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Best pen camera 2018 – [Buyer’s Guide]Last Updated July 1, 2018
Best pen camera of 2018
Below you can find 3 reviews of the best pen camera to buy in 2018, which I have picked after the deep market research. We’ve narrowed down our options based on the customer feedback (read positive reviews), functionality, material and size. In other words, we’ve put all fundamentals into consideration to come up with a comprehensive list that suits various needs.
Many brands have introduced pen camera on the market. These brands have resulted in a variety for the user. These require that the consumers be well aware of what they are buying so as to make the best choice. I’ve based my selection methodology on customer feedback, the size, functionality, and budget to meet various demands.
Test Results and Ratings
№1 – FabQuality 1080p HD Hidden Camera Pen BUNDLE 16GB SD Micro Card + USB card Reader + 7 INK FILLS + updated battery + USB Plug! – Record Executive Multifunction DVR. Perfect Gift Easy to Use
Why did this pen camera win the first place?
I was completely satisfied with the price. Its counterparts in this price range are way worse. I really enjoy the design. It is compact, comfortable and reliable. And it looks amazing! The product is very strong. Its material is stable and doesn’t crack. I don’t know anything about other models from this brand, but I am fully satisfied with this product.
Why did this pen camera come in second place?
The material is pretty strong and easy to wash if needed. The design quality is top notch and the color is nice. I recommend you to consider buying this model, it definitely worth its money. I really liked it. It is amazing in every aspect. It did even exceed my expectations for a bit, considering the affordable price.
№3 – Spy Camera LTMADE 1296P 32G Hidden Camera Pen OV4689 Full Real 2K Low Illumination 1080P Pen Camera Multfunction Pen DVR Cam
Why did this pen camera take third place?
I hope that the good reputation of the manufacturer will guarantee a long-term work. I liked the design. We’ve been using it for 2 months and it still looks like brand new. This price is appropriate since the product is very well built. It doesn’t squeaks nor bents. Looks great in my apartment.
pen camera Buyer’s Guide
Here’s how the two technologies compare.
Fast burst modes: Canon’s new EOS M50 allows you to capture frames per second, and 7.fps in servo autofocus mode, which means it’ll be adjusting focus during those bursts. Such speed is great for capturing sports and action, like the moment a baseball player’s bat connects with a baseball.
Size & Weight
Nikon D3400, for example, is a rather bulky inches deep before you put the lens on the front. With the 18-55mm kit lens, the camera weighs about 1.pounds.
A mirrorless camera body can be smaller than a DSLR, with simpler construction. The Sony A6300 has a body just 1.inches thick and weighs 1.7pounds with its 16-50mm kit lens.
You can carry a mirrorless camera more easily and fit more gear, such as extra lenses, into a camera bag.
DSLRs used to have the advantage here, because they use a technology called phase detection, which quickly measures the convergence of two beams of light. Mirrorless cameras were restricted to a technology called contrast detection, which uses the image sensor to detect the highest contrast, which coincides with focus. Contrast detection is slower — especially in low light — than phase detection.
This is no longer the case, though, as mirrorless cameras now have both phase and contrast detection sensors built into the image sensor, and can use both to refine their autofocus. The Sony a6300, for instance, has 42phase detection autofocus points its image sensor, while the Nikon D3400 has 1phase-detection sensors in its separate AF sensor, and uses the entire image sensor for contrast detection.
In-camera editing and filters:
You don’t have to wait until you transfer your images on to your computer to edit them or add filters. Many advanced cameras let you take the photos you’ve shot and then crop them, change the tone or color, and even add artistic, illustration-like filters. Plus, many filters and changes are often non-destructive, meaning that the camera will create a copy so that the original isn’t altered.
Almost all digital cameras can connect wirelessly with mobile devices via Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and NFC. In this mode, you can transfer images to your phone. Additionally, most also let you operate the camera remotely, letting you adjust a variety of exposure settings and controls, including the ability to fire the photo, and switch on video capture.
Generally, DSLRs offer longer battery life, as they can shoot without using the LCD screen or an electronic viewfinder, both of which consume a lot of power. However, both types will have similar battery lives if you use the LCD screens to preview and view captured images a lot, as this consumes a lot of power. However, all DSLRs and mirrorless cameras come with removable batteries, so you can carry a spare.
Lenses & Accessories
Choosing a DSLR gives you access to a plethora of lenses from a number of manufacturers, ranging from cheap and satisfactory to professional and wildly expensive. Mirrorless models are more restricted, offering access to a small number of lenses from the camera maker, though the selection is growing.
