Best 4K Camera for Filmmaking 2020: Latest Reviews

You have probably heard about 4K cameras because they are gradually becoming the standard cameras for video shooting.

That is great, but it also means that picking the best 4K camera for filmmaking will be much harder. While most point and shoot cameras and camera phones already shoot in 4K, they do have small sensors and fixed lenses, which limits their performance and versatility.

Let’s learn more about some of the awesome choices you can make when shopping for a top-quality product.

Most-Popular 4K Cameras for Filmmaking: Comparison List

We have a run-down of some well-made 4K cameras for the money. Have a look at it below:

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EDITOR'S CHOICE
Nikon D500 DX-Format Digital SLR (Body Only), Base
Canon EOS C100 Cinema EOS Camera with Dual Pixel...
Sony Alpha a6400 Mirrorless Camera: Compact APS-C...
Nikon D850 FX-format Digital SLR Camera Body
Sony Alpha a6500 Mirrorless Digital Camera w/...
Panasonic Lumix GH5 4K Digital Camera, 20.3...
Product Name
Nikon D500 DX-Format Digital SLR (Body Only), Base
Canon EOS C100 Cinema EOS Camera with Dual Pixel...
Sony Alpha a6400 Mirrorless Camera: Compact APS-C...
Nikon D850 FX-format Digital SLR Camera Body
Sony Alpha a6500 Mirrorless Digital Camera w/...
Panasonic Lumix GH5 4K Digital Camera, 20.3...
Dimensions
3.2 in
3.5 in
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3.2 in
2.95 in
3.2 in
Weight
3.95 pounds
8.4 pounds
1.45 pounds
4.2 pounds
1.72 pounds
4.55 pounds
Prime Status
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-
-
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EDITOR'S CHOICE
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Nikon D500 DX-Format Digital SLR (Body Only), Base
Product Name
Nikon D500 DX-Format Digital SLR (Body Only), Base
Dimensions
3.2 in
Weight
3.95 pounds
Prime Status
-
Check Latest Price
Picture
Canon EOS C100 Cinema EOS Camera with Dual Pixel...
Product Name
Canon EOS C100 Cinema EOS Camera with Dual Pixel...
Dimensions
3.5 in
Weight
8.4 pounds
Prime Status
-
Check Latest Price
Picture
Sony Alpha a6400 Mirrorless Camera: Compact APS-C...
Product Name
Sony Alpha a6400 Mirrorless Camera: Compact APS-C...
Dimensions
-
Weight
1.45 pounds
Prime Status
-
Check Latest Price
Picture
Nikon D850 FX-format Digital SLR Camera Body
Product Name
Nikon D850 FX-format Digital SLR Camera Body
Dimensions
3.2 in
Weight
4.2 pounds
Prime Status
-
Check Latest Price
Picture
Sony Alpha a6500 Mirrorless Digital Camera w/...
Product Name
Sony Alpha a6500 Mirrorless Digital Camera w/...
Dimensions
2.95 in
Weight
1.72 pounds
Prime Status
-
Check Latest Price
Picture
Panasonic Lumix GH5 4K Digital Camera, 20.3...
Product Name
Panasonic Lumix GH5 4K Digital Camera, 20.3...
Dimensions
3.2 in
Weight
4.55 pounds
Prime Status
Check Latest Price

These are the 12 best 4K cameras for filmmaking

1. Nikon DX-Format D500 Digital SLR Body

Our top pick is the Nikon DX-Format D500 Digital SLR Body. This camera is designed to take you to wherever your photography passion leads you. From exceptional speed and high resolution to stunning clarity is one of the best cameras in the market today.

Product Description

You can use the D500 for low-light busy cityscapes and also for fast action shots and wildlife scenes. On top of that, this device has a versatile and rugged design for convenience and maximum comfort when using it.

After capturing your beautiful images and videos, you can admire them on the camera's high-resolution touchscreen tilt display. This small and lightweight camera is packed with a lot of power, and the DX sensor captures clear and précis images.

Other Features and Benefits

One of the best features in the D500 is that you can share captured imaged and filmed videos through the inbuilt snap bridge Bluetooth and Wi-Fi capability. For those who want an even faster transfer mode, this camera has got you covered since it is compatible with the WT-7A that allows file transfer to a computer or FTP server at a speed of 866.7 MPs.

