Digital Photography Review

10 Best Low Light Video Cameras and Camcorders 2021

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Unlike daytime videos, it’s very easy to differentiate good and bad low light videos. That’s why besides enhancing your low light filming skill, getting a good camera is equally crucial. Want to get the cream of the crop? We did the work for you. In this post, we compiled the best low light video cameras.

caucasian guy taking a photo using a DSLR camera - best low light video cameras

Best Low Light Video Cameras

We know what you want in your low light video—less to zero noise, beautiful colors, and balanced midtones, and many more.

However, we also know that’s hard to achieve. After all, this is low light videography we’re talking about. Nevertheless, getting a powerful camera for low light shoots will give you a good head start.

We believe that you should get any of these best low light video cameras:

1. Sony a7 III (Our Top Pick)

Straight from the get-go, Sony A7 III is a powerful and dynamic camera. It’s great for events and sports photography.

However, Sony A7 III significantly outperforms the competition in low light videography with higher ISO values. This magic happens because of its dual grain architecture, which helps the sensor become more sensitive to light at a pixel level.

A7 III also keeps an excellent level of sharpness in your photos with its high-performing JPEG noise reduction.

Because of these lovely qualities, Sony a7 III is one if not the best low light video camera you will regret missing out on.

2. Panasonic LUMIX GH5S

Panasonic’s LUMIX GH5S is one of the best low light video cameras we highly recommend. It goes neck and neck with Sony a7 III in performance.

GH5S knocks it out of the park in low light videography, thanks to its dual ISO on the 4K-optimized sensor and bigger pixels. This allows for an effortless grain reduction ability even in higher ISO settings.

Even better, GH5S has a cocktail of exceptional features for high dynamic range (HDR) videography. It has 4:2:2 color subsampling, 10-bit colors, and a Vlog-L color profile, which gives you the freedom to adjust the colors in post-processing.

It even has 4K with 10-bit internal recording, which is not available in Sony a7 III.

So, there you have it—this camera is a heavy lifter that won’t waste one cent of your budget.

3. Panasonic HC-WXF991

We can’t seem to get enough of Panasonic, but we’re not out of good reasons. One of those is HC-WXF991. If you want to get one of the best low light camcorders, then you will feel glad after buying this device.

HC-WXF991 is reliable in low light videography because of its unique night vision settings, which will give you flexibility in pitch-black areas. It also lets you choose three modes: 2 lux for low-light shooting and 1 lux and 0 lux for completely dark shooting.

Moreover, with its LEICA Dicomar Lens optical 20x zoom, 4K Ultra HD recording, and a built-in twin camera for a picture-in-picture (PIP) effect, you’ll feel unstoppable in the wild.

Must-read:

  • iPhone Photos in Low Light: Practical Tips and Brilliant Hacks
  • 10 Best Portable Movie Projectors for iPhone (2020)
  • 9 Clever iPhone Camera Techniques: Tips from the Experts!

4. Canon EOS 90D

If you want power, speed, and convenience in a camera, then the EOS 90D is undoubtedly for you. This camera doesn’t only power through low light environments but also lets you connect to the internet and other devices via Bluetooth.

With its 32mp CMOS (APS-C) sensor and a wide ISO range of 100-25000, you can confidently record your subjects from day till dawn. Time lag will also be a myth with its 10fps continuous shooting. And with a 4K 30p video capability, you won’t miss any lifelike detail in your subjects.

Overall, EOS 90D is a versatile companion to a consistently demanding shoot. If you are keen on performance, it’s one of the best low light video cameras you ought to have.

5. Panasonic LUMIX G85

This is the second mention of Panasonic’s LUMIX, and we’re not even sorry about it. Panasonic just knows how to build the best low light video cameras. So, what’s so compelling about G85?

This mirrorless camera will impress you with its versatility. It has a wide range of ISO of 200-25600, which will let you shoot low light videos and take photos with incredible clarity. It doesn’t fall short in the speed department, as well. If you have an electronic shutter, you can shoot up to 40fps at Ultra High Definition (UHD) 4K.

With its post focus feature, you can change the focus in a photo, even after you have already captured it.

LUMIX G85 is the best low light mirrorless camera for still shooters and videographers. If you’re both or either of those, you need to grab hold of this machine.

6. Sony a6400

Sony a6400 is one camera you can trust for long night walks along the beach or a stroll in New York’s concrete jungle. It is by no means a heavy-duty and expensive camera, but you can rely on its ability to bring exceptional quality to your low light videos.

