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Nikon Z9 Review

Nikon Z9 Review

2021 saw the introduction of new cameras and lenses that piqued photographers' interest worldwide. One of which is the Nikon Z9. Although Nikon Z9 came in late to the pro mirrorless party, Nikon affirms that what some might see as tardiness enabled it to employ the benefits that a mirrorless design is capable of. And yes, it was worth the wait:
The Nikon Z9 is the mirrorless camera professional photographers have been waiting for. It has some amazing specifications and unique features, and so we think it’s only fitting to explore what makes this camera so remarkable.

Let's review, shall we?

Specifications of the Nikon Z9 camera

  • 30 fps JPEG shooting
  • 7MP Stacked CMOS sensor
  • 120 fps JPEG shooting at 11MP resolution
  • 12-bit 8K N-Raw, 8K/60p, and 4K ProRes RAW to be added with f/w
  • XM dot rear LCD with multi-directional tilt
  • 20 fps Raw shooting (for over 1000 compressed Raws)
  • Internal 10-bit N-Log and HLG capture
  • 69M dot OLED EVF with reduced lag and greater brightness
  • 8K/30p capture with ProRes 422 HQ option
  • 4K-from-8K
  • Twin CFexpress Type B card slots
  • Full-time electronic shutter camera
  • Sensors shield to protect the sensor

Key Features of the Z9 Camera

●     Design

Physically, the Nikon Z9 has similar features to the Nikon Z6, including the exact button placement, vertical grip, menu design, and shape.

The Nikon Z9 weighs approximately 1,340 grams, with a magnesium alloy body that's completely weather-sealed. No doubt, it is pretty heavy for a mirrorless camera. However, it is 20% smaller, which is good news for portability fans.

 For seamless switching between manual and autofocus modes, Nikon integrated an AF mode button on the camera's body. And round the rear is a handy feature – a dual-axis monitor that turns 90-degrees in both vertical and horizontal directions.

Like the Nikon D6, the Z9's rear buttons also illuminate whenever it gets dark, but you can turn this off if you want to stay a bit more inconspicuous.

What's more, the info display on the Z9 easily rotates when you switch into portrait mode, which helps prevent craning your neck. And the i-menu featured on the Nikon Z6 II is also present here, giving you swift one-button access to several customizable functions like white balance, ISO, and switching between JPEG and raw.

●     Stacked CMOS sensor

The Z9 has a Stacked CMOS sensor with unique features that involve video performance, readout speed, burst rate, and AF updates. Also, the sensor has the fastest readout rate, resulting in a flash sync time of 1/200 sec.

●     Battery

Z9 is powered by the EN-EL18d, the most recent version of the large battery utilized by the earlier pro-grade Nikons variant. Nikon designed the Z9 to deliver 740 shots per charge when photographers use the rear LCD and 700 for the viewfinder.

●     Autofocus and burst shooting

Nikon stated that the z9 has the industry's best simultaneous subject recognition. That means the camera can recognize 10 different subjects in one frame and track them individually. Now, this can come in handy for photographers shooting busy scenes with different subjects.

●     Image and video quality

With a 8256 x 5504 resolution, the z9 will not disappoint you in terms of image precision. Thanks to its powerful processor, which is 10x faster than Z7, the Z9 reads information captured by the sensor quickly and without distortion.

New algorithms help the Z9 process noise in low-light conditions. And in terms of video, Nikon Z9 does impressively too. It captures both 4K (at 120p) and 8K (at 30p) while using the whole width of the sensor to enhance quality.

Screen and viewfinder

You can rotate the Z9's 3.2-inch screen in four directions to help capture portrait or landscape photographs from below or above the head height. The screen is clear and detailed, and the mechanism feels sturdy.

Nikon z9 also has a "touch-sensitive" screen, so you may tap or use the physical controllers to access primary and I-menus options.

In addition, the Z9 sports an electronic viewfinder, which Nikon says is the brightest of any contemporary full-frame mirrorless camera at 3000-nits. Besides, you can also manually raise your viewfinder's illumination to prevent struggling when shooting in a bright setting.

●     ISO performance

The Nikon Z 9 has an ISO setting of 64 as its default. The ISO setting can be increased to 25,600. The camera's expanded range allows it to use ISOs ranging from 32 to 102,400.

●     Mechanical shutter

The Nikon Z 9 has successfully removed the mechanical shutter entirely because of the 45.7-megapixel, which has a lightning-fast readout speed. This means that its sensor no longer has built-in dust protection.

On the bright side, no mechanical shutter implies that you don't need to bother about increasing shutter count or moving parts. But while there isn't any shutter, Nikon introduced a built-in blind that comes down when you switch off the camera.

●     Speed

You can save the Nikon Z9 images on two XQD cards or CF-Express type B cards. These cards will have enough speed to accept the massive amount of data produced when shooting at maximum speed or when using the camera to record an 8K video.

●     Price

The Nikon Z9 will be available for $5,499 / £5,299 / AU$8,999 upon release. Compared to the Nikon D6 – which cost 6,496USD / AU $10,378 /£6,299 /at launch last year – the Nikon Z9 is cheaper than the alternatives. It's also a good deal compared to its competitors. As a medium-format camera, the Nikon Z9 costs more than the Nikon Z7.

Other Nikon New Releases to Look Out for

Nikon has also released the NIKKOR Z DX 18-140mm f/3.5-6.3 VR and the
NIKKOR Z 28mm f/2.8 Full Frame Prime Lens for Z-Mount. The and the NIKKOR Z DX 18-140mm f/3.5-6.3 VR features a 7.8x high-power zoom lens that is remarkably small and easy to carry.

The lens achieves consistently high resolution, irrespective of shooting distance or focal length. This alone makes it the perfect option for video and still shooting.

The Nikon NIKKOR Z 28mm f/2.8 Full Frame Prime Lens for Z-mount is a lightweight and compact prime lens for Nikon Z series cameras. With a length of about 1.7-inches and a weight of 155g, this lens is the lightest among NIKKOR Z prime lenses, making it perfect for capturing group pictures, daily snapshots, landscapes, and cityscapes.

And since it is pretty much versatile, inexpensive, and small, the DX-format Nikon Z series users will love this new lens.

Verdict

In all, the Nikon Z9 is a mirrorless camera that has made a name for itself for being late to the party. The Z-mount gives photographers the shortest flange distance and the best throat diameter of any full-frame device.

But has Nikon done enough to produce an incredible professional camera? The Nikon Z9 has already been put through its paces, and so far, we're delighted.Everything that needed improvement (especially with the Nikon Z 6II and Nikon Z 7II's autofocus system) was improved.

Even better, it has been improved significantly. The Nikon Z 9 is an incredible camera, and it is currently one of the best sports, action, and wildlife cameras on the market.

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