5 Best Field Monitors for Your DSLR (in 2019)

Are you struggling to pick a DSLR field monitor?

Choosing a field monitor can be frustrating and complex.

Fortunately, we’ve prepared a guide in which we reveal the 5 best field monitors for your DSLR (in 2019).

best field monitors for DSLRs
The five best DSLR field monitors

And we’ll help you figure out which field monitor is best for you!

Related: Best Monitors for Photographers

How to Choose the Best Field Monitor for You

If you’re selecting a field monitor, there are a few key features you should consider.

These features matter more than anything else.

They’ll determine whether you choose an incredible monitor, one that displays gorgeous pictures in the field–or a poor monitor, one that just doesn’t do the job.

Related Article: How to Make Great Videos (With Your DSLRs or Mirrorless Cameras)

Size and Weight

The perfect field monitor is lightweight. It’s small. It’s portable.

Because you need to transport it while traveling–and you need to carry it in the field.

lightweight field monitor
You need a lightweight field monitor, especially if you like to shoot handheld

If you buy a monitor that’s too heavy and bulky…

…you’re going to hate using it. Especially if you handhold a lot.

At the same time, you want a monitor big enough to give you a usable display.

That’s why I recommend monitors in the five to seven-inch range. These will be small enough for travel–but still do a great job.

Field of View

The best field monitors have a wide field of view.

Why?

The wider the field of view, the easier it is to see the monitor while shooting.

Example of field of view monitor
The best monitors have a wide field of view

A monitor with a small field of view will only give you an accurate display if you’re looking directly at it. And this isn’t ideal for video recording.

You want flexibility. You want to be able to move while watching the monitor.

Brightness

Brightness is the most basic criteria for monitors–and one of the most important.

You can use an ultra-simple guideline:

The brighter the display, the better.

bright DSLR field monitor
The brighter the monitor, the better

If you’re shooting outdoors, a dark display will be nearly impossible to see. Even with a hood, they’re tough to use.

And that’s exactly what you don’t want.

Resolution

One of the biggest reasons to purchase an external field monitor…

…is the limited resolution of DSLR LCDs.

example of high-resolution monitor
Resolution is one of the key monitor features

So it will come as no surprise that resolution matters. A lot.

You don’t want to invest in a field monitor with poor resolution. If you do, you’ll end up frustrated–because the display just won’t give you good results.

Which leads me to our overall pick as the best monitor…

Our Pick as the “Best Field Monitor for DSLRs”:

The Atomos Ninja Inferno

Atomos Ninja Inferno

  • Seven inches (perfect for fieldwork)
  • Full HD display (1080p)
  • Intuitive touchscreen
  • Impressive build quality

Close Second Pick for Best Field Monitor: Blackmagic Design Video Assist 4K 7”

Blackmagic Design Video Assist

  • Seven inches (perfect for use in the field)
  • Full HD display (1920 x 1200)
  • Dual SD slots
  • Well built
  • Very heavy (1.8 lb/0.8 kg)

Distant Third Pick as Best Field Monitor:  Feelworld FW279S 7″ 4K Ultra-Bright

Feelworld FW279S

  • Seven inches, perfect for field use
  • Full HD display (1920 x 1200)
  • Superb brightness for shooting in sunlight (2200 CD/m²)
  • Lightweight (but with reduced build-quality)
  • No touchscreen

Fourth: Feelworld Master MA7 7” 4K HDMI

Sale
Feelworld Master MA7
28 Reviews
Feelworld Master MA7

  • Seven-inch screen
  • Full HD display (1920 x 1200)
  • Lightweight and well built
  • Slight latency issue

Fifth: Atomos Ninja V 5” 4K HDMI

Atomos Ninja V

  • Five-inch screen for increased flexibility
  • Gorgeous picture quality
  • Lightweight
  • Decent level of brightness

1. Atomos Ninja Inferno

  • Seven-inch screen is perfect for fieldwork
  • Full HD display (1080p)
  • Intuitive touchscreen
  • Impressive build quality
  • Too heavy to handhold

Best For: Serious videographers who want the best features available (and don’t mind the weight)

Atomos Ninja Inferno field monitor
The Atomos Ninja Inferno

Out of a group of impressive field monitors, the Atomos Ninja Inferno is our favorite.

Why?

First, the size. At seven inches, the monitor is large without being unwieldy–perfect for filming in the field.

And the Ninja Inferno is full HD (1080p), with up to 10 stops of dynamic range. Which means that you won’t be disappointed with the image quality.

You’ll get a display that is crisp, clear, and beautiful to look at.

Ninja Inferno display
The Ninja Inferno offers a beautiful display

And another thing:

The Ninja Inferno is extremely bright (1500 cd/m², to be exact). With specs like that, you won’t have any trouble viewing the display, even under the sun.

Now let’s get a bit more technical:

The Inferno can display 4K video up to 60 frames per second (fps)–and it will display 1080p (full HD) at 120 fps. The monitor also supports 10-bit 4:2:2.

