Best Mirrorless Cameras – 2019 Buyer’s Guide Review

Are you on the hunt for the best mirrorless cameras to date?

Look no further, because this guide will help you in finding the best model for your specific needs.

Scroll down, and keep reading so you can clear your ambiguities and shop with ease. 

Comparison Chart of the Best Mirrorless Cameras

PRODUCT DETAILS
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Sony a7 III

  • Compatible with Sony E mount lenses
  • Best overall and best full-frame mirrorless camera
  • Up to 10fps Silent or Mechanical Shutter with AE/AF tracking
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Nikon Z6

  • 273 pt-sensor phase that can sense the AF system
  • Nikon-created 24.5MP backside well-lit image sensor
  • Has a huge, full-frame Z mount for game-changing optical functionality, making it the runner-up
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Fujifilm X-T30

  • DCI and UHD 4K/30p capture using the full width of the sensor
  • Hybrid AF system has 425 phase-detect points for the whole frame
  • 26.1MP APS-C X-Trans BSI-CMOS 4 sensor, making it the best for the money
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Sony a7

  • Can go up to 4fps for speedy continuous shooting
  • Provides a wide range for ISO of 100-25600 and AUTO ISO 100-6400
  • 24.3 MP full-frame CMOS sensor, making it the best mirrorless camera under $1000
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Fujifilm X-T100

  • 91-point hybrid AF system
  • ISO range of 100-51200 (fully expanded)
  • 24MP APS-C CMOS sensor, making it the best mirrorless camera under $500
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Sony Alpha a6500

  • APS-C CMOS sensor, 24.2MP
  • 3.0-inch, vari-angle touchscreen, 921,000 dots
  • 4K video capture with no pixel binning, making it the best mirrorless camera for video
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Sony Alpha a6000

  • Has a sensitivity range of EV0 to EV20
  • Compatible with Sony E Mount lenses
  • Best mirrorless camera for beginners and best for travel
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Panasonic Lumix GH5

  • Best mirrorless camera for professionals
  • Dual-image stabilization to eradicate blurriness
  • 4K video capture records smoothly at 4K 60P/50P
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What is a Mirrorless Camera and How Does it Work?

A mirrorless camera, as the name itself proposes, is mostly like a DSLR camera, but without a mirror inside it. They take beautiful photos and are lightweight and far more portable than a regular camera. They have advanced technological features that allow them to compete with DSLR cameras and give you all the perks of photography and quality you would want from a camera. 

Mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras (MILC) are camera systems that allow you to use lenses interchangeably. Since such a camera outperforms DSLRs without the mirror mechanism, it is quite popular and super compact and portable. With regards to how they function, in a mirrorless camera, the light goes through to the image sensor with the help of a lens, which allows it to display a preview of what the image will look like on the LCD screen. It meshes up the high-quality features of a good DSLR camera and eliminates the bulkiness you feel when holding a regular camera.    

How Do I Choose a Mirrorless Camera?

In order to figure out which mirrorless camera model to purchase, you must consider the following key aspects before adding the product to your cart.

Lens Availability

A high-quality lens can up your game in the camera industry instantly. Even if you have a camera with a small sensor and fewer pixels, a good lens can change your photography, and hence, should be the first thing you look for before purchasing a mirrorless camera.

Size of Sensor

The depth of field each format delivers in a mirrorless camera depends on the sensor size. Bigger sensors and higher pixels can certainly yield more detail if you are willing to sacrifice the depth of field. However, if you want to maintain the same depth of field, larger sensor sizes don’t always provide a resolution advantage. 

Durability

If you’re looking for a camera that’s weather-resistant, you need to find a model that is robustly built for the extreme conditions you’re taking photos in. However, in order for a worry-free, fully weatherproof experience, the lenses attached need to have the same durability level. Models in Sony, Fuji, and Olympus are created for rugged use, which allows them to be water, dust, and freeze-resistant. If you engage in photography in these extreme situations, then take a look at this factor, as well. 

Quick Take - Best Mirrorless Cameras

Before we dive into our review, here are the best mirrorless cameras:

  1. Sony a7 III
  2. ​Nikon Z6
  3. ​Fujifilm X-T30

Review of the Best Mirrorless Cameras

Now that you’ve read about all the necessary features to know before getting a mirrorless camera, let’s jump into the different models out there you can pick and choose from. Here are the best models for a mirrorless camera you can opt for. 

