Camera & Photo

The 10 Best Mirrorless Cameras Under $1000

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MuchNeeded
5 January, 2022 • Updated 18 days ago
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Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to spend thousands to get a good mirrorless camera. To help you find the best mirrorless cameras under $1,000, we searched the internet and assessed company websites, Reddit, and Amazon reviews attentively.

After careful evaluation of the options on the market right now, we have narrowed down the list to only the 10 best mirrorless cameras below. We are certain one of these top-notch choices will be perfect for your use case and kind to your wallet.

But don’t rush to Amazon just yet; first check out the things you need to consider when deciding on the necessary mirrorless camera specifications for your needs.

IN A HURRY? CHECK OUT OUR EDITOR’S CHOICE
Canon EOS M6 Mark II

Things to Consider

Buying a mirrorless camera can be challenging, considering the wide variety of options on the market. It is crucial to make an educated decision to avoid dropping a lot of money on a device that doesn’t do exactly what you need.

A good mirrorless camera will allow you to capture special moments in the form of high-quality photos and videos. Using a suitable autofocus function and sensor size can ensure you’re prepared for whatever your shooting set may throw at you. It may also be handy to have a camera that fits in your hand – it may just be your travel companion for years to come!

Before purchasing your mirrorless camera, consider your particular use case and what might be important features to meet your needs. Are you a professional photographer or a casual hobbyist? Do you specialize in portraits, scenery photographs, or videos? Our short list below will guide you through the specifications you need to look for when shopping for your new camera.

1. Resolution

Resolution is measured in megapixels and relates to the image quality a camera is able to produce. Nowadays, the resolution of most mirrorless cameras is comparable to that of traditional cameras like DSLRs.

If you are a professional hoping to take your content to the next level, we’d suggest looking for a camera with a minimum of 20 megapixels, while 12 megapixels will be sufficient for amateurs and hobbyists.

2. FPS Options

Frames per second (FPS) determines the number of photos a camera can capture per second. Generally speaking, 5 – 7fps is the minimum FPS option to snap pictures, while higher frame rates are needed to capture quality videos. While the most common frame rates for video cameras are 24, 30, and 60 fps, the minimum FPS required to prevent jerky motion is 30fps.

FPS options are crucial for photographers who want to shoot fast-moving objects, like sports and wildlife photographers. Higher frame rates are most beneficial for professionals hoping to use their mirrorless cameras for videography, but it can also be ideal for ensuring you capture the perfect photo by taking several images at a time. Increased frame rates is just one of the benefits mirrorless cameras have over DSLRs, as it allows for great photography and videography potential, all in one small camera.

3. Sensor Size

The biggest appeal of mirrorless cameras is their decreased size and weight compared to cameras like DSLRs. This benefit is possible thanks to their smaller sensors but this has its downsides too. Larger sensors function better in lower light and produce less image noise when taking photos with higher ISO sensitivities.

Consider full-frame mirrorless cameras or one with an APS-C-sized sensor if you anticipate photography projects in situations with limited lighting. On the other hand, if you wish to experience all the benefits of mirrorless cameras to full capacity you would prefer a micro four-thirds camera at the cost of dim light photo shoots.

4. Autofocus

Autofocus (AF) is the system that can adjust camera focus automatically. Most cameras have various autofocus modes to aid in focusing under different circumstances. The standard options for autofocus modes are AF-S(single-point), AF-C(continuous), and AF-A(automatic).

Autofocus point is what your camera usess to direct focus. You’ll only need 1 AF point to make your camera focus, however, more focus points are beneficial for increased focusing efficiency.

To enhance the mirrorless camera, manufacturers have started using hybrid focusing. Photographers who value fast focus even in dim lighting could consider getting a mirrorless camera with a hybrid autofocus system.

5. Image Stabilization

Most manufacturers add image stabilization technologies to their mirrorless cameras to eliminate blurry images. It also helps the camera’s autofocus system by cutting down vibrations and preserving the sharpness of objects. As a result, it can deliver steadier videos and sharper photos even if you move or are working in dim lighting.

