We tour Nikon's Sendai factory
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We tour Nikon's Sendai factory

At the heart of any interchangeable lens camera is the mount. Nikon makes body and lens flanges for both the F and Z mount at Sendai, from brass and stainless steel. While professional-grade ILCs (D5/D850/Z7) utilize stainless steel for their mounts for maximum strength, Nikon's enthusiast range (D500 and below) use brass. Brass is softer and easier to machine than steel, but deforms more easily. This makes it risky for the Z mount, with its short flange-back distance of only 16mm.

On the lens side, Nikon's low-end consumer zooms use plastic mounts, and all of the rest employ brass.