Sports photography can be challenging but is a lot of fun at the same time. There is so much happening, and trying to keep up with the action is half the challenge. That’s where the best camcorder for sports will allow you to capture or record all those memorable moments.
Finding high-quality equipment to record sports will ensure your shots look professional. Whether you’re filming professional athletes or recording your kids skating in the park, you need a quality camcorder.
There is a massive variety in the market, and finding the best camcorders for sports can be challenging. That’s why we decide to review the best options in the market so that you can record your favorite sports with ease. The good news is that if you know what to look for and what you will be using the camera for, you will have no problems finding a quality sports camcorder.
To help you pick the best camcorder for sports, check out our reviews of the best options in the market today. Keep reading, and you will find the best value camcorder, best budget camcorder, best all-purpose camcorder, the best premium video sports camcorder, and more. Or jump straight to our number 1 pick here.
Table of Contents
- What Should You Look for in the Best Camcorder for Sports?
- Here’s How We Have Determined the Best Camcorder for Sports
- #1: Canon VIXIA R800 Video Camcorder (Best for Sports)
- #2: Panasonic V770K Full HD Camcorder for Sport (Best All-Purpose)
- #3: Panasonic W580K Full HD Camcorder (Best for Your Budget)
- #4: Sony 4K HD Video Camcorder (Best Premium Product)
- #5: Panasonic 4K HD Video Camcorder (Best Premium Product)
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Conclusion: Your Best Camcorder for Sports
What Should You Look for in the Best Camcorder for Sports?
Camcorders for sports need to have specific features that allow you to record all the action conveniently and cleanly. You must consider several factors before buying one, and we will highlight the criteria you should look for in the best sports camcorders. Here’s what you should be looking for:
Criteria #1 – The Video Quality
When you’re trying to catch epic moments of your favorite sports on the camcorder, the video quality is the most important factor. Numerous camcorders can record 4K quality videos. Unfortunately, camcorders that record in 4K can be expensive, but that’s not an issue as you can opt for those that can record in 1080p at least.
Criteria #2 – The Battery Life and Charger
Nobody wants to run out of battery in the middle of an exciting game. Regardless of how great the camcorder is, you need one that has supportive battery life. Most sports camcorders have Li-ion batteries, and they can last for up to two or three hours when recording. You can get additional batteries for emergencies if you will be shooting for long periods.
Criteria #3 – Checkout the LCD
Most sports camcorders come with a 3-inch LCD, but there are larger versions available as well. You should always opt for camcorders with an LCD as they allow you to view the shots you are recording and get the angles right. Therefore, the best choice would be to go for camcorders with high-resolution and bright LCDs.
Here’s How We Have Determined the Best Camcorder for Sports
Even with hundreds of options in the market, we know how hard it is to find the best camcorder for sports. However, don’t let that stop you because you have come to the right place if that’s what you have been searching for. Our team has spent hours of time on research to pick the best options and reviewed them to ensure they fit the necessary criteria.
You won’t have any problems in shooting and recording sports with these sports camcorders as they are designed specifically for that purpose. Generally, recording sporting events is challenging, even though it may seem simple. The action is high-octane and fast, so you can miss an important event in the blink of an eye. That’s where you need the best camcorders for sports, and here are our top picks.
#1: Canon VIXIA R800 Video Camcorder (Best for Sports)
The VIXIA R800 Camcorder offers the best value for recording sports. It can be used for many situations, whether you’re recording recitals, sports events, or even home videos. This camcorder has an advanced 57x zoom range, which lets you get close-up shots of your favorite athletes and even shoot from all the way back at any stadium or auditorium.
The Super Range O.I.S ensures you will get stable images at focal lengths that are longer. You can record HD videos separately and store them in SD cards in the MP4 format for easier playback on any device. The R800 uses backlight correction with Highlight Priority mode to ensure that you get bright images.
The video signals coming in will be analyzed by backlight correction, to identify the subject in the frame, exposing it rather than giving you a background that has been overexposed. That means you will get clear images even if the angle of the sun is behind the subject.
Reason #1 to Choose this Product: 3.28MP Full HD CMOS Image Sensor
The Canon VIXIA has a CMOS Image Sensor with Full HD 3.28MP, supporting videos of 1920 x 1080 resolutions. The HD CMOS high-resolution sensor from Canon is extra sensitive and offers lifelike videos in Full HD with natural colors in environments with limited light. Every frame will be clear thanks to the on-chip feature for noise reduction, ensuring that your videos and photos will be vivid when you’re playing it back on big screen TVs.
