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The best cameras for wedding photography in 2021: shooting the big day

Included in this guide:

Best cameras for wedding photography
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The best cameras for wedding photography will need to have fast autofocus you, excellent low light performance and ideally, have a silent shooting mode. While most wedding photographers will choose to shoot full-frame, if you're just starting out it might not be financially viable so we have included some excellent crop sensor cameras too.  

Capturing someone's big day is not a job for the faint-hearted and probably not recommended as your first intro to photography. Weddings are high-pressure, action-packed days where anything could go wrong so you really need to bring your A-game. There are so many moments throughout the day that you won't get a chance to shoot again so you need to get it right first time and having the right kit makes it so much easier. If you're buying new, make sure you get to grips with all the settings, shortcuts, buttons and dials before the big day so you don't miss anything important.  

Whether you're just starting out in wedding photography or looking to upgrade your current setup, our list of the best cameras for wedding photography includes both APS-C and full-frame cameras that we believe are perfect for the job. Realistically, entry-level cameras aren't really suitable to shoot weddings as they often don't have the resolution, fast burst modes or handy features like eye and face AF needed to capture someone's special day. 

To make the list easy to navigate we've split the guide into three sections: starting out, upgrading and professional. Chances are if you make most of your income from wedding photography you'll want to jump right in at the pro-end with cameras offering a high megapixel count, advanced features such as face and eye AF as well as phase-detect autofocus, 4K video capabilities and fast burst modes. 

Starting out

(Image credit: Nikon)

Nikon's entry-level full frame Nikon Z camera is incredible value and great camera too

Specifications
Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: Full frame CMOS
Megapixels: 24.3MP
Lens mount: Nikon Z
Monitor: 3.2-inch tilting touchscreen, 1,040k dots
Continuous shooting speed: 4.5fps
Viewfinder: EVF, 3,690k dots, 100% coverage, 0.8x magnification
Max video resolution: 4K UHD at 30p
User level: Enthusiast
Reasons to buy
+Good price for full-frame+Twin card slots
Reasons to avoid
-Only 4.5fps burst-Cropped 4K video

If you thought your first camera for wedding photography would have to have an APS-C Sensor, think again. Nikon's entry-level full-frame DSLR is incredible value for what you get and the larger sensor means it performs better in low light. It has a continuous shooting speed of 4.5fps which isn't the fastest, but for most wedding scenarios that will be more than enough. It has a 24.3MP CMOS sensor that not only captures beautiful, color-accurate photos but it can also shoot 4K video. One of the biggest criticisms (and reasons wedding photographers didn't invest) in the Nikon Z6 and Z7 is the fact they only had one card slot but Nikon listened and the Z5 has dual UHS-II so you can back up your images onto the second card. ~The 273-point hybrid autofocus system is fast and accurate and feature such as eye AF will make sure your portraits are always in focus. It's lightweight, weather-sealed, has USB-C charging capabilities and an ISO range of 100-51,200 so even when shooting at higher ISO's, your images will still look clean. It's compatible with the Nikon FTZ adapter which means you can use the huge range of Nikon F mount lenses available, either brand new or second hand if your budget is tight.

(Image credit: Canon )

A very capable all-rounder that's great as your first wedding camera

Specifications
Type: DSLR
Sensor: APS-C
Megapixels: 32.5MP
Lens mount: Canon EF
Screen: 3-inch fully articulating touchscreen, 1,040,000 dots
Viewfinder: Optical
Max burst speed: 10fps
Max video resolution: 4K
Weight: 701g
Reasons to buy
+Polished touchscreen interface+Un-cropped 4K video
Reasons to avoid
-Limited buffer capacity-Single card slot

The EOS 90D sits at the top of Canon’s APS-C enthusiast range of DSLRs and features an all-new 32.5MP sensor, which sees it edge out many APS-C rivals in the resolutions stakes. That's just a small part of the story though, as there's lots to like elsewhere. This includes the excellent vari-angle touchscreen with Canon's polished Dual Pixel AF, which makes shooting from awkward angles a dream, while the handling nicely sorted. Buttons are nicely spaced, there's a really handy AF joystick and there's a decent sized handgrip - really handy if you're going to be shooting a wedding all day. The EOS 90D is also weather-sealed and while it feels a little plasticky in places, is constructed from a mix of aluminium alloy and polycarbonate resin (with glass fibre). The buffer could be better and it's a shame there's not an extra card slot (useful for backing up those precious shots), but otherwise the EOS 90D is a very capable option for those looking for their first wedding camera. 

