Z50 to replace D500? Is it a good idea?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by Mary Doo, Aug 29, 2020.

  1. I am thinking of replacing the D500 with Z50. Questions:.
    1. Is Z50 equivalent to D500 in focusing and tracking? (Thinking wildlife here.)

    2. I can use the FTZ converter on the Z50 for non-Z lenses: However...
    • How many Z/S lenses are there now for the cropped Z50 sensor?
    • Are there any undesirable effect if one uses full-frame lenses on the Z50? - Is the effect similar or different from using them on D500?
    • How is the Z7 DX-cropped image different from the Z50 image?
    Due to a recent fire in my house, all my cameras are destroyed and many lenses were destroyed or had smoke damage. I will be replacing a substantial number of camera equipment, or settling for actual cash value on older ones. So I am taking this opportunity to decide what to keep or discard.

    Thanks in advance. I don't have much time for detailed research on my own at this time as I deal with the insurance claim.
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2020
  2. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Mary, the Z5 is an FX body. The Z50 is DX. I seriously doubt that the Z5 can match the D500’s AF speed.
    mike_hilliard likes this.
  3. Oh I meand Z50, LOL Nice if you can change the title for me too. Thanks Shun.
  4. Condolences to all that wonderful gear...:eek:

    Time for a complete re-build...:cool:

    I have no real input here, but i'll be glued to the replies...:)

    I'm hoping the upcoming Z6S will make the Z6 price drop...:D
    Mary Doo likes this.
  5. What Mike said :eek:

    DX only two - variable aperture 16-50 and 50-250. Of course all the FX ones fit too.

    Without having tried the Z50, I can't tell but I strongly doubt it. Entry-level DX mirrorless vs flagship DX DSLR. Looks like the card is SD UHS-I - so the performance will be nowhere near that of the XQD card in the D500. Not sure what the actual limitations for the 11fps are - 12-bit RAW I could live with.

    If my D500 were to give out, there are currently only two options for me: another D500 or a D850 (with the caveat that I would need the battery grip, larger battery and its charger). Jumping ship to Sony is always an option for anything but wildlife photography as giving up the 500PF is not an option at all.
    NetR and Mary Doo like this.
  6. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Thread title updated from Z5 to Z50.
    Mary Doo likes this.
  7. the "Z"lens lineup is still a bit limited, wheras the lenses usable on the D500 spans almost the entire SLR and DSLR nikon universe starting with the AI-series.

    I would not want to be dependend on ths FTZ adapter, for fast , macro or lon lenses, but that is just me..
  8. Hey, where do I get these Ion lenses?..

  9. Think the Z50 is out for now. Thinking Z7, and can also use its DX crops when needed. But D500 and D850 have better focusing and tracking mechanism. Hmm...
    Thanks Shun!
  10. Very sorry to hear about the fire, it must be a tough time for you. The D500 is almost unmatched for sports or wildlife photography. My D4 is no slouch but if it failed a D500 would be a serious contender. My Z50 is a great carry camera, a nice size, but the key, as so often, is the lens. Avoid the Z dx lenses, I have the Z 14-30 which is a useful lens on a crop but the star is the Z 50 1.8. This gives me the best results of any Nikon lens I have ever owned and I still have a few highly rated F lenses. Using FX glass will enable me to make a move to the Z9 less problematic. It is quite funny to hear people predicting the end of Nikon, in 50 years of using the brand starting with the F and taking in every single number F and D I have never had a Nikon camera fail on me. All the best on recovering from the fire, it sounds as if no one was injured , thank God, Charles.
    Mary Doo likes this.
  11. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Mary, if you are still into capturing birds and small animals without carrying too much weight on a tripod, it is hard to beat the D500 + 500mm/f5.6 PF. That lens has been my most used lens since I bought it in January 2019, either with a D5 or D500. In these days I also use my Z6 a lot, especially for capturing video, but currently among my four Z-mount lenses, the longest focal length I have is still 70mm. The Z5, Z6, and Z7 are excellent landscape bodies with lenses such as the 24-70mm/f4 S and 14-30mm/f4 S.

    I am not sure you want to rebuild your Micro 4/3 system, as the future of Olympus is not certain. I guess you can still count on Panasonic to support Micro 4/3.

    Concerning the F mount, I doubt that I'll buy another F-mount lens, ever. However, I already have lots of F-mount equipment, and knock on wood, hopefully they can last a few more years. But if I lose them, I may need replacement.

    I know it is a lot of work to clean up and deal with insurance, as well as getting the house repaired, etc. But also consider this an opportunity to start over with some of the modern equipment you really need in 2020, without worrying about the past.

