Full-frame cameras have been gradually becoming more favorable among professional photographers. They have considerably larger sensors that usually measure 36 mm x 24 mm, unlike APS-C that commonly comes at 23.6 mm x 15.7 mm. With such a huge lens, the full-frame camera can provide better photo quality and can even excel in low-light conditions.

The primary benefit of a full-frame camera is that it does not require cropping or crop factor. Also, a full-frame camera can generally provide a wider range of dynamics and better light/high ISO efficiency that results in a higher picture quality than the crop sensor. In terms of architectural photography, full-frame sensor cameras are often recommended since they have a wider angle that is beneficial for tilt and/or shifts lenses.

Further, all full-frame cameras are able to record greater tonal range and allow for greater depth of field control. Commonly, DSLR cameras are a legendary masterpiece when it comes to the category of full-frame sensors. However, they are much more expensive than the new favorite mirrorless cameras. Also, the latter has no complex internal mirror system compared to the DSLR. Hence, they have faster frame rates.

Having said that, Evangeline Summers, Solidsmack’s photography enthusiast and a California-based professional photographer, has extended her expertise with us. According to her, the best full-frame camera has a great auto-focus system, fast burst shooting, wide ISO range, and of course, excellent photo and video capture resolutions. Nonetheless, she also pointed out that your other preferences are also a must to consider. This includes the number of card slots, tiltable LCD screen, and some other features such as Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity.

One excellent sample of a full-frame camera Summers highly suggests is the Canon EOS R5 Full-frame mirrorless camera. It can capture the finest and uncropped 8K RAW/DCI resolution using its sensor. Likewise, EOS R5 is also excellent when it comes to the autofocus system with 5,940 AF points for photos and 4,500 for videos. The Nikon Z7 is also a notable option to consider due to its integrated built-in and advanced phase-detection system in the sensor. 

There are also other great candidates from Nikon and Canon that are worth considering, especially if you are new and trying to explore the world of full-frames. Having said as much, with several models and brands to choose from, finding the ideal full-frame camera was not even simple. Thereby, we've put together a list of the best full-frame cameras for you to consider. Take your full time to read our summary and click on the necessary buttons below to browse the incredible deals that Amazon has packed for you.

Best Full-Frame Cameras Comparison & Rating

Full-Frame Cameras

Features

Canon EOS R5 Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera with 8K Video, 45 Megapixel Full-Frame CMOS Sensor, DIGIC X Image Processor, Dual Memory Card Slots, and Up to 12 fps Mechnical Shutter, Body Only
  • 45 MP
  • Uncropped 8K RAW/DCI resolution
  • IBIS and lag-free viewfinder
Nikon Z7 Full-Frame Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera with 45.7MP Resolution, Body, Black, 1591
  • 45.7 MP
  • in-camera image stabilization system 
  • 3690k-dot Quad-VGA viewfinder
Sony α7R IV Full-frame Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera (ILCE7RM4/B)
  • 61 MP
  • dual UHS-II card slots
  • 567 PDAF and 425 contrast-detect point
Canon EOS 6D Mark II Digital SLR Camera Body – Wi-Fi Enabled Bundle with Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM Standard & Medium Telephoto Lens for Canon SLR Cameras - Fixed
  • 26.2 MP
  • Dual Pixel CMOS AF technology
  • 3.0-inch LCD vari-angle touch screen
Nikon D850 FX-Format Digital SLR Camera Body
  • 45.7 MP
  • 153-point AF system
  • 1 XQD and 1 UHS-II SD slot

1. Canon EOS R5 Mirrorless

Canon EOS R5 Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera with 8K Video, 45 Megapixel Full-Frame CMOS Sensor, DIGIC X Image Processor, Dual Memory Card Slots, and Up to 12 fps Mechnical Shutter, Body Only
Specifications:
98% Overall

Type

Mirrorless

Megapixels

45 MP

Continuous Shooting Speed

12 FPS mechanical shutter, 20 FPS electronic shutter

Max Video Resolution

8K DCI

98%
Image  quality
99%
features
98%
ease of use
97%
value for money
Pros:
  • With a 45 megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor that produces high image quality.
  • Features high-speed continuous shooting at up to 12 FPS with a mechanical shutter and up to 20 FPS with an electronic shutter.
  • The image processor is a DIGIC X with an ISO range of 100-51200 for stills.
  • CMOS AF has a dual-pixel coverage of around 100%.
  • Deep learning technology is being used to track people and animals.
Cons:
  • The battery life isn’t so impressive.
  • Gets hot easily when used for higher video resolutions.
Final Take:

This EOS R5 Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera, Canon's finest of the finest quality mirrorless cameras, is now dominating every marketplace. It's an outstanding blend of the structure of the EOS R, the versatility of the EOS 5D, and the professional-grade autofocus of the EOS-1D X.

