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Which action camera is best?

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From Full HD to 4K via image stabilisation, activity sensors and auto-editing, the latest action cameras offer something for every kind of adventure. 

Choosing the right action camera can be tricky. There are hundreds of action cams out there, ranging from feature-packed 4K action cameras to cheap budget options. So which is the best action camera for you – and what features do you need?

The right option depends on what you want to use it for. If you’re a dedicated movie-maker, you’ll be looking for a 4K action camera. If you’re an extreme sports enthusiast who wants to record a portion of a ski run, a bike ride or a kayak sequence, features like loop-record and hands-free voice activation will be useful.

Some action cameras are waterproof to 30mtr right out of the box, others include waterproof housings, others still aren't even splash-proof. Pricier models add data-sets from a fleet of sensors, from GPS and acceleration to temperature and pressure, while others offer only Full HD video. One key difference to look out for is the frames-per-second (fps) for 4K: put simply, the more frames, the smoother the results. However, just as important is the smartphone app that accompanies most action cameras. These can vary from basic to offering the latest in automated editing and sharing.

For now, GoPro is the market leader in almost every area, but its products come with a high price. Could you save money by ditching a few niceties? Sure. In fact, you could save 50% if you're happy with basic video without image stabilisation or any fancy new tech.

Whatever kind of adventurer you are, there's an action camera for you. Here are the best action cams right now: 

1. GoPro Hero7 Black
2. GoPro HERO6 Black
3. Yi 4K+ Action Camera
4. Sony FDR-X3000 Action Camera
5. Olfi One Five