Best Cameras for Night Photography in 2024

By Tati Taylor 3 days ago, Cameras & Lenses

The best cameras for night shooting help to get clear images, especially if you’re shooting without additional gear. For instance, when you need to capture the night sky or a model under streetlights. The price tag for such cameras is between $750-$3,600.

Top 10 Cameras for Night Photography

nikon d850 camera for night photography
Nikon D850
  • 45.7 MP
  • ISO: 64-102,400
  • Battery life: 1,840 shots
nikon z6 ii camera for night photography
Nikon Z6 II
  • 24.5 MP
  • ISO: 100-51,200
  • Battery life: Up to 450 shots
canon eos 6d mark ii camera for night photography
Canon EOS 6D Mark II
  • 26.2 MP
  • ISO: 100-40,000
  • Battery life: 1,200 shots
sony zv 1 camera for night photography
Sony ZV-1
  • 20.1 MP
  • ISO: 125-12,800
  • Battery life: 260 shots
nikon z7 ii camera for night photography
Nikon Z7 II
  • 45.7 MP
  • ISO: 32-102,400
  • Battery life: 420 shots
fujifilm x-t4 camera for night photography
Fujifilm X-T4
  • 26.1 MP
  • ISO: 160-12,800
  • Battery life: 500 shots
panasonic lumix gh6 camera for night photography
Panasonic LUMIX GH6
  • 25.2 MP
  • ISO: 80-25,600
  • Battery life: 750 shots
nikon d810 camera for night photography
Nikon D810
  • 36.3 MP
  • ISO: 64-12,800
  • Battery life: 1,200 shots
nikon d7100 camera for night photography
Nikon D7100
  • 24.71 MP
  • ISO: 100-6,400
  • Battery life: 950 shots
fujifilm x-s10 camera for night photography
Fujifilm X-S10
  • 26.1 MP
  • ISO: 80-51,200
  • Battery life: 325 shots

Such cameras for photography should have a large sensor that can handle noise well and is supplied with optical image stabilization, fast shutter speed, and maximum ISO values. Besides that, you may need some extra gear such as a tripod to capture stunning nighttime shots.

1. Nikon D850 — Pro-Level Camera

nikon d850 night camera

Resolution: 45.7 MP | ISO: 64-102,400 | Shutter Speed: 1/8000 sec | Battery life: 1,840 shots

  • ✚ Impressive megapixel value
  • ✚ Terrific dynamic range
  • ✚ Long battery life
  • ✚ Advanced shot-by-shot shooting capabilities
  • Expensive

This full-frame reflex Nikon photography camera has 46MP resolution and is one of the fastest models produced by the company. The model is supplied with a backlit sensor that greatly improves the characteristics of the camera and the image quality when taking photos of the nightscapes.

In addition to the increased speed, the D850 also has one of the best autofocus systems. This camera for night photography includes an autofocus module, an expometer sensor, and a special autofocus processor, as well as a full range of autofocus modes and configuration options, which have to comply with the comparative high-resolution, focusing performance.

night camera nikon d850

Thanks to the BSI technology of the sensor and the “double enhancement” ISO processing, the night photos taken with this camera end up looking quite good, which is why it’s often considered to be the best camera for night photography.

Recommended lens:

Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8D ED-IF Autofocus Lens — Wide-angle lens for night photography, landscape, travel, wedding, documentary, or street shots.

2. Nikon Z6 II — For Amateurs

nikon z6 ii night camera

Resolution: 24.5 MP | ISO: 100-51,200 | Shutter Speed: 1/8000 sec | Battery life: Up to 450 shots

  • ✚ Easy-to-navigate menu
  • ✚ Large and responsive LCD screen
  • ✚ Optical viewfinder
  • ✚ Dual card slots
  • Battery life is middling
  • Some issues with customization

One of the standout features of the Nikon Z 6II is its exceptional dynamic range. It really shines when it comes to capturing details in both the highlights and shadows, even in challenging low-light situations while shooting at night. The image processing is top-notch, producing sharp and clear images even at higher ISOs.

