10 Best Nikon Photography Cameras for Every Budget

By Tati Taylor 14 days ago, Cameras & Lenses

Top-rated Nikon cameras for beginner and professional photographers.

top nikon photography cameras

Similarly to the models released by Canon Co., Nikon photography cameras deliver flawless performance and allow capturing high-quality pictures. They are used by novices and professionals alike. Nikon Co. released a variety of models for different purposes. Due to this, it might be challenging to select the best Nikon photography camera unless you understand what features you need. These cameras stand out for high image quality, an impressive range of settings, and affordable prices.

Read this article if you want to select the most suitable model without watching tons of YouTube reviews. The models listed below cost from 300 dollars. They support the excellent resolution and are fitted with top-level AF systems.

Top 10 Nikon Cameras for Amateurs and Experts

  1. Nikon D3500 - The best Nikon photography camera
  2. Nikon D850 - For professional photographers
  3. Nikon Z5 - Compact camera
  4. Nikon D7500 - Excellent dynamic range
  5. Nikon D6 - Durable and reliable
  6. Nikon D780 - In-camera charging
  7. Nikon Z30 - For video streaming
  8. Nikon Z fc - Gorgeous design
  9. Nikon Coolpix P950 - 83x zoom lens
  10. Nikon Coolpix B500 - Budget model

On this list, you will find easy-to-use Nikon photography cameras with impressive AF capabilities as well as high-end cameras fitted with a full-frame sensor. Using them, you can take high-clarity photos with impressive resolution.

1. Nikon D3500 – Our Choice

The best Nikon photography camera
nikon d3500 nikon photography camera

Type: DSLR | Resolution: 24.2MP | Video: HD | ISO: 100 – 25,600 | Weight: 0.86 pounds

  • ✚ Clear pictures
  • ✚ Guide mode for novices
  • ✚ The most lightweight DSLR
  • ✚ Superb battery capacity
  • ✚ Excellent performance at high ISO
  • Rear screen can’t be tilted

In case you have little to no experience, the Nikon D3500 is a perfect option to consider. This model is suitable for beginner photographers as it has the guide mode that helps novices acquire the necessary skills. The camera supports high-precision focusing and has 5 fps continuous shooting speed, which allows you to use it for capturing moving objects. Using this camera, you can capture 60p HD video.

nikon d3500 nikon camera

Another selling point of this new Nikon camera is its 1,550-shot battery, which allows you to use it for long hours. Impressive battery capacity makes this model better than its competitors. Whether you want to test out a DSLR camera or are looking for a compact and affordable model for your trips, the Nikon D3500 is a great camera to buy. In addition, it’s compatible with a wide range of Nikon lenses.

Recommended camera lens: Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8E ED VR. This is a standard high-aperture lens for everyday shooting.

2. Nikon D850

For pros
nikon d850 nikon photography camera

Type: DSLR | Resolution: 45.7MP | Video: 4K | ISO: 64 - 102,400 | Weight: 2.02 pounds

  • ✚ Rotary display
  • ✚ High brightness of the LCD matrix
  • ✚ High-speed continuous shooting
  • ✚ Huge image resolution
  • ✚ Focus-peaking
  • Pricey
  • Slow autofocus in Live View mode

If you do not pay attention to the price, this photography camera is a real success. Focusing through the viewfinder is fast because it has the focus module of Nikon D5. It is also a great choice for sports, as it allows you to shoot even serious events and keep moving objects in focus. The reportage potential of the camera is complemented by continuous shooting with up to 7 frames per second.

nikon d850 nikon camera

The new 45-megapixel back-illuminated matrix provides not only an amazing level of detail but also a low noise level at high ISO. Due to its advanced features, you can easily capture high-quality photos. The camera is also perfectly suitable for taking photos at 4K UHD.

Recommended camera lens: Nikon AF S NIKKOR 85mm f/1.8G. This lens allows you to capture a well-structured bokeh. With it, you can take photos of the highest clarity.

3. Nikon Z5

nikon z5 nikon photography camera

Type: Mirrorless | Resolution: 24MP | Video: 4K | ISO: 100-51,200 | Weight: 1.3 pounds

  • ✚ Easy-to-use
  • ✚ Integrated VR
  • ✚ Focus stacking
  • ✚ Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connection
  • ✚ Impressive AF capabilities
  • No vari-angle display
  • 4K footage with 1.7x crop

The Nikon Z5 has a compact, fully weather-sealed body. It won’t slip out of your hands even when they are sweaty. This Nikon digital camera boasts 273-point AF, which ensures high clarity across the frame. It supports eye and animal detection, which makes it even more convenient to use.

nikon z5 nikon camera

This mirrorless camera stands out for its 4.5fps max burst rate. However, the previous version had more impressive capabilities. It is hardly suitable for those who specialize in wildlife or sports. However, despite some minor shortcomings, it allows you to record 4K UHD footage.

