The popularity of digital single-lens reflex cameras on YouTube is remarkable. Vloggers will find these apps to be very useful, and their video quality is superb. Especially good for indoor use due to their low-light performance, they’re also highly adaptable. I have compiled this list of the 6 best DSLR cameras for YouTube vlogging because I understand this need.
Sensor Size: A Quick Guide
There are some differences between cameras here, but the majority of them relate to the sensor’s size. APS-C lenses are the most expensive, while Full-Frame lenses are the least expensive.
In terms of sensor size, Full-Frame is the largest. So, they can perform better in low light conditions, which includes indoors during the daytime, as well as achieving a more intense Bokeh effect – the beautiful blurry background – and they are able to capture a wider frame, like they were being zoomed.
This image shows the difference between APS-C and full-frame cameras in terms of the number of images they can capture at the same distance and with the same lens. Furthermore, the larger size makes sense given that they absorb more light.
Due to their superior low light performance and ability to use better lenses, they offer the best quality. A lot of people buy them because of their sharpness and colors.
Due to the use of wide-angle telephoto lenses, full-frames have the ability to suppress Perspective Distortion.
APS-C DSLRs are often used for YouTube recordings from home, and good compact cameras are commonly used for traveling and street vlogging. Full-frame cameras are typically reserved for vloggers who are serious about their work.
There are smaller sensors in APS-C cameras, but they’re still very good. The sensors on these cameras are much larger than those on compacts or camcorders.
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Things to Consider When Buying a DSLR Camera for YouTube Vlogging
Lenses play a crucial role in the quality of DSLRs.
Therefore, I strongly recommend not purchasing a DSLR starter kit when buying a DSLR. As for “kit lenses” I mean the ones that come with the camera bodies.
What I suggest is buying only the camera body and getting a good lens straight away. Long-term, you’ll save money.
You’ll likely want to replace the kit lens for a higher quality one eventually, since starter lens kits are usually low-quality.
However, if you know what you are looking for, you can find good, high-quality lenses for a similar price to the kit lens.
Because they are not zoomable, these lenses are cheaper. Neither you nor your viewers need to zoom as vloggers or YouTubers. The focal length of your recordings will always be fixed, so why do you need a zoom? Rather than spending money on a zoom lens, consider a prime lens.
Primus lenses also have the advantage of being faster. Simply put, they achieve a brighter, sharper image, at a lower cost. Hence, prime lenses are necessary for real-estate photography and vide blogging.
Type of Sensor
The type of sensor your camera uses, as well as the kind of video you want to record, determines how much resolution you can get.
On Full-frame cameras, it is recommended to use a 35mm lens, or a 24mm on APS-C cameras.
A wide-angle lens is necessary if you want to take a selfie while holding the camera. The dimensions of both types of sensors should be around 15mm.
The Canon 15mm prime lens does not exist, so you will need to use a zoom lens instead. Even so, APS-C cameras have affordable options.
So, here are my recommendations for Canon lenses for each sensor and purpose, in no particular order:
- The Canon EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM lens is recommended for wide-angle lenses (APS-C)
- Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM Lens for recording on a tripod at home (APS-C):
- This zoom lens is used both handheld and on a tripod. As a wide-angle lens (Full-frame), we recommend the Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM Lens.
- The following is the recommended lens for home recording while fixed to a tripod: Canon EF 35mm f/2 IS USM (Full-frame)
The camera body and starter lens kit is more expensive than buying the camera body separately. Then you should buy the camera body and get the recommended lens.
When you buy the starter lens kit, you do not think about the fact that you will need a better lens sooner rather than later. So if you want to save more money in the long run, why not buy it now and skip the starter lens kit?
Nevertheless, it’s important to keep in mind that a few DSLR cameras include the standard lens kit. Before ordering one, make sure there aren’t any additional charges.
Make Sure You Have Budget for a Microphone and Lighting
Don’t forget to bring a good microphone with you. Microphones that come with DSLRs are poor. A DSLR camera’s quality will be much higher if the sound is as good as well.
To record from home, you should also invest in an affordable lighting kit as well. A lack of good lighting will reduce your image quality.
Additionally, you might want to consider a tripod, either for capturing selfies or for using a home studio. You can find my recommendations right here for vlogging.
I am not sponsored by Canon (I wish I were). We primarily recommend Canon cameras because they offer simply the best cameras for video.
Among the best mirrorless cameras, Sony and Panasonic are usually the first names we think of.
In-body image stabilization is the only thing that Canon doesn’t offer, but Canon can still make up for it by supplying high-quality lenses that are also affordable.
How Effective Are DSLR Cameras For Vlogging?
Several years ago, this was true, but now the camera industry has changed.
Panasonic and Sony are developing cameras with the same sensor size as DSLRs, but they’re smaller, and their only drawback is their low battery duration.
Mirrorless cameras are also known as APS-C cameras. They remain the most common choice for vloggers today.
You’re interested in learning about the best DSLRs for YouTube vlogging, so I’m still going to review that here. I don’t want to get you confused, they’re still fantastic choices if you are primarily recording at home.
