Cameras:

Best compact digital cameras of 2014

Updated

Whether you need to be discreet or just want to travel light, a camera's size and weight are important. Our top compact-camera picks run the gamut of megapixel counts, features, and prices, but all the models have two things in common: each fits comfortably into a jacket pocket and weighs 8 ounces or less, even with batteries and media installed. And they're pretty stylish little devices, too.

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Sony Cyber-shot RX100 III

The Sony Cyber-shot RX100 III is an overall great camera that delivers significant improvements over the RX100 II, but not everyone will think it's worth the extra cost.

4 stars Excellent

Best compact megazoom

Canon PowerShot SX280 HS

A new processor leads to less noise at higher ISOs and faster performance, and built-in Wi-Fi lets you shoot and share. But neither helps this camera's battery life.

Price: $250.77 Check prices

0 stars Not yet rated

Best enthusiast compact

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 II - digital camera

The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 II delivers excellent photos, speedy performance, and a broad feature set in an attractive, compact package.

Price: $549.00 - $569.00 Check prices

4 stars Excellent The best enthusiast compact to date

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100

It's been a long wait, but Sony finally delivers a pocketable camera with a large sensor and fast lens.

Price: $49.95 - $749.00 Check prices

4 stars Excellent

Olympus Stylus 1

For those who crave an enthusiast compact with more zoom range, the Olympus Stylus 1 should be high on your list for its excellent balance of performance, design, and features.

Price: $599.00 - $799.00 Check prices

4 stars Excellent

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX1

A camera designed for image quality purists first and foremost, the RX1 proves that a full-frame compact makes perfect sense — provided you can justify the outlay.

Price: $2,999.00 Check prices

5 stars Spectacular Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX1

Canon PowerShot G7 X

The Canon PowerShot G7 X would jump from very good to excellent if it could just pick up the pace.

3.5 stars Very good

Fujifilm X100S

A great enthusiast compact for manual-focusing fans.

Price: $999.00 - $1,893.00 Check prices

3.5 stars Very good

Nikon Coolpix S9700

Nikon Coolpix S9700 - digital camera

Outside of some design quibbles, the Nikon Coolpix S9700 puts big zoom power and nice photo quality (snugly) in your pocket.

3.5 stars Very good