Recommended camera lens: Nikon NIKKOR Z 50mm f/1.8 S. It allows you to capture pictures with a mesmerizing bokeh effect even at short focal distances.

4. Nikon D7500

Excellent dynamic range
nikon d7500 nikon photography camera

Type: DSLR | Resolution: 20.9MP | Video: Full HD | ISO: 100-51,200 | Weight: 1.68 pounds

  • ✚ Confident work at high ISO
  • ✚ Optical viewfinder with 100% coverage
  • ✚ High continuous shooting speed
  • ✚ Microphone and headphones jacks
  • ✚ Decent autonomy
  • There is no built-in stabilizer
  • One slot for an SD card

Nikon D7500, which release is dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the manufacturer, is well assembled, comfortable to use, and allows you to focus on the shooting. The camera demonstrates sufficient speed and accuracy of autofocus, and it allows you to shoot at high speed – up to 8 frames per second. High ISO tolerance is satisfactory. The photosensitivity up to ISO 164,000 makes it impossible to get an acceptable image.

nikon d7500 nikon camera

Its sensor perfectly reproduces colors and halftones, and the electronics in most cases successfully cope with setting the white balance automatically. The wide dynamic range makes it possible to get stable results when shooting scenes with large differences in brightness.

Recommended camera lens: Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 28mm f/1.8G. The quick aperture will help you create a wonderful and natural bokeh effect, and its Nano Crystal Coat will remove unnecessary flares.

5. Nikon D6

Durable and reliable
nikon d6 nikon photography camera

Type: DSLR | Resolution: 20.8MP | Video: 4K | ISO: 100 – 102,400 | Weight: 2.8 pounds

  • ✚ Top-level battery
  • ✚ Low noise level
  • ✚ Accurate color reproduction
  • ✚ Solid build
  • ✚ In-built raw editing tools
  • Subpar continuous shooting speeds
  • Pricey
  • Live-view focus is not fast enough

Besides being a great camera for sports, this model is used by wildlife photographers and professionals who need to take photos in severe weather conditions. It is also popular among reportage photographers. The camera has a compact body resistant to the elements. What makes it the best Nikon camera for photography is its long battery life. Due to its impressive battery capacity, you can use it for hours. The 20MP sensor allows you to take superb photos in low-light situations.

nikon d6 nikon camera

When it comes to shooting video footage, this model might look more basic than some of its competitors. It supports shooting in 4K UHD, while other similar models allow you to shoot high-resolution videos at 4K CINE. Its contrast-detection AF delivers poor performance if you compare it to phase-detection focus systems.

Recommended camera lens: Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 200-500mm f/5.6E ED. Using this lens, you will easily capture professional-quality photos of birds, wildlife, moving objects, landmarks, etc.

6. Nikon D780

In-camera charging
nikon d780 nikon photography camera

Type: DSLR | Resolution: 24.5MP | Video: 4K | ISO: 100-51,200 | Weight: 1.57 pounds

  • ✚ Easy to handle
  • ✚ Quick AF
  • ✚ Uncropped 4K footage
  • ✚ Superb burst mode
  • ✚ Dual UHS-II card slots
  • Dual AF
  • Manual swapping
  • Costs too much

The Nikon D780 is a full-frame camera that caters to the needs of seasoned photographers. This model is suitable for professionals working in different genres. It is an upgraded version of the Nikon D750. The camera features a large sensor and up to 204,800 ISO. Another advantage of this model is the excellent image quality achieved due to the high resolution and impressive dynamic range.

nikon d780 nikon camera

Featuring a 51-point AF system, it delivers great performance even if you take photos in poor light conditions. When using its Live View mode, you can take photos at 7fps—12fps. Besides an impressive continuous shooting speed, it supports 60p video shooting, which allows you to use it for creating HD content. However, this model can hardly be considered the best option for videographers.

Recommended camera lens: Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 16-35mm f/4G ED. Nano Crystal Coat minimizes ghosting and flare, which allows you to take crisp and clear photos with a high level of detail.