Best Overall and Best Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera: 
Sony a7 III

Sony a7 III Full-Frame Mirrorless Interchangeable-Lens Camera Optical with 3-Inch LCD, Black (ILCE7M3/B)

PROS

  • 693 phase-detection AF-points
  • Uncropped 4K video with maximum coverage
  • Hybrid-Log-Gamma feature supporting HDR workflow
  • 24/3 Megapixel full-frame sensor for high-resolution and unbeatable detail
  • Reduces noise in high-resolution images with up to 1.5-stop improvement in photo quality

CONS

  • Has limited touchscreen control
  • Not as weather-resistant and robust
  • Does not provide 10-bit video output like Panasonic's GH5s

What Recent Buyers Report

Users find this to be the best camera on the market. With fabulous lens performance, its high ISO shots are simply amazing. The most prominent benefit for most users is the in-body stabilization called the SteadyShot, which works perfectly for non-stabilized lenses in mirrorless cameras. It has awesome auto-focus and flawless low-light performance, as well.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera is far from being just basic, it is a full-frame camera with supreme features and qualities. Even though it doesn't have the most megapixels or the fastest bursts, it’s a good mesh of resolution, speed, features, and price point. These make it an awesome camera overall for all kinds of photographers and for most kinds of photography.

Who Will Use This Most

This camera has all the necessary updates and provides a bang for the buck. It is an amazing camera for generalist photographers, as well as an ideal purchase for wedding and event photography, and can even be used for sports photography. It’s a multi-purpose camera that can do a lot of things right.

Bottom Line

The A7 III really is quite the camera. The 24-megapixel camera offers outstanding image quality and high ISO performance with a wide range. In addition, it promises supreme quality images, super-fast auto-focus with an amazing build, brilliant 4K video, and great battery life.

Runner-up:
 Nikon Z6

Nikon Z6 Full Frame Mirrorless Camera Body

PROS

  • Provides a high-resolution EVF
  • Touchscreen interface for ease of use
  • 12fps burst shooting for quick imagery
  • Amazing performance of the AF system and sensor
  • In-body image stabilization good for handheld shooting

CONS

  • Only has a single memory card slot
  • Battery life limited compared to a DSLR
  • Provides very few native lens selections

What Recent Buyers Report

Those who are loyal to Nikon as a brand have found this camera to be truly one of the best. Its build quality is also outstanding. It gives detailed images with natural colors, especially skin tones. Nikon's colors are always a standout, and the Z6 follows this tradition.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Z6 is a camera that works as hard as you do. It is perhaps the most flexible camera ever created. It has a mesh of speed, resolution, and low-light performance, complete with the advantages of a build that is light and easy to carry, and a radical new full-frame lens mount with compatible lenses. This is the best that you can get at Nikon.

Who Will Use This Most

The Z6 is still a gripping camera for anyone exploring the full-frame camera area. The image quality is amazing. In addition, the AF performance is brilliant due to the updated firmware and the video features are a good stepping stone for photographers who want to venture into video shooting.

Bottom Line

This camera is a total all-rounder for photography enthusiasts who want a perfect balance between resolution, speed, and low-light performance. It has the features you look for in a camera combined with the benefits of a lightweight mirrorless design, a revolutionary full-frame lens mount, and matched lenses.

Best for the Money:
 Fujifilm X-T30

Fujifilm X-T30 Mirrorless Digital Camera, Silver (Body Only)

PROS

  • Exceptional 4K video
  • Exceptional image quality
  • Traditional exposure controls
  • 100% phase detect AF coverage
  • Powerful and efficient auto-focus

CONS

  • Lacks image stabilization, as well as weather sealing
  • Grip is not ideal for larger lenses and photographers with larger hands
  • Rear touchscreen-only tilts up and down, unlike the X-T3 which also tilts to the right as well

What Recent Buyers Report

Users find this camera to be the best all-purpose camera under $1000 right now. The X-T30’s still image quality, video quality, ease of use, and good portability all add up to a stellar package. Another best feature is its ability to use older manual focus lenses. This, coupled with the focus peaking feature, allows you to pin your focus confidently.

