Shooting the hunts is an adventurous thing to do and could be very informative and helpful to beginners and amateur hunters. In addition, the Best Video Cameras for Hunting helps the hunters, the experience of the former hunters and the trial and error that they go through would help the new hunters.
Hunters want to rediscover the whole experience and see where they went over the board and where they lagged. They want to review the entire thing when they come back; therefore, recording the hunt becomes even more essential. Shooting the hunt keeps track of the game movement, and it also focuses more precisely, which in return helps the hunter to target. We can say that shooting the hunt makes the hunter aware of the situation.
Documenting experiences like hunting fills people with thrill, and it provides a clear perspective of the things one should and should not do when they are out in the wild. Filming the hunt and posting it on distinct websites can help many people and make them aware of the things they will face in the wild.
Another reason for shooting the hunt is that the hunters need to keep it to flaunt to their friends and family, which is very wholesome. So all the memories remain intact and the thrill too!
Our Recommendation: Canon XA11 Professional Camcorder
- For low budget – GoPro HERO8 Black – Waterproof
- For medium budget – Panasonic HC-W580K Full HD Camcorder
- For maximum budget – Nikon D3200 24.2 MP CMOS Digital SLR
Must Read: Best Binoculars for Hunting
- 1 Best Video Cameras for Hunting!
- 2 Buying Guide
- 3 Conclusion:
- 4 FAQs
Best Video Cameras for Hunting!
To find out the suitable camera/camcorder for filming the hunts, there are some products shortlisted below:
|Canon XA11 Professional Camcorder||
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|Panasonic HC-W580K Full HD Camcorder||
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|Canon VIXIA HF R800 Camcorder||
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Canon XA11 Professional Camcorder is one of the best filming camcorders, especially for long-range hunting. It has some significant features that leave you in awe. XA11 captures the most phenomenal and detailed pictures and records vivid videos with excellent auto-focus to target the subject more effectively. The price range of this camcorder goes beyond one’s budget, but if you are a true hunter and need to film your hunts without compromising on the details, this is the money very well invested.
20x HD Zoom Lens:
The adaptable 20x HD Zoom video lens provides the users with various zoom ranges that help focus the intricate details of the scene. The optical zoom lens comes with a 26.8-576mm focal range and a minimum object distance of just 23.6 inches or 60 cm. In addition, the zoom control provides the users with automatic sensitivity modes and user-programmable direction.
8-Blade Circular Aperture Design:
This design helps in enhancing the image quality in the out-of-focus areas by creating smooth and fuzz-free images.
2.91 Megapixel HD CMOS Pro Image Sensor:
The high sensitive CMOS sensor installed in this camcorder lets you capture up to approximately 2136×1362 pixels. The high sensitivity provides vivid, clear, and natural recording with a low luminance noise rating of +3 dB even in common light conditions.
Full HD Recording in AVCHD and MP4 codecs:
XA11 can record in Full HD in AVCHD and MP4 recording codecs at various bit rates, even simultaneously. This feature makes the recording way too versatile and provides the users with the choices for the post-capture options.
3.0-inches LCD with Electronic Viewfinder:
The bright and vivid 460,000 dot LCD comes with high contrast and a wide-view angle (over 80° at all angles). XA11 is equipped with the 0.24 inches tilt-type color electronic viewfinder with 100% field of view and 1.56 million dots of resolution, ensuring the critical focus adjustment. A joystick is located to the right of the viewfinder that helps in camera controls and settings on display instead of using the touch panel controls.
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To reduce the blurs and bumps in the photos and videos, there is an Intelligent Optical Image Stabilization system that offers its services in various shooting situations. The options can be chosen manually or automatically; therefore, it is Intelligent, right? There are three stabilization options provided by the XA11; Dynamic Image Stabilization, Macro Image Stabilization, and Powered Image Stabilization.
