Want the best camera for Aerial Photography? Checkout our Top Picks below.
This is one of the most special articles that we have written so far. We have listed some best cameras that work good for capturing aircraft images and videos. Aviation photography is not an easy task certainly because it does not include enough space for chic and jazz imagery.
Here, you have to click some high-quality images or videos. The major difference also comes while choosing a suitable camera for aircraft photography. You have no option of satisfying yourself with a smartphone camera. You have to invest in a good quality DSLR or a high-end mirrorless camera.
The cameras don’t just click images with sharp details and clarity, but they also record the thrilling sounds of take-off planes and flying aircraft.
However you cannot invest in a high end camera without having an ensuring knowledge about its specs and features. We do understand that and the camera drains all your savings at once. Thus we have selected a few cameras with good features and details to suit the particular requirement.
Best Camera for Aerial Photography, Plane Spotting
1. CANON EOS 5D MARK IV – BEST FOR STILLS
The Burst Mode Still Capture from Canon EOS 5D Mark IV grandly suffices the purpose of shooting still images of Aviation. You can shoot perfect videos and audios from this camera. The camera is one of the top searched launches from Canon owing to its reliability and functionality.
If you are still wondering what is special about this camera then let us tell you that the camera comes with a 30.4 Megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor. The ISO of the camera allows shooting in any kind of light. You can shoot equally good in low light and bright light, the ISO ranges 100-32000 and it is expandable up to 50-102400.
The DCI Cinema Type Video with a resolution of 4096 x 2160 at 30p or 24p by the camera and 4K motion JPEG quality is a winning claim that inspires the users to purchase this camera.
Also, you get a Still Frame capturing 4K 8.8-megapixel quality images, whereas multiple video options include full HD videos up to 60 p and HD up to 120p.
Next, you have a dual pixel CMOS Autofocus which is said to be responsive and allowing a smooth shooting. In case you are looking for a good full touchscreen LCD monitor in a camera that offers handy settings, this camera from Canon has it.
In fact, you can also select the area of autofocus from the LCD monitor. You get 7.0 fps continuous shooting speed and you can turn the Canon camera into refined quality webcam by using the EOS Utility Webcam Beta Software.
- Grand image quality and precise still image details.
- Smooth and high quality video shooting
- Premium feel
- Decent ISO range
2. NIKON DF 16.2 MP CMOS FX-FORMAT DIGITAL SLR CAMERA
With Nikon DF 16.2 MP effects format camera you get a perfect blend of simplistic control and advanced technology in an elegantly designed device.
The model from Nikon is one of the best cameras from Nikon to take still images with filtered details. It has a 16MP full-frame CMOS sensor along with 5.5 FPS continuous shooting speed.
The Nikon camera comes with a 39 point autofocus and there are 9 cross-type points as well. It has a 3 inch LCD paired with a 0.7x viewfinder.
You get 100% coverage along with Raw and Raw + JPEG shooting format. Though the camera comes in a simple design, it does not limit your creativity or efficiency in any way.
The build of the camera is made into a compact and portable body so that does not give you a bulky feel while you are using it. That’s all and enough to make it one of the best cameras suitable for aircraft photography and airplane spotting.
- 100% coverage
- Raw and Raw + JPEG shooting format
- Good sensor
- 39 point AF + 9 CROSS TYPE points
- Could have a worthy video shooting capacity
3. FUJIFILM X-T30 MIRRORLESS DIGITAL CAMERA
This is a true investment piece if you are ready to buy a camera worth your money with Top Notch features of digital mirrorless cameras. The special advanced image sensor technology from the Fujifilm xt30 mirrorless digital camera includes a 26.1MP BSI APS-C X-Trans CMOS 4 image sensor and X-Processor 4 quad-core CPU.
Together they provide excellent Auto Focus and Face Detection even if the subjects are in motion. The 4K video quality and high resolution still images are simply stunning. The camera not just packs an accurate autofocus and face detection Technology that boost the quality of low light images, slow-motion effects are going to be total fun with this camera.
Are you wondering why?
Because it allows capturing 1080 pixel videos at 120 fps. Also, the two-way tilting LCD screen of 3 inches is again fun to work with. You can share your data for edits via Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity options.
