Best Of Cameras 2022: Top Picks Of The Year
Updated: Dec 21, 2022
So here we are, the year’s end with some notable camera releases in 2022. Some were ground-breaking innovations.. And some… well to be fair, were a little unnecessary. But whether or not you shoot videos or photos, I think we all can appreciate a good camera that appeals to our interests, or to some, it represents a vital tool for your professional career.
Which is what this video is about, sharing to you our top camera picks of the year and some honourable mentions that I personally wish I had the opportunity to review, but still made big waves amongst enthusiasts and professionals alike.
Best Action Cam
Starting off with our honourable mention, believe it or not, goes to the GoPro Hero 11 Black. Now we just couldn’t give the GoPro a winner’s title purely on how even though it’s considered the most finished action cam out there, and despite it coming with a newer 27MP sensor, our impressions on it felt more of a comparison to other GoPros before it.
Not so much on the innovation end. While it’s improved tremendously throughout the years, it hasn’t evolved much from its predecessors.
Because of that, the winner for Best Action Cam has got to be the Insta360 ONE RS. Coming with a 48MP interchangeable lens from either your standard fixed focal length to swapping it out to a 360 lens or even a full one-inch sensor, to having an interchangeable core and battery, this design for having things modular sets a whole new tone for what’s possible. Although it doesn’t differ too far from the ONE R that came before it, there’s far more innovation going on here and it really seems that the guys at Insta360 plan to keep things interesting for future generations to come.
Best Compact Camera
Next up, could be your choice for the perfect vlogging tool or something you could carry around in a backpack, something pocketable or a better way of saying things, something compact. This next category is the Best Compact Camera.
To be fair, this category could have easily been won by an iPhone 14 Pro at this point, coming with that 48MP sensor, but ultimately this is strictly for cameras alone and the one that still made a reasonable sense for people looking to capture those casual moments while keeping things discreet and still having the option to swap lenses every now and then. For that, the winner for this category goes to the Nikon Z30.
If I'm being honest, Nikon has been in a weird spot in the last few years for being put up against massive rivals like Sony and Canon. But seeing the Z30 and last year’s release of the Z9, it still feels as though they’re putting up one hell of a fight to stay relevant in today’s world of mirrorless cameras. While the Nikon Z30 itself didn’t exactly give off groundbreaking resolutions or image quality, practicality is still the priority here. It still came with a decent battery life, ergonomics and form factor, autofocus, a very intuitive 3-inch touchscreen, shoots 4K up to 30fps, and even high frame rates up to 120 in Full HD.
So yeah, a decent camera with decent specs, but ultimately it's more of a reasonable release this year compared to our honourable mention, the Sony ZV-1F.
I personally didn’t fully understand why Sony came up with a camera solely made for vlogging, but they did one anyway…. Well because they can! But for something that only serves for a very niche purpose, it doesn’t justify why something like the ZV-1F had to be made, coming with a fixed 20mm lens, contrast AF (which also wasn’t very reliable),
In other words, they could’ve put their resources into making maybe a newer A6000 series, which would’ve stirred up quite a bit of a craze if you’d think about it. I mean as far as I know, there's massive amounts of creators out there still rocking an A6300. But who knows, they might’ve just discontinued the series OR they might be saving it for sometime next year. Who knows.
The Most Innovative
Next up, is a standalone winner because nothing else could even compete in the amount of R&D that went into this camera. Although it’s not exactly your conventional DSLR or mirrorless or even cine cam, this category can only mean one thing, the Most Innovative.
Now if I remember correctly, last year’s winner for this category went to the Canon R3 for having that Eye-control Autofocus, and some other impressive sports photography essentials or video specs.
But this isn’t just some sports camera capable of shooting crazy resolutions or smart autofocus, no no.. this camera figured out a way to fit three to even four or even more, separate devices into one build. It’s also a camera that unfortunately didn’t make it onto this channel, but I personally think it sets a whole new mindset for how we think about cameras in general. I’m talking about the DJI Ronin 4D.
