Author Topic: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?  (Read 2442 times)

Bear Dale

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Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« on: March 03, 2020, 00:07:33 »
Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?

How do you like the Z7?

Tristin

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2020, 07:23:18 »
Hey Bear, while i haven't gone D850 -> Z7, I did try going D750 -> Z6, so I do feel i have some insight that would have meaning.

There were two things the Z brought that were improvements.  IBIS and, surprisingly for me, the EVF.  It's much easier to see what you are doing in low light and zooming in is incredible for manual focus.  Those were the only real benefits I noticed after going D750 -> Z6 after a month of solid use.  To be fair, those improvements were absolutely huge in the right circumstances.  Video is far better, if that matters.

Downsides are reduced Dynamic Range due to banding and inferior body control.  I have heard Z6/Z7 AF-C isn't quite up to par with the DSLRs as well, but I don't have any AF lenses. 

As it seems that you focus on birding in daylight, I'd be hard pressed to see advantages in the Z7 over the D850 besides wider AF coverage in your case, in all honesty.  I'm guessing you already use VR lenses, so I'm not sure how much benefit you'd gain from IBIS, and I can't imagine the EVF being better for daytime birding.  While zooming in for focus is effective, it is certainly too sluggish for use in shooting wildlife.  The current Zs are slower cameras in operation than the DSLRs are in general.  If I shared your taste in subjects, I'd be waiting for a Z body to come long with proper controls and a non-sluggish EVF at a minimum. 
-Tristin

John Geerts

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2020, 07:47:00 »
I did.

The main question should be: Would you have chosen the Z7 over the D850  presuming  they both were available.?


For me the question can be answered as 'Yes', also fed with the experience of extensive use with the Z 6.

As Image quality between the D850 and Z7 should not really be different (given the sensors), the handling of the camera is the main reason.  Seize, Weight, IBIS, Focus Peaking,  100% viewfinder zoom during Focus,  and the practical use of the Electronic Viewfinder in combination the back screen are my main motivations.  They all can lead to a better outcome.

Plus the Nikon Z-mount is very attractive to use with other non-native lenses as the flange distance is very short.  On top of that   I like the combination with the  faster Z 6. 

Nikon's permanent Firmware releases is also an important matter. The camera is now, with all the updates, better and different, especially on the AF  and handling.

I do not recognize Tristin's drawbacks regarding the reduced Dynamic Range concerning banding.

longzoom

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2020, 07:58:05 »
John, I couldn't be agree more, with every world, without any reservation! LZ

Tristin

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2020, 08:28:58 »
I do not recognize Tristin's drawbacks regarding the reduced Dynamic Range concerning banding.


It only becomes visible when lifting shadows and is an artifact of PDAF, I doubt it would ever be an issue with daytime birding. 

It's unlikely you'll notice it unless you've gotten used to taking advantage of recent Nikon DSLR's clean shadows for increased DR by under-exposing RAWs for later correction. The Zs don't have poor DR at all, just not effectively as wide as the DSLRs. 
-Tristin

John Geerts

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2020, 08:42:42 »


It only becomes visible when lifting shadows and is an artifact of PDAF, I doubt it would ever be an issue with daytime birding. 

It's unlikely you'll notice it unless you've gotten used to taking advantage of recent Nikon DSLR's clean shadows for increased DR by under-exposing RAWs for later correction. The Zs don't have poor DR at all, just not effectively as wide as the DSLRs.
Thanks for the elaboration, Tristin.  I didn't notice it in my night shots, but I must admit that I did not heavily under-expose.   Did an firmware upgrade not solve it (partly)?

Bent Hjarbo

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #6 on: March 03, 2020, 08:49:40 »
I added a Z6 to my photo bag, using D500 and D800, and before that D200 and D700.
I and not amused with the user interface, but otherwise the camera works fine and the AF is ok for sports photos.
The exposure meter like snow much better than my D500/800, it is more like my D700. Less work on correcting exposure in PP.
It is nice to be able to se the outcome in the viewfinder before you press the shutter, that is a benefit.
Did take a lot of night pictures, but I did not have any problems with the picture quality.

