No "Z" Yet - What's Your Reason?

Started 2 months ago | Discussions thread
anotherMike Veteran Member • Posts: 9,467
Playing Contrarian to my self - why the Z instead of a D850

Yea, I don't get all the one-sided nature of things. It's so common in forum land.

So - I'm going to give compelling arguments for why I made the incorrect choice, or why someone else should consider the Z. (Because I feel one must be willing to challenge their own beliefs from time to time)

A primary motivator for getting the Z system might not be the obvious. It's actually the lenses. And wow, is that going to anger a lot of F mount lens owners who think their lens is perfect and doesn't need to be improved - I mean, if we *still* have folks who argue and cling to their seriously under-performing AFD wide angles in this era, and can't emotionally handle that the newer lenses are significantly better, imagine how these people are going to feel when the new lenses in the new mount are looking to be quite a bit better than the F mount modern versions?

I've taken a lot of hear for this, but my belief, and one I will stand firm upon, is that for critical image quality / high image quality standard users who are attempting to utilize the resolution of their 36mp and up bodies, Nikons core primes are somewhat of a disappointment. (If they had not been so, I would not have a Sigma Art/Zeiss glass collection as I have today). With the (admittedly very few) S line Z mount lenses, it's becoming apparent that this is changing. I would also argue that the S line lenses could have been even better - there really should be no LOCA problems in either the 35 or 50 S if the "S" is supposed to be the superior line, and Canons 28-70/2 honestly shows more what the mount advantage can do, but both the 35 and 50 S (z mount) lenses are substantially better in several areas than any Nikon branded F mount lens, and these areas are anything near wide open. So the theater shooter, the street shooter, the astrophotography shooter, people who live near the wide end, well, the Nikon F mount glass doesn't compare and it's not close. To "defend" my own position - my lenses are not the best in class wide open any more, but due to their aberration balance, they are world class - even among the S (z mount) lenses at moderate landscape apertures, so there isn't a compelling reason to upgrade other than size - which will be my second point. But for people who want something better than Nikon brand F mount, the Z mount lenses are clearly, quite clearly, where the future is at. Look at a couple of the latest F mount lenses people think are quite good - the 19 PCE and 24/1.8G - both of those are NOT Nikon designs - the optical design was by Konica Minolta. Obviously Nikon feels they needed to put their best designers on the Z mount lenses over the past few years, to the point they subbed out some core primes they normally (IMO) would have done in house. That should tell you something. So from a landscape shooter, if one is using non-Nikon best-in-class F mount primes (Sigma Art, best of Zeiss), not a lot of reason to get into the Z mount lenses. If one is shooting Nikon F mount primes for landscape/studio tasks, the Z mount lenses will be moderately, but not substantially better. For those shooting any F mount prime (for the most part - there are exceptions like the Sigma 40 art which probably is insanely incredible), and shoot wide open, well, bad news here - the Z mount lenses are considerably better.

So in terms of lenses, one has to look at matching tool to task - if you shoot wide open, and are considering Z, that's probably the way to go.

The second item is size. I put chips on a gamble that airlines will NOT further constrict (at least domestically) carry on size. If they do, I'm screwed. A Z "system" with the really good (even if  not "the best") S line lenses is a lot smaller lighter than the "best in class" F mount lenses plus D850. This as well is something to think about.

And as such, if I only shot landscape, I'm pretty sure I'd have a Z7, warts and all, but I'm gambling my studio work, which I do more of, will persist for a few more years and as such, I chose the D850. But I think I've analyzed both "sides" of the argument, and can see both choices.


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