2021’s Top 25 Best Liked Beginner & Expert Photography Cameras

Photography July 6, 2021 9 min read

Choosing a camera for your photography work can be a challenging task if you’re making a significant investment, so it deserves serious consideration. One of the critical things to think about when comparing a camera is what you want to achieve and for what projects you will be using it the most. Considering a wide range of budgets, we’ve made a comprehensive list of the best photography cameras, along with some tips on how to choose the camera best suited to you.

Part 1: Top 12 Pro DSLR Photography Cameras for 2021

CameraPriceTypeResolutionMegapixelsMax Continuous Shooting RateUser Level
Sony A16,499.99Mirrorless8K20.8MP50.1fpsProfessional / Can shoot anything
Nikon D66,499.95DSLR4K28.8MP14fpsProfessional / Creators on the go
Sony A9 Mark II5,999.99Mirrorless4K24.2MP20fps Electronic, 10fps MechanicalExpert / Sports camera
Canon EOS R53,899.00Mirrorless8K45MP12fpsExpert / Professional photography & videos
Nikon D8502,999.95DSLR4K45.7MP7fpsProfessional / Professional photography & videos
Canon EOS R62,499.00Mirrorless4K UHD20.1MP12fps Mechanical Shutter, 20fps Electronic ShutterEnthusiast / Professional filming & photography
Olympus OM-D E-M1X1,799.99Mirrorless4K20.4MP15fpsEnthusiast / Professional / Creators on the go
Fujifilm X-T41,699.00Mirrorless4K26.1MP30/15fpsProfessional / Professional photography & videos
Fujifilm X-S10999.00Mirrorless4K26.1MP30/8fpsIntermediate / Enthusiast / Hobbyists looking to level up
Panasonic FZ1000 II899.99DSLR (Bridge Camera)4K20.1MP12fpsIntermediate / Enthusiast / Hobbyists looking to level up (no extra lenses)
Nikon P950799.95DSLR (Bridge Camera)4K20.1MP30fpsIntermediate / Enthusiast / Hobbyists looking to level up (no extra lenses)
Fujifilm X-T200799.99Mirrorless4K24.2MP8fpsEnthusiast / Professional / Vloggers

1. Sony A1

Price: $6499.99
Pros: One of the highest spec cameras on the market with 30fps burst shooting
Cons: Some stabilization issues + big price tag

The Sony A1 is an incredible device with an enormous resolution and super clear image quality. While the camera spec records 30fps Burst Shooting, users report this isn’t always achieved. Burst Shooting aside, the Sony A1 is a fantastic option for Sports content creators

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2. Nikon D6 

Price: $6499.95
Pros: Solid build, Easy upgrade from previous Nikon Models
Cons: One of the most expensive options.

The Nikon D6 is a professional camera with all the intuitive Nikon controls we’re used to. The Auto Focus system isn’t as impressive as similar Canon models, but Nikon has focused on a seamless workflow with a range of connectivity options.

Get Nikon D6 Now

3. Sony A9 Mark II 

Price: $5999.99
Pros: Super fast shooting ability
Cons: Confusing interface and menu options

The Sony A9 Mark II is one of the fastest cameras on the market, with impressive Auto Focus and connectivity. The Sports camera is sure to capture every frame of the action. if you can find your way around the menus to set the camera up.

Get Sony A9 Mark II Now

4. Canon EOS R5

Price: $3899.00
Pros: Stunning 8K shooting capabilities.
Cons: Some overheating when shooting in 8K for more extended periods

The Canon EOS R5 is an excellent camera for both photography and video work and makes switching between functions super easy. The resolution and image quality are outstanding and definitely one of Canon’s most robust cameras to date.

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5. Nikon D850 

Price: $2999.95
Pros: Huge, clear viewfinder, amazing resolution
Cons: Can be difficult to use if it’s your first Nikon Camera

The Nikon D850 is one of the highest spec DSLR cameras ever made, with an incredible resolution of 45.7 megapixels. The chunky body feels stable and sturdy, offering great balance with longer lenses. A solid camera for most projects.

