Best Macro Camera

If you are searching for the best camera for macro photography you have come to the right place.

I love shooting macro and have been lucky enough to get to use a ton cameras over the years. Not all cameras are able to produce the results you want but after reading this article you will know which camera to invest in for capturing amazing macro images.

Check the quick list below for links to customer reviews and prices for the top rated macro photography cameras or read on for the full review

  1. Canon EOS 5D Mk IV
  2. Nikon D850
  3. Nikon D500
  4. Ricoh GR III
  5. Nikon D5600
  6. Canon EOS Rebel T6i
  7. Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX10
  8. Sony RX10 Mark III
  9. Nikon COOLPIX W300
  10. Olympus TG-6

Best Macro Cameras

Canon EOS 5D Mk IV with 100mm f/2.8L IS USM Macro Lens

This Canon is one of the company’s high-end cameras, and it makes macro photography simple. It allows you to create incredibly sharp images, and it has a lot of great features to make macrophotography easy to accomplish. When you combine it with this 100mm lens by Canon, you get a fixed focal length of 100mm.

This lens shoots sharp images because it has a Hybrid Image Stabilization feature. This allows you to use it in low-light situations. It has an Ultrasonic Motor that helps it focus quickly, silently, and accurately, and it has a maximum magnification of 1:1. Your subjects will be the same size as your camera sensor. It can have a shallow depth of field with amazing bokeh. It is quiet, which helps you shoot subjects such as insects without frightening them away.

This lens offers excellent optical quality and it brings out the smallest details in your subjects. You will be able to explore macrophotography and photograph the smallest subjects with this camera and lens combination.

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Pros:

  • Incredible image quality
  • Offers true macro 1:1 magnification
  • Quiet operation
  • Built-in Hybrid Image Stabilization
  • Lightweight

Cons:

  • It is an expensive set up

Nikon D850 with AF-S VR Micro-NIKKOR 105mm f/2.8G Lens

Nikon users consider this combination to be one of the best on the market for macro photography. It has a VR image stabilization system that reduces vibration of the lens and camera shake. You get sharp images from a fast focusing lens, and it takes stunning macro photos with a shallow depth of field. It gives you incredible low-light results and a beautiful background blur. You will capture all of the details in your subjects with ease when you use this lens.

The D850 has a very low base ISO of 64, so you can capture incredible details. The sensor is backside illuminated and full-frame, and it gives you 45.7 megapixels. You get a quality image, efficiency in light gathering, and truer color with this camera. It has a number of other great features, including autofocus, speedlight control, a long battery life, a silent photography mode, and more. You can take incredible macro photos with this camera.

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Pros:

  • This is an excellent high-end camera and lens combination for macro photography
  • It has Vibration Reduction.
  • You can shoot in silent mode.
  • It works great in low-light settings.
  • It has the ability to produce 1:1 magnification.

Cons:

  • It is an expensive set up.

Nikon D500 with AF-S DX Micro-NIKKOR 40mm f/2.8G Lens

The Nikon D500 is a professional grade camera, and it has a 20.9 megapixel CMOS sensor. It’s a midrange DSLR, and it produces excellent image quality. It has an autofocus system with 153 AF points, which allows you to capture your subject in a sharp, clear image. It has an ISO range from 100 to 51,200, so it can shoot in low-light settings. It is not very noisy, so you will not frighten your subjects.

The 40mm lens is a consumer-grade lens that is affordable and performs well. It is silent when it autofocuses on your subjects. It produces nice bokeh, and it creates sharp images throughout the entire frame. You can get 1:1 magnification with this lens, and it is best suited for shooting flowers, food, and other subjects where you have a little distance between the lens and the subject. Nikon made this lens as a lower cost alternative to other macro lenses, and it can also be used to shoot portraits.

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Pros:

  • It is a midrange camera and lens combination, which makes it more affordable.
  • It has good image quality
  • It is versatile and can shoot portraits as well.
  • It has 1:1 magnification.
  • It can shoot in low light

Cons:

  • It doesn’t do a great job shooting super tiny subjects at close range

Ricoh GR III

This camera is a compact digital camera with a 24MP CMOS sensor that can take sharp and clear photos. It has a macro mode, which you can use for your macro photography. The shooting distance is 6cm to 12cm in macro mode, and if you are shooting flowers or another similar subject, you can place the camera close and take the photos. You need to hold it steady, but you can capture stunning details of insects, flowers, and other small subjects.

It has a touchscreen, and you can change the focus by touching it. It can also track moving objects, such as insects or drops of water. You can increase the magnification by using the Crop Mode on the camera, and it creates soft, beautiful bokeh. It does a great job of capturing the details of your subjects, and the small size of the camera makes it easy to use. You can take great close up photographs with this compact camera.

