by Alex W.
In most areas of photography, the best camera for the job will be interchangeable with other genres. For example, the best camera for landscape photography may very well be a contender for the best astrophotography camera.
Street photography is a little different though.
The best street photography cameras have quite specific selling points that perfectly suit the job at hand. That's not to say you can't get great images with any camera, just that certain styles of cameras are well suited to the fast-paced nature of street photography.
In this article, we'll break down what to look for in a street photography camera and round up some of the best options on the market
While specific, the things to look for in a street photography camera are actually quite simple.
As a street photographer you want to be discrete and quiet to capture those natural, candid moments. You want to be able to shoot at a moment's notice and to be able to move around easily.
With that in mind, here's a few questions to ask yourself when buying a street photography camera:
The above questions pretty much rule out the vast majority of DSLR cameras due to their inherently bulky nature.
Of course, plenty of photographers managed to capture stunning street images before the days of top-quality mirrorless options, but now the mirrorless scene has caught up there really is little need to choose a DSLR when it comes to street photography.
That leaves two options: Interchangeable lens cameras or high-end compact cameras. We've rounded up a selection of both below.
With their gorgeous retro design and controls that are a throwback to analogue times, it's no surprise that many a street photographer plants their flag on the Fujifilm side of the fence.
The Fujifilm X-T4 isn't a huge upgrade on the X-T3, but it's an upgrade nonetheless.. It still has that retro aesthetic and feel and the famous film simulation modes, but now it adds in-body stabilization up to 6.5 stops and an improved autofocus system. It's also much improved if you want to shoot vlogs or video footage, so that's worth considering when making your choice.
As you would expect from one of the leading mirrorless manufacturers, the Fujifilm X-T4 offers excellent build quality, a bright and high-res EVF and full weather sealing.
As with all the Fujifilm X-series cameras, one of the major benefits is the excellent lens selection. Fujifilm love a fast prime lens, and that makes it a perfect fit for street photography. Strap one of their top prime lenses onto the X-T4 and you have a street photography beast!
Sony are well known for their class-leading full-frame mirrorless cameras, but their APS-C options shouldn't be ignored and, in the case of street photography, that extra portability can make a big difference.
The A6600 is slightly smaller and lighter than the Fujifilm X-T4 but still offers the impeccable image quality we've come to expect from Sony technology. It also features 5-axis in-body stabilization and a class-leading autofocus system.
This autofocus system comes into it's own when tracking subjects, making it a great choice for street photographers who like to focus (no pun intended) on the hustle and bustle of city life.
Excellent low light performance adds to the appeal, with a monumental ISO range of 100 to 102,400 available, although clearly image quality suffers at the top end.
Admittedly the LCD screen is rather low-res with just 921k dots, but the bright and vibrant EVF makes up for that. The menu system is also a complete mess, but once you've got the initial set up on point it's fairly intuitive to use.
It took a while for the DSLR behemoths to finally leap into the mirrorless world, but they've done so in style.
The Canon EOS M6 II packs an impressive 32.5 megapixel sensor into a camera weighing just over 400 grams, making it the smallest and lightest APS-C camera on this list. Autofocus performance and continuous shooting (up to 14fps) are both excellent as well.
There are a few drawbacks, though. The detachable EVF is a love it or hate it sort of feature but does help keep the size and weight down, while the lack of in-body stabilization is disappointing too. The Canon EOS-M lens selection is still somewhat limited as well, although that will grow in time.
Like the Canon EOS M6 II, the Nikon Z50 is the smaller, lighter and cheaper version of Nikon's flagship full-frame mirrorless cameras, but it doesn't skimp on the features.
It boasts excellent performance in autofocus, dynamic range and low light shooting and the kit lens, a 16-50mm pancake lens, is perfect for discrete street shooting. Sure, it's not the best lens for the occasion, but it's rare that a kit lens offers this level of portability and not instantly needing to buy a new lens makes this a great entry point to street photography.
The affordable price makes this a fantastic option, and really the only major downsides are the below-average battery life and slightly lower 20.9 MP resolution, although the latter point is unlikely to make much of a difference in the real world.
