What Camera Should You Buy In 2022?

What Camera Should You Buy In 2022?

There hasn’t been a bad camera released in the last few years. But, still, some cameras are better than others. In this article, we will see what cameras are the best ones to pick up in 2022. Some are cheap, while others are expensive, some are made for fast shooting, and others capture stunning detail in the studio.

If you want to purchase a camera, there are plenty of great options available. Depending on what you shoot, your choice of camera will be different. If it’s sports, you will likely care more about the burst rate rather than the megapixel count. On the other hand, if you capture portraits and fashion, you are likely to pay attention to dynamic range and megapixel count. Importantly, this guide is aimed primarily at photographers. It includes both APS-C, full-frame, and medium format cameras.

Canon EOS R5

Opening the list is the already legendary Canon EOS R5. It has become the 5D Mark II of the mirrorless era. It is perhaps the best Canon camera to purchase, period. If you have been pondering about getting into the R5 system, and you can justify the upgrade, absolutely go for it. With a 45-megapixel resolution and an excellent EVF, this camera will be a great companion for stills imagery. Pair it with an RF lens, and you are unlikely to miss focus ever again, as Canons are known for their excellent autofocus, especially on RF lenses. It got initial hate over potential overheating issues, however, upon testing the camera, it has been revealed that overheating is an exception rather than the norm for the R5. In fact, the R5 sits in a genre of its own when it comes to bang for the buck: the competition simply can't keep up.

What I Like

  • Sensor
  • Bang for Buck
  • Excellent IBIS

What Could be Improved

  • Video capabilities

Sony a7 IV

This camera sits in a good spot for an all-around Sony full-frame mirrorless camera. It builds on the glory of the Sony a7 III, and it improves quite a lot over it. While the a7 III was glorified for its capabilities, photographers still wanted features such as real-time tracking, and full eye-AF, both for still and video. The Sony a7 IV has those features and even more. This camera features a fully articulating screen and a better EVF.

The Sony a7 IV is suited for photos with a 33-megapixel sensor, but not for anything fast-paced due to a relatively slow 10 fps burst mode, and even that only in compressed raw. Video shooters will be pleased though, as it does 4K/60, albeit with a 1.5x crop. The camera can do 10-bit video, H.265 with S-Cinetone, which is good news for video shooters. It is not a cinema camera though. If you primarily do video, look towards a video-specific camera. Nonetheless, if you want to get into the Sony system, or upgrade the a7 III, the a7 IV is a great choice in 2022. 

Nikon Z9

Late to the party, but nonetheless, the Nikon Z9 is awesome. This is the flagship Nikon camera that many users were expecting. It is really something extraordinary, as it combines high resolution with exceptional performance. Choosing to remove the physical shutter may be the secret ingredient, as it enabled the camera to do a never-seen-before 1/32000 shutter speed at 120 fps. At this point, I am left wondering if this is a video camera that also does stills. You better stock up on memory cards if you want to shoot those bursts. In fact, it also does 8K video at 60 fps, so you really have to buy a lot of expensive memory cards for it. Compared to the EOS R3, well, it's night and day. While it may have more AF points than the Z9, it doesn’t make the R3 better than this beast Nikon flagship. Bear in mind, that the rumored EOS R1 is yet to come out.

What I Like

  • Burst rate
  • Still image resolution
  • Video capabilities

What Could Be Improved

  • Autofocus 

Fujifilm X-H2S

The Fujifilm X-H2S is for those who want good video recording, fast burst rates, and small size. The Fujifilm X-H2S is.a camera made specifically for those of us who are conscious of size and weight. While it is a little expensive for what is essentially an APS-C camera, it still is capable of many things such as AI-driven AF. The camera is made to be the ultimate APS-C video/photo hybrid. It could be a good choice even if you are planning to use it only for stills or videos. Primarily, this camera is for existing Fujifilm users, as the price is hard to justify over a Canon or Sony full frame if you’re a new user. It is at a disadvantage when it comes to image quality. Up against the OM-1, the X-H2S is slower in shooting but better in giving more control over your video. Ultimately, the Fujifilm X-H2S is a great all-around camera, and knowing the impressive lens range that Fujifilm has, photographers won’t be disappointed with the options.

What I Liked

  • Burst rate
  • Video specs

What Could Be Improved

  • Hard to justify over a full frame for a new user
  • Cheaper options available

Hasselblad X2D 100C

The newly-released king of medium format cameras, the Hasselblad X2D beats even the H6D. That is all because the X2D is a camera that incorporates feedback from users of Hasselblad’s previous models. Recently, we reviewed the Hasselblad X2D. Long story short, the camera delivered. In detail, the review praised the X2D for incredible detail and dynamic range, as well as stunning color reproduction. The IBIS in the camera is also quite effective, while the 1TB internal SSD is something I wish all cameras had. This way, even if you forget your memory card at home, you can always shoot without a problem. This is a game-changer for many, and I suspect more and more cameras will start to implement this feature in their cameras. On the downside, the lack of GPS, as well as the price bite a little. GPS is useful for those who are out and about with their photography, while the $8,199 price tag will leave a void in a few wallets out there.

What I Liked

  • IBIS
  • 1TB internal SSD
  • Incredible resolution and image quality

What Could Be Improved

  • GPS
  • Price tag

Closing Thoughts

So, here are some of my top picks for cameras in 2022. Naturally, there will be other options, as purchasing a camera is quite specific to your needs. You may very well go with a 10-year-old Canon 5D Mark II, which will do everything you need. Others will only need an iPhone to do their photography, especially with the new iPhone 14 pro being released, and it is capable of capturing raw images at 48 megapixels with some pretty powerful AI! I'm sure a few people will be purchasing it and replacing their much heavier and larger cameras. 