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Pros:

  • Compact and lightweight camera with macro mode
  • Track subjects on the touchscreen
  • You can hold camera 6cm to 12cm from subject
  • It produces soft, beautiful bokeh

Cons:

  • It is hard to keep your subject in the narrow in-focus area

Nikon D5600 with AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR Lens

This is an upper entry level camera by Nikon, and you can get it in a kit with the lens. It has a 24.2 MP DX format CMOS sensor, and it is a lightweight DSLR camera. It produces excellent image quality, with sharp, crisp images, and it has good resolution as well. It has a phase detect autofocus system, which has 39 focus points. It also does well with low light. The camera offers a lot of great features and the ability to shoot macro at an affordable price.

The lens is an 18-55mm lens. The features that make it a less expensive lens for other types of photography make it a great choice for macro photography. At 18mm, it can reach a magnification of nearly 4:1, so you can photograph very small subjects and bring out stunning details. When you move it to 55mm, you still have magnification of 1:1. This makes it a versatile lens for macro photography. The image quality is great, and this is a great option for an entry level macro camera.

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Pros:

  • Up to 4:1 magnification
  • It is affordable and versatile
  • It is lightweight and easy to use
  • It produces sharp crisp images

Cons:

  • Viewfinder only offers 95% coverage

Canon EOS Rebel T6i with 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM Lens

This 24.2 MP Canon camera has a CMOS sensor with ISO starting at 100. It has a powerful Digic 6 processor that helps to reduce graininess. You get high speed continuous shooting up to 50 frames per second, so you can take a number of photos to make sure you get the ideal macro shot. It has a 19-point autofocus, which allows you to follow your subject if it moves.

The 18-55mm lens has a 9.9-inch minimum focus distance, and it can create a reproduction magnification of 1:3. You might notice a bit of softer focus on the edges, which can lead to some blurring. It has image stabilization, which is great to prevent camera shake and allow you to shoot close up. You might have an easier time shooting close up by using the manual focus mode. This is a versatile camera and lens, and you can take great macro shots.

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Pros:

  • This is an affordable camera and lens set up
  • It has image stabilization
  • 24.2 MP resolution for clear images
  • High speed continuous shooting

Cons:

  • You do get softer focus on the edges when you shoot close up

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX10/LX15

This camera by Panasonic is a 20.1 MP digital camera with a one-inch sensor, and it has a lot of features packed into its smaller size. You can shoot seven frames per second in autofocus, so you can follow your subject and take great macro shots. It doesn’t have a viewfinder; it actually offers a touchscreen where you can view your subject. It has a solid metal body and is well made, and it contains a high-quality 8.8-26.4mm lens.

The lens has a fast aperture of f/1.4 to f/2.8, and this iris has nine blades, which allows nice bokeh. The minimum focusing distance is 3cm with AF macro wide angle, so it is easy to get a close-up shot. It produces images with true color, and it offers in-camera RAW processing. The ISO goes as low as 125, so it offers pretty sharp photos. This compact camera is sturdy and can take good macro photos.

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Pros:

  • Small and durable
  • It has great image stabilization
  • Excellent realistic color
  • Fast focus and capture speed
  • Excellent focusing abilities
  • Great close-up shots for macro

Cons:

  • Can get warm with constant use

Sony RX10 Mark III

This camera by Sony offers a great option for enthusiasts, and it has a 20MP one-inch type stacked CMOS sensor. It has a 24-600mm lens, which is more than most offer. You can get close shots from quite a distance with this lens. Your photos come out sharp no matter what distance you use. It might not give you a true macro photo from a distance, but it can take a very close up shot with details.

It has a nine blade aperture, but the large AF area can cause it to focus on the wrong part of the subject, so you need to take a lot of photos to get the shot you are looking for. It is a versatile camera that you can use in many different situations, and you can use it for macro because it will produce excellent close-up shots. It has built-in stabilization, a great viewfinder, and it can track subjects that are moving or shoot them when they are still. It works in any type of light, and it can do just about anything you want a camera to do.

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Pros:

  • Versatile camera with 24-600mm lens
  • Excellent close-up shots from a distance
  • Works in any type of light
  • Shoots fast
  • Great macro ability

Cons:

  • AF area is large and can focus on the wrong part of the subject

Nikon COOLPIX W300

This is a great all around camera with a lot of features. It has a 16MP sensor, an excellent 5X zoom, and it is rugged and waterproof. It includes built-in GPS, a barometer, and a compass. The zoom is operated with your thumb, and it has a bright touchscreen. It has good balance between the brightness and the zoom, and it has a range of 24-120mm.

Its closest focus distance is 1cm at the wide angle setting, which means that you can get very close to your subjects to shoot macro photos. The bottom point on the four-way controller in Auto shooting mode puts you in macro mode. It also works in other modes, such as Pet Portrait, underwater, and Smart Portrait. You can use the zoom in macro mode, but you need to move further away. The zoom will not increase the magnification.

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Pros:

  • Rugged and waterproof with a lot of features
  • Easy to operate and large touchscreen
  • Macro mode is easy to use
  • 1cm distance from subjects
  • Added features include built-in GPS, compass, barometer, and more
  • 5x zoom of 24-120mm

Cons:

  • At close distances, be careful of casting shadows

Olympus TG-6

This is another rugged and waterproof compact camera, and it has a lot of great features. It has a Variable Macro System that allows you to expand your macro photography. The macro system contains four different shooting modes and two accessories for close-up shooting. Microscope mode can photograph subjects from just 1cm away, and you can zoom in for a view that is not available to the naked eye. It also has microscope control mode, where you can continue to magnify your subject by touching the screen.

