The best cameras to capture a year filled with new memories.
It is that time of the year, and like every year it’s going to be fraught with new memories and experiences. The moments to come may be spent with family and friends, but they will come and go in a flash.
But memories are tied to emotions, and should these emotions be lacking in any way, the memories will fade away. All the pictures are like wine. The older they get the more sweet and precious they become.
But in order to have those pictures to behold, you first need a camera and not just any camera but it should be among the best cameras you can get this year.
Why get a camera when I have got a smartphone camera?
This is the first thing any prospective camera owner will ask. Why get a camera when I have already paid a premium to have one on my phone? The answer will cater to two factors, one that you don’t actually have a premium phone camera and two, that your phone camera is top of the line.
If you don’t have a camera that is from a top of the line smartphone, then you already probably know deep down inside that it’s just not good enough. It’s like playing a video game on console and playing on smartphones. They are simply not built to accomplish a special feature.
Sure a smartphone offers handy features and convenience, but it lacks the tuning and options required by the art of photography. Although you can take a perfectly nice shot with your phone’s rear camera, it’s still going to be a long shot to one taken with a dedicated camera.
Now let’s move on to the second case. Let’s say you indeed have a great camera or cameras installed on your smartphone. But the fact remains that it’s your personal smartphone which you have probably locked up for privacy reasons. You won’t just hand people your phone just so they can see the picture. You’ll have to share them which leads us to our next point…
Whatsapp photo sharing
Whatsapp photo sharing has become the go-to method for sharing pictures with smartphone users. You might wonder why the flood of memes and images we get every day on Whatsapp does not clog up your phone. That is because Whatsapp compresses all the pictures shared through the app.
So what is the point of your 64 MP HD rear camera when the picture it takes gets reduced to a shadow of its former glory?
I am not saying a similar fate does not befall pictures taken from a camera, but it does become much more unlikely.
It’s all about convenience. With your phone, it is just convenience on top of convenience so it becomes a no brainer to share on Whatsapp. In the end, what happens is that your precious memories become buried under the daily blizzard of memes and other images.
What I am trying to say is that the value of good pictures becomes diminished. So much so that you might never take another look at the picture again.
What is important to realize is that only that will hold value to you what you give value to.
However, if instead you maintain properly organized pictures by events, the value is not only created but also maintained.
By investing in a camera, you are promising to yourself that you will cherish the memories you capture. Anyway, that’s enough, for now, on why a dedicated camera is still relevant to casual photography.
Capture this year’s memories with the best cameras for the new year
Now that we have established why getting a dedicated camera might be a good idea, let’s move on to the actual cameras worth buying this year.
Selection Criteria for the Best Cameras in 2020
We have handpicked only the best cameras in the plethora of cameras available in the market. Here are some of the filters we put into place to ensure we get the best selection:
The higher the cost the better the specifications of the camera. But we don’t really believe that. We only care for the products which are actually worth spending on without spending a fortune.
A camera shouldn’t scare you off. It should be handy and easy to use so when a moment worth capturing presents itself, you are not stuck in the settings.
It should perform its designated job with a reasonable result. This usually conflicts with price, so some trade-offs have to be made.
Types of cameras you can get: Buying Guide for cameras in 2020
Cameras have come a long way. Things used to be so simple. But today there are a few different types of cameras in the market, each with their pros and cons. Let’s take a brief look at each of these.
If you want an observable improvement in the quality of your pictures when compared with smartphone cameras, then this is the way to go. But it won’t do much else.
The ease of use simply carries over from your smartphone cameras. Sure, there are additional options unavailable in the smartphone cameras, but Compact cameras lack the control that other advanced cameras have to offer.
This also makes then very portable. You can easily carry one around in your pockets. However, don’t expect the option of changing the camera lens anytime soon. The built-in lens is factory set and irreplaceable.
Looking for a gift for a friend? Check out this article.
