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What is It? This is probably going to be a different sounding review than you expected. I’ll get into my normal “full” review style in a bit, but first we have a ginormous elephant in the room to deal with: just how different is a Z6 II from the Z6, and might that actually be important?

That seems like a long list, right? The question a lot of folk will have is how much does that actually translate to in terms of tangible and meaningful differences? You’ll note, for example, Nikon tweaked or removed some options.

I have no idea why Nikon leaves off or changes features— aspect ratio and TIFF on the Z6 II for example—but it’s annoying, and sometimes breaks people’s workflows. I suspect that part of the problem is that Nikon has a fixed size for firmware, and that as they add new things into firmware, they sometimes need the space, so they take something else out, or tweak it in ways that use less firmware memory. The question that most of you might ask is this: are the changes worth it?

My answer is no and yes, in that order. I don’t find myself particularly appreciating or using in many cases many of those changes. They fall into a category I’d call “okay nice, but doesn’t change things for me. The yes part of my answer has to do with only three things, so I’d suggest that if they don’t interest you much, just go read my Z6 review and consider that version of the camera.

What are those three items? Now it’s possible that the dual slots or vertical grip option answers a question for you personally, but the former adds complications to the camera, and the latter adds an additional cost. So, that’s probably the short answer for many of you reading this review.

Now let’s get to the full review. There’s more the same about those cameras than there is different. The Z6 II is a 24mp full frame 36x24mm mirrorless camera.

The image sensor itself is the same as in the Z6, and appears to be similar to the one used in the Sony A7m3. Base ISO is , with the directly selectable range going to 25, extendable with the HI settings to , equivalent. The Z6 II sensor measures slightly different than the Z6 sensor in one thing: fixed pattern noise. It appears that Nikon caught their mistake with the focus pixel rows and corrected their math.

All other measurements I made came up identical within sample error. This filter steals a little acuity from edges and anti-aliases the data, but that also has the tendency to mask some of the shot noise, too. Note that the aliasing is mostly on the long axis. It’s not clear why Nikon made the aliasing asymmetrical, but the overall result is less overall aliasing than most regular AA filters.

The Z mount the Z6 II uses is distinguished by the smallest flange distance to date from the main competitors 16mm compared to a more typical mm. Coupled with a very wide throat opening of 52mm compared to Sony’s narrow They can also consider new optical designs where the entrance and exit pupils of the optical path have more flexibility.

Zoom and focus rings also work the same way in Z-dom as they do in D-dom: zoom in with a twist to the right across the top of the lens , zoom out to the left.

So, other than the fact that the mount is bigger and closer to the sensor, the Z6 II lens mount and lens attributes are recognizably Nikon to Nikon users. Another article on this site goes into the details about the FTZ adapter , so I won’t elaborate much here. That’s good news, because while the Z-mount lens choices continue to get better, we only have 14 FX Z-mount Nikkor lenses as this review is published, and a number of them overlap in function four mid-range zooms, for example.

Even with more lenses on the Road Map and coming soon, there’s still a paucity of lens choice in the Z-mount versus the F-mount that will take some time to go away. The exception with FTZ Adapter is D-type autofocus lenses that use a screw-drive mechanism to move the focus elements. Moreover, screw-drive autofocus lenses were the poorest in terms of focus speed only the D3, D4, D5, and D6 type bodies had high-powered motors that could drive them fast, and the batteries to allow that.

You’re probably wondering about the autofocus system at this point, as I just mentioned that most F-mount lenses work as expected on the Z6 II with the FTZ adapter. Nikon uses rows of phase detect photosite masking on the Z6 II sensor. The photosites on those rows can provide both focus and exposure information. Basically every twelfth row has this dual-function nature. Nikon claims points for autofocus, but that’s user selectable single points using the camera controls.

In reality, there are thousands of autofocus points in the camera, as is true of most mirrorless cameras using phase detect on sensor. One thing, though: none of these autofocus detection sites are cross-type, as you find in the DSLRs. That means that focus is more responsive to detail on one axis only long axis.

That’s with the low light focus function enabled; normally it’s Indeed, I’d call them state-of-the-art numbers. The thing about phase detect on the image sensor is that the precision with which the current focus position can be calculated is less than that in the DSLRs at least at the central positions. That mostly has to do with geometry. That’s why virtually all of mirrorless camera systems default to a followup contrast detect focus step after performing a phase detect step when they’re set to what’s known as single servo focus AF-S in most cameras; it means that focus is only obtained once, and does not track the subject.

Somehow, Nikon has gotten the same level of accuracy without having to perform the extra step. Note that whatever Autofocus Area Mode you pick in AF-C, far more than one underlying focus sensor pixel is being used to determine focus.

That both helps and potentially hurts AF-C focus accuracy. I’ll get to accuracy in the Performance section, below. Beyond that, you need to invoke a programmed button or pull off the trick I note in my book to see exact DOF in the viewfinder.

They needn’t have worried. Phase detect is essentially instant—okay, there’s lag in the electronics stream to account for, but that’s minimal—so it really depends upon the performance of the focus motor in the lens as to whether the actual focus speed is good or not.

