Best Camera Under 500 for 2018: The New Year List (Updated)

People often send us emails about their dilemma while choosing the best camera under 500.

We know this is a very tough decision to make. Because different cameras have different features and you can't get all your required features within a single camera.

But after reading this article you'll be completely stress free because we've already done deep researches on different dslr camera prices and models.

In that case, only a less expensive camera can give you the comfort of tension free rough using. That’s why we are suggesting you to purchase the best DSLR under 500 dollar which also called as entry-level digital SLR.

We believe, you're gonna have your answer within next few minutes!

Canon EOS Rebel T6

If you really want a budget camera then Canon EOS Rebel T6 could be the best and wisest choice for you.

Comparison of Top 5 Best Camera Under 500

Model Name




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Nikon D5200

Nikon D5200

100 - 3​​​​200

14.2 mp

1.3 lbs

Canon EOS Rebel T6

Canon EOS Rebel T6

100 - 12800

18 mp

1.53 lbs

Nikon D3300

Nikon D3300

100 - 12800

24.2 mp

145 lbs

Canon EOS Rebel T5

Canon EOS Rebel T5

100 - 12800

18 mp

1.51 lbs

Best Dslr Camera Under 500

Nikon D3100

100 - 6400

24.1 mp

1.11 lbs

In terms of our photography experience, we've listed 7 top rated DSLR cameras under 500 dollars for you in 2018. We know there are lots more other top level digital cameras in the market.

But these cameras are being chosen in terms of their price, quality, ease of learning etc. factors. So that anyone who wants to start learning digital photography basics can handle very easily only by spending a little penny.

Detail Overview of The Top Dslr Cameras

As the quality of photo also depends on the lens we’ll suggest you to use a good quality prime lens with this 24.1 megapixel camera. Since, the camera is already high configured, so a good lens will help you to crop the image to high value and then create a new composition with the same image.

In terms of file size, a photo is generally 25-30 megabytes standard. The camera has the only single SD card slot. So it’s better choosing 16, 32 or 64 GB SD card.

And don’t use low-speed SD cards for saving a little money because the quality of taken photos is depended on the memory speed also.

Nikon D5200

Nikon D5200

This best affordable camera is compatible with WLAN Adaptor WU-1a to transmit images from the camera to Apple or Android or tablet with remote shooting control.

The auto-focus is 39 point AF with nine cross-type senses which has an awesome performance & this is really a big update of this model from the previous nikon cameras.

 And actually, this can be considered as a great feature of this camera. So, if you wanna grab a best dslr camera under 500 then you may choose that one easily!

  • The biggest feature is, auto-focus which made it suitable for steady landscape to dynamic sports photos.
  • For video recordings, the sound quality is really great.
  • The LCD display is very user friendly!
  • It goes to 1080p ti4 video & there is no 60p. It's a major con of this model.

For entry level digital slr photography, especially for the beginners who just upgraded themselves from mobile photography to DSLR can have a look on Canon EOS Rebel T6 review.

Though many people will recommend Canon 700D or Nikon D5600 for beginners, this model deserves a look before starting your photography career. With a relatively low price, you can get tons of beginner level features if you choose this one.

Canon EOS Rebel T6

Canon EOS Rebel T6

Before proceeding to pros & con we would like to feature the following features:

  • The camera has Digic 4+ image processor & being combined with the 18 megapixel image sensor it works incredibly fine.
  • It has both Wi-Fi & NFC capabilities those have increased it connectivity than other similar models.
  • The model is especially designed for beginners. So, if you want to go a long way in photography step by step then you must choose this one.
  • You can transfer of data to other devices such as computers and smartphones.
  • The 18 megapixel high resolution sensor can capture awesome photos in different situation like: portrait or landscape, short or long distance etc.
  • The dot value of LCD resolution is 921k which can sharpen colors more effectively.
  • ISO level is 12,800 max. For low light photography this camera is gem.
  • For videography, you’ll get 1920 x 1080 resolution with a decent FPS value.
  • It has both built in optical viewfinder and face detection feature that can help you to capture your object with less distraction.
  • For continuous shooting the value is 3.0 fps & the AEB range is a bit low which is ±2 E. But it's not a big deal.

