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What are the best mirrorless cameras you can buy?

June 29, 2022

Are you looking for the best mirrorless camera you can buy? Then look no further than this comprehensive buyer’s guide to the best current mirrorless models.

Mirrorless cameras have come of age – they’re full of the latest technology and deliver images that are every bit as good as, if not often better than, a comparable DSLR camera…

In the early days (from early 2012 onwards) of modern mirrorless cameras, the main claim made for them was that they were smaller and lighter than DSLR cameras.

This is because they did away with the need for a the mirror and a pentaprism, thus saving lots of space in terms of camera design and size.

They also allowed the lens mount to be moved closer to the sensor, enabling both the cameras and lenses to be made smaller.

The benefits of mirrorless cameras

Since then the technology in mirrorless models has come on in leaps and bounds with electronic viewfinders (EVFs) that instantly show you the impact of the camera’s settings – thus helping with image composition.

They effectively work in a permanent ‘Live View’ mode, so you’re seeing exactly what the camera’s sensor is seeing and can adjust and compose shots accordingly.

Their autofocus systems are snappy and clever, sometimes combining the best of phase-detection and contrast-detection AF systems, which gives you more autofocusing options.

Indeed, many mirrorless cameras now deploy subject recognition systems, which can identify subjects – such as animals or trains – and make the appropriate focusing adjustments.

Add to that video shooting capabilities, fast shutter speeds and the fact that, unlike with a DSLR, shooting parameters such as exposure, colour settings and focusing remain the same when you’re shooting using the EVF or the rear LCD screen.

All things considered, it’s not surprising that many photographers are trading in their clacking-mirrored cameras and switching to the new breed of mirrorless cameras.

Major buyer’s guide

In this major buyer’s guide, we’ve rounded up the best mirrorless cameras on the market – from models for first-time camera buyers right up to cameras for seasoned professional photographers.

There’s everything from small ‘carry-everywhere’ cameras to a medium format camera that captures every scrap of detail.

Read on for our best buys, starting from the lowest price first and moving upwards (but don’t forget that prices can change on a regular basis).

In this essential buyer’s guide we take a closer look at some of the best mirrorless cameras that you can currently buy. We give our expert recommendations about what each one is best for to help you to make an informed buying decision that best suits your needs and budget…


Canon EOS M50 II

£679.99 with 15-45mm lens
store.canon.co.uk

Best Canon APS-C Mirrorless Camera

Canon EOS M50 II – at a glance

  • Sensor: 24.1MP APS-C sensor
  • Viewfinder: 2.36m-dot OLED viewfinder
  • Screen: 3-inch, fully-articulated touchscreen
  • ISO range: 100-25,600 (extendable to 51,200)
  • 10fps continuous shooting (single AF)
  • 4K video (with 1.5x crop)
  • Dimensions: 116.3×88.1×58.7mm
  • Weight: 387g (including battery and card)

This likeable little APS-C format camera is simple and approachable for novices, while offering plenty of manual control for enthusiasts. Its central electronic viewfinder is joined by a fully articulated touchscreen.

With Canon’s tried and tested Dual Pixel AF, autofocus is snappy and accurate. Dual Pixel AF means that there are phase detection pixels on the sensor, which are combined with regular contrast detection AF to bring the best of both worlds. It’s easy to set up and use, particularly when combined with Touch AF using the screen. This is available when using the EVF, as well as when shooting via the rear screen.

For those that are looking at the Canon EOS M50 Mark II as their first foray into a system camera, it is an excellent companion for photography, and may serve as a smaller option for those still using a DSLR or an R-series camera. It also has extensive and reliable features for the contemporary creator who may be streaming live on YouTube one day, then taking photos for Instagram the next, all whilst vlogging for YouTube.

It’s capable of producing consistently fine images, which are easy to share thanks to well-designed smartphone connectivity. The M50 Mark II adds in some additional features that will be useful for those who want to record vertical video, and eye-detection AF has been added to FullHD video recording.

Read our Canon EOS M50 Mark II Review


Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV

Around £699.99 with zoom lens
www.olympus.co.uk

Best Micro Four Thirds Mirrorless Entry Level

Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV – at a glance

  • Sensor: 20MP Four Thirds sensor
  • Viewfinder: 2.36m-dot, 0.62x magnification
  • Screen: 3-inch tilting touchscreen
  • ISO range: 200-6400, ISO 80-25,600 (extended)
  • Up to 15fps shooting
  • 121-point contrast-detect AF
  • 5-axis in-body stabilisation
  • Dimensions: 121.7×84.4x49mm
  • Weight: 383g

Based around a 20MP sensor, this attractive compact mirrorless model offers excellent JPEG image quality with extremely attractive colours. Paired with the TruePic VIII processor, it provides a sensitivity range of ISO 200-6400 as standard, with extended settings equivalent to ISO 80-25,600 available.

The design is stylish and the ergonomics are well laid-out, while extremely effective in-body stabilisation keeps pictures sharp. One of Olympus’s key technologies is its 5-axis in-body image stabilisation, which works with practically any lens you can fit onto the camera, aside perhaps from very long telephotos. The E-M10 IV promises 4.5 stops benefit when shooting hand-held. This allows you to keep your ISO setting down in low light, offsetting the noise disadvantage of the smaller sensor, or to use slow shutter speeds hand-held for creative motion-blur effects.

