Best Nikon camera – Nikon Z7 review

nikon z7

The Z7 Mirrorless Digital Camera is Nikon’s most well-rounded camera till now. Not only it features a plethora of functions, but it is also well-suited for both video and stills. The quality and handling both are impressive with a build that is reliable and durable. Its design offers, a smaller plus lighter body that is compatible with the all-new Nikon Z-mount.

It is Nikon’s first mirrorless 4K-capable machine which employs a variant of the 46MP BSI CMOS sensor along with mechanical stabilization and on-sensor phase-detection AF pixels.

With 45.7MP full-frame BSI-CMOS sensor and in-body 5-axis image stabilization, this camera performs like a champion. It also provides exceptional viewing with 90% horizontal and vertical coverage of the frame, 3.69M-dot OLED viewfinder, 2.1M-dot tilting touch LCD, and OLED top plate display.

The performance is also on point with ISO range of 64-25,6b00, Up to 9 fps shooting, UHD 4K capture up to 30p and 10-bit 4:2:2 N-Log output over HDMI. There are many other supplementary features as well which include Up to 100Mbps H.264 8-bit internal video capture, Wi-Fi system, Bluetooth, and many more. The only area where we think that the Z7 lacks is autofocus reliability.

So let us look in details the features of Nikon Z7 to understand what makes it so special:

Product overview:

As you might expect, this Z7 – like all other Nikon creation – has an ideal design and built. Nikon has done a lot to ensure that its feel and handling are the same as high-end cameras. So the Key Takeaway for this camera is its build which is small yet comfortable. The construction is also quite sturdy and reliable. It also has weather-sealing and feels durable. The design is also impeccable as the manufacturers have put a lot of thought into it.

nikon z7 screen

The dial and button behavior are highly consistent with previous DSLR models and all the buttons are placed perfectly for ease of use. It also provides a fairly deep grip and feels solid and secure in hands. Not only that, but it also looks classy in hands

Now coming on to the viewfinder, Nikon Z7 features a viewfinder that remains highly detailed in all modes. Nikon has ensured that its viewing quality remains above its competitors. That is why the company has worked on it to give its users viewfinder panel which is a 3.69M-dot display and gives 1280 x 960-pixel resolution and is the same as highest-end models of Panasonic and Fuji film.

Then the Z7 also offers several rear screen modes, including the ability to just use the finder and not the rear screen. There is also an option to select from the different menus which are offered in these modes. Users can cycle through their selected options by making use of a button placed on the side of the finder.

Next is the operation of Z7, which like all Nikon cameras is on point. Like always the manufacturers have been successful in keeping the operation as smooth as possible. They have ensured that the workings of this camera are familiar to its existing DSLRs so that the users feel comfortable. Both the menus and the interface of this Z7 are similar to Nikon’s previous models. Only the AF system is unfamiliar and not as efficient as others.

The touchscreen is also appropriate for extensive use. The only lacking is that there is no AF touch pad option and a dedicated AF mode button. The menu is even customizable and touch-sensitive and the buttons are also highly customizable with separate options for videos and images. The touchscreen can be used for many things including setting the AF point, navigating and zooming images, interacting with menus, etc. The only omission is that it can’t be used when the camera is held to the eye.

Another key takeaway for Nikon Z7 is its versatility as this camera is a well-rounded camera making it suitable for both professional photography and casual shooting. Based on our testing, it can be used for a lot of purposes including traveling, action photography, capturing Portraits, landscape photography, covering family moments like weddings, and many more. This is because it’s small size, excellent video and image quality and full-frame makes it a very appealing option for all sorts of photographers.

nikon z7 top view

Moreover, its in-body stabilization for hand-held video, ready-to-share JPEGs, Bluetooth-supported Wi-Fi, and USB charging makes it ideal for travel photographers. It is also perfect for those users who are keen on having a durable camera as this camera is rather well-built with weather-sealing and rough and tough construction. The only lacking here is its short battery life and single card slot which can be quite inconvenient at times.

Next on our list are Z7’s impressive video features. It employs an in-body stabilization which results in high-quality movie making with painless hand-holding. Moreover, it has APS-C crop/Super 35 mode which delivers excellent over sampled 4K video.

It also has Nikon’s Flat Picture profile and 10-bit Log footage for advance users. Additionally, video autofocus is also very reliable and useful in many situations. Other supplementary features are also there which enhance video making such as Focus peaking, Zebra warnings, and separate exposure settings for stills and videos. There are headphone and mic sockets for audio as well. The only con is that it doesn’t have a flip-around screen for vlogging.

Coming on the AF-C performance, we used a single point to test the camera’s continuous AF ability to drive the lens to the right location and the Z7 can easily maintain focus on a subject when using a single point with a nearly 100% hit rate. Nikon Z7 has vast AF coverage, is precise in its focus on static subjects and accurate in its focus on moving subjects (using a single point), but its AF tracking of moving subjects is not as reliable as the 3D-Tracking mode found in Nikon DSLRs.

What’s in the box?

