The 10 Best Nikon Z Series Cameras in 2023 – Reviews and Buyer’s Guide

Nikon Z Series cameras have become extremely popular among both amateur and professional photographers due to their exceptional performance and advanced features. These cameras are equipped with cutting-edge technology that allows users to capture stunning photos and videos with ease. However, with so many options available, it can be daunting to choose the best Nikon Z Series camera for your specific needs. That’s why we have compiled a list of the top 10 best Nikon Z Series cameras and created a comprehensive buying guide to assist you in making an informed decision. So, whether you are a seasoned photographer or a beginner looking to upgrade your gear, this article is the ultimate guide to finding the best Nikon Z Series camera for your photography needs.

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Last update on 2024-02-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Everything you Need to Know About Nikon Z Series Cameras

The Nikon Z-series is an impressive range of mirrorless cameras that combines sophisticated features and user-friendly design. The series features compact and lightweight bodies with full-frame sensors, enabling users to capture stunning images with excellent clarity, color accuracy, and dynamic range. Nikon has packed in advanced autofocus systems, speedy processing capabilities and 4K video recording to create a competitive alternative to traditional DSLRs. The cameras also feature a range of connectivity options, including Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, making it easy to share your images and videos.

The Nikon Z-series offers a range of models to suit different skill levels and photography needs. The Z50 is perfect for entry-level photographers, while the Z6 and Z7 provide more advanced features for enthusiasts and professionals. The series boasts compatibility with a vast selection of Nikkor Z lenses, as well as F-mount Nikkor lenses via an adapter. Overall, the Nikon Z-series’s lightweight design, robust build quality, and a wide range of features make it a hugely versatile range of cameras that can produce outstanding results.

