Here it is, as promised, the wildlife edition of the best cameras you can buy in 2021.
I think one of the most important differences between wildlife and landscape photography is recognizing what specifications are most important.
While autofocus and burst rate are life or death for a wildlife camera, they don’t matter much for a landscape camera.
Thus, the list of best cameras for wildlife will be different, although you’ll notice some repeats from the landscape edition. That’s a good thing though, we are beginning to see powerhouse hybrid cameras, like the Canon R5 and a1. They do everything from wildlife to landscape to professional video. And, that’s great for us consumers because I want the next camera I buy to do it all.
But, you’ll notice some specialized cameras on this list too, ones that you might not touch for landscapes, but compete at the top in the wildlife realm.
So, without further ado, enjoy.
What’s most important for a ‘wildlife’ camera?
Autofocus is king for wildlife. Fast moving, erratic, unpredictable subjects mean you need an elite autofocus system. Because after all, if you don’t have focus, well what do you have…right?!
Burst Rate & Buffer
In line with autofocus, when animals or birds are moving quickly, firing off enough shots in a short period of time can mean you either get the shot or you don’t. And not only should a camera be able to shoot fast, but it should be able to clear its buffer, and allow you to still shoot while clearing.
Sensor Size & Resolution
Sensor size and resolution are important, but in different ways versus a landscape camera. A higher resolution sensor is great because you have extra cropping ability. Taking a shot at 400mm with a 60MP sensor is great because you can crop into a 600mm view. But, a smaller sensor can also be nice because of the noise performance. A lower resolution full-frame sensor should be cleaner at higher ISOs than high resolution counterparts.
Ergonomics & Build
This is important, just like with landscapes. A camera should feel great in the hands, be easy to use and shoot with, and have great build. Things like a quality weather sealing are very important when shooting in harsh conditions…which can happen a lot as a landscape photographer.
You could list a whole other slew of features, but this is what’s most important in my experience.
These are the best full-frame cameras for landscape photography that you can buy today: