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The 7 Best Camera Brands - Winter 2023 Reviews

Best Camera Brands

With so many different camera brands offering a wide array of high-quality cameras, it can be hard to narrow down the best of the best. Besides, with camera technology as advanced as it is these days, a good camera from any brand will get the job done. The upshot of that is that choosing one over another mostly comes down to personal preference and needs. Still, each brand has its own quirks and differences, so it's good to be aware of what each camera brand brings to the table. 

We've bought and tested over 75 cameras from over 12 different brands, and below are our recommendations for the best camera brands to buy from. The brands aren’t ordered by rank or position; the first brand listed isn’t necessarily our top pick overall, and the last brand isn’t the worst. Instead, we’ve tried to list the brands by popularity and market share, as well as keeping brands with similar audiences together to make it easier to find what best suits your needs. If you're looking for your first camera, you should also check out our recommendations for the best cameras for beginners. Otherwise, you can take a look at our picks for the best cameras for photography or the best cameras overall.

  1. Canon

    If you know anything about cameras, you've probably already heard of Canon. The company has been making cameras since the 1930s and remains one of the leading manufacturers in the market today, often pitted against its long-time rival Nikon. Beloved by professional photographers for their professional services and customer service, Canon typically makes cameras with robust ergonomic designs, intuitive menu systems, and some of the best autofocus on the market. Its DSLR lineup ranges from beginner cameras like the Canon EOS Rebel T7 / EOS 2000D to popular professional models like the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV. In recent years, Canon has moved increasingly into the mirrorless market with models like the affordable, entry-level Canon EOS M50 Mark II or full-frame options like the Canon EOS R or the portable Canon EOS RP.

    However, the best Canon camera we've tested is the Canon EOS R6. Introduced as a more affordable alternative to the flagship Canon EOS R5, this full-frame mirrorless model is a great choice for enthusiast hybrid shooters. With a fantastic autofocus system and up to 20 fps burst shooting (or 12 fps when using the mechanical shutter), it's excellent for sports or fast-moving subjects. Plus, its 20MP sensor is great for low-light shooting, with plenty of dynamic range for landscapes and high-contrast scenes. And that's not even mentioning in-body image stabilization (IBIS) and internal 10-bit 4k 60 fps recording for video shooters. All in all, this is an excellent, well-rounded model for Canon enthusiasts. 

    See our review

  2. Sony

    Widely known for its TVssoundbarsheadphones, and speakers, Sony has also been producing cameras since the 1990s, growing into one of the best-selling camera brands on the market in a short span. With roots in making electronic components like semiconductors and sensors, Sony is also one of the world's largest manufacturers of image sensors—in fact, you'll even find Sony-built sensors inside cameras from other brands on this list. Sony's mirrorless camera lineup is primarily marketed under the Alpha brand name, but the company also offers point-and-shoot cameras through its Cyber-shot lineup. Sony cameras are known for their snappy, highly effective autofocus systems and portable bodies. It's also one of the few brands to release the specifications for its proprietary lens mount, giving users a wider variety of third-party lenses to choose from within Sony's E-mount mirrorless system.

    The Sony α7 IV is hands-down the best Sony camera we've tested. This hybrid model improves upon its predecessor, the highly popular Sony α7 III, by updating its video specs to appeal to the demands of current hybrid and video shooters. It also has an upgraded, higher-resolution sensor that makes it an excellent choice for photography of all kinds. With in-body image stabilization, 10-bit 4:2:2 internal recording, excellent autofocus, and a ton of lens options, this is one of the best all-around enthusiast cameras you can get.

    See our review

  3. Nikon

    Nikon is another of the best camera brands with a long history of producing optical devices, cameras, and lenses. One of the pioneering manufacturers of digital cameras throughout the 1990s, Nikon continues to hold its own among the top camera brands. In recent years, the company has pushed further into the realm of mirrorless cameras, though it's still primarily known for its DSLRs, which include beginner models like the Nikon D3500 to enthusiast options like the Nikon D780, as well as consumer point-and-shoots. Its mirrorless lineup has steadily grown, and the company now offers mirrorless models to suit different experience levels, from entry-level models like the Nikon Z 50 and the retro-inspired Nikon Z fc to the pro flagship Nikon Z 9. Nikon is also known for pushing boundaries with some of its cameras, like the Nikon COOLPIX P1000, which has the longest fixed zoom lens on the market.

    If you're interested in Nikon, the Nikon Z 6 II is an excellent hybrid camera and one of the best Nikons we've tested. Nikon cameras have some of the best ergonomics and build quality around, and the Z 6 II is no exception, with incredible handling and intuitive controls. With excellent image quality, a fast max burst rate, built-in stabilization, and some solid video specs, it's a camera that checks a lot of boxes for both photography and video, especially if you're already in the Nikon lens ecosystem.

    See our review

  4. Fujifilm

    As its name suggests, Fujifilm started out manufacturing film in the early twentieth century until it eventually began producing its own cameras in the late 1940s under the 'Fujica' moniker. It was also one of the most successful camera companies to transition from film to digital, and it's now one of the leading producers of APS-C and medium format mirrorless cameras. Its X Series includes entry-level models like the Fujifilm X-T200, mid-range models like the Fujifilm X-T30 II, and even vlogging-oriented models like the Fujifilm X-S10. The company also produces high-end compact cameras like the Fujifilm X100V. What unites many of these models is the brand's old-school approach to design, with retro styling and physical control dials, as well as excellent color science and in-camera processing.

