Do you love taking pictures of your beloved city’s lights at nights? Perhaps you love taking pictures of landscapes in the dark because they are breathtaking. Or, your job is to capture those remarkable moments at weddings and make worthwhile images? Whatever the case may be, one is for sure; you’re going to need a camera that outshines in low light conditions.
If you are determined to make the most out of your photography hobby/job, stick with us. From recommended products to a little buying guide, this article will provide you with enough information so that you can choose a good camera for you.
The Five best cameras for low light Photography
Finding the best camera for low light photography can be a challenging task. All those prices, shapes, sizes, types make shopping far from interesting. That’s why we’ve made this list; to help you with buying a good camera for your picture-taking needs. Naturally, all of the products that we’ve listed have their own advantages and disadvantages. However, they are good value for the money. Whichever one you opt for, you will be satisfied with its performance. Now, let’s take a look at what these cameras have to offer.
The Absolute best cameras for low light – Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark II
- 1.0-inch, 20.1 Megapixel* CMOS sensor
- f/1.8 (W) – f/2.8 (T)
- 1080p Full HD video
- Multi-angle capacitive 3.0″ touch panel LCD
- Continuous shooting up to 8 fps
- High-resolution images
PowerShot G7 X Mark II is ideal for photographers who want to take shooting at another level. Good image quality, powerful autofocus system, versatile focal range and a large buffer for uninterrupted shooting make this camera one of the best cameras for low light photography.
Thanks to F1.8-2.8 maximum aperture and a handy 24-100mm equivalent focal range, the G7 performs well in low light conditions. If you travel a lot, this camera will allow you to capture all those worthwhile moments on your trips.
Vivid colors and a plethora of details mean that image quality is good. This is especially useful for photographing wildlife and landscapes.
What we also love about this camera is its lightweight and compact design. Because of that, you can carry it in your bag, or better yet, around your neck. That way, you’ll always be ready to shoot.
The camera’s LCD is designed in such a way that enables different positions so that you can take selfies, tilt the LCD downward for overhead shooting or position the LCD anywhere in-between. This feature certainly contributes to expressing your creativity.
- Ideal for shooting on the go
- Image quality
- Multi-angle LCD
- Short battery life
- After you shoot a burst of images, you’ll have to wait for 10 seconds before entering playback mode
- Fine details in images
The best low light DSLR camera
- 24.2 MP DX-format CMOS image sensor
- EXPEED 4 image processing
- 51 point autofocus system
- Built-in Wi-Fi
- No Optical Low-Pass Filter
- 6 frames per second (fps) shooting capacity
Our second choice comes from well-known Nikon. Thanks to image quality, its controls, and a lack of anti-aliasing filter, this is the best low light DSLR camera for detail-style shooting. But don’t think that this camera is designed only for this type of shooting. On the contrary, it’s versatile, thus is suitable for videography, street and event photography.
This camera has fast focus, due to 51 points autofocus system. Because of that, the camera is capable of taking pictures in low light conditions.
What makes this model stands out from the crowd is the image quality. Since the D7200 features 24.2 MP DX-format CMOS image sensor it will capture a notable amount of dynamic range (dynamic range refers to displaying highlights and shadows).
As for the battery life, with this camera, you’ll take up to 1100 shots per on a single charge.
- Image quality
- Good battery life
- Fast autofocus
- Size (too big)
- Not suitable for shooting moving subjects
The best low light mirrorless camera
- Built-in 5-Axis image stabilization
- 2.3 million dot OLED electronic viewfinder
- 0.62X magnification
- 8.5 frames per second burst shooting
Our next product comes from Olympus. Here we’re talking about the OM-D E-M10 Mark II – a mirrorless camera that delivers high-quality images offers a plethora of features and comes with an excellent viewfinder. That being said, this is, undoubtedly, the best low light mirrorless camera for shooting at night.
Thanks to 5-Axis image stabilization, and 2.3 million dot OLED electronic viewfinder with a 0.62X magnification, the camera works great in the dark as well as in low light conditions. In addition, it produces high-quality JPEG and RAW photos. Not only colors are vivid, but also there is a little noise in images.
The touch screen LCD is ideal for overhead and ground-level shooting. A touch technology allows quick access to menu operation, shutter release and image playback.
- Produces high-quality images
- Amazing viewfinder
- Ideal for shooting at night
- JPEG and RAW photos
- Touchscreen LCD
- Smaller sensor
- Continuous autofocus
- Complex menu system
The best low light point and shoot camera
- 40x Optical Zoom
- Built-in Wi-Fi and NFC
- 20.3 Megapixel CMOS sensor
- DIGIC 6 Image Processor
- 1080p Full HD video
- 3.0-inch LCD
Looking for the best low light point and shoot camera? Then look no further. With The SX720 you’ll be able to shoot at night, capturing the beauty of stars, landscapes, and buildings. Designed with traveling in mind, you can carry this camera with you wherever you go.
