12 Best Cameras for Night Photography

Ultimate Buyer's Guide

This is a complete buyer’s guide covering the best cameras for night photography

In this all-new buyer’s guide, we will be covering:

  • Camera quality
  • Camera build
  • Important features
  • Price
  • Pros and cons
  • Lots more

 

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

So make sure to review all the options.

That way you can make the best decision for you!

Table of Contents

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

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

Best Overall CameraRating
Canon EOS 6D
Dollar Amount: $$
4.7 out of 5 stars

Best Cameras – Full ListRating
Canon EOS 5D Mark IV
Dollar Amount: $$$$
4.7 out of 5 stars
Canon PowerShot ELPH 190
Dollar Amount: $

★ Most Affordable ★

4.1 out of 5 stars
Nikon D7500 DX-format
Dollar Amount: $$$
4.7 out of 5 stars
Nikon D5600 DSLR
Dollar Amount: $$$
4.7 out of 5 stars
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III
Dollar Amount: $$$
4.5 out of 5 stars
Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II
Dollar Amount: $$
4.4 out of 5 stars
Pentax KP 24.32
Dollar Amount: $$$
4.7 out of 5 stars
PANASONIC Lumix G7
Dollar Amount: $$
4.6 out of 5 stars
Nikon D850 FX-format DSLR
Dollar Amount: $$$$

★ Highest Rated ★

4.8 out of 5 stars
Canon EOS 6D 20.2 MP DSLR
Dollar Amount: $$

★ Editor’s Top Choice ★

4.7 out of 5 stars
Canon EOS M50 Mirrorless
Dollar Amount: $$
4.7 out of 5 stars
Sony Alpha a6000
Dollar Amount: $$
4.5 out of 5 stars

What is the Overall Best Camera for Night Photography?

Canon EOS 6D

The Canon EOS 6D 20.2 MP DSLR Camera Body is our pick for the best camera for night photography. 

It’s a top choice given its robust body perfect for different applications. 

You can have it not only for shooting cityscapes but even for doing astrophotography when you go outdoors. 

Many also believe that it’s the best camera for night sky photography with its 20.2MP resolution, thanks to its CMOS sensor. 

This camera also has ISO sensitivity from ISO 100 to 25600.

 You even have the option to have it expanded to 102400. The only concern is that it tends to give you soft images on some lenses.

4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

night photography image in nanjing
Canon EOS 6D - Image by Dickson Phua

Pros

  • Robust built
  • High ISO
  • With built-in WIFI
  • Great image quality

Cons

  • Soft images on some lenses

12 Best Cameras for Night Photography

Full List

1. Canon EOS 5D Mark IV

The Canon EOS 5D Mark IV is one of the best cameras for night photography with its high ISO range from 100 to 32000 and even expandable up to 50 to 102400.

It also has a 30.4 MP full-frame CMS sensor allowing you to get highest quality shots whether you want to shoot portraits using available city lights or you want to shoot the city at night.

It has a superb AF capability that allows you to focus on the subject fast and a 7fps continuous shooting speed.

Though it could be the best camera for night sky photography, you have to anticipate some flaws such as its weight.

The body alone without the battery weighs around 800g.

4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV - Image by Alejandro Jimenez

Pros

  • Fast autofocus
  • 30.4 MP resolution
  • High ISO that is even expandable

Cons

  • Bit on the heavy side

2. Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 Digital Camera

A lighter option for shooting at night is the Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 Digital Camera.

It has the DIGIC 4 + Image Processor that is known to enhance image quality and process high ISO shots faster than other processors.

It also helps in reducing the noise maintaining beautiful details even in low light conditions.

You also have the Dynamic Image Stabilization feature that can compensate for the motion types that can prevent wasted shots.

And to top it off, you get to enjoy 20 megapixels on a point and shoot camera.

The downside is that the camera is hard to figure out for a point and shoot camera.