The Best Nikon Z Series Cameras to Buy Today

RANK 1
Nikon Z 5 | Our most compact full-frame mirrorless stills/video camera | Nikon...
  • 24.3MP Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera | Nikon’s most compact, lightweight full-frame interchangeable lens Z series camera
  • Outstanding Image Quality | Sharp, lifelike details, vibrant colors and great low-light performance
  • 4K/30p and 1080/60p Video Recording | Crisp, smooth videos with shallow depth of field; USB power delivery; HDMI output
  • Eye-Detection Autofocus | Automatically locks onto the eyes of people, dogs and cats and tracks them as they move around the frame
  • 5-Axis In-Body Image Stabilization | Capture steady handheld videos and sharp photos; shoot at slower shutter speeds in low light without causing camera blur
SaleRANK 2
Nikon Z 50 with Two Lenses | Compact mirrorless stills/video camera with...
  • Compact, lightweight and durably constructed mirrorless camera
  • First DX-format mirrorless camera to use a large 55 millimeter lens mount, offering advantages in high image quality and lowlight performance.
  • 20.9 MP sensor with robust 4K UHD video features
  • Built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth for simple pairing to a smartphone.
  • "Selfie" flip down touch LCD screen, great for self-portraits and vlogging.
SaleRANK 3
Nikon Z 8 | Professional full-frame mirrorless stills/video hybrid camera |...
  • 45.7MP stacked CMOS sensor and EXPEED 7 processing engine.
  • Nikon’s most advanced autofocus system. AF algorithm developed using deep learning technology, detects focus as low as -9 EV, combines subject detection and...
  • Internal 8K/60p and 4K/120p video. Internal 12-bit N-RAW and ProRes RAW recording.
  • Flexible still image file formats. RAW 14-bit, High Efficiency RAW, 10-bit HEIF and JPEG 8-bit.
  • Beautiful portraits made easy. Skin Softening, Portrait Impression Balance and Improved White Balance features. Blazing fast continuous shooting. 20, 30, 60 and...
RANK 4
Nikon Z50 DX Mirrorless Camera with NIKKOR Z DX 16-50mm f/3.5-6.3 VR Lens -...
  • This Certified Refurbished product is refurbished to factory specifications, it shows limited or no wear
  • Includes all original accessories plus a 90 Day Warranty
  • Nikon Z50 DX Mirrorless Camera Body w NIKKOR Z DX 16-50mm f/3.5-6.3 VR Lens
  • 20.9 Megapixel DX-Format CMOS Image Sensor | Built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth | 209-Point Hybrid Autofocus | Native ISO 100–51,200 | EXPEED 6 Image Processing |...
  • INCLUDED IN THE BOX: Nikon Z50 DX-format Mirrorless Camera Body | EN-EL25 Rechargeable Li-ion Battery | MH-32 Battery Charger | UC-E21 USB Cable | AN-DC20 Strap...
SaleRANK 5
Nikon Z 6II | Versatile full-frame mirrorless stills/video hybrid camera | Nikon...
  • Mirrorless versatility on a whole new level. 24.5MP BSI resolution that excels in low light. 14 FPS suitable for fast action. 4K UHD Video performance at its...
  • Full frame. Full pixel readout. Full featured 4K UHD Video. Top of the line video performance with 4K UHD 60p using full pixel readout and a host of outstanding...
  • Dual card slots (CFexpress/XQD plus UHS-II SD). Flexibility and peace of mind when shooting important moments or on assignment, such as wedding and event...
  • Vertical Grip Ready. Now compatible with the new vertical battery grip for those in need of more power and easier shutter operation when shooting vertically....
  • One mount accepts them all. Compatible with a growing line of NIKKOR Z lenses as well as approx. 360 F-mount NIKKOR lenses with FTZ mount adapter (sold...
RANK 6
Nikon Z 7II | Ultra-high resolution full-frame mirrorless stills/video camera |...
  • Every little detail matters. 45.7MP. Powerful AF performance. NIKKOR Z lenses. Intuitive functionality. The most sophisticated tool for high resolution imaging.
  • Subject acquisition with speed and precision. 3.3x more buffer capacity than the original Z 7. Faster continuous shooting. Improved AF performance and...
  • Dual card slots (CFexpress/XQD and UHS-II SD). Flexibility and peace of mind when shooting important moments or on assignment, such as wedding and event...
  • Vertical Grip Ready. Now compatible with the new vertical battery grip for those in need of more power and easier shutter operation when shooting vertically. 4K...
  • One mount accepts them all. Compatible with a growing line of NIKKOR Z lenses as well as approx. 360 F-mount NIKKOR lenses with FTZ mount adapter (sold...
RANK 7
Nikon Z50 Mirrorless Camera Body 4K UHD DX-Format 2 Lens Kit NIKKOR Z DX 16-50mm...
  • NIKON USA AUTHORIZED - Includes Full NIKON USA WARRANTY
  • Superior rendering performance and rich power of expression have been concentrated into a compact and lightweight body with the Nikon DX-format Z 50 Mirrorless...
  • 4K UHD Movie Recording in DX-format based full-frame | Also supports recording of 4K UHD movies without any crop | Equipped with a variety of cinematic...
  • 209 focus points offer wide AF coverage in the frame - approx. 87% horizontal and 85% vertical | Eye-detection AF for amazingly sharp and impressive portraits |...
  • BUNDLE INCLUDES: Nikon Z50 DX-format Mirrorless Camera Body | NIKKOR Z DX 16-50mm f/3.5-6.3 VR Lens | NIKKOR Z DX 50-250mm f/4.5-6.3 VR | Front & Rear Lens Caps...
RANK 8
Nikon Z 9 | Flagship professional full-frame stills/video mirrorless camera |...
  • 45.7MP Stacked CMOS sensor and EXPEED 7 image processing. Fast powerful AF that can keep up with the fastest subjects and frame rates.
  • Subject detection uses deep learning to automatically detect and track people, cats, dogs, birds, cars, motorcycles, bicycles, trains and planes in still and...
  • Capture 45.7MP stills at 20 or 30 fps; 120 fps stills at 11MP, all with full AF and AE, and no viewfinder blackout. 8K/30p video capture in-camera for over 2...
  • 10-bit 4K/30p from oversampled 8K, recorded in-camera as ProRes 422 HQ or H.265 video.
  • New high-efficiency RAW file format is 1/3 the size of uncompressed RAW while retaining the same high image quality and dynamic range as conventional RAW files.
RANK 9
Nikon Z 50 Mirrorless Digital Camera with 16-50mm and 50-250mm Lenses (1632) +...
  • Bundle Includes: Nikon Z 50 Mirrorless Digital Camera with 16-50mm and 50-250mm Lenses (1632), Deluxe Padded Camera Bag, 46mm UV Filter, SanDisk 64GB Extreme...
  • Key Features: 20.9MP DX-Format CMOS Sensor -- EXPEED 6 Image Processor -- UHD 4K and Full HD Video Recording -- 2.36m-Dot OLED Electronic Viewfinder
  • The body design is impressively sleek yet still ergonomic to benefit all-day-long shooting. A high-resolution 2.36m-dot OLED EVF benefits working in bright...
  • The DX-format 20.9MP CMOS sensor is paired with the EXPEED 6 image processor to provide a versatile mixture of high sensitivity, nuanced image quality, and fast...
  • Besides imaging, the sensor's design also incorporates a 209-point hybrid autofocus system, which uses both phase-detection and contrast-detection methods to...
RANK 10
Nikon Z6II Mirrorless Digital Camera with Nikon FTZ II Mount Adapter Bundle (2...
  • BUNDLE INCLUDES: Nikon Z 6II Mirrorless Digital Camera (Body Only) and Nikon FTZ II Mount Adapter
  • DUAL PROCESSORS: The Z 6II is powered by not one, but two EXPEED 6 processing engines that work together for faster image processing, more buffer capacity, and...
  • DUAL CARD SLOTS: Now you have options. One slot accepts CFExpress (Type B) and XQD cards. The other slot accepts standard SD cards. Use the format you prefer....
  • CONNECTIVITY: Z 6II�s connectivity doesn�t stop with the smartphone. Transfer your shots directly to a PC or Mac over Wi-Fi�no card readers or USB cables...