It has a large and responsive LCD screen, making it easy to review all your realized night shots ideas. The optical viewfinder provides a more natural shooting experience compared to electronic viewfinders found in other cameras.

night camera nikon z6 ii

One unique feature I appreciate is the focus peaking, which helps confirm that your subject is in sharp focus. Additionally, the night camera's buffer depth is impressive, allowing you to shoot continuously without worrying about filling up the buffer too quickly.

Recommended lens:

Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8G — For shooting night sky and landscapes

3. Canon EOS 6D Mark II — Ergonomical

canon eos 6d mark ii night camera

Resolution: 26.2 MP | ISO: 100-40,000 | Shutter Speed: 1/4000 sec | Battery life: 1,200 shots

  • ✚ High-quality full frame image sensor
  • ✚ 45-point phase detect autofocus system
  • ✚ Comfortable design
  • ✚ 4K Time-lapse video recording feature
  • Slightly old sensor technology
  • The weather sealing is not really good

The Canon 6D Mark II is a powerful camera that performs impressively in challenging nighttime conditions. Its full-frame image sensor is a major plus, providing a larger light-sensitive surface compared to APS-C sensors. This translates to better image quality at higher ISO settings and improved handling of difficult lighting situations.

Another advantage is the camera's 45-point phase detect autofocus system. It's significantly faster and more accurate than its predecessor, making it a valuable tool in night photo sessions.

night camera canon eos 6d mark ii

One interesting feature of this Canon camera is the ability to enable continuous shooting after a 10-second self-timer. This can be handy to ensure you capture a perfect night shot without worrying about blinking. Additionally, the camera for night photography is capable of recording time-lapse sequences, although it falls short compared to professional models in terms of frame rate.

Recommended lens:

Canon EF 50mm F/1.2 — To make natural-look pictures.

4. Sony ZV-1 — For Traveling

sony zv-1 night camera

Resolution: 20.1 MP | ISO: 125-12,800 | Shutter Speed: 1/2000 sec | Battery life: 260 shots

  • ✚ Skin tone optimization
  • ✚ Good level of color noise reduction
  • ✚ Compact and lightweight design
  • ✚ Full range of manual shooting modes
  • Can't match the sharpness of full-frame
  • Disappointing battery life

One of the standout features of the Sony ZV-1 is its 1-inch sensor. It's larger than standard compact and smartphone sensors, which gives it a better dynamic range and less noise. This Sony camera does have good color noise reduction and can be used for night photo session.

night camera sony zv-1

In terms of design, the ZV-1 is small and lightweight, making it easy to carry around. The articulating screen feels sturdy and responsive, and the camera has a large red button for recording, as well as smaller shutters for photography and bokeh mode.

5. Nikon Z7 II — For Printing

nikon z7 ii night camera

Resolution: 45.7 MP | ISO: 32-102,400 | Shutter Speed: 900” | Battery life: 420 shots

  • ✚ Impressive image quality
  • ✚ Low native ISO setting
  • ✚ Full-frame viewfinder
  • ✚ Built-in image stabilization
  • Focus speed could be faster
  • High price

One thing that immediately caught my attention is the Nikon Z7 II’s impressive image quality, comparable to top DSLR models. With its 45.7-megapixel back-illuminated sensor and dual EXPEED 6 processors, this camera truly delivers outstanding image clarity and color, even while shooting at night.

night camera nikon z7ii

Speaking of shooting at night, the Z7 II offers a low native ISO setting of 64, allowing for maximum dynamic range and high-quality image files. This is a game-changer for night photographers, as it enables to capture incredible detail in dim light. Plus, the camera's design helps to mitigate issues like moiré and false colors, ensuring stunning image quality.

Recommended lens:

Nikon NIKKOR Z 24-70mm f/4 S — Super-compact lens for traveling.