The camera’s automated systems work very well. Metering, auto white balance and colour rendition all come together here to give consistently attractive JPEG output. It’s also easy to judge in the viewfinder when you might want to lighten or darken an image for aesthetic effect, and apply the requisite level of exposure compensation.

You also get a good set of useful advanced features and the camera is supported by a fine set of small, affordable Micro Four Thirds lenses. You’ll also find the camera offers Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, as well as 4K video recording. With In-Body Image Stabilisation, it offers great value for money.

Read our Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV Review


Fujifilm X-T30 II

£769 body only, £849 with 15-45mm lens
www.fujifilm.eu/uk

Fujifilm X-T30 II

Fujifilm X-T30 II – at a glance

  • Sensor: 26.1MP X-Trans CMOS IV Sensor
  • Viewfinder: 2.36M-dot electronic viewfinder, 0.62x magnification
  • Screen: 3-inch, 1.62M-dot, tilting touchscreen
  • ISO range: 80-51,200 (extended)
  • Up to 30fps with electronic shutter (cropped), 20fps uncropped
  • Video 4K CINE/UHD 30, 25, 24fps video recording
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth built-in
  • Available in silver/black or all-black
  • Dimensions: 118.4×82.8×46.8mm
  • Weight: 378g (with battery and memory card)

The Fujifilm X-T30 II is an update to what was previously Fujifilm’s best selling and most popular camera in its X-series range, the X-T30 (and before that, the X-T20). The X-T30 came out in 2019, with an RRP of £849 body only. The X-T30 II was introduced in 2021 with an improved specification, but a reduced price of £769 body only. This makes it very competitively priced, considering what is on offer.

You get the same 26.1MP APS-C X-Trans 4 CMOS sensor, as used in the flagship X-T4, which is roughly twice the price, as well as the same image processor. The X-T30 II also features 4K CINE video recording, a 3-inch 1.62M dot screen, and an electronic viewfinder (EVF).

The improvements compared to the X-T30 are the X-T30 II’s 1.62M-dot 3-inch touchscreen, its Classic Neg and Eterna Bleach Bypass film simulation modes, an improved multi-exposure mode (up to 9 shots), High-speed video recording (FullHD, 240fps), an improved autofocus system inherited from the X-T4, an improved buffer memory and a refreshed menu system that splits stills/movie menus.

The Fujifilm X-T30 Mark II is an excellent camera. The X-T30 was (and still is) a great camera, and similarly, the X-T30 II is also a great camera. Improved over the original, but at a lower price point, the X-T30 II is a great mirrorless camera for those who are looking for excellent image quality, in a compact and portable camera.

Read our Fujifilm X-T30 II Review


Fujifilm X-S10

£949 body only
www.fujifilm.eu/uk

Fujifilm X-S10 – at a glance

  • Sensor: 26.1MP APS-C X-Trans CMOS 4 sensor
  • Viewfinder: 2.36m-dot, 0.62x magnification, 100fps
  • Screen: 3-inch, 1.4m-dot fully-articulated touchscreen
  • ISO range: 160-12,800; 80-51,200 (extended)
  • 5-axis in-body stabilisation
  • Dimensions: 126×85.1×65.4mm
  • Weight: 465g

The Fujifilm X-S10 is the Fuji APS-C format camera for photographers who don’t want traditional exposure controls. It has much of the same technology as the X-T30 (and X-T3 and X-T4) including the 26.1MP X-Trans CMOS 4 sensor and X Processor 4, but there’s an exposure mode dial instead of the shutter speed dial and the aperture can be adjusted either via a lens ring or a command dial on the camera body.

Essentially, the X-S10 is aimed at DSLR users who want to upgrade to mirrorless but have grown used to the classic layout of a large handgrip, electronic control dials and top-plate mode dial that has dominated the market for 30+ years. It’s also designed for those who don’t want the size, weight or expense of full-frame.

The result is a compact SLR-like camera equipped with a very effective in-body image stabilisation system (that enables up to 6EV shutter speed compensation) and a fully articulated vari-angle touchscreen. This represents a desirable combination that and Fujifilm has absolutely nailed it.

As an X-series camera, the X-S10 benefits from Fujifilm’s superb colour science and there’s an extensive collection of Film Simulation modes that can be used to give JPEGs and videos colours, tones and contrast to suit the subject, shooting conditions and photographer’s preference. As we’d expect from Fuji, video can be recorded at up 4K resolution at 30fps with no additional crop while Full HD video can be recorded at up to 240fps.

Read our Fujifilm X-S10 Review


Panasonic Lumix G9

£899.99 body only
www.panasonic.com/uk

Best Micro Four Thirds Mirrorless from Panasonic

Panasonic Lumix G9 – at a glance

  • Sensor: 20.3MP Micro Four Thirds MOS sensor
  • Viewfinder: electronic, 3,680,000-dot, 1.66x magnification (0.83x equiv.), 100%
  • Screen: 3-inch, 1,040k dot, fully articulated TFT LCD
  • ISO range: 200-25,600 (expandable to ISO 100-25,600)
  • 60fps continuous shooting
  • Five-axis Dual IS II image stabiliser
  • 4K video up to 60fps (150Mbps)
  • Dimensions: 136.9×97.3×91.6mm
  • Weight: 658g

Pitched as an outdoor and wildlife camera, the G9 should be more than capable of dealing with whatever conditions are thrown at it. Arguably the finest Micro Four Thirds format stills camera Panasonic has ever produced, the G9 backs up its sturdy construction with a winning combination of high-speed shooting at up to 60fps, fast focusing and effective in-body image stabilisation.

