What kind of camera do you need for stop motion?
If you’re going to get a stop motion digital camera, you have to go all out with it. The device has to be professional and offer state-of-the-art functionality. For anyone planning to start a career as a stop motion animator, this together with free stop motion software will be the most important tools that determine the overall quality of the projects created.
This article will help you choose the best camera for stop motion according to your budget and the features you need. It goes over 7 top-rated cameras in different price ranges, all of them being suitable for professional use.
Regardless of whether you’re looking for a high-end model or something more affordable, you’ll find it below.
Type: DSLR Camera | Sensor size: 22.3mm x 14.9mm | Resolution: 24.1 MP | Lens: Canon EF/EF-S | Viewfinder: Optical | Screen type: LCD | Maximum continuous shooting speed: 30 fps
⊕ Convenient UI
⊕ Offers handy touchscreen functionality
⊕ High-quality lens
⊕ Lightweight and portable
⊖ Above average price
This product offers a combination of state-of-the-art functionality and convenient controls, allowing you to take stunning photos with minimum effort.
It has an ISO range of 100-25,600 and performs extremely well even in poor lighting. Additionally, it’s compatible with a long list of devices.
The camera has a big 24.1MP CMOS sensor that ensures you capture every single detail and enjoy rich colors. The integrated Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity provide convenient sharing and file transfer to compatible devices.
This model is often considered the best stop motion camera and given its reasonable price, functionality, and picture quality, that’s not really a surprise.
Type: Portable webcam | Sensor size: 4.8mm x 3.6mm | Resolution: 15 MP | Lens: Full HD glass | Viewfinder: Electronic | Screen type: No screen | Maximum continuous shooting speed: 30 fps
⊕ Cheaper than most professional options
⊕ Compatible with all popular OS
⊕ Cord length
⊕ Broad field of view
⊖ Requires a USB port
⊖ Can’t use without an Internet connection
This stop motion camera for kids and adults is slightly bigger than 3.5” at its widest. It comes with a full HD glass lens that is surrounded by a pair of mics that record stereo audio.
The head unit is connected to a rubberized clip that fits perfectly on laptop displays. The camera offers full HD 1080 resolution and is supplied with Carl Zeiss optics and a 20-stop AF system.
The C920 is a great substitution for a laptop’s standard webcam and can also serve as a solid stop motion camera. Setting the camera on an external display or laptop screen is simple, and it offers great functionality thanks to Logitech’s software.
Type: Mirrorless Camera | Sensor size: 23.5mm x 15.6 mm | Resolution: 24.2 MP | Lens: Sony E lens | Viewfinder: Electronic | Screen type: LCD | Maximum continuous shooting speed: 11fps
⊕ Integrated EVF
⊕ Top-notch autofocus
⊕ Compatible with many lenses
⊕ Up to 11fps RAW capture
⊖ 4K footage can be a bit unstable
⊖ Subpar battery duration
The A6100 is a 24-megapixel APS-C stop motion camera that was primarily designed for beginners and users who want to take beautiful pictures but don’t consider themselves to be a professional photographer.
The camera is supplied with an improved AF system, which makes it extremely simple to use.
The provided picture and AF offer the same level of quality that you’ll find in more expensive models like A6400 or A6600.
The primary drawbacks of this product are the same as with all A6 series models – controls and somewhat limited performance, but since this isn’t a flagship camera, that can be forgiven.
If you’re in search of the best camera for stop motion for beginners, that is capable of providing high video and image quality, then the A6100 is probably the choice for you.
Type: Digital Camera | Sensor size: 17.3 mm x 13 mm | Resolution: 16 MP | Lens: Micro Four Thirds | Viewfinder: Electronic | Screen type: LCD | Maximum continuous shooting speed: 30fps
⊕ Integrated EVF and flash
⊕ Tilting touchscreen
⊕ Fast AF system
⊕ 30fps 4K photo mode
⊕ 5-axis IS system
⊖ Lacks weather protection
The GX85 almost offers the perfect mix of picture quality, functionality, performance and size while being packed in a compact body and sold for a reasonable price.
This is a midrange model with a 16-megapixel Four-Thirds sensor, interchangeable lenses, and 4K support.
The GX85 allows taking vibrant photos akin to the once you’ll get from other 16MP Micro Four-Thirds models, the recorded 4K footage looks great, and you won’t have any problems with performance which is important for anyone looking for a stop motion camera.
