If you’re opting for wildlife photography, your wallet is in for a real ride. It is arguably the most expensive genre you could choose. You won’t only be travelling far away and wide, but you need a lot of gear to carry with you if you’re aiming for great shots.
Wildlife photography will require that you have a camera that’s tough against different elements. But that’s without compromising speed, resolution and overall image quality. Don’t let the price discourage you, though, because this photography genre is also one of the most satisfying.
Depending on where you plan to go, there are DSLR cameras that can be considered your best choices. Some of them are included below.
Best Professional DSLR Camera for Wildlife Photography
Its predecessor had been regarded a nocturnal beast because of its ability to “tame” the night where light is scarce. And with a lot of improvements, the Nikon D4S is named a “low-light monster.” Compared to the Nikon D4, its grip is deeper and the buttons are much easier to press. Ergonomically, the portrait mode has been taken into account. Nikon has, in fact, redesigned the grip on the portrait orientation, thanks to the better thumbrest. There is also that new battery, promised to give you about 400 extra shots. The speed is 10 times faster, too, which made professionals say “yeah” to this Nikon DSLR camera.
Here are its other features as well:
- 16-megapixel sensor coupled with Expeed 4 processor, which Nikon claims to have improved the camera’s performance.
- Group Area AF Mode that helps with tracking and continuous autofocus, which works a treat for professional wildlife photographers who love moving animals as subjects.
- 11 frames per second and 10 FPS for its default mode, enabling the camera to provide 200 jpgs and 104 RAW. This is particularly a great feature when you’re shooting running and flying animals and you need the flexibility of long bursts without bulking up on the file size.
Bottom line: This is is a complete beast you need to take to the wild.
Best Enthusiast DSLR Camera for Wildlife Photography
The Nikon D7100 may look almost identical with its predecessor, the Nikon D7000. But don’t let the similiraties in the body fool you. There are major improvements that have been packed into the D7100. For starter, it is powered with a 24.1-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor and an ISO sensitivity range of 100-6400, which can be boosted up to 25600. Another notable characteristic of this sensor is the removal of the optical low-pass filter, rendering images sharper and greater than when they are taken with this camera’s predecessor.
Color accuracy and details are really impressive when you use the Nikon D7100. Its low-light performance is class-leading and striking as well. Additionally, it focuses fast and accurately. It allows you to shoot at a burst rate of about six frames per second at 24 megapixels. You can even get a faster rate if you lower down the megapixel count to 15. Add to that its rich shooting modes, and you’ll love taking this camera with you in the wild! There are four automodes designed for beginners and four auto without the flash. There are also the pro shooting modes, including Program, Shutter Priority, Aperture Priority and Full Manual. There are even a couple of fully programmable positions, a scene mode and a special effects mode. Indeed, it is a whole package you’d want to shoot with.
Best Beginner DSLR Camera for Wildlife Photography
The Nikon D5500 has received many praises across the photography world, and it isn’t hard to see why. It boasts a 24.2 megapixel APS-C sized (DX format) sensor that has no anti-aliasing filter, which makes it better able to resolve detail than those with an optical low pass filter. It also features EXPEED 4 processor and a 3.2 inch 1,037,000-dot LCD screen on a vari-angle bracket. Additionally, this camera model is made from a single piece of material. However, at 124x97x70mm and 420g (body only) the new camera is lighter and slimmer than its predecessor, the D5300.
When it comes to image quality, the D5500 doesn’t disappoint. Images are good, with pleasing tones and color vibrancy. Low light performance is also good, with not too much noise appearing at higher sensitivities. We also love its articulating touch-screen, built-in Wifi and 39-point AF system. Overall, we can say, that it is ideal as your first DSLR, or perhaps as an upgrade from a much older model.
Best Entry-Level DSLR Camera for Wildlife Photography
The Nikon D3300 may be marketed as entry-level, but it can do so much more than entry-level works. It is yet another good choice for beginners who have very limited knowledge on DSLR camera manual controls. It offers the same 24.2 million-pixel count as the D3200, its predecessor, but omits the optical low-pass filter over the sensor. This allows the camera to capture sharper, more detailed images. Moreover, it has the latest generation processing engine: EXPEED 4. This allows the new camera to shoot continuously at a maximum rate of 5fps up to 100 fine quality JPEGs. Additionally, the native sensitivity range runs from ISO 100 to 12,800 and there’s an expansion setting that takes it to the equivalent of ISO 25,600. This means that the camera performs great in low light.
Its processing engine is also commendable, as it allows the camera to record Full HD movie footage at framerates up to 50p/60p and with continuous autofocus. Fortunately, there’s a microphone port as well as a built-in stereo mic for better sound recording during movie shooting. This engine also enables the camera to be more efficient in its power consumption, and the battery is claimed to last for around 700 shots. With its high resolution it satisfies those who crave megapixels without skimping on image quality. It is indeed an excellent buy for those who want to purchase their first DSLR.