Best mirrorless camera for video 2022
Thereu2019s no single u201cbestu201d.
I depends on your list of requirements.
u201cBest for meu201d isnu2019t necessarily relevant to you, but I can at least include some suggestions and the u201cwhyu201d behind them.
Some basics to ask about:,Does the camera fit my budget,Does the camera work with any of my existing gear, or must I buy new lenses, too? Is that also in the budget?,Does my budget include anything else I might need (lights, mics/audio, tripods, racks, etc).
,Whatu2019s my application? Can I use a stills-for-video camera rig on a tripod? Do I need mobile video? Run and gun shooting?,Can I live with consumer-grade video?,Can I live with 10-bit Log video?,Do I demand raw video?,Do I need cinema lenses, or can I get by with still-camera lenses.
,I could probably go onu2026 but you get the idea.
For the kinds of video I shoot u2014 not much these days, but occasionally u2014 itu2019s events, music, etc.
Iu2019m not out on the street.
So I can probably use a tripod, and a stills-for-video rig.
If I needed an upgrade from my current gear, Iu2019d consider:,The Panasonic GH5 delivers most of what Iu2019d demand.
It fits all of my way-too-many Micro Four Thirds lenses, so all Iu2019d need is the camera body and some batteries to add it to my existing system.
It supports pro-grade video, in-camera DCI-4K 4:2:2 10-bit V-Log recording with no 30-minute limits, no need for recording to an Atomos Ninja.
Unlike just about every still or u201chybridu201d camera except other Panasonics, this camera also supports very flexible under/over-cranking.
,My other choice would be the Blackmagic Design Pocket Cinema Camera 4K.
This also fits all my lenses, and while it looks very much like a still camera, itu2019s really designed just for video.
Itu2019s probably still the cheapest camera that can shoot in CinemaDNG raw, which is the main point.
And it keeps that cheap, in that it can shoot to USB 3.
1-based SSD drives.
No need for any exotic memory modules.
,Yet another Micro Four Thirds option is the Z-Cam E2.
This is another made-for-video model.
Itu2019s big claim to fame is that itu2019s got crazy fast recording, 160fps in 4K, 240fps in HD in AVC, HEVC, or ProRes.
Tragically, this uses the on-the-way-out CFast memory card standard, but it does also allow external USB recording, so thereu2019s no requirement for a big investment in CFast cards.
Thereu2019s also itu2019s little brother, the E2C, which records on SDXC cards and at far more normal frame rates, but only costs $800.
,If I didnu2019t have any of my own gear and was just after a new system for video, I might look at the L-Mount System.
Part of thatu2019s because Panasonicu2019s supporting it with very expensive full-frame versions of their GH series (the SH1 is the current model), but surprisingly, also because of the new Sigma fp.
This is the worldu2019s smallest full-frame camera, and itu2019s really intended for video, somewhat like the Blackmagic cameras.
No viewfinder or much else, but itu2019s got a dozen places to bolt on the accessories you need.
And unlike most full frame still/hybrid cameras, Sigma has designed this one with very good heat sinking, so you can actually shoot for hours without overheating.
,This camera is so video-oriented, it doesnu2019t even have a focal plane shutter.
It does, however, record CinemaDNG in 8-bit, 10-bit, or 12-bit, as well as AVC.
And like the Blackmagic, it can record directly to an external SSD, no need for a video recorder, if you need longer recording times or just the security of a drive vs.
a memory card.
,And while you may not find what you need yet in L-Mount, Sigma makes an adapter for Canonu2019s EF-Mount lenses, and it works pretty well.
This is in part because Sigma has been a lens maker for decades and understands the Canon lens protocols, but also because they actually used the Canon EF electronic control system, initially reverse-engineered, in their own SA-Mount DSLR system.
,And if youu2019re already using Canon gear, another choice is the Blackmagic Design Pocket Cinema 6K camerau2026 not sure where they buy their pockets.
This is a Super35mm-sensor camera (basically APS-C) and itu2019s directly using an active Canon EF lens mount.
Itu2019s basically a bigger, badder version of the 4K.
,I used to shoot video on Canon DSLRs, but they really seem to have hauled out the u201cCanon Cripple Hammeru201d on their still cameras.
Most of them crop heavily in any 4K mode, they donu2019t do in-camera 10-bit, they donu2019t do DCI-4K, just UltraHD-4K, etc.
On the other hand, some people do swear by u201cCanon Coloru201d and thatu2019s enough for them (and some people swear at Sony Color, but still use their gear, too).
,So these are some that Iu2019d recommend.
I donu2019t know your needs, of course, or just where your video is going.
If youu2019re doing the run & gun thing, an old-fashioned camcorder might really be what you want.
,I actually shoot on my Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II these days more than any other camera, as itu2019s got surprisingly good video for a camera thatu2019s got no reputation for video.
I got this camera without even thinking about using it for video, but it actually put my other gear to shame.