6. Ergonomics

In general, a mirrorless camera is lighter in weight and smaller in size compared to other camera types like a DSLR. Still, it is vital to know the weight and whether the camera fits well in your hand. A decent grip allows for better and more comfortable experiences during long shoots.

For this very reason, some might prefer to hold and feel the mirrorless camera in person before purchasing, but you can also make an educated decision from the website reviews and product features. From these, you will know the camera size and grip, as well as the distance between key buttons.

QUICK OVERVIEW

The Best Mirrorless Cameras


Products Features
EDITOR’S PICK
Canon EOS M6 Mark II
Canon EOS M6 Mark IICanon EOS M6 Mark II
  • Dual Pixel CMOS autofocus
  • 4K UHD 30P video
  • PRICE RANGE: Under $900
  • Dual Pixel CMOS autofocus
  • 4K UHD 30P video
  • PRICE RANGE: Under $900
Check price
at Amazon
MOST REVIEWED
Canon EOS M50
Canon EOS M50Canon EOS M50
  • Dual Pixel CMOS autofocus
  • High-resolution electronic viewfinder
  • PRICE RANGE: Under $900
  • Dual Pixel CMOS autofocus
  • High-resolution electronic viewfinder
  • PRICE RANGE: Under $900
Check price
at Amazon
TOP PICK
Fujifilm X-S10
Fujifilm X-S10Fujifilm X-S10
  • 5-Axis In-Body Image Stabilization (IBIS)
  • 425-Point hybrid autofocus
  • PRICE RANGE: Under $1000
  • 5-Axis In-Body Image Stabilization (IBIS)
  • 425-Point hybrid autofocus
  • PRICE RANGE: Under $1000
Check price
at Amazon
BUDGET PICK
Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV
Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IVOlympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV
  • 20MP four-thirds CMOS sensor
  • 5-Axis In-Body Image Stabilization (IBIS)
  • PRICE RANGE: Under $700
  • 20MP four-thirds CMOS sensor
  • 5-Axis In-Body Image Stabilization (IBIS)
  • PRICE RANGE: Under $700
Check price
at Amazon
BUDGET PICK
Sony Alpha ZV-E10
Sony Alpha ZV-E10Sony Alpha ZV-E10
  • 24.2MP CMOS sensor
  • Has 425-point fast hybrid autofocus
  • PRICE RANGE: Under $900
  • 24.2MP CMOS sensor
  • Has 425-point fast hybrid autofocus
  • PRICE RANGE: Under $900
Check price
at Amazon

Under $700

Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV

Features

  • 8.7fps continuous shooting speed
  • 20 megapixel four-thirds CMOS sensor
  • 5-Axis In-Body Image Stabilization (IBIS) capable of 4.5 shutter speed steps of compensation
  • Background connection through Bluetooth & OI Share Smartphone app

Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV is an entry-level mirrorless camera with an 8.7fps continuous shooting speed and a frame rate of 120fps for video production. This paired with the 20 megapixel four-thirds CMOS sensor and a video shooting quality of 1080p ensures that this compact camera packs a punch. E-M10 Mark IV can easily capture fast-moving objects and split-second moments with fantastic clarity, which is why it is a good mirrorless camera for travelers.

The 5-Axis In-Body Image Stabilization (IBIS) promises sharp, clear, and bright photos even when in motion. If you’re a blogger, you’ll also enjoy the ability to quickly transfer your images and videos to other devices via Wi-fi, Bluetooth, and Olympus Image Share App.

This camera is made for photographers who want a decent interchangeable-lens camera with a professional design. Many favor it for its ease of use despite its impressive arsenal of control options. The drawback is that it is not weather-sealed, meaning that outdoor photographers will need a waterproof camera bag to enjoy the benefits of this budget-friendly device.

Pros
  • Good image stabilization
  • Convenient USB charging
  • Customizable and simple controls
  • HD video shooting
Cons
  • Selfie sticks or tripods interfere with the screen on “selfie mode”
  • Cannot be used when the battery is charging
  • Not weather sealed

Panasonic LUMIX GH4

Features

  • Durable magnesium alloy body
  • Exceptional shutter life
  • High speed 49 area autofocusing for photos and videos
  • 4K 24p cinematic video (4096 x 2160), plus 4K 3840 x 2160 30p/24p

Panasonic LUMIX GH4 is one of the best-selling, and most reliable mirrorless cameras Panasonic has to offer. It features a fast shutter speed for continuous shooting at 12fps and has an improved autofocus system. It also boasts remarkable durability due to its extended shutter life.

