Nikon Introduces Mirrorless Z System

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by ShunCheung, Aug 23, 2018.

  1. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    To me, the main advantage of DX is the greater reach with super teles. E.g. I used the D500 with 500mm, 600mm a lot. That option may be an issue if one uses a mix of Canon R and M mirrorless.

    Canon's switch from FD to EOS/EF way back in 1987 is now distant memory, and Canon benefited a lot of that mount change. I could have never imagined that Canon would now end up with two different mounts for DX and FX mirrorless. There is no reason that Canon didn't take FX into consideration when they introduced the EOS-M a few years ago.
  2. If they had made the EOS M mount larger, benefits in the form of smaller diameter lenses would not have been realized.

    I don't think the M are that kind of APS-C you'd use for super telephoto applications; a larger body would be more suitable. Canon may eventually make such a camera for the R mount.
  3. I generally don't buy the "crop for more reach" argument. The D800 matched the D7000's pixel density; the D850 matches the D500; Canon's 5DS matches their APS-C bodies. Reach with a smaller (and cheaper) body, maybe.

    If anything, on switching to Nikon, I was surprised that DX lenses WERE compatible with FX bodies. The EF-S mount is only an EF mount with a bit of extra clearance because of the smaller mirror. In theory it made it easier for Canon to make small and cheap APS-C lenses, though I'm not sure how much difference it ever made. Nikon had more to gain because their flange distance is longer, but to be fair there are more mechanical parts in the way in the F mount.

    Mirrorless does have several advantages (and the EVF/OVF question does have benefits on both sides) - I only said one of them was size. Nonetheless, the camera itself is a lot smaller without a mirror box, it's saving the substantial weight of a prism, and at least wider lenses can be made shorter.

    Which reminds me: do I remember Nikon saying something about Leica-style offset sensor mechanics to work with highly non-telecentric lenses? I'm confused how a Z mount can be designed both for a very close rear nodal point and for traditional lenses.
  4. I see one of the 3 Canon adapters has a drop in filter slot!
    I'm sure I remember someone saying optically that was a nightmare?
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2018
  5. Yup. It'll keep Thom Hogan happy, since he kept mentioning it. Others have questioned whether putting a filter in the rear optical path of a lens might have a negative effect on the optics (if it's not designed for it like the big telephotos that come with optical flats), but it's nice to have, as is the bonus control ring version. I assume if Nikon don't produce alternatives (possibly including an AF motor) third parties will, but the mechanical aperture lever arrangement might be in the way for doing it trivially. That said, the big tripod foot on the announced version almost feels like an AF motor could have fit.

    I see someone in Canon let Hypnoken play with the Eos R for a week; so far he's very "it's perfect, Nikon can't do anything right", but he's been playing that tune for a couple of years now; I almost wonder if he got burnt by something beyond actual preferences, but that's another discussion. I was discouraged from continuing to read by... the usual reasons... so there may be more he reports. :) He does make a point about Nikon having very relatively manufacturing ability (although as someone who just walked into a store to buy a D850 and could have done so several months earlier in the UK, some of it seems regional), so - especially given Nikon's pre-emptive apology on the subject - we'll see how long it takes the Z7 and Z6 to roll out. And also how the naming convention is going to work for other models...
  6. Among the Canon R adapters I wouldn't care for the one with filter slot as I don't use filters. I do like the one with the control ring.
    Nikon makes the Z's in a different factory than the one producing the D850 so I don't think they would have the same problem. I think they make the Z7 first before starting production on the Z6. They are halting production for the D5 and Df for the moment to make them Z's.
    I missed the launch event last night so I could see how well the EVF is. To me the Z's are fine if they have good EVF.
  7. To be fair, mostly neither do I. I'm not sure whether it'd support a polariser (the rear drop-in one for the big telephotos has a little wheel so you can rotate it). I guess an ND filter would be more useful for a camera giving higher priority to video.

    I always like more control points. Putting it at the mount means it won't always be in an accessible place for big lenses (without a tripod), so I prefer the location being lens-specific, but "sometimes better" is still "better".

    Make bet? Unless this was purely a PR stunt to persuade people that the system is going to be popular, but if so the ongoing D850 supply issue in the US meant that it backfired - online commenters are being critical of Nikon's ability to ship. There were rumours of yield issues with the D850 sensor; I don't know whether that carries over to the Z7. I can't assume all that many D5s and Dfs are actually being manufactured at this point in their lifetimes, though every little helps.

    They lost me at the frame rate (with viewfinder), buffer and potentially battery. Plus I'd still like an SD slot (Canon's one-slot solution is better for me unless it's bandwidth constrained - XQD-only on consumer cameras is brave). But time and later models may change my position - it's the launch models rather than the system that don't appeal. I'd absolutely look at a Z6 if I didn't already have a backup body.
  8. Z7's EVF...
    Some informations concerning Z 7's EVF ,from "Nikon Z7 field report by Marsek van Oosten , it really makes me wonder if Nikon understand how should a mirrorless EFV function :
    M.O. said :"Several times I found myself being fooled by the brightness of the EVF, tricking me into thinking that I shot a nice and bright image with tons of shadow detail, whereas in reality the image was actually horribly underexposed. While it is true that one look at the histogram would tell me this, in the heat of the moment that sometimes did not compute. An overly dark scene like the one above will easily look well exposed in the EVF, but later turn out to be way too dark. There have been moments where I was looking at the image in the viewfinder and then to the histogram next to it, and realized those did not seem to belong together - the image looked so much brighter than what it should look like according to the histogram. At first, I started to change the brightness level of the EVF to match what I was seeing, but that didn't prove to be a definitive solution either. I ended up more or less ignoring the brightness level of the image in the EVF and only use it for composition, light direction, focus, depth of field, and instead relying on the histogram for exposure. Overall, I would say the default setting of the EVF is too bright"

    ??? what ???, I don't understand . On my Fuji XT2 what I see (through EVF)
    is what I get (no difference between EVF and final picture) and I didn't expect otherwise. What do you think ?