The G9’s Four Thirds sensor has a native file format of 4:3. You can easily switch between this and the more familiar 35mm-proportioned 3:2 (or 1:1 and 16:9) in the set-up menu, but the full 4:3 sensor coverage remains visible in the EVF as shaded bands above and below the brighter 3:2 image. Ultimately it helps with composition by letting you see what lies just outside 3:2 framing, at least above and below. As the camera records 4:3 format files whatever format is selected, you can reframe the final 3:2 image slightly if needed during processing.

Boasting a control layout as complete as most pro-level DSLRs, it’s an extremely versatile camera that’s capable of dealing with any subject. The G9 can stand a beating and is really good for adventure shoots. It has a few quirks: its touchscreen quick menus may be confusing to some and its AF-point joystick won’t let you move the AF point diagonally.

The Panasonic Lumix G9 and its tack-sharp system lenses combine portability, high image quality and reliability to make it possibly the most capable adventure-orientated camera out there for those who want to shoot outdoors in extreme conditions.

Read our Panasonic Lumix G9 Field Test


Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III

£1,049 body only
www.olympus.co.uk

Best Micro Four Thirds Mirrorless from Olympus

Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III – at a glance

  • Sensor: 20.4MP Four Thirds MOS sensor
  • Viewfinder: 2.36m-dot OLED. 0.67x magnification
  • Screen: 3-inch, 1.04m-dot articulated touchscreen
  • 121-point phase detection autofocus
  • 10fps shooting with continuous AF
  • 5-axis in-body stabilisation
  • Cinema 4K video recording
  • Dimensions: 125x85x50mm
  • Weight: 414g

This small, fully-featured and weather-sealed Micro Four Thirds camera is both a pleasure to use, and capable of great results. On the whole, the Mark III retains the core characteristics that have made the E-M5 range so appealing. Its body measures just 125x85x50mm yet finds space for an extensive complement of external controls, along with Olympus’s class-leading 5-axis in-body image stabilisation.

The main update is the addition of a 20MP sensor borrowed from the OM-D E-M1 Mark II that includes on-chip phase detection for much-improved autofocus. However the E-M5 III is also 55g lighter than its predecessor at a featherweight 414g, thanks mainly to the body shell being made from polycarbonate rather than metal. The result is a camera with a rare combination of portability, ruggedness and high capability that’s a real pleasure to use.

There are many advanced features. They include a comprehensive intervalometer and time-lapse movie mode; focus bracketing and in-camera focus stacking for close-up photography; keystone correction for converging verticals and horizontals previewed live in the viewfinder; and in-camera rectilinear conversion with the M.Zuiko Digital ED 8mm F1.8 Fisheye Pro lens. Olympus’s Live Time and Live Bulb allow you to watch long exposures build up in real time, while Live Composite overlays multiple long-exposure shots, adding only brighter areas onto the original frame. This allows light trails to be built up without overexposing the entire image.

On-chip phase detection enables fast, decisive autofocus. The camera even has a high-resolution mode that can shoot images up to 80MP in size. There’s plenty here to tempt existing E-M5 or E-M10 series owners to update or it’s an interesting option for anyone looking for a more portable alternative to a DSLR system. If you like the sound of a camera that’s small, handles well and gives attractive images, and value usability above staring at pixels on-screen, it should certainly be high on your shortlist.

Read our Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III Review


Nikon Z 50

£1,199 with 16-50mm lens
www.nikon.co.uk

Nikon Z 50 – at a glance

  • Sensor: 20.9MP APS-C DX format sensor
  • Viewfinder: 0.39in, 2,360k-dot OLED EVF
  • Screen: tilting touchscreen
  • ISO range: 100-51,200 (expandable to 204,800)
  • Nikon Z-mount
  • 11fps continuous shooting with AE/AF
  • 4K video at 30p
  • Dimensions: 126.5×93.5x60mm
  • Weight: 450g (with battery and card)

Nikon’s entry-level mirrorless model produces fine images and is a delight to use. The Nikon Z 50 was Nikon’s first shot at creating a DX-format mirrorless camera with an APS-C sensor. It shares the large Z mount and, as well as accepting new DX-format Z mount lenses, it can be used with Nikon’s ever-growing range of full-frame Z mount optics. Nikon F-mount lenses can also be paired via the FTZ mount adapter.

It has a purposeful design, good-sized handgrip and well thought through layout of controls. Part of the Z 50’s excellent feel comes down to the fact it has a magnesium-alloy top and front chassis that gives it added strength and robustness. Handling is impressive, as you would expect from Nikon, with the camera having excellent ergonomics.

The excellent electronic viewfinder and responsive touchscreen enhance the enjoyable shooting experience, and with 11fps continuous shooting and a responsive autofocus system, the Z 50 rarely feels out of its depth when challenged by fast paced subjects. Whether it’s used to capture stills or snippets of video, the Z 50 produces satisfying results.

Overall, it’s a marvellous little APS-C format camera that offers great value for money. You can’t fail to fall in love with when you’re using it and if you’re considering shooting within Nikon’s DX-format mirrorless system the Z 50 is worth a long, hard look.

