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Nikon Z6 vs Sony A7 III – The 10 Main Differences

Nikon Z6 vs Sony A7 III – The 10 Main Differences


Sony has grow to be a reference on each the mirrorless market and the digital digital camera market as an entire because of the rise of the A7 collection. Only recently the corporate turned primary on the US full-frame market, which is a transparent signal that the DSLR competitors is falling behind.

Sony was additionally the one mirrorless model to embrace the 35mm format up till now, if we exclude Leica whose SL and M techniques are far more of a distinct segment phase.

The first actual response to Sony’s A7 line-up comes from Nikon within the form of the Z6 and Z7, the corporate’s first full-frame mirrorless cameras. Nikon’s determination to launch two identical-looking our bodies as an alternative of 1 was probably impressed by Sony whose A7 III and A7r III fashions share the identical design and quite a few options however home a unique sensor.

nikon z7 vs sony a7 iii

On this article, we’re going to try the ten essential distinction between the favored A7 III mannequin and the brand new Z6 whose decision and worth level make it a direct competitor. However first, a fast record of what the 2 cameras have in widespread:

  • 35mm format sensor
  • BSI (Again-illuminated) sensor
  • 24MP of decision (24.5 for the Z6, 24.2 for the A7 III)
  • ISO 100-51200 (pull 50, push as much as 204800)
  • 5 axis on-sensor stabilisation with 5.0Ev of compensation (CIPA normal)
  • first digital curtain and digital/silent shutter
  • 4K video recording as much as 30fps and 100 Mbps with full pixel readout in full body mode
  • 120fps in 1080p with in-camera sluggish movement capabilities
  • Wifi and Bluetooth
  • Mic enter, headphone output, USB C port, HDMI (Mini Sort C on the Z6, Micro Sort D on the A7)

1. Mount and lenses

It’s not shocking to discover a totally different mount on every digital camera since we’re speaking about two totally different techniques designed by two totally different corporations. Nevertheless the rationale I’m beginning with this matter is as a result of there’s a vital distinction within the dimensions. Actually the brand new super-sized Z mount is the first purpose Nikon determined to supply a brand new mirrorless system within the first place.

Word: the image exhibits the Z7, which has an similar form and dimensions to the Z6.

As you’ll be able to see from the image, the circle is bigger on the Z6/Z7 our bodies with a diameter of 55mm versus 46mm on the Sony E-mount. The flange distance (sensor to mounting flange) is 2mm shorter on the Z digital camera as properly (16mm vs 18mm).

Nikon defined that the brand new mount will permit them to design a brand new era of lenses with superior optical efficiency together with a Noct 58mm f/zero.95. Sadly we weren’t allowed to convey house pattern photographs from the occasion. The press workforce confirmed us the nook sharpness of a picture taken with the Z 35mm lens at f/1.Eight (quickest aperture) and the extent of element was certainly spectacular. In fact we have now but to see for ourselves how these new lenses behave.

The lenses designed by Sony and Zeiss up to now haven’t disenchanted, so what I’m actually curious to know is how Nikon plans to push optical efficiency to a brand new degree and to what diploma this benefit will influence actual world use. I’m additionally fascinated by seeing if Nikon will have the ability to maintain the dimensions of the lenses extra compact. The Z 24-70mm f/four is surprisingly small, whereas the 50mm f/1.Eight is bigger than the Sony equal. My guess is that it’ll range from lens to lens and every particular person optical design.

Curiously although, Nikon has additionally unveiled a 500mm f/5.6 DSLR telephoto which is admittedly small for this kind of lens. If Nikon is growing its know-how on find out how to design smaller lenses with out impacting the standard, then the Z system might definitely develop into very fascinating certainly.

The Z6 with the Nikkor 500mm f5.6 and FTZ adapter

The Z system debuts with three lenses, which is a greater begin when it comes to versatility than what Sony managed in 2013. The package lens is a 24-70mm f/four and we even have a 35mm f/1.Eight and 50mm f/1.Eight. The Noct zero.95 and 5 further lenses (20mm f/1.Eight, 85mm f/1.Eight, 24-70mm f/2.Eight, 70-200mm f/2.Eight and 14-30mm f/four) will arrive in 2019 and extra are due in 2020 together with a 50mm f/1.2, 24mm f/1.Eight and 12-24mm f/2.Eight.

Sony has labored arduous on its lens line-up over the previous 5 years so logically it has the benefit of a extra full catalogue of native lenses, in addition to help from third-party producers resembling Zeiss, Samyang, Tamron and Sigma. Numerous adapters broaden the choice to many DSLR lenses from Canon, Sony and Nikon itself.