Reason #2 to Choose this Product: Powerful 57x Advanced Zoom
The advanced 57x zoom range is very powerful and impressive, ensuring you will easily handle shooting videos from a distance. You can also shoot dynamic variety videos since you won’t face any disruptions while recording the action. The advanced zoom range can be effective in any situation, whether you are shooting formal ceremonies, sporting action, or family videos.
The 32.5mm to 35mm focal length range offers excellent flexibility while shooting, and the best part is that you can use settings for zoom speeds that are continually variable. It allows you to have more creative control and conveniently shoot videos with 15 zoom levels and three fixed speeds.
It’s difficult to think of any feature that the Canon VIXIA doesn’t have, and that’s why it is the perfect camcorder for people looking to record and film any sport.
#2: Panasonic V770K Full HD Camcorder for Sport (Best All-Purpose)
The Panasonic V770K with full HD is our best all-purpose camcorder. You can pair it with your mobile device or tablet and simultaneously record from two camera angles. The V770K also has a 29.5 to 612 mm focal length range with an optical zoom lens for a 20x range.
That ensures you get excellent telephotos when zooming in, and wide-angle shots when zooming out. You can easily record slow-motion footage at 120 fps in Full HD and increase the frame rate to 240 fps with interpolation in-camera.
The Leica Dicomar lens comes with the camera offering four optical groups separately, and an f/1.8 maximum aperture. That ensures image vibration is reduced and you get steadier footage when shooting handheld. The HYBRID O.I.S + system from Panasonic combines digital and optical image stabilization with a 5-axis correction.
The settings can be adjusted, which lets you select the most appropriate stabilization mode when recording sporting events. From Normal for standard handheld shooting to OFF for shooting on a tripod, and even strong for times when you must record fast-action and the camera is shaking.
The built-in Wi-Fi on the V770K helps you in capturing videos from the camera on your smartphone and using a second camera angle. That allows you to use the Image App from Panasonic to preview live images on your phone and adjust settings for the camera.
You can also upload videos and photos on social media platforms directly with an internet connection. The camera can also be used for surveillance as it has the function to act as a Baby Monitor.
#3: Panasonic W580K Full HD Camcorder (Best for Your Budget)
The Panasonic W580K combines innovative features and intuitive controls while bringing creativity and fun to your handheld camcorders but still offering high-quality footage. The best feature is the Wireless Multi-Camera function, which lets you record from two different camera angles with windows of picture-in-picture.
You either connect a mobile device with Wi-Fi to the camcorder or use the built-in secondary camera on the LCD screen.
The HDR Movie mode is excellent at blocking shadows and preventing highlights that are blown out. The camcorder has a wide-angle 28mm lens offering an intelligent zoom of 90x range and a large optical 50x range, so you are right on top of the action. The Level Shot and image stabilization 5-axis functions help in producing level, clear, and stable footage during handheld shooting.
The W580K Full HD Camcorder also has Wi-Fi connectivity built-in, meaning you can pair it with a device compatible with it. You can also use the Image App from Panasonic to remotely control the camcorder and view all your videos and photos. And directly upload your content on social media and broadcast on USTREAM video services in real-time at 1080p to share the action with everyone around the world.
You can also use the camcorder to check on your baby through the Baby Monitor feature by connecting it with your internet network at home. You can get notifications when there are voices in the room or it detects the baby crying, while you can use your smartphone to talk to your baby.
The Sony 4K HD is a Handycam camcorder that is palm-sized and combines an image sensor of high sensitivity with an optical zoom lens from Zeiss with a 20x range for producing high-quality and crisp video in 4K UHD.
You can easily capture 4K UHD videos at 24 or 30 fps thanks to the image sensor from EXMOR R CMOS, which uses the XVAC S codec from Sony and has 1.6x larger pixels than older models, helping deliver improved performance in all environments, especially in low-light.
It features the image stabilization system from Sony, which is the Balance Balance Optical SteadyShot. It helps in producing stable and smooth videos in any zoom range. The built-in microphone ensures lower noise, and you get enhanced accuracy and speed during autofocus. you can also shoot slow-motion footage in high-resolution thanks to the high-speed recording mode that lets you record at 120 fps 1080p.
You can monitor your footage easily on the Xtra fine 3-inch touchscreen LCD with a 921K dot display resolution, or the 1,555K dot OLED EVF high-resolution 0.24-inch display. There is also an HDMI output port so you can playback the action on large screens, by connective the HDTV to an LED TV.