Read our Nikon Z 50 Review


Fujifilm X-T4

£1,549 body only
www.fujifilm.eu/uk

Fujifilm X-T4 – at a glance

  • Sensor: 26.1MP APS-C X-Trans CMOS 4 sensor
  • Viewfinder: 0.5in, 3.69million-dot EVF
  • Screen: 3-inch, 1.62m-dot vari-angle touchscreen
  • ISO range: 160-12,800 (ISO 80-51,200 extended)
  • 15fps continuous shooting (mechanical shutter)
  • 5-axis in-body image stabilisation
  • In-camera charging via USB-C
  • Dimensions: 134.6×92.8×63.8mm
  • Weight: 607g (with battery and card)

Fujifilm has built on its outstanding X-T3 by adding in-body image stabilisation and a vari-angle screen. With high speed, impressive resolution and sophisticated autofocus, the X-T4 is arguably the finest APS-C format mirrorless camera yet, and it’s a great choice for both demanding professionals and keen enthusiasts who would like to build a smaller, lighter system.

The imaging sensor the IBIS unit is responsible for stabilising is the same 26.1-million-pixel APS-C X-Trans CMOS 4 chip as in the X-T3. This fourth generation sensor has a back-illuminated structure, excludes a low-pass filter and partners up with Fujifilm’s X-Processor 4 to deliver healthy processing speeds.

The sensitivity of the sensor is unchanged from its predecessor and spans ISO 160-12,800 (expandable to ISO 80-51,200), but thanks to the addition of a new mechanical shutter it manages to shoot even faster. The X-T3 could shoot up to 11fps using its mechanical shutter, but on the X-T4 this was increased to an impressive 15fps. A key strength of the X-T4’s image quality performance is the way it handles noise and preserves such fine detail up to its native ceiling of ISO 12,800. Shooting in Raw is recommended for the finest image quality, but the X-T4’s JPEGs are excellent. The camera also offers 4K 60p video recording.

All things considered, the Fujifilm X-T4 is a fabulous mirrorless camera that’s supported by a fine selection of XF lenses. It would make a great choice for keen enthusiasts and professionals who are conscious of size and weight and would like to build a smaller, lighter system. It’s one of the finest APS-C mirrorless cameras ever made.

Read our Fujifilm X-T4 Review


Sony Alpha 7 III

£1,749 body only
www.sony.co.uk

Sony Alpha 7 III – at a glance

  • Sensor: 24.2MP BSI-CMOS full-frame sensor
  • Viewfinder: electronic, 2,359,296-dot, 0.78x, 100% EVF
  • Screen: 3-inch, 921,600 dot, tilting LCD
  • ISO range: 50-204,800 (extended)
  • 10fps shooting
  • 4K video recording
  • 5-axis in body stabilisation
  • Dimensions: 127x96x74mm
  • Weight: 650g (with battery)

Sony’s enthusiast-focused full-frame mirrorless model is a remarkable allrounder that’s packed full of high-end features. Its 24MP sensor is supported by fast, responsive autofocus, 5-axis in-body image stabilisation (IBIS), up to 10 frames per second shooting and 4K video recording.

At the heart of the camera is a brand new sensor, a 24.2MP back-illuminated full-frame CMOS design. In concert with Sony’s Bionz X processor and front-end LSI, it offers an ISO range of 100-204,800 and 15 stops of dynamic range at low ISO. The buffer is very respectable, offering 177 JPEGs, 89 compressed raw or 42 uncompressed raw frames.

Autofocus is dramatically improved too, with the Alpha 7 III capable of phase detection using 693 points arranged across 90% of the image area. It’s claimed to be twice as fast as its predecessor, and Sony’s Eye-Detect AF is available in continuous AF mode, where on the previous model it only worked in AF-S. The 5-axis in-body stabilisation system is rated to 5 stops benefit, which is a half-stop improvement over the older Alpha 7 II.

The viewfinder is slightly larger than the A7 II’s, with a Zeiss T* coating, while the rear screen has gained touch functionality for setting the focus point and browsing through images in playback. Its handling and battery life are notably improved over its predecessor, too. You’ll find there’s a wide range of E-Mount lenses available from Sony and other manufacturers.

Discover more about the Sony Alpha 7 III


OM System ‘Olympus’ OM-1

£1,999 body only

www.olympus.co.uk

The OM System OM-1 camera in use

The OM System OM-1 camera in use

Olympus OM-1 – at a glance

  • Sensor: 20MP Four Thirds Stacked BSI Live MOS sensor
  • Viewfinder: 5.76m-dot electronic viewfinder, 1.65/0.825x magnification
  • Screen: 3-inch, 1.62m-dot vari-angle touchscreen
  • ISO range: 80-102,400 (extended)
  • 50fps with C-AF, up to 120fps fixed AF
  • 1053-point AI detect Quad Pixel AF
  • 5-axis in-body stabilisation (up to 8EV)
  • IP53 rating with specific lenses
  • Dimensions: 134.8×91.6×72.7mm
  • Weight: 599g (with battery and card)

The OM System ‘Olympus’ OM-1 is OM Digital Solutions’ 2022-launched E-M1 III update, with a brand-new, never before seen 20MP Stacked BSI Live MOS sensor, updated body design, high-resolution OLED EVF, updated vari-angle touch-screen and a completely redesigned menu system.

The new sensor, along with a new image processor, allows for high-speed continuous shooting, at 120fps at full-resolution, an improved ISO range, (up to ISO 102,400), which OMDS say will give up to 2 stops noise improvement, as well as one extra stop of dynamic range. In-body Image Stabilisation (IBIS) has long been a feature of Olympus cameras, and using 5-axis Sync IS with a compatible lens will give up to 8 stops of correction. When using a non-sync lens, you can expect up to 7 stops of IS.