When your goal is to vlog your entire day, you run into trouble.
They’re too heavy to carry, so your arms will get tired if you carry one while capturing yourself the entire day.
This problem is solved by mirrorless cameras. Since they come with the same sensor sizes as DSLR cameras, they can also be used for indoor recording.
Compared to other types of cameras, mirrorless are light, which makes them easier to carry around.
That’s why I would suggest that people interested in taking their camera with them on a lot of trips get one with a mirrorless design. Our recommended mirrorless cameras for vlogging are listed on this other page.
How to choose a good DSLR for YouTube and vlogging?
When it comes to DSLRs, the first thing that springs to mind is the image quality.
But in reality, a lot of DSLR and mirrorless cameras produce similar quality images.
Content creators are more likely to stand out if they have the following features:
- Good autofocus
- External Mic port
In a normal situation, I’d include image stabilization, but because Canon rarely offers in-body stabilization, you must find a lens with stabilization (see above recommendations).
Good Autofocus (Dual-Pixel)
Autofocus with Dual-Pixel pixels is Canon’s signature feature because it’s highly reliable. The main reason why this brand is so great for video is because of this.
Autofocus systems that keep focusing on the wrong object and don’t correct themselves can be downright irritating.
If you want Dual-Pixel autofocus, look for a camera with this feature.
Flip screens are almost essential for content creators recording themselves. The benefit is that it doesn’t have to be a requirement for most people, but those who have gotten it have found it extremely helpful.
When your camera has a flip screen, you can verify that your recording is still going and that you are focused and in the frame.
In this way, you can see if everything went as planned rather than recording the entire video. It will save you a headache.
External Mic Input
A good image has many advantages, but what’s better than that? Excellent audio quality! It will be much easier to record good audio with a camera that has an external microphone input.
You can record with a lavalier or shotgun mic connected to your DSLR.
You can still use your smartphone to connect a mic to your camera, and then sync the audio and video afterward.
A DSLR is the big disadvantage of vlogging.
If you are planning to record most of the time at a fixed location (like at home), it doesn’t matter if the camera is set on a tripod.
But when taking the camera out with you, a heavy camera can be a pain.
Because of this, I prefer to recommend flip screen cameras to vloggers. Simply put, they’re more versatile.
Best DSLR Cameras Recommended for YouTube Vloggers
1. Canon EOS 5D Mark IV – The Professional YouTube DSLR Camera
A true king of DSLRs is the Canon EOS 5D, especially when it comes to video. It has 4k recording capabilities, which is the latest update.
The update took a long time – about 4 years – and I’m sure it was mainly due to the increase in popularity of Sony mirrorless cameras.
But that doesn’t matter now. We already received the necessary update for one of the best DSLR cameras currently available.
The autofocus and dynamic range on this camera are excellent for high-contrast scenes. The colors and sharpness are also excellent. As a result, it makes a great makeup and beauty product. The reason for its popularity with wedding photographers is that it delivers excellent image quality.
Higher ISOs usually result in some color degradation, but this camera simply doesn’t. It maintains sharpness at even high ISO settings.
No matter what light conditions you find yourself in, this camera will give you the best results – unless you’re in a cave, of course.
It’s not the lightest DSLR, so that’s one of its biggest downsides. The main issue for vloggers is an articulating screen. Youtubers may not be able to use this feature.
But keep in mind that this is a full-frame camera, so it’s really hard to accidentally wander out of the frame. It can still be annoying even for me to not have an articulating screen.
Therefore, the 5D Mark IV may have the highest quality you can get for Youtube, but it may not be the perfect one for your needs.
- Top video performance
- Great battery life
- Great autofocus
- Full-frame 4k recording
- Heavy (1.96lb)
- No flip screen
- No in-body stabilization
2. Canon EOS 90D – Best Video DSLR for Youtubers
In the case of viewing YouTube videos, a 5D Mark IV might be too much for the casual user. The screen doesn’t articulate either.
You should consider the EOS 90D as your primary camera to record your YouTube videos and even short films.
Here are some reasons why I prefer this one for video blogging:
For a price like this, the Canon EOS 90D has excellent autofocus.
The lack of a good lighting setup is one of the most common problems vloggers face. A camera that doesn’t perform well in these situations may, however, be acceptable if you have some knowledge of lighting. If the lighting conditions aren’t ideal, you can still use it.
Batteries are good in this device. Battery life for the Nikon D7200 should be slightly longer than this one. The downside is that it matches the 5D Mark IV and you save $2000.
You can get a better picture of what you’re getting for your money if you know the value you’re getting.
However, it isn’t perfect. In addition, it has no image stabilization.
The 90D has the same sensor and all the video features as the newer T7i and 77D, but they are significantly cheaper. A better alternative to the 90D, the 77D is geared toward filmmaking and comes at a lower price. It also boasts in-body image stabilization, which you won’t find in the 90D.
With these camera cousins, you can give up a higher price tag for a shorter battery life and a less-sharp autofocus when you plan to use your DSLR exclusively for home video.
Choosing the 77D instead will put less money out of pocket upfront for the body and for future lens upgrades since you can get cheaper lenses than the 77D that lack the stabilization.
- Made for video (mic jack, flip screen, hot shoe)
- Really good autofocus
- Good battery life
- Light for a DSLR
- No in-body stabilization
- There are many cheaper 4k cameras
3. Canon EOS 77D – Best DSLR for YouTube Vlogging
With a 24.2-megapixel resolution, this Canon DSLR camera was designed for photographers and videographers with advanced skills. With a lot of features in common with the Canon 80D, 77D, and T7i/800D, the Canon 77D is sometimes referred to as an intermediate model.
APS-C CMOS sensors are all present on the three cameras, along with articulated touchscreens and external microphone ports. Additionally, the X-T10 features an outstanding two-pixel autofocus system, which is one of the most effective autofocus systems for DSLR cameras.
Well, the 77D comes with a higher ISO capability for a much lower price than the 80D. Due to its advanced image processor, the 77D (and the T7i, as well) performs better than the 80D. In fact, this may be beneficial in shooting in extremely dark environments, where more ISO means a higher ISO value.
In addition to the 5-axis image stabilization feature in video mode, the Canon 77D makes using it handheld far more convenient than the Canon 80D. As a result, the T7i has several advantages over the T7.
A second disappointment with the 80D is that it does not offer 4k video recording. Although the 77D won’t allow you to shoot 4k footage, it might not be worth it to spend over $800 on the 80D as they offer the same quality and features.
The 77D and T7i, on the other hand, are nearly identical. What’s the advantage of the 77D over the 77T then, you may ask?”. Well, the 77D has some features that you might want to consider spending the extra money on.
A useful feature in this mode is that it counteracts light flickering when you’re shooting in a particularly bright setting.
Differences in design, however, are the most common. In the 77D, for example, there is an LCD screen on top of the camera for reviewing setting information. Additionally, it has a quick control dial that makes navigating the options easier
Most importantly, you will be able to buy cheaper lenses without optical image stabilization thanks to in-body stabilization.
Its body is more rugged than the T7i’s, which makes it the better choice for vlogging outdoor activities, since neither camera has a weather-sealing.
Compared to more sleek and pocketable mirrorless cameras, the 77D is quite bulky and heavy like most DSLRs.
- Made for video (stabilization, flip screen, mic jack and hot shoe)
- Effective dual-pixel autofocus
- Better sensor than the 80D
- Small and lightweight
- No 4k recording
- Not weather-sealed
4. Canon EOS T7i – Best DSLR for Vloggers
For quite a while now, YouTubers have been raving about Canon’s Rebel line. For those looking for their first DSLR for video, these are the most popular cameras.
Many YouTubers choose Rebels to be their first DSLR because of their good cinematic quality and video-friendly features. Another reason is that Canon offers a wide range of high-quality lenses for any type of Youtuber, and you can use them for a relatively low price thanks to Rebel cameras.
There are now a variety of features, including video autofocus, WiFi, NFC, more megapixels, and improved low-light performance on the Rebel lineup.
Furthermore, this T6i features a new sensor in comparison to the T6i. It will give you images that are similar to those of the expensive Canon EOS 80D, primarily because the sensor used in this camera is even more current.
Since compact and mirrorless cameras already offer 4k at this price point, this device will be able to record at least 1080p60/30, which is all it needs.
The battery life of this camera is also quite impressive at around 600 shots, and it has an articulating screen. Another reason it’s popular on YouTube is because of this feature.
For the price difference, it might still be better to purchase the T6i rather than this one. It will, however, provide you with better quality in low light since this sensor is new.
- Entry-level DSLR for video
- Made for video (flip screen, mic jack, hot shoe)
- Better sensor than the 80D
- Expensive for a camera for starters
- No 4k recording
- No in-body stabilization
5. Canon EOS Rebel T6i – Cheaper Alternative to the T7i
As Canon released new models of their REBEL cameras, their price jumped a lot, even though they were meant to be a low-cost alternative to Canon’s video DSLRs. This is why it’s a good idea to get an older Rebel camera. Even for YouTube beginners, the T6i is a decent camera.
In terms of video capability, the camera has all the basic features, but it is a more affordable version.
As a result, images will appear somewhat noisier at high ISO thanks to an older image-processing technology. Moreover, it has fewer focus points (45 vs. 19) and a lesser battery life (600 vs. 440 shots), plus it is missing Bluetooth and timelapse.
There are too many differences between these two versions for the hundred bucks you’ll save to be worth it, but it’s a viable alternative if you’re short on money.
Despite its many features, it is a flip screen vlogging camera with mic jack, hot shoe, 1080p30 recording, touchscreen, WiFi, and NFC.
- Good DSLR for starters
- Made for video (mic jack, flip screen, hot shoe)
- Cheaper price
- 1080p only up to 30 fps
- Low battery life for the price
- No 4k recording