PeterN

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2020, 11:40:00 »
Bear,
My experience is based on switching from D750 to Z6 (I did not need the High resolution sensors because I mainly use the Nikons for events).
There are pros and cons to both (dslr and mirrorless) systems. It is my understanding from Photography Life that the AF accuracy of the Z system is superior. Personally I did not have accuracy issues with both systems. Switching between various AF tracking modes is easier with the dslr because it has a separate button.
 Personally I do not have other issues with the controls like Tristin has or with the user interface like Bent has. I also did not experience the banding issue Tristin mentions.
My main problem with the Z system is the lag time between waking the system and making the shot. During events you need to be able to raise the camera and shoot immediately. On several occasions I missed the moment with the Z. I guess this can be mitigated by adapting the shooting style (i.e. slightly press the shutter when raising the camera; changing settings did not help)Nevertheless, I know of at least one professional photographer switched back to the dslr for this reason.
The main advantage of the Z system is the ability to zoom via the EVF. This definitely helps with manual focus andwith PC-E lenses. Another advantage is that the Z lenses are apparently “better” (whatever “better” means).
If you would ask mewhat I would do in your situation, I would say that I would keep using the D850. I think it balances better withthe long lenses you have and AF tracking seems to be still better with the D850. The writeoff will be substantial. In addition, a 60MP successor of the Z7 is rumored for this year. Adding a Z7 might be an option to benefit from the advantages of both systems. A D5/D6 might also be a possibility ;-)

1addition: I just saw in a video that the autofocus of F/G lenses with the FTZ adapter can be (so not always) less reliable. I can’t confirm or deny. Others might
Peter

Tristin

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #8 on: March 03, 2020, 20:06:55 »
Personally I do not have other issues with the controls like Tristin has...

Change the Drive or Meter Mode on your Z body ;)
-Tristin

Roland Vink

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2020, 21:07:30 »
It's always good to look at new products to see if they do the job better, plenty of good responses here.

Maybe a better question to ask is how your current setup does not work for you? Is there anything about your kit which prevents you getting the pictures you want, or the results are less than optimal? If you can identify anything here it should help you to determine if there is something else which will do a better job. Your portfolio is already outstanding, you may realise that your current kit is actually a good fit and you don't really need anything else (nothing wrong with looking at new gear though :) ) Or that your money is better spent on a new lens instead (eg replace your 200-500 with the 500PF). Also keep in mind that every kit is a compromise, for example the 200-500 has the flexibility of a zoom, the 500PF is smaller and sharper but is a prime, the extra speed of the 500/4 is useful for low light and DOF control but is much heavier and more expensive. Similarly there are trade-offs with DSLRs vs mirrorless...

chambeshi

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #10 on: March 04, 2020, 11:22:57 »
Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?

How do you like the Z7?

The similar sensor specifications hide quite different cameras. After shooting the Z7 since Oct 2018, it's become very clear the advantages of the Z7 are the wysiwyg EVF and silent shutter primarily. The obviation of AFFT also eclipses a lot of fussy fiddling. There is no better FX camera for landscapes IMHO (especially with 14-30 f4S). Although Firmware v2.0 and v3.0 recently  improved aspects of the AFC, the Z Nikons are not in the same league for action that we depend on with the prosumer DSLRs. And, the Nikon triumvirate is top tier for AFC (D5, D500, D850), but IME compared to the Z7 a D750 has more dependable AFC. The achilles heel of the Z AFC is its all too common bug of the focus grabbing on to the background, unless the subject dominates the frame. Wide-S seems to be a bit better than Single-point in this respect, but too often the Z AFC misses opportunities that a DSLR would grab. This is true with key challenges in most wildlife genres (macro excluded obviously where the Z7 gives nice advantages).

