If you loved the Nikon Z 9 but wished for a lighter, smaller Full Frame mirrorless hybrid still/video camera, Nikon now has the new Z 8. Nikon is definitely focused on cine as well as stills—the Z 8 records RAW internally: 12-bit N-RAW up to 8K 60p and ProRes RAW up to 4K 60p.
There are so many impressive things about this new camera that exclamation marks should replace bullet points.
- 52.37 million total pixels; 45.7 million effective pixels.
- Up to 8K60p (N-RAW) and 8K30p
- FX (Full Frame) Stacked CMOS BSI Sensor, 35.9 x 23.9 mm
- Z 8 is roughly 30% smaller than the Nikon Z 9, and 15% smaller than the Nikon D850.
- Nikon EXPEED 7 image processor provides a scan rate so fast that no mechanical shutter is needed.
- Almost no rolling shutter artifacts.
- Approx. Size: 144 x 118.5 x 83 mm ( 5.7 x 4.7 x 3.3 in.).
- Approx Weight: 820 g/1 lb. 13 oz. (camera body only).
- Cine features include: Red REC Frame Indicator, focus peaking, zebras, waveform, linear focus capability on many NIKKOR Z lenses, fine ISO control, Customizable AF speed tracking, timecode sync, 24-bit stereo audio, etc..
- Record up to 125 min. 4K UHD/60p,90 min. 8K UHD/30p.
- Movie ISO: 64 to 25600.
Movie file formats: NEV, MOV, MP4.
- N-RAW (12 bit), Apple ProRes RAW HQ (12 bit)
Apple ProRes 422 HQ (10 bit), H.265/HEVC (8 bit/10 bit)
H.264/AVC (8 bit)
Resolution and frame rates:
- 8256 x 4644: 60p/50p/30p/25p/24p
5392 x 3032: 60p/50p/30p/25p/24p
4128 x 2322: 120p/100p/60p/50p/30p/25p/24p
3840 x 2160: 120p/100p/60p/50p
Nikon writes: “The Z 8 can focus in candlelight during a first dance, yet is fast enough to freeze a falcon in flight. Like the Z 9, this new camera uses Nikon’s most powerful and precise AF system, which has been developed with deep learning technology. The focus is immediately responsive and reliable, with enhanced Subject Detection capability for photo and video that recognizes humans, pets, birds, trains, cars, motorbikes and bicycles, and now various types of airplanes.
“Because of its reduced body size and internal recording, it’s ideal for gimbal use, but also suitable as an A-camera.”
“Internal 12-bit RAW footage can be captured as ProRes RAW 4K60p, or up to 8K60p in N-RAW, Nikon’s RAW video format that is approximately a 50% smaller file size. N-RAW also creates a 1080p proxy file for easier editing.
“For more latitude with color, footage can be captured internally in 10-bit ProRes 4:2:2 HQ, while other profile options are available in-camera, including an enhanced N-Log, HLG as well as the easily gradable Flat color profile.”
- Option to shoot 10-bit HEIF image files, a compressed file format similar to JPEG that is about equal in size but offers approximately one billion more colors.
- 14-bit RAW still file formats and a new HLG RAW option.
- Portrait Impression Balance function for precise control of skin tones, new Skin Softening function and improved white balance.
- Burst speeds range from 20 fps full res RAW+JPEG, 30 fps full-res JPEG, 60 fps DX-format JPEG, or up to 120 fps as 11 mp JPEG with High-speed frame capture +.
- Wide, bright, blackout-free viewfinder— 1.27-cm/0.5-in. approx. 3690k-dot OLED EVF
- 3.2” 2100 dot horizontal and vertical tilting 4-axis touchscreen LCD, same as on Z 9.
- Image stabilization equivalent to 6 stops of compensation with compatible lenses.
- Two USB-C ports for charging (PD) and communication with accessories.
- Full-size HDMI port.
- Fully sealed and gasketed for dust and spray resistance. Body is made of a new pro-grade carbon fiber composite and magnesium alloy.
- Numerous customizable functions and buttons.
- The sensor cover glass has a dual coating to repel dust.
- A mechanical shield protects the sensor when changing lenses while the camera is turned off.
- Dual card slots: one CF Express Type B / XQD and one SD.
- The MB-N12 battery grip will be an optional accessory that provides approximately 1.8x more battery life, and is hot-swappable.
Price and Availability
The Nikon Z 8 will be available on May 25, 2023 for a suggested retail price of $3,999.95. The MB-N12 battery grip will be available in May for an SRP of $349.95.