7. Nikon Z30

For video streaming
nikon z30 nikon photography camera

Type: Mirrorless | Resolution: 20.9MP | Video: 4K | ISO: 100-51,200 | Weight: 1.48 pounds

  • ✚ Comfortable grip
  • ✚ Vari-angle touchscreen
  • ✚ USB-C support
  • ✚ Great value for the money
  • ✚ Excellent autofocus
  • No headphone jack
  • Doesn’t have Nikkor Z 'DX' lenses
  • No in-body image stabilization
  • Doesn’t have a viewfinder

In case you want to become a vlogger, take a closer look at the Nikon Z30 camera as it has everything that a novice user might ever need. It is fitted with loads of handy features, including a front-facing display and high-precision AF. Using it, you can shoot 4K footage with high-quality audio. Due to its well-thought-out design, it’s quite convenient to use and has multiple connectivity options.

nikon z30 nikon camera

Fitted with a small kit lens, this new Nikon camera looks somewhat similar to point-and-shoot models despite its larger size. It weighs 12.4 ounces and is 2.4 inches deep, which means that it won’t take up a lot of space in your bag. You can use it as a replacement for more expensive point-and-shoot cameras. It will come in handy to budget-conscious videographers and photographers who enjoy taking photos during their trips.

Recommended camera lens: NIKKOR Z DX 16-50mm f/3.5-6.3 VR. With it, you can take photos from both wide and regular angles. Whether you want to take landscape photos or capture urban spaces, you will enjoy using this lens as it boasts 4.5 stops of vibration reduction.

8. Nikon Z fc

Gorgeous styling
nikon z fc nikon photography camera

Type: Mirrorless | Resolution: 20.9MP | Video: 4K | ISO: 100-51,200 | Weight: 2.38 pounds

  • ✚ Good image quality
  • ✚ Superb ergonomics
  • ✚ High-quality video footage
  • ✚ Perfect for its price
  • ✚ Dials for days
  • Poor-quality materials
  • Comes without DX Z-mount lenses
  • Not weather-resistant

Nikon Z fc is a new mirrorless camera with a DX APS-C sensor. It is different from other models released by this brand and cameras produced by other manufacturers. It has an attention-grabbing retro design and convenient controls. This model looks like film Nikon cameras that were popular in the 70s. It’s the only mirrorless Nikon camera with a flip-out screen that has a vari-angle design. However, to give this camera a retro look, manufacturers had to remove the handle on the sight ride and get rid of in-built flash.

nikon z fc nikon camera

This camera supports high-speed burst shooting more (11 fps) as well as quick and precise AF. It allows you to get 21MP images of the highest quality. Another its advantage is that this model is compact and lightweight. It comes at a budget price, which makes it suitable for beginners and professional photographers alike. You can use it to adjust the setting manually.

Recommended camera lens: Nikon Nikkor Z 28mm F2.8. Featuring an f/2.8 aperture, this 28mm lens (42mm equivalent if you use it with Nikon DX format cameras) allows you to capture detailed images at the standard focal length.

9. Nikon Coolpix P950

83x zoom lens
nikon coolpix p950 nikon photography camera

Type: Bridge | Resolution: 16MP | Video: 4K | ISO: 100-51,200 | Weight: 0.81 pounds

  • ✚ Impressive image stabilization
  • ✚ Manual setting adjustment
  • ✚ Raw support
  • ✚ EVF and a vari-angle LCD
  • ✚ Wi-Fi and Bluetooth support
  • Some issues with AF when shooting small and fast-moving subjects
  • LCD doesn't have touchscreen capabilities
  • Bulkier and heavier than other cameras

Just like the P900, this camera stands out for its 83x optical zoom. Thanks to the 35mm equivalent focal length ranging from 24 to 2000mm, you can use it to shoot everything you want, from group photos to pictures of Lunar craters.

nikon coolpix p950 nikon camera

Dynamic Fine Zoom technology from Nikon extends this range to an impressive 166x. However, the image quality might worsen if you zoom in. The lens supports Nikon Dual Detect Optical Vibration Reduction, which allows you to get clear images even when shooting with a long focal length.

10. Nikon Coolpix B500

nikon coolpix b500 nikon photography camera

Type: Bridge | Resolution: 16MP | Video: Full HD | ISO: 100-51,200 | Weight: 1.19 pounds

  • ✚ Superb 16 MP CMOS sensor
  • ✚ Supports vibration reduction
  • ✚ Tilting LCD
  • ✚ Integrated NFC, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth modules
  • ✚ Excellent image stabilization
  • No External Flash Shoe
  • No touchscreen
  • Doesn’t have the viewfinder

Nikon Coolpix B500 is a convenient camera fitted with a telephoto NIKKOR glass lens. It allows you to record Full HD footage at 1080p and create a well-balanced composition in the frame using its flip-up LCD. With it, you can easily capture mesmerizing still images and videos in different lighting conditions thanks to its 16 MP low-light sensor. It supports Lens-Shift Vibration Reduction (VR) and has a well-thought-out menu layout. You can adjust its settings as you see fit. This Nikon digital camera has loads of beautiful effects and handy automated features.