    The Fujifilm X-T4 is the best Fujifilm camera that we've tested. Portable and well-built, this high-end APS-C model offers excellent performance in both photography and video. It's a solid option for vlogs and video, but it's also great for more advanced video projects thanks to excellent internal recording capability and a very effective IBIS system. Besides its video capabilities, it also embodies Fuji's dedication to the art of photography, with amazing out-of-camera image quality, film simulation profiles to help you get creative, and physical exposure dials to give manual shooters more hands-on control.

    See our review

  5. Panasonic

    Panasonic makes everything from TVs and appliances to batteries, headphones, and cameras. Its camera lineup is marketed under the LUMIX brand and is made up primarily of digital mirrorless cameras, from video-oriented ILCs like the Panasonic LUMIX GH5 II to budget bridge cams like the Panasonic LUMIX FZ80. For a long time, Panasonic mainly produced cameras within the Micro Four Thirds system, which the company standardized in collaboration with Olympus. Four Thirds camera sensors are about half the size of full-frame sensors, so they're smaller than APS-C sensors but larger than those typically found on compact point-and-shoot cameras. That gives them more focal reach and allows them to use lenses that are smaller and cheaper than full-frame lenses. More recently, Panasonic has also started producing full-frame cameras thanks to the L-mount Alliance with Leica and Sigma, which all produce L-mount compatible cameras.

    Panasonic's first full-frame camera, the Panasonic Lumix DC-S5, is also one of the best Panasonic cameras we've tested. While the company's still new to the full-frame scene, the S5 proves that Panasonic could have some staying power. Coming in at a relatively affordable price point, this enthusiast model is a great all-arounder with advanced 4k video features, and it's no slouch for still photography, either, especially when it comes to low-light performance. While it isn't the best for faster subjects, with a slow max burst rate and less reliable AF than you get with brands like Sony or Canon, it's still a welcome addition to the market and a successful step in a new direction for Panasonic.

    See our review

  6. Olympus

    Like Fujifilm, Canon, and Nikon, Olympus has been around in some form or another since the 1930s. It was a major player in the days of film, achieving worldwide popularity in the 1970s and 80s with its innovative 'OM System' line of SLRs. In the digital age, Olympus helped standardize the Four Thirds and later Micro Four Thirds systems in collaboration with Panasonic, offering a smaller and more affordable alternative to full-frame and APS-C cameras. In 2021, Olympus's imaging division was acquired by OM Digital Solutions, which has begun releasing cameras under the new brand name 'OM System' in a callback to the company's heyday, starting with the OM System OM-1.

    Of the Olympus cameras we've tested, the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark III is the best of the bunch. It's the ultimate sports and wildlife camera for those who want something more lightweight and portable. It's got a rugged weather-sealed body with fantastic ergonomics and best-in-class image stabilization. On top of that, it has a remarkably fast max burst rate and plenty of cool extra features like a high-resolution composite mode. Of course, it isn't as well-suited to low-light shooting because of its smaller sensor, but this is still an incredibly well-rounded camera for fans of the Micro Four Thirds system.

    See our review


    Like Olympus, Fujifilm, and others, the 'PENTAX' brand name has a long history. It was first used by Asahi Optical in the middle of the twentieth century with the release of the influential Asahi Pentax camera. It was so popular that it prompted Asahi to rebrand as simply 'Pentax'. Like Olympus, Pentax cameras were often innovative and well-regarded throughout the development of SLRs. In the digital age, the company was eventually acquired by RICOH and renamed RICOH Imaging Company, though it still releases DSLRs and medium format cameras under the Pentax brand, as well as compact cameras under its own name, like the RICOH GR III. The brand is one of the few that doesn't offer mirrorless models and remains committed to producing high-quality DSLRs.

    Of those DSLRs, the best we've tested is the PENTAX K-3 Mark III. It's their flagship APS-C camera and, though it comes at a steep price for an APS-C model, it has an incredibly sturdy weather-sealed construction and delivers low-light performance that rivals some full-frame models. In addition, it's got a fantastic IBIS system and excellent battery life. If you're looking for an excellent DSLR for photography, it's one of the best crop-sensor models you can get, in spite of its hefty price tag.

    See our review

Recent Updates

  1. Dec 22, 2022: Brushed up text for clarity and accuracy.

  2. Oct 24, 2022: Replaced the Sony α7 III with the Sony α7 IV; replaced the Nikon D780 with the Nikon Z 6II; and replaced the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III with the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark III.

  3. Feb 01, 2022: Reviewed article for accuracy and clarity.

  4. Jan 11, 2022: Reviewed article for accuracy with no change to recommendations.

  5. Dec 21, 2021: Reviewed article for accuracy; no change to recommendations.

All Reviews

Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best cameras for most people to buy from the best camera brands. We factor in the price, feedback from our visitors, and availability.

If you would like to choose for yourself, here's the list of all of our camera reviews. Be careful not to get too caught up in the details. While no camera is perfect for every use, most offer enough to suit most people's needs. Personal taste, preference, and shooting habits will matter more in your selection.