Why it Stands Out to Us

Wonderful images aside, there are a lot of other exciting features about the X-T30, including great auto-focusing, fast frame rates, a striking selection of 4K video features, and of course, this being Fuji, a gorgeous exterior. The Fujifilm X-T30 combines beauty with amazing features to satisfy the needs of content creators, regardless of their skill level.

Who Will Use This Most

For photographers on the go that want a lightweight, power-packed camera that has supreme functionality and takes up less space in the gear bag, the Fujifilm X-T30 is most certainly a contender that should be on your shortlist of mirrorless cameras. It is also a great investment for content creators.

Bottom Line

If you’re a relatively new blogger or have recently started photography, this lens may be a great choice for you. It has many high-end features at a remarkably low price point and will not disappoint you with its stunning performance and outstanding quality.

Best Mirrorless Camera Under $1000:
Sony a7

Sony a7 Full-Frame Mirrorless Digital Camera - Body Only

PROS

  • Enhanced battery for longer use
  • Fast and responsive auto-focus system
  • Updated button for spontaneous control
  • PlayMemories Camera App allows feature upgrades and greater personalization
  • Provides amazing features for the price and is ergonomically friendly, as it’s super light

CONS

  • AF point lighting needs to be better
  • Complicated menu system is not user-friendly
  • Thin plastic port covers are not weather-resistant

What Recent Buyers Report

This is an amazing, lightweight camera that is packed with performance and high-quality features. The full-frame sensor is excellent and the electronic viewfinder is a great addition. Moreover, it is easy to hold and prevents wrist discomfort.

Why it Stands Out to Us

No other full-frame, interchangeable-lens camera in the market is as light as this one. It has 24.3 megapixels to give you richer, finer images, and comes with a 2.4 million-dot OLED viewfinder that brings images to life. Other features also include Wi-Fi sharing and a stretchable shoe system. It gives you the best full-frame functionality in a portable size and fulfills all your camera dreams and needs.

Who Will Use This Most

With its upgraded sensor design and additional new features, this is a splendid camera suitable for both photo and video shooting and can work in various areas. It is also polished for enhanced speed and gives you brilliant low-light performance in all circumstances.

Bottom Line

The Sony A7 is easily the best example of the highest-quality full-frame camera available in the market. It’s an extraordinary model for the money and is a great addition to the Sony A7-series because of its wonderful features. If you want the best mirrorless camera under $1000, then this option is for you.

Best Mirrorless Camera Under $500:
 Fujifilm X-T100

Fujifilm X-T100 Mirrorless Digital Camera w/XC15-45mmF3.5-5.6 OIS PZ Lens - Champagne Gold

PROS

  • Excellent JPEG quality
  • Articulating LCD allows for selfies
  • Wide selection of excellent lenses
  • USB charging and a long battery life
  • High-resolution viewfinder useful for shooting in bright light

CONS

  • Prone to overexposure
  • CMOS sensor is not X-Trans
  • Using the touch-swipe functions is awkward with touch shooting or auto-focusing

What Recent Buyers Report

This is a little camera but is power-packed with brilliant performance. It has great build quality. It provides excellent image quality with richly saturated color and good sharpness. It also allows access to all of Fuji’s truly outstanding range of X-mount lenses and gives a bang for the buck.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera has a great, retro look to it and a flip-out selfie screen, as well. Topping all of this off is built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, which provides automatic image transfer to your smart device. It also has a modest 430-shot battery life from the given lithium-ion cell.

Who Will Use This Most

This is the best camera to invest in if you’re a beginner at photography and want to get familiar with the basics. However, it is also a great purchase for professionals and enthusiasts to have fun and experiment with it. If you’re looking for the cheapest mirrorless camera with amazing specs, then get this one.

Bottom Line

This camera gives you a DSLR-type viewfinder feature at a reasonable price that doesn’t break the bank. This is a model that comes in the affordability range of a normal beginner or a regular photographer on a budget but also has the potential to be more than just an average mirrorless camera.