    Best wishes.
    Mary Doo likes this.
  12. So true. What you said makes a lot of sense. I am not sure how much leeway I can swap to entirely different equipment at this time. For Nikon, at the very least, I will begin with Z7 with the 24-200; I may get the Sigma Art 14-24 f/2.8 however, as it is the most distortion free at this range. Most likely replacing the D500 with the 300 pf and 80-400. As for the Olympus, I will probably still replace the E-M-1 Mark III for now.
  13. From what I've read and seen, Nikon's AF performance on mirrorless is currently behind both Sony and the latest Canon offerings. That despite two major firmware updates for the Z6/Z7 (allegedly, the Z50 outperforms the Z6/Z7 in AF performance). While I find it commendable that Nikon is finally putting emphasis on substantial firmware upgrades, offering the Z7 with that first iteration did do a great disservice to Nikon. Speaking strictly for myself, testing the Z7 when it came out, it's AF performance was a total turn-off for me as soon as any moving subject was involved. And based on historical experience, I could not expect that Nikon would make some real headway with firmware upgrades (I am still waiting for the d9 AF area mode on the D500). The D500 was the first Nikon DSLR that offered at least some halfway useable Auto AF area mode - on every camera before it, that mode was useless. From what I gather, that AF mode on the Z7 performs no better and possibly at about the level of the D810. Subject tracking initiation has improved with the third firmware iteration - in its original form, it was so cumbersome as to be essentially useless.
    I'm sorry to say that there are better options than the 80-400 - think both Sigma's and Tamron's most recent 150-600mm offerings. Even at its currently greatly reduced (from the release date) price of $2100, the lens is grossly overpriced for what it delivers.

    I am wondering if you could then afford to hold off on buying anything Nikon for the time being - until they come up with their next Z6/Z7 iteration or a body that sits higher up in the hierarchy. And until at least some of the planned lenses are available. So far, Z-mount lenses appear to be excellent - so rather than buying F-mount gear and use an adapter, just wait until what you need is available in Z-mount. At least for me, the 300PF and even more so the 500PF are indispensable and not available from anyone else. They require either the D500 or the D850 for what I do (sadly the latter option is twice as expensive without actually matching performance); I wouldn't want to use the Z7 in its current form behind either. I don't list the D5 or D6 - they are out of my price range and because of their lower resolution not attractive to me. I am not yet familiar enough with the Sony system - but it appears that a A7RIII with the Sony 200-600 might make a good wildlife combo - certainly better than what Nikon currently has to offer in the mirrorless realm.
    Mary Doo likes this.
  14. Bummer. Sorry about that
    I would hate to have to go through that myself.

    I agree with Dieter.
    If you are planning to get an EM1-mk3 anyway, I would wait for the next generation of Nikon Z cameras. Canon just came out with their 2nd generation R, I would think Nikon's 2nd generation Z cameras would be soon.
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2020
    Mary Doo likes this.
  15. Understand, but I need cameras now. LOL!
  16. Thanks for the thoughts. Makes sense. But I do need something now - and who knows what other undesirable would appear in the "next improved and better" one? ;)

    Think I will start with Z7 + 24-200, Sigma Art 12-24 , D500 + something, including 500pf, I have a nightsky workshop coming up, so will definitely need to prepare the equipment for landscape photography now. Currently I do have a few fast lenses that were not affected by the fire.

    As for Sony, the workshop leaders actually use it. But I would be afraid to use a new system on a trip that's coming up in two weeks. Besides that would be an additional system to the two that I already use. Eventually, though, I will surely need to simplify to perhaps just one system - most likely Nikon of course. Life has been too complicated. I had no idea so many equipment appear on the insurance content list - some I thought I had lost and some I have forgotten completely.

    Last edited: Aug 30, 2020
  17. Mary, sorry for your loss. Three years after Harvey, and being a Harvey victim, I feel your pain.

    I have another alternative for you. A new D 500 or a used D5 or a new D6.

    I do not have much knowledge about the Z50. When I checked out the Z6 and Z7, I felt they had enough limitations for wildlife that I passed on them.

    See if Steve Perry's site has any useful info for you.

    Nikon Gear Archives - Backcountry Gallery

    Or Thom Hogan's Z site

    Nikon Z50 Camera Review | Thom Hogan
    Mary Doo likes this.
  18. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    While my D5 has served me very well since 2016, I am a bit skeptical about the D6. I am sure its AF has even further improved, but overall I am not sure it is that much a better camera than the D5. Besides cost, the main issue is that they are both heavy, and I think it is quite clear that we are approaching the end of the DSLR era. That is why I think the D500 + 500mm PF should be a great choice. I am also quite happy with the 80-400mm AF-S VR, but it is an older design by now and better lenses are available. The 300mm/f4 PF is also great, but I find it a bit short for wildlife.

    The Z7 should be a great choice for landscape, but the 24-200mm Z maybe difficult to find in these days. I understand a second shipment is arriving. My problem with Sigma Art lenses is that they are super heavy. If the wide is for a Z body, I am not sure you can get away with the 14-30mm/f4 S, which I like very much and it can use conventional 82mm filters.
    Mary Doo likes this.
  19. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

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