Imaging Resource shows us how the Nikon Z is made in the Nikon Sendai factory

Imaging Resource posted a report from the Nikon Sendai factory to show how the new Nikon Z is made. This is their summary:

While the severe restrictions resulting from proprietary concerns meant that I can’t show you photos of some of the most interesting parts of the operation, I greatly appreciate the rare opportunity to see one of Nikon’s production facilities up close like this. As I mentioned at the outset, it was especially interesting to me to see how much had changed from when I last saw this factory, producing D3 bodies back in 2007. While automation has taken over many previously human-performed tasks, watching the current workers at their tasks served to show me how far automation has yet to go, in order to replace many of these high-skill operations. An awful lot still depends on human vision, adaptability and dexterity; it’s hard to imagine how some of the fine operations currently being done could be automated, even in 10 years or more time.

Two things were clear, namely that Nikon is both already producing substantial numbers of Z7 bodies, and has the space and capability to expand production in the future. (Although the availability of the aforementioned skilled workers may represent something of a pacing item.) 

Nikon interview at IR: They say they are likely to develop even faster than f/0,95 lenses!

Imaging Resource interviewed three Nikon managers and here are some key informations shared by them:

  • The Z7 JPEG quality is higher than the one from the D850
  • It does seem that the Z7 loses a significant amount of its low-light AF ability when shooting with lenses slower than f/2.Whether this is a limitation of its PDAF system or an overall limitation of the Z7’s hybrid AF system is unclear.
  • While their AF systems should be quite fast, the engineers said that the D850 and D5 would still likely be photographers’ first choice for sports photography. As to the future? Who knows, but it’s clear that mirrorless technology is still in its early stages, especially for Nikon, so there’s likely to be considerable improvement going forward.
  • On the other hand, video AF performance is drastically better than that of any previous Nikon DSLR body.
  • I asked how many of the Z7’s AF points were cross-type, and was a little startled to hear that none of them are; they’re all single-axis. When I expressed my surprise at this, the response was that they didn’t feel that they needed cross-type points, given the enormous number of points they had to work with, and the fact that the points were still quite sensitive to diagonally-oriented detail.
  • Z-mount: Having larger-diameter elements so much closer to the sensor surface means that light rays can strike the sensor surface more straight-on (telecentric), and that it’s much easier to control things like lateral chromatic aberration.
  • The amazing f/0.95 aperture of the coming 58mm lens is the starting point for super-aperture lenses, versus an end point! When I mentioned the f/0.95 aperture as a goal for the new mount, Mouri-san said that their goal was actually more ambitious than that, and that the 58/0.95 lens was just a “current point”.
  • Cheaper lenses coming in the future

Nikon is already working on new Higher and Lower end Z models

As reported by MirrorlessRumors it appears Nikon is working on Z models placed both above and below the current Z6 and Z7 cameras. There is yet no info about when these will be announced. It also seems unlikely that the low end models will feature a smaller APS-C sensor…

 

This is how the Nikon F1, F2 and F3 would look with a Z-mount

Many would have loved to get a more “old styled” Z-mount mirrorless camera. Well, don’t give up your hope yet. After all Nikon made a DF DSLR and we might get a Nikon F styled Z-mount camera too. Here are some renderings showing the F1 F2 and F3 cameras with Z-mount:

Nikon Z preorder links:
Nikon Z7 at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon Z6 at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon 24-70mm at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon 35mm at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon 50mm at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon FTZ adapter at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.

Finally the first images of the new 24-70mm f/2.8 and 14-30mm f/4.0 Z prototype lenses!

Well, it looks like the 24-70mm f/2.8 and 14-30mm f/4.0 development is really in final stage. Dpreview spotted them on the Tokyo Z launch event:

Also not quite ready for primetime are three forthcoming S-series lenses (from left to right) the 24-70mm F2.8, 58mm F0.95 ‘Noct’ and 14-30mm F4. (Sorry about the limited depth of field in this shot, I was trying to isolate the Noct, and then forgot to get a proper group shot before moving on. It’s been a long day.)

As you can hopefully tell, though, the Noct is massive and the 24-70mm F2.8 – while not quite as enormous – looks like it will also be a pretty beefy lens when it’s released next year, dwarfing the compact 24-70mm F4 kit lens. The 14-30mm (shown mounted on a Z 7) on the other hand is fairly compact, which we know is one of the technical advantages of a very short flange-back distance.

Nikon Z preorder links:
Nikon Z7 at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon Z6 at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon 24-70mm at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon 35mm at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon 50mm at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon FTZ adapter at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.

Here is the 14-30mm f/4.0:

Here we have the 58mm f/0,95

And here the 24-70mm f/2.8:

 

 

 

Noct 58mm f/0,95 will cost about $6,000!!!

At todays Z presentation in Tokyo Nikon suggested the new 58mm f/0,95 price will be around $6,000.
Here is a size comparison I made using the CameraSize.com tool. From left to right you can see the new Nikon 24-70mm Z lens, the Noct 58mm f/0,95 and the Zeiss 50mm f/1.4. Below there is one more comparison with the Nocturnus 50mm f/0,95 FE lens.

Nikon Z preorder links:
Nikon Z7 at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon Z6 at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon 24-70mm at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon 35mm at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon 50mm at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.
Nikon FTZ adapter at BHphoto, BestBuy, Amazon, Adorama, Calumet Germany. WexUk. Jessops. CameraPro.