The Nikon Z5 is formally the digital camera big’s new ‘entry-level’ full-frame mirrorless camera, sitting beneath the now barely getting old Nikon Z6 and Z7 from 2018.
However the place precisely has the brand new Z5 minimize corners to assist it attraction to full-frame newcomers? In any case, on paper, it has loads in frequent with the Nikon Z6.
Each cameras share the identical in-body picture stabilization (IBIS) system, 3.69-million dot electronic viewfinder and 273-point hybrid AF system, to not point out nearly an identical physique designs.
Take a more in-depth have a look at their specs sheets, although, and you will find small however necessary variations between the cameras that reveal their differing goal audiences. As we’ll see, the Nikon Z5 seems to be a extra accessible digital camera that is aimed largely at stills photographers, slightly than a real stills-video ‘hybrid’ like its Z6 sibling.
At first look you may assume that the Nikon Z5 and Z6 share the identical sensor – in any case, they each supply round 24MP in resolution.
However their sensors do truly differ barely. The Nikon Z6 has a 24.5MP BSI (backside-illuminated) full-frame CMOS sensor, which we have lengthy been massive followers of. It has excellent dynamic vary and performs effectively all through its native sensitivity vary of ISO 100-51,200.
The Nikon Z5’s sensor, in the meantime, is extra of an unknown amount, as a result of it is a brand-new chip. The principle distinction is that it’s not backside-illuminated, which is often extra of a priority with smaller sensors, however we look ahead to seeing the way it impacts real-world efficiency. It additionally has a native ISO range of 100-51,200 and is paired with the identical Expeed 6 processor because of the Z6.
Put the Nikon Z5 and Z6 subsequent to one another and also you initially battle to inform the distinction. Each cameras are extra compact than their DSLR cousins, and will match comfortably within the hand because of their giant grips.
One different space the place the Nikon Z5 has economized is its rear LCD, which only has a 1.1-million dot decision, in comparison with the two.1-million dot decision of the Z6’s monitor. The truth that the Z5 has the identical 3.69-million dot EVF as its sibling provides weight to the sensation that it is aimed extra on the stills photographer, in contrast to the ‘hybrid’ method of the Z6.
3. Burst shooting
One of the clearest variations between the Z5 and Z6 is their relative burst taking pictures powers, a characteristic that’s notably helpful for sports activities and wildlife taking pictures.
The Nikon Z6 weighs in with a powerful most burst velocity of 12fps, which stays a aggressive fee regardless of the bottleneck of its comparatively modest buffer. However the Nikon Z5 can solely shoot at 4.5fps, a determine that might have been disappointing 5 years in the past.
It is necessary to state that burst speeds aren’t every part in relation to taking pictures motion – autofocus could be simply as vital in relation to nailing pictures of shifting objects, and the Nikon Z5 has the identical Hybrid AF system (with Eye Detection AF and Animal Detection AF) because the Z6. However it’s a spec that is value making an allowance for in case your photographic food regimen is closely weighted in the direction of motion or wildlife.
4. Video skills
Apart from burst taking pictures, that is the opposite massive space the place the Nikon Z6 trumps the brand new Z5 (on paper, at the very least). In comparison with its older brother (and lots of of its mirrorless rivals), the Nikon Z5 has a number of restrictions in relation to taking pictures video.
For a begin, its 4K video mode comes with a reasonably hefty 1.7x crop. That is notably necessary for those who’re planning to vlog or shoot video to camera, as it could possibly make it troublesome to suit topics within the body.
The Nikon Z5 lacks any 120p slo-mo film modes and likewise the choice of recording 10-bit video externally through its HDMI output, which makes it much less interesting to those that wish to edit the colour and look of their movies in post-production.
Maybe the ultimate nail within the coffin of the Z5’s video credentials is the shortage of a completely articulating display, which is an choice you may discover on cheaper full-frame cameras just like the Canon EOS RP and is ideal for solo filmmakers who need to examine their framing whereas filming to camera.
5. Card slots
This is an interesting distinction between these two Z collection cameras – the supposedly much less skilled, hobbyist-friendly digital camera (the Z5) has two card slots, whereas the pro-leaning mannequin (the Z6) solely has one card slot.
In fact, it isn’t fairly so simple as ‘extra means higher’. The Z6 has a single XQD card slot, with Nikon eager to level out that the probabilities of certainly one of these newer playing cards failing is drastically lower than that of SD cards, subsequently justifying the shortage of a backup choice.
Nonetheless, the Nikon Z5’s dual UHS-II SD card slots is definitely a bonus contemplating Nikon’s method to the Z6 and Z7, and offers it an edge over the Canon EOS RP and EOS R (each of which solely have one card slot).
A small, however notable difference between the Nikon Z5 and Z6 is that the previous makes use of a brand new battery known as the EN-EL 15C.
This enables the Z5 to be powered by USB when you’re nonetheless utilizing it, which is helpful if you wish to shoot a timelapse video or do longer shoots. You’ll be able to nonetheless use EN-EL 15B batteries within the Z5, you simply will not get the USB charging operate.
For many who need the reassurance of getting an additional two batteries on faucet, the Z5 can be suitable with the prevailing MB-N10 battery grip.
7. Kit lens
One of essentially the most revealing options of the Nikon Z5 is not a part of the camera itself, however slightly its new equipment lens. It is being launched in a bundle with the brand new Nikkor Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3, which Nikon claims is the “shortest and lightest full-frame mirrorless zoom lens round”.
This kit lens has been designed to be a perfect walkaround choice for many who do not notably need the load or problem of carrying large prime lenses around. The Nikon Z6, in the meantime, will proceed to be bought with the 24-70mm f/4, a lens that weighs nearly as a lot because the Z6 itself at 500g.
What’s notably telling is that the Nikkor Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3 lens is not that can be purchased proper now by itself – it’s totally a lot been designed to be bundled with the Nikon Z5.
Maybe the primary disappointment with the Nikon Z5 is that it’s not fairly as reasonably priced as we had been hoping for. When it is obtainable from “late summer 2020” (so round August/September in Australia and New Zealand), the body-only worth will probably be $1,399 / AU$2,599, or £1,589 within the UK with an FTZ adaptor that allows you to use it with F-mount lenses. You will additionally give you the chance purchase it from with the brand new equipment zoom lens for $1,699 / £1,719 / AU$3,099.
That appears a little bit expensive when you think about that it is doable to select up a body-only Nikon Z6 proper now for around $1,799 / £1,595 / AU$2,999. Including a lens clearly takes that worth significantly past the Nikon Z5, however hopefully the Z5 might in the end find yourself matching the wonderful worth provided by the likes of the Canon EOS RP.