4.1 out of 5 stars (4.1 / 5)

Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 Digital Camera - Image by Shawn Latta

Pros

  • With noise reduction capability
  • Can process high ISO shots fast
  • With image stabilization that reduces chances of blurry images

Cons

  • Some have complained it takes a while to figure out how to use

3. Nikon D7500 DX-format

The Nikon D7500 is a top choice for many pros especially those who are into night photography.

It offers a 20.9MP DX-format image sensor along with the EXPEED 5 image processor that was used on the D500, it is known for its high ISO performance along with its accurate focus capability.

However, you have to watch out for its ISO upper limit where noise starts to come out. You can push it to ISO 1600 before it starts to degrade slowly.

And also, transferring the photos to your phone is quite problematic because the WiFi connectivity has a 2MB limit.

4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

night photography fireworks
Nikon D7500 - Image by Randy Ramos

Pros

  • High-quality photos even in high ISO
  • 20.9 MP
  • Accurate focus

Cons

  • Can’t transfer images via WiFi if it’s bigger than 2MB

4. Nikon D5600 DSLR

The Nikon D5600 is another good contender for the best camera for night photography.

It has 24.3MP resolution plus it’s one of the best cameras for night photography that offers a wide ISO range.

You can confidently push the ISO to 1600 or more without worrying so much about the noise.

It has an ISO range of 100 to 25600 allowing you to shoot at night with ease. You also get a 39-point autofocus that captures your subject both fast and efficiently.

Plus, you can transfer the photos instantaneously using WiFi connectivity. However, the Auto ISO tends to be a bit problematic.

This setting chooses the lowest applicable ISO when shooting. The choice for ISO is far too spaced in this setting making it frustrating for a lot of users.

For instance, one-shot you get ISO 1600 and the other is 3200.

4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Nikon D5600 - Image by Evan Lin

Pros

  • Wide ISO range
  • 24.2MP
  • With WiFi connectivity

Cons

  • Auto ISO is a bit frustrating to use due to the far spaced ISO per shot

5. Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III

The Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III is a lightweight option for those who plan on doing night photography.

Arguably the best camera for night sky photography because of its lightweight frame, but this mirrorless camera offers more than just a handy construction.

It makes use of a 20MP live MOS sensor and a weather-sealed body that is perfect for shooting at night especially outdoors.

It even has a 121-point all-cross-type on-chip phase-detection AF if you plan on shooting subjects at night.

And with its image stabilization system, you get to minimize blur even when you shoot at night.

The ISO sensitivity differs depending on the settings. It reaches up to ISO 25,600 and up to 6400 if you use the auto settings.

The only thing that you might have to anticipate is the fact that the battery issue remains in the OM-D E-M5 Mark III.

Might as well ensure that you have a spare battery or use it when it’s fully charged.

4.5 out of 5 stars (4.5 / 5)

night photography kiss
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III - Image by Alexandro Lacadena

Pros

  • High ISO sensitivity even on auto setting
  • Good autofocus
  • 20MP
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • The battery runs out a bit faster

6. Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II Mirrorless Camera

The Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II is another great alternative for those who are tired of using a bulky DSLR for their night photography sessions.

If you want to push the ISO of this camera, it looks generally good even up to ISO 800 and then starts to form some noise by ISO 1600.

Equipped with a 16MP CMOS sensor, it gets the job done for most situations.

4.4 out of 5 stars (4.4 / 5)

Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II Mirrorless - Image by Frank Fliw

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • High ISO sensitivity
  • 16MP resolution

Cons

  • Starts to show some noise after ISO 1600

7. Pentax KP 24.32 Ultra-Compact Weatherproof DSLR

One of the biggest problems that you have to anticipate when shooting at night especially outdoors is the fact that you are dealing with unpredictable weather.

And that’s when the Pentax KP DSLR comes in handy. This camera is a dustproof and weatherproof DSLR.

It has a 24.3MP APS C AA filter-less CMOS sensor that allows the camera to have a high ISO sensitivity of up to 819200.

It even has a shake reduction system that helps you minimize the blur in case you are shooting different subjects at night without a tripod.

The only issue is the WiFi connectivity feature that makes the user link via the Ricoh iOS app that is notorious for being hard to use.