Sony offers more than three dozen E-mount lenses, for instance, while Nikon has hundreds of lenses available for its DSLRs (Canon has hundreds of lenses, too). However, right now, Canon has only seven M-series lenses available for its mirrorless lineup of mirrorless cameras.
Mirrorless cameras such as the Panasonic and Olympus use the Micro Four Thirds sensor format and have the widest selection of mirrorless camera bodies and lenses because they have been around the longest. But Sigma, Tamron and other companies also make Micro Four Thirds lenses. You can generally purchase adapters to use DSLR-size lenses on a mirrorless camera that’s made by the same manufacturer (such as for Canon or Sony). But that often comes at a price of altering the focal length and zoom characteristics and sometimes disabling or slowing functions such as autofocus.
Viewing Options and Storage:
You need to find a high quality and efficient spy pen camera with a better viewing option. Besides this, you also need to look out for the storage capacity. A camera with an external SD storage will offer you more space to store all your videos and recordings.
The battery life will always determine the run-time of the spy pen camera you are about to buy. It is important that you find the best spy pen camera with a powerful and long lasting battery. This will assure you of a long run-time.
This is another important factor you need to look out for when making your purchase. The best spy pen camera is one with a higher video resolution. This is because cameras with a higher resolution will give you a detailed view of whatever is happening in the video.
Low Light Conditions:
AF system only has nine points
Best all-rounder Canon’s latest entry-level model has a vari-angle touchscreen at its rear as its main shouting point, and this lets you frame up images and Full HD videos from all kinds of awkward positions (and even take selfies without bother). We also love the fact that you can start from a simple Guided user interface when you’re just cutting your photographic teeth and then switch to the standard setup when you get more confident and want more options to hand. On top of that, you get Wi-Fi and NFC to keep you connected to smart devices without cables, 5fps burst shooting, the latest DIGIC processing system and Canon’s Dual Pixel CMOS AF system that keeps autofocus swift in live view and smooth when shooting videos, all in addition to over thirty years’ of lens options to use alongside. Canon has squeezed a lot of goodness into the EOS 200D’s body, so it deserves to be high up on your shortlist.
Best value entry-level DSLR The K-70 is a little pricier than some of the other options here, but it’s arguably the best value entry-level DSLR you can buy right now, as it features so much you just won’t find in any other DSLR at this price point. The standard pentamirror viewfinder you tend to find on every other similar DSLR, for example, is in fact a larger, brighter pentaprism on the K-70, while burst shooting is at 6fps and the maximum shutter speed very respectable at 1/6000sec. Perhaps more importantly, image stabilisation is built into the camera rather than the lens itself, which means you benefit from this with all mounted lenses, and the whole thing is wrapped up in a weather-resistant, freezeproof body. It’s not the lightest model, and you won’t quite get the same swift video autofocus as you do with Canon’s EOS 200D, but if you want the best specs-to-price ratio at this level, the K-70 is a mighty fine choice.
Panasonic Lumix GX80 + Lumix G VARIO 12-32mm f/3.5-5.ASPH. MEGA O.I.S.
Restricted tilt-screen range
Best for style Despite lacking a viewfinder, the X-A10’s body isn’t quite as slim as the other CSCs here, but it’s still thinner than any of the DSLRs. That advantage is lost by the comparatively large size of the kit lens. As on the Canon EOS 1300D, there’s a basic feature guide to help beginners get going, with fully automatic, basic scene modes and PASM settings available direct from the shooting mode dial. More advanced, wider-ranging scene modes and filter effects are also available. Image quality is very good overall, and the kit lens’s optical stabiliser helps to maintain sharp results.
Features – The HawkCam Pro works great as a nanny camera because of the wide-angle camera and audio capture functions. It’s designed to work in any location which means you can install it anywhere. The infrared technology is the perfect way to monitor your house while you’re out for the evening.
Best For – This hidden nanny camera is an excellent choice for parents that are trying a new babysitter or nanny out. This is a great tool to make sure you chose the caregiver for your children correctly. It also lets you check in on your children and the nanny without repeated phone calls.
Vimtag HD VT-361
Features – This is the best nanny cam for recording indoors. It features night vision, remote tilt/pan controls, and two-way audio. The video feed can be accessed on smartphones or through the internal SD card. The motion detection is perfect for recording when there’s activity in the room.
Best For – This is a great choice for parents that want to use a hidden nanny cam to check in on the person watching their kids and their children. The remote tilt / pan feature helps parents watch their children while they play. The night vision is the perfect way to keep an eye on new childcare professionals during the evening.