The controls are all neatly positioned to make them easy to reach, and you have direct access to the most important settings, with dedicated ISO, Exposure compensation, and AF-ON buttons. There’s a dedicated video record button, and the majority of buttons and controls can be customised to your own personal preferences. The ISO button also doubles as image rating button in playback, so you can quickly give images a star rating out of 5.

The camera body has a solid metal construction, and with multiple seals it offers improved weather-sealing than other Olympus cameras, being the first to offer an IP53 rating being both dust- and splash-proof when used with specific PRO lenses.

If you enjoy shooting with Olympus cameras, then the refinements made with the OM-1, along with the improved image quality, features, and improved video options, makes this camera a real joy to use, with the updated menu systems another welcome change. Without doubt, the OM System OM-1 is the best Micro Four Thirds camera currently available (as of June 2022), and goes beyond what you would expect from a £2000 camera in terms of subject detection AF, high-speed performance, and the sheer number of useful shooting features available.

Read our OM System ‘Olympus’ OM-1 Review


Nikon Z 6II

£2,009 body only
www.nikon.co.uk

Best FF Nikon Mirrorless Camera: Nikon Z6 II

Nikon Z 6II – at a glance

  • Sensor: 24.5MP BSI-CMOS sensor
  • Viewfinder: 3.69m-dot OLED electronic viewfinder, 0.8x, 100%
  • Screen: 3.2-inch, 2,100k-dot, tilting touchscreen TFT
  • ISO range: 100-51,200
  • 5-axis in-body image stabilisation
  • Up to 14fps burst shooting
  • 4K video recording
  • Nikon Z-mount
  • Dimensions: 134×100.5×69.5mm
  • Weight: 705g (with battery and card)

This remarkably versatile full-frame mirrorless camera boasts a 24.5MP sensor, a 273-point phase detection AF system and fast burst shooting up to 14fps. Users will be bowled over by the excellent electronic viewfinder, as well as the quality of the images produced.

On the outside, the Z 6II looks almost identical to its Z 6 predecessor, and uses the same image sensor too. But, crucially, it gains a second card slot that accepts the cheaper and widely compatible SD format. The cards can be used in backup, overflow or segregated recording modes. The Z 6II also boasts dual Expeed 6 processors, which provide improved autofocus, meaning that face and eye tracking is now available during video recording for both humans and animals.

DSLR users will find all the key buttons and dials that they expect, including twin electronic controls dials for changing exposure settings (one each under the forefinger and thumb), a well-placed AF-area joystick and AF-ON button, and top-plate ISO and exposure compensation buttons.

Key features include a dust and drip resistant body design for use in demanding conditions, and 5-axis in-body image stabilisation to help keep both still images and video footage sharp, no matter what lens you use. This includes both native Z-mount optics, and the huge range of F-mount SLR lenses that can be used via the FTZ mount adapter. You also benefit from 5-axis In-Body Image Stabilisation, and 4K video recording.

Read our Nikon Z 6II hands-on look


Nikon Z 7II

£2,919 body only
www.nikon.co.uk

Best Nikon mirrorless: Nikon Z7 II

Nikon Z 7II – at a glance

  • Sensor: 45.7MP full-frame BSI CMOS sensor
  • Viewfinder: 3.69m-dot, 0.8x magnification
  • Screen: 3.2in, 2.1m-dot tilting touchscreen
  • ISO range: 64-25,600 (expandable to ISO 32-102,400)
  • Dual EXPEED 6 image processors
  • 5-axis in-body image stabilisation
  • 10fps continuous shooting (Single AF)
  • 4K/60p video
  • Dual card slots (XQD/CFexpress and SD cards)
  • Weather resistant
  • Dimensions: 134×100.5×69.5mm
  • Weight: 705g (with battery and card)

The Nikon Z 7II improves over the original Nikon Z 7 in a number of subtle but important ways, making an already very good camera, even better. The camera now features improved continuous shooting, dual card slots, and face/eye/animal detection AF.

There’s a 45.7MP full-frame sensor that provides stunning image quality, backed up by 5-axis in-body image stabilisation and fast, accurate autofocus. The viewfinder is superb, and F-mount SLR lenses can be used via the FTZ adapter. The high-resolution sensor will be appealing to landscape photographers or anyone that craves a serious amount of detail. It’s also useful for cropping if you want to shoot from a distance, too.

You get up to 10fps shooting which, while not superb for action, isn’t too bad if it’s not something you shoot relatively often. But if you’re frequently shooting action, the Z 6II and certainly the Z 9 cameras are probably better choices within Nikon’s mirrorless range. It can also shoot 4K video.

The Z 7II feels fantastic in the hand and is a delight to pick up and use. Then there’s its fabulous image quality, which is remarkably impressive and offers magnificent latitude when processing Raw files. This is a fantastic all-rounder, which works well for professionals and dedicated enthusiasts who perhaps don’t have the need or the budget for a Z 9.

Read our Nikon Z 7II Review


Canon EOS R6

£2,849 body only
www.canon.co.uk

Canon EOS R6 – at a glance

  • Sensor: 20MP full-frame sensor
  • Viewfinder: 3.69m-dot EVF, 0.76x magnification
  • Screen: 3-inch, 1.62m-dot, fully articulated touchscreen
  • ISO range: 50-204,800 (extended)
  • 20fps continuous shooting
  • 5-axis in-body image stabilisation
  • 4K 60p video
  • Dimensions: 138x98x88mm
  • Weight: 680g (including battery and card)

This is a superbly accomplished full-frame mirrorless camera, which gets almost everything right for stills photographers. Key features include superb body design and handling, excellent image quality in both JPEG and raw, fantastic high ISO performance, superb autofocus with remarkable subject recognition and effective in-body image stabilisation.