It’s attainable that third-party manufacturers reminiscent of Sigma and Tamron will be a part of the Z-mount since they’re already producing many lenses for the Nikon DSLR system. That being stated, in accordance with DPreview, Nikon gained’t share the technical particulars of the Z mount so any model should reverse-engineer it. As for the native optics, Nikon will clearly require a number of years to construct a suitable vary. For now, the optionally available FTZ adapter will provide you with full compatibility with 93 Nikkor lenses or greater than 300 with partial performance. The temporary time I spent with this adapter left me with a constructive impression. The Z6 was reactive and quick at locking onto the topic with little or no hesitation or forwards and backwards actions.

The FTZ adapter

2. Design and entrance grip

The criticism that I and lots of others have identified time and time once more concerning the A7 III and its siblings is the small grip, which is ok with compact lenses however not snug sufficient with giant lenses such because the 24-70mm f/2.Eight or the 100-400mm GM.

There are answers out there resembling a grip extender (examine our accent listing) however I’ve all the time thought that by including a couple of millimetres right here and there, the digital camera might be extra snug straight out of the field.

Nikon has proved this concept proper. The Z6 is just not lots bigger than the A7 mark III, but by including a bulkier and bigger entrance grip, your hand and fingers relaxation rather more comfortably.

The distinction in weight isn’t large both, with the A7 III being simply 25g lighter (650g vs 675g for the Z6).

When it comes to ease of use, there are some things concerning the Z6 I already like. First the nonetheless/video mode change on the rear is far nicer to make use of than turning the primary mode dial on prime. The buttons are bigger with a pleasant tactile really feel and I recognize the 2 Fn buttons on the entrance close to the mount. One other cool function is that the brand new Z lenses include a perform ring that may be customised to vary the aperture, guide focus or publicity compensation. The focus joystick additionally felt a bit extra reactive though I’m nitpicking right here.

Each cameras include a great variety of perform buttons, in addition to customized modes, a personalised menu web page and a fast menu that may be edited. I’ve but to develop into conversant in all the chances the Z6 has to supply, but when there’s one constructive I can say concerning the A7 III, it’s that it provides a plenty of room for customisation on many fronts. So even when the digital camera really feel unintuitive at first, when you’ve configured to your liking, the consumer expertise improves significantly.

three. Reminiscence card slots and sort

There’s one design selection that stunned everyone on these new mirrorless cameras: Nikon has opted for one single XQD suitable slot. That is fairly a departure from the usual SD slots we’ve seen on most mirrorless cameras, but in addition a step again after years of demand for high-end mirrorless cameras with two card slots.

In actuality the selection regarding the kind of card shouldn’t come as an excessive amount of of a shock since Nikon has been utilizing this commonplace on different DSLRs, however it’s a disgrace they didn’t discover the area so as to add a second slot, even when it was simply the smaller SD sort.

The A7 III then again accepts two SD playing cards, with the primary slot being UHS-II compliant.

On paper, the XQD normal gives quicker writing and studying speeds so I’ll be curious to see how a lot this could influence the efficiency of the 2 cameras when recording video or capturing in steady mode. That being stated, SD playing cards have improved rather a lot, so I can’t assist however assume that this transfer from Nikon is just not probably the most clever one.

four. Screens and contact display operation

Persevering with with the design, we will see that the Z6 has a prime monochrome OLED display that shows the settings in use. Just like Nikon’s high-end DSLRs, this can be a function that has been carried out on different mirrorless cameras these days such because the Panasonic G9 and Fujifilm X-H1, however has but to return to a Sony mannequin.

Then we’ve got the rear monitor, which is bigger on the Z6 (three.2 inches vs three.zero inches) and with extra decision (2,100okay dots vs 922okay dots). The contact operations are extra full on the Nikon digital camera: along with with the ability to transfer the AF level, you possibly can take a shot, navigate the menu and alter settings.

On the A7 III, you’ll be able to solely use it for the AF space however in contrast to the Nikon, it additionally permits you to use the display as an AF pad when composing with the EVF.

5. Digital viewfinder

The EVF on the Z6 left me with a really constructive first impression. It has a superb decision because of the three,690okay dot OLED panel and a big magnification of zero.8x.

The A7 III has much less decision (2,360okay dots) and a barely decrease magnification of zero.78x however the eyepoint is somewhat longer (23mm vs 21mm).

They each share a refresh fee of roughly 60fps.

6. Picture high quality tidbits

As talked about within the introduction, each cameras function the identical format and roughly the identical megapixel rely. Nevertheless we discover a couple of fascinating variations. First, the Z6 lacks an AA filter in contrast to the A7 III, so these fascinated with having the utmost sharpness output could be happy with Nikon on this regard.

