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Find the Right Camera for Beginners in 2023 With Features to Advance Your Journey


There’s no better time to hone your photography skills and try your hand at some fun picture-snapping. With plenty of free or affordable camera editing software, you can take photos, share them with friends and family members, and express your artistic instincts through the photographic medium more efficiently than ever before.

But if you’re still learning the ropes of photography, you’ll want a camera suited for beginners like yourself. Fortunately, you can find plenty of them on Amazon.

An excellent entry-level camera will likely have specific features and attributes like:

Above all other specs, your camera should produce excellent image quality. Try to look for one with a guide mode or optical viewfinder, as that may allow you to learn the different shooting modes and how to use different zoom lenses early on.

Want to learn more? Let’s break down the best cameras you can purchase for beginners right now.

1. Canon EOS 250D / Rebel SL3 DSLR Camera with 18-55mm Lens

Best for: College Students

Canon’s EOS 250D Rebel SL3 DSLR Camera is one of the best beginner cameras overall, but it’s perfect for college students. That’s because, as a renewed camera, it’s a little cheaper than it would be in mint condition. Yet at the same time, you can take advantage of a powerful photography device.

It includes an excellent camera bag, a 64 GB data card, and an electronic cleaning set. The batteries still have most of their capacity, and the product is eligible for a replacement or refund within 90 days if it doesn’t work as advertised. So it’s a good choice for college students who must pay attention to price and hedge their bets.

Regarding the camera’s quality, there’s a lot to like for budding photography students. The touchscreen is intuitive and easy to use, and the camera can take high-resolution images and 4K movies.

The camera can easily be linked to smartphones, tablets, or computers using Bluetooth or built-in Wi-Fi, so downloading your photos to your computer for editing or school assignment purposes should be quick and straightforward.

2. Nikon D3500 24.2MP DSLR Camera

Best for: Family Photos

The Nikon D3500 24.2MP DSLR Camera is another stellar choice, particularly for beginners who want to snap many photos of their families on an average weekend or vacation. This renewed camera still has great batteries and is in excellent condition, so you can get your hands on a good camera without breaking the bank.

This camera has excellent lenses and sensors, five FPS shooting options, and a 920 1K-dot LCD monitor so you can see your photos before you snap them in crystal-clear quality. The camera comes with a rubber eyecup, bag, strap, and other accessories that make traveling easy and fun.

Perhaps most importantly, this camera is straightforward to use, and it feels comfortable enough to hold in one hand while snapping stellar photos of your family members on the go. Consider this if you want a versatile camera to do everything reasonably well.

3. Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Camera With 16-50mm Lens

Best for: Travel Photos

The Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Camera is perhaps the best camera for beginners who want to take many high-quality travel photos. With a lens between 16 and 50 mm, you can take faraway shots and up close and personal pictures without compromising quality.

The camera is excellent for travel photos since it comes with a 64 GB storage card, so you shouldn’t run out of space for your photos anytime soon. A case, card reader, tripod, strap, cleaning kit, and other accessories add to the value of money here. You can take all these accessories with you on vacation and always be prepared to snap fantastic photos.

The camera’s sensor is particularly notable. That’s because it uses a gapless on-chip lens design. In a nutshell, this fills gaps between neighboring pixels and helps smooth over potential fuzzy spots in your photographs. Plus, the camera can double as a video camera and record up to 60 FPS 1080 P video!

4. KODAK PIXPRO AZ252 Astro Zoom Digital Camera

Best for: Budget-Minded Photographers

The Kodak PIXPRO AZ252 Astro Zoom Digital Camera is another very popular camera for beginners, and for good reason: it’s highly affordable yet pretty powerful for the price. It comes with a 32 GB card, accessory kit, rechargeable batteries, and case.

For a reasonable price, you’ll get a camera with a minimum shutter speed of 1/2000 and 30 seconds. This high-quality, compact camera can snap photos with 16 megapixels, with image stabilization and 25x optical zoom capabilities.

The 3-inch screen makes using the camera easy, and you can continuously transmit your photos or captured video to a computer or tablet via the inbuilt Wi-Fi software.

The AZ525 is particularly good for capturing good pictures of significant landscapes or group photos, so consider using this if you want a camera that will serve you well in various social situations and photograph opportunities.

5. Panasonic LUMIX GH6, 25.2MP Mirrorless Micro Four Thirds Camera

Best for: Serious Future Professionals

Panasonic’s LUMIX GH6 Camera is quite pricey, so you should only pick this up if you are committed to becoming an excellent photographer as a beginner. This expensive camera has much to like, including sensor-shift dual image stabilization and a low minimum shutter speed of 1/32,000 seconds.

This mirrorless camera can capture photos with 25 megapixels of still resolution. Furthermore, it can charge 4K 120 P tended video or 5.7 K 60 P video across various recording modes. Whether you snap still photos or record video, you’ll find that the camera produces incredible image quality and overall versatility.

Indeed, the camera is very stable, even in lowlight environments. As a high-resolution photo-snapping device, you can rely on it to produce top-tier photos time and time again. This might be a good camera if you are joining a photography program at school or you are willing to take serious classes to learn how to use the device to its maximum effect.