Although the camera is small, it doesn’t compromise the quality of images. This camera features 40x Optical Zoom, 20.3 Megapixel High-Sensitivity CMOS Sensor, and DIGIC 6 Image Processor. Thanks to these amazing features, the SX720 performs great in low light conditions. Moreover, it enables fast autofocus and fast continuous shooting. This is especially important if you want to shoot objects in motion.
The Image processor makes sure that the image quality in both stills and video is enhanced, giving higher resolution and less noise.
The creative shot mode allows you to take your creativity to the next level. There are 46 filter options to choose from, so you will have a great time making spectacular artistic photos. And when you’re done with editing images, you can share them quickly and easily, thanks to a Built-in Wi-Fi technology.
- Compact design
- Less noise
- Higher resolution
- Built-in Wi-Fi technology
- You’ll have to charge it often
- No optical viewfinder
The Best cheap low light camera
- A built-in GPS
- 16.2 MP “Exmor R” CMOS sensor
- Backlight Correction
- 3D Sweep Panorama mode
- 3D stills mode
- 16x optical zoom
With 16.2 MP “Exmor R” CMOS sensor, 16x optical zoom, a built-in GPS and 3.0-inch XtraFine LCD display, Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX9V is considered the Best cheap low light camera.
Thanks to a quality CMOS image sensor, this camera produces great pictures in low light conditions. Moreover, the image clarity is improved and grain is decreased.
What also contributes to a good image quality is image stabilization, fast focus, 3D panorama and 3D still image. Image stabilization will prevent blur, so the images will be sharp. Smile Shutter and Face detection technology come in handy when you want to take wonderful pictures of your kids, friends, and family. 3D Panorama and 3D still image will enable you to see the world from a new perspective.
Overall, this camera is a good choice if you love making memories on the go but don’t want to spend a fortune.
- Very affordable
- Clear display
- Good photo quality
- Video stabilizer
- Panoramic mode
- Great autofocus
- Takes time to change between video and photo mode
- Slow GPS
- Too bright flash
With a good low light camera, you will be able to take mesmerizing pictures that will express your creativity and talent. That being said, let’s see what features you should pay attention to when buying a low light camera.
Shutter speed represents the sum of time the shutter is opened in a camera. Shutter speed is measured in tenths or hundredths of a second. If you want to capture images on the field or you’re shooting car racing, you should buy a camera that is capable of shooting 1/500 of second or faster.
Image stabilization reduces blur that is caused by hand shake. There is optical and digital stabilization. The first one is better because it will physically move an element in a camera to neutralize shake. The second one has built-in software that corrects image blur, but it doesn’t deliver as good results as optical stabilization.
ISO refers to how much light a sensor can capture. If you’re taking pictures of objects in motion or you’re shooting handheld, you probably want a camera with higher ISO. This allows for increasing your shutter speed.
On the other hand, the higher ISO the more noise there will be in your picture.
Noise refers to the distortion in digital photos. The distortion happens in the case where the ISO is pushed high. In another word, if you’re shooting in low light conditions, you won’t like the quality of pictures because there will be variations in brightness. Moreover, noisy photos aren’t very sharp. With all this in mind, you should choose a camera with wider apertures and shoot at lower ISO.
Whether you’re a professional photograph or a beginner, you should take into account sensor size. When it comes to performance in the dark, a full frame camera is the best of the bests. Why? Well, because it features a sensor that has the same size like an individual frame of conventional 35mm film. This means that a full-frame camera has large pixels, thus it has an improved performance in low light conditions.
However, a full-frame camera is quite expensive, so if you aren’t willing to spend a fortune, you should go with a camera that has a smaller sensor, such as Micro Four Thirds (MFT) camera or APS-C camera (a crop sensor). But, keep in mind that these cameras won’t perform as great as a full-frame camera in low light conditions.
When it comes to choosing lenses, you should go with a wide-aperture prime lens. This lens is designed in such a way that it collects the maximum amount of light. Lenses that have fast apertures and optical image stabilization provide sharper images in low light conditions.
Focal length is represented in millimeters or is specified by a magnification factor. The focal length refers to the angle of view and the magnification. When the focal length is long, the angle of view will be narrower and the magnification will be higher. On the other hand, shorter focal length means a wider angle of view and a lower magnification.
There are two types of lenses – zoom, and prime. While zoom lenses offer variable focal length, prime lenses deliver better image quality because they have fixed focal length.
If you’re shooting portraits and landscapes, you should choose zoom lens. But, if you’re working in low light conditions, you should go with prime lenses.
Shooting rate (FPS)
Shooting rate or Frames per Second is a continuous shooting mode. Some DSLR cameras offer up to 10 fps. This is especially useful if you’re going to shoot fast action.
Well, that’s all from us folks. We hope that we gave you new insights on how to choose the best camera for you. Keep in mind the features we’ve mentioned and you won’t have any difficulty to find the camera that will perform well.
All of the products that we’ve listed are of a good quality. But, we’d still like to single out the number one, that is, Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark II. With excellent image quality, Multi-angle LCD and fast focus, this camera really has it all.
So, what are you waiting for? Find that perfect low light camera for you and get the most out of shooting!
Last update on 2018-02-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API