What do you do when your brand new camera is stolen in Cuba? Well, of course, the first answer is to break down, but once you’re done with that it’s time to move on and acknowledge the important things in life.

Next, it’s time to file insurance claims and be rewarded with a shiny new replacement. (BTW I’m still waiting on this process to be complete, but thank the Lord for American Express Purchase Protection!)

Instead of dwelling on my misfortune, I decided to turn this incident into an upgrade. I have always traveled with a decent point and shoot and it’s been enough to get me by. Since purchasing an iPhone7+ with an incredible camera of its own, I realized that having a separate point and shoot was a bit redundant. Instead, I wanted to take things up a notch.

 

Instagram: @MoxieAndEpoxy

 

DSLR vs Mirrorless Cameras

The next logical step up from a point and shoot is either a DSLR or a mirrorless camera. A DSLR is a Digital Single Lens Reflex system (yes, I had to google that – I’m not a professional, I’m just tellin’ you what I learned). It’s basically what you think of when you picture a professional digital camera with interchangeable lenses. The secret with the DSLR is that it uses a mirror for its image processing. Most of the new DSLRs are lightweight, but bulky because of the mirror.

A mirrorless camera has the advantage of being significantly smaller because there’s no longer a mirror taking up valuable real estate inside the body. Instead, the whole process is digital. Being a full time traveler I am always looking for the lightest, smallest and easiest to carry items – with that, I decided mirrorless was the right way to go for me. I also think that mirrorless technology is the way of the future. Yes, I’m aware many photographers are cringing at the thought.

Which Camera Should I Buy?

There are very few camera stores left in the US and if you go to a large retailer like WalMart or Bestbuy their selection is dismal and their salespeople are not knowledgeable. Even though the internet created the scarcity of reliable camera stores, it’s now often our only option for finding the right product.

When I first started searching the internet for the perfect camera I was completely overwhelmed with the choices. There are SO MANY options and you don’t know which articles to trust because everyone has an angle.

This is the reason I am writing this post. I want to help people (my people) who are in a similar situation and have no idea where to start. I will tell you about the cameras that I considered buying and exactly what information I found useful. I will give you the prices for almost all the cameras I’ve listed with a basic starter lens. The advantage of going with a camera that has interchangeable lenses is that you can always upgrade and improve the quality of your photos with a new lens; if you have more money to spend upfront, I would recommend investing in a nicer lens than the one listed, so keep that in mind! In the end I will reveal the camera that I chose and why.

AT A GLANCE:

  • Excellent Compact Point and Shoot
  • Image Stabilization
  • Flip up screen for “Selfie” Mode
  • Camera Weighs 10.7 ounces
  • 20.2 Megapixels
  • Refurbished Model from Canon Direct, save $150.

Why Buy: If you’re in the market for higher quality than an iPhone or you’re looking for something whose WHOLE JOB is being a camera, this is the right move for you. This was the camera I had in Cuba and I loved it! It’s compact, it has a flip up “selfie” screen and it’s built really well. Touch to focus is an awesome feature and it does a great job with video. Plus, Casey Neistat loves this camera and I do anything Casey tells me to do! 😉

Keep in Mind: this camera does not have a viewfinder or interchangeable lenses. I would advise an extra battery if you plan on using it for video.

Video: Here’s a dude comparing the G7X and the G7Xii. He concludes that he prefers the mark ii but you can make your own decision by clicking here.

AT A GLANCE:

  • Fastest Autofocus in the Industry
  • Excellent Entry Level Camera
  • Sharp Image Quality in a Tiny Package
  • Camera Body and Lens 16.5 ounces
  • 24.3 Megapixels

Why Buy: This is your first step into the world of mirrorless cameras and it will give you room to grow with the ability to upgrade lenses. Sony boasts the fastest focus in the game. Plus, as with all mirrorless cameras, a simple firmware update will help to keep your camera functioning like new for years to come!

Video: If you’d like to see some sample footage, click here.

AT A GLANCE:

  • Beautiful Camera with a Very Loyal Fanbase
  • Film Simulations give you an old film look
  • A good entry level camera
  • Camera Body: 24.5 ounces
  • 16.3 Megapixels

Why Buy: Fujifilm users are an extremely loyal bunch. Whether it’s the feel of the camera, the film simulations or the retro camera bodies, Fuji is certainly doing something right. The XT-10 is a GREAT camera that will give you everything you need in a very small package, a huge bang for your buck!

