Yes, as we said last year, the era of the DSLR is coming to an end as mirrorless cameras take over and manufacturers stop development of new flagship models. But that doesn’t mean DSLR cameras are suddenly going away. In fact, there are still quite a few excellent models out there at great prices.
Even better if you already own a number of native DSLR lenses, getting a new DSLR in 2022 means you won’t need to worry about compatibility or fuss with clunky adapters. Just pop a lens on your camera and go out shooting. And despite the fact that quiet and svelte mirrorless cameras are all the rage these days, there’s something about a durable DSLR with its familiar shutter sound that will never truly go out of style.
The best DSLRs of 2022, in our opinion, are three of the most recently introduced models from Pentax, Nikon, and Canon. We’ve included them on the following pages below in our Good, Better, and Best format so you can pick a DSLR that suits your style of shooting and your budget.
Editor’s Note: Good, Better, Best is a product guide series on Digital Photo where we suggest three buying options for our favorite photo gear. A product qualifies as “Good,” if it’s affordable yet still offers decent quality for the price. “Better” means it’s a solid medium-tier choice that we think will appeal to most photographers both on features and price. “Best” are top-tier photography products that offer the pinnacle in quality but also the highest price. See our Good Better Best guides to the best cameras for beginners here, the best macro lenses here, the top camera backpacks here, the top superzoom cameras here, the top budget flashes here, and the top ring lights here.
GOOD: Pentax K-3 Mark III
The Pentax K-3 Mark III ($1996) was the only new DSLR introduced in 2021 but it would’ve been a top APS-C-sensor (aka crop) format camera in any year. The K-3 Mark III is that good and it’s certainly given Pentax fans something to smile about. The Pentax K-3 III features a 25.7-megapixel backside-illuminated CMOS sensor without an anti-aliasing filter to capture images with optimized resolution. It also has a PRIME V image processor and a “new-generation accelerator unit” to capture images with minimal noise at high ISOs. The K-3 III can shoot at up to ISO 1,600,000, so that noise reduction tech certainly comes in handy. Like the previous models in the Pentax K-3 line, the Mark III has a compact, rugged camera body that is dustproof and weather resistant, and dual SD card slots. Unlike previous iterations, the K-3 III is the first in the Pentax K series line to offer a rear 3.2-inch touchscreen. Other top features include a 12 frames per second burst mode; the Pentax SR shake reduction system, which gives you 5.5 stops of camera shake correction; and the SAFOX 13 autofocus system, which features 101 AF points with 25 cross type points and improved continuous autofocus tracking. Read a full review of the Pentax K-3 III at our sister site, Imaging Resource, here.