Best bridge camera 2019: 10 cameras that pack huge zoom lenses

Looking for the best bridge camera? With huge zoom lenses and DSLR-style handling, they’re a popular choice for many. Here’s our pick of the top ten models out there.

Bridge cameras are a versatile and affordable alternative to DSLRs. They offer many of the same manual controls (as well as a host of easy-to-use auto modes) plus a huge built-in zoom lens that covers everything from wide-angle to super-telephoto photography. 

This makes bridge cameras a great all-on-one solution, especially if you want to travel relatively light, as you’ll have one camera that’s great for shooting expansive landscapes as well as tightly framed subjects like wildlife.

There are two important differences to be aware of, though. The first is that bridge cameras have much smaller sensors than DSLRs or mirrorless cameras, so most can’t match those models for picture quality. If that’s your key concern, stick with one of these options.

The second is that the lens is non-removable on a bridge camera, so although it can handle a wide range of subjects you can’t swap to a macro lens for close-ups, for example, or a super-wide-angle lens, or a fast prime lens for low-light photography.

If you’re not quite sure what kind of camera you need, read our essential guide: What camera should I buy?

Bridge cameras do, however, give you a lot of camera for your money, and they’re a great stepping stone for photographers who want to move on from simple point-and-shoot cameras. There are also now a few models that have larger sensors and deliver better picture quality, and which come a lot closer to the performance of a DSLR.

This is our pick of the best bridge cameras you can buy right now…

Great value option: Panasonic Lumix FZ300 / FZ330

Constant f/2.8 aperture and 4K video make this a great buy

Sensor: 1/2.3-inch CMOS, 12.1MP | Lens: 25-600mm, f/2.8 | Monitor: 3-inch vari-angle touchscreen, 1.04m dots | Viewfinder: EVF | Continuous shooting: 10fps | Movies: 4K | User level: Beginner/intermediate

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