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Best Camcorders for Still Pictures

Updated on July 17, 2018
RuthCoffee profile image

I've been researching and writing about consumer electronics for over 12 years.

Can a Camcorder with Digital Camera Take Good Still Pictures?

Many camcorders on the market are capable of taking still photos in addition to recording video footage. The question that many consumers have however is whether or not these devices can do double duty well enough so that they can purchase a camcorder and avoid buying a stand-alone digital camera in addition or at least leave the camera at home when taking the camcorder along.

The answer to this depends partially upon the camcorder selected and the level of expectation that the user has related to their still photography. I will give you some tips for choosing a camcorder with a digital camera and make some recommendations.

The Options

If you're on a budget and want both a camcorder for recording footage and the ability to capture nice still images there are two options.

  • Purchase a separate camcorder and digital camera. If your still image photography needs are basic this option may still be a good one based on your budget. Basic point and shoot digital cameras can range from $100 to $300. Even several of the cameras priced at $100 offer good quality images and they possess more features than many camcorders do for still images. If your budget is larger, of course, even better cameras are available. If you truly just want one device for convenience sake and filming is your first priority, then it is possible to get a good camcorder with a digital camera that can produce some very reasonable still images as long as you won't be enlarging them.

Below you will find some of the best camcorders for still pictures.

A Few Things To Consider When Choosing a Camcorder to Take Still Pictures

Here are just a few tips on things to consider when trying to choose the best camcorder for still pictures as well as video footage.

Pixels. I recommend a minimum of 2-3 effective pixels for still images. If you are pretty good with a camera this can produce a reasonable 4x6 printed image. On screen images will generally look even better than the prints. Lens Quality. For instance, a Carl Zeiss lens is well regarded. The sensor. Larger and more is always better. Optical image stabilization. A steady camera provides a clear picture. Low noise and good color can also be important factors. Look for camera features like built-in flash, autofocus, and optical zoom during still photography, and scene modes. Some may even include a burst mode. Simultaneous image capture. While a camcorder may allow you to capture both video and still images, not all of them allow you to do both at the same time. Some do however. If this is important to you, look for this capability. Compatible connections. Be sure you know how you will be able to download, view, or print your still images. Reminders. Learning how to capture good still pictures is important. Using a tripod can be useful for both filming and still photography. Also remember that sticking with smaller sizes when you choose to print can assure better quality if resolution is limited.

A Good Choice From Panasonic

Panasonic HDC-HS900K 3 MOS 220GB HDD 3D Compatible Camcorder (Black)
Panasonic HDC-HS900K 3 MOS 220GB HDD 3D Compatible Camcorder (Black)

Introduced in late 2011, this video camera is among the best of 2012. Panasonic's HS900k can record both 2D and 3D images when paired with an optional 3D lens. It offers a 220GB hard drive and a memory card slot for storing your video and still images. It has a F1.5-F2.8 Leica Dicomar 35mm wide angle lens, this in combination with its noise reduction system can gather more light and produce better low light images. Its 3 sensor configuration also contributes to brighter, more detailed results with better color reproduction.

This video camera also has Intelligent Resolution technology which uses edge detection for greater clarity and improved sharpness, hybrid Optical Image Stabilization and Intelligent 20x zoom. Users can record 1080/60p video or use the 24p cinema mode. Audio is superb with 5.1 ch Surround Sound, a zoom mic, and wind noise cancellation.

Another thing that set this camcorder apart is its good still image capture abilities. It produces 14.2 megapixel still images and can simultaneously record video and 13.3 megapixel still images. It offers 11 scene modes as well as a soft skin and Tele-Macro mode.


Panasonic HDC HS900 Review

Video Review of the Sony HDRXR260V

Photo Credits

Introduction: Joe Shlabotnik.

The Options: Jorritf.

A Few Things to Consider: DuShaun.

Let Us Know You Stopped By!

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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      yes good information at a glance

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Yes, indeed!

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Great options here for camcorders that are good for still pictures. Thumbs up!

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Really great lens! Blessed by a Squidoo Angel on 6/15/2011. Have a great day!

    • UKGhostwriter profile image


      7 years ago

      excellent lens - great resource

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      That's a nice lens about cam coder but from different perspective normally over looked

    • Michey LM profile image

      Michey LM 

      7 years ago

      Great lens, I like the combination of Camcorders with Digital Camera.


    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Cool tips for some of the cool gadgets.

    • Jhangora LM profile image

      Jhangora LM 

      8 years ago

      Really cool blog with solid advise on cameras. Thanx for sharing the tips.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      thanks for the reviews!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Great Lens... Based on the information on this lens, i returned the camcorders i bought for the right one,, thanks,, check out my lens on Super Zoom Digital Cameras

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I bought a Flip last year and just love it! 5* lens.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Great lens. Thanks! I'm in the market for a camcorder and I now know to keep this in mind when I shop.

    • TonyPayne profile image

      Tony Payne 

      9 years ago from Southampton, UK

      Very nice lens, 5***** Debbie and I bought a Panasonic HD Camcorder last year, and although it takes great video, I thought the stills were 2mp. I was so disappointed to find it was more like .2mp :( The photos looked nice and clear on the camcorder screen, but on the computer they are too tiny to use for anything. I don't know why any modern camera would have such a low MP.

    • TreasuresBrenda profile image

      Treasures By Brenda 

      9 years ago from Canada

      Nicely done shopping lens; blessed by an Angel.

    • hempnecklace profile image


      9 years ago

      You are cordially invited to join my shopping group if you havn't done so already.

      My Squidoo Shopping Group

      Click here To join the shopping group.

      thank you

      David Depape

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      Hey, you got an really great site, thanks a lot for some great info! I have also similar Optical Zoom Camcorder blog with some tips on using the camcorders, check it out if you want :)


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