Opinion: I’m glad the future of Nikon is in the very capable hands of the Z mount

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It’s no secret that Nikon missed the mirrorless revolution party – and was a bit late for the after-party – but when it arrived it brought the best gift: the mighty Z mount. Throwing an alternative to the now 62-year-old F-mount was a bold move, and one that was always going to ruffle some feathers.

However, three years after the release of the first Nikon Z6 and Nikon Z7, it is quite clear that the Z mount is more than a worthy successor.

• Find out more: The best Nikon cameras

The open secret of the Z mount is its oversized diameter. Internally, it is 17% larger than F media and larger than any full frame media on the market. This is advantageous for a number of technical reasons, but the keys are increased light collection, better image quality, and smaller lenses and bodies.

The proof is in the pudding; In testing, the best Nikon Z lenses consistently improved their F-mount equivalents. In fact, we had to scale our lab test graphics to account for the incredible increase in resolution of the mount lenses. Z.

All that really stands in the way of the Z mount is the lack of available focal lengths, but with the Nikon Z 14-24mm f / 2.8 S, Nikon Z 24-70mm f / 2.8 S and Nikon Z 70-200 mm f / 2.8 VR S finally rounding out the S line’s ‘holy trinity’, along with the release of the incredible Nikon Z MC 105mm f / 2.8 VR S to appease macro photographers, the basics are now largely covered.

A quick glance at the latest Nikon Z lens roadmap is a reminder that we have two fixed focal length super-telephoto lenses and two zoom super-telephoto lenses to look forward to – essentials for wildlife and sports photographers, who are also eagerly awaiting the arrival. of the upcoming mirrorless flagship, the Nikon Z9.

But the Z mount isn’t just about premium S-line lenses. The Nikon Z DX 50-250mm f / 4.5-6.3 VR and Nikon Z DX 16-50mm f / 3.5-6.3 VR are good budget buys, while the Nikon Z 24-200mm f / 4-6.3 VR is a very tempting prospect for the amateur of full format.

Many of us still happily work with F-mount cameras and optics – and Nikon made it clear, with last year’s Nikon D6, that there is still life in the old dog. And considering the gargantuan breadth and breadth of the F-mount range, its undeniable affordability in the used market, its unmatched heritage and rock-solid performance, this remains an extremely attractive option.

Whichever mount you prefer now, it’s good to know that the future of Nikon is in very good hands. Happy Birthday, Z mount – the next 59 years have come!

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