360 cameras are gaining popularity, and it’s no surprise, they are some of the most versatile filmmaking and photographic tools that money can buy.
Whether you’re looking to capture epic action shots with an invisible selfie stick or create virtual tours for a real estate business, 360 is the way to go. What’s more, you can even relive moments in VR, if that’s your kind of thing.
There is a wide range of capable cameras available at wildly different budgets. Each has its own appeal, so the choice really comes down to what you want to spend and what you want the camera for. Something small you can slip in your pocket, take on a jaunt, or an action camera that can survive being dropped, bashed and used underwater?
Take a look at our list of the best 360 cameras available, whatever your budget is.
Our Top Picks:
1. Best overall
Insta360 is the brand to beat when it comes to 360 cameras, and the X3 is its most refined, feature packed and easy-to-use option to date.
- Class-leading software
- Great video and photo fidelity
- Improved low light and UI
- Not a huge leap in video performance over the One X2
The Insta360 X3 is extremely easy to recommend. A combination of a practical form factor, superb software and a much-improved user interface makes it a great starting point for just about anyone.
It has massively improved photo capabilities compared to its predecessor, and video fidelity is up there with the best options on the market. It’s waterproof and rugged, making it an ideal companion for your next adventure.
2. Runner Up
GoPro does action cameras better than anyone, and it turns out to be pretty good at 360-degree video too. The Max is a beastly option.
- The user-friendly video editing system
- Waterproof and durable build
- Excellent footage results
- Touchscreen so that you can see what you’re capturing
- One of the more expensive 360 camera options
GoPro’s expertise when it comes to action cameras has come to bear brilliantly on the Max — it’s great for filming whatever activities you’d want it to, and is also adaptable. When you need 360 footage, it’ll produce the goods, but can also film all sorts of other quality videos.
Like other cameras in the GoPro range, the GoPro Max is a flexible and durable camera. This device is waterproof up to 16 feet and can be used underwater and with some abuse – making it suitable for use with watersports.
Insta360 One RS
3. A Top Pick
The Insta360 One RS manages to pull off being a jack of all trades without much in the way of compromise.
- A multitude of capture modes and footage options
- Easy to use free editing software
- Swappable lenses and mounting options
- The 360-module itself hasn’t seen any upgrades
The Insta360 One RS improves further on the modular marvel that is the One R. The 360 module itself remains unchanged, which is no bad thing, as it was already superb. However, the new model adds an additional microphone, a beefier battery pack and faster Wi-Fi connectivity.
The Insta360 One RS manages to pull off being a jack of all trades without much in the way of compromise. A brilliant little camera with a lot to offer and plenty of highlights too.
Insta360 One RS 1-inch 360 Edition
4. Strong Contender
The Insta360 One RS 1-inch 360 edition is a more premium offering, co-engineered with Leica, but still maintaining compatibility with Insta360’s modular system.
- Excellent low light performance
- Sharper video with better colours
- Clever use of the modular system
- The microSD card is hard to access
When it comes to low light performance, the 1-Inch 360 Edition takes things to the next level. The results are dramatically better than the standard One RS 360 module, and this is the area in which the new module really shines.
With the higher price point, it’s a bit of a niche camera. However, if you’re shooting anything commercially, then the upgraded image quality is well worth the price of admission.
Samsung Gear 360 (2017)
5. Also Great
Samsung’s Gear cameras are great inexpensive options, and it will have you filming awesome content easily.
- Quick image and video processing
- USB Type-C charging/interface port
- Great ergonomics and compact design
- Only compatible with Samsung phones and Apple iPhones
The stitching of images and videos is surprisingly impressive and a much speedier process than some others – especially when using the Action Director software on PC.
It’s a bit long in the tooth now, but it can be found at some serious discount prices, making it an excellent option for those on a budget.