Another great thing about this field monitor?

It records to a 2.5” SSD unit. That way, you can plug the SSD into a computer as soon as you’ve finished recording–and edit straight off it. You won’t have to download any files to a computer first.

The Ninja Inferno is also super easy to use. Its touchscreen menu is intuitive.

And it’s very well built.

well-built field monitor
The Ninja Inferno is very well built (but rather heavy)

Unfortunately, the build quality comes with a price:

The Atomos Ninja Infero is quite heavy (2.04 lb/1.09 kg).

If you want to do handheld shooting, you’ll need a stabilization rig or a shoulder rig.

There’s one more downside to the Ninja Inferno:

The built-in fan is noisy. Sometimes it can filter through and get captured by the mic.

Obviously, this is not ideal.

That said, this truly is an excellent monitor. With a great size, gorgeous display, and lots of useful features…

…it’s the best field monitor out there.

Atomos Ninja Inferno

  • Seven inches is perfect for fieldwork
  • Full HD display (1080p)
  • Intuitive touchscreen
  • Impressive build quality

Related Article: Best DSLRs for Video Shooting (Top 7 Picks in 2018)

2. Blackmagic Design Video Assist 4K 7”

  • Seven inches (perfect for use in the field)
  • Full HD display (1920 x 1200)
  • Dual SD slots
  • Well built
  • Very heavy (1.8 lb/0.8 kg)

Best For: Videographers looking for a great display in a robust monitor

The Blackmagic Design Video Assist is a fantastic field monitor–one impressive enough to satisfy even serious videographers.

The display is seven inches, perfect for capturing (and reviewing) videos in the field. And the resolution on the monitor is 1920 x 1200, which gives a gorgeous HD look.

Blackmagic monitor display
The Blackmagic Design Video Assist monitor

You can record 4K video up to a maximum frame rate of 30 fps.

And for HD recording?

50 and 60 fps are supported.

The Blackmagic monitor offers touchscreen functionality, which is great for easy access while shooting.

Unfortunately, the viewing angle isn’t superb:

135 degrees of viewing, compared to the Feelworld Master’s 160 degrees.

But Blackmagic offers a few other features to make up for it.

For instance, the Blackmagic monitor offers dual SD card slots.

Blackmagic dual SD card slots
The dual SD card slots are great for recording video

These allow you to plug in two SD cards for extended internal recording.

And in terms of shooting features, the Blackmagic doesn’t disappoint.

First, the Blackmagic offers focus peaking; this will ensure you always focus accurately. You’ll also get an on-screen histogram and a battery status indicator. And the top panel of the screen has the time code, frame rate, resolution, and other shooting information displayed.

blackmagic field monitor features
The Blackmagic is full of fantastic features

The only downside?

The Blackmagic is heavy.

At 1.8 lb (0.8 kg), you’ll struggle to handhold this in the field. Especially if you’re using a heavy DSLR and a well-built lens.

Otherwise, the Blackmagic is an impressive piece of tech.

Blackmagic Design Video Assist

  • Seven inches (perfect for use in the field)
  • Full HD display (1920 x 1200)
  • Dual SD slots
  • Well built
  • Very heavy (1.8 lbs/0.8 kgs)

Related Article: Best Shotgun Microphones (6 Bestselling External DSLR Mics)

3. Feelworld FW279S 7″ 4K Ultra-Bright Monitor

  • Seven inches, perfect for field use
  • Full HD display (1920 x 1200)
  • Superb brightness for shooting in sunlight (2200 CD/m²)
  • Lightweight (but with reduced build-quality)
  • No touchscreen

Best For: Videographers looking for a lightweight monitor (and don’t need a touchscreen)

The Feelworld FW279S offers a lot to be excited about–from a crystal-clear display to a set of useful shooting features.

Feelworld FW279S monitor example
The Feelworld FW279S monitor

The monitor is seven inches and sports a 1920 x 1200 (full HD) display. This makes for high-res, gorgeous images.

Plus, the monitor allows you to zoom in–and take advantage of the 4K support.

And another thing?

The brightness of the LCD panel…

…is superb. The Feelworld offers a brightness of 2200 CD/m².

Which means that you’ll have no trouble seeing the display, no matter the level of sunlight.

Shooting in a brightly lit studio?

No problem.

Shooting outdoors?

Just as good.

Even in harsh sunlight, the screen gives a bright and clear view of what’s being recorded.

Feelworld impressively bright monitor
The monitor is impressively bright

And check out that viewing angle:

160 degrees–which allows you to see an accurate display from almost any direction.

The monitor works with 4K / UHD up to 30 fps. 4K is supported to a maximum frame rate of 24 fps.

One thing to note: The Feelworld doesn’t have a touchscreen.

Is this a problem?

That depends. If you often shoot in cold weather, having external buttons makes work much easier. But if you can’t live without a touchscreen, then I recommend you look at another option.

And another disadvantage of the Feelworld FW279S?

