Nikon's Z7 mirrorless camera has full-frame 45MP sensor, in-body image stabilization and hybrid AF
After years of speculation and a month of teasers, Nikon has lifted the curtain on its new Z-series full-frame mirrorless system. The system will initially comprise two bodies – the flagship Z7 and midrange Z6 – alongside three lenses and an F-mount adapter. The Z7 and Z6 are physically almost identical, with the main differences being internal: pixel count, number of autofocus points and maximum burst rate.
The Z7 is a 45.7MP camera with built-in 5-axis image stabilization. It can shoot at up to 9 frames per second and capture 4K video or output a 10-bit 4:2:2 Log video stream over HDMI.
"We aim to become number 1 in full-frame mirrorless cameras in the future"
- Nobuyoshi Gokyu, Senior VP, Imaging, Nikon Inc.
The Z-mount is the largest full-frame mirrorless mount on the market with a diameter of 55mm, allowing it to support lenses as fast as F0.95. The flange distance is just 16mm, the shortest of any full-frame mirrorless system. The Z-mount has a 65% smaller flange and 17% larger diameter than the legacy F-mount, which, fundamentally, has remained more or less unchanged since the 1950s.
The Z7 is the flagship model and has a lot in common with the D850, both in terms of core features and price. It features a Nikon-designed 45.7 BSI-CMOS sensor, 5-axis in-body image stabilization and a hybrid autofocus system with 493 phase-detect points.
The magnesium alloy body is fully weather-sealed to the same level as the D850. It features an ultra-high-resolution electronic viewfinder with 3.6 million dots and 0.8x magnification, along with a 3.2" 2.1M-dot tilting touchscreen display on the rear of the camera. On the top plate is an OLED display showing current camera settings. The Z7 has a single XQD slot, which will support CFexpress via a firmware upgrade in the near future.
The camera's in-body Vibration Reduction system can reduce shake by up to 5 stops and, when used with the optional F-mount adapter, provides 5-axis stabilization for VR-equipped lenses and 3-axis for those without VR.
The camera's in-body Vibration Reduction system can reduce shake by up to 5 stops
The autofocus system features 493 PDAF points with 90% vertical and horizontal coverage. While the camera can detect faces, it lacks an equivalent to Sony's useful Eye AF. Naturally, the Z7 offers subject tracking (though it doesn't behave in the same way as the 3D Tracking system that we enjoy in Nikon's DSLRs) and it's sensitive down to -3EV on lenses with apertures of F2 and faster.
The Z7 can shoot bursts at 9 fps with full autofocus but with exposure locked on the first shot, or at 5.5 fps with with continuous exposure and focus. The Z7's buffer fills up after about 18 14-bit compressed and 23 12-bit lossless compressed Raws. Battery life is rated at 330 shots per charge (CIPA) and a battery grip will be available in the future.
Video features are plentiful. The camera captures UHD 4K video at 30p and 24p using the full width of the sensor. When using a Super 35/DX crop of 1.5x, the camera uses all the pixels in that region to produce its video. There are 435 phase-detect points available when capturing video, with both in-body and electronic VR available to reduce shake.
The Z7 supports 10-bit N-LOG (4:2:2) when output over HDMI as well as the ability to simultaneously output video (8-bit 4:2:0) while recording to the memory card. There's also live focus peaking, zebra stripes, adjustable AF tracking speeds, time code while in 4K mode.
The Nikon Z7 will be available body-only
The Z7 uses the latest version of the company's SnapBridge wireless system, which includes 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. Users can transfer JPEGs and Raws direct to a PC and, of course, remotely control the camera from a smartphone. The currently available WT-7A wireless transmitter set is also compatible, allowing Wi-Fi transfer outside the SnapBridge system.
The Nikon Z7 will be available body-only for $3399 or bundled with the 24-70mm F4 S lens for $3999 when it ships in late September.
NIKON INTRODUCES THE NEW NIKON Z MOUNT SYSTEM, AND RELEASES TWO FULL-FRAME MIRRORLESS CAMERAS: THE NIKON Z7 AND NIKON Z6
MELVILLE, NY (AUGUST 23, 2018 AT 1:01 A.M. EDT) – Nikon Inc. is pleased to announce the release of the full-frame (Nikon FX–format) Nikon Z7 and Nikon Z6 mirrorless cameras, as well as NIKKOR Z lenses, featuring a new, larger-diameter mount to enable the next generation of ultimate optical performance.