Video: Here’s a professional photographer using the XT-10 and then blowing up the images as large prints, click here.

AT A GLANCE:

  • Shoots in 4K Video, In body Image Stabilization
  • Fastest Autofocus in the Industry with more Autofocus Points than any other.
  • Stands up to a6500 and is cheaper
  • Camera Body: 16 ounces
  • 24.2 Megapixels

Why Buy: This camera is a step up from the a6000 because it shoots in 4K. While shooting in 4K is generally overkill, for people who do a lot of video this could be a major selling point. I say that to say 4K video is important to me but it may not be important to you. Also, the a6300 has more than twice as many autofocus points as the a6000 – it has even more focus points than it’s more expensive counterpart, the Sony Ar7ii which we will get to later.

Sony came out with a newer version of this camera, the a6500 but the improvements were largely superficial – I believe the a6300 remains a better value. Here’s a side-by-side comparison by DXO where both cameras were given the same overall score.

Video: For a detailed review from a guy who sounds like a robot: click here.

AT A GLANCE:

  • In body Image Stabilization
  • Fully Articulated Screen for “Selfie” Mode
  • Camera Body: 16.5 ounces
  • 16 Megapixels Live
  • 40 Megapixel High Res Shoot Mode

Why Buy: Of all the options I’ve listed, this lens is a bit more of a zoom. It is also the only one of the mirrorless cameras that has a fully articulated “selfie” screen which is nice to have for vlogging. One really cool feature this camera offers is it’s 40 Megapixel multiple exposure mode that allows you to take a super high quality image by combining several photos into one. This camera is also very attractive and feels good to hold.

Video: Let DigitalRev sell you on it, click here.

AT A GLANCE:

  • In body Image Stabilization + 4K Video
  • Wonderful look, excellent feel, with the most loyal users
  • Used by Professional Photographers
  • Camera Body: 28.8 ounces
  • 24.3 Megapixels

Why Buy: For people who love cameras, there’s something seemingly magical about the Fuji XT2. I know two professional photographers who have recently switched from using big bulky DSLRs to using this small compact Fuji. They both have said that this camera has made them fall in love with photography again. It shoots in 4K and offers all of the features you could want, but has a style that makes its fans incredibly loyal.

Friend’s Photography Sites Shot with XT2:

Jeremy Garretson Photography 

Kevin Titus Photo

Video: For an in depth review of the camera: click here.

AT A GLANCE:

  • Full Frame Sensor delivers unparalleled image quality
  • In body Image Stabilization + 4K Video
  • Used by Professional Photographers worldwide
  • Camera Body: 22.6 ounces
  • 42.4 Megapixels

Why Buy: Most people will agree that this is the best mirrorless camera on the market, if not the best CAMERA on the market. This product is incredible and if you’re looking for something completely professional with a digital viewfinder, this is absolutely the right choice for you. Unlike ANY OTHER mirrorless camera listed above, the Sony a7 series uses a full frame sensor which is just fancy talk for – this camera provides incredibly sharp photos and performs really well in low light. The difference in quality definitely shows, so if you have the budget for it, go for the best camera on the market!

Friend’s Website’s Using Sony A7Rii:

Travelstache

Video: Let’s let Digital Rev take it away by clicking here.

It’s funny because at the end of this review he says that they will probably come out with a new version of this camera in a few weeks, meanwhile it’s been at the top of the market since 2015!

I CHOSE THE SONY A6300!! 

The 3 key deciding factors were as follows:

  • I wanted something super lightweight and compact.
  • I didn’t want to spend more than $1,500 and this fell nicely in my budget with room to purchase a case, a lens filter and two backup batteries.
  • As I continue to grow my youtube channel, having the ability to shoot 4K was a must.

After ALL THIS RESEARCH I was so nervous about whether I’d made the right choice and I can honestly tell you that I couldn’t be happier with my decision!

Pin this post for later! 

I hope this article is helpful to you if you’re also in the market! Please feel free to ask any questions in the comments below and I will get back to you! Happy hunting.

All items marked (*) are affiliate links. If you purchase something through one of these links I will receive a small commission at no extra charge to you. I would never recommend a product that I don’t believe in and this is just one small way to keep this blog running!

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