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The 8 Best Cameras - Spring 2022 Reviews

Updated
Best Cameras

Narrowing down the best cameras in the world is no easy task when there are so many different cameras to choose from. The important thing to remember is that there is no single best camera—only the best camera to suit your particular needs, which depends on your budget, ergonomic preference, shooting habits, and experience level. 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 model, there's most certainly a camera out there for you.

It's worth noting that a camera's overall performance can vary drastically depending on what kind of lens you use. Your lens influences the amount of light entering the camera, an image's depth of field, autofocus behavior, and stabilization performance. That's without mentioning the physical aspects of your lens: a larger lens with a longer zoom length and a wider maximum aperture might make it easier to take the kind of photos you want, but it could make your camera more of a hassle to carry around. For consistency and user-friendliness, we currently test cameras with their standard kit lenses.

We've tested over 70 cameras, and below you'll find our recommendations for the best cameras to buy for most people. These picks were selected not only based on their overall performance but also their feature set and price. For more options, look at our recommendations for the best digital cameras, the best mirrorless cameras, and the best DSLR cameras.


  1. Best Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera

    The Canon EOS R6 is a premium full-frame camera that offers a well-rounded performance for both photography and videography. That makes it one of the best cameras to buy if you're looking for a mirrorless all-arounder. Its weather-sealed magnesium alloy body feels well-constructed and incredibly comfortable to shoot with, and it has a highly intuitive menu system and control layout.

    This camera comes with in-body image stabilization, a fully articulated touchscreen, and a high-resolution electronic viewfinder (EVF). It has a top-of-its-class autofocus system that can track subjects to the edges of the frame. It does a good job keeping moving subjects in focus, even when they're moving more quickly around the frame, and the camera can also shoot at a respectable 11 fps for burst photos of sports or wildlife. Image quality is incredible, with minimal noise at high ISO settings for low-light photography.

    It's also a very capable video camera, with frame rates up to 60 fps in both 1080p and 4k, though the latter introduces a very slight 1.07x crop. It also has remarkable internal recording capability for more advanced video work, including Log profiles and 10-bit internal recording to give you more latitude when color-grading your videos. However, it tends to overheat when shooting in 4k for longer periods, so it's best suited to short-form content that doesn't require long takes.

    See our review

  2. Best Crop Sensor Mirrorless Camera

    If you'd prefer to get a crop sensor camera, it's hard to go wrong with the Fujifilm X-T4, the flagship APS-C model from Fujifilm. They mainly produce APS-C cameras and are known for their top-notch in-camera processing, making Fujifilm cameras a viable and somewhat more affordable alternative to shooting full-frame. The X-T4 is an excellent hybrid camera with retro flair and a relatively portable weather-sealed body, along with a fully-articulated screen and excellent internal recording specs for video work.

    Its dedicated exposure dials will feel familiar to film shooters and, once you get the hang of using them, make it easy to adjust settings on the fly. The camera uses a 26-megapixel sensor and delivers very good image quality straight out of the camera. If you want to adjust the look of your JPEGs, you can also play around with the camera's various 'Film Simulation' profiles. RAW shooters need not worry, though; the camera also has amazing RAW noise handling, and it performs well even at higher ISO settings for more dimly-lit settings.

    Unfortunately, its autofocus system can be a bit unreliable. It'll sometimes lose track of moving subjects or detect a face where there is none. That said, it's still a good overall autofocus system that can handle most shooting situations. The camera can also shoot at an incredible 15 fps with its mechanical shutter to capture bursts of fast movement. On top of that, it has in-body image stabilization, which does a fantastic job reducing camera shake when shooting handheld, making this an incredibly well-rounded crop sensor camera.

    See our review

  3. Best Full-Frame DSLR Camera

    The Nikon D780 is the best full-frame DSLR camera that we've tested. This enthusiast-grade DSLR is weather-sealed and feels very well-built. It's comfortable to shoot with thanks to its large textured handgrip, extensive physical controls, and intuitive menu system, which includes a ton of customization options, so you can set the camera's controls to suit your own shooting preferences. Going with a DSLR also gives you a huge range of native lenses to choose from and better overall battery life.

    Performance-wise, this camera is well-suited to a wide range of photography styles. It delivers excellent image quality straight out of the camera with colors that look true to life and sharp, detailed images even at high ISOs. It also performs well when shooting in RAW, with fantastic noise handling, so you can shoot in low light without sacrificing too much quality. It also has a robust hybrid autofocus system, with accurate focusing through the viewfinder and a phase-detect AF system through Live View that gives you wider coverage and quicker focusing.