"The sensor has an extraordinary 45 MP that creates images of unbelievable detail,” Summers said, "and it has a best in class EOS-1D X Mark III autofocus system with a huge 5,940 AF points optimized for photos and 4,500 for videos. Truly high-speed and accurate autofocus including eye/face detection. Most of all, you get IBIS and a bright and lag-free electronic viewfinder.”

An even more outstanding aspect of this full-frame camera is its video specifications since you can record uncropped 8K RAW/DCI resolution using the full-frame sensor. With this, you can exceed the performance of the conventional 4K resolutions. Hence, delivering more crisp, clearer, and vivid videos are just a piece of cake. 

However, in terms of heat accumulation, Canon EOS R5 offers quite a limitation. “Shooting 4K at 30 P triggers no overheating problems, so you can record quite enough footage as you want,” Summers said. “However, shooting 4K 60P would trigger the camera to heat up after around 35 minutes, whereas shooting 8K 30P will lead the camera to experience more physical heat within just 20 minutes. So, the more intense your video settings are, the greater limitations you will experience. But despite the heat accumulation and recording limitations, this full-frame camera produces cinema-quality shots.”

2. Nikon Z7 Mirrorless

Nikon Z7 Full-Frame Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera with 45.7MP Resolution, Body, Black, 1591
Specifications:
97% Overall

Type

Mirrorless

Megapixels

45.7 MP

Continuous Shooting Speed

9 FPS

Max Video Resolution

4K UHD at 30 P

98%
Image  quality
97%
features
97%
ease of use
97%
value for money
Pros:
  • Highlights a hybrid phase-detection/contrast AF with AF assist.
  • Offers an ISO 100, f/2.0 lens, and 20 °C/68 °F; the detection range in photo mode is -1 to +19 EV and -4 to +19 EV in low-light AF.
  • The cam’s creative lighting system offers an optical advanced wireless lighting.
  • Has the new EXPEED 6 image-processing engine.
  • Compatible with new Z Nikon lenses and a wide range of Nikon device accessories.
  • Comfortable and easy to use with its deep grip and balanced weight.
  • Aided by the new XQD memory cards.
Cons:
  • One memory card slot only.
  • The autofocus takes some getting used to and the continuous focusing is not the best.
Final Take:

When the Nikon Z7 Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera was launched, the community of full-frame mirrorless became far more competitive. It is among the few cameras to defy Sony's supremacy in the full-frame mirrorless camera in the market.

"The full-frame CMOS sensor in this Nikon Z7 Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera may seem quite identical to what is used in the Nikon D850 DSLR," Summers noted, "but the real distinction with this is that Nikon Z7 has an integrated built-in and advanced phase-detection system in the sensor."

Moreover, according to Summers, the Z7 is equipped with most of the functions of D850. It can even exceed it due to the number of added features integrated by Nikon. Also, when used in conjunction with a typical contrast autofocus system, its 493 phase-detection AF points comprise 90% of the input image. Compared to D850, you have well-spread autofocus points and not just the middle third.

You also get a 3690k-dot Quad-VGA electronic viewfinder which lets you change the settings of the cam without your eye off on it. As to its build and ergonomics, Nikon Z7 is well compatible with bulkier DSLR lenses. “The company made an effectively balanced feeling even though it is small in size and you use it for bigger lenses,” Summers added. 

A further notable aspect of this full-frame camera is the presence of an in-camera image stabilization system, which is also a bold move for Nikon since most of its preceding interchangeable lens cameras utilized lens-based Vibration Reduction (VR) to reduce the shake. As a matter of fact, its IBIS will overwhelm you when you see it produce stills with no visible camera shake. Hence, this feature allows you to experience the 5-stop VR system even if your lenses are non-VR. Terrific.

3. Sony a7R IV Mirrorless

Sony α7R IV Full-frame Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera (ILCE7RM4/B)
Specifications:
97% Overall

Type

Mirrorless

Megapixels

61 MP

Continuous Shooting Speed

10 FPS

Max Video Resolution

4K

98%
Image  quality
97%
features
97%
ease of use
97%
value for money
Pros:
  • Known as the world's first 61 MP full-frame 35 mm; back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS Image Sensor.
  • Provides advanced subject recognition in real-time monitoring as well as real-time eye AF.
  • Continuous shooting at up to 10 FPS with AE/AF monitoring, 26.2 MP in APS C crop mode.
  • With 567 phase-detection autofocus points and 425 contrast autofocus points.
  • Comes with a Sony BIONZ X processor.
  • For greater color accuracy, it has 15 stops of dynamic range at low sensitivities.
  • Offers a 4K video featuring a full pixel readout.
Cons:
  • The α7R IV doesn't have a 4K/60p.
Final Take:

This Sony α7R IV Full-frame Mirrorless Camera 61 MP BSI-CMOS sensor can capture the attention of professional photographers due to a handful of reasons. It dominates its full-frame competitors with some edge and revives Sony as the pioneer of a full-frame mirrorless camera in the market.

