Digital Camera Holiday Gift Guide - $2000+ Cameras

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In part 5 of our 2014 digital camera holiday gift guide, we looked at a series of $600 to $2000 cameras that currently offer entry level versions of what some might call professional camera systems. In part 6 we will dive into the best cameras in the $2000+ price range. These cameras will introduce high end dSLR models. Ideally, these cameras are for dedicated enthusiasts and professionals, those who need full manual and creative control, with the ability to swap out a variety of zoom and prime lenses. These cameras often have full frame 35mm image sensors, and are increasingly used to capture beautiful time lapses as well as independent feature film and television series. The one thing to note about this category, is that these cameras are not replaced each and every year. Therefore, it features some still very outstanding 2013 model year cameras.

So jump into the sixth part of our 2014 Holiday gift guide, the $2000+ digital camera range. Our following recommendations are based on quality, features and the best value available on the digital camera marketplace above $2000 dollars (MSRP).

 

Nikon Df silver 50mm kit Top Pick:
Nikon D750
(Full Review)

The newest entry to Nikon's dSLR lineup is the powerful D750. Sporting a 24.3-Megapixel FX-format CMOS imaging sensor, EXPEED 4 image processor, 51-area AF system with 15 cross-type sensors and a 3D Color Matrix Metering III sensor with a 91,000-pixels, Tilting 3.2-inch LCD, built-in WiFi and the same video capabilities as the D810; this is an incredibly powerful camera in a smaller, more compact body than most full-frame dSLRs. Along with these amazing components, the camera also features a slew of automatic and creative features that allow anyone to pick up and shoot with this camera. From full automatic shooting to some great camera effects modes, there are plenty of creative modes for images, even if you are not sure how to create them on your own. For the more advanced users that this camera is really designed for, the camera will do everything you can imagine, and it will do it well. The camera is available body-only or in a kit with the 24-120mm VR zoom lens. Two great features that are just making their way to these higher end dSLR models are a very welcome on the D750. First Nikon has finally built-in the WiFi feature, no more attachments necessary to share your images with the world. As long as you have a smartphone or tablet with cellular service, you can connect the camera and instantly share your images (so long as you have a good cell signal). The WiFi connection also allows you to view and copy the images from the camera to your phone. Once connected your phone can also be used as a remote to control the camera. The second great feature is the high resolution tilting LCD screen. While some people do not like having a LCD screen that moves, we find that it adds some versatility to the camera. It allows you shoot in awkward situations, over or around, with accuracy. No need to point, shoot and pray that you get the shot that you are after. Pick this up if you are looking for an upgrade from your current Nikon dSLR. Perfect for anyone with an older Full-Frame, looking for their first Fill-Frame or anyone that will mainly be shooting video and looking to save a little money over the D810.

Click below to see the best price on the Nikon D750.

Nikon Df, black, body only

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Sony  Alpha 7 kit

Sony Alpha 7 and Alpha 7R
(Full Review)

Sony has announced two new Alphas Series cameras. The a7 and a7R debuted as the world's smallest full-frame interchangeable lens cameras last year. Both cameras include full-frame image sensors mated to the new, 3x faster BIONZ "X" image processing engine, as well as Full HD 1080/60p Video Recording with full P/S/A/M exposure controls, a XGA OLED Tru-Finder (2.4M dots), a 3.0-inch tiltable LCD display, and 9 customizable buttons with 46 assignable functions. Wi-Fi is built in to both new models, so users can use Sony's PlayMemories Camera Apps with compatible iOS and Android smartphones. More apps are coming for the a7 and a7R, but for now the only two available are Multiple Exposure App and Smart Remote Control. Multiple Exposure automatically combines sequential exposures into one shot. And the Remote control app allows you to control your camera and adjust settings from your phone. NFC (Near Field Communication) is available with enabled Android devices as well. So what are the major differences between the a7R and a7 models?

