6 Best Street Photography Camera Under $500: (2023 Guide & Reviews)

Last Updated on September 8, 2023 by Sharon Advik

I’ve been an extrovert my entire life.

Meeting new people, learning about different communities, and interacting with strangers has always been my favorite pastime.

To do so, street photography was the best opportunity for me.

It gave me a creative outlet and enabled me to enjoy the challenge of capturing candid moments and telling stories through my images.

It also allowed me to enjoy being out in the world and observing life unfolding around me.

Hence, I needed a mid-ranged, lightweight, portable camera that produces high-quality photos with accurate colors.

I tested many options for the best street photography camera under $500.

Which are the Best Street Photography Camera Under $500?

Here are my recommended top 6 Best Street Photography Camera Under $500:-

Canon EOS Rebel T7: (Best Street Photography Camera Under $500)

You never forget your first love.

I always remembered mine with the Canon EOS Rebel T7.

I started my photography journey on the streets of New York with this gadget, which never disappointed me.

Canon released this DSLR camera in 2018.

It is a beginner-level camera that is perfect for a newbie in street photography like me who wants to learn more about it.

I call it the best street photography camera for under $500 because it fits my budget.

Features:

  • Model: Canon EOS Rebel T7
  • Effective Megapixel: 24 MP
  • Image sensor: APS-C (22.3 x 14.9 mm) CMOS
  • ISO range: 100-6400 (expandable to 12800)
  • Shutter speeds: 1/4000 sec
  • Storage: SD/SDHC/SDXC card
  • LCD: 3-inch, fixed articulated LCD
  • Dimension: 129 x 101 x 78 mm
  • Weight: 475g

ISO / Shutter Speed:

Like every other professional camera, it allows you to adjust the ISO and shutter speed settings to suit the lighting conditions and creative effects.

For street photography, I kept a moderate ISO setting to balance the need for a fast shutter speed and to minimize the noise in your photos.

I spent most of the time doing daylight street shoots.

Hence, my go-to settings were ISO 400 and a shutter speed of 1/25th sec.

Aperture / Depth of Field:

The camera has an aperture range of f/3.5-5.6.

A greater aperture allows more light to pass through the lens, perfect for the most significant exposure causing shallow DoF.

However, an aperture of f/4 was perfect for sunny day street photos as it captured sharpness throughout the scene.

I recommend experimentation with different aperture settings to see what works best for the photos you are trying to take.

White Balance / Frame Rate:

It has a frame rate of up to 30 fps in continuous shooting mode.

Street photography cameras may have a better frame rate, but it is sufficient for capturing candid moments and action in the streets.

I set the white balance to “Daylight” as my pictures were more vibrant than AWB’s.

Why is this camera the best?

This camera is excellent for street photography due to its compact size and lightweight design, making it easy to carry around and discreet when capturing candid shots.

It has a 24.1 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor, allowing high-quality images and video.

Conclusion:

Overall, it is a reliable and versatile camera well-suited for street photography.

The Rebel T7 has a wide ISO range of 100-6400, allowing for shooting in various lighting conditions.

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Pros
  • 24MP image sensor.
  • On-screen shooting guide.
  • Raw support.
  • Sharp LCD.
  • Wi-Fi-enabled.
  • Inexpensive.
Cons
  • Autofocus is unavailable when recording video.
  • Slow 3fps burst rate.

Panasonic LUMIX ZS80: (Best Street Photography Camera Under $500)

Carrying bulky cameras for street photography is nothing but a burden.

While roaming the streets of Madrid, I realized how lightweight and handy the Panasonic LUMIX ZS80 is.

But it wasn’t the only reason I called it the best street photography camera under $500.

It features a 30x zoom lens, allowing you to get close to your subjects without physically approaching them.

It also has a variety of shooting modes, including a manual mode for more control over the shots.

