DSLR cameras used to be some of the more expensive pieces of photography equipment that only the professional could afford. While today, these cameras are becoming a bit less expensive, they are certainly considered superior compared to point-and-shoot cameras, as well as some of the other options that photographers can opt for. After careful consideration and a lot of research, we present to you the best affordable DSLR cameras under $500.
1. Canon EOS Rebel T6 (Best Overall)
Our top selection for the best affordable DSLR is the Canon EOS Rebel T6. One thing you will note is that this is not actually the latest model from the Canon brand, but it does seem to be the preferred option among hobbyist photographers looking to get their hands on one of the more affordable DSLR cameras.
The Canon EOS Rebel T6 features an 18MP APS-C CMOS camera sensor with 4+ image processing technology. You also get a three-inch LCD display, and the camera is capable of recording video in full HD 1080p resolution.
2. Nikon D3500
Next up is the Nikon D3500, an inexpensive high-quality option. This camera has been developed in such a way to give you the quality of a digital SLR camera, but the ease-of-use that you would usually get from a point-and-shoot camera. The sensor installed in the camera is larger than average, which gives you photographs that appear much clearer. You also have the ability to record videos in 1080p full HD resolution with this camera.
3. Sony a200K
We cannot do a list of the best DSLR cameras without including one from Sony as well. Sony is known for producing some of the world’s best cameras, but these electronics from the brand tend to fetch for quite high prices. The Sony a200K, however, gives you the original Sony experience, at a lower price.
Due to its age, Sony’s a200K might feature a relatively low resolution, but the picture quality is still adequate for most photographers. The lens uses a special CCD technology to ensure that you can print out photos up to 18 x 24 inches in size and still achieve exceptional detail on every print you order.
The camera also features a 2.7-inch LCD display with ClearPhoto technology, ensuring you get a crystal clear view of the scene you are about to capture. The Eye-Start autofocus system allows you to capture the action at just the right moment. The Sony a200K comes with a Super SteadyShot Image Stabilizer, as well as an 18-70mm f/3.5-4.6 kit lens.
4. Pentax K-50
While Pentax may not be the most popular brand when it comes to digital cameras, the brand is known for a number of high-quality options that photographers do seem very satisfied with. The Pentax K-50 is an excellent example of how the brand is able to bring quality affordable DSLR cameras to those running low on cash.
The Pentax K-50 is an inexpensive option and you even get to choose between three great colors when you decide to buy this particular camera. The color options include an all-black option, as well as red and black or white and black options. This 16MP camera utilizes an APS-C CMOS sensor to deliver quality images at the touch of a button.
The K-50 features an ISO speed that can reach as high as 51200. Due to the higher ISO sensitivity featured by the camera, you get much better performance in terms of noise making it a great performer in low light conditions.
Another one from Canon – the EOS Rebel T5. The is an older model of the top choice that we shared and comes at a slightly lower price, making it a great option when looking for affordable DSLR cameras. The Rebel T5 comes with an 18.0MP camera sensor that delivers crystal clear photography in high resolution.
6. Sony a350 (Budget Winner)
When it comes to shopping for a DSLR camera that offers you the best value for your money – that being a camera that comes with top-quality features at a low price – then the Sony a350 is our favorite among affordable DSLR cameras. The a350 comes with a number of original features from the Sony brand that photographers rely on to produce better quality work.
The Sony a350 comes included with a Super SteadyShot Image Stabilization accessory. This is great if you frequently struggle to get your images stabilized and end up with blurry photos that don’t do you any good. The camera features a 14.2MP camera sensor as well as a 2.7-inch LCD display that can be tilted according to your preferences.
The ISO 3200 sensitivity comes with extra noise reduction features to help make your photos clearer and look more professional. The AF response is also quicker than many competitor cameras, ensuring you can capture the action as it happens.
Next up on our list is the Konica Minolta Maxxum 5D, a popular Minolta camera. The Maxxum 5D features the brand’s own Anti-Shake technology, which helps to add an extra level of stabilization to the photographs that you want to capture with the camera. You get a 6.1MP sensor that features CCD capturing technology meaning your images can be printed on canvases up to 14 x 19 inches in size.
The Konica Minolta Maxxum 5D comes with a 2.5-inch LCD display. The display unit gives you a live view on the footage that your camera’s lens is seeing and ensure you know exactly when to hit the shutter, allowing you to capture that perfect moment.
A number of features and settings are built into this camera, giving you full control over how the final photograph will look. Images are stored on an SD card and can be easily opened on any computer that has support for this type of memory card.
8. Nikon D3400
The Nikon D3400 features a 24.2MP DX-Format CMOS Sensor, which is quite impressive considering the fact that you can get your hands on this camera without breaking the bank. The sensor gives you superior image quality whenever you capture a shot. The built-in EXPEED image processing technology also processed every shot you take four times for exceptional details. The D3400 is available in black or red.
The Canon EOS Rebel XTi is another great option to consider if you are looking to get your hands on one of these cameras and you cannot afford to spend too much money. Its low price makes it one of the more affordable DSLR cameras that you are going to find on the market at the moment.
Last up on our list is another option from the Canon brand. The Canon EOS Rebel T7, also known as the 2000D, is one of the latest options from the brand that you can pick up for cheap.
The Canon EOS Rebel T7 DSLR Camera features a 24.1MP camera with a CMOS sensor. This gives you high-resolution imaging capabilities. The built-in WiFi offered by the camera also makes it exceptionally easy to download the shots you have taken and even to share them with friends and colleagues. Combined with one of the best cheap lenses for Canon cameras, this option is definitely a great one for professional photographers.
When Choosing Affordable DSLR Cameras
With the right DSLR camera by your side, it is exceptionally easy to capture the perfect shot in a moment. While these cameras used to be on the higher end of the budget range, it is now possible to get away with a much smaller budget than in the past. We shared the best affordable DSLR cameras under $500 in this post to help you get your hands on one of these cameras, even if you have a low budget.