Micro Four Thirds cameras don't get half the appreciation they should do, with most photographers opting for the bigger sensors of APS-C or full-frame options. While understandable, it is a mistake to overlook some of these smaller sensor options.
The Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mk III is one of those that shouldn't be overlooked. It has class-leading in-body stabilization and fantastic image quality. As long as you aren't printing big or cropping heavily you're unlikely to be able to tell the difference between this and an equivalent APS-C image.
The retro design is just gorgeous as well, enhanced by sturdy build quality and full weather-sealing.
As you might expect it's also very portable, although given that it's slightly bigger and heavier than the Canon EOS M6 II we can't really shout about that too much.
What we can shout about is the lens selection. The Micro Four Thirds lens range is huge and offers something for everyone, whether it's Olympus, Panasonic or a third-party manufacturer. There's also the added advantage of these lenses often being much smaller and lighter than the APS-C or full-frame equivalents.
Fujifilm's classic retro-styling doesn't hold back when it comes to compact cameras either, and the X100V is up there with the best of them.
The 26.1 megapixel sensor is fantastic and, bundled with the 23mm f/2 lens, it makes for a gorgeous street photography package, especially with Fujifilm's film simulation modes to play with.
One of my favourite features is the innovative hybrid viewfinder which provide you with three great options. You can use the 3.69 million dot EVF or flick a switch and use the 0.52x magnification optical viewfinder, letting you see outside the shot while also providing framing lines for composition. Or you can use the electronic rangefinder to bring the EVF into the optical viewfinder.
Of course, the limitation of a fixed focal length will be a dealbreaker for some and the lack of in-body stabilization is disappointing, but overall this is a fantastic little compact camera.
The Sony RX100 range has long sat on the throne at the head of the compact camera table and, while expensive, the RX100 VII packs a real punch.
The Zeiss 24-200mm f/2.8 - 4.5 offers a lot of flexibility when it comes to framing and, as you would expect from Zeiss gear, is excellent quality. The camera itself is absolutely tiny and weighs in at just over 300g as well, making it one of the lightest options on this list.
Excellent autofocus, image stabilization and blazingly fast continuous shooting add to the package, although the infamous Sony menus are still a pain to navigate and can be quite fiddly on such a small piece of kit.
Designed to challenge the Sony RX100 range, the Canon Powershot G5X Mk II improves on the original in many ways but unfortunately still falls short of the RX100 VII in other areas.
The 24-120mm f/1.8 - 2.8 lens is bright and flexible, but the sensor doesn't quite resolve the same level of sharpness as the Sony and that can be an issue.
On the other hand, the handling of the camera is great. The inclusion of a mode dial and the customisable lens control ring makes shooting with it much more intuitive than most compact cameras while also keeping the size and weight at manageable levels.
It's good, but it's not perfect by any stretch.
If you want maximum performance with minimum footprint, the Ricoh GR III is your best street photography camera. It's the smallest and lightest option on our list but still manages to jam in a 24MP APS-C sensor delivering beautiful image quality.
Like the Fujifilm X100V, the 28mm f/2.8 lens will be a dealbreaker to some, but others will find it a rewarding challenge to be limited to a single focal length and the lens itself performs very well.
There are some drawbacks though. You'll have to pay extra for a viewfinder and the LCD screen is fixed rather than articulating, while the approximate 200-shot battery life is pretty poor by today's standards.
However, if you want something tiny that you can carry everywhere but don't want to skimp on image quality, there isn't a better camera out there.
Street photography is a very popular form of photography that involves capturing fleeting moments in public places. It can be quite challenging, but with the right equipment, you can take some amazing photos and improve your skills as a photographer.
One of the most important considerations when choosing the best camera for street photography is portability. Ideally, you want something that is lightweight, compact, and easy to carry around. Some excellent choices include mirrorless cameras and high-end DSLR models like the Nikon D850 or Canon EOS 5D Mark IV. Many photographers also prefer using point-and-shoot cameras due to their smaller size and ability to capture sharp images even in low light conditions.