Features:

  • Model: Panasonic LUMIX ZS80
  • Effective Megapixel: 20 MP
  • Image sensor: 6.17 x 4.55 mm BSI-CMOS
  • ISO range: 80-3200 (expands to 6400)
  • Shutter speeds: 1/2000 sec
  • Storage: SD/SDHC/SDXC (UHS-I supported)
  • LCD: 3-inch, tilting articulated LCD
  • Dimension: 112 x 69 x 42 mm
  • Weight: 327g

ISO / Shutter Speed:

The camera has a minimum ISO of 80, and the range between 100-400 is ideal for street photography.

The shutter speed of 1/50th second is perfect for balancing sufficient light and minimal motion blur.

I recommend setting the camera to continuous shooting mode to allow for multiple shots in quick succession.

Aperture / Depth of Field:

For street photography with the LUMIX ZS80, I use an aperture of f/4 to f/8.

This allows a wider depth of field, which helps to keep more of the scene in focus and capture more detail in the foreground and background.

White Balance / Frame Rate:

This camera can click up to 30 fps in burst mode.

I found it very useful while capturing pedestrians in street photography.

I did notice the frame rate being different every time I captured it, as it depends on factors such as lighting conditions and the selected resolution.

Why is this camera the best?

For the shots on the go, this camera did a tremendous job.

It has a fast autofocus system, essential for capturing sharp and clear images of moving subjects.

It has a variety of lens options, including wide-angle and prime lenses, which are ideal for capturing the atmosphere of the street.

Conclusion:

Overall, it is a treat to work with such a versatile camera.

People call it the best consumer option in the mid-range.

The long zoom range made it easy to click pictures of subjects far from me.

The only issue I faced was that it didn’t do well in low-light conditions.

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Pros
  • Portable design.
  • Impressive photo autofocus system.
Cons
  • Limited dynamic range.

Canon EOS M50: (Best Street Photography Camera Under $500)

The combination of traveling and street photography is deadly.

Not only do I get to see the world from other perspectives, but I also preserve those moments.

My educational trip to Lisbon was complete with my Canon EOS M50.

As a student, a mid-range camera was the least I could afford, but the pictures weren’t less than a high-end one.

Hence, it is the best street photography camera for under $500.

Features:

  • Model: Canon EOS M50
  • Effective Megapixel: 24 MP
  • Image sensor: 22.3 x 14.9mm CMOS
  • ISO range: 200-25600 (expands to 100-25600)
  • Shutter speeds: 1/4000 sec. to 30 sec
  • Storage: SD, SDHC, SDXC (UHS-I compatible)
  • LCD: 3-inch, fully articulated LCD
  • Dimension: 116 x 88 x 59 mm
  • Weight: 469g

ISO / Shutter Speed:

The ISO sensitivity range of this camera is 100-25600.

The ISO setting is adjustable to allow more or less light to reach the camera’s image sensor, which can be helpful in different lighting situations.

I didn’t want the photos to be overexposed, so I decreased the ISO to 200.

It has a shutter speed range of 30 seconds to 1/4000th of a second in manual mode.

However, 1/40th sec settings gave me good results.

Aperture / Depth of Field:

For street photography, setting the aperture to f/2 in daylight was useless for me.

So, I used a moderate aperture for appropriate brightness.

The camera can either adjust itself, or you can control the light entering the camera and the depth of field in the image.

White Balance / Frame Rate:

This camera’s frame rate may vary depending on the specific settings and conditions.

It can shoot 4K videos at 24 fps or 25 fps.

Vibrant photos are the heart and soul of street photography.

Hence, I set the WB to “sunny” for perfect images.

Why is this camera the best?

It is a good choice for street photography as it has a 24-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor plus a DIGIC 8 photo processor, which allows for high-quality images with low noise and good detail.

It also has a fast autofocus system with Dual Pixel CMOS AF, which helps capture happening moments on the street.

Conclusion:

The M50 has a range of creative filters and image effects, including miniature and fish-eye effects, which can add a unique touch to street photography images.

Overall, it is a versatile and capable camera for street photography.

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Pros
  • Compact.
  • 24MP APS-C image sensor.
  • 10fps burst.
  • 7.4fps with tracking.
  • Wide focus coverage area.
  • Vari-angle touch LCD.
  • Mic input.
  • EVF.
  • Wi-Fi.
Cons
  • 4K video is cropped with slower autofocus.
  • Limited shots when shooting Raw bursts.