Finally, you are going to get flash sync port, top LCD display and other beginner level features those will introduce with the basic techniques of photography.

There are tons of reasons for writing a positive Nikon 3400 review.  For instance, it has lightweight body, user-friendly design, easiest control feature, cool connectivity options and so on. And according to the opinion of photography experts:

“For an absolute beginner, Nikon D3400 is one of the best digital camera under 500 which is also a great releases of Nikon. And if you compare this model to other models or brands, then in terms of reasonable budget and features, you’ll see Nikon D3400 is the best camera for under 500 in 2018.”

Before going to the features & benefits below, you need to know a notable change in this model. And that is two mode dialer functions: Guide & Effects. And using the guide mode you can learn step by step assistance in your photography journey with Nikon D3400.

Additionally, the ‘Effects’ mode will help you to get creative during capturing your moments. Another thing you need to know is the lens performance with the body, which is better than similar type cameras.

So, now let’s dive into the features, benefits, pros & cons of Nikon D3400.

Some Features and Benefits:

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    You can connect your Nikon D3400 to any of your Bluetooth mobile devices. It will help you to share your photos instantly to the whole world.
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    It’s APS-C sized CMOS sensor can capture photos in 24.2 megapixels and videos in 1080p HD. For 1080p videos, it can maintain 60 frames per second.
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    The camera contains 11-point AF system. It helps you to focus your object more easily and clearly.
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    This camera has 5 FPS burst image shooting feature. It maintains constant quality for the total series of images.
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    It can take approximately 1200 shots battery life which is more than 700 shots of Nikon D3300 and 440 shots of Canon 750D.
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    For meter mode lovers, this camera offers 420-pixel 3D color matrix mode. It is a big change compared to 63 zones of Canon 1300D or similar cameras.
  • Extensive battery life.
  • Snapbridge Feature Included.
  • Easy integrated DSLR controls to make it more user-friendly.
  • Auto Focus performance for a single shot is very good.
  • A large variation of mode controls is available.
  • Fixed and non-touch sensitive screen.
  • No Wi-Fi or microphone port.
  • Optical viewfinder coverage is poor.

So, finally maybe you are thinking why we are putting an above 500 USD camera model within best DSLR camera for money sections. But in terms of features and benefits this one is really cool.

Additionally, there are lots of certified refurbished and used cameras online those you can check also. These cameras are being sold under 500 USD. So, if you can’t raise your budget above 500 USD, then go for a used product. But still you will have the best affordable camera.

This is an all-rounder nikon camera for entry level photographer. You can take limitless photos in different environments by this camera.

The ultra-compact AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR II Nikon D3300 1532 body is small & easily portable. Besides, you can capture your moment in 24.2 mega-pixels and take motion graphics with its 1080p video mode.

The D3300 received a Technical Image Press Association (TIPA) award in the category "Best Digital SLR Entry Level".

It contains 3 inch LCD with 921,000 dots, 1 AF points with 3D tracking, ISO 100-12800 (expandable to 25600) which has made it quite good to handle.

In addition, you can share all your captured photos & taken videos to your smartphone or tablet instantly using the WU – 1a wireless adapter. It’ll make your photos easier to share with your friends through social media, email or Bluetooth sharing.

Nikon D3300

Nikon D3300

The camera supports almost all the common and advanced mode of photography. As a result, you can take a simple shot to advanced panorama by this device.

 If you want to take a photo where your object will be clear and the background blurred or if you want to capture some wedding moments or for travel and nightlife photography you’ll feel no difficulties using this camera.

Besides, you can switch between Nikon 3300 1532 to 1533 within a small price gap. You can also try Nikon 3300 1533, which is also the best affordable dslr camera.