6. Fujifilm X-T4 — For Beginners

fujifilm x-t4 night camera

Resolution: 26.1 MP | ISO: 160-12,800 | Shutter Speed: 1/32,000 sec | Battery life: 500 shots

  • ✚ Versatile model
  • ✚ Excellent color reproduction
  • ✚ Fast processor and mechanical shutter
  • ✚ Has fully automatic mode
  • No lit-up top screen
  • Some limitations with film simulation modes

The Fujifilm X-T4 excels in capturing both stunning stills and high-quality video, making it a versatile hybrid option. The fast processor and mechanical shutter are perfect for long exposures, allowing you to capture those mesmerizing night scenes. Plus, the bulb setting comes in handy when you want to experiment with even longer exposures.

night camera fujifilm x-t4

One standout feature of this Fujifilm camera is its film simulation modes. While they only apply to JPEGs, they're a lot of fun to play with and can add a unique touch to your night shots. Fujifilm's color science and film simulations work together to produce beautiful images with natural colors and realistic details.

Recommended lens:

Fujifilm Fujinon XF33mmF1.4 R LM WR — This fast 'street' lens is ideal for travel photography and night shooting.

7. Panasonic LUMIX GH6 — Hybrid Design

panasonic lumix gh6 night camera

Resolution: 25.2 MP | ISO: 80-25,600 | Shutter Speed: 1/32,000 sec | Battery life: 750 shots

  • ✚ Dual sensor technology
  • ✚ Optical image stabilization
  • ✚ Improved autofocus system
  • ✚ 100MP image-stacking High Resolution mode
  • Tracking can sometimes struggle
  • Does not have an in-built dual processor

One of the standout features of this camera for night photography is its 100MP image-stacking High Resolution mode. What's impressive is that you can now use this mode handheld, whereas before you needed a tripod. This is a game-changer for night photography as it allows for greater flexibility and convenience.

night camera panasonic lumix gh6

In terms of shooting modes, this Panasonic camera offers both mechanical shutter and standard shooting options. It also has a hybrid capability, allowing you to capture both high-quality stills and video. The burst shooting speed is incredibly fast, reaching up to 75 frames per second in both RAW and JPEG formats.

Recommended lens:

Panasonic 10-25mm F1.7 ASPH — This heavy lens differs by its super sharp images at all apertures, including wide open.

8. Nikon D810 — For Pros

nikon d810 night camera

Resolution: 36.3 MP | ISO: 64-12,800 | Shutter Speed: 1/4000 sec | Battery life: 1,200 shots

  • ✚ Advanced settings
  • ✚ Improved build quality of the shutter
  • ✚ Low level of noise and vibrations
  • ✚ Reliable weather-resistant body
  • Low shooting speed
  • Doesn’t have a low-frequency filter

According to reviews, photographers choose Nikon D810 because of the crystal clear images and color reproduction it offers. The focusing system with 4 squares provides higher image quality even when taking photographs at the night.

The manufacturers toned down the camera’s noise, which reduced the vibration and noise levels. You can notice that if you shoot in the main ISO range: nightscape photos look clear and highly-detailed.

night camera nikon d810

The night camera isn’t suited for dynamic scenes since it has a relatively slow burst shooting mode of 5 shots per second. Besides, if you are interested in flexibility and versatility, you should search for the best flip screen camera. The camera has a secure metal body, which is perfect for shooting in rough field conditions and something you’d want to find in the best camera for night photos.

Recommended lens:

Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G — Although this lens does not feature weather sealing, it performs exceptional night shooting performance.

9. Nikon D7100 — Budget

nikon d7100 night camera

Resolution: 24.71 MP | ISO: 100-6,400 | Shutter Speed: 1/8000 sec | Battery life: 950 shots

  • ✚ Weather-proof magnesium alloy build
  • ✚ Improved noise performance
  • ✚ Battery-friendly optical VF
  • ✚ Wi-Fi module
  • Wi-Fi and GPS require accessories
  • Continuous auto-focus mode may drain battery quickly

The Nikon D7100 boasts excellent image quality and performs well in poor light conditions. The camera offers a range of features and shooting modes that make it a breeze to capture stunning night shots.

One standout feature is the large reflex optical viewfinder, which provides a 0.94X magnification and 100% coverage. This means you'll get a clear and accurate view of your subject.

night camera nikon d7100

Plus, it has improved noise performance compared to its predecessor, the D7000. This means you can shoot at higher ISO settings without worrying about excessive grain or color artifacts.

Recommended lens:

Nikon 24-70mm F2.8E ED VR — Lens with weather sealing and very good image stabilization.