Best Mirrorless Camera for Video:
 Sony Alpha a6500

Sony Alpha a6500 Mirrorless Digital Camera w/ 2.95' LCD (Body Only)

PROS

  • Reputable buffer capacity
  • Compatible with various lenses
  • Lightning-quick AF system with great accuracy
  • Expansive video options and the world’s fastest auto-focus
  • Has a rugged build and the shutter mechanism is quite durable

CONS

  • Has a dim rear LCD
  • Does not have a headphone port
  • Average battery life, external batteries are a requirement

What Recent Buyers Report

This camera is an amazing product, with superb specifications, even ideal for the "DSLR snob". It has in-body stabilization, a faster processor using the LSI chip, and great picture quality. It can also produce mesmerizing bokeh images. Also, it is easy to use, portable, and a really good investment for professionals and beginners alike.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The A6300 is one of the best Sony mirrorless cameras out there and is what you need if you’re planning on shooting stills or video. The quality of the image is also up to par and comparatively far better than most brands. The auto-focus and 4K will knock your socks off. Overall, this camera is a great asset for videographers.

Who Will Use This Most

As a photographer, beginner, or otherwise, you will definitely enjoy this camera. The A6500 has superb features and image quality, and is a lot faster than most models in the market. It is also more technologically advanced and delivers amazing features, if you are willing to dig a little deeper into your pocket.

Bottom Line

The A6500 ranks as one of the best of Sony's APS-C series of mirrorless cameras, and it's a particularly well-made model for capturing moving subjects and shooting seamless videos in high-quality. If you want an upgrade for your older camera or a mirrorless camera suited for your video needs, then this model is highly recommended.

Best Mirrorless Camera for Beginners and Best for Travel:
 Sony Alpha a6000

Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Digital Camera 24.3 MP SLR Camera with 3.0-Inch LCD - Body Only (Black)

PROS

  • Has a slanted rear display
  • Gives you sharp OLED EVF
  • Speedy and quick auto-focus
  • 11.1fps bursts with tracing focus
  • Super brilliant and high-quality ISO image
  • Crisp JPEG images with few sharpening artifacts at low ISOs

CONS

  • LCD is not a touchscreen
  • Start-up of the camera is slow and sluggish
  • Very basic Wi-Fi remote control and no GPS tagging

What Recent Buyers Report

This is an excellent camera for beginners that flawlessly captures landscapes, as well as soft portraits. It is also a photography beast and is priced less than a high-end DSLR, while also adding a significant number of supreme features. The controls and interface are also super user-friendly.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera has technologically-advanced features, such as the BIONZ X processing that allows you to capture real-time, real-life images with beautiful textures and richer details. It can also capture amazing low-light images with an ISO range of 100-25600. Moreover, it has the world’s fastest auto-focus to capture moving subjects flawlessly.

Who Will Use This Most

As mentioned before, this is an amazing device for beginners who have just found their love for photography and want to explore different arenas. It’s great even for professionals or travelers because of its impeccable image quality and its ability to capture images right at the moment.

Bottom Line

Whether you have recently entered the photography industry or are looking for a lightweight and high-performing camera for your traveling needs, don’t hesitate to check out this model. It is very promising and packed with power and performance, giving you beautiful images each time.

Best Mirrorless Camera for Professionals:
 Panasonic Lumix GH5

PANASONIC LUMIX GH5 4K Digital Camera, 20.3 Megapixel Mirrorless Camera with Digital Live MOS Sensor, 5-Axis Dual I.S. 2.0, 4K 4:2:2 10-Bit Video, Full-Size HDMI Out, 3.2-Inch LCD, DC-GH5 (Black)

PROS

  • Large and bright EVF
  • Brilliant video specification
  • Fast and noiseless performance
  • Durable build for harsh environments
  • Touchscreen interface, proving to be quick and user-friendly

CONS

  • Area AF mode not as quick in video mode
  • ISO range could be a little more extensive
  • Image quality is not the best in the market

What Recent Buyers Report

This camera is a photography industry-changer and has the best built-in stabilization, so there is no chance of getting a blurry image. It has a great battery life, is easy and light to hold, and has custom buttons. It is a powerhouse of a camera, with amazing features and a large and bright EVF.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This camera is the zenith of perfection. It has the best 4K quality any mirrorless camera can provide, and allows you to capture videos and photos in sharp detail. It also has a ten-bit internal recording feature for subtle imagery, such as sunsets. This is as professional as it can get for a mirrorless camera.

Who Will Use This Most

This camera is made for professionals who want to capture silky-smooth videos and stills in ultra 4K. This is particularly a great option if you’re a videographer on the hunt for the best-quality mirrorless camera. It is quiet, powerful, and highly recommended for any professional out there.

