Updated October 12, 2019 by Daniel Imperiale

The 8 Best Mirrorless Cameras For Beginners

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Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive

This wiki has been updated 14 times since it was first published in January of 2019. Shooting high-quality images used to require bulky DSLR cameras, but with the advent of mirrorless systems, professional-grade photos and videos have never been more accessible. Whether you're an amateur who has never shot in manual mode before or a film expert transitioning to digital, this list offers a number of easy-to-use, lightweight models with a range of features, designs, and prices. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki. Skip to the best mirrorless camera for beginners on Amazon.

8. Olympus Pen E-PL9

7. Fujifilm X-A7

6. Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX85

5. Sony Alpha a6400

4. Fujifilm X-T30

3. Canon EOS RP

2. Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mk III

1. Nikon Z6

Editor's Notes

October 08, 2019:

There are a few important things to consider when evaluating what makes a camera good for beginners. To put this in context, when I started taking pictures, I bought a camera that was one level above the entry level DSLR offered by Nikon at the time, and even with a slightly nicer model, I regretted not making a slightly smarter investment. Before I knew it, I'd grown out of that body, and needed to upgrade.

In some camera lineups like the Olympus and Panasonic micro four thirds systems, the same lenses you use on their entry level cameras will take you all the way through to their top tier bodies. Nikon and Canon, however, still have mirrorless models on the market that use different lens mounts at the high end and low end, and our old ranking included the lesser of those models from each company. From an initial cost perspective, this makes sense, as these cameras are generally less expensive, but we decided to replace them with newer, pricier models by either company, so as to protect beginners from getting hemmed in with an inferior collection of lenses and smaller sensors. These new bodies from Nikon and Canon — the Z6 and RP respectively — earn top spots on our list for their ability to perform to a professional standard, but they're also both capable of being a smart investment for the beginner who knows they're planning on learning and growing into their camera.

The Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mk III sneaks into that top three for a variety of features, not least of all its small stature and great available lenses. This is a model I actually bought my sister and her husband for their recent honeymoon, and they made great use of its still and video capabilities.

January 18, 2019:

Found that Fujifilm, Panasonic, Sony, and Olympus are the brands which are really staying abreast of the mirrorless revolution and regularly releasing budget and user friendly products. Noted that beginner photographers seem to want affordable options first and foremost. User reports on the Yi M1 were lukewarm, but decided to include it as a low-budget option.

Daniel Imperiale
Last updated on October 12, 2019 by Daniel Imperiale

Daniel Imperiale holds a bachelor’s degree in writing, and proudly fled his graduate program in poetry to pursue a quiet life at a remote Alaskan fishery. After returning to the contiguous states, he took up a position as an editor and photographer of the prestigious geek culture magazine “Unwinnable” before turning his attention to the field of health and wellness. In recent years, he has worked extensively in film and music production, making him something of a know-it-all when it comes to camera equipment, musical instruments, recording devices, and other audio-visual hardware. Daniel’s recent obsessions include horology (making him a pro when it comes to all things timekeeping) and Uranium mining and enrichment (which hasn’t proven useful just yet).

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