The 7 Best Black Friday Camera Deals of 2015
posted Wednesday, November 25, 2015 at 4:49 PM EST
Hey! A lot of the deals on this page are still valid, even beyond Black Friday itself, but note that we've now posted our Cyber Monday Camera Deals 2015 page, which we'll be updating as we get into Cyber Monday itself. We've already posted the 5 best deals we've found so far, but will be scanning offers and updating through the day on Monday, as new deals come out. Check it out, there's some sweet bargains there already, and check back during the day on Monday!
Our regular readers will know that we always compile a massive list of the best Black Friday deals, and this season is no different! So if you want a birds-eye view of all the photo deals out there, check out our roundup of 210 great Black Friday camera deals!
But we realize sometimes you may want a little guidance on the best deals. Are you wondering how best to spend your hard-earned cash this Friday?
We've put together a quick list of our seven(ish) favorite Black Friday camera deals of 2015. Not only are these deals impressive, they are also all cameras we've tested, thoroughly enjoy and can recommend without reservation. So, without further ado, here's our top 7:
Updated 1am Black Friday morning: Bumped the count to 7 vs 5, adding deals for the Panasonic GM5 (wow!) and Olympus O-MD E-M5 (wow again!)
#0. Not even a Black Friday Deal: The Crazy Deal of the Year!
Late addition! This might be the "Crazy Deal of the Year." The Olympus E-PL6 with a 14-42mm Kit is selling for just $299 these days, but it gets even better on Black Friday! When you use code
9AVIJHCF5T at checkout on Amazon you save $50, giving you a fantastic camera and lens for just $250 (thanks to JohnO for the pointer!) The E-PL6 sports many of the same specs as the E-PL5, but offers some new software-based improvements like expanded Low ISO 100 and timelapse movie mode, and now it's available for a crazy-low price! If you're looking for the best possible deal on a great entry-level interchangeable-lens camera, this is it!
(Reader "But here's an even better deal" in the comments thread below pointed us to a deal from Samy's Camera in Los Angeles, on the Pentax K-S1: $299, with a $100 mail-in rebate! That's for a very feature-rich DSLR, with an APS-C sensor and 20.2 megapixels of resolution. We haven't tested the K-S1, but the K-S2 did very well, so we have no reason to believe that there's anything wrong with the K-S1's image quality. The catch? The K-S1 styling is a bit gaudy, with some LED lights in the grip (that can be turned off). Check it out and if you're OK with the design, it probably does qualify as the craziest camera deal of all time.
Ok, now on with the Black Friday list...
Black Friday Camera Deal #1
Canon SL1 2-Lens Bundle with PIXMA Pro-100 Printer & Shoulder Bag
(A sweet little camera, all the lenses most people will need, and an excellent printer!)
$399 after instant and mail-in rebates (compare to $1,099)
Chalk it up to Black Friday, this is a pretty insane deal. The Canon SL1 is a couple of years old now, but is an absolutely great little camera! It's super-compact, takes great pictures, and sports a nice range of features. Here's the kicker, though: This deal includes the 18-55mm kit lens, and a 75-300mm telephoto zoom lens, and a Canon PIXMA Pro-100 printer and a 50-pk of photo paper.
This is a LOT of gear for a seriously LOW price! Not only do you get an excellent, super-compact APS-C Canon DSLR with two zoom lenses, you also get a highly-regarded, professional Canon photo printer, a 50-pack of 13 x 19 photo paper and a Canon shoulder bag. The Canon PIXMA Pro-100 is the printer we use in-house, for making comparison prints from our test shots. Excellent print quality, smooth, reliable operation, and a just insane deal, when bundled with the camera and two lenses here.
Hmm... A camera, two lenses and a printer for $399? Maybe this should be the crazy deal of the year? Either way, you can't go wrong!
Read our Canon SL1 Review for more details.
Black Friday Camera Deal #2
Fujifilm X-T10 with 18-55mm & 55-200mm Lenses Kit
(Fuji's amazing X-Trans sensor and 2 superb lenses!)
