The Nikon Z7 exceeded our expectations and then some. Now it's time to find out if the Nikon Z6 is an amazing all-rounder. Michael Topham puts one of the first samples in the UK to the test
Nikon Z6 Review: Verdict
Nikon, much like Canon, has been late to join the full frame mirrorless market. With Sony being at the forefront of driving this segment forward over the last few years, and more and more photographers being tempted to make the switch to smaller and lighter A7-series cameras, there’s been mounting pressure on Nikon to step up and deliver an answer.
After reviewing the Nikon Z 7 and now the Z 6, it’s clear that Nikon has thrown absolutely everything into making the finest mirrorless cameras it can. The manufacturer is clearly no longer concerned about protecting its DSLRs having overcome the hurdle of allowing existing Nikon owners to make good use of their F-mount lenses via the FTZ mount adapter.
With the Z 6, Nikon has made its best general purpose, full frame camera ever. When I reviewed the Sony A7 III earlier this year, I didn’t think any camera would be able to get close to what it offered for the money, but Nikon has somehow managed to pull out all the stops and do just that. The Sony A7 III has advantages of its own – it provides dual card slots for backup and offers class-leading AF tracking with Eye AF. Overall though, the Nikon Z 6 feels the more accomplished camera and a lot of this comes down to its sensational handling and robust build quality that is quite clearly in a league above what Sony offer at present.
Nikon DSLR users will be bowled over by the viewing experience of the large electronic viewfinder and how well the touchscreen integrates with the menu – another two areas where the Z 6 has advantages over the A7 III. Needless to say, with a budget of around £2000, the Z 6 at just £100 more than the Sony A7 III (or £200 with the FTZ mount adapter included) is what we consider to be the best full frame mirrorless camera you can buy at this price point right now.
While the Z 6 might have arrived too late for those who’ve sold their F-mount lenses and jumped ship from Nikon to another system, it’s just what many loyal Nikon users who’d like to make the transition from DSLR to mirrorless have long been waiting for. It’s not perfect in every way and hopefully we’ll see Nikon squeeze a second SD card slot alongside the XQD card slot in the future, but overall the Z 6 is an astonishingly impressive camera for the money and is the full-frame camera to go for if you don’t require the Nikon Z 7’s super high resolution output.
It was one thing for Nikon to outdo Sony’s A7R III with the magnificent Z 7, but to do the double and create the Z 6, which with all things considered is a better camera than the Sony A7 III, is quite a remarkable achievement. We take our hats off to Nikon, it’s entered the full frame mirrorless market with quite a statement!