  • 1 × Nikon Z 7 Mirrorless Digital Camera
  • 1 × Nikon MH-25A Battery Charger for EN-EL15 Li-Ion Battery
  • 1 × Nikon EN-EL15b Rechargeable Lithium-Ion Battery
  • 1 × Nikon EH-7P Charging AC Adapter
  • 1 × Nikon UC-E24 USB Cable
  • 1 × Nikon BS-1 Hot Shoe Cover for Nikon SLR Cameras
  • 1 × HDMI/USB Cable Clip
  • 1 × Nikon AN-DC19 Camera Strap
  • 1 × Nikon DK-29 Rubber Eyecup
  • 1 × Nikon BF-N1 Body Cap
  • 1 × Limited 1-Year Warranty

Product specification:

Lens Mount: Nikon Z

Camera Format: Full-Frame (1x Crop Factor)

Max Resolution: 8256 x 5504

Actual Pixels: 46.89 Megapixel

Effective Pixels: 45.7 Megapixel

Aspect Ratio: 1:1, 3:2, 4:5, 16:9

Sensor Type: CMOS

Sensor Size: 35.9 x 23.9 mm

Bit Depth: 14-Bit

Image File Format: JPEG, RAW

Image Stabilization: Sensor-Shift, 5-Axis

ISO Sensitivity Auto: 64 to 25600

Electronic Front Curtain Shutter: 1/8000 to 30 Seconds

Extended: 32 to 102400

Metering Method: Center-Weighted Average, Highlight Weighted, Matrix, Spot

Exposure Modes: Aperture Priority, Auto, Manual, Program, Shutter Priority

Exposure Compensation: -5 to +5 EV (1/3, 1/2 EV Steps)

White Balance: Auto, Cloudy, Color Temperature, Flash, Direct Sunlight, Fluorescent, Incandescent, Preset Manual, Shade



Metering Range: -3 to 17 EV

Continuous Shooting: Up to 9 fps at 45.7 MP

Interval Recording: Yes

Recording Modes: MOV/MP4/H.264, UHD 4K (3840 x 2160) at 23.976p/25p/29.97p, Full HD (1920 x 1080) at 23.976p/25p/29.97p/50p/59.94p/100p/119.88p

Self-Timer: 2/5/10/20-Second Delay

External Recording Modes: 10-Bit, UHD 4K (3840 x 2160), Full HD (1920 x 1080)

Recording Limit: 29 Minutes, 59 Seconds

Video Encoding: NTSC/PAL

Audio File Format: AAC, Linear PCM (Stereo)

Audio Recording: Built-In Microphone (Stereo), External Microphone Input

Focus Type: Auto and Manual Focus

Phase Detection: 493

Focus Mode: Continuous-Servo AF (C), Full-time Servo (F), Manual Focus (M), Single-Servo AF (S)

Viewfinder Type: Electronic

Viewfinder Size: 0.5″

Viewfinder Resolution: 3,690,000 Dot

Viewfinder Eye Point: 21 mm

Viewfinder Magnification: Approx. 0.8x

Viewfinder Coverage: 100%

Diopter Adjustment: -4 to +2

Monitor Resolution: 2,100,000 Dot

Monitor Size: 3.2″

Monitor Type: Tilting Touchscreen LCD

Flash Modes: First-Curtain Sync, Off, Rear Curtain/Slow Sync, Rear Sync, Red-Eye Reduction, Slow Sync, Slow Sync/Red-Eye Reduction



Built-In Flash: No

Maximum Sync Speed: 1/200 Second

Flash Compensation: -3 to +1 EV (1/3, 1/2 EV Steps)

External Flash Connection: Hot Shoe

Dedicated Flash System: iTTL

Internal Memory: None

Memory Card: Single Slot XQD

Connectivity: 3.5mm Headphone, 3.5mm Microphone, HDMI C (Mini), Nikon DC2, USB Type-C (USB 3.0)

GPS: No

Wi-Fi: yes

Bluetooth: yes

Operating Temperature: 32 to 104°F / 0 to 40°C

Operating Humidity: 0 to 85%

Dimensions: 134 x 100.5 x 67.5 mm / 5.3 x 4 x 2.7″

Battery: 1 x EN-EL15b Rechargeable Lithium-Ion

Weight (Body Only): 585 g / 1.29 lb.

Pros

  • It employs a 45.7MP BSI-CMOS sensor
  • It has excellent resolution and image quality
  • It features In-body stabilization
  • It has highly-detailed EVF
  • It offers a usable silent shutter mode
  • It features Touchscreen and joysticks for AF point placement
  • It also has a Flip-out screen for high and low shots
  • It has Top-plate info display
  • It offers full-frame 4K
  • It features 10-bit Log 4K footage over HDMI
  • It is small and lightweight yet sturdy
  • It has weather-sealing which makes it durable
  • It has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth which makes sharing easy

Cons

  • Dedicated AF mode button is absent
  • Auto Focus is not very reliable
  • When using the EVF, the touchscreen cannot be used for touch pad AF
  • No flip-around screen for vlogging
  • Battery life is short
  • Single card slot

Conclusion

Summing it up, this camera is perfect in all aspects. Be it handling, ease of use, or ergonomics, it never ceases to surprise us. So, all in all, we are very impressed with the Z7 because it is the best-rounded stills and video camera ever launched by Nikon.

Even though it does have some lacking, but they are minute so we give it a straight five on five for its features, build, and performance. Thus, Nikon has indeed been successful in creating a classic mirrorless camera that is both great and superbly made. Add it to your gear and let it weave magic for you!

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Author: condruzmf

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