Type: Mirrorless Vlogging Camera | Sensor size: 22.3 mm x 14.9 mm | Resolution: 24 MP | Lens: Canon EF-M | Viewfinder: Electronic | Screen type: LCD | Maximum continuous shooting speed: 10 fps
⊕ Quick Dual Pixel CMOS autofocus
⊕ Integrated digital viewfinder
⊕ Terrific vari-angle touch screen
⊖ Surprising 4K limitations
⊖ Manual lens retraction
⊖ Oversimplified exterior controls
The M50 is a good camera for stop motion if you’re looking for a function-packed model that also has a viewfinder, which is a rarity in this price range.
That said, the retractable 15-45mm native lens is somewhat clunky to use and some of the restrictions imposed onto the 4K mode will puzzle you.
Even so, this model marks a huge advancement for Canon’s EOS M cameras. The camera is equipped with the basic M100 mount and viewfinder, which makes this product mainly suitable for beginners and people, who are tired of using their phones as their main camera.
Overall, the most promising thing about the M50 is the indication that Canon is ready to evolve EOS M and Rebel series further and bring their quality closer to their flagship models.
Type: Ultra HD Webcam | Sensor size: 1/4" | Resolution: 9 MP | Lens: Glass | Viewfinder: Electronic | Screen type: No screen | Maximum continuous shooting speed: 60 fps
⊕ Ultra HD 4K resolution
⊕ Compatible with Windows Hello
⊕ Amazing microphone sound
⊖ High price
⊖ Doesn’t have an optical zoom
Without a doubt, BRIO deserves to be considered for the title of the best camera for stop motion due to the image and video quality it offers.
If you’re on a tight budget and merely need a high-res webcam, it’s wiser to simply purchase Logitech’s C922 for half the cost.
The footage you capture boasts great sharpness and it gets even better if the subject is properly lit.
BRIO also offers great clarity and the colors look quite natural, which is good news since most similar cams oversaturate the colors and make the picture look unrealistic.
Type: Compact Camera | Sensor size: 13.2 mm x 8.8 mm | Resolution: 20.1 MP | Lens: 28-100 mm F1.8-4.9 Zoom | Viewfinder: Electronic | Screen type: Tilting | Maximum continuous shooting speed: 10 fps
⊕ Face Recognition focus system
⊕ Great battery life (350 shots)
⊕ Impressive low light ISO - 483
⊕ Quick 1.80 lens at wide
⊖ Doesn’t have touchscreen controls
⊖ Lacks an external viewfinder
This Sony stop motion animation camera has a 1” sensor packed in a small body.
It uses the 24-200mm lens, which you can find in the previous model of the series, but boasts a more efficient and convenient AF system.
Considering that its predecessor was already packed with such features as lightning-quick continuous shooting and stunning 4K footage capture, RX100 VII exceeds all expectations.
Another new feature that has to be mentioned is the “Real-Time tracking autofocus” that can be set to face or eye recognition mode.
The camera also offers Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and NFC connectivity. Other than Real-Time Tracking, the RX100 VII has UHD 4K, Full HD, and high-speed (up to 1000fps) video recording options.
Canon EOS Rebel T7 DSLROur Choice
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Logitech C920 Hd ProBest webcam
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Sony Alpha A6100Compact
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This aspect is only relevant for webcams as stop action cameras are full screen by default. Meanwhile, a lot of webcams don't support the full broadcast resolution, and if that's the case with your device, then you won't have the opportunity to view your project in full screen on the TV or monitor screen – it’ll just be a small 640 by 480px window. That’s viable only if you intend to upload small videos online and nothing else.
In most cases, you have to manually focus the camera since otherwise every time there’s movement in the frame, the focus will change, which can be quite irritating. Getting a stop motion video camera with zoom can be helpful, but not mandatory. If you’re going for a zoom model, pick one with optical zoom since an electronic one only enlarges the pixels and damages the resolution.
A remote controller can be a lifesaver for a stop motion project that requires taking a lot of photos, with each shutter release potentially shaking the camera and changing the angle that needs to be perfectly consistent.
Additionally, you should check if the camera has a Live View mode that doesn’t drain the battery too much, as such a feature can save you a lot of time.
A mechanical shutter is poorly suited for shooting stop motion projects simply because such a project can take hours of recording to complete.
A digital shutter, even in cheap Canon cameras, is a better option as it offers superior durability for this type of videos. Thus, it’s wiser to limit your search only to options that have an electronic shutter.
Adaptability is always a welcomed feature and the ability to replace lenses, and pick between wide-angle and zoom depending on your needs is incredibly valuable. Even though you have to purchase additional lenses separately, getting them is definitely worth it if you want to enjoy as much creative freedom as possible.
ISO, or light sensitivity, is among the most defining characteristics of a digital camera. It determines the amount of light required for proper exposure (the smaller the value, the more light is required, and larger ISOs increase the camera’s sensitivity to light, meaning it requires less of it). DSLRs come with broad ISO ranges which make them very versatile and able to perform well in any lighting conditions.