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The 5 Best Cameras For Photography - Fall 2022 Reviews

Best Cameras For Photography

Most digital cameras now come with advanced video features that would impress any videographer, but the bread and butter of most cameras is still photography. Whether you're looking for the perfect camera to document your travel adventures, a model that can capture beautiful landscapes, or a fast camera to keep up with sports and wildlife, there's no shortage of options out there, including many that are well-rounded enough to suit all manner and styles of photography. What's most important is choosing a camera that fits your needs, budget, and ergonomic preferences.

It's worth noting that a camera's overall performance can vary drastically depending on the lens you use. Your lens influences the amount of light entering the camera, an image's depth of field, autofocus behavior, and stabilization performance, and portability. As a general rule, it's better to invest in a less expensive camera body and higher-quality lenses than to invest in an expensive camera body and cheap lenses.

We've bought and tested over 75 cameras, and below you'll find our recommendations for the best digital cameras for photography. These picks were selected not only based on their overall performance but also their feature set and price. If you're looking for something more specific, check out our list of the best cameras for wildlife photography, the best cameras for landscape photography, or the best cameras for low-light photography.

  1. Best Camera For Photography

    The Canon EOS R6 is the best all-around camera we've tested for photography. It's the more affordable cousin to the flagship pro-grade Canon EOS R5, and it still has plenty to offer for hobbyists and pros alike. Built like a tank, this thing is sturdy, weather-sealed, and it's got a nice large viewfinder and a vari-angle touchscreen to help you shoot from different angles. It doesn't have the highest megapixel count among its peers, but 20 megapixels is more than enough to capture stunning, high-quality photos, and the larger pixels actually gather more light, making this a fantastic option for low-light situations. Top it off with an excellent autofocus system and burst shooting at up to 12 fps (or 20 fps using the electronic shutter), and you've got a highly versatile camera that can do everything from high-contrast landscapes to indoor portraiture to wildlife action shots.

    The only reason you wouldn't be satisfied with 20 megapixels is if you plan on making large-scale prints or you prefer having a bit more leeway to crop in your photos. If that's the case, the Sony α7 IV has a 33-megapixel sensor that's great for this. That said, it's capped at six fps burst shooting in RAW and doesn't feel as good in the hand as the Canon.

    See our review

  2. Best Upper Mid-Range Camera For Photography

    If the Canon EOS R6 is out of your budget, the Sony α7 III is one of the best cameras for photographers for its price, especially now that the more video-capable Sony α7 IV has hit the market. If you're mostly into photography, the a7 III still has plenty to offer, including a still-competitive autofocus system, 10 fps burst shooting, and one of the longest-lasting batteries you'll find on a mirrorless camera. You do lose out on weather-sealing, touch navigation, and Sony's new-and-improved menu system. However, these are small prices to pay for a camera that still holds up remarkably well to newer competition when it comes to image quality.

    If you're looking for slightly better build quality and ergonomics, stretching your budget a little will nab you the Nikon Z 6II, a worthy competitor if you can live with shorter battery life and fewer lens options. The Fujifilm X-T4 is another fantastic all-arounder in this price range, with style for days and much more portability, though that size comes at the cost of image quality because of its smaller APS-C sensor.

    See our review

  3. Best Mid-Range Camera For Photography

    The best mid-range camera we've tested for photography is the Nikon Z 50. Unlike most of our higher-end picks, this camera uses an APS-C sensor, which indirectly influences the camera's depth of field and low-light capability. Unless you're a pro or enthusiast, a crop sensor will still get you high-quality images, and you get the upside of generally cheaper lenses and more portability.

    It's also one of the most well-built and comfortable entry-level cameras we've tested. It's got a large viewfinder that gives you a clear view of your subject and one of the most intuitive user interfaces around. Battery life isn't amazing, however, so if you'd prefer a longer-lasting battery, the Sony α6400 has you covered. The Sony also has slightly better autofocus but isn't as ergonomically satisfying as the Nikon.

    See our review

  4. Best Budget Camera For Photography

    The Canon EOS M50 Mark II is our best all-around budget camera and a versatile starter camera for photography. It's lightweight and portable, with simple controls and a large fully-articulated screen. It doesn't have the biggest viewfinder, but it's nice and sharp. The big downside is just a limited selection of lenses. We're also unlikely to see any new ones as Canon has set aside its M-mount in favor of new APS-C RF-mount cameras like the Canon EOS R10. However, you can easily adapt EF lenses for this camera if the native lenses don't suit your needs.