“It has integrated a lot of alluring features that make it more competitive in the market,” said Summers, “including the 15 stops of dynamic range being claimed by Sony, hybrid AF system with 567 PDAF and 425 contrast-detect point, and 74% frame coverage.”

You also get a real-time eye, human and animal AF. The added weather resistance capabilities of the cam is also something to appreciate. Most of all, we love its 5.76M-dot EVF, built-in 5-axis image stabilization, and dual UHS-II card slots which are being sought by a lot of professional photographers nowadays. It also has 802.11ac Wi-Fi plus Bluetooth and NFC, allowing you wireless file transfer and camera control from a computer.

Furthermore, according to Summers, the Sony a7R IV also gives you high-speed options to assure that you can capture fast moving subjects while keeping image detail and accuracy at the finest form possible. With this, you have up to 10 FPS continuous shooting (up to 68 photos) at 61 MP with AE/AF tracking and the option for 26.2 MP in APS C crop mode which is still an impressive resolution.

4. Canon EOS 6D Mark II DSLR

Canon EOS 6D Mark II Digital SLR Camera Body – Wi-Fi Enabled Bundle with Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM Standard & Medium Telephoto Lens for Canon SLR Cameras - Fixed
Specifications:
96% Overall

Type

DSLR

Megapixels

26.2 MP

Continuous Shooting Speed

6.5 FPS

Max Video Resolution

1080p

95%
Image  quality
96%
features
96%
ease of use
95%
value for money
Pros:
  • Provides an optical viewfinder and a 45-point all-cross AF setup.
  • Features a dual pixel CMOS AF with phase detection.
  • Comes with a 3.0 inch LCD with a variable angle touch screen.
  • Displays a DIGIC 7 image processor, GPS, Wi-Fi, NFC, and low-energy Bluetooth.
  • The telephoto lens, which has a regular focal length of 50 mm, is useful in a wide range of shooting settings and is suitable for everyday use.
  • This camera provides consistent photography in low light and a shallow depth of field.
  • The ultrasonic autofocus motor (USM) ensures fast, smooth, and virtually silent operation.
Cons:
  • Does not shoot 4K videos.
Final Take:

Canon, which was established in 1997, offers a wide range of specialized mainstream digital imaging products and solutions, including this Canon EOS 6D Mark II DSLR Camera. 

“The 26-megapixel sensor is very satisfactory,” Summers stated, “it is an upgrade to the previous 20.2 MP EOS 6D. Furthermore, it features Canon's Dual Pixel CMOS AF technology, which ensures live view autofocus and shooting are phenomenal. Also, it employs two photodiodes per pixel which allow phase-difference detection autofocus and assure you that every inch of your image plane has fast and accurate AF.”

Summers claimed that the EOS 6D Mark II’s intelligent viewfinder allows for electronic leveling and grid display, which is a very efficient feature. “This means that you can easily adjust your camera’s horizontal and vertical tilt to let you have the correct angle that you need,” she added.

Furthermore, the 3.0-inch LCD vari-angle touch screen won’t just let you review the photos with ease, but it is also a great aid in capturing the best quality stills. Through its touch sensitive controls, you can select and adjust focus!

Lastly, the EOS 6D Mark II has a comfortable contour and layout, hence enabling you to have an easy ergonomic and at the same time, experience the upgrade that Canon has embedded in this full-frame DSLR camera.

5. Nikon D850 FX-Format DSLR

Nikon D850 FX-Format Digital SLR Camera Body
Specifications:
95% Overall

Type

DSLR

Megapixels

45.7 MP

Continuous Shooting Speed

7 FPS

Max Video Resolution

4K

95%
Image  quality
94%
features
95%
ease of use
95%
value for money
Pros:
  • Provides 8k as well as 4k time-lapse with improved sharpness and accuracy.
  • Has a tilting touchscreen, a focus shift shooting mode, and also excellent battery life.
  • Provides 4K Ultra HD video recording.
  • Features an exceptional resolution of 45.7 megapixels.
  • Has a silent photography function.
Cons:
  • There is no bottom grip intended for vertical shooting.
Final Take:

Comes with high-resolution images including a combination of high speeds and extra mile video resolution, this Nikon D850 FX-Format DSLR leaves the full-frame camera community in awe.