Then we have now the file recording system. The Z6 can save RAW in 12 or 14-bit with a selection of uncompressed, lossless compressed or compressed choices. There’s in fact JPG on each cameras with a selection of primary, regular and superb however the A7 III will get an Additional High-quality compression. Lastly, the Z6 can even document in Tiff.

7. Autofocus

The Z6 includes a hybrid autofocus system with 273 part detection factors organised throughout 90% of the sensor. It has a minimal sensitivity of -4Ev with an f/2 lens.

The A7 III has 693 part detection factors and 425 distinction detection factors that cowl 93% of the chip floor. The minimal sensitivity is -3Ev with an f/2 lens.

Z6: 273 part detection factors

A7 III: 693 part detection factors

The Sony’s autofocus system is predicated on that of the flagship A9, which is presently the most effective we’ve examined amongst mirrorless cameras and we discover the A7 III’s efficiency to be fairly shut, even for sports activities and wildlife. Face detection and Eye AF work rather well too and the latter particularly is now a reference within the business.

My temporary hands-on with the Z6 on the press occasion left me with a constructive impression: the AF was fast and reactive, even when utilizing the FTZ adapter and DSLR lenses. Face detection didn’t all the time work correctly nevertheless. Even when activated the digital camera typically did not recognise a face. That being stated, I didn’t have time to dig into all of the settings so I’ll draw my remaining conclusions at one other time.

Eight. Steady capturing velocity and buffer

The Z6 can shoot at a most of 12fps (publicity is locked on the primary body). If you need reside view with blackouts, you might want to scale back the velocity to five.5fps.

The A7 III can do 10fps with AE monitoring, and exhibits you reside view with blackouts as much as 8fps.

Nikon hasn’t unveiled any official knowledge in regards to the buffer capabilities, however it’s protected to say that what I noticed on the launch occasion didn’t impress me. The digital camera slowed down shortly after a number of seconds even when capturing simply JPGs. That stated, I’ll reserve my last judgement for once I’ve finished all the right testing.

The A7 III definitely does very nicely when it comes to buffer depth, being able to capturing compressed RAW at 8fps for greater than 30 seconds, or shoot for a vast time in JPG mode.

9. Video high quality tidbits

The Z6 definitely has fascinating video capabilities however solely the A7 III has a set of devoted Image Profiles designed for film recording. They assist you to change skilled settings corresponding to black pedestal or knee amongst different issues. You can even choose totally different curves and color modes, and you’ve got the selection of S-Log2 and S-Log3 which can be found for inner recording, in addition to an HLG profile.

The Z6 permits you to configure the identical profiles used for stills. There’s an N-Log mode that’s out there by way of HDMI. The port permits you to output 10-bit to an exterior recorder, whereas the A7 III solely has an Eight-bit output.

5 axis stabilisation works for video too and there’s additionally the choice of including software program stabilisation, which produces a slight 1.1x crop.

10. Battery life

Nikon charges the Z6 at 310 photographs on a single cost by CIPA requirements. In fact we should always be capable of handle extra in the actual world, however nonetheless this score is lower than half of what the A7 III can do (710 pictures).

Our expertise with the Sony digital camera has proven that the A7 III is definitely probably the greatest mirrorless cameras relating to battery life, performing equally to many DSLRs. From the look of it, the Z6 in all probability gained’t have the ability to ship the identical efficiency.

Each cameras may be charged over USB however solely the Z6 is provided with a separate charger.


The Z6 is nearly every thing we have been anticipating from Nikon, minus that sudden function or “wow” issue that would have made its announcement much more thrilling. Truly we ended up with two unfavorable surprises: the shortage of a double reminiscence card slot and the brief battery life. That being stated, I loved the time I spent with the digital camera.

The ergonomics look actually promising and the couple of hours I spent with it left me with a constructive impression: the grip is good, the digital camera feels strong and it’s simple to make use of. There are undoubtedly a few benefits over the A7 III beginning with the grip, however I’m not saying something that hasn’t already been stated elsewhere.

Extra in-depth checks will reveal how a lot of a distinction there’s when it comes to picture high quality provided that the decision is identical and each cameras use a BSI construction. In fact I’m extra curious concerning the autofocus efficiency and whether or not the distinction within the variety of focus factors can influence the outcomes – and if Nikon’s face detection is almost nearly as good as Sony’s face/eye AF. I’ll be additionally curious to place the video high quality via its paces. The A7 vary is a reference for video however the specs of the Z6 look promising, though it’s a disgrace that video-oriented profiles akin to N-Log are solely obtainable by way of the HDMI port.

Lastly, we’ve the worth which is analogous for each merchandise. The Z6 could be ordered for $2000 / £2099 / €2399 whereas the A7 III might be discovered for $2000 / £2000 / €2300.

(mirrorlesscomparison.com, http://bit.ly/2PqN3xu)


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