Portrait, Wedding and Events Mirrorless Camera Recommendations for 2021

Portrait Sample Picture

What is the Ultimate Canon Portrait, Wedding and Events Mirrorless Camera?

  1. Canon EOS R5
  2. Canon EOS R6
  3. Canon EOS R

Do you prefer a Canon DSLR camera? Our Portrait, Wedding and Events DSLR Camera recommendations page has these suggestions.

What are the important features for a portrait, wedding and events camera?

While a simple portrait session can be rescheduled, weddings and similar events are big deals with huge effort and costs put into them and they cannot be repeated. These events will go on regardless of the photographer and any issues the photographer encounters. Since the photographer is obligated to deliver high-grade and highly-anticipated images from the event, issues must be avoided (quality gear) or dealt with immediately (redundant gear).

Redundancy is very important for wedding and event photographers and a basic redundancy practice is to utilize dual memory card slots for simultaneous image storage with availability of a backup immediately ready to go off site. This of course requires a camera with that capability. Wireless file transfer is another option for immediate image backup.

Redundant cameras should be considered mandatory for important events. While the primary and backup event cameras do not have to be the same model, the backup camera must be reliable and capable enough to become the primary camera if necessary. Having all cameras being functionally similar avoids acclimation issues when switching between models.

It is somewhat difficult to understand camera reliability while shopping as most cameras seem to always reliably work. But, higher-end models typically have greater durability. The shutter is one of the most-moving camera parts and the shutter durability rating provides a glimpse into what that feature's life expectancy may be. Events can generate very high image volumes, quickly surpassing the shutter durability ratings of lower-end cameras. Shutters can be replaced but having a camera out of service is a risk exposure and there is a cost to the repair, at least partially offsetting the cost of buying a better camera initially.

A magnesium alloy frame reflects on a camera's intended use and while weather sealing may be not an expected need for photographing weddings and events, it may be needed – even indoors sometimes (ever spill a drink while a camera is hanging from your neck?).

Printing large means high resolution is important. With portraits being often output in large size (especially wedding and sports portraits), no camera has too much resolution. While the lower-end current models may have very adequate resolution for most needs, being able to print larger can make a get-the-job difference.

People events are often low light and that means high ISO performance is highly valuable. Full frame imaging sensors rule in this regard.

Wedding and event photographers should purchase the best quality gear they can afford. That advice also applies to portrait photographers, though portrait photography often has less time sensitivity and the camera requirements can often be relaxed in this case. Most cameras can capture good portraits (check out the general purpose mirrorless camera recommendations), but the ones below remain the best choices.

Portrait, Wedding and Events Camera Recommendations

Canon EOS R5 Buy  ► Rent  ►

1. Canon EOS R5

Phenomenal Camera, Outstanding AF System, Up-To-20 FPS, Ultra-High Resolution, Full-Frame Imaging Sensor

With the R5, Canon brought their much-loved 5-series to the EOS R-series mirrorless interchangeable lens camera lineup. The success of these models was reflected in inventory levels, with these cameras continuously backordered for about half a year. The best Canon image quality we've seen combined with the highest overall performance, especially from an AF perspective (including Eye AF), makes the R5 a game-changer. A pair of R5 bodies are my primary cameras. This is my favorite camera.


Canon EOS R6 Buy  ► Rent  ►

2. Canon EOS R6

Most of EOS R5 Features with Lower Resolution (Imaging Sensor and EVF) and Price, Full-Frame Imaging Sensor

The R6 brings us most of the R5 features for a lower price. Also lowered is the resolution of the electronic viewfinder and the imaging sensor. While low in comparisons, the 20 megapixel resolution is adequate for a large percentage of uses.


Canon EOS R Buy  ► Rent  ►

3. Canon EOS R

Great Value, Full-Frame Imaging Sensor

Canon's first mirrorless full-frame interchangeable lens camera delivered big, and it is now a great value.


Just as important as the camera are the lenses used on it. The Mirrorless Portrait Lens Recommendations and Mirrorless Wedding Lens Recommendations will help you select the right lens for your portrait, wedding and event cameras.

Return to the Camera Recommendations.

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