There’s also an option for trimming select portions of your image frames or 4K videos to ensure you get Full HD quality on the screen.
It offers remote control and excellent connectivity as it is NFC enabled and has built-in Wi-Fi, ensuring you can control the camcorder with your tablet or smartphone, or transfer files to your phone or laptop and stream the action live from your camcorder onto Ustream.
The Panasonic 4K cinema-like video camera camcorder makes our list as the best premium sports camera. It combines in-camera editing with 4K video recording in Ultra HD, along with creative effects with a powerful and straightforward operation that allows users to capture stunning videos in Full HD and 4K UHD capabilities.
The video camcorder uses mobile devices connected by Wi-Fi or the LCD screen that has a built-in secondary camera that can flip out to support two video feeds of picture-in-picture. That way you can record multiple viewpoints and angles at the same time and offer a unique experience when recording sports videos.
The Panasonic 4K camcorder also has a backside-illuminated (BSI) 1/2.3-inch MOS sensor and an effective resolution of 8.29 megapixels. It works with the Crystal Engine 4K image processor that can support 1080p videos at 60 fps and 4K UHD videos at 24/30 fps. It can take interpolated stills at 25.9 megapixels and allows you to use a 4K Photo Mode to extract those stills straight from the 4K video frame.
It has other features like an HDR movie mode, cinema-life effects built-in, and 4K in-camera editing tools, which let you stabilize, crop, track, pan, and zoom your 4K videos in-camera.
The lens from Leica Dicomar has a 35mm focal length, which goes down to 30.8mm at wide angles, and offers an optical zoom of 20x range. It also has an intelligent zoom that has a 25x range when recording in 4K and a 40x range when recording in Full HD.
It also has the HYBRID O.I.S + from Panasonic, which minimizes image vibration and affords steadier footage during handheld shooting. It also has a combined digital image and optical stabilization system with 5-axis correction, which works with the Level Shot Function from Panasonic and helps in producing more stable, level, and clearer footage.
Frequently Asked Questions
We understand that you may have some questions about the best camcorders for sports, which is why we have shared some of the most frequently asked questions. We are confident these questions will provide you with the necessary knowledge about sports camcorders for filming sports. Here are our top picks:
How Can I Capture the Action in Sports with a Camcorder?
Capturing the best moments in a game with a camcorder can be challenging. If you want to record all the actions, you will need to learn the possible movement of the players. You must be aware of everything that is going on to position yourself in the best spot to capture all the action on your camcorder.
What’s the Best Position for Sports Photography or Videography?
The position where you shoot and record matters a lot in sports photography or videography. There are designated areas where photographers can stay for international sports. However, it also depends on the kind of shot you plan on taking, whether it will be widescreen shots or close-ups.
How Long Can Sports Camcorders Record the Action?
In general, if your sports camcorders are equipped with an A or AA standard Li-ion battery, you will have at least two hours of continuous recording in high resolution. If you plan on recording the entire match or game, you’ll need to carry extra batteries with you for when the camcorder dies on you.
Conclusion: Your Best Camcorder for Sports
Now that have we discussed all the main points you should know before purchasing the best camcorder for sports. We know that you want nothing but the top choices on the market, and our confidence in our selections. Still, if we were to rank them and give you an unbiased verdict, you can find our top choices below.
If you want a sports camcorder that offers you the best value for recording sports, go with the Canon VIXIA R800.
The VIXIA is exceptional in shooting in various environments and allows you to record anything whether it is sporting events, home videos, weddings, or recitals. It features an advanced zoom of 57x, which is excellent at enabling you to take close-up shots of any subject. You can even shoot from the very back of an auditorium or stadium.
If you want the best all-purpose camcorder for shooting sports, get the Panasonic V770K Full HD.
You can pair your smartphone with the camcorder and record simultaneously from two different angles. It also has an optical zoom lens with 20x and an equivalent focal length of 29.5 to 612mm, allowing you to get wide-angle shots if you zoom out.
If you need a budget-friendly sports camcorder, you should get the Panasonic W580K Full HD.
The camcorder comes with intuitive controls and innovative features that enable you to get creative and have a lot of fun, during shooting. On top of that, you will get exceptional quality recordings from this handheld camcorder.
Finding the best camcorders for sports shouldn’t be complicated, but in today’s market, you have hundreds of choices and even the best of us can struggle sometimes. It took us a while to compile this list and review all the options, but we are confident that you won’t regret buying any of these camcorders for shooting sporting events and other functions.