Pros

  • Small and lightweight
  • Great image and video quality
  • Inbuilt Wi-Fi
  • Great audio control

Cons

  • Slow autofocus

2.  Canon C100 EOS Cinema Dual Pixel AF-Body

Next up is the Canon C100 EOS Cinema Dual Pixel AF-Body. This tool is fitted with a DIGIC III picture processor and a CMOS picture sensor for taking a realistic video using 12-stops dynamic range, shallow profundity field, and a great low-light affectability.

Product Description

The Canon C100 provides most of the benefits of its predecessor while including advanced operational highlights and new imaging. This enormously advanced device features the popular canon super 35mm Sensor that is used in most Canon EOS cameras.

It features a light and smaller body that makes it easy to carry around.  Also worth noting is that the C100 takes up to 24Mbps with an AVCHD codec, which makes it easy to integrate existing workflows. Its Customization and operability make this camera suitable for one-person operation. 

Other Features and Benefits

This camera’s image sensor allows cinematic video recording and image capture as it provides dynamic range characteristics and great field control for exceptional images. Then there is the 8.3 megapixel that increases pixel pit to allow better sensitivity and minimizes noise.

The unique sensor allows this device to take independent blue, green, and red channels for HD video. Besides that, you will find two SD card slots in this camera so you can conveniently save your videos and images.

Pros

  • High affect ability
  • Clean HMDI signal
  • Wide DR gamma and Group Log
  • Low clamor and High affect ability
  • List Element

Cons

  • Guarantee not referenced

3. Sony Mirrorless Alpha a6400 Compact APS-C Camera

The Sony Mirrorless Alpha a6400 Compact APS-C Camera is another great option since it is fitted with impressive features that enable you to take sharp, clear, and precise images. To learn more about the Sony a6400, check out the review below.

Product Description

To begin with, this camera's image sensor features approximately 24.2 megapixels. On top of that, it uses a highly effective circuit and copper wiring, which helps to achieve wide-range sensitivity and low noise performance.

Besides that, the camera's design helps to increase the readout speed and supports functions such as 4K recording, 11fps continuous shooting, and HD 120fps shooting. In addition, the image processing algorithms are advanced, which helps to achieve superb image quality and clarity.

Other Features and Benefits

4D focus system in this camera is among the fastest AF acquisition so it can focus incredibly even in the fastest moving subjects. With just a half-press of the capture button, this device can detect the subject eyes automatically.

Its LCD touchscreen provides multiple touch functions that enable fast focus operation and intuitive shooting. The advanced quick AF plus focus functionality makes it a great choice for video creators and vloggers that create and upload content online regularly.

Pros

  • Allows smooth auto-focusing
  • Tiltable LCD touchscreen
  • Multiple touch screen option
  • Incredible video and image quality

Cons

  • A bit pricey

4. Nikon FX-Format D850 Digital Camera Body

The Nikon FX-Format D850 Digital Camera Body is also a great option as it features a great combination of high resolution and high-speed shooting. This model is an advancement from the 810. Let's look at some of the features and benefits to help you understand the device better.

Product Description

With a 45.7 megapixel sensor, this camera allows you to capture clear, smooth, and precise images. Another notable feature is that it has a gapless microlens with an illuminated design for better light-gathering abilities.

What's more, the wiring is positioned at the back of light receptors, which help to prevent light obstruction. The five image processor helps to attain a continuous shooting speed. It offers a 51-frame buffer, which is great given its resolution.

Other Features and Benefits

Also worth noting is that the Nikon FX-Format D850 Digital Camera Body has two card slots for conveniently storing your videos and images. The camera’s center point is sensitive to 3 and 4 EV, which means it can perform incredibly well even in low light conditions.

Then there is the autofocus mode that contains a 3D color tracking and single-point AF for continuous focus points. 

Pros

  • Dual card slots
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
  • Buttons light up
  • Weather and dust sealing
  • Multiple video options

Cons

  • Slower autofocus than Nikon D810

5. Sony Alpha Mirrorless a6500 Digital Camera

The next item to earn a spot on this list is the Sony Alpha Mirrorless a6500 Digital Camera. This is a great advancement from the Sony a6300. They have similar looks, but the a6500 has a better processing chip, a better stabilization that allows quicker and more complex processing.

Product Description

Just like the Nikom a6300, this model is fitted with a hybrid focus system and a stellar image sensor. It is quite small and lightweight, which makes it perfect for users who like hiking and traveling with a lightweight camera. 