When it comes to lenses, there are many different options available depending on the type of photography you want to do. For example, wide-angle lenses are great for capturing large groups of people or architecture, while telephoto lenses are ideal for candid shots or portraits. Prime lenses are also a good choice as they offer fast shutter speeds and low apertures, which is perfect for street photography.
One final consideration is your budget. Street photography cameras can range in price from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars depending on the features and quality you're looking for. If you're just starting out, it's probably best to go with something more affordable like a point-and-shoot camera or mirrorless model. However, if you're serious about becoming a street photographer, then investing in a high-end DSLR or compact system camera is a good idea.
If you are a street photographer, then your camera is one of the most important items that you need to carry with you at all times. But how do you go about carrying it? Do you simply sling it over your shoulder or what?
Well, there are actually quite a few different ways that you can choose to carry your camera if you want to be as comfortable and agile as possible while shooting on the street. Let's take a look at some options:
Some photographers prefer holding their cameras in their hands at all times, even when they aren't using them to capture images. While this allows for total freedom of movement and fast access whenever necessary, it can also be a bit tiring on your arms after a while.
One way to carry your camera without putting too much stress on your arms is by using a camera strap. If you are shooting with an SLR, then you can simply wear the strap around your neck and hold onto it whenever necessary. However, there are some disadvantages to this method as well, such as the fact that it can get in the way when you're trying to shoot quickly or if you have to hide it from view for any reason.
If you do want something more comfortable than a standard camera strap, then consider getting yourself one of the many different types of waist belts or slings that are available on the market. These allow you to distribute the weight of your camera more evenly around your body, making it much easier to carry for extended periods of time.
Another great option for carrying your camera gear is by using a backpack. This is probably the most comfortable way to go about it, as you can distribute the weight of your camera and other gear evenly across your back and shoulders. Plus, it leaves your arms free to move about as needed, which can be extremely helpful when you're trying to take photos quickly.
So, those are just a few of the different ways that you can choose to carry your camera gear when you're out on the street. Try out a few different methods and see which one works best for you.
There are many benefits to using a camera for street photography. One of the key advantages is that it allows you to capture very high-quality images of your subjects, which can help you create truly stunning and memorable photos.
Another benefit of using a camera is that it gives you more flexibility when composing your shots. Because you have more control over the settings on your camera, such as aperture and shutter speed, you can adjust the exposure and depth of field in any given scene to achieve the look and feel that you want.
Additionally, having a camera with you at all times allows you to take photos whenever an interesting situation arises. This means that you will never miss out on capturing important moments or special events, even if they happen unexpectedly.
When it comes to street photography, there are many different types of cameras that you can use. The type of camera you choose will depend on your budget and the features that you need. Here are some of the most common types:
These cameras are often small, lightweight, and easy to carry around with you. While they don't have a lot of advanced features, they are ideal for beginners or those who want to take quick snapshots on the go.
These cameras offer many of the same benefits as basic point-and-shoot models but with an added benefit - high image quality from larger sensors. They also tend to pack in more powerful features and offer better control over your settings.
If you want maximum image quality for your street photos, then a full-frame DSLR is the way to go. These cameras are more expensive than other models, but they offer the best performance overall in terms of focus speed, low light performance, and sharpness.
If money is no object and you want the absolute best image quality possible from a street photography camera, then medium format digital cameras might be right for you. They tend to have much larger sensors than even full frame DSLRs, as well as incredibly high resolution that can capture every detail on the streets with ease.
When choosing a camera for street photography, it is important to consider your budget and the features that you need. By understanding the different types of cameras on the market, you can make an informed decision about which camera is best suited to your needs.
If you're serious about street photography, then you know that having a dependable camera is essential. But keeping your camera in top condition isn't always easy, especially if you're constantly taking it out and about with you. Here are some expert tips for maintaining your camera so that it stays in good shape for years to come:
This may seem like an obvious tip, but it's one that's often overlooked. Your camera is constantly exposed to the elements when you're out on the street, so it's important to keep it clean and free of dirt and grime. Use a soft cloth to wipe down your camera body and lens after each use, and be sure to clean any other exposed parts, such as the viewfinder and flash.