The 20MP EOS R6 does out-spec some of its 24MP rivals (such as the Nikon Z 6 and Sony A7R II) in the market. It provides a standard sensitivity range of ISO 100-102,400, that’s expandable to ISO 50-204,800 via the ISO menu. Continuous shooting operates at up to 12 frames per second using the mechanical shutter, complete with focus and exposure tracking. This increases to 20fps with the silent electronic shutter, with a massive buffer of at least 120 raw frames before the camera slows down.

In real-world use, the EOS R6’s talents extend way beyond its AF system. In fact it’s an incredibly accomplished performer which should be able to tackle any photographic task with aplomb. Its mechanical shutter is extremely quiet, which is great in situations where you don’t want to disturb the subject. Engage the electronic shutter and the camera can operate in complete silence.

With all the hype around Canon’s 45MP, 8K-capable EOS R5, it might be easy to dismiss its 20MP sibling as a cut-price alternative for those who can’t afford the real deal. But this would be a huge mistake, because the EOS R6 is a superb camera in its own right. If you’re a Canon DSLR user intrigued by the advantages of mirrorless technology, but unable to accept the EOS R as a satisfactory option, this may just be the camera you’re looking for. It works perfectly with EF-mount SLR lenses, too. With this and the R5 (featured later on, below), Canon’s rivals have plenty of cause for concern.

Read our Canon EOS R6 Review


Sony Alpha 7R IV

£3,499 body only
www.sony.co.uk

Sony Alpha 7R IV – at a glance

  • Sensor: 61MP full-frame CMOS sensor
  • Viewfinder: 5.76-million-dot EVF, 0.78x magnification
  • Screen: 3-inch, 1.44-million-dot tilt-angle touchscreen
  • ISO range: 100-32,000 (expandable to ISO 50-102,400)
  • 10fps continuous shooting
  • 5-axis in-body stabilisation
  • 4K/30fps video
  • Dimensions: 128.9×96.4×77.5mm
  • Weight: 665g (with battery and card)

With its 61MP sensor, the Sony A7R IV takes full-frame image quality to new heights, without compromising on speed or dynamic range. This sensor partners up with Sony’s BIONZ X image processor and front-end LSI, with the aim of delivering unprecedented resolution, fine gradation and a 15-stop dynamic range at the low end of its ISO 100-32,000 (expandable to ISO 50-102,400) range.

Despite an increase in resolution there’s no reduction in speed. It’ll happily shoot a continuous burst of 14-bit Raw files at 10fps for up to 7 seconds (up to 8fps in live-view continuous shooting mode) with full AF/AE tracking using its refined, low-vibration mechanical shutter or silent electronic shutter. The A7R IV’s increase in resolution also means you get a very useful 26.2MP output after cropping a full-frame image down to APS-C size. What’s more, the autofocus points remain in the same position as they are for full frame, resulting in a healthy 99% coverage across virtually the entire frame.

With an excellent viewfinder and effective in-body stabilisation, it’s the most capable all-rounder you can currently buy at this price point. You’ll find a high-resolution electronic viewfinder with 5.76M dots, and 5-axis in-body image stabilisation, helping you compose your shots, and get sharper results even when using slower shutter speeds.

The Sony A7R IV was a groundbreaker in terms of resolution in the full-frame market. By developing the world’s first 61MP full frame sensor Sony took image quality to new heights, without making a compromise on speed. The fine detail it resolves in its files is astonishing and so is the performance at high ISO. Then there’s the wide dynamic range, which offers great latitude from its raw files, and the option to switch over to APS-C mode from the touch of a button, which turns it into an accomplished camera for sport, action or wildlife.

Read our Sony Alpha 7R IV Review


Canon EOS R5

£4,199 body only
www.canon.co.uk

Canon EOS R5 – at a glance

  • Sensor: 45MP Dual Pixel CMOS AF sensor
  • Viewfinder: 5.76-million-dot electronic viewfinder, 0.76x magnification
  • Screen: 3.2-inch, 2.1m-dot, vari-angle touchscreen
  • DIGIC X image processor
  • ISO range: 100-51,200 (expandable to ISO 50-102,400)
  • 5,940 selectable autofocus positions
  • 8K/30P, 4K/120p, Full HD 60p video
  • Twin card slot (CFexpress and SD)
  • Dimensions: 138.5×97.5x88mm
  • Weight: 738g (including battery and card)

An incredibly impressive stills camera, the EOS R5 is one of the very best mirrorless cameras ever launched by Canon to date. The combination of a multi-controller (joystick), a rear thumb dial and dual card slots help make the R5 seem like a mirrorless version of the 5D Mark IV, but with the added benefit of a vari-angle touchscreen.

The EOS R5 has the ability to shoot 45MP files at a staggering 20fps in silence with full AE and AF tracking using its electronic shutter. Switch over to the mechanical shutter and the EOS R5 rattles out a burst at a brisk 12fps. It has a deep buffer to handle the high volumes of data, and records to a CFexpress card that allows maximum transfer speeds of up to 1.97GB per second and up to 180 uncompressed Raw files to be recorded continuously at 20fps. A second UHS-II compatible SD card slot is added for backup purposes, or separating still images and video between cards.