6. Sony ZV-E10 Mirrorless Camera with 16-50mm Lens

Best for: Scenic Photography and Vlogging

Sony’s ZV-E10 Mirrorless Camera is another quality piece of equipment, and it’s perfect for scenic photography. This preowned camera is versatile, effective, and powerful, with a flexible tripod, hand strap, and HDMI cable. You can easily set it up to capture photographs of vast landscapes with minimal input.

However, it’s also a good choice since the camera is built around portable photos and vlogging. The vari-angle screen, for example, allows you to frame up your shot perfectly, and it comes with an integrated directional microphone to record accurate sound from the front of the camera device.

Exceptional sensors, 4K video recording capabilities, and many different sensitivity ranges of up to 32,000 enable the camera to work well in any light environment. Don’t hesitate to use this camera to capture photos of moving targets, as well — the 425-point fast hybrid capture system enables very accurate tracking and subject detection, even at dawn or dusk.

7. Canon PowerShot SX540 HS 20.3MP Digital Camera

Best for: Photo Editing

Canon’s PowerShot SX540 digital camera is an excellent choice to practice your photo editing skills after snapping some great pictures. In part, that’s because it has a 64 GB memory card and a variety of valuable accessories.

More importantly, that memory card can easily plug into your favorite tablet or PC and let you start editing those photos immediately.

The camera additionally comes with image processing, image stabilization, and zoom framing assist features integrated into its software. Therefore, you can start the photo editing and cleanup process before putting your pictures on your PC in the first place.

With an 8-inch screen and 50x optical zoom, it’s a great camera for ensuring everything is perfect before you snap your photos. Built-in flash also lets you exert control over the light environment, capturing your subjects in excellent clarity and color.

8. Fujifilm Instax Mini 40 Instant Camera

Best for: Quick, Fun Photos

The Fujifilm Instax Mini 40 Instant Camera is an instant camera that’s budget-friendly and easy to use.

This camera is lightweight enough to bring to social gatherings, get-togethers with your friends, family celebrations, and anywhere else you like.

Plus, the camera can instantly print photos you snap, and the built-in one-touch selfie mode and selfie mirror practically demand that you use this for spontaneous or candid shots of yourself and your friends.

While it does only use proprietary INSTAX MINI instant film, it’s still an entertaining device and can quickly produce 2” x 3” photos. It also runs on two AA batteries, so giving it more juice to take more photos is never very difficult.

9. KODAK Mini Shot 3 Retro 4PASS 2-in-1 Instant Digital Camera

Best for: Photography Around Water

If you want to take fun pictures around water without worrying as a beginner, check out the Kodak Mini Shot 3 Retro 2-in-1 Instant Digital Camera and Photo Printer. As its name suggests, this is a digital camera and photo printer in the same device, and it’s pretty affordable, so if you drop it in the water, you won’t be out of pocket too much.

The photos are pretty cheap, but they do come out with excellent quality. The camera uses proprietary 4PASS technology, enabling flawless photos to print in seconds. They are always printed on layers of laminated color, so the photos themselves are protected against water and fingerprints.

Later, you can download the Kodak Photo Printer application and print your photos from anywhere. This is a standout travel and on-the-go photography device for beginners, hobbyists, and everyone in between.

10. Canon PowerShot SX70 20.3MP Digital Camera

Best for: Hobbyist Photography

The Canon PowerShot SX70 Digital Camera isn’t overly affordable or expensive, so it might be a good choice for semi-serious hobbyists looking to develop their picture-taking skills. With a minimum shutter speed of 1/2000 seconds and a maximum shutter speed of 15 seconds, you can get great-looking photos with some practice.

Several different exposure control types are available, and the camera benefits from a powerful 65x optical zoom function, letting you get close to your target subjects. If you decide to take video footage instead, rest assured that the camera can record in 4K video quality.

The EOS Utility Webcam Beta Software even allows you to turn your camera into a high-quality webcam — talk about convenience!

The Bottom Line

In the end, you should consider your budget, skill level, and how often you use your camera for beginners before spending any money. For example, the Fujifilm Instax Mini 40 Instant Camera might be the best choice if you are a newcomer to photography but don’t plan on developing your skills.

Something more robust, like the Panasonic LUMIX GH6, 25.2MP Mirrorless Micro Four Thirds Camera, could be a better pick if you are serious about photography.

One of the above cameras for beginners should be just what you’re looking for!


Bridget Reed is the Vice President of Owned Media & Content at GR0, an omnichannel digital marketing agency that has been serving a wealth of industries since 2020. Bridget's expertise is rooted in results-driven content production, with a passion for producing high-quality, informational articles that serve valuable insights to consumers. Through the years, Bridget has worked with industry thought-leaders spanning the business, health, wellness, parenting, and tech industries, and brings this breadth of experience directly into the content she produces. McClatchy’s newsrooms were not involved in the creation of this content. We may earn a commission if you make a purchase through one of our links.
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