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The 5 Best Sport Video Cameras - Black Friday 2021 Reviews

Updated
Best Sport Video Cameras
71 Cameras Tested
  • Store-bought cameras; no cherry-picked units
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Learn more about our approach to product reviews here.

There are many different ways to capture sports, and there are just as many different types of cameras to do it with. When looking for the best camera for sports video, it's important to consider the type of camera you need, whether it's a mountable action camera to get POV shots of the action or a well-equipped mirrorless camera to capture the action from afar. Look out for good stabilization to keep your camera steady and a good autofocus system to keep your subjects in focus. The more frame rate options, the better, especially if you want to incorporate slow-motion footage.

The kind of lens you use with an interchangeable lens camera can drastically affect its overall performance. Using a telephoto lens with a long maximum focal length can help you capture the action from a distance, but that isn't the only point you should consider. Maximum aperture, autofocus performance, stabilization performance, and image and video quality depend on the lens you use, meaning that camera performance can differ significantly depending on your chosen lens and settings. That said, for the sake of consistency and user-friendliness, we currently test mirrorless and DSLR cameras with their standard kit lenses.

We've tested over 60 cameras, and below you'll find our recommendations for the best cameras to buy for sport video. These picks were selected not only based on their overall performance but also their feature set and price. For more options, see our recommendations for the best mirrorless cameras, the best cameras for YouTube, and the best cameras.


  1. Best Action Camera For Sport Video: GoPro HERO10 Black

    8.9
    Action Video
    Body Type
    Action Cam
    Mirrorless
    Yes
    Sensor Size
    Unspecified
    Tested Lens
    Built-In Lens

    Of the action cameras we've tested, the best camera to video sports with is the GoPro HERO10 Black. This premium action camera is perfect for capturing sports thanks to its high frame rate options and digital stabilization feature. It's also advertised to be waterproof to a depth of 33 feet, and you can easily mount it on any number of action camera mounts or objects, including helmet and chest rigs.

    Like the GoPro HERO9 Black, this model has a second front-facing screen that lets you monitor yourself while recording through Live View. It can shoot in several resolutions and frame rate options, from 1080p at up to 240 fps to 4k at up to 120 fps and even 5.3k at up to 60 fps, so you can shoot high-res action video and incorporate smooth slow-motion footage. The camera also does an exceptional job smoothing out camera shake in both 4k and 1080p thanks to its 'HyperSmooth' digital image stabilization feature, though it incurs a noticeable crop on your videos.

    Unfortunately, it doesn't come with too many mounting accessories in the box, and it only has a USB-C port. That means if you want to connect an auxiliary microphone for better audio or connect it to an external display for playback over HDMI, you need to purchase a GoPro 'Media Mod' at an additional cost. Still, this is one of the best cameras for sports that we've tested, thanks to its excellent action video performance and dense feature set.

    See our review

  2. Cheaper Alternative: DJI Osmo Action

    Body Type
    Action Cam
    Mirrorless
    Yes
    Sensor Size
    1/2.3-inch
    Tested Lens
    Built-In Lens

    If you'd prefer something cheaper, take a look at the DJI Osmo Action. Unlike the GoPro HERO10 Black, it's limited to 4k and 1080p resolution, and you can't disable its fisheye lens effect. However, it's considerably cheaper and still comes with a front-facing screen that you can use to monitor yourself live when vlogging. It's advertised to be waterproof to a depth of 11 m, and the camera features a built-in heat sink that's supposed to reduce the risk of overheating. While it doesn't offer as many frame rate options, it can still shoot 4k at up to 60 fps and 1080p at up to 240 fps, which should be enough to suit most people. That said, its overall video quality is worse, and its digital stabilization feature incurs an even greater crop on your videos, though it does an excellent job of reducing camera shake.

    Get the GoPro if you want a wider array of frame rates and resolutions, but if you're looking to save some money on a solid action camera for sports video, the DJI is a good alternative.

    See our review

  3. Best Handheld Sport Video Camera: DJI Pocket 2

    7.5
    Action Video
    Body Type
    Multi-Axis Stabilized Handheld
    Mirrorless
    Yes
    Sensor Size
    1/1.7 inch
    Tested Lens
    Built-In Lens

    Of the cameras we've tested, the best camera to video sports handheld is the DJI Pocket 2. As its name suggests, it's small enough that it could fit into a pocket, and its unique built-in gimbal makes it a great choice for sports vloggers or those who want to film exceptionally smooth handheld footage of fast action. The gimbal uses three-axis stabilization and has several different axes and lock settings, so you can configure it to suit different styles of camera movement.

    The camera uses a slightly larger-than-typical 1/1.7-inch sensor, so the video quality is reasonably good overall, and it's particularly impressive in low light. It offers several frame rate options, including 4k and 1080p video at up to 60 fps, great for sports and fast movement. It also has a slow-motion mode in 1080p that can capture footage at 120 fps or 240 fps and play it back at a slowed down 30 fps. Its autofocus does an excellent job tracking moving subjects, and it has an active tracking setting that can lock onto a particular subject and automatically follow their movement.

