 30 frames per second

Veho Muvi K-Series K-2 Pro 4k Wi-Fi Hands Free Camera

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Features

The Veho Muvi K-Series K-2 Pro 4K Wi-Fi Hands Free Camera is built with the adventurer in mind and is designed to be compact and easy to use while multi-tasking. It offers fantastic video recording performance at an astonishingly affordable price. This camera records ultra high-resolution video at 4K with 15 frames per second, 2.7K at 30 frames per second, 1080p with 60 frames per second, and 720p with 120 frames per second.

The Veho Muvi K-Series K-2 Pro is equipped with the all-powerful XA-9 Hercules chipset which improves on the performance of its predecessor, the XA-7 Achilles. It also comes with a smart LCD touch screen that allows you to easily preview videos and photos and change settings and preferences through an intuitive menu system.

This camcorder can take 12MP single photos, time-lapse, and face bursts with up to 10 photos per second. It also features built-in Wi-Fi, so you can record, live view, and share your videos and photos on social media with the free Muvi K-Series smartphone app.

PROS

  • ​Can connect to Wi-Fi
  • ​Easy, Hand free recording
  • ​Has a detachable screen
  • ​One of the best 4K camcorders for someone on a tight budget
  • ​Excellent battery life
  • ​Accepts GoPro accessories

CONS

  • ​Somewhat bulky and inconvenient case
  • ​Somewhat counterintuitive user controls

SONY 4K Video Camera Handycam

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Features

The SONY 4K Video Camera Handycam is a gorgeous device with a subdued bronze brown design that feels and looks great in the hand. This camcorder features 4K ultra HD (3840 x 2160) recording, a 1/2.5 type (7.20mm) back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS Sensor, and Balanced Optical SteadyShot with 5-axis Intelligent Active mode. It comes built with a 26.8mm wide-angle ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* Lens, which delivers up to 20x optical zoom with 30x/40x (4K/HD) Clear Image Zoom. As an added bonus, this camcorder is capable of 4K time-lapse capture.

This camcorder also delivers exceptional audio recording quality with its new mic structure that captures sounds from five directions with approximately 40% less background noise.

The SONY 4K Handycam Video Camera is an ideal option for anyone looking to capture precise footage of quick-paced action. With its Fast Intelligence AF, it can autofocus at blazing fast speeds, producing crystal clear footage of your most action-packed adventures. It is perfect for recording sports, outdoor excursions, and more.

PROS

  • ​Lightweight and compact
  • ​Gorgeous video quality
  • ​Incredibly steady shots with 5-axis Intelligent Active mode
  • ​Comes with a high-quality lens
  • ​Can handle 4K time-lapse capture
  • ​Fantastic audio recording quality

CONS

  • ​Somewhat underwhelming battery life

Panasonic HC-X1000 1080p 4K Ultra High Definition Camcorder

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Features

The Panasonic HC-X1000 1080p 4K Ultra High Definition Camcorder is a professional-grade camcorder delivering the highest levels of quality. It shoots and records cinema 4K at 24p and UHD at broadcast compatible frame rates. It is built for versatility, allowing a seamless transition into your already established broadcast workflow.

The Panasonic HC-X1000 comes with a 1/2.3" MOS sensor that shoots at constant 4K resolution, as well as two built-in Venus processing engines that scale 4K images for full HD results. It also comes with a built-in 20x Leica Dicomar lens, featuring four lens groups and electronically linked geared iris rings that allow manual control.

This camera supports two optical stabilization modes: one for 4K and another for HD. It features two viewfinders, giving users the choice between the traditional tilt up color EVF or the pull out LCD high-resolution touchscreen. For a more natural viewing experience when shooting handheld, Panasonic has designed this camera with the LCD touchscreen placed above the lens.

The Panasonic HC-X1000 records in .mp4, .mov, or AVCHD codecs and comes with dual SD media card slots.

