Are you looking for the perfect travel camera that has incredible image quality and superb functionality, but is lighter and easier to carry compared to a DSLR camera?
Then you should be thinking about investing in a mirrorless camera then.
Why? While most experienced photographers prefer DSLR cameras for its excellent image quality and multiple lens options available, they tend to be extremely bulky to deal with while traveling.
But what makes the mirrorless camera the best camera for travel photography?
There are many reasons why mirrorless cameras are best for travel photography, and in this post I will break the key specifics behind why you should get a mirrorless camera for travel and which mirrorless camera are best for travel based on the budget you have for your next travel camera.
And without further ado, here is my post on why you should travel with a mirrorless camera for your next holiday.
MIRRORLESS CAMERAS – BEST FOR TRAVEL
When you travel, a camera is a travel necessity.
Regardless of whether you are a novice photographer or a professional wildlife photographer, we all want to capture every moment to look back on years later.
I have had a DSLR for years, and they are perfect for the novice travel photographer as they are easy to capture great photos.
But, with me traveling quite a bit over the past few months, I began to notice my DSLR camera was becoming too bulky and heavy for me while I was on the road.
Recently while I was looking into upgrading my travel camera skills, I began looking for a camera that wasn’t bulky like a DSLR.
Plus, I wanted a camera that was relatively inexpensive in terms of costs for the camera.
The budget I had in mind was under $1,000.00 for a great travel camera and below I compare mirrorless cameras that I tested.
Mirrorless Cameras - My Picks
Here is a list of my choices for the best mirrorless cameras under $1,000:
- Panasonic Lumix G7
- Panasonic Lumix G85
- Fujifilm X-T20
- Canon EOS M50
- Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II
- Sony Alpha A6000
Here is a list of my choices for the best mirrorless cameras Over $1,000:
What is a mirrorless digital camera?
The word “mirrorless” indicates that the camera does not have an optical mirror or an optical viewfinder like a conventional digital single-lens reflex camera (DSLR), but an electronic viewfinder which displays what the camera image sensor sees.
In many mirrorless models, the mechanical shutter remains.
What is the advantage of mirrorless cameras?
The great thing about owning a mirrorless camera is that they are lighter, smaller, quicker, and take incredible video footage.
The disadvantage of a mirrorless camera compared to a DSLR is that you have limited options of lenses and accessories compared to a DSLR.
The great thing about DSLRs is the options for lenses available, but it can shoot better in low light due to a better optical viewfinder.
But, DSLR’s are pricer, harder to work, and heavier than the average mirrorless camera.
Mirrorless Camera vs DSLR
Will mirrorless cameras replace DSLR?
If you are unsure what the difference is between a Mirrorless vs DSLR camera, I have you covered.
Mirrorless cameras have an edge over DSLR cameras because of it being lighter, more compact, faster, and better for video.
The only disadvantage is there are fewer lens options and accessories.
As for DSLRs, they take full advantage of the lens selection you can add to the camera, plus has an optical viewfinder that works better in low light.
The disadvantage to a DSLR is they are very complex to learn and bulkier for travel.
Comparison Chart Of Mirrorless Cameras Under 1000 Dollars
What is the best camera to buy for travel photography?
Now that you understand a bit about mirrorless cameras, and the advantages they have when it comes to photography, here are some great mirrorless cameras that you should have a look at.
|Chart||Sony Alpha A6000||Panasonic LUMIX DMC-G85MK 4K||Panasonic Lumix G7KS 4K||Canon EOS M50|
|Display Size||3 in||3 in||3 in||3 in|
|Optical Sensor Resolution||24.3 MP||16 MP||16 MP||24 MP|
|Photo Sensor Size||APS-C||1/2.3-inch||Four Thirds||APS-C|
|Video Capture Resolution||FHD 1080p||4K DCI 2160p||4K UHD 2160p||4K UHD 2160p|
The Sony Alpha a6000 is a mirrorless DSLR that delivers on speed. Test the limits of your creativity with the premium mirrorless DSLR focused on speed.
Every artistic shot you take—from fast-action to candid— benefits from 24.3MP detail and the world’s fastest auto focus6.
For capturing crucial moments that go by in a blink, the a6000 can shoot 11 photos in one second. It’s compact and easy to use, too.
Two quick-access dials let you change settings on the fly. Very intuitive.
As for Sony mirrorless cameras, this one has glowing reviews. One reviewer, “I have nothing but good things to say about this camera. I have owned my Sony A6000 for just over a year now and it has been nothing short of perfect. I am a beginner photographer and it has taken high-quality, professional photos.”
The revolutionary Panasonic LUMIX G7 offers over 24 compact lens options built on the next-generation interchangeable lens camera standard (Micro Four Thirds) pioneered by Panasonic.
Its “mirrorless” design enables a lighter, more compact camera body which is great for travel. It also offers cutting-edge video, audio, creative controls, wireless, intelligent-focusing, and exposure technologies not possible with traditional DSLRs.
