So your young one wants to start filming some videos? Perhaps create their own rendition of Frozen? How about film themselves dancing to their favorite soundtrack (that they’ve played 20 times a day for the past week, mind you)? There are specific options for video cameras that are great for kids of every age.
It’s never too early to start them out! Who knows…you may have the next Spielberg on your hands, let alone will be able to capture some timeless memories you can show them when they’re older. We’ve gathered some critical information and have chosen our top best picks of video cameras for kids. What the actual best is for you depends on a few factors you need to take into consideration. Let’s investigate.
Our advice when choosing a video camera for kids
- What type of video camera are you particularly thinking about? Camcorders? A pocket camera? Perhaps a more interactive toy-type of camera?
- Keep it cheap. We like to go by the rule of: assume it will break!
- Look for a camera that isn’t too big for your children (easy grip!)
- Consider other features you may want such as memory storage, battery life, etc.
When it comes to the type of video camera your child may want, it can depend on a few factors: Have they asked for a particular kind? Which do you see being easier for them to handle? Another important factor is their age: if they are reaching teenage years, I don’t think they’d want to be seen with anything resembling a toy, period! On the other hand, a toy-type of camera could be the perfect fit for a younger child. We’ve provided our recommendations for all types in case they pertain to you.
Keeping it cheap can be helpful for numerous reasons, but our number one rule of assuming it will break is critical, regardless of how confident you are in their handling of it. This will also help you keep a peace of mind while they’re out and about using it by themselves or with friends — no need to worry or constantly supervise their activities.
Video camcorder size is very important in our opinion. Those little hands need to be able to conveniently hold onto their device to use it properly, let alone be safe in decreasing the chances of dropping it. Something like a DSLR camera or even hefty camcorder will not cut it.
You can also take any additional features of the video camera into consideration: Memory capacity, recording\battery time, inclusion of a screen, lighting, or even accessories such as cases or straps that are compatible with the camera. What about waterproof? Will you be going on vacations at the beach, water park or lake?
Video quality can also be of concern to some, as seeing 1080p quality cameras are becoming more and more the norm nowadays. Whether that is important for your children’s cameras is up to you.
Your budget and preferred type of camera
Below is a list of recommended video cameras for kids. For convenience purposes, we’ve divided it into type and also sort them from lowest to highest price. Provided are links to Amazon to read further reviews and additional features of the cameras. Read on to get some in-depth info about each model.
Toy-type Video Cameras
- VTech Kidizoom Camera Connect
- MoviePix Kids Digital Video Recorder
- Fisher-Price Kid-Tough See Yourself Camera
Digital Video Cameras and Camcorders
- Zoom Q2HD Handy HD Video Recorder
- Flip Ultra Video Camera
- Nikon COOLPIX S31 Digital Camera
- Samsung F90 Camcorder
Our top best video camera picks for kids
We provide a bit of everything in terms of camera type, age recommendation and overall feature quality. Remember to take into consideration the type, price, and additional features you’re looking for. Let us know which camera you end up choosing!
Toy-type Video Cameras
VTech Kidizoom Camera Connect
Our list kicks off with a very budget-friendly toy-type of video camera for kids. The Kidizoom is very popular among parents and features a 1.3 megapixel camera with 4 times digital zoom. The 1.8″ screen on the back is suffient for young ones and has a very user-friendly navigation system. The video quality isn’t amazing HD, but it gets the job done for younger kids who want to film for fun and love toys. You can also use a micro SD for some more memory.
Some would say it is more of a digital camera (can store up to 800 photos), but having the ability to record video helps it make our list. It comes with a hand strap for some protection. A huge plus with the VTech Kidizoom is the ability to add silly effects to the photos. Kids have fun and get a great laugh from doing so. It also has some voice-changing effects. You aren’t getting crazy studio-quality resolution here but it’s great for younger ones who want to have some fun, and only around $40 retail at that.
Recommended ages: 3+
- 1.3 megapixel camera
- Record short video movies
- 4x digital zoom
- 5 voice-changing effects
- 3 fun games built-in
- Animation maker software for download
- 128MB internal memory (800 pictures)
- USB cable included
MoviePix Kids Digital Video Recorder
Here’s a more expensive but higher-quality video camera for kids in the toy-type category. We particularly love the look of it: a mixture of a digital camcorder and kids-looking toy. Comes in blue or red and features a video recording option along with digital camera for photographs at 3.1 megapixels (pretty dang high for a kids camera!). The 1.5″ screen on the side is a plus, let alone the built-in SD slot and 4x digital zoom available.
This is a lot safer to go with as opposed to a real camcorder if your child is still within their younger ages (6-7 and below). The lighting conditions of the MoviePix Recorder aren’t too flexible with this — best used outside in the bright sun. If you’re concerned with overall quality scroll down to our digital camcorder list, otherwise this is feasible for younger children and is a lot cheaper than most cameras.
Age recommendation: 3-7
- 1.5″ screen
- 3.1 megapixel digital camera
- Built-in SD slot
- 4x Digital Zoom
- TV Out plug
- 1.1 sensor resolution
Fisher-Price Kid-Tough See Yourself Camera
The Kid-Tough is one of the higher-end toy-types of video cameras for kids. The software it comes with is especially nifty and easy-to-use, add some effects. Features a colored screen, 256 MB on-board memory (SD slot is built-in for expansion) and 4 times digital zoom. This is especially great for kids because it has been reviewed by many to survive a lot of drops.
