Narrowing down the best cameras in the world is no easy task when there are so many different options to choose from. There are interchangeable lens mirrorless cameras and DSLRs, used by pros and hobbyists alike, but you've also got your fixed-lens compacts and superzoom bridge cameras, not to mention tiny action cams to capture POV footage. The good news is that whether you're a beginner looking to buy your first mirrorless or DSLR camera, or a seasoned photographer looking to upgrade to a newer body, there's most certainly a camera out there for you.
Thankfully, we've done some of the work of narrowing those options down for you. We've bought and tested over 75 cameras, and below you'll find our top camera recommendations for most people. This list skews more towards photography, so if you're looking for a camera to shoot videos with, you can also try our recommendations for the best vlogging cameras or the best filmmaking cameras. If you want more affordable entry-level options, check out our picks for the best beginner cameras instead. If, on the other hand, you're looking to get into full-frame photography, try our list of the best full-frame mirrorless cameras.
It isn't cheap and is overkill for more casual photo and video shooters, but the Sony α7 IV is the best all-around camera we've tested. At this price point, you can expect top-notch build quality, weather-sealing, in-body image stabilization (IBIS), and dual memory card slots. On top of that, it's a video powerhouse with 4k 60 fps recording, excellent internal recording capability, and no recording time limit.
The Canon EOS R6 is an excellent alternative, especially if you're interested in sports and wildlife photography, thanks to faster burst shooting and a very reliable AF system, along with better ergonomics. That said, the Sony camera is more well-rounded for video, and it's hard to pass up on the many native and third-party lenses available for Sony's E-mount. Ultimately, you can't go wrong with either camera, so it comes down to personal preference and needs.
For a while, the Nikon Z 6 was one of the best cameras for the money, and while its lightly-upgraded successor, the Nikon Z 6II, doesn't quite reach the same heights as newer cameras like the Sony α7 IV, it's still a fantastic hybrid camera that most users will be happy with in this price range. Throw in some amazing, albeit expensive, lens options, and this makes for a very attractive mirrorless camera system.
Ergonomics are subjective, but Nikon cameras are known for their excellent handling and intuitive controls, and the Z 6II is no exception. Weather-sealing and a 14 fps max burst rate also make this a great option for sports or wildlife photography. That said, its autofocus trails a little behind the AF systems found on the Sony or the Canon EOS R6, and its internal video specs aren't quite as impressive as those higher-end cameras, but if you're looking for a well-rounded camera for different kinds of photography, this is one of the best you can get for the price.
For those who don't want to spend a fortune on a camera, stepping down to a crop-sensor model like the Nikon Z 50 is a great way to save money and space. APS-C cameras are generally cheaper and more portable than full-frame options like the ones mentioned above. The Z 50 offers a good mix of basic features and simple controls that are fairly accessible to newcomers, along with a sturdy, weather-sealed build that gives it a more premium feel than cheaper budget models.
Like its higher-end sibling above, the Z 50 has great ergonomics and an intuitive menu. It also uses the same lens mount, so you can easily pair it with more advanced lenses or upgrade to a full-frame Nikon body as your skills improve. Inside is an excellent sensor that performs well in low light, and it has a solid enough autofocus system for most uses, though it isn't as reliable as the Sony α6400. That's a great alternative if you prioritize autofocus for sports photography or faster subjects—just know that the ergonomics and user interface leave much to be desired compared to the Nikon.
If you're on a tighter budget, the ultra-portable Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV offers a ton of value for its price. It's a great option for vlogging or travel photography thanks to its small size and well-rounded features. While it uses a Micro Four Thirds sensor that's smaller than the other cameras listed here, you'll still get very solid image quality, plus smaller and generally cheaper lenses. It's also one of the few cameras at this price point to offer in-body image stabilization for smoother handheld shooting.
That said, autofocus performance can be inconsistent here, so if that's a priority, the popular and highly affordable Canon EOS M50 Mark II might serve you better. Just note that lens options for Canon's M-mount are limited, and the camera can only record 4k video with a severe crop.
While interchangeable-lens cameras are the most versatile, opting for a more compact point-and-shoot with a fixed lens doesn't necessarily mean sacrificing quality, thanks to cameras like the Fujifilm X100V. While it comes at a steep price, it checks almost every box for a premium point-and-shoot camera. It's also one of the most stylish cameras out there, taking inspiration from rangefinder SLRs of the past.
Dedicated exposure dials make it easy to adjust settings on the fly, and the camera's 35mm full-frame-equivalent lens is versatile enough to capture wider shots or more isolated subjects. It's built around an excellent APS-C sensor, which is larger than typical among compact cameras. The real standout feature is its unique hybrid viewfinder that lets you toggle between an OVF to get a better view of your subject's surroundings and an EVF to preview exposure settings at a glance. Add all that up, and you've got an ideal point-and-shoot for enthusiast photographers.
Jan 20, 2023: Moved the Fujifilm X-T4 to Notable Mentions and replaced it with the Nikon Z 6II as the 'Best Upper Mid-Range Camera'. Also replaced the Canon EOS M50 Mark II with the Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV as the 'Best Budget Camera' and added the Sony RX100 VII to Notable Mentions.
Dec 21, 2022: Removed the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III from Notable Mentions and added the Nikon D780.
Nov 21, 2022: Added mention of the Sony RX100 VII as an alternative to the Fujifilm X100V, and reviewed the article for accuracy.
Oct 28, 2022: Replaced the Canon EOS R6 with the Sony α7 IV and renamed the Fujifilm X100V from 'Best Fixed-Lens Camera' to 'Best Point-And-Shoot Camera'.
Sep 26, 2022: Restructured article for clarity and to better align with user needs.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best cameras to buy for most people, 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.