CThere is a long debate between DSLR’s fans and mirrorless cameras’ enthusiasts. For many years people believed that if you want high-quality images you need a DSLR and if you want something compact and easy to use you get a mirrorless camera. Things changed in the last few years. Today, more and more professional photographers are switching to mirrorless cameras. The trends for 2019 are even more optimistic. Traditional DSLR brands like Nikon and Canon announce new technological advances in full-frame mirrorless cameras area. Prices are getting low, features are getting really cool, and mirrorless cameras seem to reinvent themselves. They catch up quickly where they lacked performance. The lists of best mirrorless cameras keep changing as innovations continue to appear at a frenetic pace.
In many aspects, DSRL and mirrorless cameras seem to have reached a draw. Still, for the following five features there’s no doubt that mirrorless cameras have significant advantages.
- Size and Weight
Small dimensions and reduced weight were always the major attractions of mirrorless cameras. A light camera with interchangeable lenses was the dream that fascinated professional photographers. Mirrorless cameras are of great use in landscape photography, street life photography, travel photography, and photojournalism. They come handy in situations where you don’t want to carry heavy gear and where every gram matters. On the other hand, DSLRs are becoming larger and heavier in order to keep up with all the innovative features they need to embody. Mirrorless cameras are also useful in situations where you don’t want to be noticed. They are very silent and you can eliminate even the shutter sound.
2019 comes with even more freedom of movement. Some mirrorless cameras weight under 200 g. They are compact, light, and friendly. Many of them have flip touchscreen, which you can rotate 180 degrees. That’s great news for vlogging, selfies, and over the shoulder perspectives.
- Autofocus and Manual Focus
There’s an entire story about how DSLR use phase detection autofocus and mirrorless cameras use slower contrast-detect autofocus. Today this is no longer true because mirrorless cameras have both systems and equal the speeds of DSLR. Moreover, the contrast detect autofocus is more accurate and you’ll never need to calibrate it.
Mirrorless cameras are also better at manual focus because they were built to help you with that. They have the focus peaking tool, which highlights the parts of the image that is sharp. You can even magnify the image to see if your subject is in focus.
- Video Quality
Mirrorless cameras offer high-resolution 4k movie recording. This is a feature almost every mirrorless camera has, be it entry-level or professional. The tops for best cameras for video are dominated by mirrorless cameras. The first DSLR in the top is somewhere after 5th place and costs three times more than the first mirrorless camera in the top. Besides, making a video with a light mirrorless camera, with a compact shape and flip touchscreen is a delight.
2019 comes with even higher resolutions for video. Sharp has announced the launching of an 8k Micro Four Thirds mirrorless camera, which will cost under 5, 000$. The camera will have in-body image stabilization, 5-inch swiveling touchscreen, and many other interesting features.
- Electronic Viewfinder
Although only the expensive mirrorless cameras have a viewfinder, having an electronic viewfinder is a big advantage. With an electronic viewfinder, you see the scene exactly as it will be in the final image. So while you change the settings (shutter speed, exposure, etc.) you see their impact on the picture in real-time. You’ll see exactly where you’ll have to sharpen image in post-processing. For a beginner, this can be a useful practical lesson. Moreover, you can also see a live histogram.
If you are an old user of DSLR optical viewfinder and prefer to see the real scene and not the resulting image, some mirrorless cameras offer an electronic viewfinder that simulates the optical viewfinder.
- Shutter Speed
Both DSLR and mirrorless cameras can shoot at fast shutter speeds. Still, mirrorless cameras are better at burst mode due to their simpler mechanisms. In addition, some of them may have an electronic shutter that allows you to take pictures quickly and without a sound. Just set how long the sensor will be exposed to light.
Another great feature in some mirrorless cameras (for example Fuji X100T) is the leaf shutter. It allows flash sync at all shutter speeds. This means you can do outstanding portraits at large apertures, with backlighting, and having a shallow depth of field.
Mirrorless cameras are excellent for beginners, but also for professional photographers. You can find a large variety of lenses at very good prices. If you choose Nikon, you can use their Mount Adapter FTZ to put your F-mount DSLR NIKKOR lenses on the Z series mirrorless cameras.
Big brands are taking a step forward in mirrorless cameras market. Seems like 2019 is a year of innovations and transformation in the technology of photography.