Sure, itu2019s 8-bit only, but with a log mode, 200Mb/s+AVC recording in DCI-4K, AVC-Intra mode, unbeatable in-camera stabilization, and a flippy screen.
And these days, Iu2019m not doing all that much video, so this is sufficient, but as you might guess, I have thought about what Iu2019d buy if I needed an upgrade.
,Iu2019m not sure any mirrorless camera shoots bad video anymore, but some are better than others.
Consider that theatrical films were occasionally shot on DV and DVCAM camcordersu2026 yup, standard definition 24p video.
Youu2019d get better video on a smartphone these days.
and yeah, theatrical films have occasionally been shot on smartphones, too.
Not that you shouldu2026,August 2021 UpdateOne of the downsides of writing articles on technology that live a long online life, rather than more or less vanishing as a magazine article, is that technology does move along.
So as of now, there are some other good choices in video.
,While Sony has long been offering a u201cvideou201d special version of the A7 series, the A7s, itu2019s only with the A7s III that theyu2019re finally offering professional grade video.
The one thing the A7s series always did was offer exceptional low light performance.
Youu2019d kind of expect that given a 12 megapixel full frame sensor, but there you go.
But now itu2019s a BSI sensor, and theyu2019re supporting 10-bit 4K 4:2:2 video in-camera at up to 120fps.
And finally, a Sony camera can output at better than 8-bit to a Ninjau2026 in fact, it can do 4K at 60p in 16-bit raw!,They also solved the memory card issue in a nearly perfect way.
They have dual-card, dual-type slots, which take either SD UHS-II cards or Type-A CFexpress cards.
There are stil; things about Sony I find mysterious (bad color science) or just clunky (those menus), but this is now one of the best stills-for-video cameras, if you have a spare $3,500.
And itu2019s not all roses u2014 Sony still has the same moronic 30 minute recording limit, despite that no longer actually being a European tax dodge issue.
,Another great new video mirrorless camera, also an expensive full frame model, if the Canon R5.
Damn, but Iu2019ll swear that someone at Canon misplaced their famous Cripple Hammer on this one.
This bad boy shoots 8K, at least until it overheats.
Yeah, it can overheat, just like your old Sony A7II, but it can shoot in some 4K modes all day long, apparently.
And if thatu2019s not enough, itu2019s actually got in-body image stabilization (IBIS), a first for Canon and the last guys on the block to implement IBIS.
They rate it impossibly high, though u2014 apparently on the same scale that lets Sony claim a 5 stop improvement, but still, good on Canon!,But wait, thereu2019s moreu2026 eventually.
There are rumors of a Canon EOS R5c, which is basically an R5 with integrated silent active cooling, which would technically allow much longer recording, even at 8K.
With the R5 itself at $3900, this is probably starting to be some serious green here, but professional tools are not cheap.
,And finally, thereu2019s the Fujifilm X-T4.
Fujifilm was never a company know much for stills-for-video cameras, despite being one of the main manufacturers of high end video camera lenses.
The XT-4 isnu2019t explicitly video oriented, but itu2019s got video tweaks.
Itu2019s Fujifilmu2019s second IBIS effort, and it seems decent.
And they put in the flippy screen favored by videographers and particularly vloggers.
Video-wise, the X-T4 does up to 4K, UHD or DCI at up to 60p, though youu2019ll have to go to an external recorder for 10-bit 4:2:2 recording.
,,My only upgrade so far since I wrote this has been the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark III.
This is pretty similar to the Mark II, video wise, except that it can output raw video to an Atomos Ninja V recorder, which was kind of the thing for 2020.
Even Nikon offered a raw output upgrade to their Z cameras.
though you had to send the camera in.
,Iu2019m also a backer of the Alice Camera, a project that was originally supposed to deliver this fall, but thanks to the global chip shortage (a real issue), it looks more like sometime in early (hopefully) 2022.
This camera uses the same image sensor as the Panasonic GH5s, takes the same M43 lenses, and itu2019s video-oriented.
But the most interesting thing to me is their heavy use of artificial intelligence u2014 itu2019s got a Google Edge TPU AI processor inside.
Yes, it hooks to a phone for display, control, and networking, but the camera itself works stand-alone.
They have some cool ideas in AI autofocus, automatic color grading (with downloadable LUTs), and other fun stuffu2026 and itu2019s all being open sourced.
And sure, it also does stills!
Best Canon mirrorless camera for video
Name your budget between 1,000 and 3,000$ for a camera body.
Consider that a couple of system lenses will cost you the same as the camera body or multiple times the body price.
,I dont recommend the APS-C Nikon (Z50, Zfc) and Canon (EOS M) at all because they seriously lack native lenses.
Besides, Canon and Nikon ended production of DSLRs.
,The best Nikon Z9 will cost you a lot and it is a rather big professionally oriented sports and action camera.
Lenses for the Z9 are currently rather limited and also very expensive.
,Currently all Nikon and Canon cameras deliver good image and video quality and all are user friendly.
However, you must bring a certain amount of knowledge with you to make the best of it.