$1,399 (compare to $1,799)
Fuji's really made waves with their mirrorless line, built around their phenomenal X-Trans sensor technology. The new, easier-to-use and smaller Fuji X-T10 is a high quality, stylish camera that captures great images. And now, paired with two of Fuji higher-end XF-series zoom lens -- the 18-55 f/2.8-4 OIS and 55-200mm f/3.5-4.8 OIS lenses, you have a very capable, high-performance kit, all for a solid $400 discount.
This is really a pretty premium setup for an excellent price. Fuji does a particularly good job with their lenses; despite the fact that these are what might be called "kit" lenses, they're really high-grade optics. The 18-55mm is very sharp wide open across its focal length range, with low distortion and vignetting, and chromatic aberration that only creeps up in the corners at the wide angle end. For its part, the 55-200mm is sharp from corner to corner, with almost zero distortion, extremely low vignetting and very low chromatic aberration. If you're looking for a great camera with high-quality optics at an affordable price point, this Black Friday deal for the X-T10 with its two-lens kit has you covered, from wide angle to a very decent telephoto focal length.
Read our Fuji X-T10 Review for more details.
Black Friday Camera Deal #3
Nikon D3200 with 18-55mm & 55-200mm VR Lenses
(Our 2013 Entry-level DSLR of the year, at a fantastic price!)
$396.95 (compare to $876.95)
Though it's been supplanted by the Nikon D3300, the Nikon D3200 is still a really excellent, capable camera. In fact, we were so impressed by it, we awarded it our 2013 Entry-Level Interchangeable Lens Camera of the Year! With a 24.2-megapixel APS-C sensor, the D3200 is still one of the highest resolution crop-sensor cameras on the market, and is just a pleasure to use. Bundled with two zooms, this kit is altogether compact, versatile and extremely affordable. This is by far the most affordable way to gain entry to Nikon's whole system. If you're a Nikon shooter, this would be an ideal gift for your spouse/significant other, child, relative, or anyone else you love enough to give the gift of Nikon ;-)
Read our Nikon D3200 Review for more details.
Black Friday Camera Deal #4
Panasonic GX8 body-only
($200 off Panasonic's Flagship GX model!)
$997.99 (compare to $1,197.99)
Panasonic's newest rangefinder-esque mirrorless camera sports the highest resolution Four Thirds sensor ever at 20.3-megapixels, and takes the reins as their flagship GX model. Like a Swiss Army Knife, the GX8 has tons of features, including a new "Dual I.S." 5-axis stabilization system, 4K video recording and better high ISO performance just to name a few. We haven't quite wrapped up our review of it yet, but have been just super-impressed with this beauty. If you're into the Micro Four Thirds system for its compactness and excellent range of high-quality lenses, this is a great deal on a really fantastic body!
Read our Panasonic GX8 Review for more details.
Black Friday Camera Deal #5
Panasonic GM5 with 12-32mm lens
(An unreal price on THE most compact interchangeable-lens camera!)
Smaller than some fixed-lens cameras, the Panasonic GM5 gives you interchangeable-lens flexibility and exceptional image quality from its Micro Four Thirds size sensor, in a package that actually can fit in a pants pocket! (Maybe not skinny jeans, but we're telling you, this thing is tiny - it's just 3.9 x 2.3 x 1.4 inches!) It's an ideal travel companion for those wanting to bring back top-quaity photos and videos, without having to lug the bulk of most interchangeable-lens cameras, including even other mirrorless models.
People's first reaction upon seeing the GM5 is usually one of near-shock, that a fully-functional mirrorless camera could be made that small. When they see the quality of the photos and videos it shoots, though, their jaws inevitably drop another couple of inches. As much as we love this little jewel, though, (it's IR Publisher and Founder Dave Etchells' hands-down favorite travel camera) we've had to admit that its tiny size came at significant cost, with a list price was $899 at introduction, definitely some serious bread. It's too bad, because there are a lot of people out there who'd absolutely love the GM5, but just can't afford it.