The worry among DSLR users was that no other mirrorless camera with adapter managed to achieve reasonable focus speed with existing F-mount Nikkors. One thing to note is that the Z cameras don’t have to filter light through a partially silvered mirror before it gets to the focus sensors. That means those focus sensors are getting considerably more light on them, which impacts accuracy.

There are also more individual sensors building the depth map for any given “focus area” the camera is looking at. I see no important difference in how AF-S lenses on the FTZ adapter work yeah, a confusion of terms, that’s not single servo, but a lens motor designation , though in a few cases I can measure it as slower than the same lens on my D6. I actually think AF-P lenses may work a little faster on the Z6 II than they do on the DSLRs, but that “little” is so little that I can’t really measure it, and you have an apples and oranges problem to deal with even trying to do such a test.

Meanwhile, manual focus lenses on the Z6 II shine. That’s because we have a plethora of “helpers” to help you nail focus. Non-chipped lenses will lose the rangefinder and perhaps more depending upon how you’ve set the camera, but are still quite usable on the Z6 II.

Even though I’m just outlining features, I’ll say this right up front: if you’re deep into using manual focus Nikkors that are chipped basically AI-P and some third party lenses , the Z6 II is the second best camera you can use them on the Z7 II is the best, because of the added resolution. No doubts about it. The chipped Voigtlander and Zeiss ZF. You’re simply going to get to correct focus visually faster and more accurately with your lens on the Z6 II via FTZ adapter than you will with any other camera mounting those lenses.

I’d even include the Fujifilm X and Sony A7 series in that statement. I’m surprised and thrilled at how much compatibility Nikon has managed to retain while moving over into the mirrorless realm from DSLR.

Unfortunately, if you have a screw-drive autofocus Nikkor—lenses that require a motor in the camera body to move the focus elements in the lens—you will lose autofocus if you mount it on the FTZ Adapter. It’s entirely possible that someone, including Nikon, might eventually build an adapter that works for all those older screw-mount autofocus lenses, but I wouldn’t hold my breath.

That has power implications, among other things. One new thing with the Z6 II is when you’ve got an AC power source that supports USB Power Delivery plugged into the camera, you can operate the camera from that source a battery with some charge still needs to be in the camera, though. I use my Z6 II as a continuously on Webcam using this facility.

I glossed over a feature in the sensor description, above: on-sensor VR. The Z6 II has on-sensor stabilization. Not all is perfect with that on-sensor VR, though.

First, with video Nikon is claiming only a 2-stop improvement at the sensor, which can be improved to 5-stops via turning on an additional feature, Electronic VR only works with video, as it moves the scan area.

The other thing you need to be aware of is that if a Nikkor lens has VR and a switch to control that, that switch controls all VR, in the lens or on the sensor. Third party lenses with stabilization, especially older ones, may not correctly interface with the camera’s VR, though.

I’ve seen several where the lens switch doesn’t seem to be recognized by the camera, and others that stay powered even when the viewfinder is off. It doesn’t end there. In one of the biggest design dissonances in the DSLR to mirrorless transition, the type of VR is controlled by the lens, unless it isn’t. If the lens has Off, On, and Sports modes in its switch, great, everything matches, and that lens switch does indeed sets Off, On, and Sports modes.

But if the lens has Off, On, and Active modes on its switch, oops. The switch only controls On and Off: Active mode will be the same as On. This, of course, is a simplification. First up is the removal of the Mode button and the inclusion of a locking Mode dial. One problem with that is that not all functions are actually saved in U1, U2, and U3. One primary one that isn’t remembered: the drive function self-timer, single shot, continuous shot, etc.

Meanwhile, while you can save your camera configuration to your memory card, you can only do that once on a card; Nikon still doesn’t support multiple, named settings files. This was one of the things that Nikon eventually addressed with extended banks in the pro cameras having a user-defined exposure mode associated with a bank that can be overridden while shooting.

While most shooters won’t be upset by the simplifications inherent in the U1 type settings over banks, we do lose flexibility in the camera with this design. But it is what it is, and so we have the two mixed slots.

Two slots means that the full set of Nikon second slot card uses is available, including a new playback option. Shutter lag is technically 65ms the D, for example, maxes out at 45ms.


Tethered shooting with nikon camera control pro 2 free.Nikon D7000

If you’re a Nikon shooter, you need Camera Control Pro 2, which sells for $ at B&H, but you can download a fully working trial-version for I would like to shoot tethered using a Mac and a Nikon D I find Nikon Camera Control Pro 2 too expensive and for some reason in. Nikon DSLR owners who want to control their cameras from their PCs Free Nikon DSLR Tethering Software for PCs, Tablets and Smartphones.


Tethered shooting with nikon camera control pro 2 free.Smart Shooter 4

This software remotely controls most functions of Nikon digital camera from a computer that is connected via USB cable or through wired or wireless LAN using a. Camera Control Pro 2 can be used to control cameras connected via interface cables or (with wireless transmitters such as the WT-4, WT-5, WT-6, and WT-7) in a.


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