best dslr for landscape photography

Landscape shooters have a unique set of needs and requirements for their gear. On the image quality side of things, a good landscape camera should offer plenty of resolution and lots of dynamic range; from a physical standpoint, it should be weather-sealed and well constructed. Features like in-body stabilization, touch-sensitivity, a tilting LCD and good battery life are also a plus. We’ve rounded up the best dslr for landscape photography and best camera for nature and wildlife photography we think are good options for landscape photography and have chosen the best.

Best dslr for landscape photography

So, having discussed some of the features to look for in a landscape camera, below you will find a handful of options that I believe are some of the best dslr for landscape photography

Nikon D850

best cameras for landscape photography

With its massive 45.7-megapixel resolution and outstanding dynamic range, the full frame D850 is hard to beat. The camera captures extraordinary detail, boasts superb high ISO performance and is sharp, silent and handles intuitively. It has a 153-point AF system, 4K Ultra HD video recording and boasts a maximum burst rate of 9fps.

It is designed with a tilting touchscreen monitor, Focus Shift shooting mode (to make it easier to focus stack) and is one of the first SLRs to offer focus peaking. It is a great all round performer – an ideal choice for photographers who enjoy shooting both landscapes and nature. And it is my choice for my very own photography. Highly recommended.

Canon EOS 5DS R

best cameras for landscape photography

With a huge resolution of 50.6-megapixels, the Canon EOS 5DS R is currently the DSLR with the highest pixel count. A full-frame model, it is aimed primarily as a stills camera, lacking video-centric features like headphone sockets or HDMI output. This is a solid, professional camera with a price-tag to match.

It is great performer and, if speed and video aren’t a priority, this is an excellent choice. Its weather sealed body will appeal to landscape photographers who intend to shoot in all conditions and climates. Its low-pass cancelation filter is designed to enhance the clarity and sharpness of results, with minimal risk of artifacts. This is a serious piece kit of kit.

Canon 5D Mark IV

best camera for landscape photography

Another excellent full-frame camera with a more than adequate resolution of 30.4-megapixels. The Canon 5D Mark IV also boasts 4K video capture and a fast burst rate of 7fps among its specification – this is a top performer and a very good all-round model. However, with a similar price tag as the Nikon D850, it is not generally considered to represent the best value for money.

Nikon D780

Understandably, the Nikon D750 was a hugely popular camera and its replacement, the D780, is equally well-rounded.

It boasts a 24-megapixel full-frame sensor and 51-point AF system, 3.2inch, 2.36M-dot touchscreen monitor… and a whole host of other goodies aside.

In many ways, it shares the capabilities of the Nikon Z6. Its lower pixel count might deter some landscape enthusiasts, but its handling and duel card slots will prove appealing. Have no doubt, this is a very capable performer.

Canon 6D Mark II

If you are on a budget, but want a full-frame camera, look no further than the Canon EOS 6D Mark II.

With a 26.2-megapixel chip, improved AF system (compared to the original 6D) and articulated touch-sensitive screen, this is a good option for landscape togs. The lack of 4K video is unlikely to be a major deterrent to most photographers, but it only has one card slot and its viewfinder doesn’t offer a 100% coverage.

However, its boasts good weather sealing, is compact and delivers excellent low light performance.

Costing in the region of £1000, it is a great option for Canon users looking to buy their first full-frame digital SLR, but who can’t justify the big bucks on the higher-end models.

Sony A7R IV

best landscape photography camera

Unless you already have a foot firmly in either the Nikon or Canon camp, the Sony A7R IV is a great option. It is relatively compact, but its robust body houses a huge 60.1-megapixel chip – this is a camera that can compete with medium-format models and is squarely aimed at high-end users.

This is an innovative camera, with exceptional ability to record detail and dynamic range, fast continuous shooting and boasting a fast and advanced AF system. Meanwhile, its EVF is among the best in the business.

If the high price tag and large file size don’t deter you, then this is without doubt one of the best options for landscape photographers – pro or enthusiast. 

Nikon Z 7

best landscape photography camera

This is Nikon’s first foray into the mirrorless market – and they have made quite a statement with this camera. The Nikon Z 7 shares the large 45.7MP (effective) resolution of the Nikon D850 – and is constructed with a backside-illuminated (BSI) sensor design to aid light capture. There is no anti-aliasing filter and the sensor contains 493 phase-detect AF pixels to help focusing.

The camera has a 3.2-inch tilt-angle 2.1million dot touchscreen, a burst rate of 9fps, 4K UHD video capture, a 5-axis in-camera Vibration Reduction system and Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity.

It boasts an impressive 3.6-million dot EVF with 0.8x magnification, yet weighs a modest 675g. As you would expect from a Nikon, the Z 7 boasts stunning dynamic range and a wide and versatile ISO range. You can convert existing F-Mount lenses to the new, larger Z-Mount using the FTZ adapter. This is a great option for landscape photography, but it is certainly not a cheap option.

Canon EOS R

best camera landscape photography

The EOS R is Canon’s full-frame mirrorless option and it will appeal to existing Canon users looking to switch to a smaller, lighter mirrorless system. The camera has a 30.3-Megapixel sensor, silent shooting and is compatible with a new era of RF lenses. It has a high resolution EVF and vari-angle monitor. It boasts 4K video shooting, a burst rate of 8fps and a wide ISO range of 100-40000.

Like the Nikon Z7, the camera is designed with only one card slot, which might deter some buyers who want the added security of being able to back-up their images in-camera using a second card.

