Things move fast in the camera world these days, as manufacturers push for new innovations to keep their lineups relevant in the age of smartphones. Since our last guide, new models from Canon, Sony and others have arrived with big improvements in shooting speeds, autofocus and video. That's good news if you're a buyer, because the latest cameras are better than ever and it's easier to find deals on past models. Still, it can be hard to keep track of every new camera that comes along, and that's where we come in. Our 2021 guide will catch you up on all the latest models and bargains, so you can select a camera that fits your shooting needs and budget to a tee.
It was going to be tough for Fujifilm to follow up on the X-T3, a mirrorless camera that I and many others believe to be the best APS-C camera on the market. It was not only the prettiest and best-handling flagship out there, it was fast, compact and produced sharp, color-accurate photos. The icing on the cake was the awesome 4K video capabilities, something of a surprise for a Fujifilm camera. Fujifilm's answer is the X-T4, another big evolution in its flagship X-T series. It has the same 26.1-megapixel
Canon's new full-frame mirrorless RF system looked incredibly promising, but it got off to a rough start with the launch of the EOS R, a camera that was missing key features next to rival models from Nikon, Sony and Panasonic. Rather than introducing a better flagship model, however, Canon took the opposite approach. It's great to have a cheap full-frame mirrorless option, but the problem for Canon is that it only has one affordable RF lens option, and the other two pieces of glass are nearly twice as expensive as the camera itself. And while it's lightweight, portable and has a flip-around screen, the EOS RP is missing several key features, like in-body stabilization. For $1,299, does it truly deliver in value compared to other full-frame mirrorless options?
Fujifilm's X-T3 sure looks a lot like the X-T2, but don't be deceived. Aside from the handsome, compact body, this is a smarter, more capable mirrorless camera in almost every way. It's got a higher-resolution sensor, much improved autofocus and tons more speed. I've been using the camera for the last few weeks in and around Paris, taking both photos and video. Despite the high price and some deep competition, I feel it's worth the cost and then some. After the disappointing X-H1, Fujifilm's X-T3 is a fine return to form.
With the launch of the A7S III, Sony proved that it still rules the full-frame mirrorless camera market, despite impressive rival products from Canon. On the APS-C side, however, it keeps building the same cameras over and over using recycled parts from past models, with the only real improvements being the autofocus system. When Sony announced the A7C, I was worried it might be going in that direction with its full-frame cameras, too. The "C" is for compact, and it has a smallish body similar to the A6600, while using the A7 III's 24-megapixel sensor and other older parts. It also offers A7 III-like specs for 4K video, shooting speeds and more.