Features – The Titathink TT520PW is an easily concealable nanny camera because it’s so small. The size of the camera is only 1.in x 1.in which means it fits perfectly in any hiding spot. It records HD video quality and has configurable motion detection zones. This nanny camera also supports WPS connectivity so you can pair it easily with your network.
Best For – This is a great option for parents that need to hide a camera in a room that doesn’t offer a lot of options. The size of the camera, paired with the video quality, makes it the perfect hidden nanny cam. It’s also easy to connect to your network because of the WPS feature.
In our humble opinion, the Sony RXII is one of the most beautiful bridge cameras ever made. Its 24-200mm lens boasts a constant aperture of f/2.right through the zoom range, meaning you can get maximum light transmission and strong bokeh no matter what distance you’re working at. It is just a superb optic, and an absolute joy to use.
The best part? It’s backed up by some serious imaging power. The 20.MP 1-inch sensor housed beneath the bonnet of the RXII produces exquisite images, and Sony’s ‘stacked’ design gives it a faster data readout over its predecessor.
Canon PowerShot SX60 HS
You can extend your zoom reach rather nicely with the Canon PowerShot SX60 HS, which offers a lovely focal range of 21-1365mm equivalent. The 16.1MP high-sensitivity CMOS sensor also means you’ll get some top images out of it, and the Digic Processor is a welcome addition to improve performance.
Elsewhere you’ve got 6.4fps continuous shooting, a 922k-dot electronic viewfinder, and a nice Zoom Framing Assist feature to help with that enormous focal range. It makes for a well-rounded imaging tool.
Sony Cyber-shot RXIII
Sony has made a habit of updating models while keeping them in the range to provide a range of options at a range of prices. With its RXIII, it’s taken the bones of the RXII as a starting point and boosted the lens to a longer 24-600mm (equivalent) f/2.4-option, while also reworking the grip to support this better and throwing in another ring around the lens to allow one each for focus, zoom and aperture.
Battery life has also improved among a few other things, and pretty much all the good bits from the RXII that made that model a smash – not least that excellent 4K video recording options – have been maintained.
Spy Pen 1080p 3GB Hidden Camera
The Spy Pen Hidden Camera by Vetro is among the most popular pen cameras on the market. The pen has a solid, durable feel in your hand and it is easy to operate. This stealthy product is capable of HD quality images with 1080p resolution. The product comes with 3GB of internal memory, which should be enough to store up to six hours of 1080p video.
Vetro’s Spy Pen Hidden Camera would definitely be among the top of the line products in the category, should there be any contest. Both the image and the video quality are excellent.
The battery is rechargeable with the included USB cable, and once the battery is fully charged, it allows up to 90 minutes of continuous recording. Whether it’s for spying, simply taking pictures, or because you like owning hi-tech gadgets, this will pen camera cover all your needs. It is definitely a product worth buying. iSPY 720p HD DVR Spy Pen iSPY has come up with a nifty little product that will fulfill all your spying needs. The iSPY HD DVR Spy Pen features a 720p HD camera for smooth capture of smooth images and videos. The recording quality is excellent. The high-capacity polymer lithium battery ensures you are able to get the best performance out of the device. The iSPY HD DVR Spy Pen also works as a normal pen.
The packaging includes bonus items too. The bonus accessories included are a mini keychain recorder with a hidden camera, one genuine leather pen holder, and an GB memory card.
The bonus accessories offered with the iSpy HD DVR Spy Pen are a huge plus, as is the one-year warranty and total satisfaction money back guarantee. The camera quality is superb at 720p. The battery will allow 60 minutes of recording time once it’s been fully charged. It is an excellent product built for stealth and quality. It is a fantastic value for its price.
NexGadget Spy Pen
The great thing about the NexGadget Spy Pen is that it can take both quick picture snapshots of a problem as well as full HD quality videos. It doesn’t require any complicated software to work and comes with a free 3GB SD. You can remove the card and insert it into your computer to watch the videos you’ve taken, or you can plug the pen right into your computer via USB to save time.
It’s capable of taking 1920x1080p videos and the camera is megapixels. If you want to get a quick clear picture of what’s going on in your drain pipes there are few cameras that can match this one. You simply click once to start your video and click again to stop it.
Corprit Black Hidden Spy Pen Camera
The Corprit Black Hidden Spy Camera is another great option for taking videos of small compact spaces. It has a 100 degree wide angle lens to give you a full view of your surroundings and the videos are full 1080p HD quality. It has 8GB of storage built right in and does not require the use of an external SD card.
It also uses a rechargeable lithium ion battery as a power source and will run for up to hour between charges which is plenty for any plumbing uses although it would be nice if it lasted a bit longer. It connects to your computer using a USB 2.0 connection. The pen also writes very well as an added bonus.
