Firmware Update for All Nikon Z . Cameras – And The Wishlist Gets Smaller

Nikon Z5 and 24-70mm Kit

Nikon just announced firmware updates for its entire Z-series camera lineup, to be launched on April 26. Instead of routine bug fixes, all the changes Nikon is listing so far are performance related. Let’s take a look at the functions that were added to each digital camera.

Nikon Z6 II and Z7 II

The new firmware for both the Z6 II and Z7 II is called edition 1 . 20, and it’s primarily an update in order to autofocus speed and tracking performance. Nikon’s wording within the press release is pretty confusing, but here are the improvements all of us seem to be getting:

  • Faster autofocus in low lighting
  • Better tracking when using encounter detection, eye detection, or subject-tracking AF
  • Improved encounter and eye detection when utilizing external speedlights

Nikon Z6

Nikon is not limiting the firmware updates in order to its newest cameras. The previous generation Z6 and Z7 are getting updates as well, combined with the less expensive Nikon Z5 plus Z50. Here are the Nikon Z6’s updates, with edition 3. 30:

  • “Save Focus Position” option, to let you retain the current concentrating distance when turning off and the camera, as opposed to resetting focus to infinity
  • Tone of voice memo function (same because on some of Nikon’s professional DSLRs, like the D5 and D6)

Nikon Z7

For whatever reason, the Z7 will not gain the voice memo function, so there’s only one feature added to it in version 3. 30:

  • “Save Focus Position” option

Nikon Z5

The Nikon Z5’s firmware will be version 1 . 10, and it has two new features:

  • “Save Focus Position” option
  • Faster autofocus in low light conditions when using the low-light AF mode

Nikon Z50

Lastly, firmware edition 2 . 10 for the Nikon Z50 will add 1 new feature:

  • “Save Focus Position” option

Our Take

Even though it is a relatively minor update, it still fixes one of the biggest complaints in our Nikon Z wishlist – the “Save Focus Position” option. This was a strange problem with the first Z cameras, where any Nikon Z lenses would reset focus to infinity when turning off and on the camera, even when set to manual focus. Although Nikon fixed the issue on the Z6 II and Z7 II, that was small comfort to existing Z-system users, until now. I personally use the particular Nikon Z7 as our main camera, and this problem has always bothered me, so I’m looking forward to installing the firmware update afterwards this week.

It remains to be seen how significant the autofocus updates are going to be for the Z6 II, Z7 II, and Z5. Nikon’s wording and terminology in the press release is quite confusing and leaves room pertaining to interpretation about how significant the changes are. We’ll become testing the level of improvements and including that information in our upcoming Z6 II and Z7 II reviews.

The one other feature that Nikon is adding is really a “voice memo” option for the particular Nikon Z6. (Nikon also says it’s planning to include the same feature to the Z6 II at a later date. ) This method should be useful for making notes in the field about the photos you are taking, such as information about who’s in a photo at a wedding, or post-processing ideas you might have in the field. It’s a bit unexpected that – as far as we know – this feature won’t appear on the Z7 or Z7 II any time soon, considering that those are Nikon’s high end Z-series cameras.

Nikon’s full press release is without a doubt below:

NIKON TO RELEASE NEW FIRMWARE FOR Z SERIES MIRRORLESS CAMERAS ON APRIL 26

MELVILLE, NY – Nikon Inc. will be pleased to announce that firmware Ver. 1 . 20 for your Z 7II and Z . 6II, firmware Ver. a few. 30 for the Z seven and Z 6, firmware Ver 1 . 10 for that Z 5, and firmware Ver. 2 . 10 for that Z 50 will be released on April 26.

Firmware Ver. 1 ) 20 for the Z 7II and Z 6II will offer you increased AF performance, which includes faster focusing when taking with AF in low light situations. Further, AF usability when using an external  Speedlight will also increase, through improvements to detection functionality in scenes where it was difficult to detect faces plus eyes, as well as improvements to subject visibility during reside view shooting. In addition , tracking frames used for face and eye detection, as well as subject-tracking AF have been improved, allowing smoother and more stable capturing.

Additional firmware updates will also be available on 04 26 for other Z . series cameras. These improvements include firmware Ver. 3. 30 for the Z 7 and Z 6, in addition to Ver. 2 . 10 for the Z 50, which will include the Save Focus Place option that allows the current concentrate position to be saved when the camera is turned off plus restored when next turned on. The new firmware for the Z . 6 will also add the voice memo recording/play function, popular with the D6. The addition of the voice memo recording/play function is also planned for your Z 6II in a potential firmware update.

Further, firmware Ver. 1 ) 10 for the Z 5 will include faster AF recognition speed during low lighting situations when shooting in the Low-Light AF mode, therefore improving usability. The Z . 5 will also gain the particular Save Focus Position choice.

For more information for the latest Nikon products, including the latest firmware updates, make sure you visit  www.nikonusa.com .

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