Nikon have persistently failed to update the Custom settings in the Z6 and Z7 to include essential D850 features. The inability to set Fn to AF-ON+Focus mode is a showstopper for action genres. And in any case, back in mid-2018 FW upgrades of all these top tier prosumer Nikons should have enabled the Recall Shooting Functions that's become standard on the D5. Such straightforward fixes will only sell Nikon more cameras: so everybody wins  ;)  ;)

Don't underestimate the advantages of Silent-shooting for sensitive subjects. I have found this a big advantage for shy carnivores and often birds too. A Z7 + 500 PF or 300 PF+TC14 III is nicely compact and handy. I often use Z7 with the 300 PF+TC17. The Z gives you the wider focus point coverage even @f8 (and even @f11!). This chance image [appended] represents yet another of those ideas in progress. Taken across a river at too great a distance: shooting through vegetation, as the massive croc submerged smoothly and swiftly into the sinister depths. Even cropped, it shows what the Z can deliver at the right time and place - shooting 500 PF+TC17 II fully open at f9.5...where a DSLR would struggle.

I continue to shoot the D850 and Z7 in tandem. The FTZ works very well with all the AFS F-Nikkors. Here's hoping the D780 portends an upgraded D850..... The synthesis of the choice bits of Z MILC (ie Z7 sensor with PDAF) and D6 AF engine :-) To move my wallet, a FX upgrade / new model in the Z system must bring truly excellent AFC with all key pro custom options.


 
#chambeshiphoto
D850, D780, 20 f4 AI 28 f2.8AIS 45 f2.8AIP 55mm 2.8AIS+60 f2.8G Micro 58 f1.4G, 85 f1.4D, 400 f2.8E VRII 300 f4E PF 500 f5.6E PF, 70-180 Micro f4-5.6D 70-200 f2.8E FL, Zeiss Distagons -15 f2.8, 21 f2.8

Bear Dale

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2020, 07:13:26 »
Thank you one and all for you replies, very much appreciated reading them all.

The Z7 seems very attractive to me, I would also like to get the 500mm PF lens.

Most likely if I buy the Z7 the Z8 will be announced within a week and if I buy the 500mm PF lens the rumoured 600mm PF will also be announced :)

Looking through LR, almost 100% of my 200-500mm shots are taken at 500mm, so the 500mm PF would be a weight saving for me.

ColinM

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2020, 19:18:20 »
Fascinating group of useful real world experiences here.
Any more?

Bear Dale

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #13 on: March 11, 2020, 09:27:49 »
Just bought a Nikon Z7 for AUD $3,698.00 (USD $2,404.00) and Nikon Australia have a special where they throw in a bonus free Z 50mm F1.8 Lens valued at AUD $999 (USD $596.95) and also a free AUD $280.00 Nikon XQD card, so feels like a pretty good deal.

Also treated myself after going through the bushfires in January and the flood in February to a Nikkor 500mm PF.

Probably means with this discounting that a Z8 is likely to be announced soon!

Erik Lund

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Re: Anyone gone from a D850 to Z7?
« Reply #14 on: March 11, 2020, 11:03:26 »
Shooting D850, tried Z7 a couple of times, I don't like the EVF, seeing a delayed digital version of reality stopped down is not for my liking especially with sharp wide angel lenses, zooming in and out focus peaking is tiresome.
The tine Z camera is not for my big hands as well.
The D850 is a nice size, I have the option to have the grip with battery power to shoot thousands of images or hours of video, or leave it off for a walk in the park.
The above 'results that could not have been done with a DSLR D850' Sorry I simply can't relate to that - I could have shot any of the above with my D850 - It has all the features, not exactly the same but for sure just as good and in most cases heaps better.
For a few applications I can see a Z is nice like the short focal plane distance. But not for me.
Erik Lund