Nikon Z6 in 2022

Nikon Z6 in 2022

Having had my Nikon Z6 since May 2021, I thought it would be interesting for a quick update on how I’m finding it having been using it now for almost 9 months.

Primarily I bought the Nikon Z6 as a camera for out in the woods and for a bit of landscape photography, so most of the time the camera lives on a tripod. I use it rarely for anything else!

I previously had a Fujifilm X-H1 prior to the Nikon, but am not a fan of the RAW files Fujifilm cameras produce. The Nikon files are far more rich and useable than the Fujifilm files in my opinion YMMV.

Here’s a few likes and dislikes I’ve come across since owning, it’s not an exhaustive list by any means!

Things I like about the Nikon Z6

Image quality
The files from the Nikon Z6 are really very good – typical Nikon with a good amount of shadow recovery and highlight detail.

Handling/Ergonomics
The camera feels great in the hand, it has a nice deep grip that makes it easy to hold and operate. The buttons are well placed and have a good feel to them.

User Profiles
These are handy, I have each set up for different shooting conditions. Its nice to have a dedicated ‘landscape’ setting with ISO set to 100 along with a set shutter speed and aperture as a starting point.

IBIS
Prior to the X-H1 I’d never owned a camera body with IBIS. For me it’s a real bonus having a camera with IBIS and the Nikon IBIS works extremely well.

Z Lenses
I’ve got 3 Z lenses for my Z6. The 14-30mm f4, 24-70 f4 and the 40mm f4. Each has its own merits of use, are very good quality optically and albeit a little plasticky, work well.

The i Button and Menu
A really handy way of using your favourite settings and being able to change each one without deep diving into the menus.

Things I’m not keen on!

Tilting Screen
I like the tilting screen but the real annoyance is the lack of being able to tilt in portrait mode. This is a little frustrating.

No Blinkies*
Having the ability to really see WYSIWYG from the live view is a massive bonus on mirrorless cameras, however not being able to see where you’re blowing out highlights before you take the photo is a bit of a step backwards from the Fujifilm.

Long Exposure
Again, this is one of those things that occasionally frustrates. With a maximum timer of 30 seconds for really long exposures you have to go to Bulb mode and use a separate release. A much longer time mode for long exposure would be much more useful.

Dust!
I’ve never known a camera body like it for attracting dust! When I received the camera and used it for the first time, the sensor was filthy! Subsequent sensor cleaning I’ve done has still not eradicated the issue and it’s a constant fight to eliminate dust from the sensor.

Lens availability
Nikon has stepped up over the past 6 months with some new Z lenses coming along. The real issue is on a mid longer length zoom lens, the only real options are the 24-200mm f4-6.3, the hugely expensive 70-200mm f2.8 or moving back to an F lens with an FTZ adaptor. If only Nikon would release a 70-200 f4, I would be set!

Conclusions

Having said all that, I have been really pleased with the Nikon Z6 for the kind of photography I do. Many of the things I dislike I can workaround without too much drama, they mostly are a frustration.

The camera along with the 14-30 f4 and 24-70 f4 lens makes for a relatively lightweight full frame camera. It’s actually easy enough to carry around in a Billingham Hadley without too much strain.

Would I recommend the Nikon in 2022? Absolutely, given the price a used body can now be bought for, I think it’s a bit of a steal to be honest. It’s a flexible, versatile camera with great image quality and lots to recommend it!

** A DPR user has a workaround for this which I’ve tried and seems to work quite well. The link for that can be found here – https://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/4611664

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