  9. You get the same with the LV back screen on most of the current DSLRs.
    Either WYSIWYG or a brightened version so you can see enough to compose, especially when using a flash in dim conditions.
    You toggle with the OK button between the 2.
    I guess the Z7 EVF has a similar option.??
  10. It appears the Canon filter adapter has a little wheel too.
    Ideal for those UWA that can't use front mounted ones.
    I'm curious as to whether the odd effect of polarizers on very wide skies is the same when the filter is behind all the optics rather than in front?
    The light angles will be very different.
    Andrew Garrard likes this.
  11. Andrew! Besides from being mirrorless I think I would have battery problem with the Z. I don't think I would get the 350 shots CIPA rating because I tend to turn the camera on looking thru the viewfinder and not taking a shot. I actually do not take more than 500 shots before I can recharge. 500 is the top limit. I generally top out at 100 to 200 per shooting day. But even at 100 to 200 I don't think the battery would last that long for me.
    Frame rate of the viewfinder doesn't bother me much. My primary criteria for the EVF is this. Can I focus manually with it and not using magnified view or focus peaking? If I can it passes my requirement.
  12. ...sorry , I did not provide the link to original Marsek van Oosten post :
    Nikon Z7 Field Report - Squiver
    ...BTW, is a great review/field report on the Z7 !
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2018
  13. The gradient is due to the polarization dependency of the scattering phase function and it happens in the atmosphere, not in the lens.

    The effect should be similar irrespective of the position of the polarizer.

    I suppose if the frontal polarizer is thick it could also shift the light a bit which could affect the image quality at edges of the frame. In this respect a polarizer in the adapter could be better (smaller, too).
    mike_halliwell likes this.
  14. Ah. OK. I was wondering whether it was the angle of incident light to the filter which in an UW could be very obtuse whereas at a rear filter it would be almost telecentric/perpendicular.
  15. Reports are that practical battery life on the Z7 is better than the rest figures would indicate, but I'd want to know more before determining how much. It's bound to use more power than an optical finder, obviously.

    My understanding was that the EVF can run either in "preview of the JPEG" mode or "pretend to be an optical finder" mode. I'm guessing the reviewer might have had it in the latter and not understood that the subsequent brightness wouldn't be representative. (Since I tune exposure retrospectively anyway, I'd likely be in this mode far more than not.)
  16. An EVF has the issue that the brightness is not automatically perceived as the brightness of the final image in the viewing conditions where you would look at it. The human eye and brain tend to adjust what they are seeing especially if the brightest lit part of the visual field is a part of the image being viewed. In a reasonably lit environment (such as a room), when looking at a print, this adaptation happens to the environment, not the print, so the print may be seen differently than an image on a monitor. What is worse, the EVF is used in a wide variety of lighting conditions. I think likely Nikon will sort it out and figure out an algorithm which should help use the EVF in the broad range of conditions that a viewfinder is used, though I guess it will never be the same as an OVF in this respect. The EVF likely doesn't show shadow detail in contrasty conditions the same way the human eye sees it, and in the brightest of light it may have difficulty with eyes adapted to the sun. In dark ambient conditions, the EVF may cause the problem that because the image is relatively bright, the eye will adapt to the EVF and after taking the camera off the eye, there may be a period where the eye takes a while before being able to see in the dark again. I quite like the optical viewfinder myself, but recognize that both types of devices have their uses.

    Even if in some conditions Nikon's Z EVF implementation may seem too bright, I am sure they can improve the algorithm adjusting the brightness of the EVF based on surrounding illumination and getting feedback from users. Firmware updates are a given, I think, because these are the first products of a lineup that Nikon have to get right.
  17. I see both the Nikon and Canon mirrorless are using the white-on-black top LCD displays.

    Anyone think that DSLRs will go the same way (or have they already and I missed it!?)

    There was a time when you could choose your own colour scheme for the back panel when in infoscreen mode.

    I know astro shooters hate big glowing back panels, dark adaption is easily ruined, guess an EVF is going to do the same.... unless you can make it all red!
  18. The Nikon one, at least, isn't an LCD, it's an OLED. Apart from any other concern, with an emissive display, white on black uses less power. I'm less convinced about light on dark LCDs - I've a feeling either the way the light bounces or the way the eye adapts doesn't work as well as dark on light; I have an "easy to see" light on dark LCD alarm clock and it's almost illegible in dim light.

    I thought I read about something with a red "night mode" option for the rear LCD recently. I don't recall which camera though.
  19. I wondered if that was the D810A?

    White-on-black with a backlight! How energy efficient is that?
  20. was about the new Fuji XT3...
    And another bad news (sort of) came from Joe McNally Photography :"The Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 and 70-200 f/2.8 can't AF at all" (with Z7). I wonder about Sigma...
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2018

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