When you're not using your camera, be sure to store it in a safe, dry place. If you're going to be out in the rain or snow, invest in a weather-resistant camera bag or case to keep your gear protected.
Your camera is a delicate piece of equipment, so handle it with care. Avoid dropping it or subjecting it to sudden movements or impact. When you're not using it, store it in a safe place where it won't be jostled around.
If you want your photos to look their best, then it's important to use high-quality lenses and accessories. Avoid cheap knockoffs and always stick with reputable brands, such as Canon or Nikon.
Your camera settings will change over time, so it's vital to regularly check your exposure and focus to ensure that they're still accurate. If necessary, make adjustments based on the shooting conditions or environment you are in at the moment. This will help you get better shots each time you pick up your camera!
Panasonic Lumix LX100 II Large Four Thirds 21.7 MP Multi Aspect Sensor 24-75mm Leica DC - Walmart, Etsy, eBay
Ricoh GR III Street Edition Metallic Gray Digital Camera (International Model) - Walmart, Etsy, eBay
Sony RX100 VII Premium Compact Camera with 1.0-type stacked CMOS sensor (DSCRX100M7) - Walmart, Etsy, Ebay
Nikon Z50 Compact Mirrorless Digital Camera with Flip Under Selfie/Vlogger LCD, Body - Walmart, Etsy, Ebay
Fujifilm X-Pro3 Mirrorless Digital Camera - Dura Silver (Body Only) - Walmart, Etsy, eBay
Fujifilm X-S10 Mirrorless Camera Body- Black, X-S10 Body- Black - Walmart, Etsy, Ebay
Canon Mirrorless Camera [EOS M6 Mark II](Body) for Vlogging|CMOS (APS-C) Sensor| Dual - Walmart, Etsy, eBay
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III Body Black - Walmart, Etsy, eBay
Leica M10 Digital Rangefinder Camera (Silver) - Walmart, Etsy, eBay
Canon PowerShot G5 X Mark II Digital Camera w/ 1 Inch Sensor, Wi-Fi & NFC Enabled, Black - Walmart, Etsy, Ebay
Ricoh GR III Digital Compact Camera, 24mp, 28mm F 2.8 Lens with Touch Screen LCD - Walmart, Etsy, eBay
Fujifilm X-T4 Mirrorless Camera Body - Black - Walmart, Etsy, eBay
Sony Alpha A6600 Mirrorless Camera - Walmart, Etsy, Ebay
Canon EOS M6 Mark II Mirrorless Camera for Vlogging + - Walmart, Etsy, eBay
Nikon Z50 Compact Mirrorless Digital Camera with Flip Under - Walmart, Etsy, Ebay
OLYMPUS OM-D E-M5 Mark III Body Silver - Walmart, Etsy, eBay
Fujifilm X100V Digital Camera - Silver - Walmart, Etsy, Ebay
Sony RX100 VII Shooting Grip Kit - Walmart, Etsy, Ebay
Canon PowerShot G5 X Mark II Digital Camera w/ 1 Inch - Walmart, Etsy, Ebay
Ricoh GR III Digital Compact Camera, 24mp, 28mm F 2.8 Lens - Walmart, Etsy, Ebay
In conclusion, if you're looking for a reliable street camera that can help you capture high-quality photos and videos in any environment, then look no further than the cameras listed above. Each of these cameras are designed to withstand all kinds of weather conditions and is perfect for capturing fast-moving objects - whether it be in a busy city or in the wilderness. So what are you waiting for? Head on over to one of these retailers and invest in your very own street camera today!
Thanks again for reading our guide on the best cameras for street photgraphy available today. We hope this article has helped you choose the right camera to get started with your photography hobby, or to enhance your existing skills. Good luck!
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About Alex W.
Alex is the owner and lead writer for Click and Learn Photography. An avid landscape, equine, and pet photographer living and working in the beautiful Lake District, UK, Alex has had his work featured in a number of high profile publications, including the Take a View Landscape Photographer of the Year, Outdoor Photographer of the Year, and Amateur Photographer Magazine.