A breakthrough on the EOS R5 was the introduction of in-body image stabilisation (IBIS), which was lacking on both the EOS R and EOS RP. Canon claims it offers up to 8 stops effectiveness when paired with certain RF mount lenses, such as the RF 24-70mm f/2.8L and RF 28-70mm f/2L. In instances where the EOS R5 is used with Canon lenses that feature optical image stabilisation (IS), the lens corrects yaw and pitch while the body compensates for roll around the lens axis along with vertical and lateral movements.

It also has a superb AF system and, overall, is a remarkably accomplished stills camera. It’s only the much-reported overheating issue when shooting long 8K (30fps) and 4K (up to 120fps) video clips that prevented it from getting a maximum five stars in our review.

Read our Canon EOS R5 Review


Nikon Z 9

£5,299 body only

www.nikon.co.uk

Nikon Z9 with 100-400mm lens

With the 100-400mm telezoom, the Z9 is a superb sports or action camera

Nikon Z 9 – at a glance

  • Sensor: 45.7MP full-frame stacked CMOS sensor
  • Viewfinder: 3.69m-dot electronic viewfinder
  • Screen: 3-way tilting touchscreen
  • ISO range: 32-102,400 (extended)
  • 20fps continuous shooting in raw
  • 8K 30p video recording for up to two hours
  • 5-axis in-body stabilisation
  • Dimensions: 126.5×93.5x60mm
  • Weight: 450g (with battery and card)

The Z 9 is Nikon’s new flagship professional full-frame mirrorless camera. It’s capable of shooting 45.7MP images at 20 frames per second in raw (for more than 1,000 frames in a row), or 30fps in JPEG, with continuous autofocus tracking. A new AI subject detection AF system is capable of recognising multiple kinds of subjects, and the camera can also record 8K video for several hours without overheating.

In fact, the Nikon Z 9 offers a combination of high-end specifications and professional-level build that simply hasn’t been seen before. Drop the resolution to 11MP, and the Z9 will run at an astonishing 120 fps. Crucially, it promises the pro-level control setup and extreme durability that’s essential for photographers who make a living from their cameras.

Technically, the Z 9 breaks new ground in being the first camera of its type to eliminate the mechanical shutter completely. Instead, it relies entirely on a high-speed, low-distortion electronic shutter that’s enabled by its use of a stacked CMOS sensor. Both the Sony Alpha 1 and Canon EOS R3 employ similar technology, but only Nikon has been brave enough to take it to its logical conclusion.

Previously, Nikon split its pro DSLR lines between high-speed sports and action models and high-resolution cameras for wedding, portrait and studio work. But with the Z 9, Nikon has aimed to produce a single camera that can do anything a professional photographer might need. It is, arguably, the first mirrorless model to put itself forward as a complete replacement for any professional full-frame DSLR. You could argue that the Z9 doesn’t actually do very much that the Sony Alpha 1 doesn’t already offer, but the big difference is its chunky, robust build, integrated vertical grip for shooting with large lenses, and the familiar design and handling for long-term Nikon users. It’ll also work with their F-mount DSLR lenses via the FTZ2 adapter.

Read our Nikon Z 9 Review


Fujifilm GFX100s

£5,499 body only
www.fujifilm.eu/uk

Best Medium Format Mirrorless - Fujifilm GFX100s

Fujifilm GFX100S – at a glance

  • Sensor: 102MP medium-format CMOS sensor
  • Viewfinder: 3.69m-dot OLED viewfinder, 0.77x magnification
  • Screen: 3.2-inch, 2.35m-dot tilting touchscreen
  • ISO range: 50-102,400 (extended)
  • 5fps continuous shooting
  • 4K up to 30fps, Full HD up to 60fps video recording
  • Dimensions: 150×104.2×87.2mm
  • Weight: 900g

Before the introduction of the Fujifilm GFX100S, you would have had to spend £10,000 on the Fujifilm GFX100 in order to buy a 100MP medium format camera. Now, with the GFX100S, Fujifilm has made high-resolution medium format much more accessible, and what’s impressive is that the camera is similar in size to a full-frame DSLR.

In terms of imaging hardware, the GFX100S employs the same 102MP back-illuminated sensor and X-Processor 4 combination as the GFX100. This impressive pixel count allows you to make prints almost a metre wide at a critically-sharp 300-ppi output resolution, and considerably larger if they’re not going to be examined so closely.

One of the biggest attractions of Fujifilm cameras lies with the firm’s peerless colour science, as delivered through its Film simulation modes. These deliver a broad array of attractive colour looks that each have their uses for different subjects. New on the GFX100S is Nostalgic Neg, which is supposed to hark back to colour negative film; think Kodak Gold and you won’t be far wrong. But there’s also the punchy, saturated Velvia for landscapes, two ProNeg options for subtle, muted portraits, the superb Acros for black & white or Astia for everyday shooting.

With built-in 5-axis image stabilisation, you can also shoot the camera handheld, and get impressive results, without the normal post-processing required from more traditional medium format camera. On-chip phase detection provides rapid autofocus, and there is a growing range of GF-mount lenses. For photographers who need to shoot in the field without compromising on image quality, there’s nothing else like it. This camera delivers sumptuous image quality in a remarkably easy-to-use package, which takes up no more space in your bag than a high-end full-frame DSLR.