    That said, the camera can get very hot while in use, particularly when shooting video in 4k. Its tested battery life in video is decent, though, and you can keep using it while it charges via USB. However, battery performance can vary drastically with settings and usage habits. The camera also doesn't impose any recording time limit, which is great for longer shooting sessions. All in all, this is one of the best cameras for sports, thanks to its unique gimbal design.

    See our review

  4. Best Mirrorless Camera For Sport Video: Fujifilm X-T4

    7.3
    Action Video
    Body Type
    DSLR
    Mirrorless
    Yes
    Sensor Size
    APS-C
    Tested Lens
    FUJINON XF 18-55mm F2.8-4 R OIS

    If you'd prefer a dedicated stills and video camera well-suited to filming fast action and sports, the Fujifilm X-T4 is the best mirrorless camera we've tested for video sports. This flagship crop-sensor mirrorless model feels very well-built and is relatively portable, making it easier to carry around for long shooting days. It has a fully articulated screen to help you shoot from different angles and a full array of inputs and outputs, including a microphone jack if you want to connect an external mic for better audio.

    It offers several frame rate options, as it can record 4k and FHD video at up to 60 fps. It also has a high-speed recording mode in FHD that lets you capture fast action at 120 fps or 240 fps for slow-motion playback. Its internal recording capability is also excellent, so it can output high-quality video files if you want more control over editing. Its overall video quality is impressive, particularly when shooting in brighter lighting conditions. It also has a great autofocus system that's remarkably effective at tracking moving subjects.

    Unfortunately, it's not the most comfortable to use, and its controls may take some getting used to if you're not used to having dedicated dials for camera settings. It's also, of course, heavier and bulkier than a portable action camera would be. On the upside, it has in-body image stabilization to smooth out camera shake when shooting without a tripod. All in all, if you're looking for a hybrid stills/video camera that can capture fast action and sports, this is a great mirrorless option.

    See our review

  5. Cheaper Alternative: Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III

    Body Type
    DSLR
    Mirrorless
    Yes
    Sensor Size
    4/3
    Tested Lens
    Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-45mm f/4.0 PRO

    If you want something more affordable, take a look at the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III. Its Micro Four Thirds sensor is smaller than the APS-C sensor on the Fujifilm X-T4, so it doesn't perform as well in low light, but it's notably cheaper and even more portable. Although the smaller sensor incurs a 2x crop when shooting video, it's still a very capable video camera that delivers great 4k video quality with relatively little visual noise. It also offers many frame rates to choose from, including 4k at 30 fps and 1080p at up to 60 fps, as well as a slow-motion mode that captures 1080p footage at 120 fps with the option to slow it down to 60 fps, 50 fps, 30 fps, 25 fps, or 24 fps, though this mode incurs an additional crop. Its autofocus system does an excellent job of tracking moving subjects in videos as well. Unfortunately, its battery performance is unremarkable, and you can't keep using it while it charges. That said, battery life can also vary with settings and usage habits.

    Get the Fujifilm if you want more frame rate options and better low-light performance, but if you want something a little cheaper, the Olympus is a great alternative.

    See our review

Notable Mentions

  • AKASO V50X: The AKASO V50X is a solid cheap action camera with excellent stabilization performance. However, it doesn't have as many frame rate options as the DJI Osmo Action. See our review
  • Canon EOS R6: The Canon EOS R6 is an excellent full-frame mirrorless camera. Like the Fujifilm X-T4, it can record 4k video at up to 60 fps and has in-body image stabilization, but it's notably bulkier and more expensive. See our review
  • GoPro HERO9 Black: The GoPro HERO9 Black is the predecessor to the GoPro HERO10 Black and performs very similarly overall. However, it has fewer frame rate options and performs slightly worse in low light. See our review
  • Sony α7 III: The Sony a7 III is an excellent all-around mirrorless camera with better noise handling capability than the Fujifilm X-T4. It lacks a fully-articulated screen, is less portable, and does a worse job of stabilizing video. See our review
  • Sony α6600: The Sony a6600 is a good mirrorless camera for capturing sports thanks to its in-body image stabilization and autofocus system. It doesn't perform as well all-around as the Fujifilm X-T4, and its frame rate options are more limited. See our review
  • Sony α6400: The Sony a6400 is a good mirrorless option with a better autofocus system than the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III. It lacks in-body image stabilization. See our review

Recent Updates

  1. Nov 15, 2021: Replaced the GoPro HERO9 Black with the GoPro HERO10 Black as 'Best Action Camera For Sport Video' and added the GoPro HERO9 to Notable Mentions.

  2. Oct 25, 2021: Verified accuracy of picks; no change to recommendations.

  3. Oct 04, 2021: Updated article for accuracy and clarity.

  4. Sep 13, 2021: Reviewed picks for accuracy; no change to recommendations.

All Reviews

Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best sport video cameras for most people to buy, according to their needs. We factor in the price, feedback from our visitors, and availability (no cameras that are difficult to find or almost out of stock in the US).

If you would like to choose for yourself, here's the list of all our camera reviews. Be careful not to get caught up in the details. There is no single perfect camera. Personal taste, preference, and shooting habits will matter more in your selection.

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