The DSLR cameras are the cameras for the professionals. It sits at the top of the camera food-chain often unchallenged, however, recently Mirrorless cameras are giving it a run for its money. But we’ll discuss those later.
A DSLR camera is like a full-blown personal computer with high specs, while the other types of cameras could be like laptops or tablets.
The DSLR camera offers all the fine-tuning features available. Everything that is possible to control is in your control. The only downside is that it is quite bulky and takes a while to learn. But the wide range of aftermarket lenses available is unmatched in any other camera type.
There is a specialized lens available for every type of situation. For instance, a Macro lens is great for close up photography while a Zoom lens will let you zoom much more than the stock lens and so on.
Mirrorless cameras are the electric cars of the camera industry. They are the newest, boldest and future defining thing that’s happened to the dedicated camera technology.
The reason why they are called Mirrorless cameras is the absence of the reflex lens present in DSLR cameras. They come with an electronic viewfinder or no viewfinder.
But their main selling point is that they are lighter and smaller than DSLR cameras and also slightly more affordable. However, they may experience delays in their electronic viewfinders.
Moreover, there is a comparatively smaller collection of lenses and accessories available for the camera.
The bottom line is that if you are looking to go full professional, go for DSLR cameras, however, if it’s anything less, then Mirrorless cameras will be more than enough.
Bridge cameras are like cousins to DSLR cameras. The resemblance is uncanny. There is just one distinctive feature, you are stuck with one lens.
Although the irremovable lens is quite versatile, they tend to be optimized for taking pictures of distant objects. But they make up for it by being more affordable than both Mirrorless cameras and DSLR cameras.
Additionally, they offer most of the manual fine-tunings that the latter two types of cameras offer. And the superzoom is also a nifty feature. You just can’t get enough of the Moon pictures.
There are also other camera types available like the Single Reflex Lens (SLR) Camera but well just continue towards the best cameras available in 2020. As new cameras arrive, we will see if they can make a spot on this list.
Best cameras available in 2020: Summary
Best cameras available in 2020: Details
Sony Alpha A6500 Review
The Sony A6500 is a full-fledged mirrorless camera. It comes with an electronic viewfinder which adds to its functionality but also its price. This is the camera to get if you are totally convinced that a mirrorless camera is exactly what you need.
It has all the features for video making as well. With 4K recording at both 25p and 30p, the camera actually shoots at 6K and scales it down to 4K. This makes for an even finer level of detail. The touchscreen makes it more convenient to select focus points, just like on a smartphone.
Although it does have some features missing. For instance, the lack of an audio jack means you can’t listen to the sound recorded before transferring to your phone or laptop.
Canon PowerShot SX720 Review
The Canon Powershot shines in its optical zoom capacity of 40x. Although, a picture shot in a 40x zoom will naturally not be of high quality. So as long as you keep the zoom within 15x or so, the picture will remain clean.
It is a point-and-shoot camera that requires no experience or know-how. The rubber strips are placed in convenient locations for a better grip.
Moreover, the camera is pretty good for taking multiple shots at the same time. It can snap around 6.3 shots per second, which is pretty good. The focus is also quick.
Nikon D7500 Review
The Nikon D7500 exists at the sweet spot of performance, versatile features, and an affordable price. There are trade-offs in all areas but they are well balanced.
It takes the place of the now-discontinued Nikon D7200 and improves upon it. Although in terms of performance and other features, it is below D500, which is a much more powerful and professional DSLR camera. However, the latter is also more expensive.
It shares the amazing high ISO setting of its more powerful cousin D500. The D7500 also works nicely for videos with 4K video capture and the touchscreen helps too.
To read more about basic photography terminology like ISO, go here.
Nikon D3500 Review
The Nikon D3500 is easily the best entry-level DSLR camera that you can buy. Although it comes with very small changes to its predecessor, the D3400, the camera has subtle changes that make it more responsive, fresh and more accessible to first time DSLR buyers.
It is straight forward and comparatively easier to learn to use. The image quality delivered is good all-around while the autofocus system is responsive.
