Looking for a mirrorless camera that costs less than $1000?
Below, you will find our 5 best mirrorless models, ranging between $500 and $1000.
These cameras are perfect if you’re a complete beginner, or even a more experienced photographer just looking for good features in a compact camera.
Why a mirorrless camera? They are extremely small and light, offer plenty exciting features such as 4K video, shooting 8 frames per second or even more, built-in image stabilization and much more.
To be honest, if you’d randomly pick any of the 5 cameras below, you would still end up with a camera that can be used for many different types of photography. Since we all have our own needs though, we have decided to pick out the 5 best cameras available today that give you the most for the money.
5 Best Mirrorless Cameras Under $1000
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1. Olympus OM-D E-M10 III
If you are looking for a small, compact and cheap camera that has plenty of exciting features, the Olympus E-M10 III is our top pick.
It’s the cheapest Olympus OM-D mirrorless model, but this little camera can record 4K videos at 30fps or even HD at 120fps.
Inside, you will find a 16MP sensor, built-in image stabilization, an articulating touch screen LCD, 8.6 frames per second and 121 AF points (compared to 81 on the previous model).
You’re probably thinking you’re losing a lot of features since the OM-D E-10 III is so cheap. Is that true?
The only negative thing we could find is the same as with its predecessor; there’s no weather sealing. Not a deal breaker since many more expensive cameras don’t offer that either, but we had to point out something. If you’re serious about video recording, you should also know that there is still no external microphone port so you’ll have to spend more if professional audio quality is a must for you.
The Olympus OM-D E-M10 III is a brilliant camera if you want to spend as little as possible, yet still receive all the latest features such as 4K videos, built-in stabilization, 8.6fps and great imaging sensor. It is extremely light and compact so it’s excellent for daily photography, traveling and also other types of photography; from sports, landscape, weddings and so on. Put it in your pocket and go!
2. Sony A6300
The Sony A6300 is a great deal for the price. We recommend it if you’re looking for a compact mirrorless camera with 4K videos, great image sensor and fast shooting capabilities.
It’s a perfect travel companion, but can just as well be used for sports, portraits, low light and daily photography. The A6300 uses a 24.2MP sensor and 425 phase-detect AF points, allowing you to be very precise when it comes to focusing on a specific part of your subject.
It’s very similar to the newer A6500, but the main differences are that there is no touch screen available, and there also is no built-in image stabilization.
The Sony A6300 can record 4K videos at 30p, 120fps in Full HD, there’s 11.1fps in burst mode and its body is environmentally sealed. The 3.0″ LCD screen is fully articulated which makes shooting subjects way above/below you much easier, especially if you do lots of photography using a tripod. The A6300 also has built-in Wi-Fi, NFC, and allows you to pair your smartphone with it (remote control).
As you can see, the A6300 and A6500 are very similar cameras. That extra $500 difference does get you nice extra features, but not everyone will find them worth it. If you think the A6300 is perfect for your needs, go get it. We put in our list because it’s an amazing camera that only costs around $800.
3. Fujifilm X-T20
The Fujifilm X-T20 costs around $1000 and is sort of a cheaper version of the more expensive, X-T2.
They share a lot of similar features: for starters, they have the same 24MP APS-C sensor, a 325-hybrid AF point system, 8 frames per second and ISO up to 51,200.
What’s different? Well, since you’re paying less, you lose environmental sealing that the X-T2 has. Fastest shutter speed is 1/4000 instead of 1/8000, the viewfinder is slightly smaller, and there is only 1 x SD memory card slot instead of 2.
Video wise, the X-T20 has no headphone port but otherwise offers same recording options; 4K at 30p with good quality.
It does have a few “advantages” though; the LCD is now touchscreen, the camera weighs noticeably less and it also has a built-in flash. If you’re looking for the best image quality, both cameras deliver the same so you don’t have to worry about anything. Expect beautiful, colorful shots.
The X-T20 is really a smaller and cheaper version of the X-T2. Great for any type of photography, whether it’s streets, sports or casual/traveling, the X-T20 is definitely worth the money.
4. Panasonic G85
The Panasonic G85 is not as popular as the rest of these cameras, but it’s another 4K-capable mirrorless model that offers plenty for the price.
Inside, we find the same 16.1MP sensor as in the Panasonic GH4. You’ve got sensor-shift image stabilization that helps up to 5 stops, a touch screen enabled 3.0″ articulating LCD and environmental sealing. Seeing as the G85 costs less than $1000, this weather sealing addition is great if you’re looking for a camera to use in tougher conditions.
Seeing as this is also “cheaper” version of the more expensive GH5, what do you lose? Well, you’ve still got 4K video recording, just not with as many additional features. Most people who aren’t serious about videos won’t miss them, so as long as you’re looking to get good 4K footage straight out the camera, the G85 is absolutely fine.
The number of focus points is much smaller, with 49 vs 225. It can shoot slightly slower, 9fps vs 12fps, but anything over 7 is excellent for wildlife and sports. Both of these advantages aren’t really “bad” or anything, it’s just that the GH5 offers that much more for the money. You won’t feel limited by them.
Panasonic G85 is perfect if you’re looking for an advanced mirrorless camera that doesn’t weigh too much, offers exciting features such as 4K videos, built-in stabilization, 9fps and touch screen, but doesn’t cost nearly as much as the GH5 and is also weather sealed.
5. Canon EOS M6
The Canon M6 is one of Canon’s entry-level mirrorless cameras on the market.
As far as inside specifications go, it’s identical to the more expensive M5; same 24MP sensor, 9 frames per second, Full HD video at 60fps, digital image stabilization, touch screen LCD and so on.
The main difference is in the viewfinder; or better said, the lack of it. Canon M6 has no viewfinder which means you can only take pictures/videos using the LCD screen. In return, the camera is slightly lighter and smaller. In our opinion, the difference in weight is so small you could never tell. The 3.0″ LCD is touchscreen and can be tilted, just like the M5.
Simply put, if you like the Canon M5 but want something cheaper and don’t care about using the viewfinder, the M6 is brilliant. It’s super small which makes it great for traveling, casual photos, videographers, but can also be used for anything that’s more advanced. Don’t forget, on the inside, the technology if this camera is quite good and comparable to more expensive Canon DSLR models.
While Canon’s mirrorless cameras don’t have that many native EF-M lenses yet, you can use an adapter that allows any EF compatible lens to work with it (over 80, and that’s only from Canon). If you don’t care about Canon’s lenses, then we recommend you to seriously consider the Olympus sitting at number one spot on this list.