Thanks to Black Friday and what looks like a clearance sale, though, you can get your hands on this tiny gem of a camera for just $469! At that price, it's a slam-dunk for anyone wanting a truly pocketable (and really easy to fit into a purse) interchangeable-lens camera, whether for everyday family photography or a round-the-world trip. Seriously, if you want a versatile, compact camera that snaps excellent pictures and movies, run, don't walk to take advantage of this deal! At this writing (a bit past midnight, East Coast time), B&H is completely out of stock, Amazon is showing only 4 units left, at a price of $497, but Adorama is still showing stock on hand, and also has the more-rare red version available as well.
It looks like Panasonic is discontinuing this model, so once the current stock sells through, it'll be gone for good. Seriously, buy this camera quick or you'll lose your chance! It's a heckuva a deal!
Black Friday Camera Deal #6
Sony A6000 body-only "Deluxe Bundle"
(See selling page for version with 16-50mm lens included as well)
$398 (compare to $648)
Includes Sony 16GB Class 10 UHS-1 SD card, Case Logic camera bag and Wasabi Power 2-pack Battery & Charger
The Sony A6000 has more or less dominated our top-cameras list ever since it was announced, and for good reason! Affordable from the get-go (and now even more so), the A6000's image quality is very impressive and its performance nimble. It's comfortable yet compact ergonomics plus a built-in EVF has made it a hit with both beginners and enthusiasts. This "Deluxe Bundle" Black Friday camera deal from Amazon sweetens the pie by tossing in a number of free accessories and extras. Given our test results, our readers overwhelming response to it, and the surely hundreds of thousands of them Sony's sold, this is a pretty safe bet, this Black Friday.
If you're not already into Sony's E-mount mirrorless line, there's also a bundle available on the same selling page, where it's kitted with Sony's very capable 16-50mm zoom lens. That version is $548 as of this writing, still an excellent deal on a fantastic camera, but not quite as rich a discount as for the body by itself. Just click on the button labeled w/16-50mm, and then on the Holiday Bundle button below, for the configuration that'll get you the added goodies.
Read our Sony A6000 Review for more details.
Black Friday deal #7
Olympus OM-D E-M5 with 14-42mm lens
(Our 2012 Compact System Camera of the Year, for $419!)
$419 (compare to $899.99)
The Olympus OM-D E-M5 made some real waves when it first came out a couple of years back, and is still a phenomenal camera. It's been supplanted by the OM-D E-M5 II, which has added a number of cool features, but that takes nothing away from the original model. It takes fantastic photos, and is simply a joy to use, sporting Olympus' excellent 5-axis in-body image stabilization system, an incredibly sharp 1.44 mega-dot resolution electronic viewfinder, and can shoot up to 9 frames per second. It's also a Micro Four Thirds camera, so can use any of a very wide range of excellent lenses from either Olympus or Panasonic. (There's a great range of both affordable and seriously excellent lenses available from both companies; it's a lens ecosystem that takes a back seat to nobody.)
We're not sure when the price change happened, but we'd initially seen a Black Friday deal offering this camera at $499, already a fantastic deal. (Its original list price was $899!) Now, though, B&H has chopped another $80 off the price, selling it for just $419! Check it out, this is an incredible bargain on an absolutely first-rate, no-excuses Micro Four Thirds system camera. This is a near-perfect camera for someone looking to get into interchangeable-lens photography on a budget, without having to accept any compromises in camera performance. Just buy it, you'll thank us later! :-)
Bonus Black Friday deal: Panasonic Lumix G 25mm f/1.7
(A great "nifty fifty" for your Micro Four Thirds body!)
$99 (compare to $249.99)
Okay, I know we said "Top 5," but reader "Turbofrog" alerted us to this incredibly low price for the brand-new Panasonic 25mm f/1.7 lens. Normally selling for a still-affordable $250, this lens can now be yours for just $99! Alongside the wider 20mm f/1.7 and longer 42.5mm f/1.7, this 50mm-equivalent lens is the third in their recent "affordable f/1.7" family, and offers a classic focal length and bright aperture all in a package that's just a hair over two inches long and just shy of two and a half inches in diameter. While not a macro, it also focuses down to a surprisingly close 25cm / 9.8 inches. Here's your chance to get a very nice Micro Four Thirds equivalent to the traditional "Nifty Fifty", at an amazing, Black-Friday price!
Read more about the Panasonic 25mm f/1.7 here.