12 Best Cameras for Beginners // 2020 Buyer’s Guide

In this post I’m going to personally review the 12 best cameras for beginners.

Believe me, I know how exciting, yet difficult it can be to find the perfect camera for your needs especially since it can be an investment.

Because of this, I dive into each camera to uncover the pros and cons in terms of quality, build, important features, etc.

So make sure to read the post until the end. That way you can make the best decision for you!

lifestyle portrait photography in los angeles neon lights

Photographed with Canon EOS Rebel T7

12 Best Cameras for Beginners

I’ve listed out each camera here so it is easy for you to see them from a high-level view.

Click/tap on each camera name to jump to that section. At the end of each  section, there is a link to jump back to this table to make it easy for you!

Starting a hobby or a career in photography can be problematic.

Choosing the right camera is often the number one concern among novice photographers.

Questions like what’s the best DSLR for beginners? Or what’s the number one mirrorless camera?

Given the number of cameras in the market, it’s hard to pick the best camera for beginners.

Instead, what we did is come up with 12 of the best contenders. Read until the end to find the best camera for you!

Let’s dive in:

#1 Pick - OverallRating
Nikon D5600 Digital SLR Camera
Dollar Amount: $$
4.2 out of 5 stars
Best Portrait Cameras for BeginnersRating
Canon EOS Rebel T7 DSLR
Dollar Amount: $

★ Editor's Top Choice ★

4.7 out of 5 stars
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1
Dollar Amount: $
4 out of 5 stars
PANASONIC Lumix G7 4K
Dollar Amount: $$
4.5 out of 5 stars
Best Travel Cameras for BeginnersRating
Canon EOS REBEL SL3 Digital SLR Camera
Dollar Amount: $$

★ Editor's Top Choice ★

4.7 out of 5 stars
Panasonic Lumix G9 Mirrorless Camera
Dollar Amount: $$$
4.5 out of 5 stars
Nikon D5600 Digital SLR Camera
Dollar Amount: $$
4.2 out of 5 stars
Best Street Photography Cameras for BeginnersRating
Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III
Dollar Amount: $
4.7 out of 5 stars
Fujifilm X-T30 4K Wi-Fi Mirrorless
Dollar Amount: $$

★ Editor's Top Choice ★

5 out of 5 stars
Panasonic LUMIX GX85 4K
Dollar Amount: $
4.6 out of 5 stars
Best Cameras for Landscape Photography for BeginnersRating
Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Digital Camera
Dollar Amount: $
4.4 out of 5 stars
Panasonic Lumix G85 4K Digital Camera
Dollar Amount: $$
4.4 out of 5 stars
Sony Alpha A7II A7M2
Dollar Amount: $$$

★ Editor's Top Choice ★

4.4 out of 5 stars

What is the Overall Best Camera for Beginners?

Nikon D5600 Digital SLR Camera

best camera for beginners
So what’s the best camera for beginners?

We’d recommend that you go full-frame with the Nikon D5600 Digital SLR Camera.

24MP resolution plus it comes with a 39-point AF system and touchscreen interface, these are things that can encourage beginners to enjoy shooting different subjects.

Shooting in low light isn’t also a concern because it has an ISO 100 to 25600 sensitivity.

The only thing that may stop you from getting this camera is that the users usually complained of the LCD malfunctioning.

 

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4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

Pros

  • Touchscreen
  • Good for low light
  • Fast AF
  • 24MP

Cons

  • LCD usually malfunctions

→ Jump Back to Overview Table

The Best Camera for Beginners Portrait Photography

Canon EOS Rebel T7 DSLR

best camera for beginners
The Canon EOS Rebel T7 DSLR is one of the best options for beginners who are looking to practice their portrait photography.

First, Canon lenses are among the best when it comes to portraiture. It offers sharp and detailed results on your subject’s face.

With the Canon EOS Rebel T7, you get 24 megapixels plus you can easily upload your photos via WiFi.

It also has a 9-point AF system that makes it easier to find the subject.

Getting used to all the settings might feel a bit intimidating at first, but you will be able to figure it out eventually.

 

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4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Pros

  • Robust construction
  • A good number of lens options
  • 24 megapixels
  • Fast autofocus

Cons

  • The setting is a bit complicated

→ Jump Back to Overview Table

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1 12.1MP Micro Four-Thirds

best camera for beginners
If you are not one of those novice photographers looking for the best DSLR camera for beginners.

