Product photography is one of the most profitable styles of photography I have ever shot and if you are looking to do the same you will need a quality camera equiped for the specific needs of capturing images that sell.
Read on for the full product photography camera review or skip ahead for the best camera picks.
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They type of Product Photography you Shoot Tells You Which Camera is Best
There are so many types of product photography people shoot it is important to consider what you will be photographing before selecting your camera.
Photographers who will be snapping pictures for digital platforms like eBay and Etsy will not need to most advanced camera on the market but if you plan to shoot for marketing prints or stock photo sites then you will need a more powerful camera to achieve the necessary image quality.
Product Photography Camera Features You Need
Almost every product photographer will want to go with a mirrorless or DSLR camera body due to them having the essential features and setting to make you successful.
Use a camera with Full manual mode
While beginner photographers will feel the urge to shoot n auto mode (which most cameras will have) it is imperative that you learn to shoot in full manual mode to achieve professional image quality. By shooting in manual mode you will be able to make needed adjustments that even the best auto mode cameras can’t catch.
Because of this you must get a camera that allows you to take full control of the settings.
Another huge benefit of shooting in manual is that it improves your ability to get your images in perfect focus. This is particularly important when shooting products with fine detail. This will really help you make your pictures pop.
You will also be able to to improve the accuracy of your camera’s sensor. This is extremely important for those who are shooting objects that reflect light like jewelry and crystal. Full manual mode allows you to get those eye catching images by adjusting the ISO, aperture, and shutter speed to the perfect exposure for your particular product.
If you’re new to product photography and camera settings don’t feel overwhelmed. By getting one of the top camera models you will get the hang of these settings in no time and the results are well worth learning.
Don’t forget that the better the image quality, the more sales you will make.
Get Video For Eye Catching 360 Product Views
Even if you don’t think you will be taking videos now, you will likely find yourself wanting to in the near future. Many online and traditional sellers are adding video images to their product listings and by selecting a camera with high quality video capture you will be ready to take stunning product videos without having to invest in a second camera.
While most current camera models from the top makers will come with video capabilities it is important to remember that not all video capture achieves the quality needed for product video photography. Also keep in mind that not all older camera models even come with video capabilities.
All of the top picks on my list will provide you with the video quality and focus features needed to take product videos that sell great.
Select a Camera that Uses Interchangeable Lenses
You may be tempted to save money by getting a camera with a built in lens but do not do it!
Not all images will look good with the same product photography lens and it is very important that your camera allows you to use the lens that will make your images look their best. Most product photographers have multiple lenses and you won’t find any pro out there using a fixed lens camera for every product they shoot.
Let’s say you shoot jewelry one day, and the next you are shooting pottery. To get the shine and brilliance of gold and silver you will need a macro lens while the pottery will not necessarily need the power of the macro lens. By getting a camera body that allows you to change your lens you will never feel limited in your sessions. This is also true for shooting with your phone. You will quickly realize that a fixed lens limits your ability to capture professional level images.
Check my picks for the best product photography lenses
Best Product Photography Camera: Top Picks
Canon EOS 6D Mark II
- Perfect for professional product photography
- 26.2 megapixels is excellent for fine detailed images
- Excellent color quality
- Wide selection of great lenses
- Excellent value product photography camera
- 24.3 megapixels
- Good color quality
- Take quality product video
- One of my personal favorit product cameras
- 24.3 megapixels
- Exceptional image and color quality
- High quality video capture
- Professional image and color quality
- 24.2 megapixels
- Great autofocus
- Versatile camera that is fun to shoot
- Popular with professional photographers
- 16 megapixels
- Great auto focus
- Shoots in Raw and Raw+
Here is What the Top Product Photography Cameras Have in Common
While there are big differences in the details of each of the best cameras for product photography, there are some key features that they all share. Whether you pick one of my top picks or a model not listed, be certain your camera comes with these features so you can get the image quality you need.
Get a Camera with A High Megapxel Count
Put in the simplest terms possible, the more magapixels your camera has the better it is for product photography. Generally speaking a higher number means better image quality. You will have more post editing options which will allow you to get images that truly sell.
More megapixels also allow you for flexibility in cropping images while still being able to make large image prints. While a lower megapixel count means you have less ability to fine tune your photographs.
All of my top camera picks will give you the megapixel count needed for pro level product photography.
Low Light Performance is Important
I have shot countless product photography sessions and lighting is rarely ideal. And with product photography, poor lighting can seriously hurt your image quality if your camera isn’t equipped for handling low light conditions.
I have shot sessions with pro lighting all the way down to studios with no lighting but a couple household lamps. Luckily, a high quality camera can produce exceptional images under almost any lighting conditions.
The best product cameras offer lower noise when ISO is set higher. These cameras have sensitive sensors which provides you with the low noise, high ISO you want.
One of my favorite cameras when shooting in low light conditions is the Canon 5D Mark you will find above. It captured the image below, which I took in a home with nothing but household lighting.
Sometimes You will Want a Great Auto Focus Camera
While I highly recommend that you shoot your product photography in manual mode, there will be times that auto focus will come in handy. Because some challenging lighting situations are bound to happen, using manual mode can take too much time to get the settings perfect. When this happens to me I shamelessly turn auto focus on and get the shot. If you have a camera with a high quality auto focus you too can do this when the lighting is just too challenging.
This is particualry important when you have limited time to shoot your session. All of the top camera picks on my list will provide you with the auto focus you need to complete a fast session while still getting high quality images.
Keep Your Cameras Color Spectrum In Mind
One thing I love about cameras is the variety of ways one camera body interprests colors from another model. You will find that a higher end camera offers colors much more vibrant than any budget model on the market. This is particularly important for capturing the mood you need for the product you are shooting. Some bodies better provide warm and cold colors making it much easier to make your pictures catch the eye of a potential customer. Each of the picks above offer exceptional color quality.
Whether you select one of my top picks, or a different camera model keep the tips I outlined above in mind and you too can take pro product images. But if you do select one of my top rated picks you can’t go wrong whether you are doing traditional print or digital product photography. These five camera systems offer everything you need to get great shots quick and easy.