Watch Out, Sony – Nikon’s Z-Series Full-Frame Mirrorless System Launches With Aplomb

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After months of dropping hints and weeks of releasing teaser movies, Nikon has lastly formally unveiled its Z sequence mirrorless camera system. Their launch of the Z-series concerned two full-frame (FX-format) cameras, three lenses, and an F-mount (FTZ) adaptor, with extra lenses and equipment within the pipeline.

Nikon Z7 – The Z-series Full-Frame Mirrorless Flagship

The Z7 is Nikon’s new flagship mirrorless camera. Picture: Nikon

The Nikon Z7 is the top-of-the-line camera for the Z-series, sporting a 45.7-megapixel backside-illuminated full-frame CMOS sensor with a local ISO vary of 64-25600. It comprises Nikon’s newest EXPEED 6 image processor, and helps steady taking pictures as much as 9 FPS. With a whopping 493 autofocus factors overlaying as much as 90% of the body, the Z7 is ready to focus rapidly and precisely no matter the place you place your topic.

Z6 – Full Body Mirrorless for the Plenty

The Nikon Z7’s cheaper twin, the Z6. Picture: Nikon

A small step down from the Nikon Z7 is the Z6, equivalent to the Z7 in all points aside from the sensor. The Z6 features a lesser 24.5-megapixel backside-illuminated CMOS sensor, with has a local ISO vary of 100-51200. With the diminished decision, the EXPEED 6 image processor is ready to deal with a quicker steady taking pictures pace of 12 FPS. The Z6 additionally has barely diminished autofocusing capabilities, with 273 autofocus factors overlaying the 90% of the body. This covers the identical space because the Z7, however with lesser factors, which means it won't have the ability to focus as quick or as precisely at some parts of the body.

Frequent Options

Each the Nikon Z7 and Z6 feature a 3.2-inch tilting LCD screen, a boon for videographers craving for a real Nikon video-making instrument. Picture: Nikon

The headline feature on each cameras is, surely, in-body image stabilization. In a primary for Nikon, each camera our bodies help 5-axis in-camera stabilization, making image stabilization the job of the physique as a substitute of the lens like Nikon has completed prior to now. This has been made attainable by way of Nikon’s adoption of a new Z-mount, which marks a departure from nearly 60 years of the F-mount on flagship units.

Moreover permitting extra axes for stabilization, transferring the stabilization perform to the physique permits for all lenses connected to be stabilized, even these not initially designed with the feature. This might be an enormous plus for these with a big assortment of F-mount classic glass. When paired with fashionable lenses that already feature built-in optical stabilization, the Z-series cameras are capable of work along side the lens to supply enhanced stabilization.

One other massive feature of each cameras is their video recording capabilities. Whereas Nikon’s DSLR our bodies have been incrementally increase their video recording functionalities, the Z-series intently mimics the capabilities of very succesful video-capable mirrorless cameras like as Sony’s A7 sequence. Each the Nikon Z7 and Z6 help 4K recording as much as 30FPS, and 1080p recording as much as 120FPS. In addition they feature Lively D-Lighting, digital stabilization, focus peaking, in addition to 10-bit N-Log HDMI output.

The digital viewfinder on the Z-series is a 3.69-million-dot OLED screen with 100% body protection at 0.8x magnification, whereas the rear screen is a 3.2-inch tilting 2.1-million-dot LCD with a 170° viewing angle. The our bodies are weather-sealed to the “identical degree of energy and sturdiness” because the D850, and include the identical software person interface as Nikon’s DSLRs. The cameras feature a single XQD card slot (What had been you considering, Nikon?!) and have built-in WiFi and Bluetooth for image switch. In case you choose utilizing a cable, there's a USB Sort C port for high-speed information switch.


The Nikkor Z 35mm f/1.8 S is one in every of three lenses that Nikon is launching with its Z-series cameras. Picture: Nikon

Nikon can be debuting its new Z-mount. With a 55mm diameter and 16mm flange distance, the Z-mount opens up a complete new realm of prospects, permitting Nikon to provide lenses that are now not constrained by its ageing F-mount.

At launch, the Z-series can have 3 lenses obtainable: the NIKKOR Z 24-70mm f/4 S, the NIKKOR Z 35mm f/1.8 S, and the NIKKOR Z 50mm f/1.8S. To maintain up with the competitors, Nikon retains early adopters on their toes with six extra lenses slated for launched subsequent 12 months, one in every of which is the NIKKOR Z 58mm f/0.95 S Noct. The quickest lens in Nikon’s historical past, the 58mm Noct is an illustration of the alternatives opened up by Nikon’s choice to launch the new Z-mount. Nevertheless, with such a skinny focal airplane, this lens will, sadly, be handbook focus solely.