PROS

  • ​Allows for a great deal of user customization
  • Highly intuitive interface
  • ​Amazing picture and video quality
  • ​Up to 20x optical zoom
  • ​Comes with excellent lens
  • ​Wi-Fi and NFC compatible
  • ​Has Two SD card slots

CONS

  • ​Not the best 4K camcorder for someone on a budget
  • ​Not the most compact design

Canon XC10 4K Professional Camcorder

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Features

The Canon XC10 4K Professional Camcorder comes in a sleek, lightweight, and versatile design, delivering 4K and full HD video shooting and 12MP digital still photography. This ergonomic camcorder handles a wide variety of video and still production tasks with ease, making it the ideal choice for professionals and enthusiasts alike.

The XC10 features a 4K imaging system made up of superior components, such as a Genuine Canon 10x Wide-Angle Zoom Lens with 2x Digital Teleconverter and Optical Image Stabilization. Its lens features a zoom ratio of 27.3-273mm for movies and 24.1-241mm for photos. Its specially designed Canon 12 Megapixel one-inch CMOS sensor offers 12 stops of exposure latitude. If that were not enough, it also comes with the new DIGIC DV5 signal processor that powers its blistering fast performance.

This 4K camcorder provides both slow and fast-motion recording, multiple custom picture settings, and interval shooting for time-lapse still photography. For still photography, it features a mechanical shutter to reduce rolling-shutter distortion, up to 2.8 fps performance, support for multiple aspect ratios, and compatibility with EOS accessories.

PROS

  • ​High frame rates (up to 120 fps at 720p)
  • ​Compact Design
  • ​Easy to use
  • ​Sturdy build

CONS

  • ​Could use frame ware update
  • ​No Detachable lens
  • ​Not the best 4K camcorder in terms of editing compatibility

GoPro HERO7 Black

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Features

The GoPro HERO7 Black is an Amazon's Choice camcorder that is also available in silver and white designs. This camera is specially designed to accommodate the demands of recording a highly active lifestyle. With its rugged build that is waterproof to 33 feet, it can handle whatever journey you embark on.

It comes with a wide variety of features that any adventurer will quickly fall in love with. It has HyperSmooth Video Stabilization that mimics the quality found with a gimble - without a gimble. This camera predicts your movements and automatically corrects for camera shake to provide you with silky smooth footage. It is also capable of time warp video, allowing you to control the speed and even ramp it up to 30x to condense long activities into bite-sized videos. You can go the other way, as well, with up to 8x slow-motion video recording.

The GoPro HERO7 gets you not only the best videos but the best photos as well. It comes with a highly sophisticated Super Photo function that automatically applies HDR, local tone mapping, and noise reduction to optimize your shots.

This camera also features incredibly convenient voice control functionality. The HERO7 is easy to use hands-free due to voice commands like, "GoPro, take a photo." Capturing your brightest moments has never been easier.

PROS

  • ​Amazing 4K 60 fps video
  • ​Incredibly effective hyperstabilization
  • ​Performs well in low light

CONS

  • ​Cannot live stream and record in 4K (1080p at most)
  • ​Disappointing battery life
  • ​Prone to overheating

JVC GY-HM170UA Camcorder

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Features

The JVC GY-HM170UA Camcorder is an ideal choice for creatives at all levels. Whether you are a professional or an amateur, this camcorder is designed to meet your needs.

This camera records 3840 x 2180 UHD 4K in 24 or 30p at a bit rate of 150 Mb/s, encoded in an .MOV-wrapped H.264 codec file. It can also record 1080p at up to 60 fps in an 8-bit 4:2:2 50 Mb/s .MOV file or in AVCHD for compatibility with consumer editing software.

The JVC GY-HM170 features both a viewfinder and a flip-out LCD, giving you room for flexibility. Its 3.5" LCD panel has a resolution of 920,000 pixels, and its 0.24" viewfinder has a resolution of 1.56 million pixels. Whichever display you use, you have the option to enable a focus assist overlay that ensures critical focus.

This camcorder comes with 12x optical zoom and 24x dynamic zoom, offering a seamless transition between the two with minimal quality loss. It also has a two-position ND filter that helps reduce light to allow the use of a slower shutter speed for more natural motion blur. This filter allows users to choose between two settings: 1/4 and 1/16.

The GY-HM170UA is designed to give users plenty of freedom. It has nine user-assignable buttons, letting you program the camera in a way that saves you time and lets you get your recordings up and running as quickly as possible.

