Some of the best cameras you can get right now are still the best DSLRs. Mirrorless cameras may be the new technology’s headline-grabbing ambassadors, but manufacturers are still ensuring that their DSLR offerings are up-to-date, integrating many mirrorless features into their current DSLRs, such as on-sensor phase-detection autofocus.
And if you take into account the many benefits that DSLRs still have such as their optical viewfinders and wide, ergonomic handgrips, then a good DSLR is indeed beginning to look like a very enticing prospect. Ruggedly constructed and reassuringly electronic, some of the finest workhorse cameras out there are still DSLRs. They’re going to work and continue working. The Canon Rebel SL3 (EOS 250D), Canon EOS 90D and Nikon D780. are prime examples of newer DSLRs that make an excellent case for themselves.
And to get something perfect, you don’t have to go for a new camera. There may not be cutting-edge Live View autofocus for older and simpler DSLRs, they still have many of the great physical qualities for which DSLRs are popular. For their size, their weight and their handling, many photographers prefer them, and older DSLRs would be much more affordable than newer versions.
A starter-level DSLR is also the cheapest way to get a camera with interchangeable lenses and a viewfinder if you’re a beginner photographer! Many of them would also have helpful instruction modes to help new users get to grips with the controls and different settings for picture-taking.
So, which DSLR is the right one to get? That depends on a variety of variables, including your budget, your experience of shooting and the kind of subjects you want to photograph! You’ll probably be looking for a low-cost camera that’s easy to use if you’re a novice, while seasoned photo enthusiasts would want a strong all-round camera that offers a lot of pro camera features at a more affordable price. In the meantime, skilled photographers would want image quality and characteristics as a given, but also longevity and reliability.
That’s why our list of the best DSLRs has been split into versions for beginners, enthusiasts and pros, so you can navigate to the right section for you. While we have left out the Canon EOS-1D X Mark III and Nikon D6, we have included a wide range of models from all major DSLR manufacturers, because these are seriously costly and specialised cameras for pro sports photographers. Take a look at our guide to the best cameras for professionals if that’s the type of thing you’re looking for.
The best DSLR in 2020 for beginners:
We’ve chosen our favourite entry-level DSLRs here. We agree that all of these are the best all-around DSLRs for new users, but for various reasons, we score them all. Some are incredibly cheap, while others have more advanced features, so take a look at them to see which ones seem to suit you best.
1. Nikon D3500
- Type: DSLR | Sensor: APS-C | Megapixels: 24.2MP | Lens mount: Nikon F (DX) | Screen: 3in, 921,000 dots | Max burst speed: 5fps | Max video resolution: 1080p (Full HD) | User level: Beginner
2. Canon EOS Rebel SL3 / EOS 250D
- Type: DSLR | Sensor: APS-C | Megapixels: 24.2MP | Lens mount: Canon EF-S | Screen: 3in vari-angle touchscreen, 1,040,000 dots | Max burst speed: 5fps | Max video resolution: 4K | User level: Beginner
3. Canon EOS 90D
- Type: DSLR | Sensor: APS-C | Megapixels: 32.5MP | Lens mount: Canon EF-S | Screen: 3in vari-angle touchscreen, 1,040,000 dots | Viewfinder: Pentaprism | Max burst speed: 10fps | Max video resolution: 4K UHD | User level: Enthusiast
4. Nikon D7500
- Type: DSLR | Sensor: APS-C | Megapixels: 20.9MP | Lens mount: Nikon DX | Screen: 3.2in tilting touchscreen, 922,000 dots | Viewfinder: Pentaprism | Max burst speed: 8fps | Max video resolution: 4K | User level: Enthusiast
5. Nikon D780
- Type: DSLR | Sensor: Full frame | Megapixels: 24.4MP | Lens mount: Nikon FX | Screen: 3.2in tilting screen, 2,359k dots | Viewfinder: Pentaprism | Max burst speed: 7/12fps | Max video resolution: 4K UHD | User level: Enthusiast/professional
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