Finding a great camera that won't break the bank doesn't have to be a challenge if you know where to look. There's some tough competition, but we choose the Canon Rebel T7 as the best camera for under $1,000. It combines great design, solid image quality, and fast performance, making it stand out in the crowd.
Its features and simplicity make it approachable to the beginning and experienced photographers as well. The $600 camera holds true to the Canon name and has everything a beginner could want.
But if Canon isn't your type, nearly every manufacturer has a solid option, from Nikon to Sony.
Looking for a camera for either a side hustle or just to take photos of those special moments doesn't have to make you go shopping in a panic. Here are our top picks for cameras under $1,000.
Canon EOS Rebel T7
- Digital Camera Type: DSLR camera with lens
- Maximum Focal Length: 55 millimeters
- Minimum Focal Length: 18 millimeters
- Effective Pixels: 24. 1 megapixel
- Lens series: Canon EF-S
- Lens 2 series: Canon EF
- Lens 2 Minimum Focal Length: 75 millimeters
- Lens 2 Maximum Focal Length: 300 millimeters
- Image sensor type: CMOS
- Video resolution: Full HD (1080p)
The Canon EOS Rebel T7 can be purchased either with the body alone or as a bundle. We recommend getting the bundle because the bundle includes the body, one smaller lens, and one larger lens. The smaller lens ranges from 18-55 millimeters, while the larger one ranges from 75-300 millimeters. The thing we found to be most helpful is that the bundle has everything you need without having to search for an additional length to get farther-away shots if you are just starting off.
The bundle includes a strap, battery, battery charger, and camera bag. Its sells for about $600 in stores.
Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV
- 20 Megapixel Live MOS sensor (Four Thirds)
- TruePic VIII processor
- 5-axis in-body image stabilization (up to 4.5 stops)
- 121-point contrast-detect AF system
- Flip-down touchscreen display
- Electronic viewfinder
- 4.5 fps burst shooting w/AF
- USB charging
- Wi-Fi + Bluetooth
- 360 shots per charge (with LCD)
The Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV is considered one of the entry-level models in the company's DSLR-style lineup of Micro Four Thirds cameras. With more controls, better build quality, and a broader feature set, it is a step up from the beginner-focused E-PL series. This model also includes a 20MP Four-Thirds sensor, in-body image stabilization, flip-down touchscreen with a simple interface, and a 4K video capture.
The E-M10 IV is available in two kits, in your choice of silver or black: body only with an MSRP of USD 699 and with the very compact 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 EZ lens for an MSRP of USD 799.
- 24MP APS-C sensor
- 425-pt phase-detection AF system with Real-Time Tracking
- Tilting screen, 180° up, 90° down
- 2.36M-dot electronic viewfinder
- New Bionz X processor
- ISO range from 100-32000
- 11fps burst shooting (8fps with silent shutter)
- Interval shooting option added
- 4K/30p video capture
- Mic input, no headphone output
- 410 shots per battery charge (per CIPA)
- Wi-Fi with NFC and Bluetooth
The Sony A6400 is a mirrorless camera with a 24MP interchangeable lens camera with an APS-C sensor. This camera would serve plenty of photographers for taking family photos to pro shooters looking for a lightweight second body. This particular model has a new processor based on that used in Sony's sports-shooting flagship a9, which enabled “real-time tracking' autofocus.
The a6400 replaced the older a6300 and used the same sensors but comes with some subtle enhancements aside from impressive autofocus capabilities. It is retailed for $899 for the body-only, $999 with a 16-50MM F3.5-5.6 Power Zoom kit lens, and $1299 with an 18-135mm F3.5-5.6 zoom.
- 24MP CMOS sensor
- ISO 100-6400 (plus ISO 12,800-equivalent Hi1 setting)
- Expeed 3 processing
- 3.0″, 920k dot screen
- Full HD 1080p30 video (with 25p and 24p options)
- Microphone socket
- Twin IR remote receivers
- 4 frames-per-second continuous shooting
- Guide mode
The Nikon D3200 is a bit of an older model that was released in 2012, but it is still one of our favorites. This camera is still popular, and you may still be able to find a refurbished one if someone is willing to part with theirs. We still have one of our own that is still going strong. What's great about this particular model is its 24 MP CMOS sensor. In addition, it also features Full HD 1080p video capabilities.
The D3200 presents Nikon's entry-level DSLR offering. This camera is equal to Sony's Alpha SLT-A65, A77, and NEX-7, offering the highest pixel count in its time. When the camera first launched, it had a starting price of $699 and also came in a bundle.
- 24 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor
- EXPEED 4 image processor
- ISO range of 100-25600
- 11-point autofocus system through the optical viewfinder
- Shoots continuously at 5 frames per second
- Capable of ‘Full HD' 1080/60p video
- Bluetooth for image transfer
- 921k-dot fixed LCD screen
- Battery rated for 1,550 shots per charge (CIPA)
The D3500 is the next step up from the previous D3200 in the series, but with some updated features.
The cheaper and lighter frame with longer battery life sets the two cameras apart. It was designed with the new photographer in mind. This model also features a Guide Model that will essentially teach you how to shoot in various situations.
The D3500 is available with an MSRP of $499.95 with the AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR, and $849.95 with the 18-55mm and an AF-P DX NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3G ED. It can be found on the Nikon website, along with retailers like Best Buy and Walmart.
Canon EOS Rebel 8Ti
- 24-megapixel APS-C image sensor
- EF or EF-S lens compatibility
- ISO 100 to 25,600, extends to 51,200
- 7 fps continuous shooting, or 7.5 fps in live view
- 45 point, all cross-type phase-detect AF
- 0.51x pentamirror viewfinder with 95% coverage
- 3.0″ vari-angle touchscreen LCD
- 24p 4K video with 1.6x crop, or full-sensor 1080p60
- 800 shot battery life, or 310 shots with live view
With the increasing popularity of mirrorless cameras, only a few manufacturers are left in the consumer DSLR market. Canon, Nikon, and Ricoh (who also makes Pentax-branded DSLRs) remain. Among these, the Rebel series are the biggest sellers. The Rebel 8Ti sits at the top of the line, placing the T7i that came out in 2017.
Priced at $749.99 body-only or $900 with an EF-S 18-55mm IS STM kit lens, the Canon T8i is available.
Many photographers still prefer the DSLRs for this crip, lag-free through-the-lens viewfinders, and a wider array of lenses is available without the need for adapters. In addition, DSLR cameras can be used right out of the box.
- 26MP X-Trans BSI-CMOS sensor
- 5-axis in-body image stabilization
- On-sensor phase detection
- 3″, 1.04M-dot fully articulating touchscreen
- 2.36M-dot OLED electronic viewfinder
- 30 fps burst shooting with crop (up to 20 fps without)
- DCI and UHD 4K capture at up to 30p with F-Log support
- External mic and headphone sockets
- 325 shots per charge using LCD
- USB Power Delivery support
- Single UHS-I card slot
- Wi-Fi + Bluetooth
Fujifilm's X-S10 mirrorless camera is a 26MP interchangeable-lens camera that shoots high-quality 4K video. It also features a more deep grip and a control scheme than most other Fujifilm cameras.
The particular model is a blend of the existing X-T30 and X-T4 in terms of specs. You get the same sensor, processor, and performance as the X-T4, but it also includes EVF resolution and a single, slower SD card slot on par with the X-T30.
This particular camera is geared towards beginning and experienced users who may have Canon or Nikon DSLRs and want something a little more familiar than a typical Fujifilm camera. The camera's body carries a price tag of $999, still making this one of our favorites for under $1,000.
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Featured Image Courtesy of Nicole Zappone.