Nikon releases the Z 8 full-frame mirrorless camera

Nikon Z 8 with accessory mics

Nikon Corp. announced the release of the full-frame/FX-format Nikon Z 8 mirrorless camera.

The Z 8 condenses the advanced functionality and performance of the flagship Nikon Z 9 into a compact and lightweight body while also maintaining superior robustness and reliability, the company said. The camera is suited for a variety of image creators who seek new possibilities for visual expression in a wide range of genres and subjects, such as landscapes, wild birds, airplanes, portraits, and weddings.

The advanced functionality and performance of the Z 9 are incorporated into a compact camera body that is approximately 30% smaller than the flagship model. The downsized body has been engineered to retain the easy-to-hold grip as well as comfortable operability, the company said. In addition, the 4-axis tilting monitor delivers high operability when shooting from high and low angles in both horizontal and vertical positions.

For video recording, the Z 8 can record 12-bit RAW and 10-bit Apple ProRes 422 HQ video in-camera. The Z 8 can record up to approximately 125 minutes in 4K UHD/60p and up to 90 minutes in 8K UHD/30p, which is a great benefit for a wide range of shooting situations, such as for documentaries or wedding shooting, where extended recording time is required. The same nine types of subjects are detected in stills and video as the Z 9, while also featuring a new dedicated airplane detection mode.

For still shooting, the Z 8 features Pre-Release Capture, which allows the capture of images up to one second before the shutter-release button is fully pressed. For example, when shooting wild birds, the exact moment a bird suddenly takes flight can be captured while only half-pressing the button — even if the user only fully pressed the shutter-release button after the bird took off.

The Z 8 supports the HEIF format, which records high-quality still images while reducing the amount of file data. This file format enables the impressive expression of scenes that have rich tones, such as sunrises and sunsets, as well as scenes that feature highly illuminated subjects, such as nighttime parades, by utilizing 10-bit rich tonal gradation, according to Nikon. In addition, when shooting HEIF images (via live view) or playing the images back, the user can get a good idea of how those images will look on an HDR (HLG)-compatible monitor with the camera’s 3000cd/m2 compatible EVF and 900cd/m2 high-luminance image monitor.

The Z 8 can record in various types of video formats depending on the purposes or workflow of the shoot, including high-definition 4K UHD/60p, 50p, and 30p oversampled from 8K, providing the opportunity to shoot in high-definition video that can be enjoyed on a large screen.

  • 45.7 effective megapixels deliver outstanding resolution maximizing the superior performance of NIKKOR Z lenses.
  • Real-Live Viewfinder continuously displays the actual motion of a subject without blackout or skipped/repeated frames.
  • 3D-tracking keeps the target subject in focus even if it moves rapidly or erratically.
  • Custom wide-area AF supports various autofocus area patterns.
  • Synchro VR achieves powerful vibration reduction up to approximately 6.0 stops
  • Supportive functions for shooting in dark locations, such as starlight view and illuminated buttons are equipped.
  • Vertical-orientation playback of images/display of the i menu during playback efficiently supports vertical shooting.
  • Hi-Res Zoom allows zooming in high definition during video recording — even when using a prime lens.
  • Timecode synchronization facilitates the operation of synchronizing video footage from multiple cameras and audio data from audio recorders, which is immensely beneficial for video editing.
  • Durability for operation in freezing conditions down to -10°C/14°F supports professional shooting in extreme environments.
  • Elimination of the mechanical shutter enables shooting without worrying about shutter wear.
  • Double coating and a sensor shield are adopted to protect the image sensor from dust.
  • Two USB terminals, one for power charge/supply and the other for communication, allow communication while charging/supplying power.
  • Adoption of magnesium alloy and a new professional-grade carbon-fiber composite material realizes superior robustness and reliability.