It is battery powered but it doesn’t come with a USB or SD card, you’ll have to buy those separately. The video picture is actually quite high in terms of quality with the Fisher Price See-Yourself, same with the audio. This will be feasible for a younger child and is an overall great camera. This is by far the best toy-type video camera and we recommend grabbing this one if it is within your budget. Comes in either black or pink.
Recommended ages: 3-7
- Rotating lens for selfies!
- 4x digital zoom
- 1.8 TFT lens
- 256 on-board memory
- SD card expansion (sold separately)
- Software included is great for special effects
- Battery powered (AA)
- Works best on PC
Digital Video Cameras and Camcorders
Zoom Q2HD Handy HD Video Recorder
This is a good camera because it is a pocket camera and can easily fit into their hands. What’s nifty about the Zoom Q2HD is it has a built-in condenser microphone to capture higher quality audio than pretty much all cameras we’ve listed. The video resolution is also top notch; 1080p at 30fps! You do have the option to record in lower resolutions which will save some battery time. These handle two AA batteries, so it is easy to replace if they’ve drained the battery (as opposed to taking a time out from filming and charging, although you have that option as well). For memory, you can also insert up to 64GB SDXC card, a ton of memory and more than enough — this increases record time (up to 2 hours with this one).
It’s a bit more tricky to work the Zoom Q2HD since there’s some features to get used to and it’s more of a regular video camera, which is why we’ve recommended it for relatively higher ages. However, you can merely teach them how to record and stop and you should be fine. They will need some help uploading their films into the computer after they’re done.
Recommended ages: 9+
- Small and easy to handle for children
- Built-in condenser microphone for high quality audio
- Video resoltuion up to 1080p!
- Compatible with additiona memory: 64GB SDXC
- USB 2.0, mini-HDMI and 1/8″ connectors
- Powered by two AA batteries, USB or an AC adapter
Flip Ultra Video Camera
Here’s another smaller camera and it is a bit more expensive than the Q2 but higher in quality. The Ultra is great in terms of being easy-to-use. Not only is it small in size and can fit easily in their hands, but it features a one-touch recording as well as digital zoom. It has a 2″ LCD screen for playback, although that may get tricky depending your kid’s age. Powered by AA batteries so it’s also convenient for switching in and out power.
It’s only VGA-quality (lower than HD, but still feasible), but the Flip Ultra can last 2 hours of recording time. Once it’s time to upload to the computer, the flip-out USB is very easy to use and can get the clips onto the computer in minutes. Also comes in different colors, somethign all young one find important!
Age recommendation: 8+
- Easy-to-use in terms of size and recording
- 120 minutes of VGA-quality with no additional memory cards
- Flip-out USB arm for Mac or PC sharing
- FlipShare software to edit videos
- 2″ LCD screen (anti-glare)
- AA battery but also compatible with Flip Video Battery Pack (rechargeable but sold separately)
Nikon COOLPIX S31 Digital Camera
There are quite a few models of Nikon’s COOLPIX cameras, but after some research and consensus searching the S31 has won. Comes in quite a few colors (blue, black, pink, white and yellow), but the biggest kicker of them is that this one is waterproof and shockproof! Great for beach, lake or any type of vacation days that your kids will be filming near water. Not to mention it being shockproof helps give some extra protection if they were to drop it.
The Nikon COOLPIX S31 also allows for 720p HD video recording with a nice built-in mic for decent quality audio. The reviews have been very high with this video camera, especially because it can take pictures as well as videos, not to mention being waterproof (even if you’re not at an environment with water, they somehow always find some!). This is our favorite budget-friendly camera that is waterproof and all-around most safe for kids.
Recommended ages: 7+
- Waterproof and shockproof
- Oversized buttons for easy handling
- 2.7″ LCD screen
- 720p HD video qualitiy
- Built-in microphone
- Comes in multiple colors
- In-camera slideshow
Samsung F90 Camcorder
Here’s a very budget-friendly video camera, and we like this one because it is the traditional camcorder with strap for their hands. If your child can handle it and want a more standard-looking and functioning video camera, this is a great one to look at. With many zoom features, 720p HD video quality as well as being able to take pictures at 5 megapixels each, it is solid for the price.
The Samsung F90 comes in black or white, and is great for low light conditions if your child will ever be filming at night. The lens is especially tailored for this. It also has some solid software that comes with it to edit the video clips with your young one together (add music, create slideshows, etc!)
Recommended ages: 10+
- 52x optical zoom
- 720pHD video quality
- Take photographs at 5 megapixel quality
- One-touch sharing button for uploads
- Great for low light conditions
- 2.7″ LCD screen
- Comes with battery pack (rechargeable)
- HDMI output for HDTV playback
The conclusion of best video camera for kids
Although it does end up depending on quite a few factors that tailor to your own children’s needs, finding a video camera for your child can take some sifting through. In terms of a toy-type of video camera that is best for younger children within the ages of 3-7, we love the Fisher Price See-Yourself Camera, being very stable with drops, lens that rotates for self-filming as well as great software included for effect-adding and easy editing.
If you want to take a step up and get your child a better-quality camera that isn’t toy-like, we have heard so many reviews of the Nikon COOLPIX S31 that it’s hard to choose any other unless you want something smaller in size or that shoots in 1080p. It’s also waterproof which is only a plus, even if you aren’t planning on being near water as children have a tendency to attract threats to gadgets!
If you’re looking for a more advanced camera that you think your child can handle, check out our best small HD video camera review for some more options. Let us know which camera you currently own/have chosen!