Home Camera Nikon Z 50 – the DX-format to fill their mirrorless system gap

Nikon Z 50 – the DX-format to fill their mirrorless system gap


There’s always a beginning for everything, although a little late, but never too late. Today, Nikon has finally put forth its APS-C mirrorless camera, the Z 50 to fill its gap in that segment.

Nikon Z 50 with Z 35mm F1.8

This is the first mirrorless camera in their APS-C format, to sit alongside with their competitor like the Canon’s EOS M series, the Sony A 6000/5000 series and the Fujifilm series. It’s never too later to wake up from its ZZZ and we may see some exciting competition heating up soon with more rumours and announcements from others to come up soon for the year-end spending rush. Now, let’s take a quick tour to know some important features of the Nikon Z 50.

Z 50 inherits its design and operability, reliability, and future possibilities as a mirrorless system from the Nikon Z 7 and Nikon Z 6, with improved on characteristics and shrinking them into a compact, lightweight, and durable body. It is equipped with the Z mount, which is compatible with both the NIKKOR Z DX and NIKKOR Z FX lenses, ensuring support for all NIKKOR Z lenses and allowing users to enjoy great variety in imaging expression.

Nikon Z 50 EXPEED processor

The Z 50 has an effective pixel count of 20.9 megapixels, and is the first Nikon DX-format camera to be equipped with a CMOS sensor that incorporates focal-plane phase-detection AF pixels. The EXPEED 6 image-processing engine works with the Nikon DX-format CMOS sensor to achieve ISO 51200. It also equipped with features such as mid-range sharpening and quick sharp for Picture Controls, allowing users to enjoy the same imaging options available with the Z 7 and Z 6. With the state-of-the-art processor, it is possible to enable 20 Creative Picture Controls and Special Effect modes that allow users to produce unique images with options such as Photo illustration and Toy Camera Effect.

Nikon Z 50 sense view

Despite the compact and lightweight body, the camera is easy to operate, with a grip that is formed for a comfortable and secure hold, and all operational buttons and controls positioned for right-handed operation. The shutter-release button is arranged such that the user needs simply to extend their index finger for natural operation. Further compactness is achieved when the camera is used with NIKKOR Z DX lenses which was announced at the same time.

Nikon Z 50 back view

The 209 focus points cover approximately 87% of the imaging area horizontally, and approximately 85% vertically. The hybrid AF system uses an algorithm optimized for the DX-format sensor and focuses by automatically switching between focal-plane phase-detection AF and contrast-detect AF. The Z 50 is equipped with eye-detection AF, Eye-detection AF can also be used when NIKKOR F lenses are attached using the FTZ Mount Adapter. The AF system is able to focus better in the low light situation, it claims to go as low as -4 EV. The autofocus and auto-exposure continue to function with high-speed continuous shooting at approximately 11 fps.

Nikon Z 50 top view

The Z 50 is equipped with a 3.2-inch, with 1040k-dot tilting TFT touch-sensitive LCD monitor. It also offers a new function button for zoom in, zoom out, and help on the touch panel. The electronic viewfinder (2.36mil pixels) reflects the same operations as the camera monitor, allowing users to adjust a variety of camera settings without taking their eye away from the viewfinder. The “i” button and “i” menu have made photography more enjoyable, it allows users to quickly adjust a variety of settings with the press of a button without accessing camera menus and changes reflect on screen and EVF too.

The Z 50 is equipped with a tilting monitor that can be adjusted through a broad range of angles, enabling the recording of selfies as still images or videos. When Self-portrait mode is enabled, operational controls and buttons other than the shutter-release button, including the multi selector, are locked to prevent accidental misoperation and allow for a firm grip on the camera.

Nikon Z 50 with Z 50mm F1.8 Lens

The Z 50 supports the recording of DX-format based full-frame 4K UHD movies, allowing users to enjoy high-quality videos with a sharper look. In addition, Creative Picture Controls can be applied with movie recording to suit the user’s preferences or creative intent. The camera is equipped with a variety of movie-recording functions, including a slow-motion movie function and a time-lapse movie function that generates 4K UHD and Full HD time-lapse movies in-camera.

As this is a Z system, naturally, the Z mount supports both the NIKKOR Z DX and NIKKOR Z FX formats, so all NIKKOR Z lenses, including the NIKKOR Z DX 16-50mm f/3.5-6.3 VR and NIKKOR Z DX 50-250mm f/4.5-6.3 VR lenses released at the same time, as well as the S-Line lenses which can be used with the Z 50. With the FTZ Mount Adapter, the Z 50 expands to approximately 360 NIKKOR F lenses.

Nikon Z 50 with FTZ mount adapter to access the rest of Nikkor lenses family

The Z 50 is also compatible with the SnapBridge app, which can be used to immediately transfer still images and videos recorded with the camera to a smart device. This allows for the sharing of high-quality images recorded with the Z 50 via social media.

Other notable features in brief:

  • 1 x High-speed SD card slot
  • Mic input port.
  • Camera body approx 395 gram.
  • Bluetooth & WiFi
  • Built-in pop up flash
  • Silent Shutter.

Available in Nov 2019, the price is not available at writing time. Visit Nikon Malaysia for more information.

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Editor, Photographer, Video Director & Producer and avid Traveller. The media industry has been my playground for a long time and is getting more exciting by the days.