"The D850 is Nikon's leading high-resolution full-frame DSLR camera in the market," Summers claimed. "It is one of the industry's fastest-shooting DSLRs, which contributes to its popularity in the digital world. Besides its sensor, it has a Expeed 5 image processor which delivers fast burst rates. Most of all, the D850 has 4K full frame video, which is utterly amazing.”

According to her, this set of features broadens the camera's value to both hobbyists and various types of experienced photographers. "When it was first released, its 45.7MP sensor, 7 FPS burst shooting mode, and 153-point AF system along with its other spectacular specifications attracted numerous digital camera enthusiasts," she continued.

Furthermore, Nikon has designed this camera with a back-side illuminated (BSI) FX-Format full-frame image sensor. This is a very spectacular feature because with this, more light is captured. Thereby helps you have superb still and video captures even in low-light conditions. And the viewfinder? Bright and incredibly wide. Most of all, you have two fast memory card slots which is basically 1 XQD and 1 UHS-II SD slot.

Best Full-Frame Cameras - Buyer's Guide

type

In the realm of full-frame cameras for years, DSLRs remain popular. However, now that cameras such as the Canon EOS R5 and Nikon Z7 have been released, full-frame mirrorless has been slowly becoming more and more preferable. This explains why many professionals are moving from DSLRs to mirrorless models.

Furthermore, bear in mind that the major comparison of the two categories is that a mirrorless camera has no incredibly complex internal mirror system compared to what DSLR has. This major difference enables the mirrorless type to be smaller in size and allows better maneuverability. Moreover, the lack of a mirror enables them to operate at greater and faster frame rates. Mirrorless cameras also excel greatly in videos. However, in terms of access to wider selection of lenses and better battery life, you might want to consider DSLRs.

resolution

Megapixels play a role in attaining optimum image resolution. If you intend to enlarge images, you must get a full-frame camera with high resolution, such as the Sony a7R IV which has the highest megapixels of 61 MP in this review. Further, high megapixels are very reliable when it comes to having crisp and detailed images.

frame rate

The frame rate (FPS) refers to the speed at which a camera can take photos. Not all photographers need much lightning-fast shooting speed but it can be important for action and sports photographers. Remember that the greater the frame rate, the better. This is important especially if you intend to use the unit for videos. If your subject is moving fast, expect that lots of motions should be captured detail by detail to get the motion smooth and the details excellent. One good example is the Canon EOS R5 that has a 12 FPS mechanical shutter and 20 FPS electronic shutter.

lenses

As said, full-frame cameras can be in the form of mirrorless and DSLR types. There are lots of things to fancy about mirrorless types but in terms of selection of compatible lenses, DSLR is your choice. So if you want to really invest in a camera, grow your potential, and explore more lenses in the future, it is important the compatibility of the full-frame camera to other lenses. Look for the one with a vast lens ecosystem.

Best Full-Frame Cameras - FAQs

What's better between APS-C and full-frame?

Full frame sensors are much better compared to APS-C sensors for low-light photography. Since the pixels on full-frame sensors are bigger, they generate intricate details and have a better image quality than an APS-C sensor.

What is one benefit of shooting with a full-frame camera?

Full-frame cameras have more depth-of-field flexibility, which is one of their best features. It lets you get shallow depth-of-field effects, hence better focus on the subject.

Do full-frame cameras let in more light?

Yes, the larger sensor of a full-frame camera can capture more light. But another factor to bear in mind is that while full-frame cameras obtain greater light, an object shot using a full-frame camera and that one captured with a crop-sensor camera would be exposed equally.

Is it expensive to buy a full-frame camera?

Sensor sizes vary in digital cameras, and the larger the sensor, the higher the photo resolution and quality. Full-frame cameras have sensors that are the same size as typical 35 mm film, approximately 36 x 24 mm or more. This seems to be twice the size of the APS-C sensors used in several DSLRs and mirrorless cameras, indicating that full-frame cameras may cost twice as much or even more.

Author

Santi Bongco is an editor at SolidSmack which is the leading site for 3D CAD, robots, cool product designs, and other technologies. For the past seven years, he taught robotics and developed innovative 3D printer ideas with his students. He also helped in developing some innovative digital ideas and products for various digital marketing businesses and big companies in Asia. Now, aside from exploring buffet restos in California, he enjoys leading groups of our in-house experts in trying some of your favorite products and electronic brands to write insightful reviews for you. PS: He loves reviewing appliances and taking them home to personally ‘try’ them.