Best mirrorless camera under $500


Best mirrorless camera under $500: thinking about stepping into the world of mirrorless cameras, but worried about staying under a $500 budget? Unlike bulky DSLRs, mirrorless cameras offer a powerful and portable option for capturing high-quality photos and videos.

However, navigating the vast selection of sub-$500 mirrorless cameras can be tricky. This guide will simplify your search by explaining the key features to consider in this price range.

best mirrorless camera under $500

Affordable Mirrorless Camera Options

The world of photography can be daunting, when it comes to choosing the right camera. but navigating the vast selection, particularly under a $500 budget.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G7

  • 16 Megapixel Live MOS Sensor (Micro Four Thirds): This captures high-resolution images with good low-light performance.
  • Micro Four Thirds Lens Mount: Offers a wide variety of interchangeable lenses.
  • 4K Video Recording: Capture stunning high-resolution videos.
  • 4K Photo Modes: Extract high-quality still images from 4K video footage.
  • 49-Point Autofocus System: Ensures fast and accurate focus for sharp photos and videos.
  • Budget-Friendly Price: $497


  • Quiet Operation: The electronic shutter allows for silent shooting, ideal for situations where noise needs to be minimal.
  • Intuitive Controls: Dedicated control dials provide quick and easy access to important settings.
  • Sharp Viewfinder: The high-resolution electronic viewfinder offers a clear and accurate representation of the scene you’re capturing.


  • Limited 4K Photo Performance: While there’s a 4K Photo mode, it may experience some lag, especially in early firmware versions.
  • Plastic Construction: The camera body is made of plastic, which some users might find less durable compared to metal bodies.

Canon EOS 2000D 

  • High-Resolution Photos (24.1MP APS-C Sensor): Capture sharp images with plenty of detail for cropping and printing.
  • Compatible with Canon EF-S Lenses: Wide selection of lenses available for different shooting styles.
  • Fast Autofocus (9-point AF system): Get sharp photos quickly and easily.
  • Full HD Video Recording: Create high-quality videos for everyday use.
  • Budget-Friendly Price: $399


  • Beginner-Friendly: Simple controls and intuitive menus make it easy to learn and use.
  • Excellent Image Quality: The APS-C sensor delivers sharp photos with good low-light performance.
  • Versatile Lens System: Wide variety of Canon EF-S lenses available to explore different photography styles.


  • Limited Viewing Options: The fixed LCD screen can’t be tilted or adjusted for different shooting angles and lacks touchscreen functionality.
  • Limited Buffer for RAW Shooting: The camera might not be ideal for rapid bursts of shots in RAW format due to the smaller RAW buffer.

Olympus Tough TG-6


  • Compact with Big Zoom (12MP 1/2.3″ sensor, 4x optical zoom): Capture sharp photos and videos despite the camera’s small size. The zoom lens offers a versatile range, equivalent to 25-100mm on a full-frame camera.
  • Built to Endure (Waterproof, shockproof, crushproof, freezeproof): Take this camera anywhere without worrying about the elements.
  • High-Resolution Videos (4K video): Shoot stunning, high-resolution videos for capturing memories in detail.
  • Adventure-Ready Price: $499


  • Built to Take a Beating: This camera’s incredibly tough construction shrugs off water, shocks, crushes, and even freezing temperatures, making it ideal for adventure photography.
  • Outshines the Competition: This camera boasts better specs than other tough compacts, offering superior image quality and features.
  • Fast Lens for Low Light: The bright f/2 lens lets in more light, allowing you to capture clear photos and videos even in low-light conditions.


  • Small Sensor Size: The 1/2.3-inch sensor may not perform as well in low light or produce the same image quality as larger sensors found in higher-end cameras. This can affect things like image sharpness and detail, especially in low-light situations.

Panasonic Lumix TZ100/ZS100

  • Powerful Zoom and High-Resolution (20.1MP 1-inch sensor, 10x optical zoom): Capture stunning photos and videos with exceptional detail, even at a distance. The zoom lens offers a versatile range, equivalent to 25-250mm on a full-frame camera, letting you get close to faraway subjects.
  • Sharp Photos and Steady Videos (5-axis image stabilization): This camera’s image stabilization system helps reduce blur caused by camera shake, ensuring crisp photos and smooth videos.
  • 4K Video Recording: Capture high-resolution videos for memories that come alive in stunning detail.
  • Price Meets Performance: $597


  • Versatile Travel Companion (Useful do-it-all zoom lens, Small and pocketable): This camera’s long zoom lens lets you capture a variety of shots, from wide landscapes to close-up details, all in a compact size that easily fits in your pocket, making it ideal for travel.
  • Sharp Photos on the Go (5-axis image stabilization): The built-in image stabilization helps counteract camera shake, ensuring you get clear photos and videos even when shooting handheld.


