Best Budget Camera For Portrait Photography

By | 27/10/2022

Whether you lot’re a professional or an amateur photographer, information technology’s probable y’all’ve researched the best camera for portraits.

After all, we all desire the best quality images of our subjects…

Virtually modern cameras here in 2022 are more than than capable of producing a bully photograph. Even smartphones with their fancy background blurring features can deliver impressive results.


Nikon D850

Fantastic image quality and performance packed into a durable, ergonomic body. Portrait photographers won’t be disappointed.

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Yet, if you really want to invest in producing the best possible images of your clients, loved ones, or any subject you lot choose to shoot, these are the cameras that should be on your wishlist.

Once y’all’ve got the camera, nosotros recommend investing in ane of these lenses for portrait photography too – after all, a photographic camera is only as good every bit the glass on the end of it!

Let’s take a closer look at the recommendations.

All-time Cameras for Portrait Photography in 2022

Paradigm Product Features
shk2-table__image Nikon D850
  • Extraordinary resolution
  • Outstanding battery performance
  • Tilting touchscreen
  • Outstanding dynamic range
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shk2-table__image Fujifilm GFX 50R
  • Superior sharpness & image quality
  • Dual retention bill of fare slots
  • Lightweight
  • Rugged atmospheric condition-sealed torso
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shk2-table__image Sony a7R IV
  • Stunning resolution
  • High speed continuous shooting
  • Fast Hybrid Autofocus
  • 15-stop3 dynamic range
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shk2-table__image Catechism 5D Mark IV
  • Superb epitome quality
  • 61-bespeak AF system
  • DIGIC six+ Epitome Processor
  • Touch screen LCD monitor
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Nikon D850

digital camera for portraits - best camera from Nikon with fast shutter speed, CMOS sensor and excellent lens options

Total-frame |
45.7MP |
Viewfinder Coverage:
100% |
3.two-inch tilt-angle touchscreen, 2359K dots |
153 points |
Max frame rate:
7fps (9fps with bombardment grip) |
4K UHD at 30p |
Weight: 915g (32.3 lb)


  • 45.7MP resolution
  • Incredible image quality & sharpness
  • Low noise
  • Fast and authentic AF
  • Outstanding battery operation


  • Built in WiFi can be sluggish
  • Only one carte slot takes SD

The two main factors that make for an excellent camera for portraits are quality and resolution – and the Nikon D850 more excels on both counts.

Featuring Nikon’southward first dorsum-side illuminated total-frame CMOS sensor, it packs a full 47.5 megapixels of image resolution rendering fine images that can be as big as a billboard or as pocket-sized as the screen on your phone.

Like the D810 before it, the Nikon D850 has the everyman native ISO of any DSLR or mirrorless photographic camera —ISO 64 (expandable down to ISO 32). That might not seem like much, but it tin actually make a noticeable deviation in dynamic range, most equalling that of some medium format cameras. (The full native ISO range is 64-12800.)

High-megapixel cameras often add in quite a bit of racket, merely the Nikon D850 has very low noise even at higher ISOs. At the aforementioned fourth dimension, the density of the pixels makes it so in that location’due south next to no moiré.

The D850‘s autofocus organisation is delightfully fast and accurate, even in near-nighttime situations, and the 153-pt autofocus arrangement is a cakewalk to utilize with the new AF joystick.

Add the 9 fps and the optional battery grip and the Nikon D850 becomes fast plenty to double equally a high-end sports camera.

While the Nikon D850’s live view is hard to beat, both in terms of AF and face recognition, the tilting touchscreen works much like an iPhone, is much brighter than on previous Nikons, and the refresh charge per unit is in real fourth dimension with no lag at all. Overall, it’s a existent pleasure to employ if you’re non a viewfinder lover.

Another feature that shines on the Nikon D850 is its fast processing speed, especially considering its high megapixel count. The Expeed5 processor has next to no lag and manages to add in lower noise and subtle tonal and textural details.

