3D may not have taken as strong a hold as everyone thought, but that didn’t stop us from finding the best 3D cameras to help you get the most unique photography experience possible. However, it can be difficult to find high-quality 3D cameras, especially since they’re not as popular today. To find the best 3D cameras, we purchased 10 different models and tested them to see how they performed when it came to features like image quality, app compatibility and overall design quality. We use this same process when determining the best video cameras.
After taking plenty of 3D pictures and video, we found that the Fujifilm FinePix 3D W3 is the best 3D camera money can buy today. It features dual image sensors and dual lenses to create a true 3D experience. It’s also designed with protection in mind and performs well in both bright and dim light.
Top 5 Best 3D Cameras Compared
#1 Fujifilm FinePix Real 3D W3 Camera
Award: Top Pick/Best Overall
WHY WE LIKE IT: The Fujifilm FinePix Real 3D W3 camera makes use of dual lenses and dual image sensors to create realistic 3D photographs, which is a top-performing design for this type of photography. It also features a 3D-enabled display, which is unique for cameras in this category.
The Fujifilm FinePix Real 3D W3 is the successor to the disappointing FinePix W1, and it brings a lot more to the table that’s worth checking out. Most 3D cameras still use a single image sensor that simply splits the image and digitally creates the 3D effect. The FinePix W3 mimics the way your brain works by combining images with both dual lenses and dual image sensors. The end result is the most realistic 3D photographs of any of the cameras on our list. You can check out the best digital camera to compare features.
The camera’s display is lenticular, meaning it displays everything in 3D without the need for 3D glasses. Other design elements keep the camera protected – like the sliding front panel – but the overall design sometimes makes it easy to block the lenses with your fingers if you’re not careful. You can also shoot 2D images and video on the FinePix W3, but the quality isn’t anything to write home about, with only 10 megapixels of resolution. It’s pretty clear that this camera was made for 3D and 3D alone. This is not what you want if you are looking for the best point shoot camera.
#2 Vuze XR Camera
Award: Honorable Mention/Best 3D Camera for VR
WHY WE LIKE IT: The Vuze XR is compact, easy to use and offers both 3D and 360-degree image and video modes. If you’re looking to create video for VR and 3D applications, this camera is the best choice for you.
The Vuze XR is one of the most unique cameras on our list because it can shoot photos and video in two distinct modes: 3D or 360-degree. If you want to shoot in 3D, simply extend the lenses so they are both forward facing. If you want to shoot in 360 mode, you can orient the lenses within the camera housing so they are facing away from each other. There’s only one other camera on our list (the Insta360 EVO) that can accomplish this, but we liked the Vuze XR more. You can also check out the best waterproof cameras for something more rugged.
For starters, you can shoot video up to 5.7K resolution at 30 frames per second. You also get an 18 megapixel sensor for still images. The images we capture with this camera were all crisp and clean, with the exception of captures in dim lighting. The Vuze is also super easy to use. All the buttons are marked clearly on the camera and you can even control it remotely using the Android or iOS app on your smartphone, something that you don’t find on all 3D cameras.
#3 Insta360 One X Camera
Award: Best Value/Best 3D Camera for Real Estate
WHY WE LIKE IT: The Insta360 One X is probably the most portable camera on our list and allows for real-time WiFi transfer and live streaming functionality. With these features, this camera is perfect for traveling professionals like real estate agents.
If you’re a real estate agent looking for a camera to create 3D virtual tours of properties, the Insta360 One X is the camera for you. After all, you folks don’t need the best underwater camera. However, that’s not to say that it doesn’t work well in other applications like sports and travel. Any images and video you take on the One X are bound to come out looking amazing, with 5.7K video resolution and 18 megapixel still image resolution. Unfortunately, you can only shoot in 360-degree mode, with no option to go stereoscopic. This is the biggest downfall of the One X.
