We Nikon shooters have been waiting a long time for a full framed mirrorless option. So long that I actually bought a Sony A7III last May with a 35mm 1.4 and the Sony 85mm 1.8. The Sony system was great and I love the advantages that a mirrorless system could deliver but something about the Sony system didn’t click and rarely did I ever take my A7III to a professional shoot. It’s not that it isn’t a capable camera but rather because my brain is wired for a Nikon DSLR and the Sony felt more like a computer rather than an extension of my eye and hand like my D750 did. The eye AF was nice and I love the focus peeking option to help nail focus at f1.4. It was a love-hate relationship. I loved the rapid fire burst shooting, endless button customization, great focusing system and image quality but something about the whole package wasn’t quite right and I realized what that was when I picked up the new Nikon Z6. A camera is all about feel and the Sony A7III just didn’t feel right in my hand, even after a year of casual use. The complexity of the menu system and functions lead to lots of “This operation or setting not available as follows” in my EVF and my hands didn’t quite grip the camera in a comfortable way.
The Z6 isn’t a perfect camera but it is pretty damn close and after having it for just a week, I felt confident enough in the system to use it on a paid shoot. The FTZ adapter is fabulous and it really works exceptionally well. Every F mount lens works as it should on my Z6 and for me this is huge as I have over 10K invested in Nikon (and Sigma) glass. I absolutely love the fact that Nikon included the U1-U3 settings just like my D750 had. This makes shooting so efficient when photographing in very dynamic situations as you can completely change how the camera works with a quick turn of the dial. The Nikon Z6 is slightly larger than the A7III and fits my hand just like my D750 did. The grip, button placement and general ergonomics are well thought out making the Nikon Z6 a pleasure to use.
Nikon has something great here with the Z mount. This camera mount was built from the ground up with the idea of taking lens technology to the next level. This seems to be working as edge to edge sharpness on the new Z lenses is impressive as well as the distortion control. Look how huge the Z mount is compared to Sony’s E mount in the picture below. There is so much room around that camera sensor while the Sony E mount sensor looks a bit cramped. I do believe that the Sony E mount was created for smaller APC sized sensors and then adapted to full frame later. Nikon has some refinements to make in the future. I heard that eye AF in just around the corner in a firmware update and I would love to have AF-C be a bit more accurate and responsive. The single card slot isn’t a deal breaker for me and yes I am a wedding photographer (who can also remember shooting weddings with D700’s, each with one CF card). Do we really need redundant card slots with these new XQD super cards? Anyway, thanks for reading! Here is my new Z6 with it’s 24-70 mounted on it. Love!