    That said, the camera doesn't have in-body image stabilization, which means you'll need to use optically stabilized lenses if you want more stability when shooting handheld. There's also an electronic stabilization feature, but enabling it incurs a small crop. Despite lacking IBIS, however, the camera does a fantastic job smoothing out camera shake with its optically stabilized kit lens. All in all, if you don't mind a bit more bulk and weight, this is an excellent all-around camera.

    See our review

  4. Best Crop Sensor DSLR Camera

    The best crop-sensor DSLR that we've tested is the Canon EOS 90D. This mid-range enthusiast model features a 32.5-megapixel crop sensor, a weather-sealed body, and a fully articulated screen. It feels very comfortable to shoot with and has a highly intuitive menu system, along with a large optical viewfinder that gives you a lag-free view through the lens.

    This camera delivers good image quality with an impressive level of dynamic range to give you more latitude when editing your photos. It also has adequate RAW noise handling at higher ISO settings. Also, while it has fewer detection points than mirrorless alternatives, it still has a very good autofocus system that can track moving subjects fairly consistently. The camera can shoot at a quick 11 fps in its high-speed continuous shooting mode, although it has a fairly small photo buffer.

    Unfortunately, it's on the heavier and bulkier side, so it's not the most convenient to take traveling. It also lacks in-body image stabilization, although its kit lens is optically stabilized and does an excellent job of reducing camera shake. All in all, if you're looking for a standout DSLR with an APS-C sensor to take advantage of a wider array of affordable lenses, this is an excellent choice.

    See our review

  5. Best Bridge Camera

    If you're looking for a bridge camera that combines the convenience of a built-in lens with the comfort and feel of a DSLR, then the best camera to buy is the Panasonic LUMIX FZ1000 II. While higher-end bridge cameras like the Sony RX10 IV have it beat on autofocus and continuous shooting speed, the FZ1000 II has a great battery life, a fully articulated screen, and offers a ton of value for its price.

    The camera's built-in lens has a 25-400mm full-frame equivalent focal length, meaning you can take everything from wide-angle landscape shots to close-ups of far-away subjects. It delivers great overall image quality, with a ton of dynamic range to bring out more details in high-contrast scenes. It also has decent noise handling capability at higher ISO settings, though images look softer due to the camera's smaller sensor. It can also shoot photos in 11 fps bursts in its high-speed continuous shooting mode, meaning you can capture bursts of fast movement.

    That said, while it has a decent overall autofocus system, it's not the most reliable. It tracks moving objects well for photography, but it can struggle with tracking and keeping moving faces in focus. Its 4k video features are also somewhat limited, as it can only record 4k video at up to 30 fps with a severe crop, and its autofocus performs poorly in 4k. Despite its flaws, though, this is one of the best bridge cameras that we've tested, and it should suit most people's needs.

    See our review

  6. Best Compact Camera

    If you're interested in a more compact option for something like street photography, the Fujifilm X100V checks almost every box for a premium compact point-and-shoot camera. It's fairly lightweight and portable, it uses an APS-C sensor for higher-than-typical image quality for a compact camera, and it has a hybrid viewfinder that can toggle between a rangefinder-style optical viewfinder and an electronic viewfinder to get a better view of your subject's surroundings or preview exposure settings at a glance.

    Its built-in lens has a 35mm full-frame equivalent focal length, which is wide enough to capture busier scenes or for more isolated subjects. It also has a digital crop function if you need to zoom in a bit. It delivers excellent overall image quality with impressive noise handling capability at higher ISO levels, performing well even in low light. Its autofocus system also does a good job of tracking and keeping moving subjects in focus, and it can also shoot at a quick 10 fps burst rate, though its image buffer is small and may fill up quickly.

    Unfortunately, it isn't the most comfortable to shoot with since its handgrip is very small. Its dedicated exposure dials can also take some getting used to if you're a beginner. Also, it has a decent advertised battery life for photos. However, it's disappointingly short for video, and the camera tends to overheat and shut down when recording in 4k for longer periods. Still, if you're looking for a compact camera for photography, it's tough to beat the X100V for its image quality and unique features like its hybrid viewfinder.