How to Buy a Digital Camera

1. Determine what you need

A mistake I see some digital camera buyers making is that they get sucked into buying cameras that are beyond what they really need. Some questions to ask yourself before you go shopping:

  • What do you need the camera for?
  • What type of photography will you be doing? (portraits, landscapes, macro, sports)
  • What conditions will you be largely photographing in? (indoors, outdoors, low light, bright light)
  • Will you largely stay in auto mode or do you want to learn the art of photography?
  • What experience level do you have with cameras?
  • What type of features are you looking for? (long zoom, image stabilization, large LCD display etc)
  • How important is size and portability to you?
  • What is your budget?

Ask yourself these questions before you go to buy a camera and you’ll be in a much better position to make a decision when you see what’s on offer. You’ll probably find the sales person asks you this question anyway – so to have thought about it before hand will help them help you get the right digital camera.

2. Megapixels are NOT everything

One of the features that you’ll see used to sell digital cameras is how many megapixels a digital camera has.

When I first got into digital photography, a few years back, the megapixel rating of cameras was actually quite important as most cameras were at the lower end of today’s modern day range and even a 1 megapixel increase was significant.

These days, with most new cameras coming out with at least 5 megapixels, it isn’t so crucial. In fact at the upper end of the range it can actually be a disadvantage to have images that are so large that they take up enormous amounts of space on memory cards and computers.

One of the main questions to ask when it comes to megapixels is ‘Will you be printing shots’? If so – how large will you be going with them? If you’re only printing images at a normal size then anything over 4 or so megapixels will be fine. If you’re going to start blowing your images up you might want to pay the extra money for something at the upper end of what’s on offer today.

3. Keep in mind the ‘extras’


Keep in mind as you look at cameras that the price quoted may not be the final outlay that you need to make as there are a variety of other extras that you might want (or need) to fork out for including:

  • Camera Case
  • Memory Cards
  • Spare Batteries/Recharger
  • Lenses (if you are getting a DSLR)
  • Filters (and other lens attachments)
  • Tripods/Monopods
  • External Flashes
  • Reflectors

Some retailers will bundle such extras with cameras or will at least give a discount when buying more than one item at once. Keep in mind though that what they offer in bundles might not meet you needs. For example it’s common to get a 16 or 32 megabyte memory card with cameras – however these days you’ll probably want something at least of 500 megabytes (if not a gigabyte or two).

4. Do you already own any potentially compatible gear?

Talking of extra gear – one way to save yourself some cash is if you have accessories from previous digital cameras that are compatible with your new one.

For example memory cards, batteries, lenses (remember that many film camera lenses are actually compatible with digital SLRs from the same manufacturers), flashes, filters etc.

5. DSLR or Point and Shoot?

Dslr-Point-And-ShootWhile digital SLRs are getting more affordable they are not for everyone. Keep in mind that they are usually bigger, heavier, harder to keep clean (if you’re changing lenses) and can be more complicated to operate than point and shoot. Of course there are some upsides also.

If you’re trying to make a decision between a point and shoot and DSLR you might want to read my previous posts titled Should you buy a DSLR or a Point and Shoot Digital Camera? and it’s companion piece How to Choose a DSLR.

6. Optical Zooms are King

Not all ‘zooms’ are created equal.

When you’re looking at different models of digital cameras you’ll often hear their zooms talked about in two ways. Firstly there’s the ‘optical zoom’ and then there’s the ‘digital zoom’.

I would highly recommend that you only take into consideration the ‘optical zoom’ when making a decision about which camera to buy. Digital zooms simply enlarge the pixels in your shot which does make your subject look bigger, but it also makes it look more pixelated and your picture ‘noisier’ (like when you go up close to your TV).

If you’re looking for a zoom lens make sure it’s an optical zoom (most modern cameras have them of at least 3x in length – ie they’ll make your subject three times as big – with an increasing array of ‘super zooms’ coming onto the market at up to 12x Optical Zoom).

7. Read reviews

Before buying a digital camera take the time to do a little research. Don’t JUST rely upon the advice of the helpful sales person (who may or may not know anything about cameras and who may or may not have sales incentives for the camera they are recommending).

Read some reviews in digital camera magazines or online to help you narrow down the field. There are some great websites around that give expert and user reviews on virtually every camera on the market – use this wonderful and free resource.

A little self promotion here – one such site is my Digital Photography Blog which is a site that collates the reviews of many sites from around the web. To use it best enter the camera’s model name that you’re looking for a review on in the search feature in the top right side bar. It’ll give you a link to a central page that has information on the camera as well as links to any reviews published online on that camera from around the web.

8. Hands On Experience

Photo by erinmariepage

Once you’ve narrowed down your search to a handful of cameras head into your local digital camera shop and ask to see and play with them. There’s nothing like having the camera in your hands to work out whether it suits your needs.

When I shop for a camera I generally use the web to find reviews, then I head into a street in my city with 4 camera shops side by side and I go from shop to shop asking for recommendations and seeing the cameras live in the flash. In doing this I generally find the same camera or two are recommended in most shops and I get to see them demonstrated by different people (this gives a more well rounded demo). I also get to play with it and get a feel for which one I could see myself using.

9. Negotiate

After you’ve selected the right digital camera for you it’s time to find the best price.

Once again, I generally start online (on a site like our store) and do some searches to find the most competitive prices on the models I’m interested in. With these in hand I’m in a good position to be able to negotiate in person with local stores and/or with online stores. I generally find that retail stores will negotiate on price and will often throw in freebies. Online stores are more difficult – most bigger ones don’t give you the ability to negotiate but smaller ones often will if you email them.

Don’t forget to ask for free or discounted bonuses including camera cases, memory cards, extra batteries, filters, free prints, cases etc. I even know of a couple of stores that offer camera lessons that you can ask to be included. Some stores will also consider giving you a trade in on older gear.

I generally do negotiating from home on the phone and only go into a store to pick up the camera after a price is agreed upon.

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