Wide Dynamic Range and Highlight Priority Modes:
These features ensure to keep the natural tones and colors of the images and videos intact all along. As a result, XA11 promises to deliver an exceptional and versatile recording experience to the users while hunting. This is one of the key factors one should look for in the cameras or camcorders for filming long-range hunting.
Panasonic has always been making a better world through its phenomenal products. HC-W580 is one of the best camcorders on the market that provides terrific handheld stability under $400. In addition, it fits right in your palm without any discomfort due to its ergonomic design.
50x Optical Zoom and HDR Mode:
The zoom feature captures the distant objects without any image distortion of the quality of the image produced. The 50x optical zoom and the 5-axis image stability accentuate the view. The HDR (High Dynamic Range) mode does not alter the real essence of the view being captured by minimizing the high-contrast look due to the over or underexposed shooting conditions. So the unwanted shadows and highlights would not be a problem with the HDR mode.
Built-in Wi-Fi and NFC:
The built-in Wi-Fi and NFC allow the users to catch up with the other connected devices right away. It can be connected to iOS or Android in no time, and it can then be operated within the range anywhere.
Built-in Creative Controls:
Creative Controls let you play around with the video or pictures inside the camcorder without even transferring to the computer or other devices.
Panasonic HC-W580K produces high-quality videos during the day and when the lighting conditions are not that pleasant. The HDR mode plays a vital role in this regard. Even in low light conditions, this feature lets you capture authentic and natural videos with phenomenal gradation. Moreover, HC-W580K can record super sharp HD 1080p at 60 fps videos.
5-axis Hybrid Optical Image Stabilization:
The 5-axis Hybrid O.I.S. wipes out any distortion or fuzziness in the images/videos captured after every shot. This feature is also responsible for providing maximum handheld stability during the shots.
Level Shot feature of the HC-W580K that adjusts and corrects the tilted images or the images that have been slightly compromised during the capture.
28mm Wide Angle:
The 28mm Wide Angle captures the broader shot and fits more to the frame (like any 35mm or equivalent camera), so you can film your hunt without any inconvenience.
Multi Scene Twin Camera:
The innovative twin camera feature provides picture-in-picture recording if connected with another device in range. The second built-in camera lets you record efficiently while adding multiple screens at the same time.
Secondary Camera Lens:
The secondary camera lens is built on the side of the camcorder screen that makes the display screen a bit longer, but it also gives the degree of flexibility. The lens can use to film yourself as well as the hunt simultaneously.
Nikon D3200 HD-SLR (Single-Lens Reflex camera) is the most budget-friendly camera for filming hunts. This one right here is one of the best point-and-shoot cameras, as hunting would require more focus on the hunt itself than the shooting. Therefore it would let the user hunt more diligently. The users have to click a button, and the job will get done as effectively as it should be done. The picture quality and image stabilization in the price range of the Nikon D3200 will blow your mind. It is the best hunting video camera under $300 so far, with the perks that will amaze you every time!
24.2 MP DX-format CMOS Sensor:
The CMOS sensor installed in the D3200 works great even in low-light conditions without a flash. For low-light conditions, the wide ISO range of 100 to 6400 can be achieved, while for highly low-light conditions, it can achieve the ISO 12800 equivalent sensitivity, which is one great feature. Moreover, the 24.2 MP DX-format CMOS sensor is the most potent sensor ever installed in an HD-SLR camera so far. So the pictures and videos look as lively as they are without any distortion in the image quality.
11-point Autofocusing System:
The phenomenal shutter speed and the 11-point Autofocusing System provides you with a lively and precise view of the game. The users just have to focus on it once while getting the target in the frame, and then the shooting is a piece of cake.
Wi-Fi and NFCs:
No one likes to wait around for a very long time to discover their experience out in the wild. To solve that issue, the D3200 easily transfers the videos and pictures to your devices so that you can look them up as soon as possible. D3200 can also be operated remotely but, of course, within range through any device that has been connected with it. So you don’t only get to share and flaunt your hunting game instantly but also shoot and focus the game through your phone (or someone else can control the camera remotely).