When you’re working in and around plumbing you don’t need bulky equipment – traditional video camera equipment simply isn’t of much use. Spy pen cameras are ideal because of their compact size.
High Resolution Video
You might think these small little cameras would be relatively unimpressive in terms of picture and video quality, but that’s actually not the case. Most video spy cameras on the market today are HD quality cameras that provide a very clear picture.
When you’re looking into the entranceway of drain pipes sometimes all you need is to be able to see a few inches in and that’s where these pens can really come in handy to give you a clear view of what’s going on.
It’s one thing to take quality videos, but they won’t be of much use if you can’t take more than a few seconds of video at a time. You may be surprised to learn that most of these spy pen cameras have pretty decent built-in storage capacity.
On average you’ll find most of them have at least 8GB of storage and some can even be expanded with a Micro SD card. You can easily store a couple of hours of video at a time and save it to view when it’s convenient.
The only thing I don’t like about most spy cameras is that they don’t as a rule allow for seamless Wi-Fi connection with a portable device such as a smartphone or a tablet.
You generally have to connect them to a device with a USB connection which means that you will normally need to have a laptop with you if you want to view the videos you’ve taken shortly after taking them. It’s not an ideal setup, but it is workable if you’re properly prepared.
Ease of Operation
If a video spy camera’s going to be useful it needs to be easy to operate and they generally are. Most operate by simply clicking the camera on and off. That’s probably why they’re so popular with spies as it simply looks like you’re preparing your pen for use – not activating a camera that can record its surroundings in HD quality video.
One thing to be sure of when purchasing an unlocked or ‘SIM-free’ phone is that not all SIM-free handsets are unlocked.
The excellent Vodafone Smart Ultra is a classic example of this. It is SIM-free, but if you want to use it for any network other than Vodafone you have to first use it for a month with a Vodafone SIM, and then pay £20 to get it unlocked.
EE’s own branded phones are similar. In both cases it may well still be better to buy network branded phones and go through the pain of getting them unlocked, than to buy on contract.
The right SIM
One other thing to consider is the size and shape of the SIM required for your phone. Make sure you get a nano-SIM if a nano-SIM is what your phone requires.
If you get that wrong it is easily solvable – every network will gladly send over a different-sized SIM. SIM cards tend to come in all three sizes – you simply pop out the one you need.
But that’s assuming you are getting a new SIM, and if you’re looking for a SIM-free phone or unlocked phone you probably already have one.
You can buy adaptors that let you fit a Nano-SIM or Micro-SIM in a Micro-SIM or full-size SIM slot for a very small charge.
More important is to make sure that if you want 4G you get a 4G-enabled phone and SIM.
Welcome to the Underwater Photography Guide. This online book and magazine is a complete underwater photography tutorial full of u/w photography tips and techniques. Our idea is simple – learn, shoot, explore. We hope you enjoy and come back often – Scott Gietler, Owner of UWPG and Bluewater Photo & Travel.
Less battery life
Noisy at high ISO’s, although high ISO has limited use underwater, so this is not a big factor.
Less control over depth of field. A larger-sensor dSLR will have a smaller depth of field at a large aperture, giving a blurred background that is difficult to accomplish with a compact camera.
The most capable Micro Four Thirds option
If you’re already invested in Micro Four Thirds lenses, the E-MII is the most capable model you can buy. You’ll pay a premium, however, and settle for lower image quality than larger sensor cameras deliver.
The Olympus E-MII is one of the fastest-focusing mirrorless cameras we’ve used, boasts a class-leading image stabilization system, and can shoot in continuous autofocus mode at a ground-breaking 1fps, faster than even pro-grade DSLRs. It matches our top pick with a rugged weather-sealed exterior, 4K video, and direct access to camera and shooting settings for swift adjustment. Its smaller Micro Four Thirds sensor, with inherent image quality limitations, and high launch price keep it from knocking off our top pick. But if you already own Micro Four Thirds lenses and have an enviable budget, the E-MII is a compelling choice.
A compact street shooter
The Olympus PEN-F is an impressively specced camera in a small package that’s well-suited for street photography. Compact enough to fit in a coat pocket, it has the first new sensor we’ve seen from Olympus in years, plus an articulated screen. Its image-stabilization system is rated to let you handhold images at shutter speeds up to five stops slower than without stabilization. Unlike our top picks, though, this model isn’t weather-sealed. In addition, it uses a slower contrast-detect autofocus system that is much less able to track moving subjects than the hybrid systems found in our main picks.
