New Nikon Z Interview: We are Working on Models Below Z6 (APS-C)

Here is another interview with Nikon executive for the Nikon Z6 & Z7 full frame mirrorless cameras. Nikon Z7 is now already shipping. According to the interview, Nikon is also working on low end models of Nikon Z series mirrorless cameras, may be APS-C(DX) size, below Nikon Z6.

Highlights from DCW:

But as I said, this is just the beginning. So definitely we will widen our lineup. I cannot confirm that, yes, we are doing a DX, but there will be models below the Z6. We will widen up the range to different users and different price brackets, definitely…

But having an S-line suggests that there should also be something else; non-S-line lenses, which will focus more on affordability. However, they will still meet a high quality standard while focusing on lower cost, so maybe won’t have weather sealing or they’ll use different materials.

But there is something called a ‘global shutter’, which is a sensor that’s exposed all at once – on and off – but that technology is super-expensive at the moment. So, once the technology becomes affordable and could be incorporated into a camera at an acceptable price point, then there may be a solution to not have a mechanical shutter. The technology is there, but the price isn’t there yet.

However, for mirrorless it’s better to have it on the sensor, as because you have an electronic viewfinder there’s no advantage of having the VR in the lens. With sensor-based VR we now have five-axis stabilization, so the lens design is easier and you have more flexibility. For us there would not be much sense to bring VR into the DSLR body, so that you won’t see!

For mirrorless, the F-mount has its limitations. It would keep the body too thick, and the point of mirrorless was to get it thinner, so quite quickly we decided no, we had to reset the foundation for the next-generation of image quality. We really decided not to speed up things for mirrorless – the F-mount would have been our quickest solution but it would not have been our best solution. The Z-mount is the best for mirrorless today – but more importantly for the future.

Basically, if we had added the second card slot the camera would have been bigger – and we didn’t want that. To the pro photographers we’ve spoken to, it’s not been a big issue.

Because of the new mount, actually you cannot make an apple-with-apple comparison of an f/1.8 lens with this system with an f/1.8 lens for a DSLR, because the f/1.8 from thew Z mount is more similar to the kind of image quality you’d get from an f/1.4 on a DSLR. So that’s really never-seen-before image quality.

What we can see now is that the back orders for the Z7 are higher – maybe 60% to 40% for the Z6. On average, I think it will be 50/50. In the first half-year I would expect the Z7 to sell a bit more, and then the Z6 more after one year.

there’s already that technology out there in one system or another, so on top we wanted to bring the next level of image quality to push us into the next 100 years, that’s really been the concept, and you don’t decide that in the short term.

I think we can expect Nikon users to feel at home with the Z system because the menu system is the same, while if you’re new to mirrorless systems you have the luxury of choice. But we have a really well-thought-through concept that offers the next generation of image quality.

The concept sits really in the mount. Specifications could be kind of similar between systems, but whenever you see a specification, it’s just a specification; from the photographers and people who’ve had the chance to actually use the camera, it’s really about touching it and using it, and that’s something you cannot express on paper. Go to your local store and try it!

Read full interview at DCW.