There’s no question about this camera’s build. Lightweight, compact, and small, it’s a perfect camera for traveling and outdoor activities.

A6400 is also equipped with a wide array of tools to assist you in video shoots like zebra stripes, histogram, focus peaking, and focus punch-in. Plus, with its recent a9 processor, it can stay focused on a subject for a longer time.

As for recording low light footage, a6400 deserves the applause it gets. It has an expandable ISO range of up to 102400, which will let you avoid grainy low light footage wherever you film it. It can also capture a 4k video with full detail. Overall, it’s one of the best low light video cameras you can get today.

Must-read:

  • Best iPhone filmmaking lighting: Our top 9 picks
  • 12 Important DSLR Camera Accessories You Should Have in Your Bag
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7. Canon EOS Rebel T7i

With a Dual Pixel CMOS AF (DAF), Canon EOS Rebel T7i is being lauded for its responsiveness and high-performance focus tracking. However, it’s also great at providing flexibility in shooting videos in low light situations—and at a lower price than most luxurious DSLR cameras.

Why is it one of the best low light video cameras you can get at the moment? Well, Rebel T7i is way too affordable for its badass features.

It has a large 24.2 Megapixel CMOS (APS-C) sensor, the capacity to shoot 60 frames per second in full HD, and an ISO range of up to 25600. Altogether, this is already more than an adequate armory on a gloomy day.

If you don’t have $10,000 in your savings account, you should definitely check Rebel T7i. It’s one of the few Canon cameras out there that gives you a bigger bang for your buck.

8. Canon EOS 5D Mark IV

While it’s equipped with features designed for still shooters, EOS 5D is superb at shooting video in low light. There are few flaws, of course, but they don’t overpower this device’s performance in a major way.

If you’re particular about clarity and resolution, EOS 5D will delight you. It lets you easily capture high-detail 4K footage internally using its relatively recent 30.4 Megapixel full-frame sensor. It can also expand up to ISO 25600, which is more than reliable in low light environments.

Like the Rebel 7Ti, EOS 5D also has DAF that allows for smooth auto-focusing in your videos. This feature will come in handy if you’re filming fast-moving subjects like wild animals, dancers, or small children.

EOS 5D Mark IV is a must-have, regardless if you’re getting a camera for the first time or replacing your Mark II or Mark III camera.

9. Sony FDRAX53/B

The number one complaint about camcorders is their performance in low light situations. Well, you won’t likely have any with Sony FDRAX53/B.

Sony FDRAX53/B has 16.6MP Exmor R sensor, which is not really that bad if you use another DSLR camera as your main device. Exmor R sensors have smaller sensors that allow for higher resolution without compromising the light sensitivity. It also lets you shoot in an impressive 4K at 24fps to 30fps.

All in all, Sony FDRAX53/B is the best low light camcorder you should get, especially if you intend to do a lot of moving, handheld shots.

Must-read:

  • Best iPhone filmmaking lighting: Our top 9 picks
  • Top 12 professional iPhone filmmaking equipment
  • Must-have photography studio equipment: 13 best tools you should buy!

10. Canon VIXIA HF G20

We’re ending our list with another Canon model, but this time it’s a camcorder. And a good one at that.

Like the other Canon cameras in this roundup, VIXIA HF G20 has 20% greater power in low light situations because of its HD CMOS Pro Image Sensor. This allows this camcorder to capture more light and add sharpness to your footages.

VIXIA HF G20 also comes with a DIGIC DV III image processor, which helps eliminate noise and keep your video’s colors more realistic. It also comes with a detachable lens hood to give you more flexibility.

Needless to say, this camcorder can very well compete with DSLR cameras in video shooting.

Conclusion

Low light videos may be tricky to perfect, but with any of these babies on your hands, filming won’t be such a mountain to climb. So, remember to invest wisely in the right camera. Don’t go for a device just because it’s the only available one or the cheapest camera you can find. Good luck!

How can I make a good low light video?

Take note that you’re making a low light video and not a zero light one. So, besides getting any of the good cameras we listed above, you should also invest in great lighting equipment like the ones in our best filmmaking equipment list. If you’re using an iPhone to film a low light clip, you can browse this list of the best lighting equipment for iPhone filmmaking.

What is the best f stop for low light?

Despite having disadvantages, the best f stop number for low light videos is f 2.0. This will increase the size of your lens, letting in more light. This will make your resolution better and the subject’s details sharper.

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