The Panasonic Lumix DMC GF1 is a lightweight alternative to your bulky DSLR.

The Panasonic Lumix DMC GF1 brings a 12MP resolution plus a 3-inch LCD screen.

It doesn’t have a viewfinder but you use the screen to compose your shots. However, despite its perks, this is something that doesn’t do well in low light conditions.

 

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4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Pros

  • No need for a viewfinder to compose photos
  • With a 3-inch LCD
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Doesn’t do well in low light conditions

→ Jump Back to Overview Table

PANASONIC Lumix G7 4K Digital Mirrorless Camera

best camera for beginners
The Panasonic Lumix G7 is an improved version of the Panasonic Lumix G1.

If you find the G1’s 12MP resolution something that doesn’t meet your needs, the G7 offers 16MP plus 4K video capabilities.

Apart from being used by most vloggers, the G7 can also come in handy when taking portraits.

It has high speed and precise autofocus technology making it a good option even for sports photography.

Since it doesn’t have any shutter, you can also expect a quiet performance from this camera.

And once you are done, you can upload the photos via WiFi.

The only problem that you might encounter with this camera is the short battery life.

 

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4.5 out of 5 stars (4.5 / 5)

Pros

  • Quiet performance
  • With 4K video capability
  • Fast and accurate AF
  • WiFi connectivity

Cons

  • Short battery life

→ Jump Back to Overview Table

The Best Camera for Beginners Travel Photography

Canon EOS REBEL SL3 Digital SLR Camera

best camera for beginners
The Canon EOS Rebel SL3 is a lightweight and probably the smallest camera Digital SLR from EOS.

You get to enjoy a fast and accurate AF mode with eye detection capability on top of its 24.1 MP CMOS APS-C sensor.

You get to see rich colors when you take shots making it an ideal travel camera.

But what makes it one of the best cameras for beginners is the fact that is it features things that make beginners want to shoot photos.

You have the vari-angle touch screen allowing the user to tilt the screen to make it easier to compose shots.

It also has the ability of the camera to transfer via WiFi or Bluetooth. It still doesn’t compare to sophisticated models, but it fits the needs of most novice users.

But the worst is that you only have to use Canon flashes unless you update the firmware.

 

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4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Pros

  • Deep colors
  • Fast autofocus
  • WiFi connectivity
  • Small and lightweight

Cons

  • Can only be used on Canon flashes unless you update the firmware

→ Jump Back to Overview Table

Panasonic Lumix G9 Mirrorless Camera

best camera for beginners
The Panasonic Lumix G9 Mirrorless Camera is another great option for those novice photographers who love to travel.

One of the things that make this a good option is its weight and autofocus.

Since it is a mirrorless camera, expect the Panasonic Lumix G9 to be light and handy.

Also, focus takes 0.04 seconds and can even do high speed up to 60fps.

You can also get to enjoy 20.3 Megapixels which is not bad for a mirrorless camera.

However, if you are looking for a good number of lens options, DSLRs will still give you more options.

 

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4.5 out of 5 stars (4.5 / 5)

Pros

  • Fast autofocus
  • Lightweight
  • 20.3 Megapixels

Cons

  • Not a lot of lens options

→ Jump Back to Overview Table

Nikon D5600 Digital SLR Camera

best camera for beginners
Nikon D5600 DSLR has a 24.2 MP resolution coupled with a good autofocus feature.

It has 3 times more autofocus points than your D3400 making it an ideal option if you want accurate and fast AF especially when you are traveling.

It also has a decent speed at 5fps. And the battery can last approximately 970 shots before you have to charge it.

The only thing that users usually complain about is the LCD. Some users experienced LCD malfunctioning after a short time.

 

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4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

Pros

  • Takes 5fps
  • Accurate AF
  • Long battery life

Cons

  • LCD malfunctioning

→ Jump Back to Overview Table

The Best Camera for Beginners Street Photography

Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III

best camera for beginners
The Olympus OMD EM10 gives you the appearance of old Olympus film cameras but with modern digital technology.

The OMD EM10 has a 16MP Live MOS Sensor and TruePic VII Image Processor.

On top of that, you also get 4K videos in case you want to shoot videos instead of just photos.

But what makes it perfect for street photography is the fact that it has a 5 axis image stabilization feature that removes the blur on your shots.

It is also discreet when it shoots, allowing you to take photos of your subject during street photography without them knowing it.

