10 Best Digital Cameras for Families
by Kelley Crosbie
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These days, family photos are frequently taken thanks to the smartphones that tag along with us everywhere we go. But as advanced as cell phone cameras have become, you can’t beat the quality images produced by digital cameras, especially if you want to print them out and display them in your home. Because each family is different, the best camera for one family might not be right for another. If you’re trying to determine which camera suits your family unit, whether you’re looking for a camera that is slim and sleek or one that can withstand the most rugged of adventures, we’ve got you covered.
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Canon PowerShot SX620 HS Digital Camera
If you believe good things come in small packages, then the Canon PowerShot SX620 HS might be the best camera for your family. It is slim and sleek so it can go anywhere you go, even if you’re toting snacks, tissues, books, and sports gear. Available in silver, black, and red, the PowerShot SX620 HS adds a dash of personality to the traditional camera. Plus, it's super easy to use and takes beautiful shots due to features like its 25x optical zoom, point-and-shoot operation, and Intelligent IS, which optimizes image stabilization for virtually shake-free images. Like many other cameras, it offers built-in Wi-Fi, 1080p full HD video, and simple transfers to your smartphone via the branded app to quickly and easily share the latest family adventures.
Polaroid POP Instant Digital Camera
Polaroid didn’t only re-release their classic instant camera; they developed an instant digital camera, too, which makes it one of the best cameras for the family that wants to do some serious #ThrowbackThursday posts. Fear not, it's still the same idea: point, click, print immediately. The handheld Polaroid POP Instant Digital Camera prints the classic 3x4-inch photos with a border, just like old times but with a modern twist. Mom and Dad can personalize with captions, filters, and stickers thanks to the Live Edit mode. From there, with a simple connection to a mobile device, you can print instantly after shooting, share on Facebook and Instagram, and soak in the nostalgia. Oh, and let’s not forget the super high-tech upgrades that Polaroid went ahead and added like full HD video, 20-megapixel CMOS sensor, and the ability to create your very own 15-second GIF recording.
iPhone 8 Plus Digital Camera
If you are a loyal cell phone carrier and want an amazing camera at your fingertips no matter the time or place (without lugging an extra camera bag), the iPhone 8 Plus may be the best camera for your family. With 12-megapixel wide-angle and telephoto cameras, optical image stabilization, digital zoom up to 10x, wide color capture for photos and Live Photos, oh, and that “little extra” called Portrait mode that is too cool, this device does it all. The iPhone 8 Plus also features 4K and 1080p HD video recording, optical image stabilization, digital zoom up to 6x, slo-mo video support and time-lapse video. Want to not only send Grandma and Grandpa amazing pics but also chat with them live? The FaceTime HD camera will bring loved ones into the action with a quick video call.
Kodak WP1 Sport Digital Camera
Durable and affordable, the Kodak WP1 Sport Camera is one of the best cameras for the active, outdoorsy family. The Kodak WP1 Sport Camera is waterproof to 16 feet, shockproof to nearly 4 feet, and dustproof, so it's ideal for everything from hiking and camping trips to snorkeling and pool days. The easy controls and durability make this a camera your family won't have to work hard to use—it can survive wear and tear from whatever adventure may be in store. With 16-megapixel CCD sensor, 2x digital zoom, 720p HD video and a 27mm wide angle, you sacrifice few dollars in the wallet and even fewer features on the camera.
Olympus Tough TG-5 Digital Camera
If the best camera for your family needs to be rugged, we’ve got you covered. Dropping, crushing, dousing, freezing, the Olympus Tough TG-5 can handle whatever a family throws at it, or stay intact if your kid actually throws it! The metal body can endure a drop of 7 feet, withstand 220 pounds of pressure, is waterproof to 50 feet, and can survive temperatures as low as 14° F. It’s no wonder the Olympus Tough TG-5 was named Best Rugged Camera of the Year in 2017 by Imaging Resource. With a 12-megapixel CMOS sensor, ultra HD 4K video, action track sensors, and anti-fog lens glass, Olympus proves that tough can still take beautiful photos. Find yourself wanting to capture the most microscopic of life’s moments? Microscope mode makes macro photography easy because you can capture pics from as close as 1 centimeter from your subject.