    If you want an even smaller setup, the Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV is a tad pricier out of the gate but gets you smaller and cheaper Micro Four Thirds lenses with plenty of options to choose from. It also has in-body image stabilization to get clear handheld shots at slower shutter speeds. If you don't mind the smaller sensor, it's an excellent alternative for photographers on a budget.

    See our review

  5. Best Compact Camera For Photography

    If you thought high-quality photography was reserved only for large interchangeable-lens cameras, think again. The Fujifilm X100V proves that point-and-shoots still have something to offer in the age of smartphone photography. This premium compact camera has the same 26-megapixel APS-C sensor found on flagship models like the Fujifilm X-T4. Its design also hearkens back to vintage rangefinder cameras, with a hybrid EVF/OVF offset from the center of the body. As if the sensor and viewfinder weren't enough, the package is tied together by an excellent 35mm-equivalent prime lens, which is versatile enough for wider-angle shots or close-ups and portraits.

    It isn't the smallest point-and-shoot, but it's compact enough for traveling or street photography. That said, if you do need something even smaller, the Sony RX100 VII is a great alternative. It even has a zoom lens if you prefer to have a bit more flexibility with framing. However, it uses a smaller one-inch sensor, so image quality isn't as good as the Fuji. If you're after both portability and image quality, the RICOH GR III is a street photographer's dream and another worthy alternative—so long as you don't mind giving up a viewfinder, tilting screen, and 4k video capability.

    See our review

Notable Mentions

  • Canon EOS 5D Mark IV: The Canon EOS 5D Mark IV is a high-end full-frame DSLR popular among professionals and hobbyists thanks to its impressive image quality and robust weather-sealed construction. However, it's an older model now and more expensive than mirrorless alternatives like the Sony α7 III or the Canon EOS R6. See our review
  • Canon EOS 90D: The Canon EOS 90D is a DSLR camera with an APS-C sensor. Its crop sensor also has a fantastic 32.5 MP resolution, which is great for landscape photography. However, its autofocus and noise handling capability aren't as good as full-frame alternatives like the Sony α7 III. See our review
  • Canon EOS RP: The Canon EOS RP is a great entry-level full-frame option if you'd like a larger sensor than the Nikon Z 50. However, it has a worse dynamic range and a slower max burst rate. See our review
  • Fujifilm X-S10: The Fujifilm X-S10 is a great mid-range option that rivals the Nikon Z 50 in terms of build quality and ergonomics. However, it has a smaller viewfinder and a less reliable autofocus system for photography. See our review
  • Nikon D780: The Nikon D780 is one of the best all-around DSLR cameras we've tested, suitable for a range of different photography styles. Some people may prefer its optical viewfinder to the electronic viewfinders on the Canon EOS R6 and Sony α7 III. However, it isn't the most portable camera and has a slower shooting speed than many mirrorless alternatives. See our review
  • Panasonic Lumix DC-S5: The Panasonic Lumix DC-S5 is an excellent full-frame mirrorless camera with versatile performance for photography and video. However, the Sony α7 III has a slight edge in image quality and portability. See our review

Recent Updates

  1. Aug 25, 2022: Overhauled article to better reflect user needs and market trends. Also removed irrelevant Notable Mentions and touched up intro for clarity.

  2. Feb 21, 2022: Replaced the Sony a6400 with the Sony a7C as 'Best Camera For Travel Photography'.

  3. Jan 20, 2022: Moved the Nikon D780 to notable mentions, removed the Sony a6100 as 'Best Budget Camera For Photography', and added the Canon EOS R6 as the 'Best Camera For Low-Light Photography'.

  4. Dec 23, 2021: Added the Fujifilm X100V as the 'Best Camera For Street Photography'.

  5. Nov 23, 2021: Moved the Canon EOS RP to Notable Mentions and renamed the Sony RX100 VII from 'Compact Alternative' to 'Point-And-Shoot Alternative'.

All Reviews

Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best digital cameras for photography for most people to buy, according to their needs. We factor in the price, feedback from our visitors, and availability (no cameras that are difficult to find or almost out of stock in the U.S.).

If you would like to choose for yourself, here's the list of all our camera reviews. Be careful not to get caught up in the details. There is no single perfect camera. Personal taste, preference, and shooting habits will matter more in your selection.