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Manual and Automatic Controls:
Whether you are just a beginner or a professional, the D3200’s ease of usage is going to help you while you are out in the wild hunting and shooting simultaneously. There are no hard and fast settings that are to be turned on; the camera features two modes for your convenience. The one is manual, and the other is automatic that can be chosen according to the user’s preference.
Scene Mode and Scene Recognition System:
D3200 records ultra HD 1080p videos with auto-focus, manual exposure, and sound control. In addition, the Scene Mode provides the users with six different modes; portraits, night portrait, close up, landscape, etc. All of the modes produce phenomenal results. Furthermore, the Live View lets the Scene Auto Selector into action that enables the camera to get efficient according to the situation and shooting circumstances. Moreover, the Scene Recognition System is powered by exact 420-pixel RGB sensors that help in optimizing the best shots.
AF-S DX Zoom-NIKKOR lens:
NIKKOR lenses are the reliable and precise lenses that Nikon produces. They offer peak performance and high-end clarity. The lens used in the D3200 is the AF-S DX Zoom-NIKKOR 18-55mm that is exceptional and provides you with a great deal of stabilized images.
GoPro HERO8 is the modified version of the previously engineered cameras by the manufacturers. It is super easy to use and customizable, with lots of unique features that will take your shooting experience to another level. The most exceptional of all the elements is the voice command that makes it easy to operate while hunting. It is the best 4K video camera for filming hunting that is also budget-friendly.
This feature enables you to shoot videos and pictures without any fuzziness or distortion caused by extraneous factors. The videos are made pretty smooth regardless of any shakes and leveling issues. It offers three stabilization levels (On, High and Boost) that users can go for according to their situation and preferences. Even it can capture slow-motion videos pretty smoothly. The feature works with every resolution that the camera offers and is compatible with the frame rate. The in-app horizon leveling lets you alter the videos and images even more.
Intuitive User Interface and Voice Command:
The ease of use of the filming camera will allow the users to focus on the hunting game as much as they should. Voice command is one of the most thoughtful features a camera could have. HERO8 comes with the easiest and customizable settings that you can even choose which option you want to show up on the screen, and the voice command makes it even more terrific! In addition, three built-in mics are susceptible to the sound that you mean to record.
Hunting is not an easy task, and recording it as you hunt can be hectic, but the HERO8 is equipped with the TimeWarp 2.0 that shoots pretty smooth videos and pictures as you move around. The feature lets the camera’s speed adjust according to the scene, motion, and lighting conditions. So high-speed videos or the slow motions ones, every video will be as lively and full of action as the scene has been!
SuperPhoto uses AI to adapt to the lighting conditions that ultimately affect the image quality. The HDR is also modified in this model to give some severe details even in low-light conditions. As a result, the images look crystal clear, natural, and have phenomenal contrast without blurs or bumps. In addition, the nighttime time-lapse accentuates the scene at night in various resolutions ranging from 4K, 2.7K 1400p, and 1080p.
This feature provides the users with four lenses to capture/film from; SuperView, Wide, Distortion Free Linear, and Narrow. The users can toggle between the lens options as they prefer in no time.
Video Capture Resolution:
There are three shooting modes that the HERO8 offers; Night mode, Burst, and Photo Mode. The sensor’s resolution is about 12 MP, and it provides the video capture resolution of 4K Ultra HD 2160p (3840x2160p at 24/25/30/50/60 fps). In addition, you can live stream in 1080p using the Go Pro app while you hunt!
HERO8 has a flip-up display that can customize as per your needs. The LED light lens extension helps with nighttime shooting (Light Mod). The fantastic built-in mounting rings allow you to connect different accessories. There is a 3.5mm headphone jack, an HDMI jack, and additional mics (Media Mod). There is a front-facing screen to let you see the scene that you are shooting (Display Mod). The thoughtful and streamlined design is compact therefore ideal for taking on hunting trips. The ergonomic design lets your finger smoothly transition the mounts; even changing the battery is super easy and fast too.