The new Nikon Z mount system is comprised of mirrorless cameras and compatible NIKKOR Z lenses and accessories. This system has been realized through the pursuit of a new dimension in optical performance. It has inherited Nikon’s tradition of quality, superior imaging technology, intuitive operability and high reliability, all innovated from its digital SLR cameras.
At the heart of the Z mount system is the new, larger-diameter mount, which unlocks further possibilities of lens design. The Z mount system will offer a variety of high-performance lenses, including the fastest lens in Nikon history, with f/0.951. Additionally, the new mount adapter will enable compatibility with NIKKOR F mount lenses, adding to the range of choices for photographers.
The letter “Z” represents the culmination of Nikon’s relentless pursuit of ultimate optical performance, and a bridge to a new chapter. It is about redefining possibilities to provide image makers with tools to pursue greater creativity.
Nikon will expand the value of mirrorless cameras through the pursuit of a new dimension in optical performance, and by upholding Nikon’s tradition of quality while responding to the evolution of imaging technology. By providing image makers with stimulating new products, Nikon will continue to lead imaging culture.
Z7, Z6 Product Overview
The Z7 and Z6 are equipped with a new backside illumination Nikon FX-format CMOS sensor with built-in focal-plane phase-detection AF pixels, and the latest image-processing engine, EXPEED 6.
The high-resolution Z7 has 45.7 effective megapixels, and supports a standard sensitivity range of ISO 64–25600. In combination with NIKKOR Z lenses, the camera achieves an outstanding level of sharpness and detail, all the way to the edges of the image.
The versatile Z6 is an all-purpose FX-format camera with 24.5 effective megapixels, and supports the wide sensitivity range of ISO 100–51200. With superior performance at high ISO sensitivities and full-frame 4K UHD video capture with full pixel readout, the Z6 responds to a variety of needs, such as shooting in dimly lit environments and high-quality movie recording.
These two models combine legendary Nikon reliability and a familiar interface with the benefits of a mirrorless, including rapid FPS, hybrid AF, silent shooting and advanced multimedia capabilities.
Primary Features of the Z7 and Z6
- Equipped with a new backside illumination Nikon FX-format CMOS sensor with focal-plane phase-detection AF pixels
A backside illumination CMOS sensor without an Optical Low Pass Filter, with focal-plane phase-detection AF pixels, has been adopted for both the Z7 and the Z6. The Z7 has 45.7 effective megapixels, and supports ISO 64–25600 range of standard sensitivities (reduction to the equivalent of ISO 32 and expansion to the equivalent of ISO 102400 is also possible). The Z6 has an effective pixel count of 24.5 megapixels, and supports a broad range of standard sensitivities, from ISO 100–51200 (additional reduction to the equivalent of ISO 50 and expansion to the equivalent of ISO 204800).
- A fast and accurate hybrid AF system with focus points covering approximately 90% of the imaging area
The Z7 has 493 focus points2 and the Z6 has 273 focus points2, enabling broad coverage of approximately 90% of the imaging area both horizontally and vertically. This hybrid AF system uses an algorithm optimized for the FX-format sensor, to automatically switches between focal-plane phase-detection AF and contrast-detect AF when focusing to achieve focus. Newly-designed NIKKOR Z lenses take full advantage of this system, providing faster, quieter and with increased AF accuracy than previously possible for both still images and videos.
- The new EXPEED 6 image-processing engine for sharp and clear imaging, and new functions that support creativity
The Z7 and Z6 are equipped with the new EXPEED 6 image-processing engine. Employing the superior resolving power of NIKKOR Z and NIKKOR F mount lenses, subjects are rendered more sharply than ever before. Noise is also effectively reduced.
Additionally, a mid-range sharpening option has been added to Picture Control sharpness parameters. This option, along with existing sharpening and clarity parameters, allows users to make various textures within the screen sharper or softer, for both still images and video3. The cameras also offer 20 options of Creative Picture Control, supporting creative imaging expression. The effect level is adjustable from 0 to 100.