  • The kit lens size reduction makes camera very easy to handle.
  • Burst mode feature is very impressive.
  • It can take continuous high-resolution photos for a long time without any performance drop.
  • Price tag is really reasonable in terms of configuration.
  • In low ISO settings, noise occurs.

This is an awesome digital slr camera under budget . By this cheap price, the camera will give you a better portability & higher ergonomics.

This model has some stylish features like:

1) It has a rubber pad behind the body so that your fingers feel comfort during dialing.

2) Turning on and off is very quick in this camera.

3) In addition, the camera has standard TV’s HDMI input, mini USB, and a proprietary GPS Mount.

Now about the flash performance. Flash performance is really very good in terms of price & other near models. The flash is smart enough to detect the environment & your photos will not be burned or blurred due to flash.

Best Budget Camera Under 500

Nikon D3100

The default 18-55 lens is as usual & has the options of auto-focus, vibration reduction But if you want to invest some more money, then you can go for a prime lens which is recommended but not mandatory. The default lens works fine.

For your information, in this price, you'll get an 18-55mm VR lens by default. In addition, If you love to have a tele-zoom lens, we will suggest you to pick a 55-200mm Non-VR lens. To avail this opportunity, you have to extend your budget a little bit. But still you'll have the best digital camera under 400 along with a couple of lenses!

  • The photo quality of this camera is really awesome. Even under 800 ISO settings, the camera performs fine. The color reproduction is really notable.
  • You can take a 1080p camera with 24 to 30 frame per second. Besides, you can also perform basic video edits inside the camera.
  • The photo quality of this camera is really awesome. Even under 800 ISO settings, the camera performs fine. The color reproduction is really notable.
  • It contains default guide mode for users.
  • You can’t mount a microphone on top of the camera. Besides, there is no microphone input point.
  • Small viewfinder.

In this model canon added almost every option of its T3 model. So the camera looks new, but actually, it’s an upgrade version of canon T3. By its 18 megapixel camera with digit four 4 image processor you can take 1080. You can take up to 3 burst photos a second & in case of 1080p videos you can take 24 to 30 frames a second. For your information, this is one of the cheap dslr camera for less than 500.

Another thing you must remember, megapixels are just a part of digital camera specification and the quality of the image doesn’t depend entirely on it.

Rather physical size of the sensor plays the vital role where the larger size sensor gives the clearer & sharper photos.

Canon EOS Rebel T 05 model is another best dslr camera under 500 which contains an aps-c size sensor which ensures six to eight times larger photos than the same megapixel point & shoot camera.

Canon EOS Rebel T5 Digital SLR Camera

Canon EOS Rebel T5

Canon EOS Rebel T5

As a result, the camera is more color accurate & beautiful and also very easy to print on large size paper. Besides, the default lens gives very good performance & the glass quality of the total camera is admirable as well.

  • In contains on screen shooting guide.
  • In high ISO settings the camera takes nice captures which will soothe your heart.
  • Price tag is reasonable & very easy to operate especially for beginners.
  • Included optically stabilized lens.
  • The quality of its 1080p videos are very better than normal cameras. It's a big plus point of the camera.
  • The view finder is small & dim. The LCD is fixed & highly reflective which makes it extremely hard to see in sunlight.

7. Canon Rebel T5 Review (Refurbished) - Best dslr Camera Under 500

If you've already liked Canon Rebel T5, but you don't have enough money to purchase one for you then I'll suggest you to purchase a refurbished version of same product. You may become confused about the performance in this case. I was also confused for one of my camera models.

But after purchasing the refurbished one I got good performance. Yah! sometimes it performed a little slow. But overall I am happy and my suggestion will be for the refurbished one for saving your penny. I think, you can consider it as the best camera under 500 as well.

Canon EOS Rebel T5 (Refurbished)

Canon EOS Rebel T5 (Refurbished)

  • All the Pros of Canon Rebel T 05 which is discussed above.
  • Lower price.
  • On refurbished device usually the performance depends on luck. As the camera is renovated, so there may be some performance issue. But it'll not happen on every device.