(Image credit: Fujifilm)

Fujifilm's compact mirrorless marvel packs a serious punch

Specifications
Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: APS-C
Megapixels: 26.1MP
Lens mount: Fujifilm X-mount
Screen: 3-inch vari-angle touchscreen, 1,040,000 dots
Viewfinder: Electronic
Max burst speed: 20fps
Max video resolution: 4K
Weight: 465g
Reasons to buy
+In-body image stabilisation+100% phase-detection AF coverage
Reasons to avoid
-No 4K 60p (unlike the X-T4)-IBIS less effective for video

The X-S10 is a bit of a deviation for Fujifilm. Sharing many of the core features as the similarly priced X-T30, the biggest difference is the design. For starters there’s a more pronounced handgrip than we’re used to seeing with other X Series cameras, while the top-plate has been streamlined with a less intimidating set of controls. New users will certainly find this more intuitive, while more experienced users will still enjoy a decent amount of body-mounted controls and customisation. The build quality is also excellent , while the vari-angle display that can allow the screen to fold in on itself is a nice touch. The X-S10 uses Fujifilm's excellent 26MP sensor, delivering images with excellent detail and lovely colour. Then there's the advanced 425-point system and excellent 6-stop in-body image stabilisation system, while Fujifilm’s steadily built up and extensive range of lenses for the X Series that are perfect for weddings. 

(Image credit: Sony)

Not the latest in the range but ideal if you want a full-frame camera on a budget

Specifications
Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: Full frame
Megapixels: 24.2MP
Lens mount: Sony FE
Screen: 3-inch tilting screen, 1,228,000 dots
Viewfinder: Electronic
Max burst speed: 5fps
Max video resolution: Full HD
Weight: 556g
Reasons to buy
+Full frame sensor+Value for money
Reasons to avoid
-Full HD, not 4K video-Modest 5fps shooting

The Alpha A7 II is starting to show it's age and has since been replaced by one of our favourite mirrorless cameras, the Alpha A7 III. So why's it still on the list? Simple answer is the price. This is one of the cheapest ways to get a full-frame camera other than buying used, bringing with it a number of benefits that the larger sensor offers. Expect very good image quality then, while the AF system is fast and accurate as well. There's also a dependable in-camera image stabilisation system and in the hand, the Alpha A7 II has a very durable build quality. There are some compromises though - it can only shoot up to Full HD, not 4K, while the burst shooting speed of 5fps looks a little underwhelming these days. Get past that and you have a great wedding camera for the price. 

(Image credit: Nikon)

Despite its age, the Nikon D750 remains a capable all-round DSLR

Specifications
Type: DSLR
Sensor: Full frame
Megapixels: 24.2MP
Lens mount: Nikon FX
Screen: 3.2-inch tilting screen, 1,228,000 dots
Viewfinder: Optical
Max burst speed: 6.5fps
Max video resolution: Full HD
Weight: 750g
Reasons to buy
+Dual card slots+Refined handling
Reasons to avoid
-Full HD, not 4K video-Slow live view AF

The Nikon D750 might be six years old but it's still an excellent camera - especially in low light. It was replaced by the Nikon D780 in January 2020 which meant the D750 benefitted from a significant drop in price. While the D750 doesn't have a lot of the mirrorless features we see in cameras today, it does offer a 24.3MP back-illuminated CMOS sensor which is what makes it so good in low light. Its size and handling are also perfect, it's not too big and bulky but your fingers feel like they have enough room between the grip and the barrel of the lens when shooting. Like all of the best cameras for wedding photography, it has dual card slots so you can decide if you want to use the second slot as an overflow, back-up or you could separate your file formats in Jpeg's and Raw's. One of the downsides of the Nikon D750 is that it doesn't shoot 4K video but to be honest, if you're looking for a camera for wedding photography chances are you won't need it for video. Shooting photos for a wedding can be challenging enough without also have to shoot video - leave that to someone else who has one of the best cameras for video.

