After careful consideration, the Canon EOS R5 appears to be a top choice for freelance photographers seeking a balance of image quality, versatility, and affordability. This camera has received high praise for its Dual Pixel AF CMOS II system, which delivers excellent still images. It is also well-suited for shooting both stills and video, making it a versatile option for photographers who work in a variety of fields. Additionally, the EOS R5 offers a range of features that professionals will find helpful, such as a fast frame rate and a reliable autofocus system.
That being said, the Nikon Z9 is also worth considering, as it is an exceptional camera for shooting both stills and video. It boasts a fast frame rate and delivers excellent image quality, making it a great choice for photographers who need to capture fast-moving subjects. However, the lens options for the Z9's RF-mount are still somewhat limited, which may be a drawback for some photographers. Ultimately, the best camera for a freelance photographer will depend on their specific needs and budget. Both the Canon EOS R5 and Nikon Z9 are excellent options that offer a great balance of image quality, versatility, and affordability.