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The 6 Best Cameras For Photography - Spring 2023 Reviews

Updated
Best Cameras For Photography

While advanced video features are all the rage on cameras, photography is still the bread and butter of most consumer cameras. 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. Generally, it's better to invest in a less expensive camera body and higher-quality lenses than in an expensive camera body and cheap lenses.

We've bought and tested over 80 cameras in our lab, and below you'll find our recommendations for the best digital cameras for photography. If you're looking for something more specific, you can also check out our recommendations for 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 Mark II is the best enthusiast camera we've tested for photography. This well-rounded full-frame camera excels at all kinds of photography and even offers improvements over its predecessor, the Canon EOS R6, our previous favorite. Its new higher-resolution sensor gives you a little more leeway to crop your photos. The camera now has a faster readout speed and a whopping 40 fps burst rate when using the electronic shutter. Throw in a remarkable autofocus system with reliable tracking, and you've got a fantastic camera for sports and action photography.

    Beyond that, it's well-built, weather-sealed, and feels good in the hand. Plus, it has in-body image stabilization (IBIS) to help you shoot at slower shutter speeds in low light. That said, lens selection for the RF-mount still falls short of competitors like Sony. If you do want more native and third-party lenses to choose from, the Sony α7 IV is another fantastic hybrid camera aimed at enthusiasts. It has a more clinical design with worse ergonomics than the Canon, but the two cameras are very evenly matched performance-wise. Of course, the original R6 is still an amazing camera for photography that'll save you a bit of money if you don't mind a lower-resolution sensor.

    See our review

  2. Best Upper Mid-Range Camera For Photography

    While the Sony α7 III is an older model, it's still well worth considering today, especially if you want to save some money. Though it's been replaced by the more video-capable Sony α7 IV, the a7 III is a mainstay for a reason and remains one of the best cameras for photographers for its price. It has plenty to offer, including a still-competitive autofocus system, 10 fps burst shooting, and fantastic battery life for a mirrorless camera.

    You do lose out on weather sealing, touch navigation, and Sony's new-and-improved menu system. However, these are small sacrifices for a camera that still holds up remarkably well to newer competition regarding image quality. Its full-frame sensor handles noise well in low light and has plenty of dynamic range for high-contrast scenes like landscapes. Plus, you get extensive native and third-party lens options with Sony's E-mount. That said, 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 alternative if you can live with the shorter battery life and fewer lens options.

    See our review

  3. Best Mid-Range Camera For Photography

    While a full-frame camera like the ones above will get you the best image quality, going with an APS-C model can be a good way to save some money. The Canon EOS R7 is one of the best APS-C cameras we've tested, offering well-rounded performance for hybrid shooters. It's an especially great choice for wildlife photography, with quick burst shooting and an incredibly reliable autofocus system. However, its high-resolution sensor and IBIS make it well-suited to a wide range of photography styles.

    The Fujifilm X-T4 is another fantastic all-arounder in this price range. Thanks to its compact design, it's a great alternative if you want something more portable than the R7. However, its autofocus system isn't as reliable as the Canon's when tracking moving subjects. Overall, the R7 is the best mid-range camera for photography.

    See our review

  4. Best Lower Mid-Range Camera For Photography

    If the Canon EOS R7 is out of your price range, consider an entry-level model like the Nikon Z 50. Like the Canon, it uses an APS-C sensor, so it's less suited to low-light photography than our full-frame picks above. However, it performs admirably in low light for a crop sensor camera and offers plenty for both beginners and more advanced users.

    For one thing, it's one of the most well-built and comfortable entry-level cameras we've tested, with a weather-sealed body and generous handgrip. Its large viewfinder gives you a clear view of your subject, and the camera has a highly intuitive user interface that's accessible to newcomers. Battery life isn't amazing, however, so if you'd prefer a longer-lasting battery, the Sony α6400 is better. The Sony also has slightly better autofocus, but the ergonomics and user interface leave much to be desired.

    See our review

  5. Best Budget Camera For Photography

    The Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV is the best budget model we've tested for photography. It's the only option on this list with a smaller Micro Four Thirds sensor, and while that does mean a bit of a trade-off in low-light capability, it's still an excellent little camera that offers a ton of value for its price. There's also a wide selection of lenses available for the Micro Four Thirds system, making it a versatile option to grow your skills if you're just starting in photography.

    The camera is also super portable, with a compact design making it easy to take on the go. Plus, it's one of the few budget cameras to feature in-body image stabilization, which can help you shoot at slower shutter speeds handheld. Though it doesn't have the most reliable autofocus, it has a quick burst rate for action photos and solid overall image quality. The Canon EOS M50 Mark II is a good alternative if you want a larger sensor and better autofocus, but lens options are much more limited.

    See our review

  6. Best Point-And-Shoot 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 as flagship models like the Fujifilm X-T4. Its design also hearkens back to vintage rangefinder cameras, with a hybrid electronic/optical viewfinder offset from the center of the body. As if that wasn't enough, the package is tied together by an excellent 35mm full-frame equivalent prime lens, which is versatile enough for different photography styles.

    It isn't the smallest point-and-shoot but compact enough for travel or street photography. The Sony RX100 VII is a great, more portable alternative if you need something smaller. It even has a zoom lens if you prefer to have 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 portability and image quality, the RICOH GR III is a street photographer's dream and another worthy alternative—as long as you don't mind giving up a viewfinder and tilting screen.

    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 lacks features like IBIS and the more reliable AF tracking you get with newer mirrorless cameras like the Canon EOS R6 Mark II. See our review
  • Fujifilm X-H2: The Fujifilm X-H2 is a high-end APS-C camera with a high-resolution sensor and 8k video capability. However, it's more expensive than the Canon EOS R7 and has a slower sensor readout speed. See our review
  • Fujifilm X-S10: The Fujifilm X-S10 is a great lower mid-range option that rivals the Nikon Z 50 in terms of build quality and ergonomics but also includes in-body image stabilization. However, it's a bit more expensive and has a smaller viewfinder and a less reliable autofocus system. See our review
  • Nikon D780: The Nikon D780 is one of the best all-around DSLR cameras we've tested, suitable for various photography styles. Some may prefer its optical viewfinder to the electronic viewfinders on the Canon EOS R6 Mark II and Sony α7 III. However, it isn't the most portable camera and has a slower burst rate than many mirrorless alternatives. See our review

Recent Updates

  1. May 25, 2023: Added the Fujifilm X-H2 to Notable Mentions.

  2. Apr 27, 2023: Added the Canon EOS R7 as the 'Best Mid-Range Camera For Photography' and moved the Nikon Z 50 down to 'Best Lower Mid-Range Camera For Photography'.

  3. Mar 27, 2023: Replaced the Canon EOS R6 with the Canon EOS R6 Mark II as the 'Best Camera For Photography'.

  4. Feb 15, 2023: Replaced the Canon EOS M50 Mark II with the Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV as the 'Best Budget Camera For Photography'; removed the Panasonic LUMIX DC-S5 from Notable Mentions.

  5. Jan 18, 2023: Reviewed accuracy of article, with small adjustments to text for readability.

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.