The Lumix GH4 is targeted at photojournalists, reporters, and documentary makers. It is lightweight, compact, and has a discreet design made of a weather-sealed magnesium alloy. The camera is also handy for event photographers with its high ISO settings and fast autofocus.

This mirrorless camera offers superior video quality and is suggested for numerous videography purposes. However, if photography is your main use case with a mirrorless camera, we’d suggest one of the other options on this list.

Pros
  • Great for videography
  • Dust and splash resistant
  • Built-in time lapse
  • Long battery life
Cons
  • Noise is clear during low light
  • Low image quality
  • No stabilization

Panasonic LUMIX G85

Features

  • 16 megapixel four-thirds CMOS sensor
  • 2,360k dot electronic viewfinder
  • 5-Axis In-Body Image Stabilization (IBIS)
  • 4K (UHD) 3840 x 2160 video resolution

The advanced Panasonic Lumix G85 is among the top 50% of all mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras. It has a 16 megapixel micro four-thirds CMOS sensor for a near 10% boost in fine detail resolving power. Lumix G85 is designed for photo and video enthusiasts, but probably isn’t the best for someone hoping t do professional photography.

This camera features an integrated 2,360k dot electronic live viewfinder (LVF) and 3” articulated flip LCD to assist awkward shooting angles. The 5-Axis In-Body image stabilization (IBIS) delivers both sharper images and clearer videos. The combination of its durable magnesium-alloy body, IBIS, and 16megapixel sensor make it attractive for outdoor photographers.

It also offers 4K video capturing and a post focus feature to help record full HD videos. The cherry on top is the additional battery grip which allows you to store an extra battery for extended shooting. It also serves as an optional grip to make camera handling more comfortable, even at a vertical angle.

Pros
  • High quality video recording
  • Robust image stabilization for stills and videos
  • Full swivel LCD screen
Cons
  • Humming noise from IBIS
  • Noisy images at higher ISO (6,400 & above)
  • Slight crop in 4K video recording

Under $900

Canon EOS M50

Features

  • Dual Pixel CMOS Autofocus
  • 24.1 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor
  • DIGIC 8 image processor
  • High-resolution electronic viewfinder of approximately 2,360k dots

Canon promotes the stylish Canon EOS M50 as an “intuitive entry-level camera” that is designed to perfectly complement all your existing smart devices. It features a Dual Pixel CMOS Autofocus and almost three times the average number of AF points for fast and accurate autofocus functionality. This camera also allows for advanced subject tracking and eye detection autofocus.

The DIGIC 8 Image Processor and 24.1 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor enable detailed and vivid images under any lighting circumstances, while also delivering an impressive dynamic range. It is a good camera for entry-level photographers due to its high-end features and affordable price. However, it is too small and lightweight to handle the type of heavy, long-zoom lenses that might be preferred by professionals such as sports photographers.

This model comes with an electronic viewfinder that features approximately 2,360k dots for high-resolution photos and videos up to 4K UHD * 24P. The EVF gives M50 an advantage over the other models in the series. The vari-angle Touchscreen LCD also offers a flexible tilt range for high and low angle shooting, besides being useful for photo reviewing.

Pros
  • Affordable as an entry-level camera
  • High-definition photos
  • Easy to use
  • Eye-detection Autofocus
Cons
  • Has a high 2.56 crop in 4K mode
  • Less smooth contrast-detect for 4K mode

Sony Alpha ZV-E10

Features

  • Large 24.2megapixel APS-C Exmor CMOS sensor
  • 4K video oversampled from 6k
  • 425-point fast hybrid autofocus
  • Features product showcase setting, Bokeh switch, still/ movie button

Sony Alpha ZV-E10 is designed especially for creative vloggers who seek unique aesthetics in their production. It comes with a simple background defocus feature to turn background blurring (Bokeh) on and off. There is also a 425-point fast hybrid autofocus for better focusing.