Its build quality.

This monitor doesn’t feel particularly robust, and that’s not a surprise–the Feelworld contains more plastic than its competitors.

On the other hand, this contributes to its impressive weight: 0.87 lb (395 g).

back of Feelworld field monitor
The monitor is plasticky, but very lightweight

Bottom line?

This is an excellent monitor–one with a gorgeous display and some impressive features. It’s also incredibly lightweight.

As long as you’re okay with a plastic body and no touchscreen interface, the Feelworld may be the way to go.

Feelworld FW279S

  • Seven inches, perfect for field use
  • Full HD display (1920 x 1200)
  • Superb brightness for shooting in sunlight (2200 CD/m²)
  • Lightweight (but with reduced build-quality)
  • No touchscreen

4. Feelworld Master MA7 7” 4K HDMI DSLR Monitor

  • Seven-inch screen
  • Full HD display (1920 x 1200)
  • Lightweight and well built
  • Slight latency issue

Best For: Videographers who require a lightweight, flexible monitor

What makes the Feelworld Master MA7 special?

Fortunately, quite a lot.

Feelworld Master MA7 monitor
The Feelworld Master MA7 monitor

For one, the seven-inch screen is perfectly sized. Not small enough to be frustrating, but not so heavy that you’ll break your back.

And the build quality is impressive. The monitor is made out of aluminum, and it shows.

Now, good-quality monitors generally come with a tradeoff:

Good build quality means a heavy monitor. But fortunately, Feelworld doesn’t seem to have fallen into this trap. It is well-built and light.

Feelworld monitor build quality
The Feelworld Master MA7 is nicely built, but it’s also light

Now, the display is full HD (1900×1200 pixels). And the Feelworld supports 4K video. This means that the screen will look all-around incredible.

Now, a quick word about latency…

The MA7 has a slight bit of lag.

About 4 frames–and you will notice this when shooting.

Should that bother you? It all depends on whether you think 4 frames of latency is a deal-breaker. If you’re shooting a lot of fast action, it may be a slight issue.

Apart from that, it shouldn’t do much.

And what’s a little latency…

…when you’ve got so many other benefits?

(And for a bargain price, too!)

Sale
Feelworld Master MA7
28 Reviews
Feelworld Master MA7

  • Seven inch screen
  • Full HD display (1920 x 1200)
  • Lightweight and well built
  • Slight latency issue

5. Atomos Ninja V 5” 4K HDMI Recording Field Monitor

  • Five inch screen for increased flexibility
  • Gorgeous picture quality
  • Lightweight
  • Decent level of brightness

Best For: Videographers who want a travel-ready, flexible monitor

The Atomos Ninja V comes in fifth place for best field monitor.

But don’t let that worry you.

The Atomos Ninja V monitor
The Atomos Ninja V monitor

Why we picked the Atomos Ninja V?

It’s an excellent monitor.

First, let’s talk about the size:

Five inches.

Still within the nice working range for DSLR field monitors.

And small enough to be easily mounted on your camera via a ball-head mount. This is especially useful when you want to travel light, and don’t want to pack a lot of gear.

Plus, unlike its bigger sibling, the Atomos Ninja V is wonderfully lightweight (11 oz/0.31 kg). You won’t need a shoulder rig or stabilizer to handle this monitor.

The Ninja V also offers some wonderful picture quality.

The screen is full HD (1080p), with a 10-stop dynamic range. This will make for gorgeous pictures in the field–sharp and beautifully rendered.

Plus, the monitor offers 1000 cd/m² brightness–which ensures that the display will be highly visible, even under the sun.

And the touchscreen interface is intuitive and easy to use.

Did I mention that this monitor can display 4K videos at 60 fps?

The Ninja V also includes a small SSD drive. This will allow you to store several hours of video–and plug it straight into your computer, without having to download any files.

Unfortunately, the Atomos Ninja V suffers from the same problem as the Ninja Inferno: The fan makes noise. And this can be picked up (if you have a mic mounted next to it).

But overall?

This is a nice, lightweight field monitor–offered at a decent price.

Atomos Ninja V

  • Five-inch screen for increased flexibility
  • Gorgeous picture quality
  • Lightweight
  • Decent level of brightness

Best Field Monitor for DSLRs: Which Is Right for You?

Now that we’ve given you our best field monitor picks…

You should have a good idea of the best monitor for you.

But if you’re still struggling:

The Ninja Inferno and Blackmagic monitors are perfect for videographers who want a full-featured display (and don’t mind some extra weight).

Whereas the Feelworld FW279S and the Feelworld Master?

They’re more suited for handholding and flexibility in the field.

Finally, the Atomos Ninja V is in a class of its own. Smaller than the other options, it’s perfect for frequent travel.

Related Article: Best Lenses for DSLR Video Shooting (6 Top Picks)


Note: Last Amazon.com Price Update: 2019-03-23 | Refer to our Affiliate Disclosure and Disclaimer.

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