Besides that, this device is well protected against dust and moisture. Unlike most mirrorless cameras, this one is equipped with a pop-up flash and EVF. AS a result, it is excellent for attaching a flash, wireless trigger, and external microphone.

Other Features and Benefits

The camera's touchpad is quite sensitive, and you can use it conveniently as a touch screen when positioning or triggering focus and shutter. On top of that, the processing chip provides a greater response.

The Nikon a6500 has Sony's menu system, which makes it easy to identify and remember the parts of the menu. What's more, this camera has a high ISO output, which helps to attain clearer, cleaner, and more precise images. Then there is the inbuilt Wi-Fi that enables you to transfer data to your phone or tablet.

Pros

  • Great video and image quality
  • Fast autofocus
  • Compact and lightweight body
  • Larger buffer

Cons

  • No external charger

6. Canon Mark 1V EOS 5D SLR Full Frame Digital Camera Body

The Canon Mark 1V EOS 5D SLR Full Frame Digital Camera Body one of the most popular cameras among filmmakers. It is designed with great features to appeal to photography enthusiasts and professionals. To know more about the camera, read on!

Product Description

Though the EOS mark Iv has a similar look with its predecessor, it is equipped with multiple upgrades, including interval timer, GPS, Wi-Fi, touch screen, high-resolution sensor, 4K video capture, and weather sealing.

Besides that, it uses a six processor and is built around a 30.4 MP sensor. All these impressive features come together to form a great digital camera. It is constructed with magnesium alloy and polycarbonate, which makes it durable and stylish.

Other Features and Benefits.

A significant improvement has been made on the Mark IV in terms of resolution. There is an extra rated frame that allows you to record 4K videos. In addition, this camera is fitted with Dual Pixel AF, which offers precise, clear, and smooth focus tracking.

Pros

  • Dual card slots
  • Great color and design
  • Inbuilt Wi-Fi and GPS
  • Great battery life
  • High ISO performance

Cons

  • Low light AF

7. PANASONIC GH5 LUMIX 4K Digital Camera

The Panasonic Gh5 Lumix 4K Digital Camera was first introduced in 2017, and it replaced the Panasonic GH4. This camera is equipped with one of the greatest image stabilization. This brief review should give you a better understanding of the device.

Product Description

This tool offers better and more quality images and videos than its predecessor. Considering the sensor's size, the GH5 offers sharp, precise, and cleat images. In addition, you can take 4K HD Videos at 60 fps with this device.

More importantly, this camera can play videos in the slow-motion inside, which means there is no need for transferring images or videos to your phone or computer for reviewing. Besides that, you can record as much as you want until the battery dies or SD gets full because the GH5 has no recording time limit.

Other Features and Benefits

The noise performance is greatly reduced, which allows you to take images without causing attention or disrupting others. On top of that, this camera is fitted with a 225 AF, which is a great advancement from its predecessor.

The menu features a scroll slider and is also optimized so you can scroll through using a single finger. Another notable feature is that the PANASONIC GH5 offers around 400 shots when charged fully. Lastly, it comes with SD card slots that are compatible with UHS-II.

Pros

  • Ergonomic design
  • Dust and weather-sealed
  • Excellent battery life
  • Built-in time-lapse system

Cons

  • No inbuilt flash

8. Sony Mirrorless a7R III Camera

Next up is the Sony Mirrorless a7R III Camera, which is an advanced version of the a7II. They have the same sensor, but the processor and the circuitry are different. They are way better, which helps to improve the dynamic range.

Product Description

One of the most impressive features of this camera is that it is properly sealed against water, dust, and splashes. In addition, it is equipped with a wide and big grip that offers room for its wide battery and also gives it an ergonomic design.

This camera comes with a shoulder strap, cable protector, metering tape, eyepiece, power cord, and a charger. Then there is the upgraded EteAF that provides precise, clear, and sharp images. 

Other Features and Benefits

Besides that, it features two SD card slots. The lower one is compatible with UHS-II cards, while the other upper one is best for UHS-I cards. The big door on the side has a lock, which prevents you from accidentally opening the camera.

You can expect low noise performance and high dynamic range with the Sony ar III. Another great thing is that it is ideal for capturing, even in the most challenging conditions. With a 42 P sensor, the image and video quality of this camera are undeniably incredible. 