Last update on 2024-02-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Reasons for Buying Nikon Z Series Cameras

There are several compelling reasons to consider purchasing a Nikon Z Series camera. Whether you’re a professional photographer or an avid hobbyist, these innovative cameras offer a range of features and benefits that make them an attractive choice for capturing stunning photos and videos. Here are some of the key reasons why you might want to invest in a Nikon Z Series camera.

High-quality images and video

Nikon Z series cameras are renowned for their high-quality images and video. These cameras feature a large full-frame sensor that captures stunningly vivid colors, sharp details, and a wide tonal range. The cameras also offer advanced processing capabilities, enabling users to shoot in low light conditions without compromising on image quality. Additionally, the high-resolution electronic viewfinder and large rear monitor display images with great clarity, allowing photographers to easily compose their shots and achieve their desired results. Overall, the Nikon Z series cameras are an excellent choice for professional photographers, videographers, and anyone who is looking to capture stunning and high-quality images and videos.

Advanced autofocus technology

Nikon Z Series Cameras are renowned for their advanced autofocus technology, which allows photographers to capture sharp and clear images with ease. This technology is achieved through the camera’s hybrid autofocus system, which combines phase detection AF and contrast detection AF to increase accuracy and speed.

The Nikon Z Series Cameras have a highly sophisticated AF system with an impressive number of focus points – up to 493 points to be precise, which covers a large surface of the sensor and ensures the camera can lock onto any subject with precision. The autofocus system is also highly sensitive, and it can even detect subjects in low light conditions, allowing photographers to capture stunning images in all lighting conditions. Overall, the advanced autofocus technology of the Nikon Z Series Cameras makes them the ideal choice for professional photographers who demand nothing but the best in image quality.

Compact and portable design

The Nikon Z Series Cameras are known for their compact and portable design, which makes them the perfect choice for photographers who are always on the move. With these cameras, photographers can easily capture high-quality images regardless of their location. The lightweight and compact nature of the Nikon Z Series Cameras make them easy to carry around, which is a major advantage. Whether you are hiking up a mountain or traveling to a different country, the compact design means that you can easily fit the camera into your bag or carry-on luggage.