In the videos department, it lacks 4K shooting, which is not a big deal as not many displays are even capable of displaying that resolution. Moreover, the fixed rear screen means that you can’t keep viewing what you capture from a different angle.
Fujifilm Instax Mini 9 Review
The Fujifilm Instax Mini 9 is the cheapest Instax yet. So it is a good time for an upgrade or to try one of the Instax cameras. The special thing about Instax cameras is that they print out the picture in a special film available for the camera.
You can get a passport-sized photograph of yourself without having to go to a shop to get it printed. Although be sure to keep the light conditions well balanced because the camera will print a brighter picture if the light is even a bit excessive.
But the vintage feeling it gives along with a kick of nostalgia is well worth it. If you are the kind of person who would have a picture of your loved one with you in your wallet or purse, then you may consider getting the camera. But don’t expect too much from it, because the small picture size will probably leave you wanting more.
Canon EOS 2000D Review
The Canon EOS 2000D is a beginner’s camera from Canon. It is simple and easy to use and an acceptable alternative to Nikon 3500D. It offers a good photo quality and I guess if you prefer Canon over Nikon, then you could go for this camera as an entry-level DSLR.
The camera does not have any special looks. This may be a deal-breaker for some, but the only other drawback in this camera is that the zoom in the stock lens is not as smooth. This is not a problem if you are looking to buy aftermarket lenses.
Canon EOS 2000D offers easy to navigate menus, large and well-labeled buttons, good photo quality and a battery life that can last for 500 shots on an average.
Sony RX100 VII Premium Review
The Sony RX100 VII Premium is one of the best performing compact cameras. However, it has a price tag to match with some features missing, like touch screen. It does have a great image quality and provides 4K video recordings.
The camera offers one of the best autofocus for a camera of this type. Moreover, you will experience less noise even in low ISO conditions. The camera comes with a 1-inch sensor, but the zoom it provides is impressive for this size.
However, the battery size is far from impressive. It will still cover 250 shots on average. You can save some battery by using the viewfinder to snap pictures rather than the screen. Even so, it is one of the best compact cameras in 2020.
Canon PowerShot SX540 Review
Here’s the first Bridge camera in the list. You may have observed something is different in this camera. Most bridge cameras are distinctive because of their huge fixed lens which provides a large range of zoom. The Canon PowerShot SX540 does the same, albeit with a smaller lens.
This makes the camera more portable and easier to handle. It provides most of the advanced features as DSLR cameras. Although RAW format images are not available. RAW format images allow more options for postprocessing of images on computers.
The picture quality is good and in the videos department, the recording is limited to HD resolution and a maximum of 60 frames per second. However, the battery size will let you take around 205 shots, which is not very impressive.
Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II Review
The Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II Mirrorless camera lets you control every aspect of snapping your pictures. The only catch is that you have to learn how to. There is a plethora of options, features, and customizable buttons.
While more features are usually welcome but combined with the extra buttons, it makes this camera more difficult to learn. Moreover, there is no 4K video recording but that is usually not a big deal unless you own a 4K display.
The Mark II really shines when it comes to aesthetics. It comes in a vintage-inspired design and in the silver color variant, that feeling is better captured. The analog-style buttons and leather covering also adds to it. The picture quality is top of the line.
Sony RX10 IV Review
The Sony RX10 IV Bridge camera offers a 25X zoom. It is half of the Canon PowerShot SX540 but offers a good image quality. It has features that would really help amateur filmmakers.
In a nutshell, RX10 IV is a good jack of all trades camera. Both pictures and videos are of high quality and the Zoom lens offers great detail. As with all bridge cameras, the lens is still fixed, but the versatile lens performs well in most situations. Although pictures tend to be overexposed in Auto mode.
Sony still has to make some efforts into making their in-camera menus a bit more user-friendly. Overall, the camera makes up for its shortcomings with nifty features like the super-slow-motion video capture.