Melville, NY—Nikon expanded its mirrorless Z system with the Z 5, an entry-level, full-frame (FX-format) camera. Also unveiled were the compact Nikkor Z 24–50mm f/4–6.3 full-frame zoom lens and two Z-series teleconverters.
The Nikon Z 5 inherits features from the Z 7 and Z 6 while taking advantage of Nikon’s next-generation Z mount. The budget-friendly camera is for those new to mirrorless or creators looking to elevate their craft using a compact interchangeable-lens camera. Moreover, its feature set includes in-camera vibration reduction (VR) image stabilization (IBIS) as well as a balance of automation and full manual control.
In addition, when connected via a USB-C cord, the Z 5 operates as a webcam. Consequently, it is an option for vloggers, influencers and gamers looking to improve their livestreaming capabilities. (In August, Nikon will release a beta version of its Webcam Utility software for Nikon DSLR and Z cameras, including the Z 5. Initially available for Windows 10, the free software enables compatible Nikon cameras to act as webcams.)
“The Nikon Z 5 offers the next generation of creators a gateway into the full-frame Z series lineup; it opens the door to the limitless possibilities of mirrorless photo and video capture, while providing the means to share their creativity with others,” said Jay Vannatter, executive vice president, Nikon Inc.
“Furthermore, with the addition of the Nikkor Z 24–50mm f/4–6.3, Nikon is introducing the smallest full-frame Nikkor Z lens to date; providing an extremely lightweight, versatile option to help users pursue all creative endeavors, regardless of which Z series camera they use.”
Nikon Z 5 Key Specs
As the new entry point to Nikon’s full-frame mirrorless system, the Z 5 employs an FX-format 24.3-megapixel CMOS sensor. Thus, it becomes the gateway to the benefits of full-frame, helping creators capture detailed images, ultra-shallow depth of field and clean low-light shots.
What’s more, the camera is a solution for capturing flattering portraits, nighttime landscapes and street photography with “gorgeous tones, faithful colors, minimal noise, and revered Nikon color science,” the company announced.
Paired with its sensor is the Expeed 6, Nikon’s fastest image processor to date. As a result, the Z 5 benefits from a boost in processing power and energy efficiency. In addition, with an ISO range up to 51,200 (expandable to 102,400), it effectively reduces noise, maintaining high sensitivity and resolution in low-light situations.
The Z 5 also provides shutter speeds up to 1/8000 for capture fast-moving subjects, such as fast-action sports and wildlife. The camera can also capture full resolution bursts at 4.5 frames per sec with full autofocus/autoexposure (AF/AE).
Photographers will also appreciate its combination of silent photography mode and in-body 5-axis VR stabilization. Together they provide quiet, stable shooting to document sensitive moments without distractions.
Viewing options include a high-resolution, 3.2-inch LCD monitor with the capabilities to tilt, touch, tap, swipe as well as pinch. In addition, its 3.6M-dot Quad-VGA electronic viewfinder (EVF) ensures users can see exposure, ISO, white balance and creative picture controls in real time. For new mirrorless shooters, this makes the transition from using an optical viewfinder easier.
Z 5 Functionality
For emerging creators getting started, the Nikon Z 5 has user-friendly controls and functions. It boasts 273 on-sensor autofocus (AF) points to quickly, accurately track subjects throughout the frame. Moreover, eye-detection AF capabilities help capture the eyes of humans and animals. Plus, its wide array of AF points covers nearly the entire frame, and multiple AF modes give users pinpoint control or fully automatic assurance to lock onto a subject.
In addition, as confidence grows, the Z 5 offers the ability to effortlessly switch between its various automatic creative modes to manual mode. It also has 20 creative picture controls as well as advanced features like focus shift shooting and multiple exposure mode. Here, users can compose unique images, produce extraordinary depth of field, or combine several shots and layer images on top of each other in-camera.
What’s more, video features include 4K UHD/30p or Full HD 1080/60p (full-frame) recording using the camera’s PDAF system. The system is fully customizable to fit any production style. Plus, in-camera VR and electronic VR combat shake when shooting video; and users get the added benefit of focus peaking and the ability to capture stills while recording.
In addition to the traditional interval timer and in-camera time-lapse modes, the Z 5 adopts a new time-lapse movie mode. Subsequently, it provides users with the best of both worlds for more streamlined moviemaking; they have the ability to use images from interval timer mode and create a time-lapse in-camera.
Additional features include a hot shoe for use with Nikon’s Speedlight wireless lighting system; SnapBridge with built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity; two UHS-II SD card slots for overflow, backup or separating RAW and JPEG photos; and a weather-sealed exterior.
Powered by the new EN-EL15c battery, the Z 5 also offers an improvement in the number of shots per charge. Moreover, it is the first Nikon camera to enable constant power through the USB port, even with select portable USB power banks. For added power and grip, the camera supports the MB-N10 hot-swappable battery pack.
Finally, in addition to using Nikon Z lenses, the Z 5 can utilize the vast selection of traditional F-mount Nikkor lenses via the Mount Adapter FTZ. These lenses will also gain the benefits of in-body stabilization.
The Nikon Z 5 will reach retail in August in several configurations: body only for a suggested retail price (SRP) of $1,399.95; in a one-lens kit with the Nikkor Z 24–50mm f/4–6.3, $1,699.95; and in one-lens kit with the Nikkor Z 24–200mm f/4–6.3 VR lens, $2,199.95.
New Nikkor Z Optics
Nikkor Z 24–50mm f/4–6.3 Lens
This is the shortest, lightest and most affordable full-frame zoom lens in the Nikkor Z lineup. For on-the-go creators, the 24–50mm lens is versatile enough to capture vast landscapes and cityscapes as well as street photography and portraits.
Optically designed to take advantage of the wide Z mount, the lens delivers sharpness across the entire frame. Moreover, it is less than three inches long when retracted, making it a compact solution for lightweight travel and street photography.
Photographers can purchase the Nikkor Z 24–50mm f/4–6.3 separately for $399.95. It will also have August availability.
For those who need more telephoto reach in their kit, Nikon added the Z teleconverters TC-1.4X ($549.95) and TC-2.0X ($599.95). They bring 1.4x and
Nikon says the “lightweight teleconverters are great tools for those photographing sports, wildlife and aviation, reducing the need to crop images and allowing for tighter compositions with maximum resolution.”
The TC-1.4X and TC-2.0X teleconverters also minimize lens aberrations. And they do so while retaining focusing speed, VR functionality and minimum focusing distance.
Another advantage is that they allow Nikon Z cameras to retain functionality on all focus points up to f/11.
In addition, the teleconverters have a fluorine coating on the front and rear elements to resist dirt and smudges.
They also boast weather-sealed bodies to protect against the elements.