Shopping for a camera doesn't have to be super complicated, and the Canon PowerShot S100 has gotten some of the best reviews around since it came out in 2011. But, it costs $400 on Amazon, a price many are simply not willing to pay. Unfortunately, most of the best point and shoot style cameras out there are in the $300 range, with the S100 going for more on account of its superior quality.
When shopping for below $250 cameras, there are often tradeoffs to be made in features and/or quality. The S100 is so great because of the images it produces, and especially in low light, it performs well. That is one of the ways to tell how good a camera is because good lighting is almost always hard to come by. A couple of other things to look for in a quality point and shoot cameras are optical image stabilization as opposed to digital image stabilization and optical zoom capability. These are simply measures that tell you if images will really look good or if they are simply digitally enhanced. Of course, all digital images are enhanced, but optical zoom and image stabilization are better ways of doing these things than digitally. Start the slideshow to see more great cameras that won't break your wallet.