nikon coolpix b500 nikon camera

You will appreciate the fact that the Coolpix B500 can be securely connected to your smartphone. It supports Bluetooth low energy technology, which makes it easier for you to share photos and control your camera remotely using compatible devices or the Snap app.

nikon d3500 image
Nikon D3500
  • Affordable model
  • The lightest DSLR
  • Great battery capacity
nikon d850 image
Nikon D850
  • Well-built
  • High-quality images
  • Focus-peaking
nikon z5 image
Nikon Z5
  • Compact size
  • Easy to use
  • Integrated VR

How to Choose a Good Nikon Camera?

If you want to purchase the best Nikon photography camera, keep in mind that there are many models released by this manufacturer. Thanks to it, you can easily select an option that suits your needs best. To select a perfect option, you need to take into account several things.

Matrix Size

The matrix is the heart of your camera and the main criterion for choosing your gear. Whether it is a full frame, crop or micro 4/3 (keep in mind that there is no Nikon camera with such a matrix), each matrix size has a worthy representative. If the full frame gives you excellent sharpness and image depth, the crop will be much more convenient for you to choose suitable lenses and it will give you better stabilization.

Matrix Resolution

how to choose the best nikon camera

Do not chase the highest megapixel camera. It will be useful only if you need to publish your photos in magazines, use them for posters, or if you want to print them in a very large format. Moreover, now almost every camera has enough megapixels.

Matrix Sensitivity

If you are going to frequently take photos in low-light conditions (for example, at dusk), choose a camera with the highest possible ISO values. Depending on the specific model of the device, the sensitivity can vary in the range from 50 to 25,600 units. High sensitivity values make it possible to take a clear picture at dusk or even at night, but in this case, you will inevitably get small image defects.


The biggest mistake those who buy a camera can make is to choose the most expensive body, and spend the rest of the money on some inexpensive lens. This is the wrong decision! If you want to get great high-quality images, you need to use a really good Nikon lens that can cost even more than your camera. The average price of a Nikon camera for personal use is about $1,000.

Manual Control

It is recommended to purchase a camera with manually adjustable settings (aperture, shutter speed, white balance, and matrix sensitivity). It will open unlimited shooting possibilities.

Size and Weight

choosing the best nikon camera

People used to think that the larger and heavier a camera is, the better it works. Now camera manufacturers have disproved this fact. More and more mirrorless cameras appear on the market. Most of them are powerful SLR cameras, but such models are much more expensive.

Image Stabilization

This allows minimizing camera shake. Some cameras have in-built image stabilization elements (IBIS), while others feature lenses with image stabilization. For instance, Canon lenses stand out for perfect image stabilization. Such cameras and lenses will come in handy for those who often need to shoot in poor light.


Using a modern digital camera, you can easily shoot a video. In case you need to shoot a long video, it’s better to select a model that allows you to capture high-quality footage. If you want to shoot clips, you won’t have any issues using any camera that was released during the last 5 years.


Before you buy a camera, even on the web, visit the photo equipment store where you can see the model you need and hold it in hand. Sometimes even the best camera by Nikon with all the suitable characteristics can be very unpleasant in your hands.


  • • Why Canon and Nikon are considered competitors?

These leading brands specialize in top-level photography gear. They are competitors as they release products in the same niche. They are known for their DSLR cameras and other models that can be used by beginner photographers and professionals alike. When looking for a camera, don’t focus only on the name of a brand. It’s more important to take into account the photography style you prefer as well as your budget and your level of experience.

  • • Nikon mirrorless vs DSLR camera – which option is the winner?

Mirrorless cameras are often used by travel photographers as they don’t take up a lot of space, are quite lightweight, and allow capturing high-quality footage. The only shortcoming of such models is that they are compatible with a limited number of lenses and accessories. DSLR models have great optical viewfinders, an impressive choice of lenses, and better battery capacity.

  • • Do I need to pay more attention to a Nikon camera or a lens?

In most cases, lenses are more important than a camera. If you try using an expensive lens with an entry-level DSLR, it will still allow you to capture excellent photos. However, if you have a poor-quality lens, you won’t be able to take professional pics even if you use a pricey camera.

  • • Does the Nikon warranty cover many devices?

The official warranty covers new and updated cameras released by Nikon as well as lenses, fieldscopes, binoculars, flashes, and various accessories bought from the official store or an authorized dealer.