4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Pentax KP 24.32 - Image by Sam Wilson

Pros

  • 24.2MP resolution
  • Can tolerate high ISO sensitivity
  • With shake reduction capability

Cons

  • WiFi connectivity can be tricky to use

8. PANASONIC Lumix G7

One of the best cameras for night photography among mirrorless cameras is the Panasonic Lumix G7.

This camera is best known for its intuitive controls that allow users to tweak the aperture, shutter speed, and the ISO settings fast.

On top of that, you also get to enjoy a lightweight construction that makes it a travel-friendly option.

It has a 16MP resolution that can provide great results with different lenses. And with an ISO sensitivity from 100 to 25600, it’s something that comes in handy in different low light scenarios.

The downside to this camera is that it is not weather-sealed.

4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)

PANASONIC Lumix G7 - Image by Paul Wilson

Pros

  • High ISO sensitivity
  • Intuitive control to change shutter speed, ISO, aperture, and other things
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Not weather-sealed

9. Nikon D850 FX-format DSLR

For those photographers who have a decent budget, the Nikon D850 FX-Format DSLR is a top choice in any best cameras for night photography list that you get to see online.

Just imagine having a 45.7MP resolution on your camera, a tilting touchscreen that allows you to shoot in weird angles, and an outstanding ISO range.

These are some of the things that you get to enjoy in this camera.

It has a low ISO baseline at ISO 64 and could even be expanded to ISO 32.

While the upper limit can reach 25,600 and even get expanded to 102,400.

4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)

night photography example
Nikon D850 - Image by "kanaristm" on Flickr

Pros

  • High ISO and expandable
  • Tilting touchscreen
  • 45.7MP resolution

Cons

  • On the pricier side

10. Canon EOS 6D 20.2 MP DSLR

The Canon EOS 6D is a 20.2MP full-frame CMOS sensor that has an ISO sensitivity of 100 to 25600.

At night, this camera performs well given the high resolution and high ISO sensitivity. However, using the camera is also something that needs to be discussed.

It has a 3-inch LCD that allows you to see your shots clearly plus navigate the system of the camera.

The camera is very easy to use though some of its features are not exactly needed by the average user.

4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Canon EOS 6D - Image by Bartek Rozanski

Pros

  • High ISO sensitivity
  • High resolution
  • Easy to use

Cons

  • Some features are unnecessary

11. Canon EOS M50 Mirrorless

24.1 megapixels plus it comes with fast and accurate autofocus, these are things that might interest an average photographer.

If you get to see its ISO range of 100 to 6400, it can deliver great images even in low light scenarios.

You also get around 235 shots per charge but can even be pushed to 370 images.

The only downside is that it pales in comparison to Canon DSLRs in terms of image quality.

4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Canon EOS M50 - Image by Pierre Tounis

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Easy to use
  • High resolution
  • Great autofocus

Cons

  • Lower image quality than Canon DSLRs

12. Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Digital

The Sony Alpha A6000 is considered by many as one of the best cameras for night photography with its powerful specs and compact design.

But what made it a tough contender among the best cameras for night photography online is the fact that it has an ISO sensitivity of 100 to 25600 that can be expandable to ISO 51200. 

It has a 24MP resolution not to mention fast autofocus to give users a superb experience whenever they are shooting subjects in low light conditions. 

And with a 3-inch tilting LCD, you even get the perspective that not a lot of cameras provide users. The only issue is that it tends to overheat.

4.5 out of 5 stars (4.5 / 5)

castle in night photography example
Sony Alpha a6000 - Image by Duane Moore

Pros

  • High ISO sensitivity and expandable
  • 24MP resolution
  • With a 3-inch tilting LCD

Cons

  • Can overheat at points

Concluding Remarks

Shooting photos without enough lighting can be tricky. 

But with powerful cameras in the market, the best cameras for night photography can vary from DSLRs to mirrorless versions. 

To get the best deal, be sure to check your budget and requirements before you decide to choose a camera for night photography.

 

 

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