The impressive images of the ZV-E10 are a result of its large 24.2 megapixel APS-C Exmor image sensor. This allows for professional-looking and beautifully detailed photos, which is why vloggers are drawn to this model. It also captures crisp 4K video and oversamples around 6K.

This camera is built for simple selfies and vlog shoots. It has a vari-angle LCD screen with a side opening for better selfies and frame checking, no matter your shooting angle. This model also allows for flexible connectivity for fast sharing by using a USB Type-C cable.

Pros
  • Good image quality
  • Webcam and USB streaming feature
  • Clear image zoom
Cons
  • Low screen quality
  • Bad rolling shutter
  • No sensor stabilization

Olympus OM-D E-M5

Features

  • 20 megapixel four-thirds CMOS sensor
  • 30fps continuous shooting
  • 4K (DCI) – 4096 x 2160 video resolution
  • High-speed video production

This advanced mirrorless camera was launched by Olympus in 2019, only 10 months earlier than the Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV we mentioned above. It has the same 20 megapixel four-thirds MOS sensor for high image clarity. The drawback is that some controls are relatively close to the viewfinder, possibly causing issues for users who wear glasses.

Both Olympus OM-E versions mentioned have a silent mode and 5-Axis Image Stabilization. However, Olympus OM-D E-M5 improves on the E-M10 Mark IV by featuring 30fps for faster sequential shootings, making it highly applicable for event photography. It also has a fully articulated LCD screen instead of a tilting screen for better monitoring.

The improvements don’t end there; this camera comes with a better 4K video resolution of 4096 x 2160 and high-speed video shooting. It even includes focus stacking for maximum field depth, a webcam function, and an anti-flicker function to reduce exposure and uneven coloring under the flickering light.

Pros
  • High-resolution images and videos
  • Focus stacking function
  • Excellent image stabilization
  • Customizable menu
Cons
  • Smaller magnification in the viewfinder
  • Slow autofocus

Canon EOS M6 Mark II

Features

  • 32.5megapixel CMOS (APS-C) sensor
  • 14fps high-speed continuous shooting
  • Has a 4K UHD 30P / Full HD 129P video
  • Dual Pixel CMOS AF with 5,481 manually selectable AF positions

Canon’s EOS M6 Mark II is a high-end mirrorless camera, despite its relatively modest price. The 32.5megapixel CMOS (APS-C) sensor is the most advanced on the list and promises incomparable image quality.

Featuring a 14fps shooting speed, the M6 Mark II allows for high-speed continuous shooting. The dual-pixel CMOS autofocus proves excellent by providing 5,481 manually selectable autofocus positions to help meticulously focus on your subject.

This camera has a 4K UHD 30P or full HD 129P video. It also has an electronic viewfinder with approximately 100% coverage and a 2,360k dots resolution to achieve intricate and cinema-like videos. The pros of the M6 Mark II are the live-view centric design and the compact nature.

However, the compact body also means a smaller handgrip and might lead to some restrictions on functionality.

Pros
  • Excellent photography due to 32.5 megapixel camera and 4K video recording up to 30fps
  • Fast and accurate autofocus performance
  • Shooting speed up to 14fps
  • Decent handling
Cons
  • Tends to overheat during video shooting
  • Not weather-sealed

Under $1000

Sony a6400

Features

  • 24.2 megapixel Exmor CMOS sensor
  • Up to 11fps continuous shooting
  • Fast 0.02 second autofocus
  • Make time-lapse movies or slow/quick motion videos without post-processing

Despite its lightweight and compact size, the Sony a6400 is a sturdy camera for still shots, movies, creative compositions, and selfies. As compared to its predecessor, Sony has upgraded the hybrid AF system for a6400. However, the drawback is that it lacks in-body image stabilization (IBIS), and it has limited touch controls, which might bother some photographers.

This Sony mirrorless camera has a fast 0.02 second autofocus speed and up to 11fps continuous shooting. The features allow reliable and speedy autofocus and give you real-time tracking to take outstanding images and videos. It also features a 24.2 megapixel Exmor CMOS sensor with excellent light sensitivity for pro-level photos.

