DSLR (digital single lens reflex) cameras are no longer only for professionals. The drop in price for DSLR cameras has meant that more people can afford to buy them. Even semi-professionals, hobbyists, and novice photographers are able to justify the cost.

An increasing number of shoppers are searching for a DSLR camera that fits their needs. Luckily, there is a wide variety of options by a slew of manufacturers.

The Best Entry Level DSLR Camera – Nikon D3500

Selecting the best entry level DSLR camera is subjective. But, there are considerations which will help narrow down the choices. Our recommendation for an entry level DSLR is the Nikon D3500. It is available as a body only (if you already have suitable lenses) or as a kit. The kits usually come with one lens, but we recommend getting the two lens kit. Having two lenses will allow for a wider selection of focal lengths. It will also be cheaper than buying the lenses separately. Do keep in mind that camera kits usually do not offer the top quality lenses. They are, however, capable enough for a novice photographer.
The Nikon D3500 Specification Highlights:

  • 24.2 Megapixel CMOS sensor
  • Lightweight construction
  • 11 point autofocus system
  • 1080p video capture capability
  • ISO range: 100 to 25,600
  • Maximum image size: 6,000 x 4,000 pixels
  • 5 fps burst shooting
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Weight: 415 grams (body only, with battery)
  • Beginner-friendly controls


  • No 4k video capabilities
  • No wifi connectivity

The Nikon D3500 is a great choice for novice (and even experienced) photographers. For the price, it offers great capabilities, and reliability one has come to expect from Nikon.

Nikon D3500 W/ AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR Black
  • A DSLR That's as easy to use as a point and shoot camera
  • Compact, comfortable design that's great for travel and special events
  • Image sensor that's 15x larger than those used in typical smartphones for sharper, clearer pictures
  • Works with Nikon’s snap bridge app for sharing photos with a compatible smartphone or tablet
  • 1080p full hd videos with monaural sound at the touch of a button. Bluetooth version 4.1

The Best Hobbyist DSLR Camera – Canon EOS 80D

Hobbyist cameras are not too different from consumer (or entry level) cameras. They offer greater capabilities and better images (usually). Those interested in taking more than just birthday pictures, should consider moving up to a hobbyist level DLSR camera.

The Canon EOS 80D is a great option for those that want to step outside consumer-grade photography.

The Canon EOS 80D Specification Highlights:

  • 24 Megapixel CMOS sensor
  • 45-point autofocus system
  • 1080p video capture capability
  • 7 fps burst shooting
  • Wifi connectivity
  • Maximum image size: 6,000 x 4,000 pixels
  • ISO range: 100 to 25,600
  • Weight: 730 grams (body only, with battery)
  • Built-in flash


  • No 4K video capability
  • Price could be more competitive
Canon Digital SLR Camera Body [EOS 80D] with 24.2 Megapixel (APS-C) CMOS Sensor and Dual Pixel CMOS...
  • The EOS 80D camera’s Intelligent Viewfinder helps bring the thrill of SLR photography with each use
  • The Intelligent Viewfinder displays AF points and AF mode, has a grid display, a horizontal electronic level, plus numerous other points of information
  • For next level AF operation, the EOS 80D camera has a wide area, 45 point, all cross type AF system with low luminance performance to EV 3 and 4 types of AF area selection modes
  • The 242 Megapixel (APS C) CMOS sensor captures high resolution images and has refined individual pixels that enable high ISO speeds (16000 for still photographs, 12800 for movies)
  • Use the EOS Utility Webcam Beta Software (Mac and Windows) to turn your compatible Canon camera into a high-quality webcam

The Best Semi-Professional DLSR Camera – Canon EOS 6D Mark II

The Canon EOS 6D Mark II is the successor to the original semi-professional DSLR from canon. The 6D Mark II offers great improvements over its predecessor. This iteration of the 6D provides capabilities which approach that of a professional-level DSLR. And the price is about half of that of something like the Canon 5D Mark IV (discussed below).

The Canon EOS 6D Mark II Specification Highlights:

  • 26 Megapixel CMOS sensor
  • 45-point autofocus system
  • 1080p video capture capability
  • Wifi connectivity
  • 6.5 fps burst mode
  • Maximum image size: 6240 x 3504 pixels
  • ISO range: 100-40,000
  • Maximum shutter speed: 1/4,000
  • Integrated GPS


  • No 4K video capability
  • No built-in flash
  • No USB 3.0 connection
Canon EOS 6D Mark II Digital SLR Camera Body – Wi-Fi Enabled
  • 26.2 Megapixel Full frame CMOS Sensor
  • Optical Viewfinder with a 45 point All Cross type AF System. Compatible Lenses: Canon EF lenses (excluding EF S and EF M lenses)
  • Dual Pixel CMOS AF with Phase detection & Full HD 60p
  • DIGIC 7 Image Processor, ISO 100 40000. GPS, Wi Fi, NFC and Bluetooth low energy
  • Vary angle Touch Screen, 3.0 inch LCD

The Best Professional DLSR Camera – Canon 5D Mark IV & Nikon D850

It’s a tie! There are endless discussions about which is better, Canon or Nikon. That is a silly discussion at best. Canon & Nikon are two of the top brands in the world of photography, and both produce high quality photographic equipment. At the most basic level, which is the best camera for you may depend on your current set of equipment. Do you have a bunch of Canon lenses? Then Canon is the one for you. Do you have a bunch of Nikon lenses? Then Nikon is the right camera for you. If you are starting from scratch (with no professional level gear) then either option can provide a very high quality photography experience for you.

There are of course other very high-end DSLR cameras but the Canon 5D Mark IV & Nikon D850 represent the most value in the market.

Canon 5D Mark IV & Nikon D850 Comparison

Canon 5D Mark IVNikon d850
Sensor30.4 Megapixel CMOS Sensor45.7 Megapixel CMOS Sensor
Video Capture4K Video4K Video
Burst7 fps~9 fps
ISO Range100-32,00064-25,600
Shutter Speed1/8,000 second1/8,000 seconds
Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Full Frame Digital SLR Camera Body
  • New 30.4 Megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor for versatile shooting in nearly any light, with ISO range 100-32000; expandable up to 50-102400 (equivalent ISO).
  • 4K Motion JPEG video (DCI cinema-type 4096 x 2160) at 30p or 24p; in- camera still frame grab of 4K 8.8-Megapixel images; multiple video options include Full HD up to 60p, and HD up to 120p.
  • Superb Dual Pixel CMOS AF for responsive and smooth AF during video or Live View shooting; LCD monitor has full touch-screen interface, including selection of AF area.
  • Excellent performance - up tp 7.0 fps continuous shooting speed with high-performance DIGIC 6+ Image Processor for improved speed and excellent image quality.
  • Use the EOS Utility Webcam Beta Software (Mac and Windows) to turn your Canon camera into a high-quality webcam, or do the same using a clean HDMI output.
Nikon D850 FX-format Digital SLR Camera Body
  • Nikon designed back side illuminated (BSI) full frame image sensor with no optical low pass filter
  • 45.7 megapixels of extraordinary resolution, outstanding dynamic range and virtually no risk of moiré
  • Up to 9 fps1 continuous shooting at full resolution with full AF performance
  • 8k6 and 4k time lapse movies with new levels of sharpness and detail; file system : DCF 2.0, exif 2.31, Pict bridge
  • Tilting touchscreen, focus shift shooting mode, outstanding battery performance and much more; total pixels: 46.89 million

Last update on 2020-07-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API