Today, you see hundreds of cameras on the market but no two are the same. They come in various sizes, shapes, styles, and feature sets. Each camera is designed to meet the specific needs of the user, like a Polaroid camera or a camera that automatically sends your captured shots to your computer. You’ll also find specifically designed cameras for low light photography.
Photography is fun but for how expensive cameras are, they can sometimes be difficult to buy. A professional photographer always makes sure their money is well spent. When looking for a camera for low light conditions, how can you be sure that it’s worth the investment? In the list below, we take a look at some of the best low light cameras you can find.
The Canon 5D Mark III is one of the best DSLR cameras for low light photography. It’s the company’s response to photographers looking for the perfect shot in near darkness. While it doesn’t offer a large ISO range like some other cameras, it still does the job exceptionally well. You wouldn’t want to stretch the ISO settings to maximum, as it will introduce noise in the images.
The Mark III is a full-frame camera and captures the photos of dimly-lit scenes like no other. It is capable of shooting a moving object at the rate of 6fps, which is quite reasonable compared to other cameras in the same category.
2. Sony a6300
The Sony a6300 is a mirrorless camera with a crop sensor that goes up against all others on the market. It’s one of the most budget-friendly cameras for low light photography. It produces the best low-noise photos if the ISO setting is in the mid-to-high range, but it can be raised up to 51,200 if needed. This ISO flexibility coupled with the powerful sensors from Sony delivers amazing results in low-light conditions.
Due to the excellent autofocusing system, the a6300 can focus on an object in just 0.05 seconds. With an incredible 425 phase detection AF points, this camera has the capability of taking high-speed photos at up to 11fps.
3. Nikon D5
Nikon has pushed the limits of photography with the launch of their high-end full-frame low-light camera, the Nikon D5. This camera offers an extensive ISO range that, for the first time ever, can go up to 3,280,000. Although it won’t give you crisp, polished images at maximum ISO, it still allows you ample room to tinker with the settings.
The D5 is an amazing camera for low light shooting with improved autofocus, metering, and image processing. It can shoot at a rate of 12fps making it an ideal camera to take photos of objects in motion.
The Canon 7D is the first camera on our list that isn’t a full-frame camera. While it won’t be able to capture as much light with its 20-megapixel APS-C sensor, it costs and weighs much less than the aforementioned full-frame options.
The ISO range of this DSLR can be pushed up to 51,200. If the settings are just right, this significant ISO along with the medium-sized sensors make low-light photography much easier and the results can be impressive even in dimly-lit scenes. The Canon 7D is capable of shooting at a speed of 10fps.
5. Sony a7S II
The Sony a7S II full-frame camera may not have the same heft as the other full-frame cameras, but it proves to be efficient at capturing light in the darkest of areas. You can stretch its ISO up to 409,600. Going up this high delivers noisy results, but in some conditions, that might end up well for you.
The a7S II features a 12.2-megapixel sensor for low-light shooting. It takes impeccable photos with a great amount of detail in low-light conditions. For fast and precise focus, it has 169 AF points.
The Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II has a solid black magnesium-alloy body. The camera is weather sealed and packs some impressive goodies like five-axis image stabilization, which makes it one of the best mirrorless cameras. The five-axis stabilization feature along with its extremely smooth voice coil motor system establishes a desired standard of quality for all other low-light mirrorless cameras.
You don’t need to use a tripod with this camera to capture sharp images and smooth video. It can take photos at a speed of 10fps which makes it an ideal camera for shooting fast-moving objects.
Considering its weight, size, and price, the Olympus E-M5 Mark II can be an excellent choice for intermediate-level photographers who need a moderately-priced camera for low light photography.
Fujifilm has been able to design an impressive camera for professional photographers who want to brush up their low-light photography skills. Its latest engine upgrade focuses faster and delivers quality images with less noise. The number of sealing points for this camera is 63 to achieve a high level of resistance to dust and moisture.
The X-T2 doesn’t need a high ISO setting as it features a large 24.3-megapixel APS-C sensor which can capture a lot of light. It shoots sharp images at a speed of up to 6fps. The autofocus on the camera takes only 0.06 seconds to focus on an object. This feels quite exceptional.
Choosing the Best Cameras for Low Light Photography
Even though capturing stills and videos in low light conditions presents many challenges, it also offers you a great opportunity to excel as well. In our list above, we have reviewed some of the best and budget-friendly cameras for low light photography ideal for intermediate to advanced users to help you make your choice. Make sure to grab the camera that best meets your unique requirements.