It too works surprisingly well in continuous shooting way (ix fps with the MB-D18 battery pack and EN-EL 18b/a Lithium-ion Battery or 7 fps without) and allows for total-frame 4K UHD movie recording.

Other features, such as outstanding battery performance (up to 1840 shots per charge!), focus shift, focus peaking, impressive video options (including wearisome-motion and time lapse), and full conditions sealing make this a peculiarly well-rounded professional camera.

It even has a silent shooting mode – although it tin’t rival the silence of mirrorless cameras, information technology’due south a handy feature for unimposing situations, such as with wedding, boudoir or glamour photography.

nikon digital camera for portraits with any lens options available

With the D850 you lot have a wide selection of lenses to choose from | © Jesse La Plante

Since the Nikon D850 uses the Nikon F mount, yous have an incredible selection of infrequent lenses to choose from, both from Nikkor and from tertiary-party lens makers. Just make sure to get a portrait lens that matches the quality of the D850 – lenses are more half of what makes an infrequent portrait.

Still, what stands out at the terminate of the day with portrait shooters is the Nikon D850’s incredible image quality and sharpness – see our review for more image samples.

In fact, when comparison the Nikon D850’s print quality to a medium format camera y’all tin tell the difference, but simply merely. Information technology’s a hard camera to beat for serious amateurs and professionals looking for a portrait camera that can practice information technology all.

Having all that dynamic range and resolution to play with as well comes in handy when converting images to black and white, and achieving a beautifully broad and smooth tonal range.

At simply under $3000 trunk-but, information technology’southward not cheap – only none of the all-time portrait photography cameras are. And considering the fact that the Nikon D850 is 1 of the most highly recommended professional portrait photography cameras on the market today, it’s definitely a worthy investment.


Fujifilm GFX 50R

best Fujifilm camera for portrait photography - best portrait cameras, medium format digital camera photography

43.8mm x 32.9mm CMOS sensor (Medium Format) |
51.4MP |
iii.69 million dots |
3.2-inch tilt-angle touchscreen, 2.36 million dots |
Max frame rate:
3fps |
Full HD at 30p |
Weight: 775g (27.three oz)


  • Rugged and weather condition sealed
  • Portable and calorie-free
  • Excellent sharpness & paradigm quality
  • High quality LCD and EVF


  • No epitome stabilization
  • Functioning can be slow

If you really love the look that a medium-format camera tin give you, but accept never been able to afford 1, the mirrorless Fujifilm GFX 50R combines the advantages of traditional medium-format sensors (similar image quality) with the rock-solid reliability of 35mm full-frame systems.

Considerably smaller than a traditional medium-format photographic camera, the Fujifilm GFX 50R is far more portable and affordable than a Stage Ane or Hasseblad.

In fact, if nosotros had to say but one affair nigh this item Fujifilm model information technology’d exist that information technology combines the medium-format feel of a moving picture camera with the portability and convenience of a DSLR camera – all meshed into one (much more) affordable package.

Information technology goes without maxim that the 51.4-megapixel sensor provides incredible resolution. The exceptional level of item is especially noticeable in print. The details are more realistic than standard full-frame cameras, the graduation and light fall-off smoother, and the colour naturally vivid in a way that’southward difficult to find elsewhere.

The images are merely beautiful, simply recollect that more detail may mean y’all’ll be spending more than fourth dimension retouching images – learning how to smooth peel in Photoshop, or even how to remove blemishes in Photoshop, may be necessary when all the intricate peel item is revealed in the epitome.

Another benefit of having a larger sensor is a much higher physical dynamic range and more than exceptional low light performance than standard full-frame sensors. Drop a RAW file into Lightroom or Capture One and you tin can really pull out the particular in these babies.

