Three Perfect Mirrorless Cameras For The Advanced Amateur

Are you ready to upgrade from that basic mirrorless kit you bought to learn photography with? Advanced amateurs make a large portion of the photography marketplace, yet most guides and gear roundups seem to favor people in the beginners or professional category. The issue arises because basic cameras are well,…too basic for an advanced amateur to do what they want/need, while professional level cameras are often overkill in terms of features while being out of reach financially.

So today we are looking at that sweet spot for the advanced amateur, between the $900 and $1900 price point. We will be looking at some of the best mirrorless options out there right now to try and help you sort out which may be the best option for you with your next upgrade.

Ready? Great, lets get into it!

Sony A6300

The A6300 is an incredibly powerful, yet compact, mirrorless camera that features a sort of modern rangefinder-esq aesthetic. It has some of the fastest mirrorless AF performance around and is capable of capturing images that drop jaws. It also makes a great companion camera to those of you looking to expand your Sony kit without dropping the cheddar on another A7 series body.

In our review we said:

“In many ways the Sony a6300 is an excellent camera. Great image quality, very versatile RAW files, a small size, great autofocus, and more. What more could you possibly ask for? My qualms with it have to do with the fact that the high ISO output is starting to fall behind the competitor and that I genuinely feel like the ergonomics need to take a step up at this point. Otherwise, it’s a very solid camera.” Read the Review

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Fujifilm X-T20


The X-T20 is right now the best mid-range Fujifilm body you can get your hands on and it features many of the great features you can find in Fuji’s professional X-Pro2 and X-T2 bodies. It’s AF is fast and accurate, and the retro design with knobs and dials really makes this camera a joy to use for anyone who holds it. If you are looking to keep your budget reigned in, this is a great option in the Fujifilm system.

In our review we said:

“The Fujifilm X-T20 is quite honestly a fantastic camera. It’s small, lightweight, can perform very well, has fast autofocus and really nice image quality, and overall can deliver quite a lot of great images in the hands of the right photographer. But at the same time, there are things holding it back, like the battery life being drained too fast and the fact that I genuinely feel like I’ve been able to get more from the Fujifilm RAW files and the highlights in the past.” Read the Review

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Olympus OM-D E-M5 II


If you don’t mind the smaller sensor (and lets be real here, for most people this is not a big deal) then the Olympus OM-D E-M5 II is an incredible option for advanced amateurs looking to go mirrorless. This camera packs a ton of features and performance into a small and compact body that is not only easy to use, but easy to take with you virtually anywhere.


In our review we said:

“The sensor in the Olympus OMD EM5 MK II is the single best four thirds sensor that we’ve tested. It’s got a ton of dynamic range, great high ISO abilities, can give you a higher resolution photo if you need, lots of autofocus points that just work, and a heck of a lot going for it. On a personal note, I’m more partial to the simplicity that the Mk I delivers, but we totally see how photographers will relate to this product much more.” Read the Review

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So there you have it, three really solid mirrorless cameras for you advanced amateurs to consider with your next upgrade. Hopefully this has been helpful.

Anthony Thurston

Anthony is a Portland, Oregon based Boudoir Photographer specializing in a dark, moody style that promotes female body positivity, empowerment, and sexuality. Besides The Phoblographer, he also reviews gear and produces his own educational content on his website.