- Fully justified price
- Clear 4k shooting
- Top graded specs
- Amazing slow-motion shoots
- Does not fit in low budget range
4. PANASONIC HC-X1 4K ULTRA HD
If you are fully into professional features then Panasonic HC X1 4K Ultra HD camera is going to meet all your requirements through its features. Having said this, we cannot overlook a drawback of the camera that it is a heavier pick.
The camera weighs 4.41 lbs. If you are ready to adjust to this weight, other features are going worth admiring with their functionality.
Also Check out: Best Low Light Camcorders
The Panasonic camcorder comes with an uplifted and advanced Optical Image Stabilizer. You would have no problem shooting full 4K Ultra HD, Full HD videos with the 5 Axis hybrid optical image stabilizer.
The camera smoothly records 4K UHD and FHD videos at 60p, 50p, 25p, and 24p. It also has a 20x optical zoom for further convenience in spotting planes. If you want to record the jet audio of the Planes, the camera is capable of performing the same function wonderfully.
That in turn adds life to your videos. Further, the camera has additional features such as 2 channel XLR, Wired And Wireless Remote Control, Triple Manual Rings, Filter, Timecode, and Live HDMI output.
- Class video quality
- 4K, UHD, FHD shoots
- Added features
- Good Audio recording
- Sky touching price
5. SONY PXW-Z90V
Do not hit us for including such an expensive camera in the list. But, what’s worth is worth it. Especially when we are talking about an article that mentions cameras that are good at spotting planes are capturing aircraft images, this camera is going to hit the list altogether.
The most special feature of this camera is the Fast Hybrid AutoFocus with upgraded features.
For Example, you get an Instant HDR workflow w/ HLG along with Super Slow/ S&Q Motion full HD images. The camera has some exceptional features that relate to the field of Aviation. Let’s say the 2.4/5 GHz Wi-Fi networking supports the XDCAM Air production system.
Along with that it also supports Simple Live Solution when it is teamed up with Live Producer and RM30BP Remote. We understand that the features are precisely designed for professional uses but they make more sense too.
- Stunning video qualities
- Upgraded specs
- Professional uses
- Fast Hybrid AutoFocus
- Extremely pricey
Know more about Best Aviation photography cameras:
- Shutter speed: Even one of the top brands of camera suggest selecting a slow shutter speed for aircraft photography. As we mentioned earlier aircraft photography is way more different than other types of photography. Here you would preferably require a shutter speed between 1/25 per sec and 1/125 per sec. The key is to blur the propeller in order to obtain a show motion.
- Position of the sun: Though you do not have a parting background while you are spotting airplanes, you still have enough space for creativity. The position of the sun can highly enhance the quality of your shoot. To achieve creative pictures, you should prefer clicking your pictures during the daytime when the sun projects some most beautiful rays. Further, you can always look for rare and mesmerizing scenarios across the sky.
- Vibration Reduction: Vibration reduction is yet another important feature that should be present in your camera when you are spotting planes in the sky. The vibration disturbs the stabilization of the camera and thus it causes haziness in the images.
- Body posture and practice: Shooting high-quality aircraft photography requires immense practice and determination. The photographer has to figure out which body posture helps in capturing the best images of a certain position of the plane in the sky. Not all body posters are capable of capturing when the plane is in motion in the sky. Similarly, taking photographs of a prop plane requires a different technique. To understand the logic and concept behind various techniques practice becomes the key to success.
- Lens (macro photography): Never forget to invest in a decent lens quality with a standard focal length. Because taking aircraft pictures or spotting planes in the sky would require you to work from a distance. Hence, the features of the lens become important. You can always choose a Macro Lens to enhance the quality of the pictures by closely capturing the subject even if it is at a huge distance.
- Zoom: If your camera lacks an adjustable optical zoom then you would be at a great loss for shooting aircraft photography. Whenever we work for distant photography, we need to zoom the subject to obtain proper effects and clarity. This demands a proper Optical zoom in a camera.
- AutoFocus: Good AF points help you easily focus on your target and take pictures of your choice without much chaos. If you are capable of focusing on your target, capturing an image of it becomes quick and a smoother task.
- Image Stabilization: One of the great advantages of DSLR cameras is their excellence in image stabilization. Image stabilization becomes very crucial for spotting planes. In fact, features such as Autofocus and Image Stabilization are a must for best quality videos and images.