The best Canon camera for beginner photographers

At the advent of digital photography, Canon was at the forefront especially with their compact IXUS range, offering at the time a whopping 2MP sensor. Since then digital photography has come on leaps and bounds to be the default choice with mirrorless cameras now taking over that mantle. 

There are a couple of ways to start out in photography, one suggesting the best camera is the one you have with you—an old cliche that rings true but a little simplistic. What it correctly implies though is that it’s not the camera which makes a great photographer but the ability of the person behind the lens to understand light, composition and the subject. 

However, you will only get so far with point and shoot cameras and won’t learn to understand how to manipulate the camera to give you results you want. Therefore the cameras listed here have the ability for manual control so you can learn to delve into it at your own pace. 

If you’re just starting out in photography and the Canon brand appeals to you, what’s the best camera to buy?

Canon has two entry level cameras that allow you to extend capabilities and go as manual as you like, one geared towards ease of use and size, the other for budding YouTubers with more flexibility.

Powershot G5 X Mark II

Powershot G5 X Mark II

The Powershot has its roots in those early IXUS models (called the Powershot in the US at the time) but moreso in name these days than construction. 

With the ability for full manual control, it can open up possibilities while at the same time remaining discreet and comfortable due to its fixed zoom lens. By sticking with one lens, beginner photographers are less likely to get caught up in changing out lenses to achieve a particular photo. An even better scenario would be if the lens wasn’t a zoom lens as this forced the photographer to think about how the photo is framed and needing to physically move closer or further away. 

Maximum aperture is F1.8-2.8 meaning it has a shallow depth of field giving a good range of background or foreground blur to draw in the subject. 

It will even allow you to shoot in raw so if you’re wanting to explore post production capabilities in Adobe’s Lightroom or equivalent, you can.

For authenticity the Powershot comes with a pop up digital viewfinder. Purists will always use the viewfinder but I personally don’t see the issue with using the 3” Touch Panel LCD screen if that helps you achieve the best result. It can be tilted up to 180 degrees with touch functions allowing you to select AF points, review images by swiping and more.

If you’re wanting to take photos of sports or moving subjects the Powershot allows 30fps with 0.5 seconds of pre-shooting as well as continuous shooting at 20fps (one shot) and 8.0fps (servo). 

The video capabilities are dip into the 4K arena with 30fps and full HD at 1080p. While this won’t win you any cinematic awards, it’s enough to capture everyday life events. Just be wary that shooting at 4K will start to eat into not only the battery life but the SD memory card as well. 

WIFI and Bluetooth come standard for transferring files across to other devices, handy for travel when you want to quickly share on social channels. 

The Powershot is a nice way to get into photography without lugging around a bigger lensed camera, allowing you to discreetly get on with shooting. If you’re conscious about budget

Price: $1249 AUD ($849 USD)

Visit Canon for more.

Canon EOS M50 Mark II

Canon EOS M50 Mark II

Bursting onto the scene a few years ago the EOS M50 was targeted at YouTubers and media creators wanting to get into content production without the overhead of professional grade gear. Keenly priced, it punched above its weight especially in the video department with 4K 25fps or full HD at 60fps. 

However, even though 4K is an option, the dual pixel autofocus is lost and it does crop into your subject limiting how much you can get into the frame. For regular shooting that’s not so much of a problem however if you’re doing selfie style vlogging it will become more difficult. However, there are ways around this by either buying a very wide lens or using a Viltrox EF-EOS M2 Speedbooster effectively reducing the crop in 4K by 0.71x.

With the Mark II, YouTubers can do scheduled live streaming directly from the camera to their YouTube channel (providing they meet the requirements of 1000 subscribers).

Whether you shoot in 4K or full HD at 60fps you will always get better results if the camera is paired with a quality lens. 

And that’s a huge advantage the M50 has over the Powershot—the ability to choose the right lens for your purpose. It can be bought with the body only allowing you a free choice of lenses, or with a kit lens. If you’re vlogging, live streaming, or if you just want stunning photos, go for one of Canon’s prime lenses like the EF-M 22mm f/2 STM. By using the Mount Adapter EF-EOS M, you can open up to a huge range of other wonderful Canon lenses.

The tilt screen is also touch enabled making it easier to take advantage of functions when articulated towards you when filming for example. 

Canon EOS M50 Mark II

The 24.1MP APS-C sized CMOS sensor will deliver results nobody could ever complain about especially at this price point. And without getting into nuance and detail, it’s enough for most hobby photographers, especially beginners. 

The M50 mkII really allows you to explore both photo and video without breaking the bank and also has the ability to extend its capability through interchangeable lenses and extra ports for video capabilities that you don’t find on simple point and shoot cameras. 

The Mark II is new and official prices in Australia haven’t been announced but the previous Mark I EOS M50 retailed for $889 so expect the new camera to be anywhere from $900-1000 AUD when it lands here given the minor price increase overseas.

Price (body only): est. $900-1000 AUD ($599 USD)

Visit Canon for more.

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