  • Limited Viewfinder (Small electronic viewfinder): The electronic viewfinder might be on the smaller side, which some users may find less comfortable for composing shots compared to a larger viewfinder or a tilting LCD screen.

Panasonic Lumix GX80

  • Sharp Details Without Moiré (16MP Four Thirds sensor, no optical low-pass filter): Capture crisp, high-resolution images with potentially increased detail thanks to the lack of a low-pass filter.
  • Wide Lens Selection (Micro Four Thirds lens mount): Choose from a vast array of interchangeable lenses to suit your photography needs.
  • Unshakeable Photos and Videos (Dual IS: 5-axis in-body + 2-axis in-lens): The camera’s combined image stabilization system minimizes blur caused by camera shake, ensuring sharp photos and smooth videos.
  • High-Resolution Recording (4K video recording and 4K Photo mode): Capture stunning 4K videos or extract high-quality still images from 4K footage.
  • High-Resolution Viewfinder (2.76-million-dot equivalent EVF): Compose your shots clearly with a detailed electronic viewfinder.
  • Attractive Price Point: $549


  • Comfortable Shooting (Great ergonomics and handling): The camera design is comfortable to hold and use, allowing for extended shooting sessions.
  • Creative Video Options (Clever 4K burst features): This camera offers unique features for capturing high-resolution video in creative ways.
  • More Affordable Choice (Price has come down): This camera has become a more attractive option due to a recent price decrease.


  • Limited Audio Control (No mic socket for video): The camera lacks a microphone jack for attaching an external microphone, which might be a drawback for videographers who want more control over audio quality.

Panasonic Lumix TZ90 / ZS70

  • Big Zoom in a Small Body (20.3MP 1/2.3-inch sensor, 30x optical zoom): Capture sharp photos and videos of distant subjects despite the camera’s compact size. The zoom range is equivalent to 24-720mm on a full-frame camera, giving you incredible versatility.
  • High-Resolution Memories (4K video, 4K PHOTO): Shoot stunning 4K videos or grab high-quality still images from 4K footage for detailed memories.
  • Flexible Viewing and Control (3-inch, 1040K-dot touchscreen LCD, 180-degree tiltability): The large, high-resolution touchscreen display allows for easy composition, playback, and control, while the 180-degree tilt provides comfortable shooting from various angles.
  • Value-Packed Travel Companion Price: $397


  • Superlative Zoom Power (Excellent zoom range): The 30x optical zoom allows you to capture close-up details of faraway subjects, making it ideal for travel and wildlife photography.
  • Intuitive Control (Useful touchscreen): The touchscreen LCD provides a familiar and convenient way to compose shots, navigate menus, and playback images.


  • Potential for Less Low-Light Performance (Smaller sensor than TZ100): The smaller sensor size compared to the TZ100 might result in slightly more image noise in low-light conditions. This can affect image quality, particularly in areas like sharpness and detail.


Will a sub-$500 mirrorless camera take good photos in low light?

Low-light performance is generally better with larger sensors. While some sub-$500 cameras can handle low light decently, they might not be ideal for very dark environments.

Can I record high-quality videos with a sub-$500 mirrorless camera?

Many sub-$500 mirrorless cameras offer 4K video recording, but features like frame rates and codecs might be limited compared to higher-end models.

What are the best mirrorless cameras under $500?

There are several strong contenders, but some popular choices include the Canon EOS M50 Mark II, Sony a5100, and Panasonic Lumix GX800. The best option depends on your specific needs and priorities.

What features should I look for in a sub-$500 mirrorless camera?

Focus on image quality (sensor size and megapixels), autofocus performance, video capabilities, and ease of use. Image stabilization and weather sealing can also be valuable features in this price range.

Is a mirrorless camera better than a DSLR for beginners?

Mirrorless cameras tend to be lighter, more compact, and offer features like electronic viewfinders for easier framing. DSLRs might offer better battery life and potentially a wider lens selection, but mirrorless cameras are generally a good choice for beginners.

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In the world of photography, finding the perfect mirrorless camera under $500 can seem like finding a gem in a vast sea of ​​options. But fear not, as we’ve carefully curated a list of top contenders to make your search easier.

This post has helped you navigate the path of choice and find the ideal mirrorless camera that fits your budget and needs. Thank you for entrusting us with your search and happy shooting.


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