Nikon D5300: (Best Street Photography Camera Under $500)

A timeless classic by Nikon – the mighty D5300.

It is one of my first yet absolute favorite models to work with.

Even though I carry two sets of cameras, their versatility makes me use them on every trip.

The Autofocus system and high megapixels result in vibrant photos.

Hence, it is the best street photography camera for under $500.

Features:

  • Model: Nikon D5300
  • Effective Megapixel: 16 MP
  • Image sensor: 23.5 x 15.6 mm CMOS
  • ISO range: 100-12,800 standard (expanded up to 25,600)
  • Shutter speeds: 1/4000 to 30 sec
  • Storage: SD and UHS-I compliant, SDHC and SDXC cards
  • LCD: 3.2-inch, vari-angle LCD
  • Dimension: 125 × 98 × 76 mm
  • Weight: 480g

ISO / Shutter Speed:

It has a native ISO range of 100-12800 and can be extended to 100-25600.

The camera can capture images in low light conditions, but at higher ISOs, there may be some noise or grain in the picture.

I always worked at an ISO of 400 in daylight street photography, while at night, 800 ISO with a slow shutter speed did justice to the pictures.

Aperture / Depth of Field:

The maximum aperture range of this camera is f/3.5-5.6 for the kit lens (18-55mm) and f/2.8 for the 24-85mm lens.

The aperture is adjustable in manual, aperture priority, and program mode to control the amount of light entering the camera and the depth of field in the image.

White Balance / Frame Rate:

It has a frame rate of approximately 5 frames per second in continuous shooting mode.

The white balance on the camera is adjustable to match the scene’s lighting conditions.

Several options are available for white balance, including automatic, preset options such as daylight, shade, and tungsten, and the ability to set a custom white balance.

Why is this camera the best?

Its 24.2 megapixel APS-C sensor captures detailed and vibrant images, and its 39-point autofocus system allows for quick and precise focusing on moving subjects.

Whether you’re shooting candid portraits, fast-moving action, or intimate moments, the D5300 has the tools to capture stunning images.

Conclusion:

The D5300 also has a flip-out LCD screen, making taking candid shots from creative angles easier.

It also has built-in WiFi and GPS, making it easy to share photos on social media and geotag the shots.

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Pros
  • 24-megapixel sensor with no optical low-pass filter.
  • Sharp vari-angle display.
  • Excellent JPG detail at high ISO.
  • 4.7fps continuous shooting.
  • 39-point autofocus system.
  • Quick startup.
  • 1080p60 video capture.
  • Integrated Wi-Fi and GPS.
  • Standard mic input.
Cons
  • Images on the noisy side.
  • It will not autofocus with screw-drive lenses.
  • Pentamirror viewfinder.

Nikon COOLPIX B600: (Best Street Photography Camera Under $500)

People use this camera by Nikon for landscape photography.

Which I did, too.

But once, I accidentally brought it with me on my vacation in Spain.

I had no choice but to capture street shots with it, and the experience was quite pleasant!

With a good hand feel and excellent pixels, it’s safe to say that it is the best street photography camera for under $500.

Features:

  • Model: Nikon COOLPIX B600
  • Effective Megapixel: 16 MP
  • Image sensor: 6.17 x 4.55 mm BSI- CMOS
  • ISO range: 125-6400
  • Shutter speeds: 1/4000 sec
  • Storage: SD, SDHC, SDXC
  • LCD: 3-inch, fixed articulated LCD
  • Dimension:122 x 82 x 99 mm
  • Weight: 500g

ISO / Shutter Speed:

At maximum resolution, the Nikon Coolpix B600 features seven sensitivity levels ranging from ISO 125 to ISO 6400.

I chose the lower ISO 400 with a shutter speed of 1/100th sec for the best picture quality.

As a result, my photos were sharp and less grainy.

Aperture / Depth of Field:

The aperture range of this camera is f/3.3 to f/5.5, which is excellent for street photography in different lighting.

I took most of my photos on the f/4 setting with shutter speed and ISO set accordingly.