Get Nikon D850 Now

6. Canon EOS R6 

Price: $2499.00
Pros: Low-Light filming capabilities + 5-axis in-body image stabilization system
Cons: Offers a much lower resolution than other cameras

The Canon EOS R6 is the camera for the enthusiast, with fantastic low-light capabilities making it an option for professionals. The lower megapixels might not be such a drawback for web creators, making it the perfect option for business owners that want to shoot professional content themselves.

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7. Olympus OM-D E-M1X 

Price: $1799.99
Pros: Huge battery capacity + AI Focus Tracking System
Cons: Not a significant advance to the EM-1

The Olympus OM-D E-M1X is a purpose-built sports camera with extreme speed and incredible autofocus. The body is sturdy and slightly bigger than other cameras, but the size allows for a larger battery and better stability when using large lenses.

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8. Fujifilm X-T4 

Price: $1699.00
Pros: Fantastic Stabilization
Cons: Relatively new camera – Unsure of lifespan

The Fujifilm X-T4 is a relatively new camera to the market and a fantastic upgrade to the X-T3. The camera boasts 6.5-stop in-body stabilization, making it ideal for events and sports videographers.

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9. Fujifilm X-S10 

Price: $999.00
Pros: A fantastic Intermediate Level camera
Cons: Lacks external Exposure Controls

The Fujifilm X-S10 is a firm favorite of vloggers and online content creators with a sturdy and compact body, it’s easy to grab and go. The in-body stabilization and multi-angled rear screen make the camera easy to use while producing professional-quality footage.

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10. Panasonic FZ1000 II 

Price: $899.99
Pros: 16x Optical Zoom + Reasonable Battery Life
Cons: Only Micro USB, no USB-C option

The Panasonic FZ1000 II is a fantastic option for anyone looking for a lot of flexibility in their shots, without the need for lots of lenses. The 16x Optical Zoom and 3cm Macro Focus make this an ideal camera for intermediate wildlife videographers or photographers.

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11. Nikon P950 

Price: $799.95
Pros: Huge 83x Optical Zoom 
Cons: No Touchscreen

The Nikon P950 is the perfect option for wildlife photographers and videographers, with a massive 83x optical zoom. The body is chunky, looking similar to a DSLR camera, but the size doesn’t do much to counteract the enormous zoom lens. Best to invest in a tripod for this camera.

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12. Fujifilm X-T200 

Price: $799.99
Pros: Compact and stylish with superb photo quality.
Cons: Disappointing Battery Life and Limited Video capabilities

The Fujifilm X-T200 is an incredible still camera with an attractive price point. The 4K video functions are great for controlled situations but missing some features for more professional videographers, ideal for vloggers that want a professional camera to meet their needs.

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Part 2: Top 13 Beginner Photography Cameras for 2021

CameraPriceTypeResolutionMegapixelsMaximum continuous shooting rateUser Level
Sony RX1001,299.994K4K20.1MP30fpsIntermediate / Expert / Traveling photographers
Panasonic Lumix G9999.99Mirrorless4K20.320fpsEnthusiast / Intermediate photographers
Sony a6400899.95Mirrorless4K24.2MP11fpsHobbyist / Intermediate / Vloggers & Marketers
Nikon Z50899.95Mirrorless4K20.9MP11fpsExpert / Intermediate photographers
Fujifilm X-T30899.00Mirrorless4K26MP30fpsIntermediate / Vloggers & marketers
Fujifilm X-E3849.00Mirrorless4K24.3MP14fpsIntermediate photographers
Canon G7 X699.99DSLR4K20.2MP6.5fpsHobbyist / Intermediate
Canon EOS Rebel SL3699.99DSLR4K24.1MP5fpsHobbyist / Intermediate
Sony ZV-1649.99DSLR4K16.1MP8.6fpsBeginner / Vloggers
Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV599.99Mirrorless4K20.3MP15fpsBeginner / Personal use
Canon PowerShot SX70 HS599.99DSLR (Bridge)4K20.3MP10fpsBeginner / Intermediate / Instagram influencers & marketers
Nikon D3500599.95DSLRHD24.224fpsBeginner
Olympus TG-6379.99Underwater Camera4K1220fpsIntermediate / Underwater photos & video