Pros

  • Ergonomic design
  • High-quality images and design
  • Allow silent and continuous shooting
  • Great metering system

Cons

  • No raw processing system

9. Fujifilm Mirrorless X-H1 Digital Camera

Another great filmmaking camera is the Fujifilm Mirrorless X-H1 Digital Camera. With a durable and robust design, this device is ideal for shooting in multiple scenarios by professional videographers and photographers.

Product Description

The camera's body is constructed with magnesium, which makes it sturdy enough to withstand regular use. In addition, it features an advanced lens mount structure, which gives it a lightweight and compact design.

On top of that, the Fujifilm X-H1 is more resistant to damage and shock than the previous model. Then there is the exterior coating that is completely scratch resistant. You can pair this camera with your smartphone, computer, or tablet when you want to transfer images and videos as you shoot.

Other Features and Benefits

The switch button is located right where you place your thumb, which allows you to adjust the focus point with your thumb. As a result, your index finger can fully concentrate on the essential shutter release action.

As if that is not enough, this device has a built-in stabilization mechanism which comes in handy when shooting in low light conditions and active scenes. On top of that, the camera allows remote shooting with a tablet or smartphone. 

Pros

  • Great performance
  • Wide viewfinder
  • Inbuilt stabilization system
  • High image resolution

Cons

  • No flash

10. PANASONIC GH5S LUMIX 4K Digital Body Camera

The PANASONIC GH5S LUMIX 4K Digital Body Camera is designed for mobility, low light-gathering, high performance, and durability. This is a great option for Professional Anamorphic and Cinematic 4K Video production.

Product Description

The camera comes with a cable holder, hot shoe cover, USB connection, Battery charger, Quick start guide, and basic owner's manual. It features two SD card slots where all your images and videos are safely saved.

Other Features and Benefits

For starters, the mirror vibration control system helps to reduce internal vibrations, which allow you to capture images quietly. On top of that, multiple gears and cams fitted in this device ensure you achieve high resolution and image sharpness.

Pros

  • Dual card slots
  • Great image and video quality
  • Weather sealing
  • Amazing design

Cons

  • Limited touchscreen control

11. Fujifilm Mirrorless X-T3 Black Digital Camera

The Fujifilm Mirrorless X-T3 Black Digital Camera is an upgraded version of the Fujifilm X-T2. One of the most outstanding features of this camera is great and tactile JPEG shooting experience. In addition, it has a vintage design that gives it a stylish look.

Product Description

This camera is built with magnesium alloy, which makes it quite sturdy. The analogue dials featured in the Fujifilm X-T3 offers you a fun and tactile shooting experience. On top of that, it contains an amazing simulation mode that allows you to be creative without going overboard.

Other Features and Benefits

The high processing speed and enhanced algorithm allow it to refocus and frequently meter than the previous mode. This ultimately improves its autofocus when shooting sport situations and erratic movements across the frame.

Also worth noting is that this model has a dual face AF that maintains the right focus then shooting from the front or side.

Pros

  • Classy design
  • Speedy continuous shooting
  • Customizable controls
  • Great image and video quality
  • Excellent autofocus

Cons

  • Poor battery life

12. Canon UHD 4K XC15 Professional Camcorder

The last but by no means item on this list is the Canon UHD 4K XC15 Professional Camcorder. This device not only has an elegant design but also offers high-quality images and videos. Below is a brief review that will give you a better understanding of the camcorder.

Product Description

To start with, this camera has a 12.0 Megapixel CMOS image sensor that helps to achieve clear and precise images.  The tilt LCD monitor offers the CX15 with a vivid-color and bright playing back and shooting footage. In addition, it is equipped with two-axis mechanisms that allow you to shoot from multiple angles. 

Other Features and Benefits

To offer stability, this camera is equipped with a shoe mount that is not found on other Canon cameras. You can take still images that are 8.3 megapixels from the 4K UHD files. In addition, you can easily extract any frame you like and then convert it to a great still image.

Pros

  • Fast and continuous shooting
  • Great autofocus
  • Great ISO performance
  • Multiple angles shooting

Cons

  • Slower buffer clearance

How to Choose a 4K Camera

For you to shoot quality footage, you need to consider several factors besides resolution. Here are some of the factors up for consideration.