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7 Comments
Tom Reichner's picture

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In my experience with cameras over the past 20 years, I find that cameras are similar to cars in one major way: It is far easier to accessorize a camera and to keep a camera functioning properly if it is a very widespread, common model of camera.

As great as BMWs are, my friend who bought one had nothing but regret. Why? The tires it took were not a standard size. The entry system did not use a common key blank that you can get spares for at any Home Depot. The repair shot down on the corner in our small town wouldn't service it because they didn't know how to service them. And even the most common of parts, such as headlights and fuel filters, had to be special ordered at great expense, relative to the much more common cars.

I bring up my friend's BMW because the same inconveniences and higher costs can be incurred when someone has a not-so-common camera model.

Want to find a great deal on a really high end underwater housing for a Leica, Hassleblad, or Pentax? Good freaking luck.

Want a very obscure, special niche lens like a Laowa 24mm Macro Probe in an Olympus mount? Good luck with that. You'll be stuck getting one in a Canon or Sony mount and having to use an adaptor (ugh that sucks).

Want Joe the local camera repair guy to replace a blown motherboard on a newfangled Fujifilm body? Good luck sourcing parts for that, even if Joe is willing to do the repair on a body he has probably never worked on before (which is unlikely).

My point is that cameras and lenses break down at an alarming rate, for those who use them rigorously in all kinds of adverse conditions. And many of us want to buy all sorts of accessories and lenses for our cameras that the original manufacturer doesn't make because what we want is for obscure niche usage.

So we are constantly in need of independent repair people, replacement parts, and 3rd party accessories. Those things are almost impossible to source for any but the most mainstream models of the most popular camera brands.

Things just go easier and cheaper for those who have the most common gear. And for most things in life, the path of least effort and least expense is the most efficient course to take.

.

Jan Steinman's picture

As an Olympus shooter for nearly five decades, I can only note that, when you follow the masses, the "m" is often silent.

I've had absolutely no trouble getting my gear maintained and serviced. And the Micro Four Thirds ecosystem is an embarrassment of riches.

I don't know what Tom has against adapters, but it's because µ4/3rds has such a tiny register distance that it can even mount esoteric things via adapter! Those with run-of-the-mill cameras often don't have that opportunity.

Try mounting the world's fastest zoom, or the world's fastest fisheye, or the world's smallest lens on your Canikony body. You can't. Because they only come in µ4/3rds mount.

But then, I'm sure we have totally opposite outlooks on life. I shoot Olympus. I use a Mac. (I use Terminal shell commands on a Mac!) I make biodiesel from restaurant waste for my diesel vehicles. I wear a mechanical, self-winding watch that will never need a battery.

So, there are outliers, and there are followers. I'm happy with my choices, but I realize others are uncomfortable on the bleeding edge.

As an outlier, I can see both sides, whereas followers simply explain why their way is best. There's much more to life than "least effort and least expense."

Tom Reichner's picture

Hey, Jan

Thanks for the reply!

I also use an Apple computer. Switched to iMacs in 2008 and my only regret is that I wish I'd done it sooner.

The Apple system works much easier for me than that clunky Windows interface ever did, or ever could. I do most things out of ease and convenience, and that is what drove my decision to go to Apple for my desktop computer needs. Just so much easier and more convenient than Windows - for me.

The issue I have with adaptors is that a lot of my photography relies very heavily on super great tracking autofocus for things like birds in full flight, running deer, etc.

I have found that when using adaptors to pair a lens from one manufacturer with a body of another manufacturer, that the autofocus speed and precision is not as rapid and perfect as it is when not using an adaptor. That's my main gripe with adaptors. If I shot only shot things that were more or less stationary, or that moved at normal (not rapid) speeds, then I don't think that adaptors would be an issue for me.

If you're able to use an inter-manufacturer adaptor, and shoot a bird that is in full flight (as opposed to landing or taking off), and that is close to you, so that the frame is nicely filled with the bird and the angle of the bird, relative to you, is changing rapidly, and shoot a burst or 10 to 15 shots, and have every frame in perfectly sharp focus, then I will change my mind about adaptors. But until inter-manufacturer adaptors are up to those kinds of challenges, I feel that it is best for me to stick to native mounts, or at least intra-manufacturer mounts (such as Canon EF to Canon RF).

Bjarne Solvik's picture

What’s wrong with Z9 autofocus? As I have understood from what people are saying it’s on pair with the other main players?

Thomas Davies's picture

I'd like to know this as well. I need to choose between a Canon R3 and the Nikon Z9. Autofocus is vital for my needs so I'm curious to find out what's wrong with it.

Bjarne Solvik's picture

He is not answering so I snuggest Google. Ken Rockwoll :

No modern way to select focus areas or scroll around zoomed images intelligently while we sight through the finder. The Z9 still forces us to fumble with endless clicks on an eight-way controller like a 1977 computer keyboard before the mouse was invented. Seriously? You can't set the Z9 to let you slide your finger on the rear LCD to move AF points or scroll around magnified images, and there are no magic optical thumbprint-reading encoders as on the Canon EOS R3 and 1DX III. Once you've used modern methods that react directly and immediately to however you move your finger, these idiotic clickers just don't cut it. (You can scroll around playback images on the rear LCD using your fingers, but you can't do that while looking through the finder — you're back to clicking the controller!