Upgrading

(Image credit: Canon)

One of the most advanced and impressive cameras you can buy

Specifications
Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: Full frame
Megapixels: 20.1MP
Lens mount: Canon RF
Screen: 3-inch fully articulating touchscreen, 1,620,000 dots
Viewfinder: Electronic
Max burst speed: 20fps
Max video resolution: 4K
Weight: 598g
Reasons to buy
+Highly advanced AF+Excellent IBIS
Reasons to avoid
-Is 20.1MP enough?-4K recording limits

Designed as Canon’s versatile all rounder, the EOS R6 sports a pretty modest pixel count at just 20.1MP. That might put some off, but the payoff is that excellent ISO range and performance, while the Dual Pixel AF II autofocus system is borrowed from the EOS R5 (see further down) that uses machine learning to assist with subject tracking. If you're shooting people regularly, this can be incredibly useful. The EOS R6 also gets a mightily impressive in-body image stabilisation (IBIS) system that can deliver up to 8 stops of compensation when paired with an RF lens that features Canon’s In-Lens (IS) image stabilization system. There's no top-plate LCD that some might find disappointing, while predominantly reinforced polycarbonate construction is slight letdown compared to some rivals. That aside, the EOS R6 is a highly capable and advanced camera that'll tackle a wedding with ease. 

(Image credit: Fujifilm)

A terrific stills camera that has a great video spec

Specifications
Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: APS-C
Megapixels: 26.1MP
Lens mount: Fujifilm X-mount
Screen: 3-inch vari-angle touchscreen, 1,620,000 dots
Viewfinder: Electronic
Max burst speed: 20fps
Max video resolution: 4K
Weight: 607g
Reasons to buy
+6.5-stop in-body stabilisation+Classic controls and layout
Reasons to avoid
-Complex burst & video fps options-No sensor advances over the X-T3

Fujifilm's flagship X-mount mirrorless camera is as the name suggests, now in its fourth iteration and the result is an incredibly refined and capable camera. It might not feature a full-frame like some rivals, but the 26-megapixel APS-C sized sensor doesn't disappoint, delivering images with rich colours and pleasing detail. Fujifilm's also established an excellent range of lenses for it's X-Series and has some very compelling options for wedding photographers. Elsewhere and pretty much most boxes are ticked, including in-body stabilization, a vari-angle touchscreen display and decent battery life. There's also an advanced 425-point AF system and some really advanced 4K video capabilities. Finally, there's the handling - some will be put off by the array of body-mounted controls, but get yourself dialled in and it makes it a very easy and intuitive camera to shoot with. 

(Image credit: Nikon)

The Z6 II delivers a strong performance across the board

Specifications
Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: Full frame
Megapixels: 24.2MP
Lens mount: Nikon Z
Screen: 3.2-inch tilting touchscreen, 2,100,000 dots
Viewfinder: Electronic
Max burst speed: 14fps
Max video resolution: 4K
Weight: 705g
Reasons to buy
+14fps burst shooting+Best-in-class build quality
Reasons to avoid
-Other AF systems more advanced-Tilt-angle display, not vari-angle

Nikon's mid-price full-frame mirrorless camera has a lot to offer the wedding photographer. For starters, you’re certainly not going to be disappointed with the results from the 24.5MP back-illuminated sensor, while the Z6 II can shoot great 4K video as well (up to 60p once Nikon launches a firmware update). The 273-point phase-detect AF system in the Z6 is a solid performer with coverage across 90% of the frame and includes EyeAF that's become popular elsewhere. The Z6 II is also capable of shooting at a very rapid 14fps with the mechanical shutter and has a decent buffer depth too. We really like the feel of the Z6 II in the hand as well thanks to the pleasing textured grip and the generous use of magnesium alloy used on the body panels. Like the sound of the Z6 II but want more pixels? Check out its bigger brother, the 45MP Nikon Z7 II

