Holiday Gift Guide 2016 – 2017: Top 10 Best Point and Shoot Cameras Under $500


Samsung Gear 360


A new type of camera, the Gear 360 from Samsung isn't strictly a point and shoot in the traditional sense. It's a virtual reality camera that captures what you're experiencing in 360-degrees, making the content playable in virtual reality with the Gear VR or other virtual reality headsets. It's the sort of thing that will appeal to those looking to get into the world of virtual reality film making and it's not too expensive either. Easy to use and connected with your smartphone, the Gear 360 is a new type of camera for an emerging medium.

Buy the Samsung Gear 360

Sony DSC-RX100/B


The RX100 line of devices has been a massive hit for Sony, and while this model might be the original, and now fairly old version, it's the most affordable and arguably the one with the best value to match. With a 20.2-megapixel sensor, as well as some Sony magic to boot, a Carl Zeiss lens and an incredibly crisp image the RX100/B is a flexible and formidable camera that will appeal to anyone. Including those looking to do a little more with their camera than the standard point and shoot sort of stuff.

Buy the Sony DSC-RX100/B

FujiFilm X30


Fuji's X-series have cameras have helped put the Japanese giant back on the map of digital cameras permanently. This latest is a point-and-shoot camera with one of the best lenses on the market, which delivers clear images as well as offering a Super Macro mode capable of focusing up to 1CM away from an object. With a hot shoe, built-in flash, flexible LCD, a great electronic viewfinder and a whole slew of manual controls, the X30 is cut above most cameras in this list. It's a great value package for everything you get here, and there's more than enough on offer to keep even the most demanding of photographers busy.

Buy the FujiFilm X30

Panasonic Lumix ZS60


The Panasonic Lumix ZS60 is an 18-megapixel camera that has an excellent 30x zoom thanks to the Leica lens and it also comes with an electronic viewfinder and lens controls to make this feel closer to a compact DSLR sort of experience. It has great 4K video recording options as well as stereo microphones and a sharp, good-looking LCD to view images with, too. There's no hot shoe support here, but there is a built-in flash, which could be in a better place. Panasonic have, however, tried their best to add a range of features here that a lot of photographers would be surprised to see in such a small package.

Buy the Panasonic Lumix ZS60

Nikon P7800


The Nikon P7800 is not only a camera from a great name with a big history in the world of photography, but something that looks and feels a lot more professional than your usual point-and-shoot cameras out there. The Nikkor lens as well as 12.2-megapixel sensor work together to offer an incredible package and the electronic viewfinder makes composing and capturing shorts a real breeze. The focusing here is good and the overall look and feel is a quality affair, too.

Buy the Nikon P7800

GoPro HeroSession


The GoPro Hero Session isn't quite a point-and-shoot in the traditional sense, as there's no display here, but it is super-simple and easy-to-use. Whether that's taking it to the beach and sticking it to a selfie stick to capture your day, or attaching it to a bike or car for some more extreme footage. As one of the cheapest and easiest to use GoPros available right now, the GoPro Hero Session is the sort of gift that won't cost too much, but will certainly bring a smile to the face of those outdoor types you know and love.

Buy the GoPro Hero Session

Canon PowerShot G9 X


The Canon PowerShot line has become known for some excellent, high-end devices over the years, and the G9 X adds in some style to match. With a 20.2-megapixel sensor and an excellent Canon lens, this is one device to look out for, especially given that it's excellent value and also offers users all kinds of features such as 60fps recording in Full HD. Continuous shooting speeds of up to 6.0 frames a second also help to make this a competitive camera for those looking to get some great work done on the move with a compact little piece of kit.

Buy the Canon PowerShot G9 X

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX300


If you're in the market for a point-and-shoot camera that also offers some more DSLR features, namely better zoom, the DSC-HX300 from Sony is a great option. With a DSLR look and feel as well as a quality Carl Zeiss lens and a 20.3-megapixel sensor, this is a great option for those looking to graduate from simple point-and-shoots, without needing to spend the sort of money that DSLRs and mirrorless cameras command.

Buy the Sony CyberShot DSC-HX300

GoPro Hero4 Silver


The second, and perhaps best, GoPro on this list, the Hero 4 is the GoPro that all professionals as well as prosumers will no doubt be lusting over. It looks good, has a simple little display to show WiFi, battery life and the recording time. Infinitely attachable to all sorts of vehicles or your person, the GoPro Hero 4 is well worth looking into. It might be pretty pricey for a GoPro, but given the high-quality images and smooth motion that it picks up, this could be considered good value for money, rather than something that's a little pricey.

Buy the GoPro 4 Silver

Canon PowerShot SX710 HS


The PowerShot SX710 HS is a great little compact machine for those looking to get a little closer to the action. With a 30x zoom as well as a 20.2-megapixel sensor, the PowerShot SX710 HS is great for all kinds of users, and offers a lot of flexibility in one machine. With stereo microphones as well as 60fps capture in 1080p resolution, the SX710 HS can do a little bit of everything. Perfect or those just starting out, as well as those looking to get their hands on something a little more capable, this is a good option that won't break the bank.

Buy the Canon PowerShot SX710 HS