Facebook Pixel The Nikon Z9 Is Officially in Development. Here's What We Know So Far.

The Nikon Z9 Is Officially in Development. Here’s What We Know So Far.

Nikon Z9 is in development

Earlier this month, Nikon officially announced its flagship Z-series camera, the Nikon Z9.

Designed for professionals, the Z9 will likely follow in the footsteps of the Canon EOS R5 and the Sony a1, both of which offer an unprecedented combination of high resolution, fast shooting speeds, class-leading video, and top-notch autofocus.

So while the Nikon Z9 will undoubtedly appeal as a mirrorless successor to the action-centric Nikon D6, the camera will also be suitable for event photographers, wildlife photographers, and hybrid shooters, as well as jack-of-all-trades professionals who require an all-in-one solution.

Nikon’s official announcement revealed little about the Z9 aside from its name, its release year (2021), and a few hints about shooting capabilities. The Z9 boasts 8K video and “utilizes a newly developed FX-format stacked CMOS sensor and new image-processing engine.” Nikon claims that the Z9 will serve up “the best still and video performance in Nikon history, meeting the advanced needs of professionals in a wide range of genres.”

But what else can we expect from the Nikon Z9?

Well, just prior to Nikon’s official announcement, Nikon Rumors published a series of Z9 specifications, and they are impressive. Take a look:

  • A 45, 50, or 60 MP full-frame sensor (likely 50 MP, according to Nikon Rumors)
  • A “D6 body combined with EOS R5 imaging, a9 II AF, and blackout-free EVF”
  • 20 frames-per-second continuous shooting
  • 8K/30p recording, as well as 4K/120p
  • Dual XQD/CFexpress card slots
  • “Improved noise levels and specifically significantly better dynamic range”
  • “Improved AF” and “‘stunning’ AF tracking (better than the D6)”
  • An ultra-capable electronic viewfinder, offering blackout-free performance

In other words, the Nikon Z9 will be a high-resolution, rugged, lightning-fast, and video-capable camera – the perfect all-around pick for serious professionals and very much in line with Nikon’s claim of “the best still and video performance in Nikon history.”

Regarding the release date:

Nikon Rumors suggests the fall of 2021, though you should be prepared for some delays thanks to COVID-related supply problems.

Nikon Rumors also claims the price will come in between $6000 and $7000 USD – expensive, yes, but fully compatible with Nikon’s D6-series pricing (you can currently purchase the D6, body only, for around $6500), and on par with the Sony a1 (which weighs in at $6500 USD).

Of course, for many shooters, the Nikon Z9 is unobtainable, or an excessive amount of camera, or both. But the Z9 isn’t just a new camera; it’s also a sign of Nikon’s dedication to its Z-series lineup and a look at the latest and greatest mirrorless technology (technology that may eventually trickle down into lower-priced models).

And for those who are considering the Z9, you shouldn’t have too long to wait!

Now over to you:

What do you think of the Nikon Z9? Is it a camera you plan to purchase? Are there any features that you want the Z9 to include? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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Jaymes Dempsey
Jaymes Dempsey

is the Managing Editor of Digital Photography School, as well as a macro and nature photographer from Ann Arbor, Michigan. To learn how to take stunning nature photos, check out his free eBook, Mastering Nature Photography: 7 Secrets For Incredible Nature Photos! And to see more of Jaymes’s work check out his website and his blog.

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