The GFX 50R‘s ISO functioning in the higher ranges is superior to whatever full-frame or APS-C camera. For normal images sizes, you won’t actually see any modify in image quality from ISO 50 all the way through to ISO 25,600!

At normal prototype sizes, image quality is unchanged from ISO l (Fifty) up to ISO 25,600 (H)!

At ISO 51,200 the but degradation at normal image sizes is slightly less color saturation and a little mottling.

ISO 102,400 is a little mottled, and still perfectly usable at these reasonable sizes.

One thing to note about using medium-format cameras for portrait photography is that they have an incredibly shallow depth of field. This is amazing for nigh portrait photography but can make focusing a fleck challenging. Information technology’due south very different from using a standard 35mm sensor or really any other kind of camera.

The autofocus of the Fujifilm GFX 50R (review) is better than that of traditional digital back medium-format cameras, just it’s nothing spectacular compared to full-frame cameras. But i doesn’t really purchase a medium-format camera to exist “snappy.”

On the applied side, the overall ergonomics of the GFX 50R are quite prissy; the grip feels really skillful in the paw and the buttons are all in easy-to-use positions. In full general, information technology’s much faster and more intuitive to use concrete buttons and knobs than getting into the menus on an LCD, and the Fujifilm GFX 50R doesn’t disappoint.

Speaking of LCDs, both the LCD screen and the electronic viewfinder on the 50R are loftier quality, and the hardware overall is seriously elevation-of-the-line. The battery performance, especially for a mirrorless camera, is besides excellent.

The Fujifilm GFX 50R comes with a Yard mountain, which makes Fujinon’s excellent GF line of lenses available to it. (Remember, it’southward important to take a high-quality lens to friction match the quality of the photographic camera – especially if you’re looking for exceptional bokeh.) The 50R doesn’t come with image stabilization, and so exist sure to invest in lenses that accept it.

Regarding lenses, if portability is a factor for you, I’d recommend investing in prime lenses rather than zooms. While perhaps the virtually compact photographic camera in the medium format world, the Fujifilm GFX 50R  still weighs more a big DSLR camera.

If you’ve never used a medium format camera before, I’d recommend trying it out outset. They operate quite a chip differently and the differences may not be for you. It’due south sort of similar using a sailboat instead of a motorboat – you have to really love the art of it.

Is the Fujifilm GFX 50R the best camera for portraits? If you’re looking for the beautiful aesthetic quality that’due south unique to medium-format cameras, accept the patience it takes to go the shots (remember it’s a sailboat, not a motorboat), and take the coin to spend, and so quite perhaps.

If you need fast autofocus or but like to be fast about things in general, then this probably isn’t the portrait photographic camera for you. If yous’re open to seeing the world in a different fashion, take it out for a spin. You might but autumn in love with it.


Sony Alpha a7R Iv

best camera for portraits with fast continuous shooting and shutter speed - best digital camera for portrait photography from sony

Full-frame Exmor R CMOS |
61MP |
Viewfinder: 5.7K dots |
iii-inch tilt-angle touchscreen, 2.14K dots |
Autofocus: 567 Phase detection + 425 Contrast points |
Max frame rate:
10fps |
4K at 30p |
Weight: 657g (1.45 lb)


  • State-of-the-art autofocus
  • Incredible 61MP resolution
  • Lightweight
  • Superb dynamic range
  • Excellent low low-cal functioning


  • Large file sizes
  • Complex menu organization

If you want a photographic camera for portraits and many other things besides, the Sony Alpha a7R IV is a fantastic option. It’s the lightest of all the portrait cameras on this list, has an incredibly loftier resolution, takes absolutely fantastic photos, and does just virtually everything well.

Like all contempo Sony mirrorless cameras, the a7R IV comes with a state-of-the-fine art autofocus arrangement that’s truly hard to beat, specially when compared to DSLR cameras.

The 567 stage-detection points combined with the 425 contrast points really blows everything else on this list (and about lists) out of the water. And so if your portrait photography has a lot of move in it, this may very well be the all-time photographic camera to become.