Professional

(Image credit: Sony)

The 61-megapixel A7R IV is remarkable technical achievement

Specifications
Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: Full frame
Megapixels: 61MP
Lens mount: Sony FE
Screen: 3-inch tilting touchscreen, 1,440,000 dots
Viewfinder: Electronic
Max burst speed: 10fps
Max video resolution: 4K
Weight: 655g
Reasons to buy
+World record resolution!+10fps shooting
Reasons to avoid
-Small body/big lens imbalance-Ageing design and handling

If you want huge files that offer plenty of flexibility when it comes to cropping and post-production, then look no further than the Alpha A7R IV from Sony. With a whopping 61-megapixels on tap, this easily beats other mirrorless and DSLR cameras in the resolution stakes. It's only bettered by much pricier medium format cameras. However, it's not just about image quality though as the A7R IV doesn't sacrifice performance. It's able to shoot at 10fps and supported by a highly capable 567-point AF system that includes Sony's excellent EyeAF tech. There's also a dependable 5.5 stop in-body image stabilisation (IBIS), but the A7R IV isn't perfect. Perhaps it's biggest handicap is the handling - it's certainly more refined than older models, but it's just not quite as accessible as rivals from Canon and Nikon. 

(Image credit: Nikon)

Possibly the best DSLR ever made and a top choice among wedding photographers

Specifications
Type: DSLR
Sensor: Full frame
Megapixels: 45.7MP
Lens mount: Nikon FX
Screen: 3-inch tilting touchscreen, 2,359,000 dots
Viewfinder: Optical
Max burst speed: 7fps
Max video resolution: 4K
Weight: 1,005g
Reasons to buy
+Epic battery life+Stunning image quality
Reasons to avoid
-Sluggish Live View focusing speed-Heavy compared to mirrorless rivals

In a world of advanced mirrorless cameras, the D850 might feel a bit behind the times, but that feeling will change once you start shooting with it. One of the best (if not best) DSLRs ever made, the D850 is the perfect do-it-all DSLR and one of the best wedding cameras going. This is thanks to a number of factors - there's the excellent 45MP full-frame with a broad dynamic so you can get every bit of detail from the bride's dress, the advanced 153-point AF gets the job done. It might be heavy compared to mirrorless rivals, but its durable weather-sealed build means it's ready to get drenched in champagne and carry on shooting. And it will carry on shooting with a deeply impressive battery life that will embarrass any mirrorless camera. A modern classic. 

(Image credit: Canon)

A high-resolution camera that delivers exceptional image quality

Specifications
Type: Mirrorless
Sensor: Full frame
Megapixels: 45MP
Lens mount: Canon RF
Screen: 3.15-inch fully articulating touchscreen, 2,100,000 dots
Viewfinder: Electronic
Max burst speed: 20fps
Max video resolution: 8K
Weight: 738g
Reasons to buy
+Pristine image quality+Best AF on the market
Reasons to avoid
-Recording limitations-Standard 4K is just okay

The most expensive camera here (by quite a long stretch), the Canon EOS R5 packs in a whole lot of tech. While the 8K video might grab the headlines (and not all for the best reasons), there's plenty to get excited about elsewhere. The 45MP full-frame sensor is hard to fault, while the class-leading AF system is simply the best we've seen on a camera. Clever enough to track faces even if they are obscured, this will pay huge dividends when shooting weddings, while the 12fps (20fps with electronic shutter) burst shooting speed will mean you never miss a shot. There's also the hugely impressive in-body image stabilization (IBIS) system that can compensate up to 8 stops when paired with an optically-stabilised RF lens. Expensive yes, but it certainly doesn't disappoint. 

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Phil Hall

Phil is the Managing Editor of Top Ten Reviews, and is a former Editor of Techradar's camera channel. He is an accomplished photographer, and specializes in shooting cycling and fast cars.