While you can get great results using a crop sensor camera, a camera with a full-frame sensor will make it easier to work in low light, get more bokeh or background blur, and generally capture cleaner images with more dynamic range. Though most amateurs and hobbyists don't necessarily need a full-frame camera, the advantages of a full-frame sensor make them worth considering for those who are serious about photography. Remember that full-frame cameras generally aren't as portable as their crop-sensor counterparts and tend to come at a premium when it comes to price—lenses will be bigger and pricier, too. However, the barrier to entry is getting lower, with increasingly affordable models available for different budgets.
Thankfully, we've done some of the work in narrowing down your options. We've bought and tested over 90 cameras in our lab, and below, you'll find our top full-frame mirrorless camera recommendations. If you're looking for a camera specifically for low-light shooting, you can also look at our recommendations for the best cameras for low light. If you're interested primarily in photography, you can check out our list of the best cameras for photography or even more specific picks for landscape photography or wildlife photography, depending on your needs.
The Sony α7 IV is the best full-frame mirrorless camera we've tested. Following up on the highly popular Sony α7 III, the α7 IV has a new higher-resolution 33 MP sensor that captures plenty of detail and gives you more leeway to crop and edit your photos. It's a fantastic hybrid camera, too, with 4k video recording at up to 60 fps, albeit with an APS-C crop, along with internal 10-bit 4:2:2 recording and in-body image stabilization (IBIS) for steadier handheld shots—not to mention one of the most accurate autofocus systems on the market.
At this price point, the Canon EOS R6 Mark II is also worth considering, particularly if you prefer Canon's ergonomics. The R6 II also has the advantage of shooting 4k 60 fps video without a crop and has a quicker max burst rate. That said, the plethora of lens options available for Sony's E-mount, including more affordable third-party options, gives it a slight edge over the R6 II.
If cameras like the Sony α7 IV or the Canon EOS R6 Mark II are a little out of your price range, the Nikon Z 6II is a worthwhile option with a lower price point. While its autofocus system and AF tracking aren't quite as efficient as the autofocus on the Sony, it's still a very effective AF system that'll serve you well in most shooting situations. The camera is also right up there in build quality and image quality, with plenty of dynamic range and excellent noise handling in low light.
The biggest downside of the Z 6II compared to those pricier models is its video capabilities, as it's limited to 8-bit internal recording, with no Log recording option unless you use an external recorder, giving you less flexibility to edit and color grade your footage. Nikon's Z-mount lens options are also fairly limited, especially compared to Sony's E-mount, which boasts many third-party and native lens options. Still, it's an excellent photography camera that handles remarkably well, thanks to intuitive controls and ergonomics.
The entry-level Nikon Z 5 is a fantastic deal if you're on a tighter budget. It sits just below the Nikon Z 6II in Nikon's mirrorless lineup and shares many similarities. The cameras look and feel similar, with weather-sealed bodies, excellent ergonomics, high-res viewfinders, tilting screens, and in-body image stabilization. However, one of its few drawbacks is a much slower burst rate—a measly 5 fps vs. 14 fps on the Z 6II. Still, if you don't need very quick burst shooting, the Z 5 is an excellent photography camera for its price.
If you're a hybrid shooter or interested in video, be aware that the Z 5 can only shoot 4k footage with a severe crop and offers fewer frame rate options than the Z 6II. The Z 6II also has a slightly more capable autofocus system with more sophisticated tracking. But if you can live without adequate 4k recording, it performs on par for image quality and surpasses the more powerful Z 6II for battery life. While some of these things might be dealbreakers, this is still a relatively affordable full-frame camera with a lot to offer for photographers on a tighter budget.
"Cheap" is a relative term here, as the Canon EOS RP will still cost you a fair amount, but as far as full-frame cameras go, there isn't a more affordable option than this—that is, unless you buy a camera secondhand, which may be the best route if you're trying to save money. Still, with a decent full-frame sensor packed into a highly portable body, the RP has a lot to like, from its impressive autofocus system to its excellent ergonomics and intuitive controls. While it's clear Canon skimped on things like build quality and burst rate compared to pricier models, full-frame image quality has never been more accessible.
Like the Nikon Z 5, it isn't the best option for video shooters, with an even worse 1.74x crop and less impressive video quality, and it doesn't have IBIS to help reduce camera shake. If you like the portability of the RP but want better video capabilities, the newer Canon EOS R8 takes the portable body of the RP and marries it with the Canon EOS R6 Mark II's sensor—just know that it's notably pricier. If your main focus is photography, the RP offers lots of value, simplicity, and portability for those who want to upgrade from APS-C or jump straight into full-frame photography without breaking the bank.
While full-frame cameras aren't known for their portability, compact full-frame models like the Sony α7C prove that you don't need to give up portability to get full-frame image quality. With one of the most compact full-frame bodies on the market, the α7C is a great choice for high-quality travel photography and street photos. As far as performance goes, it sits somewhere in between the Sony α7 III and the Sony α7 IV, with a better AF system than the α7 III but worse internal video specs than the α7 IV. For image quality, it's right up there with both of them.
Of course, there are some trade-offs with a more portable camera, most notably its tiny viewfinder, which isn't especially comfortable to shoot with. It also has fewer buttons and control dials and just a single SD card slot. But if you're looking for full-frame image quality in a camera body that's super easy to take on the go, it doesn't get much better than the α7C.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best full-frame mirrorless cameras for most people to buy, according to their needs and budget. 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'd like to choose for yourself, here's the list of all our reviews for interchangeable-lens mirrorless cameras with full-frame sensors. Be careful not to get caught up in the details. There is no single perfect camera. Personal taste, ergonomic preferences, and shooting habits will matter more in your selection.