This feature is particularly useful for photographers who travel frequently. With the Nikon Z Series Cameras, photographers no longer have to sacrifice the quality of their images for the sake of convenience. They can capture amazing photos on the go without having to lug around heavy equipment. The compact and portable design of these cameras makes them a must-have for any photographer who values mobility and convenience.

What Things to Consider when Buying Nikon Z Series Cameras?

When looking for the Best Nikon Z Series Cameras, there are certain factors that are crucial to consider. These factors will help you make an informed decision and ultimately choose the right camera that fits your specific needs and preferences.

Budget

It is important to consider the budget before buying Nikon Z series cameras because these are high-end mirrorless cameras that come with advanced features and specifications. The prices of these cameras can range from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars depending on the model, lenses, and accessories you choose. Therefore, you need to decide on a budget that you can afford to avoid overspending or buying a camera that does not meet your requirements.

Moreover, the Nikon Z series offers various models, and each has different features and specifications. You need to research and compare the different models based on your budget and requirements to choose the best one. Some models come with a full-frame sensor, whereas others come with a crop sensor. Similarly, some models are suitable for video shooting, while others are ideal for still photography. Hence, considering your budget is crucial in selecting the best Nikon Z series camera that meets your needs and preferences.

Purpose of use

Considering the purpose of use before buying a camera from the Nikon Z Series can be crucial in making the right selection. These cameras are designed to cater to different purposes such as sports, wildlife, landscape, portraits, etc. For instance, if you intend to shoot wildlife, you might require a camera with fast and precise autofocus, a high frame rate, and a long battery life. Similarly, if you plan to shoot landscapes, you might need a camera with high resolution, dynamic range, and good color reproduction. Therefore, considering the purpose of use can help you to identify the camera with the right features and capabilities that meet your specific requirements.

Moreover, purchasing a camera without considering the purpose of use can be wasteful since you may end up with a device that cannot fulfill your photography needs. It may also result in overspending on features that you may not need. Therefore, taking the time to consider the intended purpose, environment, and style of photography can help you make a more informed decision and choose the Nikon Z Series camera that best suits your individual needs.

Lens compatibility

It’s important to consider lens compatibility when purchasing a Nikon Z series camera because these cameras use a new lens mount called the Z mount, which is different from the traditional F mount used on previous Nikon DSLR cameras. While adapters are available to use F-mount lenses on Z series cameras, they may not be ideal for all situations and may limit the benefits of the new Z mount system. Additionally, not all F-mount lenses are fully compatible with Z series cameras, particularly older models that lack autofocus or other advanced features.

By choosing lenses specifically designed for the Z mount, photographers can take full advantage of the benefits of this new system, including faster and more accurate autofocus, improved image quality, and better compatibility with new firmware updates and advanced features. Considering lens compatibility before purchasing a Nikon Z series camera can help ensure that you get the most out of your investment and are able to capture the highest quality images possible.

Sensor size

Sensor size is an important factor to consider before investing in Nikon Z series cameras. The Z series offers two sensor sizes; the full-frame (FX) sensor and the APS-C (DX) sensor. The full-frame sensor is larger, enabling it to capture more light and detail. It also provides a shallower depth of field, making it ideal for portrait and landscape photography. On the other hand, the APS-C sensor is smaller, making the camera more compact and lighter, but with a reduced resolution. It is suitable for amateurs and enthusiasts who need a more affordable option for their photography needs.

In conclusion, the choice of sensor size will depend on your photography needs, budget, and preferences. The Nikon Z series offers both options, giving you the freedom to decide which one serves your purpose best. If you are professional and capturing high-quality images is paramount, the FX sensor is the preferred option. However, if you are on a budget or an enthusiast who values portability and flexibility, the DX sensor is your best bet.