Hence, my accidentally carrying it to my vacations didn’t go to waste.

And my photos turned out vibrant and with less noise.

White Balance / Frame Rate:

The camera can shoot videos at 30 fps in 1080p, which is ideal for any camera.

Since street photography isn’t highly demanding in terms of setting, it worked fine.

I chose the AWB setting as I didn’t have the time to adjust the settings for it.

Surprisingly, the white balance added warm hues, which I like.

Why is this camera the best?

The camera has a 60x optical zoom lens, which allows you to capture detailed images from a distance, making it perfect for capturing candid shots of people roaming around.

The B600, like many of Nikon’s most recent cameras, includes SnapBridge technology, which enables you to keep a permanent Bluetooth connection with your smartphone to transfer photographs as you capture them.

Conclusion:

Overall, the camera is perfect for traveling.

It is portable and provides easy use with a significant textured hand grip.

Other noteworthy features include a 3.0-inch 921k-dot screen, built-in WiFi networking, and Complete 1080p HD video recording.

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Pros
  • Big zoom power.
  • Sharp rear display.
  • Snappy autofocus.
  • SnapBridge wireless.
  • Relatively compact.
Cons
  • No manual exposure controls or Raw support.
  • No EVF.

Panasonic Lumix FZ-83: (Best Street Photography Camera Under $500)

I was skeptical about buying Panasonic for my photography assignment for a course at first.

But after hearing so many good reviews about it.

I decided to see if it was the best street photography camera for under $500.

I kid you not!

It sure is a fantastic camera for street photography.

Features:

  • Model: Panasonic Lumix FZ-83
  • Effective Megapixel: 18.1 MP
  • Image sensor: 130.2 x 94.3 x 119.2 mm CMOS
  • ISO range: 80 – 3200
  • Shutter speeds: 1/16000 sec
  • Storage: SD, SDHC, SDXC
  • LCD: 3-inch, fixed LCD
  • Dimension: 124 x 82 x 95 mm
  • Weight: 572g

ISO / Shutter Speed:

The ISO setting on the Panasonic Lumix FZ-83 camera can be important for street photography, as it determines how sensitive the camera’s sensor is to light.

A higher ISO setting will allow me to capture images in low light conditions.

Usually, an ISO of 400 with a 1/100th shutter speed works well for daylight street photos.

Do the same if you own one of these.

Aperture / Depth of Field:

For street photos, I used an aperture of f/5.6 for a good balance of depth of field.

This kept the background and foreground focused while allowing some bokeh to draw attention to my subject.

Considering the lighting conditions and ISO settings when taking street photos is also essential.

White Balance / Frame Rate:

Even though street photography is quite random, capturing details precisely is essential.

That’s the only way to understand what goes on in everybody’s minds.

I shot at 30 frames per second in high resolution.

Why is this camera the best?

The Lumix FZ-83 is a good choice for street photography due to its versatile zoom range and fast autofocus.

With a 60x optical zoom, you can capture a wide range of subjects from far away, while the 20.3-megapixel resolution ensures high-quality images.

The camera also has a fast autofocus speed of 0.09 seconds, making capturing fast-moving subjects on the street easy.

Conclusion:

This bridge camera is an all-around performer.

The strong 60x Zoom optical zoom and 4K picture and video features provide maximum versatility.

Its huge focal length range of 20 mm wide-angle to 1200 mm super-telephoto enables dynamic landscape photos and format-filling photographs of distant buildings or pedestrians.

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Pros
  • Huge 60x zoom range.
  • Fast autofocus.
  • 10fps Raw capture.
  • 30fps 4K Photo capture.
  • Touch LCD.
  • Sharp EVF.
  • Wi-Fi.
Cons
  • No EVF eye sensor.
  • Fixed rear LCD.

CONCLUSION:

Alright, guys, that concludes all the cameras we will discuss today in this article.

Do you guys have any experience with these cameras? What are your thoughts on them?

Which is your Best Street Photography Camera Under $500?

Is there a camera you love to use for street photography that I didn’t mention in this article?

Would you please leave your thoughts and comments below?

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