There used to be a lot more choice when it came to the best cameras under £200, but sadly everything is going up in price at the moment. Even so, if you know where to look (and this guide will show you!), there are still some great deals to be had.
One of the reasons we get some good camera deals is that as new models are released, the older ones get cheaper. Manufacturers often won't discontinue a line straight away, especially if it was really popular which means there's an opportunity to grab yourself a bargain.
If you're looking for an even cheaper camera, we've also got a guide on the best camera under £100 and you'll be surprised by how many there are on the list. For now though, we're looking at the slightly more advanced instant film cameras that include different shooting modes and compact cameras that offer great image quality and a few very useful features.
Most of the cameras below don't feature the most up-to-date technology and have smallish sensors but that doesn't mean they can't still take good photos. On the plus side, they're all pretty compact (except for perhaps the Polaroid OneStep+ but it's such a nice design we can allow it.)
In this list, we reckon we've got the perfect cameras for anyone who's shopping with a budget of less than $200. Due to supply chain issues, many of the cameras we would usually include are currently hard to get hold of or have been discontinued entirely so for now, you'll notice the list mainly includes some of the best instant cameras but we still think they're great fun.
Everything here should be available for less than £200, though prices do fluctuate from time to time. So, let’s take a look at our favorite cameras in this price bracket.
This tiny camera really does do it all - no bigger than a credit card it can take digital photos, print Instax-style photos or print photos you've taken on your phone. There are quite a few unmarked buttons but once you get your head around what each of them does it's a really easy camera to operate and a pleasure to use. We've always been fans of the Fujifilm Instax range but this one combines the advantages of digital cameras with the novelty of instant film cameras to create a product that is well worth the money. We love the classic analog camera look Fujifilm has gone with, it almost feels like a bit of a nod to its X-T100 range only designed to use in portrait mode rather than landscape.
Read our full Fujifilm Instax Mini Evo review
Instant film cameras are always a hit at parties, and the Fujifilm Instax Square SQ1 is a fine example available at a great price. With a click of the shutter button, it'll create 6.2cm square prints that look fantastic, with punchy colours and less of the tendency towards overexposure that has plagued previous Instax cameras.
The thing to remember about instant film is that it is of course an ongoing cost, so while you're paying $120 or so for the camera, you'll have to keep buying refills every time you run out. Also, this is a very basic point-and-shoot model, which is arguably all you need in an instant camera, though some users may lament the lack of basic quality-of-life features like a self-timer. Still, for the price this is loads of fun, and a wonderfully inexpensive way to make physical images that last.
Not only can you take photos using the Instax Hybrid Mini LiPlay but it can also print photos from your phone. Small enough to fit in your pocket its compact design makes it perfect for having on you at all times. Featuring an LCD screen and a selfie mirror on the front so you can make sure you're looking your best, Fujifilm really has thought of it all. Connect it to the LiPlay app on your phone so you can edit your photos and add things such as colored frames or apply a filter for a bit of fun. Even though the photos print out onto Instax Mini film, you can also choose to just keep the pictures stored on a micro SD card. Choose from Blush Gold, Elegant Black or Stone White depending on your style and it's time to get snapping. It has a rechargeable battery, a built-in flash and three shortcut buttons so you can save your favorite settings. We haven't had a chance to test one yet, but with all it's nifty features we're sure it will find its way onto our best instant film camera guide.
The Polaroid Go is undoubtedly the cutest camera on this list if not, the cutest camera ever. It's no bigger than the palm of your hand and prints micro square images. Instax film is a little cheaper and the prints are bigger but if you want something that you can fit in your pocket this is the one to go for. It can be charged via USB and it has a range of features such as double exposure which are really fun to use. It would make a great first camera for kids or adults for use at festivals, parties or weddings as a way of creating tangible mementos.
Read our full Polaroid Go review
This no-nonsense, pocket-sized point-and-shoot is perfect for beginners or anyone looking for a phone camera upgrade. It features a 16.15-megapixel 1/2.3-inch sensor so you won't be able to print your images very big but they're still perfect for sharing on social media. It has a zoom range equivalent to 28-140mm on a full-frame camera and a 6x digital zoom if you need to get that little bit closer. One of the downsides is it doesn't come with a viewfinder and the screen is hard to see on a sunny day but otherwise, it's a great buy for the price.
If you're after a reasonably priced instant camera that doubles up as a portable printer for your smartphone or tablet, the Canon Zoemini S2 does all the above. It comes with several different filters including vivid, vintage and black & white so you can add a stylistic effect in-camera, it had automatic white balance and exposure which simplifies the shooting process giving you more time to think about composition. Choose to have either a white border or a borderless image depending on your personal preference. If you would prefer not to print images, they can be sent directly to your phone by Bluetooth and a Micro SD card slowly makes it possible to save hundreds of photos to view at a later date. Generally Zink paper isn't as good as the film found in the Instax but when looked after correctly it'll remain in good quality for years.