Autofocus capabilities

Autofocus capabilities are a crucial factor to consider before buying any camera, including the Nikon Z series. The Z series boasts some of the most advanced autofocus systems in the market, including hybrid autofocus (AF) systems that combine phase- and contrast-detection technologies. This enables fast and accurate focusing, even in low-light conditions and with moving subjects. Additionally, the Z series cameras feature improved face-detection autofocus and eye-detection autofocus, making them a great choice for portrait photography. Thus, considering the autofocus capabilities of Nikon Z series cameras is essential to ensure that you get the best possible results from your photography.

In conclusion, with the advanced autofocus capabilities of the Nikon Z series cameras, users can achieve fast and accurate focusing for every shot, making them suitable for both amateur and professional photographers. The cameras’ focus systems provide reliable and precise autofocus that ensures sharp imagery, even in low-light and challenging settings. Therefore, before buying a Nikon Z series camera, making sure that its autofocus capabilities meet your photography needs is necessary.

Battery life

Battery life is a crucial aspect to consider before investing in any camera, including the Nikon Z Series Cameras. The battery life impacts the amount of time photographers can shoot without having to change the battery or recharge it. Nikon Z Series Cameras offer different battery options, including the EN-EL15b which gives a battery life of approximately 330 shots or the EN-EL15c that provides a battery life of about 340 shots.

Factors such as the shooting mode, video recording, and environmental conditions can impact the battery life. Therefore, it is important to consider the battery options before buying a Nikon Z Series Camera to ensure that the battery life will meet your specific needs and shooting style. Choosing a camera with a longer battery life will guarantee you take photographs without interruptions and give you peace of mind when shooting on the go.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between Nikon Z6 and Z7 cameras?

The Nikon Z6 and Z7 are mirrorless cameras with similar designs and features, but with some key differences. The Z6 has a 24.5-megapixel sensor and can shoot up to 12 frames per second, while the Z7 has a 45.7-megapixel sensor and shoots up to 9 frames per second.

The Z6 has a broader ISO range of 100-51,200, expandable up to 204,800, while the Z7 has an ISO range of 64-25,600, expandable up to 102,400. The Z7 has more autofocus points (493) compared to the Z6 (273), but the Z6 has more phase detection autofocus points (273) compared to the Z7 (77). Additionally, the Z7 has a higher resolution electronic viewfinder and a slightly larger body compared to the Z6. Overall, the Z7 is designed for high-resolution image capture while the Z6 is more versatile for various shooting situations.

Can I use my old Nikon lenses with the Z series cameras?

Yes, you can use old Nikon lenses with the Z series cameras. Nikon’s FTZ mount adapter allows the use of over 90 F-mount Nikkor lenses, as well as approximately 360 lenses from other manufacturers with an F-mount. The adapter provides full compatibility with automatic metering, autofocus, and VR image stabilization for F-mount Nikkor lenses that lack an aperture ring and that feature an autofocus motor. The resulting image quality is comparable to that achieved with a DSLR camera. However, some limitations may still apply, such as the inability to use certain features or access some settings with some lenses.

Does the Nikon Z series have in-camera stabilization?

Yes, the Nikon Z series features in-camera stabilization. The Z6 and Z7 models have Nikon’s 5-axis sensor-shift vibration reduction (VR) system that compensates for camera shake and allows for up to 5 stops of stabilization. This is particularly useful when shooting in low light or when using longer focal lengths. Additionally, the Z6 II and Z7 II models have an upgraded version called the Dual-VR II system, which combines the sensor-shift VR with electronic VR for even more stabilization.

Final Thoughts

To sum up, the Nikon Z series cameras are undoubtedly one of the best options for photography enthusiasts. From entry-level to top-end models, the Z series offers a diverse range of features that cater to different skill levels. Choosing the best Nikon Z series camera ultimately depends on your budget, preferences, and intended use, but it’s safe to say that any of the cameras mentioned in this article would make a great investment for capturing stunning shots. Hence, if you’re looking for the best Nikon Z series cameras, this guide should help you make an informed decision.

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