The Z5 is Nikon’s new $1,399 entry-level full-frame mirrorless camera

Jul 21, 2020

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

The Z5 is Nikon’s new $1,399 entry-level full-frame mirrorless camera

Jul 21, 2020

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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Nikon has now officially announced their new entry-level full-frame mirrorless camera, the Nikon Z5. It’s $1,399 has a 24.3-megapixel sensor, dual UHS-II card slots, shoots 4K video, 5-axis sensor-shift IBIS, and Nikon’s even made an official vertical grip available for it.

The specs for the new Nikon Z5 are pretty much as previously expected, although a few things have been confirmed. The 4K video does indeed only go up to 30fps and 1080p HD at up to 60fps. The dual card slots are, surprisingly, UHS-II, which means it should be able to clear that stills buffer quite quickly.

YouTube video

Despite being only $1,399, the Z5 looks like a very capable system. It’s not quite as capable as more expensive Nikon’s D780 DSLR, but that’s where the Nikon Z6 steps in. It’s essentially the mirrorless equivalent to the dead D600 DSLR line, but with some significant upgrades, like a faster maximum shutter speed, 4K UHD video, and a way more advanced autofocus system.

MountNikon Z
FormatFX (Full-Frame)
SensorCMOS
Resolution6016 x 4016
Bit-depth14-Bit
ISO Range100-51,200 (Extended: 50 to 102400)
Mechanical shutter1/8000 to 30 sec
Flash Sync1/200, AutoFP High Speed Sync supported
Continuous shooting4.5fps
Focus type273 point phase-detection
Focus modesContinuous-Servo AF (C), Full-Time Servo (F), Manual Focus (M), Single-Servo AF (S)
Stabilisation5-axis sensor-shift IBIS
Viewfinder0.5-in. 3.69m-dot OLED electronic viewfinder
LCD3.2–in. 1.04m-dot tilting touch-sensitive LCD with 170° viewing angle
Internal videoH.264/MOV/MPEG-4
UHD 4K (3840 x 2160) at 23.976/25/29.97fps)
Full HD (1920 x 1080) at 23.976/25/29.95/50/59.94fps)
External video8-Bit 4K UHD up to 29.97fps
Memory card slots2x UHS-II SD
ConnectivityWi-Fi, Bluetooth
Dimensions134 x 100.5 x 69.5 mm (5.28 x 3.96 x 2.74″)
Weight590g (1.3lb) body only

Disappointingly, although perhaps not surprisingly, there’s no flippy out LCD. I was really hoping Nikon would bring this D5x00 series tradition to at least some of their mirrorless cameras, but apparently not. With Sony and Panasonic jumping hard on the vlogger crowd lately, and Canon just doing Canon, it’s a sector that Nikon seems to be continually ignoring. And this is the body that most vloggers would have likely turned to over the Z50, Z6 or Z7 if they were looking to go Nikon for their vlogging needs as they still don’t have any kind of real 4K replacement to the D5x00 series.

Anyway, for what it costs, it’s a pretty impressive looking little camera. It’s not amazingly high specs, but it’s not terrible, either. It has a mag alloy body, weather sealing, advanced autofocus with Eye AF and Animal AF, and there’s a new 24-50mm f/4-6.3 kit lens to go along with it.

The Nikon Z5 is available to pre-order now for $1,396.95 body only, $1,696.95 with the 24-50mm lens or $2,196.95 with the 24-200mm lens and is expected to start shipping in August

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John Aldred

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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2 responses to “The Z5 is Nikon’s new $1,399 entry-level full-frame mirrorless camera”

  1. Michael Estwik Avatar
    Michael Estwik

    So, when are they going to release the Pro stuff?

    1. MegaNickels Avatar
      MegaNickels

      What makes this not a pro camera?