Different lenses within the pipeline embody a 20mm f/1.8, 24-70mm f/2.8, 70-200mm f/2.8 and 14-24mm f/2.8. Confer with Nikon’s lens timeline under for extra particulars.

Nikon’s roadmap reveals 6 lenses within the pipeline for 2019, and at the least 3 extra in 2020. Picture: Nikon

For many who already personal a large assortment of Nikon’s F-mount lenses, Nikon can be launching the Nikon FTZ Lens Adaptor, which is able to adapt your F-mount lenses to the new Z-mount with full autofocus and metering performance. The adaptor will help F-mount lenses from AI-type onwards, which quantities to properly over 300 lenses launched since 1977. Just like the Z-series our bodies and far of Nikon’s vary lenses, the FTZ adaptor is climate sealed.

Some Ideas

The new FTZ adaptor lets you use your F-mount lenses on a Z-series physique. Picture: Nikon

The discharge of the Z-series marks Nikon’s grand entrance into the world full-frame mirrorless cameras. Its earlier effort, the Nikon 1 sequence, featured cameras with 1-inch sensors, was aimed extra at amateurs and hobbyists. It failed to draw a big following, which had resulted in Nikon discontinuing the 1 sequence earlier this 12 months.

At first look, it's apparent that Nikon has modeled a lot of its vary after Sony’s A7 sequence of cameras. The Nikon Z7 and Nikon Z6 feature many comparable features and capabilities as Sony’s A7RIII and A7III, and these cameras are undoubtedly anticipated to go head-to-head available in the market.

At this level, Sony’s cameras are the tried and examined answer, backed by a variety of high-quality native lenses from Sony and Zeiss, whereas Nikon’s cameras are new to the sport with simply 3 lenses. Nevertheless, Nikon brings with it over a century of focussed legacy and experience within the images trade.

Towards Sony, Nikon arguably holds the fort by way of a mature image processing system and menu organisation. The FTZ Adaptor can even assist Nikon to bridge the hole whereas new native Z-series lenses are being designed. It is going to be attention-grabbing to watch how competitors performs out on this phase of the market.

Nikon is unquestionably playing it protected with the Z7 and Z6, with little revolutionary features of note aside from the new Z-mount. You'll be forgiven for those who thought the Nikon Z7 was simply the Nikon D850 DSLR squeezed right into a smaller physique. Primarily based on paper specifications, most critique could be directed towards its single XQD card slot.

Moreover the truth that XQD is a typical that's not broadly adopted or supported, cameras available in the market right now feature 2 card slots, giving professionals a sure degree of redundancy and peace of thoughts whereas taking pictures assignments. This had been a ache level for Sony’s A7 sequence of cameras earlier than the corporate rectified it in later iterations.

The Nikon Z7 and Z6 mirrorless cameras could be a long-awaited option for die-hard Nikonites trying to get into videography. Regardless of makes an attempt to implement video-friendly features on their DSLRs, mirrorless cameras have all the time been a greater medium for film-making. Nikon’s Z-mount would seamlessly combine Nikkor lens investments, bringing Nikon into the mirrorless age with out sacrificing its distinctive design language, trademark operation fashion, and attribute image efficiency.

Value and Availability

Entrance view of the new Z-series cameras. Each cameras are equivalent in form and measurement. Picture: Nikon

Each the Nikon Z7 and Nikon Z6 might be obtainable from 27 September 2018. The Nikon Z7 will price USD 3,400 (SGD 4,665) for the physique solely, or USD 4,000 (SGD 5,488)as a equipment with the 24-70mm f/4S. The Nikon Z6 will price USD1,996 (SGD 2,739) for the physique solely, and USD2,600 (SGD 3,568) bundled with the lens.

The NIKKOR Z 24-70mm f/4 S and 35mm f/1.8 S will price USD 1,000 (SGD 1,372) and USD 850 (SGD 1,166) respectively, and also will be obtainable from 27 September 2018. The 50mm f/1.8 S will price USD 600 (SGD 823), and might be obtainable in late October.

The Nikon FTZ Adaptor can even be obtainable from 27 September 2018 retailing at 250USD (SGD 343).

Native pricing and availability in Singapore have but to be introduced, SGD costs are conversions at charges of the time of publishing.

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