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The Best Camera for Newborn Photography in 2023

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Newborns don’t stay new very long. So photographing those first few weeks of life is critical. But what are the best cameras for newborn photography? This article helps you find the best camera for newborn photography.

Maybe you’re looking to take professional baby photographs. Or perhaps you are looking for the best camera as a new parent… We have selected the Nikon D5600 as the best camera for newborn photography. This is thanks to an effective sensor, fantastic autofocus, and a solid ISO range.

Nikon D5600
Nikon D5600
Capture stunning newborn photos with this versatile digital camera perfect for beginners.
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The Best Camera for Newborn Photography

Here are our top choices of the best cameras for newborn photography. Below the table, you will find an in-depth look at each camera option. Then you can read our helpful guide on points to consider when photographing babies.

Camera Name
Why We Love It
Buy From
Nikon D5600
Our Top Choice
  • Very high 24.2 MP resolution for a crop sensor
  • Fast and reliable autofocus system with 39 focus points
  • Great ISO sensitivity for low light
  • Small in size and ergonomic
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Canon EOS Rebel T8i / 850D
Best Canon DSLR
  • Ver high 24 MP resolution for a crop sensor
  • Autofocus automatically detects your subjects eyes
  • Excellent ISO range and great in low-light situations
  • 4K video and 120 fps Full HD
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Sony a7 IV
Best for Pros
  • Incredible image resolution
  • Fast and reliable autofocus system
  • 5.5 stops of image stabilization
  • Powerful video abilities, 4K at 60 fps
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Fujifilm X-T30 II
Most Stylish
  • Affordable camera for its abilities
  • Achieves up to 30 fps continuous shooting
  • Compact and light
  • Great selection of lenses
  • Stylish design
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Nikon Z6 II
Best Nikon Mirrorless
  • Autofocus works amazingly in low-light conditions
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Excellent dynamic range in low-light environments
  • Dual memory card slots
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Canon EOS R
Best Canon Mirrorless
  • Incredible autofocus system that you can trust
  • ISO range performs well at both ends of the scale
  • Light and ergonomic body
  • Responsive and articulating touchscreen
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Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark II
Best Compact Choice
  • Compact camera that can capture RAW images
  • Fast and accurate autofocus system
  • Optical image stabilization
  • Includes a wide aperture and long zoom
  • Wi-Fi connectivity

1. Nikon D5600

Nikon D5600
Sensor Format APS-C
Lens Mount Nikon F DX
Megapixels 24.2 MP
Autofocus Points 39
Maximum ISO 25,600
Frame Rate 5 fps
In-body Stabilization No
Video Yes
Best For Parents or amateurs looking to get into photography

You don’t have to deplete diaper funds for a camera that captures good newborn pictures. It’s not a top-of-the-range performer like the Sony a7 IV. But the Nikon D5600 is the best camera for newborn photography. That’s due to its portable size, ease of use, and professional controls.

The Nikon D5600 sports a 24.2 MP APS-C sensor. This isn’t quite as good as a full frame, but it still packs plenty of capabilities.

The sensor captures solid photos for the price point. And unbiased, third-party DxOMark testers still consider the camera a top performer. The EXPEED 4 processor is still decent at capturing images in low light. That’s especially the case if you pair the camera with a bright lens.

Speed-wise, the D5600 snaps away at 5 fps. It is not enough to be hailed as a great sports camera. But it still does the trick for toddlers and older kids in motion. The 39-point autofocus is decent. It’s the type of autofocus that’s long been fine-tuned inside DSLRs.

The camera also uses a tilting touchscreen, unlike the slightly cheaper Nikon D3500. This can help you get fun photos at high and low angles. It often works well when you photograph babies and kids.

As a DSLR, it’s a bit louder than a mirrorless camera‘s silent mode. It doesn’t have image stabilization in the body. And it isn’t the best camera on this list and isn’t ideal for professionals. But it is one of the best cameras you can get on a limited budget.

For new parents, the Nikon D5600 should be on their shopping list. It helps capture those fleeting memories of the newborn stage and beyond. And it won’t break the bank!

2. Canon Rebel T8i

Canon EOS Rebel T8i / 850D
Sensor Format APS-C
Lens Mount Canon EF/EF-S
Megapixels 24 MP
Autofocus Points 45
Maximum ISO 25,600
Frame Rate 7.5 fps
In-body Stabilization No
Video Yes
Best For Parents or amateurs looking to get into photography, who like Canon

The Rebel T8i (850D) is a fantastic, cheap DSLR option from Canon. Its 24 MP sensor produces high-quality images. It’s almost the same resolution as our number one option. Maybe you have a lower-end Canon camera or can get hold of some lenses for cheap. Then this could be the option for you.

You have 45 autofocus points to select from. That’s slightly more than the Nikon D5600. So this may be the better camera to choose if you prefer having the option of more focus points.

The Canon Rebel T8i also has a continuous shooting speed of 7.5 fps. Newborn photography won’t benefit too much from a fast frame rate. But it helps once the little ones are grown up!

