Five of the Most Overrated Camera Features

Cameras are really good these days. Whether your choice is mirrorless, DSLR, full-frame, or APS-C, the quality of modern cameras is rather outstanding. But there are some features that are particularly overrated, even needless. Here are five of them.

If you're looking at buying a new camera, or upgrading to a better camera, or making the switch from one brand to another or, heaven forbid, going from DSLR to mirrorless, the place most people often start is the specs and features. Nowadays such lists can appear endless because these incredible little pieces of marvelous, modern technology are just being packed with more and more cool things. But are they all really that necessary? And will they make that much of a difference to your final shot?

In this short video, Mattias Burling runs us through five camera features that he thinks are overrated. What's important to note is that he doesn't say they aren't nice to have, nor that they shouldn't be included, just that they're somewhat over-hyped and their importance is overinflated by many camera makers, reviewers, and users. For me, I most agreed with his position on "in body image stabilization" (IBIS). Having never owned a camera with IBIS, I have to concur with him and say that it's never been a problem for me. My lenses, flashes, and tripods have always done the trick and I've never come away from a shoot feeling that anything would have been better if only I'd had IBIS. Would I like it if it magically became a free firmware update? Sure, but I'm not losing any sleep over not having it, nor is it high on my list of priorities for my next camera.

Give the video a look and let me know if you agree or disagree with the list, or even if you'd like to add any more to it. I'd love to hear from you in the comments below.

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44 Comments

Previous comments

I feel that this video (like most other “gear is overrated” videos) ignores the diversity in photography. Personally I agree that high resolution sensors are not needed, and when I looked at upgrading my D750 I didn’t buy the D850 because the higher resolution body would lead to a lot more data that I wouldn’t need. But for a wildlife photographer? That camera is basically a crop and full frame camera in a single body, it’s amazing!

The same can be said about most other features listed. If the video was named “Overrated camera features for [specific genre of photography]”, it would probably be spot on. But for all kinds of photography I can’t see how this adds any value.

Iain Stanley's picture

yeah I could see how IBIS might be great for wedding photography, in particular.

At least there wouldn't be much subject movement.

IBIS is actually one of the features I have found surprisingly useful in most kind of photography. When I bought a mirrorless this was a feature I didn't care too much about, but now I am so fond of it.

michaeljin's picture

The EVF is not the only benefit of removing the mirror in a camera.

BTW, this is all really rich coming from a guy using the Canon EOS R instead of a DSLR as his primary camera.

dale clark's picture

Silly subject matter IMO. Basically filler for clicks (it works, I read it). Take away the term camera and insert any object.

Iain Stanley's picture

But this is a website related to photography...?

Francisco B's picture

I don't have ibis, but doesnt it give you the equivalent of at least two extra stops of shutter speed? Thats hardly an overrated feature if you do a lot of handheld photography

For those who say IBIS is overrated, and I would also include in lens stabilization, have never tried handholding something like a 200-500mm or other extreme telephoto lens. Not everybody shoots portraits or similar events.

Iain Stanley's picture

Thanks for your comment. I own the Tamron 150-600mm and use it for surfing. It's an almighty whopper of a lens but I couldn't ever imagine handholding for more than a few minutes. It's just too heavy. I only ever use a monopod with it on the beach but there might be situations where you couldn't use a monopod. Though I'd probably look like Popeye at the end of it all!

Robert Teague's picture

I went mirrorless this year .... Nikon Z 7, and very happy I did.

Leon Hascal's picture

Umm... What? Is this satire?

of course, the biggest overrated is the camera itself, why the hell would you buy one?

What a cockwomble.