Canon never ceases to amaze the users with the quality of the cameras and camcorders they engineer. VIXIA HF R800 camcorder is one of the best gadgets to film hunting games. The powerful zoom and broader frame fit everything effectively, leaving no room for any distortion or fuzziness. Although it is a camcorder, the compact design is way too easy and convenient to use that the users will not face any difficulty while recording and hunting at the same time.
SuperRange Optical and Dynamic Image Stabilization System:
The distortion and shaky images or videos can be handled and stabilized quickly without altering the quality of the shot. Even when the users are continuously zooming in, the image gets stabilized with it. Therefore, the Dynamic Image Stabilization system provides a wide range of stability with various motions. The rotational camera shakes are also adjusted due to this system. The rotational shakes can be due to walking and shooting simultaneously or other factors, but this system helps smooth the image quality as you shoot.
57x Advanced Zoom:
Hunting can be full of energy and action, and things are to be shot precisely; for that purpose, this camcorder is facilitated with the zoom feature that allows you to zoom as you prefer. The telephoto power of the camcorder is increased up to 1853mm due to the Advanced Zoom feature. The users can shoot moments that are near, distant, or wherever. The Highlight Priority mode features backlight correction to get the best shots and other options that you can choose as per your preference.
3.28 Megapixel Full HD CMOS Image Sensor:
This phenomenal image sensor lets the users capture the actual hunting experience in 1920 x 1080 resolutions. Furthermore, it adds image sensitivity that brings life to the videos with their natural essence intact even in the low light. The fully detailed and crisp video is what you get out of this camcorder!
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Zoom Framing Assist:
Zoom Framing Assist is one of the most noticeable features. It helps the camcorder record and zoom on to the distant object without causing any damage to the quality of the image/video. Furthermore, the magnification can manage in no time as this feature is available in auto or manual mode that helps the users precisely track and focus on the subject.
Highlight Priority Mode:
The VIXIA HF R800 brings life to the things it captures; there is minimum loss of details as ensured by the Highlight Priority Mode. The Backlight Correction also helps in the contract and shadow management, making the images/videos more realistic, natural, and balanced.
Customizable Recording Options:
The VIXIA HF R800 lets the user choose from slow to high-speed motion recording per the situation and circumstances. The movies like slow-motion effects can record if the settings are down to 0.5x, which is ideal for recording the precise moments. On the other hand, the high-speed recording offers a speed of 1200x, which can mold 20 hours of action into a single-minute scene. There are different speed options too to choose from.
DIGIC DV 4 Image Processor:
The great DIGIC DV 4 Image Processor enhances the image quality and performance by capturing more light from the surrounding that brings brightness and natural essence to the videos/pictures even in low-light conditions. Handheld shooting is also made more accessible and stabilized due to the processor. You do not have to worry about the bumps and blurs during handheld shooting now. 1080/60p recording captures the precise detail very smoothly, eliminating the fuzziness and the diagonal noise. The fast-moving subjects are captured crystal clear without any compromise on the natural color and gradation.
Intuitive User Interface:
The VIXIA HF R800 is equipped with a 3-inches touch panel LCD screen which is pretty bright and visible in every light condition. The settings and options are there to choose from in no time. Therefore it is convenient and easy to use for almost everyone, and while hunting, one needs a comparatively intuitive gadget to get all the help possible.
Things to consider while buying cameras for filming the hunt:
Choose the camera or camcorder that you prefer as per your hunting situation and requirement. There are many options to choose from;
Battery timing that the camera offers as the hunting game is pretty much unpredictable, so it can take as much time as it needs. Most cameras offer at least 8 to 10 hours. If you think you can do it with this time range, then it is good or just carries an extra battery and power bank.