1. Sony RX100

Price: $1299.99
Pros: Fits in your pocket
Cons: Expensive

The Sony RX100 is a neat little camera that fits in your jacket pocket, making it ideal for vloggers and on-the-go content creators. The camera features many smart functions, including ultra-sharp 3 inch LCD and exposure preview. The size does cause one major issue, however, as the HDMI port is located on the bottom.

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2. Panasonic Lumix GX9 

Price: $999.00
Pros: 6.5-stop image stabilization
Cons: ISO range smaller than preferred

The Panasonic Lumix GX9 isn’t the greatest camera for video recording, but for photography, this camera is packed full of neat features. With amazing handling and fantastic stabilization, the camera offers both 4K and 6K photo modes.

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3. Sony a6400 

Price: $899.99
Pros: Compact, light with no limit 4K video shooting
Cons: No in-body stabilization 

The Sony a6400 is the ideal camera for businesses looking to produce their own photos and video content. Super easy to use, this camera features a built-in flash, 4K video recording without limit, and a 180º tiltable LCD screen. The lack of stabilization means you’ll probably need a tripod.

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4. Nikon Z50 

Price: $899.00
Pros: Impressive handling with a great viewfinder
Cons: Lacks native lens options

The Nikon Z50 is a compact and lightweight camera, ideal for photographers on the go. The native lens range is limited, but those that are available offer powerful performance. The camera also lacks a joystick for choosing autofocus point, which can be annoying if you are used to having one.

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5. Fujifilm X-T30 

Price: $899.00
Pros: Great autofocus and built-in flash
Cons: No in-body stabilization 

The Fujifilm X-T30 is a fun camera, ideal for intermediate photographers or beginners looking to level up. The body is designed for easy use, with a tilting LCD screen and tactile controls, but it isn’t weather-sealed, so not a great option for outdoor photographers.

Get Fujifilm X-T30 Now

6. Fujifilm X-E3 

Price: $849.00
Pros: Up to 325 autofocus points
Cons: Poor battery life

The Fujifilm X-E3 offers excellent quality images with a slim, attractive body design. The camera might be a little hard for beginners to pick up, and the limited touch screen controls can be frustrating. 

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7. Canon G7 X 

Price: $699.99
Pros: Large aperture and fast shutter speed
Cons: No viewfinder

The Canon G7 X is an intermediate to a professional camera, with one glaring issue – there is no viewfinder. Instead, users are limited to a tilting LCD screen, which, although bright, isn’t optimal. The body is sturdy and hardwearing, and the image quality is fantastic, even if previewing is challenging. 

Get Canon G7 X Now

8. Canon EOS Rebel SL3 

Price: $699.99
Pros: Intuitive controls + lightweight
Cons: Very few autofocus points

The Canon EOS Rebel SL3 might be more expensive than the Powershot, but it is packed with extra features that take this popular camera to another level. With a fantastic fully-articulating LCD and amazing resolution, this is the smallest and lightest Canon available.

Get Canon EOS Rebel SL3 Now

9. Sony ZV-1

Price: $649.99
Pros: Incredible autofocus + flip-out LCD screen
Cons: Poor stabilization + no headphone jack

The Sony ZV-1 camera is built with vloggers in mind – small and compact with power video and stills capabilities. The fixed lens offers 24-70mm zoom, but you’ll definitely need a tripod with this camera, as the stabilization is problematic. 

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10. Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV

Price: $599.99
Pros: Easy to use
Cons: No microphone input

The Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV is a pickup and shoot camera with an incredibly accessible interface. Some users have reported a slower than preferred autofocus function, but for beginners or those wanting to upgrade their family snaps, this is a great option.