- An electronic viewfinder that utilizes Nikon's superior optical and image-processing technologies to offer a clear and natural view
The electronic viewfinder adopted for the Z7 and Z6 is comfortable and easy to use, comparable to optical viewfinders. Both cameras are equipped with an electronic viewfinder for which an approximately 3690k-dot OLED panel has been adopted. The electronic viewfinder has frame coverage and magnification of approximately 100% and 0.8×, respectively, as well as an approximately 37.0° diagonal viewing angle. It draws on Nikon's superior optical technologies and image-processing technologies, ensuring a clear and comfortable view, with reduced aberration and minimum eyestrain, even during extended shoots. Furthermore, a fluorine coat that effectively repels dirt has been applied to the eyepiece protection window. In addition, the <i> menu can be displayed in the electronic viewfinder, allowing users to quickly view and adjust a variety of shooting settings, including ISO sensitivity, AF-area mode, and Picture Control, all while looking through the viewfinder.
- An ergonomic design unique to Nikon that enables intuitive and familiar operation
The Z7 and Z6 have inherited the superior operability that Nikon has cultivated over the years through its development of cameras. The bodies are compact, while boasting a firm grip that is easy to hold, and the sub-selector and buttons such as AF-ON, ISO, and exposure compensation are all placed so that they can be operated swiftly and easily. Additionally, a display panel has been placed on the top plate of the camera, where information about settings can be displayed, similar to high-end digital SLR camera models.
- Video functions such as 10-bit N-Log that enables wide dynamic range, and timecoding that respond to professional needs
The Z7 and Z6 support recording of not only full-frame 4K UHD (3840 × 2160)/30p movies using the FX-based video format, but also Full-HD/120p movies. Sharper 4K UHD movies are made possible, using the full-pixel readout4. Additionally, Active D-Lighting, electronic vibration reduction, and focus peaking can be used with 4K UHD and Full-HD movie recording. Nikon’s original N-Log color profile can also be used with 10-bit5 HDMI output. The N-Log setting utilizes extensive color depth and twelve-stop, 1,300% dynamic range to record a wealth of tone information from highlights and shadows for more effective color grading. Timecode support makes synchronizing video and sound from multiple devices easier. Additionally, the control ring built into NIKKOR Z lenses can be used to quietly and smoothly adjust settings such as aperture and exposure compensation.
- Nikon's first6 in-camera vibration reduction with approx. 5.0-stop7 effectiveness
The Z7 and Z6 are equipped with in-camera vibration reduction (VR). The VR unit provides compensation for movement along five axes. The effects of vibration reduction are equivalent to a shutter speed up to approximately 5.0 stops6. This function can also be used effectively with NIKKOR F lenses, including those not equipped with a VR function, with the Mount Adapter FTZ (sold separately)8.
- Other features
- Same level of strength and durability, as well as dust- and drip- resistance, as the Nikon D850, offered in a compact body
- A 3.2-in., approximately 2100k-dot touch-sensitive LCD monitor, with a tilting mechanism
- Silent photography function eliminates shake and noise caused by shutter release,
- Peaking stack image function9 enables confirmation of the area in focus after shooting using focus shift, which is convenient for focus stacking10
- High-speed continuous shooting (extended)11 at approximately 9 fps (Z7) and 12 fps (Z6) captures fast motion
- Interval timer photography that makes 8K (Z7) time-lapse movie creation10 possible
- An extended low-light metering range12 allows users to easily capture scenes such as the transition from sunset to starry night sky, using aperture-priority auto exposure
- Built-in Wi-Fi® for direct connection to a smart device using SnapBridge
- Built-in Wi-Fi® makes the transfer of images and movies to a computer possible
- Support for existing digital SLR camera accessories such as the EN-EL15/a/b batteries, WT-7/A/B/C Wireless Transmitter (available separately) for transferring images and movies at high speed over a wired or wireless LAN, and radio-controlled/optical controlled Advanced Wireless Lighting, which makes flexible multi-flash photography possible
Development of the MB-N10 Multi-Power Battery Pack
The MB-N10 Multi-Power Battery Pack that is currently in development will hold two EN-EL15b, effectively increasing the number of shots possible and/or movie recording time by approximately 1.8×. It will provide the same level of dust and drip resistance as the Z7 and Z6, and will support USB charging using the EH-7P Charging AC Adapter. Information regarding the release of this product will be announced at a later date.