Image Sensor Size

Cameras have an image sensor that converts light into electrons. What you need to know is that with a bigger sensor, you get better videos.

However, this is not the only thing you need to look out for because in videography, there are many other factors that determine the video quality.

Zoom Ability

Sometimes when shooting a film, it will be necessary to show a subject up close and then zoom out to include their surroundings.

This can only be done by a solid zoom so if your camera does not have this ability, you can bet you will miss a lot.

Although there are two kinds of zoom, digital and optical, in filmmaking, optical zoom is the only one that matters.

Wireless Connectivity

Wireless connectivity should be a standard feature in all cameras but that is not the case. As a serious filmmaker, you want your camera to have wireless capabilities such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

With Bluetooth, you will be able to easily transfer your clips from your camera to other devices. Wi-Fi allows you to control your camera remotely using your phone.

This includes starting and stopping recording, adjusting exposure, focus point, and zoom. You will appreciate this feature particularly if you are shooting alone because then you will not need to run to and from your camera.

Size and Weight 

This is probably not a big consideration for most people but it does matter. If you will be carrying your camera for long distances, you want it to as lightweight as possible.

It is also important to consider the lens weight because although a camera may look light, all that can change once you attach the lens.

Disregard all this if you will be using a tripod to film.

Size: This is an important factor to consider if you will be carrying your camera around. You want something that you can easily tuck away once you are done shooting.

In that regard, you may want to get a camera that is slim and compact. Consider getting one that is fold able into a smaller size as well.

Again, if you will not be carrying your camera around and you are sure about its security, its size is not that much of an issue.

Audio Quality

Although most video cameras come with decent audio recording that includes a jack for microphone input, you may want to get a wired microphone for yours.

Why? Well, because it can make a considerable difference in the quality of your audio particularly on windy days or when many people are around.

This is a crucial factor to consider because even though 4K videos are impressive, they will be no good if they have poor audio quality.

Night Vision

You want your camera of choice to have this feature for those instances when you will be shooting in the night or under low light conditions.

Your video quality does not have to be poor simply because there wasn’t enough lighting at the time of shooting.

Why 4K?

4K resolution is impressive because it uses large video projectors and screen sizes to provide more details and less pixel visible images.

1080p looks amazing up to sixty-five inches and can still look good on larger screens. However, 4K can deliver better images as screen sizes continue to get bigger.

Regardless of screen size, resolution remains the same. However, as the screen increases in size, the number of pixels per inch changes.

What this means that pixels need to be spaced further apart or increased in size to maintain the same number of pixels on the screen.

What 4K Really Means for Users

4K cameras continue to gain popularity hence becoming readily available. These cameras deliver enhanced video display images for larger screen applications.

They can significantly minimize the likelihood of viewers seeing any pixel structure on the screen unless they are extremely close.

This translates to depth and smother edges. 4K has the ability to deliver almost as much depth as 3D without the need for glasses when combined with faster screen refresh rates.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

We believe you have a question or two in respect to this topic. To that effect, we have answered a few below that can be of help.

Is Ultra HD the same as 4k?

Technically, these are two different terms. Ultra HD refers to a resolution of 3,840 x 2,160 pixels. 4K on the other hand the other handechoes the fact that Ultra HD has four times as many pixels than the regular 1080p Full HD TV.

Which is better 4k or UHD?

4K originates from the cinema side where projectors are 4,096 pixels wide. 4K refers to 3,840 x 2,160 in the TV world.

It is also referred to as QuadHD for having a resolution of 4X 1080p. In that regard, Ultra HD is better.

Best Editorial Choice

Our best 4K camera for filmmaking is the Nikon DX-Format D500 Digital SLR Body. The camera has a robust and sturdy design. When it comes to performance, it allows to you shoot 4K quality videos at 30FPS. Above all, it has an extendable ISO which also makes it ideal for shooting in low-lit conditions.

Final Thoughts

Being able to shoot videos using 4K cameras has rapidly transformed from a special feature to a standard one.

Today, you will find this feature on most leading smartphones, and if you are on the lookout for a new camera, you can expect to find it on all cameras except the simple entry-level mirror less models.

Even with that, not all 4K cameras provide the same in terms of quality. Capture techniques, output possibilities, and different sensors make some 4K cameras better than others do by far.

Clearly, picking the best camera to shoot your film will not be an easy task but with this guide at hand, we are sure that you can make the right choice effortlessly.

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