Sony has run circles around rivals with its A7 series full-frame mirrorless cameras, most recently the A7 III and A7R III. When Nikon and Canon finally released their own models (the EOS R and Z7/Z6), they showed that there is one advantage to being number two. Both companies were able to develop all-new mounts that maximize the potential of full-frame sensors, setting themselves up for a strong future.
But for Nikon’s new system to succeed, it has to sell Z6 and Z7 camerasright now. Canon arguably messed up its RF mount debut with the $2,300 EOS R, releasing an otherwise strong camera that got mediocre reviewsbecause of crippled 4K video. On paper, the Nikon Z7 is stronger, with full-frame 4K video, in-body stabilization and a high-resolution 45.7-megapixel sensor. (Yes, it’s much more expensive at $3,400, but Nikon will soon release the 24.5-megapixel Z6 with near-identical specs and a cheaper $2,000 price tag.)
So, how does the Nikon perform in the real world? It’s no Sony A7R III killer yet, and can’t even match the capabilities of its DSLR sibling D850. However, Nikon did a lot of things right with the Z7 that its long-standing nemesis, Canon, did not. If you’ve already invested in Nikon DSLR lenses or are looking to get into a mirrorless camera for the first time and have the budget, the Z7 is a great choice.
- Great 10-bit full-frame 4K video
- In-body stabilization
- Wide choice of lenses with adapter
- Good ergonomics
- Excellent image quality
- Mediocre autofocus subject tracking
- Single card slot uses non-standard XQD format
- Touchscreen display doesn’t flip around