10. Fujifilm X-S10 — Durable

fujifilm x-s10 night camera

Resolution: 26.1 MP | ISO: 80-51,200 | Shutter Speed: 1/32,000 sec | Battery life: 325 shots

  • ✚ Excellent dynamic range
  • ✚ Built-in image stabilization system
  • ✚ Easy-to-use menu system
  • ✚ Fully articulating screen
  • Video quality is average
  • Limites function buttons

The Fujifilm X-S10 has a hybrid autofocus system, which is incredibly effective. It ensures that your shots are sharp and focused, even in challenging situations such as night shooting.

Additionally, the camera's 5-axis in-body image stabilization (IBIS) is really impressive. It allows you to take handheld exposures for up to one second without any noticeable shake, resulting in clear and crisp night photos.

night camera fujifilm x-s10

When it comes to image quality, the X-S10 doesn't disappoint. This camera for night photography can produce great results with minimal noise. It also has a fantastic dynamic range, capturing plenty of detail in both shadows and highlights, even in extreme exposure conditions.

Recommended lens:

Sigma 18-50mm f/2.8 DC DN — Compact zoom lens with a good build quality.

Additional Gear for Shooting at Night

additional gear for shooting at night

Tripod. Night shots often requires long exposures, and any movement, no matter how slight, can lead to blurry photos. So, a sturdy tripod will keep your camera for night photography steady and ensure those crisp, sharp images.

A remote shutter release. It helps you avoid any camera vibration during those long exposures. Some remote shutter releases come with nifty features like timers, intervals, and custom delays.

Flashlights. It can not only help you find things in your gear bag or startle critters in the brush, but it's also great for light painting and adjusting camera settings. You can even use a flashlight to assist your camera's autofocus when focusing on your subject.

Headlamps. They keep your hands free while working in the dark. You can use them to adjust camera settings, focus with autofocus, or even for some creative light painting.

Extra camera batteries and memory cards. Running out of power or storage space during a shoot is every photographer's nightmare. So, make sure to charge those batteries and have enough memory cards to capture all the incredible moments you'll encounter.

How to Choose the Best Camera for Night Photography?

Professional night photographers share the opinion that a full-frame camera allows capturing broader scenes and creating the desired compositions for night images.

The sensor size. Opt for a model with a larger camera sensor if you want to truly excel in capturing those magical night moments.

camera for night photography iso

ISO. This is the main characteristic you need to look at when trying to find the best night camera. The model should take good photos at high ISO. When taking pictures at nigh, photographers select ISO values from 3200 to 12000 and even higher.

Wide aperture. A camera with a wide aperture allows more light to reach the sensor, resulting in brighter and more detailed night sky pictures.

Dynamic range. When picking a camera for night photography, check its capability to lighten the shadows and darker parts of the shot without adding an unacceptable level of noise. The optimal dynamic range lies within 10-14.8 Evs.

A scene with a high dynamic range has incredibly bright glares (like the sun) and very dark spots (like a completely blacked-out black rock). A scene with a low dynamic range has relatively even light spread out through the entire scene, with the brightest parts of the image not being significantly brighter than the darkest areas.

camera for night photography shutter speed

Shutter speed. When taking photos of the night sky, you might need an exposure time of 10 seconds or even longer, while a nighttime city photoshoot will likely require the exposure to be set between 2-10 seconds. It all depends on the amount of available light and the desired effect.


  • • Can you achieve good results with a smartphone camera for night photography?

While smartphone cameras have improved significantly in low-light performance in recent years, they still generally struggle to match the image quality and versatility of dedicated cameras for night photography.

However, with careful technique, manual controls, and the use of additional accessories like tripods or external lenses, it is possible to capture decent results with a smartphone camera in certain night photography scenarios.

  • • Is it better to shoot in RAW or JPEG format for night photography?

RAW format is better for night photography. RAW files retain more image data and provide greater flexibility in post-processing, allowing for better control over exposure, white balance, and noise reduction, which can be particularly beneficial when dealing with challenging low-light conditions. JPEG files, on the other hand, are compressed and may result in a loss of detail and limited editing options.