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The Best Kids’ Cameras Turn Your Offspring Into the Next Ansel Adams Or Annie Leibowitz

You'll have a budding photographer, in a snap.

A great kids’ camera helps children explore their world. They can look at the world more carefully through the lens of a camera while creating a kind of visual diary along the way. Photos can serve as reminders of where we’ve been, who we’ve met, and what we’ve done, allowing us to relive experiences over and over again. Kids cameras let your little photographer get excited about exploring the world, tap into their creative side, and learn how to pre-visualize an image or video in their mind’s eye. But to survive the rough-and-tumble demands of the average child, a camera for kids or toddlers needs a few extra qualifications. 

To choose the best camera for your kid, consider things like megapixels and frame rate, but keep in mind that the real name of the game is durability. Little hands drop things all the time, so a kids camera that can’t take the occasional tumble is a no go. Consider a waterproof camera or one that prints photos instantly, like a polaroid. We break each unit’s benefits and weaknesses down so that you, patron of the arts that you are, can get your kid creating in the snap of a flash. Here’s to a future where you get to actually hold on to your phone. 

This easy to use instant camera has a touchscreen display, and a 3.4mm lens. Kids simply press the shutter button to capture the image, then print the photo on the spot. You use zinc Zero Ink printing technology, which eliminates the need for ink and toners. The higher price point makes it a better option for older kids

This 5 megapixel camera has a dedicated switching button that makes it great for selfies, with 256 MB of built-in memory to store them. Kids can play music thanks to the built-in MP3 player, built-in speaker, and included headphones, but parents can set limits on playing games, or disable access entirely. The downside is the picture quality, which isn't exactly that of a Leica.

At about the size of a smartphone, this lightweight, portable camera and printer set goes right into your pocket. It's literally point, shoot, and print. The photo quality is questionable, so this is great for younger kids who aren't too choosy.

This is a durable, sturdy, and fun HD video and still camera for kids, with the bells and whistles they've come to expect from mom and dad's phone. It has time-lapse, stop motion, burst mode, fast- and slow-motion and frames, and a rechargeable battery that lasts 2.5 hours. The 32GB microSD card is not included. This is the HD camera for your adventurous kid, because you can mount it on bike or a helmet, and has a waterproof case.

A camera on your kid's wrist? Hell yes.Think of this as a starter camera slash watch for your kids. It teaches them to tell time, has games and two cameras that let them take pictures, videos, and plenty of selfies. It has a pedometer, to encourage your kid to be active. The Kidizoom Smartwatch is deal for kids ages four to 12. Though it can withstand some sweat, it's not fully waterproof, which is a huge bummer.

Fujifilm’s pack film is the most affordable in the space (search Amazon and you can find it for around 50 cents a piece), and the camera comes in five fun colors. A selfie mirror, close-up attachment, and flash all allow for a great variation in shots, with an easy point-and-shoot setup.

While the 2.4-inch rear LCD screen shows your son or daughter exactly what he or she is capturing with stills and video, it’s the rear-facing selfie camera, which shows a live view in that same LCD, that really impressed us. We also thought the dual viewfinders, which provided equal comfort for right- and left-eye-dominant kids, was an ingenious addition. A 256-megabyte memory is built in, but parents can upgrade it to outlast summer camp though separately purchased MicroSD cards.

This camera is built to offer the best of all worlds: the novelty of an instant camera and the flexibility of a digital one. Instead of instant film, it captures photos on a microSD card and prints them on Kodak's inkless Zink photo paper.It gets 40 prints per charge of a rechargeable battery, can capture color and black and white images, and produce smudge-, water-, and tear-proof pictures. While it's very simple to operate — charge, load, point, and shoot — the Printomatic doesn't offer a ton of tweaks for budding photogs. It's best for younger kids and true beginners; those with some picture-taking experience probably will find it too simplistic.

We had to double-check, but this supposed child’s toy in fact takes 8-megapixel images, a size which smartphones only surpassed in the past few years. It also captures 1080p high-definition video, while including a 4-times digital zoom for ultimate framing control. But the biggest consideration is that it protects these quality components inside a silicon-covered shell for super impact absorption and security of grip. Finally, its included, rechargeable lithium-ion battery is so much better than running through disposables. Photo purists may criticize the fact that it doesn't have a traditional viewfinder, instead only including the LCD screen on the back.

The old adage about losing your head if it weren’t attached to your body should give any parent pause when purchasing electronics for his child. Cocac solved this problem with its kid’s camera, allowing you to literally clip it to your kiddo, making it great for adventurous youths who need their hands free to get to the best vistas and highest reaches. A 12-megapixel image is nothing to scoff at, and it leads our list as far as overall size. The same goes for its 1080p video, which is tied for the highest resolution of our options.

The Ourlife kids waterproof camera is an action camera that won’t break the bank if, somehow, it gets broken. Its helmet- or bike-mounted design allows for some crazy point-of-view angles at the skatepark, which is captured at crystal clear 720p at 30 frames per second (fps). It also works as a standalone camera, snapping five-megapixel stills. While we raved about another waterproof camera above, the Ourlife goes even deeper to a max depth of 30 feet. One of the reasons why its competitor, the GoPro, takes such great footage is because of its vibration reduction. This unit certainly could have benefitted from some. Still, as an affordable alternative, you can overlook a little image shakiness.

This waterproof camera can withstand immersion up to 33 feet deep, not to mention the drops and dings that are likely to happen when it's in the hands of a kid. Your kid can use at the pool. At the lake. During a hike. Its built-in WiFi lets photos sync directly to your phone, eliminating wait time and frustration. Autofocus and 18 different shooting modes make it a good option for beginners.

This sleek sliding digital camera prints photos directly from the camera onto 2 x 3 inch sticker paper. It's rechargeable, meaning you'll never have to worry about batteries, and has autoflash, autofocus, and built-in editing abilities. The coolest feature is the photo booth mode, which lets you print 2 photos on a single sheet.

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