One of the best points about this camera is that it is compact and lightweight. This means you can take endless pictures without having your arms tire.

It is also worth noting that a newborn may be afraid of a huge piece of equipment in their face. And a small camera like the Canon Rebel T8i reduces the scare factor by a large amount.

3. Sony a7 IV

Sony a7 IV
Sensor Format Full Frame
Lens Mount Sony E
Megapixels 33 MP
Autofocus Points 759
Maximum ISO 51,200
Frame Rate 10 fps
In-body Stabilization Yes
Video Yes
Best For Professionals or parents with unlimited budgets

The Sony a7 IV is a highly-rated mirrorless camera. It packs all the features professional newborn photographers should look for. DxOMark testing shows it is an excellent low-light performer. And the camera scores high for less noise at high ISOs.

The full frame sensor means the camera isn’t a budget model. And as a mirrorless camera, it is lighter than many DSLRs. Plus, it has a silent shutter mode to not disturb sleeping babies.

And it’s also for photographers looking to photograph kids beyond the newborn stage. The a7 IV packs a solid 10 fps burst speed with a quick autofocus system. It’s a great investment for parents who want a camera that performs well when that newborn is a toddler.

The biggest downside? The battery life has improved from older models. But it doesn’t come close to a DSLR’s long battery life.

Still, the a7 IV will last through a newborn session and capture high-quality images. It is an excellent all-around performer for photographers who shoot in several genres.

Perhaps you like the features but can’t afford the price tag? Then you can also look at older versions of the camera, like the a7 III or the original a7.

4. Fujifilm X-T30 II

Fujifilm X-T30 II
Sensor Format APS-C
Lens Mount Fujifilm X
Megapixels 26 MP
Autofocus Points 425
Maximum ISO 12,800
Frame Rate 30 fps
In-body Stabilization No
Video Yes
Best For Photographers who want a simple camera with a stylish body

Photographers (and parents) don’t have to drop a huge amount on a camera to take good photos of a newborn. APS-C sensor cameras like the Fujifilm X-T30 II capture excellent newborn photos. And it’s at a lower price, just like our top options.

The Fujifilm X-T30 II sports a 26 MP APS-C sensor. That’s not as large as the full frame cameras on this list. But the Fujifilm brand is known for quality images from its X-Trans sensors.

An APS-C is still plenty big enough for newborn photography. And this camera will capture solid newborn portraits to last a lifetime.

The autofocus system has a whopping 425 points and is quick to focus. But there’s no image stabilization included in the body.

The burst mode is a respectable 8 fps, though. But you can push it up to 30 fps with the electronic shutter if you need more. The latter has a slight crop, but it’s quieter, too.

As a mirrorless camera, the X-30 is easy to carry around. It also has a tilting touchscreen to help capture the more hard-to-get angles. And many photographers also love Fujifilm for its retro look.

5. Nikon Z6 II

Nikon Z6 II
Sensor Format Full Frame
Lens Mount Nikon Z
Megapixels 24.5 MP
Autofocus Points 273
Maximum ISO 204,800
Frame Rate 14 fps
In-body Stabilization Yes
Video Yes
Best For Photographers who want up-to-date features and camera settings

Nikon is new to the full frame mirrorless category. While the Nikon Z6 II may not be as refined as Sony’s mirrorless generation, the new camera still packs a powerful punch.

The Z6 II uses a 24.5 MP full frame sensor that captures excellent images. The camera body also has stabilization built-in. If the baby isn’t moving around, this can help in those low-light shots.

As part of Nikon’s mirrorless series, the Z6 II can access many existing Nikon lenses using an FTZ adapter. This could be reason enough to choose the Z6 II for photographers who already own some Nikon glass.

Like most mirrorless cameras, there’s a silent electronic shutter for when the baby is sleeping. And the Z6 II has an even faster frame rate than the a7 IV with 12 fps. But that’s in an extended mode with a few limitations.

The Z6 II is lighter than Nikon DSLRs. But not by a lot if you use a heavier Z lens or when you add the mount adapter. And the tilting touchscreen can also help get the perfect angle without getting a step stool out.

Nikon also has a higher-resolution Z7 II. But the Z6 II autofocus is still rated well in low light. And the mid-range resolution is perfect for newborns. It also means the camera doesn’t cost quite so much.

6. Canon EOS R

Canon EOS R
Sensor Format Full Frame
Lens Mount Canon RF
Megapixels 30.3 MP
Autofocus Points 5,655
Maximum ISO 102,400
Frame Rate 8 fps
In-body Stabilization No
Video Yes
Best For Photographers who want a light and powerful camera

The Canon EOS R has the same 30 MP sensor as the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV DSLR. But it comes in a smaller package and at a lower price point.

The 30 MP sensor is a good mid-point for newborn photography. It’s not too high to introduce a lot of noise or make skin imperfections obvious. But it’s high enough for big prints and good detail.

There is a Canon EOS R lens adapter. So you can use it with Canon’s DSLR lenses. It’s a good option for photographers that may already have a stash of Canon lenses.