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11. Canon PowerShot SX70 HS 

Price: $599.99
Pros: 65x Zoom Lens, Mic input for 4K video
Cons: Not great for fast action or low light shooting.

The Canon PowerShot SX70 HS is a tremendous all-around personal camera that can take a decent shot in most situations. The mic input and 4K video make this camera a favorite with vloggers and YouTubers who use a mix of media for their projects.

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12. Nikon D3500 

Price: $599.95
Pros: Compact and affordable 
Cons: Fixed LCD with no touch screen

The Nikon D3500 is an affordable and easy-to-use camera, ideal for those new to photography or looking to replace a personal digital camera. The shot quality is excellent with automatic BlueTooth image transfer, but this is not a camera for recording video. 

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Bonus: Olympus TG-6

Price: $379.99
Pros: Sturdy waterproof camera with anti-fog
Cons: No touch screen, lags in comparison to other sports cameras

The Olympus TG-6 offers amazing quality images and video underwater with its tough and waterproof build. The high-quality casing also makes it an ideal option for sports enthusiasts that want to capture their adventures.

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Part 3: Top Tips on How to Pick Your Camera

Mirrorless or DSLR: what’s the difference?

The most significant difference between a mirrorless camera and a DSLR is how the preview is processed. In a DSLR, a small mirror projects the image to the sensor, which means you see the image exactly as it goes through the lens.

With a mirrorless camera, the light enters the camera directly through the sensor, and the image shown in the viewfinder is a digital image, the same as you’d see on the screen.

Traditionally, DSLRs were the preferred choice of photographers because you could be assured that the image in the viewfinder has undergone no digital processing. However, as technology has improved, mirrorless cameras are becoming fierce competitors, as they are smaller, lighter, and offer a speedier performance.

Price

Price is important to everyone looking to invest in a camera, but what you need the camera to do is a far more important consideration. When working out the cost of your camera, it is essential to consider your additional kit, such as lenses, gimbal, and tripods. Considering your needs can also save you money from potentially investing in technology you don’t need.

Kit lenses

Lenses can be expensive, especially for higher-end cameras, so you should also consider the longevity of your camera. Many DSLR cameras will use the same lenses across multiple bodies, meaning if in the future you want to upgrade, you can still use the same lens set-up. 

Megapixels

The number of megapixels in your camera refers to how much information the camera can capture and how much detail your image will contain. While higher megapixels can result in a more detailed image and a lower count won’t prevent you from creating beautiful compositions. A good photographer will be able to take a stunning shot regardless of the megapixel count.

Stabilization

Stabilization is one of the main things would-be photographers forget to consider when purchasing a camera. Poor stabilization will result in out-of-focus and poorly frame shots, especially if you are shooting without the aid of a tripod or using a long zoom lens. Stabilization can add dramatically to the cost of a camera, so if you decide to go without, make sure you have a good tripod or a gimbal to hand.

Additional Kit

We’ve already mentioned your main kit, the body, and lenses, but there are many other things you might need to achieve your desired results. If you want to be taking photos in low-light situations, you may require a flash or ring light. For cameras with minimal or no in-body stabilization, you may need a tripod or gimbal. 

LCD Screen that Flips

The LCD screen on your camera can be a blessing and a curse, especially on a bright sunny day. Choosing a camera with an LCD screen that can flip out or change angle can be a huge benefit and prevent a lot of stress on your productions. 

4K Video

If you want to record video and take photos, choosing a camera with 4K video functions is a good choice. While you will be presented with plenty of technical challenges when filming,  ensuring your camera has the capabilities to do so is the first step.


Whether you’re just starting, a seasoned professional, or looking to level up your Photography work, choosing the right camera for you is essential. There is no shortage of cameras on the market, and many can claim to be the best photography camera in their specific niche. Only you know what you want to do with your camera, so think carefully and creatively before you make your choice.