The Sony a6400 comes with advanced functions to take your movie-making creativity to the next level. It is handy to create vlogs and time-lapse movies with its external microphone jack and optional XLR adaptor. You can even record 4K movies in slow or fast motion without post-processing.

Pros
  • High resolution images and 4K video quality
  • Excellent autofocus system
  • Convenient USB charging
  • Customizable menu
Cons
  • Short battery life
  • Low color sensitivity
  • Lack of image stabilizer

Fujifilm X-S10

Features

  • X-Processor 4 image processor
  • 5-Axis In-Body Image Stabilization (IBIS)
  • 425-Point hybrid autofocus system
  • 8fps continuous shooting speed

Fujifilm X-S10 is a compact mirrorless camera with advanced technologies to elevate every photographer’s creativity. It features a 26.1 megapixel CMOS 4 sensor and quad-core X- processor 4 CPU to deliver uniquely lifelike photos, impressively quick autofocus, and improved image quality in low lighting. Fujifilm launched the X-S10 to target both beginners and experienced users who are looking for easy-to-use cameras.

With the 5-Axis In-Body Image Stabilization (IBIS) system, this camera produces sharp images and steady videos regardless of situation. The 180° vari-angle LCD touchscreen helps to cover even the most awkward and difficult angles. This camera also offers great promise in the video department with 4K video resolution.

The X-S10 has precise autofocus with its 425-point hybrid autofocus system with focusing speeds of up to 0.02 seconds. It also combines the 8fps continuous shooting speed and a deep grip for sheer security during sequential shootings. X-S10 is one of the best mirrorless cameras under $1,000, and it is an ideal choice for vloggers to shoot high-quality stills.

Pros
  • Excellent image stabilization
  • Good autofocus
  • Sharp images and 4K videos
  • Strong grip
Cons
  • Unable to transfer pictures with USB cables
  • Shorter battery life
  • Small flash and lens hood

Panasonic LUMIX G9

Features

  • 20 megapixel four-third CMOS sensor
  • 3,680k dot electronic viewfinder
  • 20fps continuous shooting
  • 4K (UHD) 3840 x 2160 video resolution

Panasonic introduced the Lumix G9 in 2017, 14 months after the aforementioned Lumix G85. Lumix G9 is a professional mirrorless camera with a 20 megapixel four-third CMOS sensor to deliver professional photo and video performance. The 3,680k dot OLED live viewfinder (LVF) provides super high-resolution and improved visibility for perfect framing.

This is the only Panasonic camera that features sensor-shift stabilization to capture eight frames and combine them into a large 80 megapixel file, which is a technique that originated from Olympus in the E-M5 Mark II. The impressive frame rate of 20fps allows for faster continuous shooting. Not to be forgotten is the 5-Axis Dual Image Stabilization to eliminate lens shake issues in both images and 4K video recordings.

This camera is great for taking selfie shots and videos, thanks to the fully articulating screens and 4K video resolution of 3840 x 2160. Videographers and vloggers appreciate its flexibility and front-facing screen for their use-case. It is also famous for landscape and architectural photographers, as well as capturing food, products, and still images.

Pros
  • Good autofocus system
  • Excellent image stabilization
  • Marvelous ergonomics
  • Great design of button layouts
Cons
  • Noisy images at higher ISO (6,400 & above)
  • Shorter battery life

Conclusion

The mirrorless camera is a game-changer in camera technology for photographers, be it amateurs or professionals. More and more enthusiasts are opting for the lighter and more compact mirrorless camera with all the cutting-edge technologies of traditional options.

The Canon EOS M6 Mark II becomes our Editor’s Pick for producing high-quality images and cinema-like 4K videos, thanks to its accurate autofocus performance. Alternatively, you can look at Fujifilm X-S10 as our Top Pick or Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV and Sony Alpha ZV-E10 as the budget options.

Studying product specifications and reviews before purchasing is vital to getting the right camera for your use case. We hope our list of the top 10 mirrorless cameras under $1000 has narrowed down your search to only the best options for you.

If you find this article useful, share it with your fellow photography enthusiasts to help them step up their camera game!

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