Digital cameras seem to come out with new features every few months. They boast things like better image quality, more powerful zooms, or more megapixels. These things are all great, but I would like to focus on a feature that is often found in camera phones: WiFi connectivity. We all know that camera phones are great for posting photos onto the web (provided you are in your wireless phone’s service area) moments after you shoot them.
Camera makers have been offering models for a few years now that are WiFi enabled, and the price of these cameras has been coming down. While still not cheap, here are my selections for the five best affordable(under $300) WiFi digital cameras:
5) Nikon Coolpix S610c: Less expensive than the other Nikon cameras on this list, the S610c is example of “more is not always better”. Sure, you get 10 megapixels for less money, but what you gain in megapixels you lose in noise reduction (resulting in unwanted color changes or graininess).
That’s not to say that the image quality in the S610c is terrible, but it is not as good as the other cameras on the list. However, for a camera that has a movie mode, image stabilizer, 3 inch LCD display, and WiFi capability (1) for a camera that costs only $129 (at BUYDIG.com), the price is certainly right.
4) Nikon P1: A bit older than the Coolpix S52c, the P1 is an 8 megapixel WiFi camera that is a little bit sturdier and built with a tad more quality than its newer cousin. The P1 has red-eye fix, a 2.5 inch LCD screen, and 16 scene modes (2).
The one megapixel difference between the P1 and the S52c is not anything to be too concerned about, so if you don’t mind sacrificing one megapixel to get a camera with a little bit better image quality and overall better build, the P1 would be a good choice. The price is very similar to the S52c. I found it for $224.24 at Amazon.com.
3) Nikon Coolpix S52c: A sleek, stylish-looking 9 megapixel WiFi camera that can be found for under $200? Yes, it actually exists in the form of the Coolpix S52c. While the zoom is not as powerful as some of the other cameras on this list and the image quality is generally weaker, its affordability is tempting.
It shoots movies, has image stabilization and most of the common features found in cameras at a similar price range (3), but its quality reflects its lower price. I found this camera for $199 at electrobrands.com.
2) Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ50: This 9 megapixel offering from electronics giant Panasonic is notable for its high quality Leica lens and the top notch images that it produces. It also features an HD movie mode, 10x optical zoom, and automatic red eye correction(4).
While slightly large for a point and shoot digital camera, the Lumix is still pretty compact. My mother has a Lumix, and I can testify to the amazing images that this camera can produce, even under extremely dark conditions. The ability to send your photos at WiFi hotspots, combined with its excellent performance, make the Lumix DMC-TZ50 a great buy at $259 (I found this price at in76store.com).
1)Samsung ST 1000 Digital Camera: Yes, it has most of the usual features: Facial recognition, HDMI connectivity, large (3.5 inch) LCD touch screen, and a movie mode (5). What separates this 12 megapixel camera from the pack is the WiFi connectivity, Bluetooth connectivity, and GPS marking.
The WiFi lets you upload your photos to the internet in any WiFi hotspot, and the Bluetooth lets you send your images to any supported device (like a Bluetooth-capable cell phone). And if, for some reason, you want to remember where you took that stunning shot, you can have the camera mark it with a GPS mark.
This camera is very compact, easy to operate even with its wealth of options, and costs around $250 (I found it for $260 at simplyelectronics.net). It is an excellent choice for a reasonably priced WiFi digital camera.
These cameras offer unparalleled convenience when it comes to getting your photo online quickly, but if you have just bought a new digital camera that does not have WiFi capability, don’t worry. There are actually memory cards for cameras that have WiFi built into them, allowing you to upload photos to the internet via the memory card.