Like to shoot in continuous shooting fashion? The a7R IV has autofocus tracking that can track just about anything, be information technology the eye or face of a person or an fauna, or actually any other object also. (Skillful news for those who do pet portraits!)

The AF accuracy will drop a little when shooting in 8 or 10fps bursts, but information technology’s only really noticeable if you have fast-moving subjects like children racing around.

As far as image quality is concerned, it’south definitely on par with the Nikon D850. The 61-megapixel full-frame sensor yields a fantastic level of detail with a superb dynamic range – perfect for pulling out the shadow and highlight particular when editing portrait photography in Lightroom or your editor of choice.

In the world of ISO the Sony a7R Iv doesn’t disappoint. Information technology’s native ISO range is 100 through 32000, expandable 50 to 102400.

Like all Sony a7 cameras, the low-light shooting abilities of the Sony a7R Four are fantastic. Fifty-fifty with the increased resolution, the a7R IV keeps noise well under command.

Ergonomically, the Sony a7R Iv is much improved over previous models and is now quite comfy to work with. Information technology’south as well the almost compact camera on this listing and is mayhap the virtually portable loftier-resolution photographic camera on the market. It’s certainly more enjoyable to carry around than a DSLR photographic camera.

Other features include a respectable high-res viewfinder, excellent bombardment life (for a mirrorless camera), and a tilting touchscreen.

There’s as well a pixel-shift mode, which while not ideal for near portrait photography (your subject would need to remain admittedly all the same), is a fantastic selection for other applications and can boost your image’s resolution to a whopping 240 MP.

If you lot want a camera that will double as a video photographic camera, the a7R Iv’due south 4K video has stunning detail, specially when compared to its high-resolution mirrorless peers. You tin opt for footage that’s full sensor width or go for even more details with either a 1.half dozen or a 1.8x crop.

All output is 8-chip, which isn’t as good as it could be, but certainly isn’t a deal-billow, specially if your primary purpose is shooting portraits.

Since Sony’s been in the total-frame mirrorless photographic camera game longer than anyone else, they have a wide range of native lenses available. Zooms or prime, top-of-the-line M-main or something a bit less expensive, Sony has you covered in terms of loftier-quality portrait lenses. There’s even a decent assortment of Sony flashes to choose from.

Overall, the Sony a7R IV is i of the most capable pro cameras out at that place. Information technology’southward a comfortable and responsive photographic camera, does just nigh everything well (and most things fantastically), and it turns out amazing images no affair what you employ it for.

Is the Sony a7R 4 the best photographic camera for portraits for you? If you lot value portability, oft use continuous shooting, need the ultra-loftier-resolution, and/or want an all-around camera that excels at just about everything, and so yes!

If the price seems a little steep for you lot (but under $3500 camera body but), the previous generation Sony a7R 3 is now under $2500 and has more megapixels than the Catechism 5D Marking 4 that retails for near the same price.


Canon 5D Marker IV

best full-frame sensor Canon portrait photography - DSLR photography camera with CMOS sensor

Total-frame CMOS |
31.7MP |
Viewfinder Coverage:
100% |
3,two-inch, one.62 million dots |
61-points |
Max frame rate:
7 fps |
4K at 30p |
Weight: 890g (31.39 oz)


  • Superb color output
  • Great in low light
  • Excellent ergonomics and handling
  • Good dynamic range


  • Average battery life
  • Autofocus non the fastest

If you’re a Canon lover, don’t despair. Canon, of grade, has its high-resolution DSLR equivalent and that’s the Canon 5D Mark IV.

It’s not as high in megapixels every bit the rest of the cameras on this list, only it turns out impressively sharp images with exceptionally high-quality color output.