This is a great mirrorless camera for the novice photographer and advanced photographer. It’s extremely easy to use right out of the box, but once you figure out the capabilities, you will be amazed at the images you take.
If you are looking for Mirrorless cameras for video footage, the LUMIX 4K Ultra HD video pause and export as a 4K Photo mode, you’ll never again miss that one shot that perfectly captures a scene.
One reviewer says, “I absolutely love this camera. I did hours and hours of research before spending this much money on an SLR/DSLR camera, and hands down this camera came up as the best choice. It has all the features and quality of cameras that cost twice as much.”
Its “mirrorless” design enables a lighter, more compact camera body that includes cutting-edge video, audio, creative controls, wireless, intelligent-focusing, and exposure technologies not possible with traditional DSLRs.
Plus with the in-body gyro sensor control, make this one of the best Mirrorless cameras with image stabilization that is not possible with traditional DSLRs.
One reviewer says, “Great camera. Images are clear and crisp. Should have bought on first impression, but researched Sony, Canon and other Lumix models. They all brought me back to the G85.”
Fujifilm is a popular camera for many travelers around the world, and with the features they have, I can understand why.
One of the Top mirrorless cameras in the market today, it can capture images exactly as you see them with dial-based controls and a variety of exposure modes.
The compact and lightweight camera body, which sits comfortably in your hand, is both fun and simple to use.
With the X-T20, it offers a full Manual Mode for creative control and a handy Auto Mode that makes it simple to capture a wide range of scenes.
These two modes combine with the tilting LCD monitor and touch screen operation for intuitive shooting.
One reviewer says, “Wow, I am completely blown away by the image quality coming out of this camera with the 18-55 kit lens (the more expensive one). The images are on par with those I would take with my 5Dii and a very good prime lens.”
The mirrorless cameras Canon has to offer are exceptional and the Canon EOS M50 camera is a great travel camera to have in your camera bag.
The compact and easy-to-use EOS M50 camera helps you capture the world in vibrant images and impactful 4K UHD videos.
With features from fast and accurate Dual Pixel CMOS Autofocus to a built-in electronic viewfinder, it’s easy to see and savor the best memories of your life.
Plus when it comes to video The EOS M50 camera records up to 4K UHD* 24p. This can give your videos a beautifully cinematic look.
You can also shoot in Full HD 1080p or go for a smooth slow-motion effect using high-speed 120p in HD.
One reviewer says, “The picture quality is amazing. I took a few Youtube classes (I recommend Chris Bray’s series.) to learn about aperture, shutter speed, etc.
This opened up a whole new world of creativity for me. The M50 has all the controls you need to make stunning professional-looking pics (you know the ones with the blurry background or precise focus points.).”
The Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II is a surprisingly sophisticated camera that’s a joy to use.
Whether you’re a novice just snapping shots of your everyday life or a photo enthusiast looking to maximize your creativity.
The E-M10 Mark II delivers with a compact profile, intuitively placed controls and an advanced 5-axis image stabilization system that ensures perfection with every shot!
Of the many mirrorless cameras reviews on Amazon, one says, “If you are ready to go beyond cell phone pictures and point-and-shoot cameras, then this is a fantastic camera at a great price. I won’t even try to mention all the features because it would take all day to describe them.”
Best Mirrorless Cameras Over 1000 Dollars
|Chart||Sony A7ii||Fujifilm X-T3||Nikon Z6|
|Display Size||3 in||3 in||3 in|
|Optical Sensor Resolution||24.2 MP||26.1 MP||24.5 MP|
|Photo Sensor Size||Full Frame (35mm)||1-inch||Full Frame (35mm)|
|Video Capture Resolution||4K UHD 2160p||4K DCI 2160p||4K UHD 2160p|
|Viewfinder Type||electronic viewfinder||electronic viewfinder||electronic viewfinder|
Sony mirrorless cameras are an extremely popular brand because of the compact size and great image quality for travel.
The Sony Alpha a7IIR mirrorless camera is a favorite of mine because it is the world’s first 5 axis in-body image stabilization in a full-frame camera.
You can capture stunning images with full-frame, 24.3MP resolution.
Plus, it’s compatible with Sony’s E-mount lenses and others with adaptors.
As for Mirrorless cameras for beginners, this is perfect for entry-level photographers because of the new autofocus algorithm which improves subject-tracking performance and focusing speed by approximately 30%.
One reviewer says, “I fell in love as soon as I shot for the first time & realized what I’ve been missing out in all these years. This camera has allowed me to explore a different style of photography as I can do things that I previously couldn’t. I have taken some amazing shots with this relatively intuitive camera.”
Launching x series mirrorless digital cameras into its fourth generation, the Fujifilm x-t3 features an all-new back-illuminated 26.1MP X-Trans CMOS 4 sensor and x-processor 4 Processor.
Delivering superb image quality, dramatic AF performance, excellent tracking performance of fast-moving subjects and blackout-free burst shooting, the x-t3 is also the first APS-C mirrorless camera capable of 4K/60P 10bit recording to meet the needs of professional videographers.