Price and Availability
The Nikon Z7 will be available September 27 for a suggested retail price (SRP) of $3399.95* for the body-only configuration, or for $3999.95* SRP as a kit with the new NIKKOR Z 24-70 f/4 S lens. The Nikon Z6 will be available in late November for the $1995.95* SRP for the body only configuration, or for the $2,599.95* SRP with the NIKKOR Z 24-70mm f/4 S lens kit. For more information on these and other Nikon products, please visit www.nikonusa.com.
- Within interchangeable lenses for Nikon SLR cameras and Advanced Cameras with Interchangeable Lens.
- With FX (36×24) image area and single-point AF enabled.
- Mid-range sharpness adjustment is only possible at “High quality” movie setting.
- DX-based movie format with the Z7.
- Simultaneous recording of 4K UHD movies with 10-bit output to the camera's memory card is not possible.
- Among interchangeable-lens cameras.
- Measured in accordance with CIPA standards (using the NIKKOR Z 24-70mm f/4 S, with zoom set at the maximum telephoto position)
- The level of compensation achieved when a NIKKOR F mount lens is used is not as high as that of a NIKKOR Z lens
- Can only be confirmed using the camera with which focus shift was performed.
- Third-party software is required.
- Continuous H (extended) in 12-bit RAW, JPEG, or TIFF format.
- With interval timer shooting or time-lapse movie recording with silent photography and exposure smoothing enabled.
Nikon Z7 specifications
|MSRP||$3399 (body only), $3999 (w/24-70 F4 lens)|
|Body type||SLR-style mirrorless|
|Body material||Magnesium alloy|
|Max resolution||8256 x 5504|
|Other resolutions||5408 x 3600 (DX crop), 6880 x 5504 (5:4), 5504 x 5504 (1:1), 8256 x 4640 (16:9)|
|Image ratio w:h||1:1, 5:4, 3:2, 16:9|
|Effective pixels||46 megapixels|
|Sensor photo detectors||47 megapixels|
|Sensor size||Full frame (35.9 x 23.9 mm)|
|Color space||sRGB, Adobe RGB|
|Color filter array||Primary color filter|
|ISO||Auto, 64-25600 (expands to 32-102400)|
|Boosted ISO (minimum)||32|
|Boosted ISO (maximum)||102400|
|White balance presets||12|
|Custom white balance||Yes (6 slots)|
|Image stabilization notes||5-axis|
|CIPA image stabilization rating||5 stop(s)|
|JPEG quality levels||Fine, normal, basic|
|Optics & Focus|
|Autofocus assist lamp||Yes|
|Number of focus points||493|
|Lens mount||Nikon Z|
|Focal length multiplier||1×|
|Screen / viewfinder|
|Screen type||TFT LCD|
|Minimum shutter speed||30 sec|
|Maximum shutter speed||1/8000 sec|
|External flash||Yes (via hot shoe)|
|Flash modes||Front-curtain sync, slow sync, rear-curtain sync, red-eye reduction, red-eye reduction with slow sync, slow rear-curtain sync, off|
|Flash X sync speed||1/200 sec|
|Continuous drive||9.0 fps|
|Self-timer||Yes (2, 5, 10 or 20 secs)|
|Exposure compensation||±5 (at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps)|
|Storage types||XQD card|
|USB||USB 3.2 Gen 1 (5 GBit/sec)|
|HDMI||Yes (mini HDMI)|
|Wireless notes||802.11ac + Bluetooth|
|Remote control||Yes (via MC-DC2 or smartphone)|
|Battery description||EN-EL15b lithium-ion battery & charger|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||330|
|Weight (inc. batteries)||675 g (1.49 lb / 23.81 oz)|
|Dimensions||134 x 101 x 68 mm (5.28 x 3.98 x 2.68″)|
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