It has solid low-light performance. The Canon EOS R is one of the best Canon cameras for low light, according to DxOMark. They rank the image quality a bit below the first three cameras on this list.

The colors and dynamic range aren’t ranked quite as high as others in its class. But Canon’s Dual Pixel autofocus system is also highly praised. This should come in handy when shooting with window light only. And it helps capture those fast-moving toddlers later on.

The EOS R also offers a respectable 8 fps. So you can keep up with fast-moving toddlers and older children as well. And as a mirrorless camera, it is also equipped with a silent electronic shutter.

The Canon EOS R body sells for less than the Sony A7 III and Nikon Z 6. But The EOS R does not have image stabilization like those models. And it doesn’t score quite as high on sensor tests.

Other cameras may be better deals. But the compatibility with Canon lenses and Dual Pixel AF will sway some to buy the EOS R.

7. Canon PowerShot G7 X III

Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III
Sensor Format 1"
Lens Mount Compact
Megapixels 20 MP
Autofocus Points 31
Maximum ISO 12,800
Frame Rate 30 fps
In-body Stabilization Yes
Video Yes
Best For Parents or amateurs who don't have time to learn manual controls

Maybe you don’t have the time to familiarize yourself with a DSLR or mirrorless camera. If so, a powerful point-and-shoot can take you far. It is also a great way to save money if you are looking for cheap options.

The Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III is a compact and lightweight camera. It fits in your pocket or baby bag with ease. And it has a much smaller sensor size than the rest of the cameras for newborn photography on this list. So it will give you a smaller dynamic range.

But even though it has a smaller sensor, you get a superb 20 MP from this small camera! There’s also a whopping 30 fps of continuous shooting to get the perfect shot. Plus, its in-body image stabilization and video make it the perfect all-in-one camera.

The PowerShot G7 X III makes it easy to grab your camera on the way out of the house daily.

Features of the Best Camera for Newborn Photography

If you’re on a budget, stick with a full frame camera or an APS-C camera. This lets you take advantage of the available light the most.

Camera Resolution

The best cameras for newborn photography have a decent resolution. A camera with a resolution that’s too low won’t allow parents to have large prints.

Your camera should have at least 12 MP (megapixels). But 20+ is even better. Many photographers have successfully used cameras with around 50 MP. But higher megapixel cameras may not handle high ISOs as well.

And the greater detail in higher megapixel cameras can emphasize the many imperfections very noticeable on newborn babies’ skin. And this leaves you with more post-processing work.

Frame Rate

Newborn photography is the closest the portrait genre gets to still life photography. That’s because newborns are often photographed sleeping. So you don’t need to spend a lot of cash for a crazy fast camera for newborns.

Sometimes fussy babies only offer a few seconds to get the shot. But most of the time, you have a few minutes after you get the baby in position. That means a fast camera, with a high burst speed like 10 fps, isn’t necessary.

But newborn photographers or parents also take photos of toddlers at some point. Or they may photograph a toddler with a brand-new sibling. That’s a different story.

Photographers specializing beyond just newborns may want a really good burst speed. Kids go from being slow-moving newborns to wild, won’t-sit-still toddlers in the blink of an eye!

High ISO for Low Light

Newborns are often photographed using natural window light. A flash can startle some newborns. So a good camera for newborn portraits should perform well at higher ISOs.

Look for a camera with excellent noise ratings for higher ISO levels. Indoor scenes often mean more than that base ISO 100.

A close up portrait of a baby taken with a camera for newborn photography

Stabilization, Lenses, and Camera Noise

Image stabilizers in the lens or camera body will also boost low-light quality. It allows you to shoot at slower shutter speeds instead of increasing the ISO. This is only if the baby is very still.

Along the same lines, when you look for a lens to pair with your camera body, look for one with a wide aperture, like f/2.8. Permit yourself to skip those f/5.6 kit lenses often bundled with camera bodies.

A 35mm or 50mm f/1.8 is a great lens for newborn photography. Many good versions are also cheap.

Another consideration is how loud the camera will be. In most cases, newborn photographers play white noise. That drowns out the click of a shutter. In some instances, a quiet mode is an excellent feature to have. Many mirrorless cameras and some DSLRs have it.

Conclusion

Photographing newborns comes with a long list of challenges. You must get the baby settled, sleeping, and in that perfect position. Then you have to do it all over again for a new pose.

For newborn photography, look for a camera that performs well in window light. It should also have a mid-range resolution and a quiet shutter. Photographers should also look for a camera with a faster burst speed when introducing toddlers into the shot. This may be photos with siblings or with older children. 

The best camera for newborn photography doesn’t have to be a crazy fast $5,000 camera. We suggest the Nikon D5600 if you’re new to photography. It is an affordable investment for photos you will hold onto for the rest of your life!

Nikon D5600
Nikon D5600
A small and light, low-cost all-rounder. It has an easy-to-use interface, excellent resolution and autofocus, and great low-light performance.
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