Bottom Line

If you don’t want to settle for less and have the extra coin to splurge on a high-end, high-quality camera that ticks all the features of what a professional mirrorless camera should provide, then this final model is for you. The GH5 is a great camera recommended by experts for experts in the photography industry and guarantees you the full value for your money.

Benefits of Investing in a Quality Mirrorless Camera

Now that you’ve gone through the different models of mirrorless cameras, let’s discuss a few advantages of getting one. 

Size and Mass

DSLR cameras are relatively larger than mirrorless cameras in terms of their build because DSLR cameras have mirrors installed in them. This lets you carry a mirrorless camera easily due to its portability and makes room for other materials in your bag.

Faster Auto-focus in Live View

Mirrorless cameras always have better contrast AF speeds than DSLRs. If you shoot videos frequently or find yourself holding the camera below the waistline or above the head and tend to photograph using the back screen, you'll get a faster focus time with a mirrorless camera. This holds particularly true if you want to include the objects that are at the end of the frame. 

OLED Viewfinders

While mirrorless cameras do not have the optical viewfinder (OVF) or avoid it, the more expensive models substitute it with an electronic version (EVF). EVFs have the advantage of showing a live performance of how the sensor will record the image, allowing you to see the exposure and white balance outcomes before you shoot. You can also choose to enhance and customize screen information and even permit a magnified view for manual focus.

How to Clean a Mirrorless Camera Sensor

If you don’t wish to spend additional money on getting your mirrorless camera sensor clean, then this guide below will help you. The link to the steps in detail is also attached so you can watch the video, as well. 

  1. First, you need a pack of baby wipes. Don’t worry, these are not for the sensor! For the sensor, you need a Full-Frame DSLR Sensor Cleaning Kit.
  2. Use the baby wipes to clean the dust off the mount. You can use a clean swab to clean the insides of the mount, as well.
  3. Use a baby wipe to clean the mount of the sensor gently, making sure it’s not too wet. 
  4. Pull out the contents of your DSLR Sensor Cleaning Kit, and put one drop of the liquid given in the kit on both sides of the swab (which is also available in the kit).
  5. From the top, swipe the sensor using the swab to the bottom. Use the swab to clean the corners of the mount as well. You’re done!

Here’s the link to the video for a more detailed guide:

Conclusion

This guide was made to  give you a detailed understanding of what makes a good mirrorless camera. Hopefully, this article gave you insight on which model to shop for and which is best for your photography needs. Best of luck with your shopping! 

People Also Ask

After reading the above article, if you still have some ambiguities that need to be addressed, then look at these frequently asked questions to clear your mind and gain a better understanding of mirrorless cameras. The answers are given below, so let’s dive in: 

Why Are Mirrorless Lenses So Big?

The reason why some of the lenses for mirrorless cameras may be too big is that they are designed for digital sensors. These sensors need more color correction for chromatic aberration compared to film lenses. Larger lenses are also used to omit color fringing when taking an image. 

Are Mirrorless Cameras Smaller?

Yes, mirror cameras are definitely smaller than DSLR cameras because they do not have a mirror or other related parts of the mirror that are generally embedded in a DSLR. This makes the camera lightweight, portable, and travel-friendly to use, as well. 

Are Mirrorless Lenses Lighter?

Just because mirrorless cameras are smaller, it does not necessarily mean the mirrorless lens will be small, as well. If you have a smaller sensor format, though, then you can have smaller lenses, too. It really depends on the type of model you own and the lens that is compatible with it, but most often than not, mirrorless lenses are not lighter than DSLRs. 

Do Mirrorless Cameras Need Special Lenses?

Mirrorless cameras use the bayonet-style mount for adjoining different lenses to the camera. Every manufacturer produces different mounts, so you cannot use any mirrorless lens for a mirrorless camera. However, it is possible that some manufacturers also produce lenses for your specific camera mount. 

What is the Difference Between a Mirrorless Camera and DSLR?

Mirrorless cameras are lighter, portable, and faster, as well as provide better-quality for video. However, they have limited lenses and accessories to choose from, as well. DSLRs may be bulkier and heavier in size, as well as more expensive than mirrorless cameras, but they have the advantage of providing a variety of lenses and an optical viewfinder that performs better in low light.