Pentax K-50 Digital Camera
For the family who wants the perfect picture every time and doesn’t mind toting around a more substantial and mid-level DSLR, the Pentax K-50 digital camera may be the best camera for you. It delivers with Scene Modes that automatically optimize the camera and exposure settings for a particular scene or subject. It’s no secret that tiny camera batteries can easily get lost in a diaper bag, bottomless purse, or crowded kitchen junk drawer. And if a camera-specific battery goes kaput when Mom or Dad doesn't have a charger on hand, the picture-perfect moment can disappear right before your eyes. To the rescue: The Pentax K-50 eliminates battery drama by conveniently running on not only the lithium-ion battery but also four AA batteries.
GoPro HERO5 Black Digital Camera
If “adventure” if your passion, the best camera for your family might just be the GoPro HERO5 Black. It is ready for whatever action your family has planned, and with the right accessory, you can even get man’s best friend in on the fun! Aside from perks like 4K30/1080p120 video, waterproof to 33 feet, voice control for hands-free operation, and video stabilization capabilities, the GoPro can then move your precious footage from the device to your smartphone where it transforms it into videos with the help of QuikStories. Want to hike that same trail or snowboard that same slope again someday? With GPS capability on the list of features, you can pinpoint the location of a specific photo, so you won't have to wonder in future years which mountain path or snow-covered side these photos were taken.
Nikon D3400 Triple Lens Parent’s Digital Camera Kit
The Nikon D3400 Triple Lens Parent’s Digital Camera Kit is the best camera for the family looking for a one-stop-family-picture-taking-shop. The kit comes equipped with a 24.2-megapixel DSLR camera and 18-55mm lens, super-telephoto 70-300mm lens, and 35mm f/1.8 prime lens. Anxious about taking such precious family moments? Nikon sets you up with their Nikon School Online class which teaches how to photograph kids and pets. The Bluetooth capability allows you to share images via the SnapBridge app and cloud on Nikon Image Space. Last, but certainly not least, the Shutter Huggers monkey is a lifesaver when it comes to getting kids to look and smile at the camera. Bonus: You even get a $30 voucher from online photo lab MPIX.
Panasonic Lumix ZS100 Digital Camera
Equipped with high-speed auto-focusing, this model is perfect for the parents of budding athletes, or kids who just won't sit still. Parents won't have to worry about missing the "perfect" shot of that first home run or the impromptu backyard race, as this camera’s Depth From Defocus (DFD) Auto Focus (AF) technology results in faster AF speeds and a burst shoot speed of 6 frames per second. It also has Wi-Fi mobile device connectivity so you can share pics at the same lightning speed as your junior racer. Bonus: Taking great photos and 4K Ultra HD video of the family is super simple with this 20-megapixel camera because it has a 10x zoom and Post Focus capabilities, which allow you to decide what you want to focus on after the photo has been taken.
Nikon COOLPIX W100 Action Camera
If the best camera for your family is one that can withstand the most brutal of conditions, but you don’t want your camera to look like it’s built for battle, the Nikon COOLPIX W100 digital camera might be what you’re looking for. Don’t let this camera’s compact size and comfortable design fool you; it’s big on durability. The Nikon COOLPIX W100 is waterproof to 33 feet, freezeproof to 14°F, shockproof up to nearly 6 feet high, and dustproof. Not only that, the 13.2-megapixel CMOS image sensor, 3x optical zoom, and 1080p full HD video with stereo sound mean you get great photos and videos. Put this all together, and you’ll find it’s perfect for everything from snorkeling in the ocean and playing in the pool to skiing down mountainsides and ice skating in your local arena. Set up Nikon’s SnapBridge app on your smartphone and, thanks to the camera’s built-in Wi-Fi, NFC, and Bluetooth capabilities, you can quickly and easily share those treasured moments.