Focus stacking is a mode where you can capture different images by focusing on different focal positions, and focus bracketing allows you to shoot a burst of up to 30 photos at once. With all of these great possibilities, this is a great camera for macro photography. It also offers two accessories that will enhance your macro photography, a light diffuser and an LED light guide.

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Pros:

  • Lightweight and rugged camera
  • Waterproof, shockproof, dustproof, freezeproof
  • It has a Variable Macro System with four modes of macro photography
  • Accessories are available to enhance macro photography
  • Excellent image quality
  • High resolution and 4x zoom lens

Cons:

  • Low resolution sensor (12MP)

What Is Macro Photography?

Macro photography is becoming more and more popular because the technology is there to make it easy. You can take stunning photos of tiny objects, such as insects, water droplets on a flower, jewelry, and more, and you will capture incredible details that aren’t always visible to the naked eye. It is close-up photography of small objects, and you can do it outdoors or in the studio. Usually, your subjects will appear as life size or larger due to the magnification. To accomplish this, your subject needs to be smaller than the size of your camera sensor.

Understanding Magnification

Macro photography is all about the magnification, which is the size your subject appears in the image as opposed to in real life. You can use 1:1 magnification, and this means that your subject will be the same size in real life as it is in the image. Some cameras and lenses have 1:2 magnification, so the subject will be half of life size. If the magnification is 5:1, that means it will be five times life size. Generally speaking, when you shoot macro photography, you want a magnification that is at least 1:2, but 1:1 is ideal.

Your Working Distance

Ladybird macro detail on leaf

The working distance is critical in macro photography. It refers to the distance between your camera and the subject. If you get too close to your subject, you can end up with too much blur or block the natural light. Normally, you want to be about six inches from your subject to shoot macro.

Your working distance is also dependent on the magnification level. If you are shooting 1:1, you need to be pretty close so that the subject fills your camera sensor. Your lens will play a role in your working distance. If your lens has a longer focal length, you can have a larger working distance.

Choosing a Macro Lens

One component of macro photography is your lens. There are a lot of different options, although a dedicated macro lens is always the obvious choice. However, a 50mm lens can also take macro shots. Macro lenses come in different focal lengths, which essentially tells you your working distance. If you take pictures of a poisonous insect and want to stay far away, you will want a lens with a longer focal length. These lenses range from 20mm to 200mm, so you can choose the length that is best for your subject matter.

If you plan to shoot products or other inanimate objects in the studio, you can use a macro lens with a focal length of 45mm to 65mm. If you are shooting insects or flowers outdoors, you might want a longer focal length of 90mm to 105mm. You have a lot of options depending on what you want to shoot.

Choosing a Camera for Macro

You have a lot of choices when it comes to cameras for macro photography. In fact, many point and shoot cameras have a macro mode, and you can get macro lenses for your mobile phone as well. If you choose a DSLR camera, the macro setting comes from the lens you use. This type of camera might offer a higher resolution, and you can choose between full frame sensors and crop sensors. You can also shoot macro with a mirrorless lens. No matter what your budget is, you will be able to find a camera to shoot macro photography.

Other Factors in Macro Photography

In addition to the camera and the lens, you need to consider exposure, depth of field, and lighting. The depth of field is determined by the aperture, or the f-stop. When the f number is bigger, the aperture is small, which allows you to take high-quality shots up close.

Whether you use natural lighting or an artificial flash, you want to have brilliant light so that your subject stands out. You will get better shots with a higher ISO and a slower shutter speed. The depth of field is what causes the camera to focus on the subject and make your image clear and sharp.

Macro photography is mostly about the magnification of the subject. You will be able to see stunning details of tiny subjects, and it can create an entirely new vision of what exists in the world. You can photograph a centipede or a droplet of water, and it shows you details that you can’t see with your naked eye. You can get very creative with macro photography as long as you have a good camera and lens.

Conclusion

  1. Canon EOS 5D Mk IV
  2. Nikon D850
  3. Nikon D500
  4. Ricoh GR III
  5. Nikon D5600
  6. Canon EOS Rebel T6i
  7. Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX10
  8. Sony RX10 Mark III
  9. Nikon COOLPIX W300
  10. Olympus TG-6

If you are interested in macro photography, you need a camera with a lens that can get up close to your subjects. The magnification will let you know how close to real life your image will be. True macro is 1:1, where the image is the same size as the subject. The Canon EOS 5D Mark IV is a fantastic camera for shooting macro if it fits within your budget. You can take any photo you like with this camera and lens combination, and you will always capture the finest details. If you are looking for a compact and rugged model, the Olympus TG-5 is a great choice. Its four modes for macro photography give you control over the types of macro photos you shoot.

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