Pro Moviemaker Spring 2019



THE VERDICT Pitted squarely against

Sony’s much-admired A7 III as a hybrid shooter’s dream camera, the Z 6 offers plenty to impress. And particularly so if you are an existing Nikon DSLR user – the FTZ adapter that can be bought alone or as part of a kit will unlock all the lenses you’ve got. The camera is a much better offering for video than the pricier Z 7 and, as a hybrid camera, 24.5 megapixels is plenty of resolution for almost any client. On top of that, there’s a decent 12fps frame rate – though it does lack features like autoexposure at that top whack. The EVF is superb – not perfect, but the best I’ve used, and generally the camera handles really well. Price wise, it’s more attractive than its big brother for early adopters and well pitted against its Sony and Canon rivals. Features: 9 Prettymuch all you’ll need from image stabilisation to 10-bit Log and (soon) Raw, apart from 4K 60p Performance: 9 Nice, clean footage at most ISO settings, AF is also great for video Handling: 9 Gives a great hold, intuitive layout and lots of customisation if required Value formoney: 8 Compares pretty well to other mirrorless cameras in its class HOW IT RATES OVERALL RATING: 9/10 If youwant amirrorless hybrid body for stills and video, it’s hard to look past the Z 6, as it does somany things well Pros: Excellent video and stills options, build and handling Cons: 4K 30pmaximum, 120fps slowmotion limited to 1080p, no in-camera 4K time-lapse

“The electronic viewfinder is excellent for composition. It’s big, bright and clear”

ABOVE The Z 6’s tracking AF does a good job in video mode, keeping moving

when shooting stills at a high frame rate, which canmake it

difficult to follow the subject. This is a downside if you’re intending to shoot that way, but not much of a problem if you’re more video- centric. It’s only Sony’s A9 that offers a completely uninterrupted view in such situations – and that’s not the camera the Z 6 is up against. I also found the EVF a little slow to switch on when brought up to the eye, but I’m impatient like that. It obviously wouldn’t be a problem when filming running off the screen or an external monitor. The Z 6’s rear LCD is excellent and the only drawback is that it doesn’t swivel. One of the oft-quoted downsides of the Z series cameras is their single XQD card slot and limited battery life. It’s true these could be problematic, but with the incoming firmware update allowing use of CFexpress cards and the camera running well off a power adapter, it’s not a problem for extended shooting periods, such as when you do time-lapses. Neither are deal breakers in my opinion.

subjects in focus through a range of movements

The way buttons are arranged, mostly on the right side of the back panel, means it’s possible to operate one-handed, too. There’s also a mini joystick for AF point selection, which is close enough to the AF-ON button for an easy transition. Like the Z 7, there’s an ‘i’ button that brings up a quick menu and this is customisable, so you can set it to primarily control video functions if you want. While it’s not so great for focus pulling, the advantage of the digital ring on the Z lenses is that it can be set to control aperture or exposure compensation for smooth adjustment. Many of the buttons can also be customised, including the two paddle-like function buttons near the lens mount. As on the Z 7, the electronic viewfinder is excellent for composition. It’s big, bright, clear and the best I’ve used to date. It’s as close to an optical viewfinder as I’ve used and it doesn’t drop its frame rate much in low light either. The only downside is that it stutters

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