Photography News 85 Web

Big test

PRICE: £2999

NIKON.CO.UK

Is the Nikon Z 7II what the Z 7 should have been? Is it worth Z 7 owners upgrading to the Z 7II? Is the Z 7II the camera Nikon DSLR owners have been waiting for? These, and many more questions, are answered in our review

SPECS

›   Price Z 7II body £2999, Z 7II with 24-70mm f/4 £3549, Z 7II with FTZ adapter £3139, Z 7II with 24-70mm f/4 and FTZ adapter £3679 ›   Sensor 45.7MP BSI CMOS sensor with dual Expeed 6 processors ›   Sensor format 35mm full-frame 35.9x23.9mm, 8256x5504 pixels, 12-bit or 14-bit Raw capture in compressed, uncompressed or lossless compressed ›   ISO range 64-25,600 (expandable to Lo1.0 ISO 32 and H1.0 51,200 H2.0 102,400 equivalent) ›   Shutter type Vertical-travel focal-plane mechanical; electronic front curtain; electronic ›   Shutter range 30secs to 1/8000sec, extendable to 900secs in manual mode. B, flash sync at 1/200sec ›   Drivemodes Fastest rate 10fps (12-bit Raw), 9fps (14-bit Raw) ›   Metering system Matrix, centre- weighted, spot, highlight-weighted ›   Exposuremodes PASM ›   Exposure compensation +/-5EV ›   Monitor 2.1 million dot, tilting 3.2in touchscreen, 100% frame coverage ›   Viewfinder 3.69m dot OLED EVF ›   Autofocus Hybrid phase detection/ contrast AF with AF assist ›   Focus points andmodes 493 phase detection points in single AF – usable in single-point, pinpoint (photo mode only), dynamic-area AF, wide-area (S), wide-area (L), wide-area AF (L-people), wide-area AF (L-animals), auto-area AF, auto-area AF (people), auto-area AF (animals) ›   Video 4K UHD 3840x2190: 60p (progressive), 30p, 25p 24p; 1920x1080: 120p, 100p, 60p, 50p, 30p, 25p 24p; 1920x1080 slow-motion 30p x4/25p x4/24p x5 ›   Video formats MOV, MP4 ›   Connectivity Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, HDMI type-C, USB-C, 3.5mm stereo jack audio in, 3.5mm stereo jack audio out ›   Other key features In-body 5-axis image sensor shift IS, Lens shift VR with VR lenses, focus bracketing, 4K time lapse, Active D-Lighting, picture control system, dust and weather resistant ›   Battery EN-EL15c rechargeable Li-ion; EN-EL15a and EN-EL15b can be used but gives less shooting capacity ›   Storagemedia CFexpress (Type B), XQD and SD, SDHC (UHS-II compliant), SDXC (UHS-II compliant) ›   Dimensions (wxhxd) 134x100.5x69.5mm ›   Weight 705g body with battery and card Contact nikon.co.uk

WORDS AND IMAGES BY WILL CHEUNG

IMAGES Design-wise, the Z 7 and Z 7II bodies are almost identical – the Z 7II is almost 2mm deeper, probably to accommodate the second SD card slot

IT’S AN INDICATION how highly featured cameras are now that many newmodels only offer minor improvements fromprevious models. And, on paper at least, this is the case with the Nikon Z 7II compared with the Z 7. The two cameras share many key features, including the same 45.7-megapixel sensor, the same five-axis in-body image stabilisation, and the same 493-point AF system. However, the last one does benefit fromone of the Z 7II’s updated features – instead of one, it has two Expeed 6 image processors, so autofocusing is more capable on the newmodel. In addition, there are two card slots on the Z 7II rather than one, with a

WHYNIKONEVER THOUGHT THAT PUTTING JUSTONE CARDSLOTON THE Z 7WAS ACCEPTABLE, ONLY IT KNOWS

UHS-II-compliant SD card joining the CFexpress B/XQD, and this at the cost of a body that is a tiny bit deeper. Why Nikon ever thought that putting one card slot on the Z 7 – a pro camera – was acceptable, only it knows, but at least this is addressed on the Z 7II. Apart from the almost 2mmdeeper body and a weight gain of around 30g, the two cameras are identical in terms

Moreover, the Z 7II’s generous grip means I can walk around with the camera in hand but powered down, and in one swift, fluidmovement be ready to shoot very, very quickly. Around the back, switching between video and still shooting is done via a large control, at the centre of which is a DISP button that scrolls through info/display options on the monitor and in the EVF. You can have the virtual spirit level, the histogramor camera settings on show. There is one obvious omission: in the EVF you can have camera data on show and this does not impinge on the image area, but on the monitor you always have battery state and key exposure settings on show and this sits on top of the image area. It’s annoying that there’s no clean, data-free monitor viewing option. And while I amon the subject of niggles, I'mnot a fan of the self-timer, as it cancels itself when you turn off the camera. Nikon needs to let the user

of control layout and overall design. The body is dust- and drip-resistant with a flip-out tilting touchscreen and an info LCD screen on the top-plate. Incidentally, the resolution of the monitor and the EVF are the same as the Z 7, so with 2.1 million dot and 3.69 million dot resolutions respectively, and the EVF’s 60fps refresh rate is the same too. That compares poorly with some rivals now offering 5.76 million dot resolution and 120fps refresh. On the left of the body is the exposure mode dial, which is locked until you push and hold the central button, and there’s the usual PASM set of exposure modes, plus three user settings. The right side, apart from the LCD panel, has an input dial, shutter button with compensation and ISO buttons close by, and a thumb-operated input dial. It’s a personal thing but having the on/off switch, ISO and compensation buttons all usable with the right hand is ergonomically perfect.

IMAGES The exposure dial has three user positions, so you can store settings for specific subjects for convenience

30 Photography News | Issue 85

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