Fortunately, its ease of use, portable design and overall convenience for use on the go quickly outshine that particular downside. The Insta360 smartphone app is super sleek and allows you to edit your content on the fly. You can even mark points of interest in your videos and the video will automatically pan to those spots when the viewer reaches that point of the content. This is an excellent feature for real estate agents who want to highlight special portions of the houses they’re trying to sell. These 3D cameras are a far cry from the best webcams, even if they do kind of look like them.
#4 Weeview SID 3D Camera
Award: Best Budget/Best Portable 3D Camera
WHY WE LIKE IT: The Weeview SID 3D is made for portability. Measuring in at only 3 inches wide and 1.5 inches tall, this is by far the smallest 3d camera on our list, making it perfect for anyone looking to shoot 3D on the go.
If you’re looking for a camera that you can hardly tell is there, the SID 3D is the camera for you. It’s ultra small, which makes you wonder how it can still produce such high quality images and video. Unfortunately, the small size can sometimes make the camera more difficult to handle (especially if you have larger hands), but Weeview also sells a kit with a gimbal that makes day-to-day operation much easier.
Another stellar feature of this 3D camera is its battery life, especially when compared to other cameras on our list, some of which use non-rechargeable batteries. With a rated 150 hours of battery life on the SID 3D, you won’t have to worry about running out of juice in the middle of filming. Also, check out the best mirrorless camera to learn more about these devices.
#5 Insta360 EVO Camera
Award: Best Image Stabilization/Best 3D Camera for Travel
WHY WE LIKE IT: The Insta360 EVO features a unique foldable design that allows you to take both stereoscopic and 360-degree pictures and video. It’s just a little bigger than the Weeview SID 3D camera on our list, making it the perfect traveling companion for all your adventures.
Like its direct competitor the Vuze XR, the Insta360 EVO is made for people who want the option to shoot in both 360-degrees and 3D. It offers a unique design where the lenses can be unfolded for 3D shooting and folded back up for 360-degree shooting. And while the EVO does this well enough, it still doesn’t stack up to the Vuze XR, which we found much easier to operate overall. This is mainly due to the fact that the process of opening and closing the lenses with the EVO was more difficult than it should be because of the sub-par latching system.
However, the EVO still made our list because of its stellar image quality (up to 5.7K video and 18 megapixel stills), excellent FlowState image stabilization and best-of-class mobile app. Because of these features and its ultra-portability, this camera is the best choice for anyone looking to document their adventures in the most unique way possible. Speaking of adventure, read about the best cheap vlogging camera for YouTube. Then check out the best vlogging camera list.
How We Decided
Buying a new 3D camera is all about image quality, much like any other kind of camera. This is why we weighted image quality higher than any other feature we considered. The best 3D cameras use dual image sensors to create a true 3D experience, but that’s a rare feature to find. Most of these cameras use a single image sensor and digitally create the 3D effect. For those options, we made sure they had at least 15 megapixels for still image quality. When it comes to video resolution, we gave preference to cameras that recorded at 4K resolution or higher.
When it comes to design, we didn’t include any cameras that were bulky and oversized. Most of the cameras on our list can easily fit in your pocket and make excellent traveling companions. We also gave preference to cameras that work seamlessly with smartphone apps for greater convenience.
3D Cameras Buying Guide
The Most Important Features to Consider
- Image Quality – Traditionally, image quality on cameras is purely a numbers game. The higher the number, the better the image quality. This remains true for 3D cameras, even with the added component of 3D functionality. The best 3D cameras have at least 10 megapixels of still image resolution and at least 4K resolution for videos.
- App Compatibility – The latest and greatest 3D cameras can connect to your smartphone for additional functionality like real-time editing and live streaming to YouTube and Facebook.
- Compact Design – If you’re going to shoot in 3D, you’ll want to be able to do it anywhere you go. One of the best features of modern 3D cameras is their portability and compact designs. If it can’t fit in your pocket, you should think twice about making the purchase.
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