Nikon Z6 Real Review Based on 3 Years of Personal Use
Even though the Nikon Z6 is three years old (its release date was November 16, 2018), it remains one of the most promising full-frame mirrorless cameras in 2021!
After three years of personal and professional use, this camera exceeded my expectations! With that in mind, I want to share with you what makes the Nikon Z6 mirrorless camera unique! Here’s what I would like to share with you:
- Size & Weight
- Low-Light performance
- EVF & LCD
- XQD Card Slot
- Video quality & Slow Motion
- Battery Life
- Kit Lens
1. Size & Weight
As a travel photographer, camera weight is very important. Every gram counts, especially when you have scheduled a full day of hiking in the mountains of the UAE. The weight of the Nikon Z6 (body only) is just 585 grams. Pair it with the NIKKOR Z 14-30mm f4 at 485 grams or the NIKKOR Z 24-70mm f4 at 500 grams, and you have an incredibly versatile and lightweight camera system!
Nikon has been in the camera industry for years. They create cameras for all different kinds of users. When you buy a new camera, it is essential to see how it feels in your hands. It’s not just about specs, but when you hold it will tell you whether you like it. The ergonomics of the Z6 are excellent. It has a fantastic grip, great placement of the buttons and feels nice to hold it.
3. Image Sensor
The Full Frame BSI CMOS sensor has a hybrid AF system with 273 detection points and 24.5 Megapixels. It is a newer developed sensor for excellent image quality and coverage of up to 90% of the frame. I am happy with the images coming out of this Nikon sensor, JPG or 14-bit RAW. The overall performance, dynamic range, and color depth are superb!
4. Low-Light Performance
The new Nikon Z series Full Frame cameras provide excellent ISO performance (100-51200 or extended at 50-204800). The new CMOS sensor will give you clear images from 50-12800 ISO, which is fantastic for a camera. Photos are still usable at 51200, depending the light in your scene. Personally, the images I have shot up to ISO 6400 are very clear.
The Autofocus of this camera is exceptionally accurate and better than any Nikon DSLR camera because of the newest technologies Nikon has introduced into their mirrorless camera lineup. I never had to worry if I would miss a shot. This camera will exceed your expectations for landscape, travel, and astrophotography!
6. EVF & LCD
The new electronic viewfinders are a game changer! It is very convenient to see your exposure exactly and what your image will look like via the EVF without having to check your LCD screen each time you take a photo. Another advantage of the EVF is the ability to review your images in bright daylight. Both the EVF and LCD also are excellent on the Nikon Z6! The LCD is a touch screen that is bright with vivid colors. You can touch to focus or review your shots by zooming in/out.
7. XQD Card Slot
The Nikon Z6 has one XQD memory card slot, and it’s the successor of the compact flash card. It uses a PCI Express interface for fast data transfer. I never had any issues with the camera during the three-year period I owned the camera. The card is fast at both writing and reading speeds, and if you ask me why there is only one card slot? You don’t need two card slots for a landscape and travel photographer. Also, I trust using the XQD cards.
8. Video Quality & Slow Motion
The advantage of new mirrorless camera systems is the ability to use them for both stills and video. If you are a video creator, you will love this camera! The Nikon Z6 records 4K UHD at 30 frames per second and 1080p at 120 frames per second uncropped. It also uses a 10-bit N-log with a timecode for easy post-process color grading. I love the footage coming out of the camera.
9. Battery Life
The Nikon EN-EL15b is a lithium-ion battery for the Nikon Z6. It is not the same as the one used on the Nikon D780 can last up to 2200 shots, but it’s still pretty decent. An extra battery in your camera bag will give you security for shooting the whole day. Personally, one battery is enough for my style of shooting. Also, you can use a power bank to recharge your camera and use it simultaneously.
10. Kit Lens
The kit lens that comes with the Nikon Z6 is the NIKKOR Z 24-70mm f/4 S. This lens, as all of the Nikon lenses for the new Z mount system, is extremely sharp! The Autofocus is fast and reliable, and you barely hear any noise when trying to acquire focus. All my images are tack-sharp with great colors and no vignetting at all. This particular lens has served me well and is an excellent investment, even if it is an f/4 lens. It is also weather-sealed.
Overall, I am pleased with the purchase of the Nikon Z6. Initially, I was skeptical about jumping into a mirrorless camera, but there are many benefits. The new, improved Nikon sensors combined with the Z-mount lenses produce amazingly sharp images! In addition, the ergonomics, EVF, and other features of this camera are superb. I recommend this camera to anyone who wants to take beautiful images and take their photography to new heights.
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