Read our Fujifilm GFX100S Review


Canon EOS R3

£5,879 body only

www.canon.co.uk

Canon EOS R3

With to its sophisitcated autofocus, including eye control, the EOS R3 delivers a great shooting experience

Canon EOS R3 – at a glance

  • Sensor: 24.1MP full-frame stacked CMOS sensor
  • Viewfinder: 5.76m-dot, 0.76x magnification
  • Screen: 3.2-inch, 4.2m-dot fully articulated touchscreen
  • ISO range: 100-102,400 (standard), ISO 50-204,800 (extended)
  • 4779 AF points
  • 30fps (electronic shutter), 150-frame raw buffer
  • 6K video up to 60fps; 4K UHD up to 120fps
  • Dimensions: 150×142.6×87.2mm
  • Weight: 1015g (including battery and card)

The EOS R3 is Canon’s new super-fast, action-focused, professional full-frame mirrorless camera. Indeed, the firm says this is the fastest and most capable camera it has ever made, being capable of shooting at 30 frames per second in full resolution 24MP raw. It can also record 6K raw video at 60 frames per second.

The EOS R3 is built around an all-new 24.1MP full-frame stacked CMOS sensor, which offers a standard sensitivity range of ISO 100-102,400 (expandable to ISO 50-204,800). The stacked architecture brings remarkable speed, including a world-record top shutter speed of 1/64,000sec, and the ability to combine flash with the silent electronic shutter at a sync speed of 1/180sec. The shutter lag is just 20ms, which is so short that Canon offers a menu option to lengthen it to match its DSLRs.

But arguably its most exciting feature is a new twist on an old Canon technology, eye-control focus. This means the camera can detect what the user is looking at in the viewfinder, and then autofocus on it. This futuristic-sounding feature was found on several of Canon’s 35mm film SLRs in the 1990s, but the big difference lies in the way it now works in concert with subject recognition technology. Eye Control AF employs an array of infrared LEDs to determine where you’re looking in the viewfinder, which is indicated by a circular blue cursor. The camera then uses this information to select a subject for tracking when the shutter button is held half-pressed. The system must be calibrated to each photographer’s eye, but this is straightforward.

As is becoming increasingly standard, 5-axis in-body image stabilisation (IBIS) is built in. This works together with optically stabilised lenses to provide up to 8 stops of stabilisation (according to CIPA standard ratings). There’s no IBIS-based high-resolution multi-shot mode, but given the camera’s target audience, that’s no great surprise (or loss).

The Canon EOS R3 is an intoxicatingly brilliant camera to shoot with. It boasts one of the most sophisticated autofocus systems around, but makes it remarkably easy to use, allowing you to change settings quickly to suit the situation. You can buy the brilliant EOS R6 for less than half the price, and spend the money saved on some very nice lenses. But for Canon users who demand the ultimate speed and autofocus performance, the EOS R3 is the camera to get.

Read our Canon EOS R3 Review


Sony Alpha 1

£6499 body only
www.sony.co.uk

Best Sony? Sony Alpha 1

Sony Alpha 1 – at a glance

  • Sensor: 50.1MP Exmor RS CMOS
  • Viewfinder: 9.44m-dot, 0.9x magnification
  • Screen: 3-inch, 1.44m-dot tilting touchscreen
  • ISO range: 100-32,000 (expandable to ISO 50-102,400)
  • 759 phase-detection AF points
  • 30fps continuous shooting
  • 5-axis in-body stabilisation
  • 8K video up to 30fps, 4K up to 120fps
  • Dimensions: 128.9×96.9×80.8mm
  • Weight: 737g

Sony’s latest flagship model, the Alpha 1, boasts the kind of spec sheet that photographers could only dream of before. Previously we’ve had to choose between resolution or speed, but it delivers both in spades. In terms of pixel count, its 50.1MP full-frame sensor is surpassed in a similar price bracket only by the firm’s own 61MP Alpha 7R IV and Fujifilm’s 102MP medium-format GFX100S…

However, this is combined with the ability to shoot at a startling 30 frames per second, which can be matched by very few other cameras, and all at considerably lower resolutions. The fact that the Alpha 1 can shoot at 50MP and 30fps while adjusting focus and exposure between frames is unprecedented. Oh, and it records 8K video at 30fps and 4K video recording at 120fps.

Sony built the Alpha 1 around an all-new Exmor RS stacked CMOS sensor, in which three chips are effectively sandwiched on top of each other, with the light-sensitive photodiodes connected first to a memory layer, with a processing layer underneath. In principle, this maximises light capturing efficiency, and enables rapid pixel readout, while keeping electronic read noise to a minimum. As a result, the sensor promises an impressive 15 stops of dynamic range, while providing a standard sensitivity range up to ISO 32,000 (expandable up to ISO 102,400).

You also get an impressively quick autofocus system and 5-axis in-body image stabilisation. With the Alpha 1, Sony rewrote the rule book for what we can expect a camera to do. It offers higher resolution than almost anything else, combined with astonishing shooting speeds. This is backed up by an extraordinary AF system that can track moving subjects with unerring accuracy. The obvious people who will benefit from the ability to shoot 50MP images at 30fps are professional sports photographers. Designed to be the ultimate sports and video camera, the only thing you need to decide is if it meets your needs and is worth the price!

Read our Sony Alpha 1 Review


Further reading

Best lenses for mirrorless camera systems

Why it’s time to change to mirrorless

Best Nikon Mirrorless Cameras To Buy in 2022

Best Canon mirrorless cameras in 2022

Best second-hand full-frame mirrorless cameras


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