Nikon Z50

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20MP APS-C sensor | Hybrid autofocus system | Full-width 4K capture

What we like:

  • Excellent image quality
  • Comfortable and customizable body
  • Good video quality
  • USB charging

What we don't:

  • No in-body image stabilization
  • Autofocus features are sluggish and poorly integrated
  • Battery life isn't great
  • Limited lens selection
The Nikon Z50 is a 20MP mid-range mirrorless camera with an APS-C sensor behind the company's Z lens mount.
The Z50 has a good-sized grip and two well-positioned command dials, making it a comfortable camera to take control over. It has a magnesium alloy body that makes it comparable to Nikon's higher-end APS-C DSLRs. Its menus are extensive but well organized. The camera offers a 3.2" tilting touchscreen and a respectable electronic viewfinder.
The Z50 is a well-designed, enjoyable camera to shoot with
The Z50's autofocus system is borrowed from Nikon's first generation full-frame mirrorless cameras, meaning it has impressive Eye AF and pretty consistent AF tracking, but accessing them both is a little slower and less flexible than it could be. The camera is reasonably quick at its fastest burst rate but slows down if you need live view. Battery life is good, but not great.
The Z50 offers good noise performance and dynamic range but without a clear benefit in return for its slightly lower pixel count. Nikon's JPEG engine is pretty refined, so we're expecting decent color but perhaps not the most detailed sharpening.
The Z50's 4K capture isn't the most detailed we've seen but uses the full width of the sensor and exhibits very little rolling shutter. The autofocus does well in video, though, and the ability to choose different settings for video mode makes the Z50 pretty easy to capture both stills and video with.
We think the Z50 is a well-designed, enjoyable camera to shoot with. There's something of a question mark is over which lenses you'd mount, if you wanted to get the most out of it, but the camera itself is comfortable, engaging and capable.

Richard Butler

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