Canon EOS 200D

The EOS 200D is Canon’s smallest DSLR, but don’t let this fool you. It performs good with video and stills offering quality 24.2MP photos and full HD 1080p/60fps movies. The resolution is excellent for publishing your photos on online galleries or having your work printed in large format. It even sports a touch-sensitive turning and tilting screen that’s great for vlogging – simply plug in an external microphone and you’re set. Other ports include HDMI C (Mini) and Mini-USB.

The large APS-C CMOS makes it easy to shoot with shallow depth of field, perfect for portraits. It will keep faces pin-sharp against a beautifully blurry background. In low light conditions, the 200D performs great thanks to a fast DIGIC 7 processor and native ISO25,600 (extended to ISO5,1200).

This tiny camera features Canon’s Dual Pixel CMOS AF that enables fast live view and video mode which, together with a 9-point autofocus system and 5 fps continuous shooting speed, is powerful enough to get you started. The built-in Wi-Fi with NFC and Bluetooth lets you browse, edit and share your photos and movies from mobile devices.

All lenses with EF or EF-S mounts will fit on the 200D. The Canon 200D Getting Started kit comes with 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 lens that offers a 28.8-88mm equivalent focal length range. It is a compact, lightweight, and versatile standard zoom lens with a minimum focus distance of only 25 cm.

Canon EOS 77D

Give your photography a boost with the Canon EOS 77D. This mid-level camera is similar to the 200D, featuring an APS-C sensor that offers 24MP image quality and full HD 1080p60 video that performs well with slow-motion footage. The 77D also has an optical viewfinder, a vlog-friendly swivel touchscreen, a DIGIC 7 image processor, ISO100-25,600 (extended to 51,200), built-in Wi-Fi and a built-in flash. Lenses with EF and EF-S mounts will fit.

You might argue that the 200D is more portable, but neither the dimensions nor the weight make a big difference: The 77D weighs 540g compared to the 200D’s 455g, and both cameras are slightly smaller than the average adult hand. On a single charge, the 200D takes 650 shots and the 77D 600 shots. Also, the 200D is available in black, white and silver, whereas the 77D is limited to black. But, all these differences are marginal.

What sets the 77D apart is its faster and more accurate autofocus with 45 points compared to the 200D’s 9 points. Continuous shooting is also faster at 6 fps compared to 4 fps, making the 77D just so much better at subject tracking in real time.

At a great price point, the 77D is the perfect intermediate camera for anyone starting out with photography. Add the versatile 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM kit lens for wide-angle to zoomed-in shots. For wide-angle shots, we recommend the EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM pancake lens, and you can’t go wrong with a 50mm prime.

Nikon D5600

The Nikon D5600 features a 24MP APC-C CMOS sensor, 1080p60 video, an EXPEED 4 image processor for clearer and more precise images, ISO100-25,600 (not extendable) for improved noise reduction, optical viewfinder, a vari-angle touchscreen, built-in flash that supports i-TTL, built-in Wi-Fi and a microphone port.

Specifications wise, the D5600 is similar to the 77D, yet its body is more like the tiny 200D – just even smaller and lighter (420g). The slim, ergonomic design has sufficient grip space for comfortable holding.

Unlike the 77D, the D5600 does not have a top-level LCD to control shooting parameters yet has a bigger rear LCD (3.2″ vs 3.0″) for image review and settings control. Also, note that the D5600 does not have NFC or Bluetooth.

In low light, the D5600 performs better with a broader range of light and dark details. It also excels in terms of battery life with 820 shots in a single charge of its EN-EL14a power pack compared to the 77D’s 600 shots.

Overall, the D5600 is a great creative option, particularly for using shallow depth of field. It takes Nikon F-mount lenses like 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6G AF-S ED VR DX kit lens that performs well with wide-angle to telephoto shots. Its 7.8x zoom is well-suited to a wide variety of subjects making it a great all-rounder. The Vibration Reduction system minimises the effects of camera shake for blur-free images and helps to ensure a steady viewfinder image.

Fujifilm X-T3

The Fujifilm X-T3 is an attractive mirrorless camera with an X mount lens system. It has a strong, sturdy build that feels good in your hands even though it is just over 100g lighter than the A7 III (discussed below). The X-T3 body weather-sealed (splash, dust and freeze proof) for outdoor use and is available in black or silver to match your style.

The X-T3 comes at a higher price point than the DSLRs above, but also premium features such as 26.1MP resolution and impressive 4K60 10-bit-internal recording that allows it to record 64 times more colour depth than the Sony A7 III – colours and skin tones just render better!

It also boasts an X-Processor 4 image processor with Quad CPU, convenient electronic viewfinder, tilting LCD touchscreen, intuitive menu, advanced 2.16m-point AF and ISO600-12,800 (expanded ISO80-51,200), continuous shooting up to 11fps, and Built-In Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. It also has a microphone input and headphone output.

Sony Alpha a7 III

For Sony E-mount lenses, the A7 III requires a greater financial investment. It features a 24.3MP CMOS sensor and 4K30 video (full HD up to 120fps) with 5-axis internal stabilisation for smoother footage, which is something that the X-T3 doesn’t have.

Like the X-T3, the Sony A7 III is weatherproof, features an electronic viewfinder, a tilting LCD touchscreen, built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, and microphone input and headphone output. Neither the A7 III nor the X-T3 has a built-in flash.

When it comes to dynamic range and ISO, the A7 III has the upper hand with much better AF: 693 phase-detection points compared to the X-T3’s 425 contrast detection areas. And even though the A7 III’s continuous shooting peaks at 10fps, the impressive ISO100-51,200 extends to an even better IS50-204,800) for less noise. The A7 III also has more room for customisation, allowing you to set up the buttons the way you like it.

For portraits, the sleek Sigma 56mm f/1.4 DC DN Contemporary is a mid-telephoto lens for Sony E that offers excellent sharpness and clarity even in difficult low-lighting conditions.