This captures candid moments at its finest. You also get to tilt the 3-inch LCD allowing you to easily compose your images in weird angles.

For some users though, they find the skin tone to be a bit red.

 

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4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Pros

  • 16MP resolution
  • With great image stabilization
  • LCD can be tilted

Cons

  • Skin tone can be a bit too red

→ Jump Back to Overview Table

Fujifilm X-T30 4K Wi-Fi Mirrorless Digital Camera

best camera for beginners
The Fujifilm X-T30 is probably the best camera for beginners who are starting to learn street photography.

What makes it a good option? It’s light, easy to use, and can produce great quality images.

You get 26.1 MP with 425-point Phase-Detection AF. And also, you can transfer the photos via WiFi. The only downside is that Fuji has a different mount.

You can’t even enjoy micro four thirds lenses.

 

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5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

Pros

  • Good autofocus
  • Can be connected via WiFi
  • 26.1MP

Cons

  • Not a lot of lens choices

→ Jump Back to Overview Table

Panasonic LUMIX GX85 4K Digital Camera

best camera for beginners
The Panasonic Lumix GX85 is a tough contender for the best camera for beginners if you will look at some of its specs.

With an image stabilization feature and a 3-inch tilt touch LCD, you get to shoot with ease using this camera.

However, it only has a limited 16MP which pales in comparison against other cameras that we’ve featured.

But what makes it ideal for street photography is its weight.

The worst thing about this camera is the viewfinder which is the same thing that was used with the GX7.

 

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4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)

Pros

  • Tilt touch screen LCD
  • Image stabilization
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Viewfinder

→ Jump Back to Overview Table

The Best Camera for Beginners Landscape Photography

Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Digital Camera

best camera for beginners
The Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Digital Camera has been considered by some as the best camera for beginners who are trying to learn how to capture landscape photos.

It’s a lightweight option that you can bring with you in your bag. It has ISO 100 to 25600 and even expandable to 51200.

You also get fast and reliable hybrid AF along with its 179-point focal-plane phase-detection. And lastly, you get to enjoy a powerful 24MP APS C CMOS sensor.

The only thing that you might not like is the fact that it doesn’t allow bracket exposure and shutter delay being used at the same time.

For those who love to take landscape photos, this can be a deal-breaker.

 

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4.4 out of 5 stars (4.4 / 5)

Pros

  • ISO 100 to ISO 51200 for the expanded version
  • Fast autofocus
  • 24MP

Cons

  • Can’t use the bracket exposure and shutter delay at same time

→ Jump Back to Overview Table

Panasonic Lumix G85 4K Digital Camera

best camera for beginners
The Panasonic Lumix G85 is a good option for landscape photography because you get to shoot with a lighter gear that responds well even in low light conditions.

The Lumix G85 has a 16MP resolution and fast autofocus that allows you to get the photos you want in an instant.

And also, it even has dual image stabilization that ensures you can work even without a tripod.

However, the battery life is not something that you’d get excited about.

Despite this, a lot of photographers still think that it’s the best camera for beginners trying to shoot landscape photography.

 

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4.4 out of 5 stars (4.4 / 5)

Pros

  • 16MP resolution
  • Fast autofocus
  • Lightweight
  • Can be used even without a tripod

Cons

  • Battery life is short

→ Jump Back to Overview Table

Sony Alpha A7II A7M2 a7ii Mirrorless Digital Camera

best camera for beginners
The Sony Alpha A7II can be considered not only as the best camera for beginners but even for advanced users.

It is light and portable, things that make the A7II appealing for a lot of pros who are tired of carrying bulky DSLRs.

What makes it a good option for beginners is the fact that you get controls that are easy to understand.

You get stable shots, fast AF, and even 5 FPS. It even has a 24.3 MP full-frame Exmore CMOS sensor.

However, battery life has been the main issue with this camera.

 

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4.4 out of 5 stars (4.4 / 5)

Pros

  • Fast focus
  • Up to 5fps
  • Easy to understand controls

Cons

  • Battery life

→ Jump Back to Overview Table

Concluding Remarks

If you’ve considered getting the best camera for beginners, you have to check not only the specs but also the user-friendly features of the camera.

Is it easy to use? The simpler the setup for the camera, the better it is for beginners.

Whether it’s the best DSLR camera for beginners or a mirrorless option, be sure to compare your top choices first.

I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

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