Best cameras in 2024
Professional photography, vlogging, or simply trying to capture a memory while traveling or celebrating precious moments has never been easier with a camera. Even though our phones come with built-in cameras that offer excellent image quality and are beginner-friendly, nothing beats a digital camera specifically designed for the best photography experience.
There are so many camera options available for purchase that it can take time to pick the best one for your needs. The cameras differ in specifications, functionality, price points, ease of use, size, viewfinders, and purposes.
We will mainly focus on digital cameras, which use digital image sensors to capture images and videos instantly visible to you. The data is then stored on the digital camera on a fixed or removable memory device. So, in this review, we will overview what features we pay the most attention to when testing and selecting the best cameras for different needs.
Choosing the best camera: how to make your decision?
When selecting the best camera for your needs, consider more criteria than the price point. Depending on your needs, the camera specifications will also differ. So here are the main points to consider:
- Best for. Before selecting your camera, you must decide what you’ll use it – whether it’s vlogging, professional photography, videography, traveling, or even casual use. Cameras’ features differ based on their purposes.
- Experience level. Beginner-friendly and professional cameras are different. Therefore, you should evaluate your experience levels before purchasing a camera – make sure you know how to use it, the camera won’t have too many or too few settings needed, and it will meet your needs (instead of trying to make a camera for photography work with filming).
- Budget. Cameras don’t come for a cheap price. So, before committing to a purchase, evaluating your budget and how much you can allow yourself to spend is essential.
- Size and portability. Connected to the reason why you need a camera, the size of the device matters as well. You shouldn’t choose a massive professional camera for traveling since it will take up a lot of space and be uncomfortable to hold for long periods. You probably shouldn’t pick a tiny travel camera for professional videographing or photography.
- Image quality. When picking a camera, pay attention to the image quality. This means looking for a good sensor sizer and resolution. Higher resolution will help you take sharper images, while larger sensors will perform better in low-light surroundings. Also, check for interchangeable lenses so you can use the camera to take different photos or videos – from wide-angle shots to close-ups of distant objects.
- Battery life. A long-lasting battery is a sign of a quality camera. Pick one with good battery life if you intend to use your camera often or for long periods. Otherwise, you’ll be stuck with the issue of always having to charge it.
- Viewfinders. Different types of viewfinders are available depending on what camera you choose – electronic (EVF) ones are the most popular, while optical ones will be more battery-friendly. However, you must weigh which fits your needs better because optical viewfinders are not fit for time lapses or long exposures. On the other hand, EVFs are challenging to use in low lights, but they offer more information and help with focusing.
- Extra features. Some cameras also come with additional features that might be useful for you. That includes Wi-Fi or Bluetooth support, image stabilization, and more.
How we select and rank digital cameras
It’s rather challenging to rank digital cameras. There are so many manufacturers that offer several different types of cameras for their users – Sony, Canon, Nixon, Fujifilm, Olympus, GoPro, and many more.
Then there are different specifications based on what are your camera needs: whether you’re a professional photographer and need certain specific features, you’re a videographer who needs a camera for filming, a vlogger to have a quality camera to carry around, or just a beginner looking for the best tool for casual use. Different criteria are needed for testing the cameras for different purposes.
Here are the universal criteria we use to rate the camera quality no matter the specific needs:
- Image quality. One of the most essential features we test is what kind of images the camera can produce. This also includes the image resolution to note the maximum image size the camera can take.
- Versatility. While testing different cameras, we check if the same camera can be used for multiple purposes. Whether the camera that is good for filming is also good for photography or if the compact traveling camera can also be used for vlogging and provide quality video resolutions.
- Connectivity options. We evaluate the possible connections to evaluate the compatibility of the camera you’re picking with your workflow.
- Battery life. We test how long the camera’s battery lasts before you need to charge it again. So that, we can determine which cameras are better for long-term use and which will require often charging. In addition, better battery life means the camera is more reliable.
- Ease of use. Before adding a provider to our lists, we test how easy it is to use and manage the cameras. This way, we know which ones to recommend for beginner users and which options are better suited for experienced photographers or videographers to use.
- Price. We evaluate the different price points of specific cameras to offer various options. Therefore, we select cameras covering budget-friendly options and more premium providers.
With so many cameras available for purchasing and manufacturers making them, it can take a lot of work to pick the best camera for you. Therefore, the first step when buying a digital camera is to decide what you will use that camera for.
After that, it’s much easier to pick a camera that fits your needs – whether you’re looking for a camera for filming, professional photography, or a versatile camera that you could casually use for non-professional work. The final step is to decide your price point and then complete your purchase.