    See our review

  7. Alternative With Optical Zoom

    If you'd prefer a compact camera with an optical zoom lens instead of the Fujifilm X100V, check out the Sony RX100 VII. It doesn't perform as well in low light due to its smaller sensor, but its built-in lens has a 24–200mm equivalent focal length that gives you a bit more flexibility to compose shots without moving and zoom in on further-away subjects. Like most Sony cameras, it has a fantastic autofocus system that smoothly and reliably tracks moving subjects. The camera can also shoot at a remarkable 20 fps in its high-speed continuous shooting mode. Overall image quality is excellent, but visual noise and loss of sharpness increase at higher ISO levels. The camera also lacks an optical viewfinder, though it does have a pop-up EVF, and it's incredibly compact.

    Get the Fujifilm if you prioritize image quality and prefer to shoot through a viewfinder, but if you want more zoom range in a compact camera, go with the Sony.

    See our review

  8. Best Action Camera

    The best action camera that we've tested is the GoPro HERO10 Black. Like its predecessor, this premium action camera is remarkably portable and well-built. It comes with a second front-facing screen that lets you monitor yourself through Live View for vlogging or taking selfies. You can easily mount it on any number of compatible action cam rigs and mounts, and it's waterproof to an advertised depth of 33 ft, so it's fit for watersports or underwater shooting.

    It does an exceptional job smoothing out camera shake, thanks to its 'HyperSmooth' digital stabilization feature, though enabling it does incur a noticeable crop. It delivers okay video quality overall, relative to other cameras, but its upgraded processor gives it better low-light performance than previous iterations of the GoPro. It also offers a wide selection of frame rate and resolution options, including 1080p and 2.7k video at up to 240 fps, 4k video at up to 120 fps, and 5.3k video at up to 60 fps.

    That said, it doesn't have any inputs or outputs aside from its USB-C port, which you can use to charge it or connect it to a PC. If you want to connect it to an external display over HDMI or attach an external microphone for better audio, you have to buy a GoPro Media Mod at an additional cost. Still, this camera's relatively impressive video quality, fantastic stabilization, and extensive frame rate options make it one of the best cameras for sports video that we've tested.

    See our review

Notable Mentions

  • Canon EOS R: The Canon EOS R is similar to the Canon EOS R6, though it's an older model. It has a better battery life, but its shooting speed is slower, and its image quality is worse overall. It also lacks in-body image stabilization. See our review
  • Nikon Z 6II: The Nikon Z 6II is a great full-frame mirrorless camera. It has a faster continuous shooting speed than the Canon EOS R6, but it doesn't have a fully-articulated screen, and its autofocus system is less reliable. See our review
  • Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III: The Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III is a great Micro Four Thirds camera that's more affordable and portable than the Fujifilm X-T4, although its smaller sensor results in inferior low-light performance overall. See our review
  • Panasonic Lumix DC-S5: The Panasonic Lumix DC-S5 is an excellent mirrorless camera for videography. It delivers excellent video quality and does a slightly better job smoothing out camera shake than the Canon EOS R6. Its image quality isn't as good, and it has a slow continuous shooting speed. See our review
  • Sony α7 III: The Sony α7 III is an excellent full-frame mirrorless camera with incredible image quality and excellent autofocus performance. It lacks a fully-articulated screen, has a disappointing continuous shooting speed, and its menu system isn't as intuitive as the Canon EOS R6. See our review
  • Sony α7C: The Sony α7C is a full-frame interchangeable lens camera with a relatively compact body that makes it significantly more portable than the Canon EOS R6. However, it's not as comfortable to use, and its stabilization performance is worse. See our review
  • Sony α6400: The Sony α6400 is a great crop-sensor mirrorless camera. It's more portable than the Fujifilm X-T4, but it doesn't feel as well-built and lacks in-body image stabilization. See our review
  • Sony ZV-1: The Sony ZV-1 is a great compact camera aimed at vloggers. It has a fully-articulated screen and comes with a windscreen for its microphone to reduce wind noise. However, it isn't as well-rounded as the Sony RX100 VII. See our review

Recent Updates

  1. Feb 15, 2022: Reviewed picks for accuracy and availability; no change to recommendations.

  2. Jan 12, 2022: Renamed the Fujifilm X-T4 the 'Best Crop Sensor Mirrorless Camera' and renamed the Canon EOS 90D the 'Best Crop Sensor DSLR Camera'. Added the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III to Notable Mentions.

  3. Dec 15, 2021: Reviewed picks for accuracy; no change to recommendations.

  4. Nov 19, 2021: Replaced the GoPro HERO9 Black with the GoPro HERO10 Black as 'Best Action Camera'.

  5. Oct 29, 2021: Verified accuracy and availability of picks; no change to recommendations.

All Reviews

Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best cameras 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.

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