While some of you might be thinking that yeah, this camera came out about the same time last year and it's a little unfair to mention it again this time around, but they only did start shipping it in February of 2022, so in a way, it still counts? And we personally just could not end the year without mentioning it.
From built-in ND filters to a 4-axis gimbal, Li-Dar focusing, built-in Wireless Transmission, a full-frame sensor supporting internal recordings of Apple ProRes RAW, ProRes 422 HQ, and even supports up to 8K75fps or high frame rates up to 4K120. The modularity you get is just insane for a cinema camera and purely a cinematographer's wet dream. Best Cine Cam
Starting off with our honourable mention, which is the Sony FX30. Coming with a super 35mm 20.1MP sensor, 4K up to 120fps 10-bit 4:2:2, and pretty much everything else you get in an FX3 but with a much more affordable price tag. But yes of course it's not a full-frame, while also missing out on the XLR top handle that comes separately.
You still get a variable angle LCD display, Flexible ISO modes, and Focus Breathing Compensations which was first introduced in the A7IV. So yeah in a way, it’s still a very familiar Sony cine camera which isn't as daunting compared to the likes of an FX6 or FX9.
But our pick for the Best Cine Camera for this year has got to be the Canon R5C.
I, for one, didn’t expect the R5C to make much of a difference from the R5 (overheating and all), believing as though taking out IBIS didn't really make sense, and fitting an internal fan might have made it too bulky. But it really justifies itself as a cine cam to combat previous issues seen in the R5, while also coming with a slightly different full-frame 45 MP CMOS sensor that doesn't come with IBIS. There should be significant improvements for rolling shutter and will definitely remove all of that wobbly footage still seen in the standard R5. It also shoots internal recording up to 8K/30 RAW and up to 8K60 RAW with external power. Not to mention Cinema EOS features such as C-Log 3, waveforms, false colour monitoring, and even a timecode terminal.
Although Canon's Dual Pixel autofocus might not contest with Sony's hybrid-phase autofocus for the R5C, in this case, it really does give you more powerhouse options compared to the FX30 which felt more of a toned-down version of the FX3.
Best Hybrid Camera
But as an ultimate choice for the Best Camera of 2022, it boils down to how it serves for both video and photo capture. While other cameras that didn't make the list such as the Panasonic GH6 should definitely deserve some applause for improving its low light performance from the GH5, our honourable mention for this category goes to the Fujifilm XH2s.
Also another camera we didn't get to review on this channel but definitely caught our attention on how the suggested specs were too loud to be ignored, such as extending the camera’s ability to record continuous frames in burst mode without stopping while reaching blackout-free speeds of up to 40fps, which make over 1000 frames continuously at 30fps in JPEG, or write RAW images at 20fps when using the electronic shutter. On top of that, it also does up to 6.2K30 ProRes 4:2:2 HQ 10-bit or even DCI 4K120 10-bit 4:2:2, in H.265.
Like I said, I have yet to test this camera out in person and it just sounds too ridiculous to be true and hopefully, we can put it to the test together sometime soon. This is why the winner for the Best Camera of 2022 has to be given to… you guessed it, the Sony A7RV.
Personally, I had a hard time accepting this camera to win Best Camera of the year, but you simply just can't silence Sony with their Alpha series. They really do represent a well-oiled machine of today's standard and the results speak for themselves.
From a new 61MP full-frame sensor, that new 4-axis vari-angle LCD monitor, a newly developed AI processing unit for multiple subject detections, (even insects!) and up to 693 phase-detection autofocus which covers about 79% of the image area, to 8K25 10-bit 4:2:0 video recording. In more ways than one, I personally feel they were just holding the A7RV back just a tad bit so they can justify the existence of their flagship A1, but nevertheless, it’s still a beast of a camera, regardless of your reason to use this camera for photo or video.
So there it is! Our top picks of the year and we do hope we can keep the inevitable disagreements in a civil manner within the comment section below. After all, cameras are just a tool and 2022 has blessed us with quite a range of cameras, and for that I personally am grateful. Otherwise, I won't have a job!