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Top five bridge cameras for 2017

By Ryan Shaw

Our pick of the very best bridge cameras tested at Which? in 2017. All selected cameras produce high-quality photos, videos and are simple to use.

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The best bridge camera for you

Bridge cameras bridge the gap between compact digital cameras and DSLRs. Easier to use than a DSLR, they offer more advanced features and manual controls than you find on standard compact camera. They have versatile lenses with a powerful optical zoom capability – some models offer whooping zooms of up to 50x.

This makes them a good choice for photographers who like the simplicity of a compact camera but want more scope in lens focal range and creative manual features, without the fuss of multiple lenses like with a DSLR.

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Best bridge cameras of 2017

Lowest price (in stock) £1,368.83
Which? score 78%
Reviewed Aug 2016
Best Buy
Picture quality:
5 out of 5
Image stabilisation effectiveness:
5 out of 5
Low light image quality:
4 out of 5
Video quality:
5 out of 5
Ease of use:
4 out of 5
Resolution:
Member exclusive
Weight:
Member exclusive
Optical zoom magnification:
Member exclusive
Viewfinder:
Member exclusive
Video resolution:
Member exclusive

Less than 12 months after the release of its predecessor, this premium bridge camera features a large sensor and a long zoom to get you close to the action. Packed with features, it offers fantastic image quality, but at a hefty price. Is this camera worthy of the cost? Here's what our experts had to say.

Lowest price (in stock) £475.00
Which? score 78%
Reviewed Aug 2016
Best Buy
Picture quality:
5 out of 5
Image stabilisation effectiveness:
5 out of 5
Low light image quality:
4 out of 5
Video quality:
4 out of 5
Ease of use:
4 out of 5
Resolution:
Member exclusive
Weight:
Member exclusive
Optical zoom magnification:
Member exclusive
Viewfinder:
Member exclusive
Video resolution:
Member exclusive

This premium compact camera is a great alternative to a larger DSLR or compact system camera. It fits in your pocket and it takes high-quality video and photos, but what are the controls like to use? Our experts ran it through a gauntlet of tests to find out.

Lowest price (in stock) £449.00
Which? score 78%
Reviewed Jul 2014
Best Buy
Picture quality:
5 out of 5
Image stabilisation effectiveness:
4 out of 5
Low light image quality:
5 out of 5
Video quality:
5 out of 5
Ease of use:
4 out of 5
Resolution:
Member exclusive
Weight:
Member exclusive
Optical zoom magnification:
Member exclusive
Viewfinder:
Member exclusive
Video resolution:
Member exclusive

A premium compact camera with a large price tag, this camera includes a 1.5-inch sensor, which is larger than those you'd find on some DSLR models. It promises superior low light photos, but can it deliver? Our test lab has the expert verdict on this bridge camera.

Lowest price (in stock) £679.00
Which? score 77%
Reviewed Oct 2015
Best Buy
Picture quality:
4 out of 5
Image stabilisation effectiveness:
5 out of 5
Low light image quality:
4 out of 5
Video quality:
5 out of 5
Ease of use:
4 out of 5
Resolution:
Member exclusive
Weight:
Member exclusive
Optical zoom magnification:
Member exclusive
Viewfinder:
Member exclusive
Video resolution:
Member exclusive

More of an iterative update than a full-on refresh, this high-end compact camera suits video enthusiasts, thanks to the 4K video recording. Photos have a balanced exposure with good colour accuracy, and the updated electronic viewfinder is sharper and clearer than ever before. Our extensive tests reveal all.

Lowest price (in stock) £561.62
Which? score 76%
Reviewed Sep 2014
Best Buy
Picture quality:
4 out of 5
Image stabilisation effectiveness:
3 out of 5
Low light image quality:
4 out of 5
Video quality:
5 out of 5
Ease of use:
5 out of 5
Resolution:
Member exclusive
Weight:
Member exclusive
Optical zoom magnification:
Member exclusive
Viewfinder:
Member exclusive
Video resolution:
Member exclusive

With a 20.1-megapixel 1-inch sensor, 16x zoom and 4K video recording, this is an impressive bridge camera. It takes all the components of a typical bridge camera and claims to go one better. Our expert test lab has the verdict on what matters most - its picture quality.

Pricing, recommendations and test scores correct of November, 2017.

Not found the product for you? Browse all our bridge camera reviews.

We test cameras more thoroughly than anyone else

Our tests go further than those carried out by other organisations, and because Which? is independent and does not accept advertising or freebies, you can trust our reviews to give you the full, honest and impartial truth about a product.

Which? tests more than 100 cameras a year from brands such as Canon, Olympus, Panasonic and Sony.  We put every model through our rigorous lab tests to make sure we can recommend the best camera for you.

There's nothing more important with a camera than the quality of the pictures it takes and that's why when we test cameras we take indoor shots, outdoor shots and put the flash and zoom through its paces. This lets us give you clear advice on which camera can take superb photos and videos, or which ones will give you blurred lines and sub-standard quality. 

But we also go beyond picture quality. Will the automatic scene modes and auto-focus give you a decent snap? Can you see what you're shooting on the viewfinder and how easy is the camera to use? We have the answers to your questions.

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