Amazon customer reviews: “I’m a professional commercial photographer, and when I initially bought into the Fuji system it was for personal use. I wanted a compact mirrorless system that I could take with me and not feel like I was working.
Over the years as the cameras improved they started becoming my working cameras simply because I enjoy working with them. I now use my Fujis for most event work because I could easily carry 2 cameras and get the same image quality of my full-frame Nikons for this type of work without all of the heavy gear.”
The Nikon Z6 combines a 24.5MP Full-Frame BSI image sensor with Nikon’s advanced EXPEED 6 image processor for the sharp, vibrant, high-resolution photos and videos that Nikon is renowned forThe Z 6 is perhaps the most adaptable camera we’ve ever created.
It’s at the sweet spot of speed, resolution and low-light performance.
All combined with the advantages of a lightweight mirrorless design, a revolutionary new full-frame lens mount with matched lenses and seamless integration with Nikon’s DSLR system—including the F-Mount NIKKOR lenses you love.
Promising review, “I moved to this from Sony A7RIII and I have no regrets.
Sony has released a ton of mirrorless cameras by now, but their colors still seem wrong to me, and A7R3 would routinely blow out highlights on the skin.
Nearly all of Nikon Z6 images, in contrast, have pleasing colors and correct exposure. The lens kit is great as well, probably one of the best kit lenses ever offered. Kudos to Nikon.”
How To Make The Best Out Of Your Mirrorless Camera During Travel
With the great selection of mirrorless cameras available at a price point you can afford, here are some tips for getting the best out of your mirrorless camera while traveling.
Learn How To Take A Great Photo
Regardless of whatever camera you decide to take with you traveling, any traveler should know how to take a great photo.
The camera takes the photo, it’s the person behind the camera the will be the driving force behind that great photo.
And when it comes to taking a great photo with a smartphone camera, DSLR, or Mirrorless camera is to understand composition.
What do I mean by composition? This is when you understand the rules of taking a photograph.
Paying attention to the rules of third, centered composition and symmetry, foreground interest in a scene, and so much more to get the best out of the camera.
Practice Makes Perfect
Practice Makes Perfect And Take Your Mirrorless Camera With You Always
When you buy your first mirrorless camera or replacing an older model from your mirrorless camera collection, figure out all the buttons and menus on the camera.
Gone are the days of dropping a roll of film into the back of the camera a heading out, technology in mirrorless cameras is here and we all have to get used to it.
Your mirrorless camera will come with a set of instructions, and do yourself a favor and read them. It’s amazing what you can uncover when reading the dull instruction booklet.
The most important controls that any mirrorless camera operator should understand is setting the shutter speed, aperture, and ISO.
Once you have that under control then its time to get out there and start taking pictures.
Get A Great Editing Program And Trust It
A mirrorless camera takes amazing pictures, and I would suggest purchasing or subscribing in a good editing software program like Adobe Photoshop.
There are other great photo editing software programs out there as well, I just am used to Adobe because of the ability to handle the image quality that is imported in from a mirrorless camera.
Mirrorless Camera Accessories
Think about adding some mirrorless camera accessories to your camera kit.
Here are some suggestions on what to purchase with your new mirrorless camera.
- Extra Batteries – There is nothing like running out of battery power just as you are about to take the picture of a lifetime. By adding an extra battery or two in your camera kit will eliminate this problem.
- Memory Cards – A mirrorless camera takes high-quality photographs and my suggestion is to have a memory card size of 128 Gb or more to never worry about running out of space. (I recommend these memory cards, or click here for more options.)
- Camera Bag – Your mirrorless camera is an investment, and you should protect your investment. Having a good camera bag is really important when your traveling because traveling seems to be the time when things get damaged. Also, a good camera bag can hold all the accessories you will need to take that great photograph.
- Lenses – Mirrorless cameras have interchangeable lenses so you can get the most out of your camera. Think about adding a few lenses to your camera kit before traveling.
- Camera Cloths – This is an important accessory that you can’t forget. There are specially made cloths to take care of your camera and lenses to get rid of dust and fingerprints, don’t use your shirt!
Take A Photography Course
I always get a kick out of the idea of point and shot cameras, because even with those you still need skill in taking a great picture.
If you are serious about taking a great travel picture that you will cherish for years to come, the only way to do this is by taking a class on photography.
Go to your local community center and take a photography course. Or, if you are stuck in self-isolation there are several great online schools that focus on camera instruction for all skill levels.
Here are a few online classes that I have taken, and have improved my photography tenfold:
Now that you know what mirrorless camera can match your budget and the extras you should consider once you purchase your travel camera, it’s time to get out there and start taking pictures.
Unless you are stuck in self-isolation, then stay inside and take lots of pictures of birds from the comfort of your home.
As always, I would love to hear your feedback and questions, just let me know your thoughts in the comments below!
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