The a7R costs approximately $600 more than its sibling and is designed for professional photographers and advanced enthusiasts who need a smaller, secondary full-frame camera. The a7R features a 36.4-megapixel Exmor CMOS image sensor with no optical low pass filter (most have them) for "added resolving power and increased image detail." The a7R also includes the new Fast Intelligent AF (auto focus) system with Lock-on AF, Eye AF, and Flexible Spot AF.

For about $600 less, the a7 is designed for mid-level APS-C DSLR users. It also includes Lock-on AF, Eye AF, and Flexible Spot AF, but in a slightly different Fast Hybrid AF system, which combines Phase-Detect & Contrast-Detect AF methods. You also get 5 frames-per-second continuous shooting (with auto focus) in full resolution off the 24.3-megapixel Full-Frame Exmor CMOS image sensor.

Pick either one of these up if you want one of the best cameras available in 2014. And be sure to check out the cameras' Sample Photos.

Click on a model below to see the best prices for the Sony a7R and a7.

Sony Alpha a7R28-70mm kit KIT Sony Alpha a7R body only

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Canon EOS 5D Mark III Canon EOS 5D Mark III
(Our Preview)

Ladies and gentlemen, meet the Canon EOS-5D Mark III. A full-frame camera designed for filmmakers and photographers alike. From the 1D X, there's the DIGIC 5+ Imaging Processor as well as a high-performance 61-point High Density Reticular AF (autofocus) array with up to 41 cross-type point and five dual cross-type points available. The Mark III's new processor means the fastest 5D camera ever, with continuous shooting speeds up to 6 frames per second (a 50% uptick over the Mark II). The Mark II also boasts better low-light performance than its ancestor, with a 2-stop ISO improvement, as well as improved weather resistance for sports and wildlife photographers. If you're a filmmaker or television producer, the 5D Mark III is capable of shooting multiple resolutions in the H.264 compression format at various frame rates (all while embedding SMPTE-compliant time code: Full 1080p in 24p, 25p, and 30p; 720p in 60 and 50 fps; and 480p at 30 or 25 fps. WIth the DIGIC+ processor you're going to get the best looking dSLR-recorded HD possible, and continuos recording time has been improved up to 29 minutes and 59 seconds. There's also manual audio control and a first-ever-for-the-series headphone jack for audio monitoring. Pick this up if you want a camera that takes family portrats as well as it captures Hollywood blockbusters.

Click below to see the best price on the Canon EOS 5D Mark III .

Canon EOS 5D Mark III

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Canon EOS 7D Mark II Canon EOS 7D Mark II
(Our Preview)

The EOS 7D Mark II is a powerful mid-level DSLR. In fact, as of September 2014, it is the most powerful EOS camera in the line up, being the first to add dual DIGIC 6 image processors to a 20.2-megapixel APS-C sized CMOS image sensor as well as a new 65-point All Cross-Type AF system. In other words, the 7D MKII is fast, capable of shooting at 10 frames-per-second continuously for up to 31 full resolution RAW images, or up to a staggering 1,090 Large Fine JPEGs. With capabilities like those, you'll appreciate the incorporated Canon Dual Pixel CMOS AF (DAF) Technology, which translates to dramatically improved AF performance in video and Live View still imaging modes -- in other words, the 7D MKII is really good at tracking fast-moving subjects. Or maybe you're more into shooting video. The 7D MKII has you covered there as well. You can record Full HD 1080p video at 24 or 30fps, or 720p HD video at 60fps to create stunning slow motion projects. The 7D MKII has a built-in microphone, a headphone jack for audio monitoring, and even a mini HDMI port for recording uncompressed HD video to external recorders. Finally, the 7D works with Canon's STM (Stepping Motor) lens, which are virtually silent as they adjust focal settings. Pick this camera up if you want an affordable, well appointed, and powerful DSLR, but don't need a full-frame image sensor.

Click below to see the best prices for the Canon EOS 7D Mark II.

Canon EOS 7D Mark II