Last Updated on April 2, 2022 by seanmichaelpritchard
Choosing the best Nikon Z mirrorless cameras of the year is a difficult task.
Whatever stage of your photographic career you’re at, here are the best Nikon Corporation Z mirrorless system digital cameras for you, and there’s one for every price!
Whether you’re looking for a full-frame sensor for the best image quality, an APS-C sensor for fantastic value, or even just a compact for maximum portability, this is the guide for you.
At a glance:
Nikon Corporation Z cameras also supply access to an excellent selection of Nikon Z lenses suitable for virtually any type of photography.
Therefore, let us take a look at the best Nikon Z mirrorless cameras for you!
Nikon’s Z5 full-frame mirrorless camera is an entry-level model that appears and performs almost identically to its high-powered Z series siblings, the Z7 and Z6. Its design is based on the non-BSI 24MP CMOS sensor but, unlike earlier Nikons, stabilized.
The Z5 is slightly more trimmed down and geared toward stills photography than the Z6, but it shares the same EXPEED 6 processing engine and 273-point hybrid AF system. Similarly, the Z5’s video capabilities and largest burst rate are significantly lower than those of the Z6: highly cropped 4K vs. uncropped, oversampled 4K, and 4.5 frames per second vs. 12 frames per second. However, the two cameras are pretty similar in terms of image quality and handling.
The Nikon Z5 boasts a 24MP CMOS full-frame sensor (not BSI), a hybrid autofocus system with 273 phase-detect points that cover about 90% of the frame, and a 5-axis picture stabilization within the camera body. It also has an OLED viewfinder with a resolution of 3.69 million dots, dual SD cards UHS-II (so many photographers would be grateful for this), and 4K/30p video recording (with 1.7x crop). It has the capacity to capture video at a resolution of 1080/60p and has ports for a microphone and headphones.
The Z5’s autofocus ability is quite strong, regardless of whether you’re photographing moving or static scenes. However, the camera’s video performance is lacking.
The Nikon Corporation Z5 is undoubtedly the best value for money stills camera on the market, so it earns a place on this list.
- Dust and moisture are kept out.
- Continuous shooting at 4.5 frames per second with AF.
- Poor video performance.
Z fc from Nikon is a transposable-lens mirrorless system digital camera equipped with a 20.9-megapixel Nikon dx format APS-C sensor. It is fashioned with silver highlights and a retro-inspired body to evoke vintage Nikon Corporation SLR cameras. It features dedicated shutter speed, ISO controls, and a completely articulated touchscreen, making simple adjustments.
It’s rather light, and the aluminum dials and magnesium alloy frame give it a quality, solid feel. However, not everyone will find its throwback form comfortable to use, as it is devoid of a handgrip and features a sharply squared-off body.
It delivers superb overall image quality and performs well in low light. Its autofocus technology is excellent for tracking moving subjects in photography or video, and it features a fast continuous shooting speed of 11 frames per second. Battery life is adequate depending on settings and usage habits, and it supports USB charging, albeit it does not have a USB cable in its box.
The Nikon Z fc is a capable travel camera. It is lightweight and portable, yet it lacks a handgrip and may not be the best choice to use for extended periods. It features an excellent autofocus system and a rapid continuous shooting speed, making it ideal for capturing fleeting moments.
Additionally, it produces good overall image quality and excels at image stabilization when used with the kit lens. Its screen is bright enough to cut glare caused by the sun. However, its advertised photo battery life is average, while performance may vary depending on the environment.
- Excellent autofocus.
- Superior image quality.
- Works with all Nikon Z-Mount Lenses, both full-frame and Nikon DX format.
- Also made the list of “Best Compact Cameras for Travel.“
- There is no handgrip.
- Substandard battery life.
Although the Nikon Z6 and Z7 were the company’s first full-frame mirrorless cameras, and some would argue its first serious mirrorless system digital cameras, they avoided the ‘first generation’ feel. Both cameras are excellent.