The Canon 5D Mark Iv (review) comes with a loftier-speed CMOS full-frame sensor and DIGIC half dozen+ image processor that’s uncommonly fast. Together they yield a native ISO range of 100–32000 (tin can exist extended to 50–102400), which is particularly impressive and makes it a great camera for shooting in low-calorie-free situations.

As far every bit the megapixel count is concerned, for many where 50MP is too much and 22MP no longer competitive, thirty MP hits the sweet spot. There’s plenty resolution for large prints and excellent cropping, while the paradigm files are not so huge they tie up your image processing speeds.

The Mark 4’s 61-point autofocus system is non quite every bit avant-garde as the Nikon D850’due south and certainly lags behind the Sony A7 serial, but it performs quite well overall – even in low-light. If you’re upgrading from the 5D Mark Iii, it’s a huge comeback.

One thing Canon excels at is color science and all of the images that come out of the Catechism 5D Mark IV have fantastic color rendering.

The video features of the Catechism 5D Marking IV are besides fairly impressive, with the power to produce picture palace-form 4K videos as fast as 30 frames per second.

As far as ergonomics are concerned, the Catechism 5D Mark Four beats out both the Sony a7R Four and Fujifilm GFX 50R in terms of both condolement and handle-power (though the Nikon D850 besides shines in this regard).

The buttons are nicely customizable and the camera overall is but a pleasure to work with. The bombardment life, on the other hand, is only boilerplate at around 500-600 shots in actual usage.

Other features include exceptional weather sealing, a bright, high-res touchscreen, 7 fps in continuous shooting manner, WiFi and NFC connectivity, GPS, and an intervalometer for time lapse shooting.

If you’re thinking of upgrading from the Canon 5D Mark 3, the Mark IV has a much improved dynamic range. Shadows are much cleaner and there’due south considerably less dissonance. In postal service-processing you tin boost those shadows several stops without adding any dissonance. It’due south definitely worth the upgrade, especially if you shoot portraits in low light conditions.

the 5d mark iv is a great camera for portraits and pairs well with a 50mm lens

Taken with the 5D Mark 4 paired with a 50mm f/ane.ii lens | © Jay Cassario

Of course, one of the best things well-nigh having a Canon DSLR is the fantastic wide range of lens options available. Arguably one of the best lens makers on the planet, y’all’ll be able to find just about whatsoever kind of lens you want at near whatsoever level of affordability.

At just nether $2500 the Canon 5D Marker IV is certainly one of the more affordable loftier-resolution cameras on the market, with only the previous generation Sony a7R Three giving it competition at that place. If you lot need something a scrap less expensive, the Canon EOS Insubordinate series offers a number of excellent options.

Yes in that location’s the newer Canon EOS mirrorless cameras including the R5 and R6, but the range of RF lenses is nonetheless express… non to mention very expensive.

Is the Catechism 5D Mark IV the all-time camera for portraits? If y’all’re a Canon user needing a high-resolution photographic camera, definitely! If you’re looking for something with ultra-loftier resolution and/or demand supremely fast autofocus then no, the other cameras on this list volition be better choices.

All-time Photographic camera for Portraits | Final Words

Whether y’all’re a photography enthusiast or a pro, finding the best camera for portraits can exist a challenging effort. Hopefully, this listing will give you some keys to finding the best high-resolution portrait camera that will work for y’all and your workflow.

Just remember that the all-time camera for portraits is the one that suits your particular mode and needs – so perhaps y’all’re interested in a DSLR with a high ISO range and high-resolution sensor, or perhaps your criteria is based around a mirrorless organisation with plenty of excellent lens options.

And, of course, it will come down to your budget as well – you can definitely shoot portraits with an entry-level APS-C sensor camera, or even a compact camera with a micro four thirds sensor, but if you’re looking for the peak cameras for portraits, you’ll need to invest in full frame or medium format.


Nikon D850

Fantastic paradigm quality and performance packed into a durable, ergonomic body. Portrait photographers won’t be disappointed.

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