PROS

  • ​Very good image quality from the lens
  • ​Smooth Zooming
  • ​Nine user-assignable buttons
  • ​Has viewfinder and flip-out LCD
  • ​Programmable zoom speed
  • ​Detachable handle with built-in audio mixer

CONS

  • ​Disappointing battery life
  • ​Tiny volume knobs
  • ​not great in low light

Sony FDR-AX100/B 4K Video Camera

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Features

The Sony FDR-AX100/B 4K Video Camera is an Amazon's Choice camcorder that has the distinction of being a 2014 Honoree of the International CES Innovations Design and Engineering Awards.

The FDR-AX100/B delivers 4K and 30p video with high frame-rate shooting at up to 120p. It features a 1" Exmor R CMOS sensor with Direct Pixel Read Out. It captures 14MP resolution video and 20MP still images, and with its advanced BIONZ X image procession engine, it does all this at unrivaled speeds and topnotch quality.

This camera is equipped with a new Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* lens. This 29mm wide-angle lens is perfect for capturing breathtaking footage of large landscapes. Paired with Optical SteadyShot Image Stabilization with Intelligent Active Mode, there is nothing this camera cannot handle.

PROS

  • ​Can connect to Wi-Fi and NFC
  • ​Fantastic Image Stabilization
  • ​Performs well in low light
  • ​Great Image and video quality

CONS

  • ​Not the most compact design
  • ​Lens could be wider
  • ​Average battery life

 PANASONIC HC-WXF991K 4K Cinema-Like Camcorder

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Features

The Panasonic HC-WXF991K 4K Cinema-Like Camcorder is an Amazon's Choice product that captures razor-sharp, 4K, Ultra HD video. It comes with an electronic viewfinder that simulates a semi-professional recording experience and allows easy transitioning with a dedicated HDR button. It also comes with the LEICA Decoma Lens with 20x optical zooming and 5-axis Hybrid Optical Image Stabilization. To top it off, it is built with a 1/2.3-inch BSI MOS Sensor that takes its performance to the highest levels.

This camera can handle a wide variety of recording tasks but is especially well-suited for capturing scenes with quick, intense motions, such as sporting events.

PROS

  • ​Max frame rate of 240
  • ​Accepts external microphones
  • ​Great for sports
  • ​Excellent picture quality
  • ​Can link to multiple smartphones
  • ​Can do a time-lapse video
  • ​Can even be used as a baby monitor

CONS

  • ​Has a bit of a learning curve to use

Sony FDR-X1000V/W 4K Action Cam

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Features

The Sony FDR-X1000V/W 4K Action Cam comes in an elegant, minimalist, white design. It captures professional-quality, 4K (3840 x 2160) video recording with up to 240p HD and 120p HD. It features SteadyShot image stabilization, allowing you to record high-quality footage from on top of a bike or even while up in the air. It comes in a splash-proof body, making it ideal for outdoor use.

The Sony FDR-X1000V/W 4K Action Cam uses an ultra-wide angle professional ZEISS lens that provides a viewing angle of up to 170 degrees. Its aperture is f/2.8, allowing you to capture stunning details in low light.

PROS

  • ​Great for underwater recording
  • ​Easy to use
  • ​Compact design
  • ​Wide field of view
  • ​Great microphone

CONS

  • ​Subpar battery life
  • ​Prone to overheating

The Verdict: The Best 4K Camcorders

a videographer taking video on a woman playing a violin

​Image Source: Pexels

After reviewing these ten products extensively, we decided that the two best 4K camcorders are the Panasonic HC-WXF991K Cinema-Like Camcorder and the Panasonic HC-X1000.

The HC-WXF991K is the more affordable option between the two. This camcorder is a multi-functional giant. It can handle a wide variety of recording tasks, including time-lapse video. It can even be used as a baby monitor with smart alerts and two-way communication with a smartphone. Its video quality is fantastic, and it takes great photos as well. If you are looking for a high-quality camcorder at an accessible price, this is an excellent choice.

The HC-X1000 is a lot higher up on the price range, but its overall performance merits its price tag. This camcorder is built to provide professional levels of quality. It comes with a fantastic lens and is extremely user-friendly, allowing for high levels of customization.

Either of these camcorders would make a great addition to your arsenal of recording tools. We are confident you will have an amazing experience working with either.

​Featured Image Source: Pixabay

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