Hunting and filming simultaneously can be very tricky; therefore, the size and weight of the camera would matter a lot. But, on the other hand, moving, moving around with bulky lens and cameras while hunting can be a little inconvenient; therefore, always go for a compact and lightweight option.
As a hunter, you must calculate the distances you will shoot to outline the suitable zoom options. For really long distances, 20X zoom is appropriate, and 10X zoom would do some good things for shorter ones.
Many cameras can operate cameras remotely, and it helps a lot if the hunting is difficult and you have another person to record the whole event. Some cameras also have a voice command option that is even more thoughtful and convenient.
Performance in Low light conditions:
Hunting can take long hours, and one must be ready for that, so to record even in the low light conditions is what your chosen camera should do. If you carry a camera that does not work well in common light conditions, then all the grace of the hunting game would be gone.
Microphone (internal or external):
If your camera does not have an internal microphone, you should go for the option to mount an external one. Even if the cameras have internal mics installed, some people go for an additional one to record the sound.
Choose the camera that offers maximum image stabilization as hunting would require movement, and movement will give rise to fuzziness and blur in the images/videos. Most cameras stabilize and smoothen the images on their own to ensure high-quality image output.
Resolution is one of the key factors to consider while buying a camera for filming the hunts to capture the real essence of the experience without compromising the scene’s quality and natural colors. There are various resolutions offered by the cameras on the market; SD, HD, Full HD, Quad HD, and 4K/2K. The Full HD cameras and 4K ones offer the best resolutions so far.
For filming the hunts, one needs more incredible autofocus speed and preciseness. The subject and the hunter are on the move; therefore, focusing should be efficient enough to cover everything smoothly. The high-end cameras have better autofocus performance. The processors and algorithms used in the cameras also account for the autofocus speed and accuracy.
Type of camera required:
DSLR Cameras are the most popular in photography and videography as they provide top-notch quality on a budget.
Action Cameras are famous for their compact size and versatility. You have to point, and it will do everything else on its own. Hunting is an extreme sport that requires total attention; therefore, filming with a thoughtful camera would be great.
As they are handheld, camcorders can capture most of the hunting game in detail without missing anything.
Additional gears to carry along
- Tripod to hold the camera for steady and clear images/videos
- Carrying cases to ensure the safety of the lens and the cameras.
- Lens for DSLRs and mirrorless cameras.
- Extra batteries or portable power banks.
- Treestand camera arm to mount the camera/camcorder if you are hunting from a treestand.
- Head mounts or chest straps to hold the camera if you are hunting and filming at the same time.
- A mountable microphone is you want to record clear sound without any distortions.
- Windshield to cover the external mic to minimize the wind or other unfavourable sounds you don’t want to record.
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Filming in the wild is difficult; therefore, bringing the best video cameras for hunting is what one should consider. There are tons of cameras available on the market with uncountable options, but the options you require the most should be on your checklist. Many high-end cameras will not be suitable for filming a hunt due to numerous reasons. Therefore getting your hands on the one that fits is what you should be doing if you want an exceptional picture and video quality!
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Can hunting be filmed using a regular camera?
Regular cameras, even smartphones, can be used for filming the hunt if you don’t want that much of a professional result in your videos and images.
Which camera is better if one is hunting and filming at the same time?
Action cameras and camcorders are a safe and convenient option if you do both deeds simultaneously without any help. You can run and shoot smoothly with these options as they won’t hold you back!
Are DSLRs better in the case of long-range hunting?
DSLRs would require a lens that can be a little bulky, but the image quality will be phenomenal if you got a tripod or another person who can assist you while hunting; DSLRs are excellent and convenient. But it won’t zoom so much if you want the intricate details to be captured, and go for options offering the zoom.
Which is better, DSLR or a camcorder?
A camcorder is a better option if you would be on the move, and it offers zoom too. In addition, camcorders are lightweight and have an ergonomic design. DSLRs provide high-quality images, but their lens is heavy and requires care; therefore, they are not ideal for filming the hunts.
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