Nine top cameras for birders

Photo by Iam_Anupong/Shutterstock

Years ago, most birders were not carrying cameras into the field. Binoculars, of course. Spotting scopes, less common but still popular. But cameras? They were often too bulky and expensive for most birders’ liking. Now, however, digital camera tech is incredible, and prices are more affordable, to the point where lots and lots of birders are photographing birds out on the trail and in backyards.

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Below are nine cameras that we like. If possible, try out a few different models to find out which will work best for you.



Canon EOS 7D Mark II
Canon EOS 7D Mark II

This DSLR features a 65-point autofocus system (with compatible lenses), allowing photographers to track fast-moving objects.

Max frame rate: 10 fps

Canon | | Check the price on B&H!



Sony A9
Sony A9

A full-frame mirrorless camera with a 24.2- megapixel stacked CMOS sensor. It makes 60 AF/AE tracking calculations per second.

Max frame rate: 20 fps

Sony | | Check the price on B&H! 



Sony RX10 IV

An all-in-one compact with a 25x zoom lens. Approximately 20.1 megapixels and a phase-detection AF CMOS sensor.

Max frame rate: 24 fps

Sony | | Check the price on B&H!

Originally Published

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Matt Mendenhall

Matt Mendenhall

Matt Mendenhall is the editor of BirdWatching magazine and He joined the staff of BirdWatching (formerly Birder’s World) in 2000 and has worn many hats over the years: reporter, story wrangler, photo editor, managing editor, and now editor. Originally from Omaha, he lives with his wife and two daughters in Milwaukee and holds a Bachelor’s in journalism from Marquette University. You can reach Matt at (617) 706-9098 and [email protected].

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