However, there is one aspect that many photographers believe is a mistake for a high-end digital camera: each has only one card slot. Happily, Nikon Z7II has two memory card slots that can accept XQD cards and SD-type UHS-II.
By adding one slot, the Nikon Corporation Z7II corrects that niggling bother that photographers have about the Z7.
Adding a second EXPEED 6 engine also takes 4K shooting to 60P, boosts the continuous shooting rate, enhances the low-light capability of the autofocus system, and deepens the burst depth and for former Z7 users, it surely feels like an upgrade.
Looking inwards, the full-frame 45.7MP (BSI) sensor in the Z7 II was previously in the Z7. Flanking the Z7II’s sensor are two (not one, two!) EXPEED 6 engines
The Nikon Z7 II boasts a high dynamic range – this means it can display a lot of tones in a single image. This is definitely good news for photos coming straight from the camera which also broadens options for post-capture tweaking. This is also excellent news if you need to reduce the exposure to maintain the brightest highlights; you may do so knowing that the shadows and mid-tones can be boosted in post-production.
- High-quality sensor.
- Excellent user interface and control layout.
- Weatherproof build.
- Also made the list of “Best Full Frame Mirrorless Cameras.“
- Tilting screen seems dysfunctional.
- The viewfinder resolution is outdated.
As the 24.5Mp camera of second-generation, the Nikon Z6 II is a jack-of-all-trades machine that’s more affordable than the Z7 II. Mainly for photographic enthusiasts, it’s also not a bad choice for professional portrait and wedding photographers, who prefer smaller file size outputs than other Nikon cameras deliver.
In the Z6 II Nikon mirrorless system digital camera keeps the 24.5Mp CMOS sensor (present in the Z6) and has added another EXPEED 6 engine. This added power enables the Nikon Corporation Z6 II to have a 14fps maximum continuous shooting rate, which is higher than its predecessors. Hence, metering capability and full autofocus can be kept for 200 Jpegs.
The same 273-point hybrid focusing system in previous Nikon versions that use the phase and contrast detection is present in the Nikon Z6 II. However, its functionality has been improved.
The animal and human eye AF the Z6 possesses has been enabled for the Z6 II as well as an upgrade to enable animal and human eye AF in video mode. What fantastic news for wedding, portrait, lifestyle, and wildlife photographers and videographers!
- Superior sensor.
- Outstanding graphical user interface and control layout.
- Customization of the video info menu is not possible.
- 60 frames per second in 4K results in a 1.5x crop factor.
The Z50’s Nikon dx format mirrorless design confers several significant advantages. For example, the electronic viewfinder’s 2.36 million-dot resolution may display the image as it will be recorded, complete with any exposure, white balance, and picture control settings that have been applied.
Additionally, you can smoothly transition from shooting through the viewfinder to shooting through the 3.2-inch screen.
Additionally, the 209-point autofocus system, which employs phase detection, performs admirably in low light. With it, you’ll have no trouble shooting sports or action on the Nikon Z50.
However, if you’re new to video or considering it, you can also record 4K video at up to 30 frames per second and connect an external microphone via the mic connector. Additionally, you can shoot Full HD film at up to 120 frames per second, which means you can really slow down action to create drama.
SnapBridge technology from Nikon Corporation is also integrated, and it performs an excellent job of sending low-resolution copies of your photographs to a linked phone. That is incredibly beneficial.
- Accurate and rapid AF in low light.
- Outstanding construction and handling.
- Works with all Nikon Z-Mount Lenses, both full-frame and Nikon DX format.
- No joystick for picking AF points
With all these mirrorless system digital cameras, Nikon stands to keep its giant status in the world of mirrorless cameras.
Of course, we are averse to some features, but we love them for their upgrades and think there will be solid improvements in the future!
If you’re an avid Nikon fan check out their magazine here!
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