The Top 10 Must-Have Cameras Of 2011

sai tools holiday gift guide cameras

Welcome to the SAI: Tools 10 x 10 Holiday Gift Guide! We’re picking the 10 best products from 10 different categories to round out your shopping list this year.

As part of our final week in the series we’re hitting the best cameras you can buy right now.

You’ll recognise plenty of manufacturer names like Canon, who continues to put some of the best consumer and professional grade cameras, and Sony, whose Cyber-shot line is a staple in the camera world.

Read on for our favourite cameras.

Canon PowerShot ELPH 300 HS

We confess we're big fans of Canon. This point-and-shoot camera delivers the goods for someone wanting to take quality photos on the cheap.

It shoots at 12.1 megapixels, it offers 5X optical zoom, and it's small and light enough to take with you everywhere.

Price: $172

Flip UltraHD Video Camera

This is the perfect video camera for someone wanting a casual way to capture everyday video. It's not perfect or professional-grade, but it's fantastically usable. It shoots 8 hours of HD footage on solid state storage.

Flip may be dead, but snap up what's left while they last!

Price: $170

Panasonic HDC-TM90K

If you want a wide-angle shot, this is the camera for you. The 28mm lens will pack more detail into a background than any other handheld camcorder. Full 1080p quality recording makes this one

Price: $300

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX9V

Despite its small form factor, this Cyber-shot has a 16x optical zoom, 1080p video capabilities, and even some 3D photography capabilities. On top of it all, there's an embedded GPS unit to geotag your photos and videos.

Price: $298

Nikon D3100

Those of you wanting to front some more cash and get something a little more high-end will be pretty happy with this Nikon. 14 megapixels, full 1080p video capability, and a nice big 3-inch monitor make it easy to take and view great photos and videos. Pros will be happy with the manual settings and the newbies will still be comfortable with all the automatic options it has.

Price: $599

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FP7

If your two biggest priorities are portability and image quality, this is your camera. It comes in a few different colours, but it packs a walloping 16 megapixels and a large touchscreen LCD.

Price: $149

Canon EOS Rebel T3

The latest from Canon's Rebel line has no shortage of features. It's aimed at experienced photographers who will appreciate the ability to shoot in low light and want improved autofocus capabilities.

The camera also supports Eye-Fi SD cards -- these are special SD cards outfitted with a wi-fi transmitter to support uploading images directly from the camera. Pretty cool!

Price: $499

Canon VIXIA HF S21

This 64 GB internal drive can capture up to 24 hours of HD footage. There's even 2 SD card slots if you need more storage. Canon's face detection technology will also track people's faces to make sure that they stay crisp and in focus.

Price: around $879

Sony HDR-CX560V

Independent filmmakers take note -- this camera has a mode called 'CinemaTone,' designed to duplicate shooting with film. It captures full HD video at 1920x1080 and can even take an impressive 12 megapixel still photo.

Price: $998

Canon EOS 5D Mark II

Here's the Lexus of the photography world. Its stellar image quality even shook up the video production world to the point that the season finale of House was shot with it last year.

Still photos check in at 21.1 megapixels, and unfortunately that price is for the body only -- you'll have to buy your own lens.

Price: $2,238.99

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