We have just added the new Nikon Z7 II mirrorless body into our rental pool here at Beau Photo!
An update to the Z7 introduced in 2018, the Z7 II has the same amazing 45.7MP full frame sensor, but has two EXPEED 6 image processors instead of the one in the Z7. This means the Z7 II has a slightly faster frame rate (10fps vs. 9fps), a much deeper buffer and an overall improvement in the AF system. As well as a higher responsiveness in the AF system, one can now use people or animal eye/face detection in Wide Area AF modes. There has also been a 1 stop improvement in low light AF capabilities (-3EV vs, -2EV). Video recording has also been improved with a 60 fps option when shooting 4K, albeit with a slight 1.08x crop factor. There is now a second SD card slot (Huzzah!) in addition to the CFExpress/XQD slot, which I’m sure pro shooters will greatly appreciate.
I am primarily a wildlife shooter now, and Burnaby Lake is a great place for testing camera and lens combos due to the abundant wildlife there. The Z7 II was a dream to use with its well thought out ergonomics. Aside from being a few millimetres thicker and a few grams heavier, the body is identical to the Z7, which is not a bad thing, as I found the Z7 to be a perfect fit for me. I was pleasantly surprised as to how good the image quality is. Well, maybe not, as the Z7 was already one of the beat cameras on the market in terms of image quality, it was a given. I was however, pleasantly surprised at the improvement in the AF system – very responsive and accurate! However, the animal eye/face detection is not as good as the Sony or Canon mirrorless bodies at the moment. The system did not reliably recognize bird faces, but was almost 100% accurate with squirrels – only birds and squirrels made themselves available to me that day. For the record, Nikon specifically mentions the animal eye/face detection is aimed at dogs & cats, and do not claim it does well with birds. Otherwise, I had no complaints.
I have not tested the human eye/face detection in a real world portraiture setting, but the preliminary testing in store that we have done indicates very good accuracy and tracking of people.
All photos taken with Nikon Z7 II body and Nikon 400mm f2.8 VR II lens with FTZ adapter.