Things Before Buying a Digital SLR Camera - 5 Must Read Tips for Beginners 

In the above discussion, we've analyzed traits of 7 best DSLR cameras under 500. But before buying any types and brands of cameras, there are some common tips and tricks to check common parameters. It'll help you not only for getting started to understand a camera but also for switching between the models and upgrading the current models for better photography. Now, let's stroll into the factors. 



Size of Sensor

This is the most important feature of a DSLR camera, though most of the time photographers look for megapixels only. But before buying an camera, you must know there is a image sensor inside every camera which records your capture & then sends it to your memory card. The bigger the viewfinder is, the better the photo quality will be. 

The camera with largest sensor size is called the full frame camera. The size of full frame sensor is 35mm * 24 mm which makes the photo clear & sharp. But full frame cameras are comparatively costly. That's why most of the beginner level camera designed with crop sensors those are smaller in size and cheaper in price.​

Body Features 

The basic feature is, of course the size because of better portability. But technically your camera body is capable of doing many operations.

In case of modes, maximum cameras have action, night, travel, landscape or sports photography features. Again, some cameras have more features like panorama, auto scene intelligence, auto face detection, built-in guide etc. 

Besides, LCD display has many factors to consider. Some LCDs are fine to your camera & some are swivel. Swivel leverages self recording through your camera. In addition, some LCD displays are highly reflective. These displays perform lower in high sunlight & give your eyes comfort during night photo shoot. By the way, for night photoshoot, if you are looking for a budget friendly camera you should do some research to pick the best digital camera under 500.


Technically megapixels are the dots those compose your photo. It means if you make your photos smaller, the dots will be nearer & the photo will look more clear. Again if you zoom your photo, the bigger the photo will be the distance between the dots will be that higher.

Now if your camera has lower megapixels then your photo will be blur & cluttered in the big display. So in a nutshell megapixel determines the sharpness of your photo. This is the main factor & may be the only factor why you need a good megapixel camera. 

But there are some myths in the market that the greater the megapixel, the better the camera is. This is a misleading concept because the quality depends mainly on the size of the image sensor.

And keep remember in most of the digital SLR camera, the given megapixels are more than enough. But if you are a big pro in photo industry and want to mount your photos on billboard then megapixels may be a big factor to consider. Otherwise, don't mess a lot with it. 


Almost every beginner and mid level cameras contain a packaged lens which is called the kit lens. The most common lens is 18-55 mm.

Besides, some models offer 50 mm prime lens and even some models offer telephoto lens also. But as a beginner we suggest you to be happy with an 18-55 mm kit lens. It is enough for basic and basic plus level photography. 

After purchasing your camera you can later change your lens. The most common, after 18-55 mm lens is 18-135 mm lens by which you can enlarge your range to more distance.

In that case, you can do another work. If you have some extra cash in your pocket then replace the 18-55 mm to an 18 - 135 mm lens. As a result, you can do the same work of 18 - 55 mm ​and the rest distance is your bonus. 

Video Feature

The most common video resolutions are 720p, 1080p in HD and 480p in non-HD camera. It's true these ratings defines your video quality.

But you must also research on the frame rate before choosing your camera. For example, suppose one of your chosen cameras can capture 1080p videos. But it can't take more than 30 frames per seconds. In that case, your video will be nice for landscape photo. But for sports photos, where your objects move faster, these FPS will fail you. 

So, if you are sports videographer & purchase a 1080p cam with a lower fps then you can't fulfill your criteria. Again if you just want to take landscape photo then you don't even look for a 30 fps camera. In that case 24 fps is more than enough for making you happier.  

Final Verdict

So in a nutshell, the core message of the above discussion is, you can choose any of our recommended cameras in terms of your necessity and budget. And after a few months when you'll have a good expertise on digital photography basics, then try to purchase new a lens, accessories and other camera kits to add your photos some extra value. After 1 - 1.5 years look for a new advance level camera those will be compatible with all the kits & accessories for at least after 5 years of your camera purchase. That's all.