Why you should trust me
I’ve worked as a professional photographer and digital-imaging consultant for almost 1years. I’m on the faculty of New York City’s International Center of Photography, and I lead photography workshops around the country. I’ve been covering cameras and photo gear for Wirecutter since 2013, getting to shoot with dozens of new cameras as they become available. I also shoot some of the lifestyle photography you see on our site. As a result, I have a keen understanding of current camera technology, as well as of the features and performance that make a real difference when you’re out shooting.
In seeking out the best mirrorless camera I’ve spent more than 70 hours across various versions of this guide poring over manufacturers’ spec sheets, reading reviews from authoritative sources, and of course, doing real-world shooting in and around New York City. For this latest guide I’ve also shot side by side with our top two contenders to see which one deserves your hard-earned cash.
How we picked
The great appeal of mirrorless cameras is that they can offer the image quality, handling, and features traditionally found in DSLRs in a smaller, lighter system. These cameras forgo the optical viewfinders found in traditional DSLRs—whose through-the-lens view is made possible by a flip-up mirror—in favor of an electronic viewfinder (EVF) that offers a digital preview of how the image will be recorded by the camera. By eliminating the entire mirror mechanism (and, yes, that’s where the name comes from), a mirrorless camera can be relatively light and compact.
And in the last few years, camera makers have squeezed very large camera sensors into increasingly smaller bodies, bringing great image quality in low light and the option to use shallow depth of field (i.e., blurred backgrounds) as a creative compositional tool. Photographers looking to ease their load and avoid drawing attention to themselves with a big intimidating DSLR can appreciate these advances, knowing that they no longer have to sacrifice image quality for portability.
We typically avoid recommending full-frame models such as the Sony αseries. As impressive as they are—squeezing pro-level features and performance into amazingly small cameras—these specialized cameras are designed for a small segment of users with specific needs. We discuss this topic in more detail later in this guide.
I also eliminated cameras such as the Nikon Vwith small sensors because they just can’t compete with the larger Micro Four Thirds and APS-C format models in terms of image quality or dynamic range (the ability to render both highlight and shadow detail in a single exposure). Nikon has since put the sensor technology from its 1-series models to much better use in compact cameras such as the DL 18-50 and DL 24-85.
Cameras with very slow AF performance or outdated specs and features that make them ripe for replacement also fell out of consideration. We have much more detail on what we cut and why in The competition, below.
We’d have no qualms at all about making prints shot at ISO 51,200.
In shooting a few hundred frames with the X-TI found white balance and exposure to be accurate in a range of lighting conditions with consistently pleasing results. The X-Tdelivers great-looking images in any situation you can throw at it. Shooting in JPEG mode the X-Tcontinues the Fuji tradition of superior image processing. You get lifelike colors and well-judged contrast, with none of the ham-fisted sharpening or noise suppression artifacts that, on other cameras, make shooting JPEGs a huge trade-off between quality and convenience. Impressively, the X-Tactually takes Fuji’s image processing to higher level. We were surprised at just how clean and detailed images were when shooting outdoors well past nightfall.
Who else likes our pick
At the time of this writing, reviews are still trickling in for the X-TThe ones we’ve seen so far, however, offer kudos to Fuji for making significant upgrades yet keeping what worked so well in the X-T1.
DPReview gave the X-Tits gold award, noting gains in autofocus performance that, “puts it broadly on par with the likes of the Sony a6300 and Canon’s 80D,” though they add that AF speed drops noticeably in low-light situations, with the camera falling back on its slower contrast-detect autofocus mechanism.
Flaws but not dealbreakers
The X-T2’s rear screen is not touch-sensitive. Though you can argue that the wealth of external controls minimizes the need for one, using a touchscreen to switch focus among different areas of the frame is much faster than any analog method. And this is a feature that is now commonplace on mirrorless cameras from Sony, Panasonic, and Olympus.
First of all thanks for reading my article to the end! I hope you find my reviews listed here useful and that it allows you to make a proper comparison of what is best to fit your needs and budget. Don’t be afraid to try more than one product if your first pick doesn’t do the trick.
Most important, have fun and choose your pen camera wisely! Good luck!
So, TOP3 of pen camera
- №1 — FabQuality 1080p HD Hidden Camera Pen BUNDLE 16GB SD Micro Card + USB card Reader + 7 INK FILLS + updated battery + USB Plug! – Record Executive Multifunction DVR. Perfect Gift Easy to Use
- №2 — Spy Pen with Hidden Camera – 1080P FHD Video Pen Recorder with Motion Detetion
- №3 — Spy Camera LTMADE 1296P 32G Hidden Camera Pen OV4689 Full Real 2K Low Illumination 1080P Pen Camera Multfunction Pen DVR Cam