Next Nikon Camera after the Z9

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Neil Laubenthal

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It's all hypothetical, but why would the 7III get the Z9 sensor? If you put a Z9 sensor (and an Expeed 7 to drive it), you basically have a Z9 and you want product differentiation. I suspect the Z9 sensor is probably the most expensive individual part in the Z9, and I suspect it, (and stacked sensors in general) will be reserved for "special" cameras until stacked sensor costs come down.

Wouldn't it make more sense to pair the Expeed 7 with the current Z7 sensor and basically get something that looks like a R5?

Personally, I suspect cameras like the 7 aren't going to get the Z9 sensor until the Z9 gets a new sensor.
Because the sensor drives the frame rate and blackout free EVF due to data speed. Yes, a 3500 Z7III at full Z9 specs would cannibalize sales…but a 20FPS max body at lighter weight than the Z9 and at a more affordable price will sell a lot of bodies…and the lower specs won’t take away too many Z9 sales. Biggest reason to drop that sensor into the midrange bodies is that the R&D on it is done and spreading that over more bodies is good finance…and by carefully limiting some features but still improving frame rate and AF in the midrange bodies makes Nikon money and helps stem the kNikon is doomed, everyone is switching brands hoopla. Pros will still buy the Z9…as will amateurs willing to spend that much and carry the weight…but in reality pros and those amateurs rent the majority of the market.

And as another poster said…the Z7 body has a smaller battery so would likely slow down the processor a bit…so perhaps 15 per 1i per 20 FPS max and skip or similarly limit the 30 and 120 based on battery. Take out ink video on the cheaper model…and Fn3 would go to based on the smaller body.

and again…as previously said…Nikon has a plan and is executing it. None of their decisions are made in vacuum…and they’ve had lots of discussions on trade offs vs sales cannibalism bs selling more mid range bodies.

There are lots of us that won’t buy a Z9 simply because we don’t want, need, and aren’t interested in carrying a built in grip heavier body…we simply aren’t interested in a grip. Yes…they’re nice if one shoots a lot of portrait images…but shooting landscape is my format about o8 or 99% of the time…so turning the body occasionally is a win trade off for us over the weight issue. I would happily buy a grip less Z9…but battery issues mean it would be less pro…but that’s fine for a lot of uses. Those super high frame rates mean a lot more images to cull and post process…so my guess us that after the initial wow I can do this wears off most Zos will be shot at 20 max most of the time. I’ve seen more than 1 A1 user admit that 30 is a marketing idea mostly and they rarely use it. When needed…it might give you a few more keepers than 20…and Steve is correct in saying that those extra keepers give you more opportunities for the perfect wingbeat…but for the vast majority of shooters…the 98% great wingbeat is good enough so that they aren’t willing to pay more or carry more weight.
 
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John Navitsky

Well-known member
Yes, but blackout free is only one feature on the feature list and it's not the most critical. People love the R5 and R6 and they're using a reasonably conventional sensor. What they love about it is the AF. Nikon needs their mid-line cameras to have better AF and that doesn't _require_ the stacked sensor. At least not yet. Absolutely at some point the mid-line cameras will have a stacked sensor, but I think we're not going to see it outside of the single digit bodies for at least one more generation.
 

Neil Laubenthal

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Supporting Member
Yes, but blackout free is only one feature on the feature list and it's not the most critical. People love the R5 and R6 and they're using a reasonably conventional sensor. What they love about it is the AF. Nikon needs their mid-line cameras to have better AF and that doesn't _require_ the stacked sensor. At least not yet. Absolutely at some point the mid-line cameras will have a stacked sensor, but I think we're not going to see it outside of the single digit bodies for at least one more generation.
Could be…this is all just rampant speculation anyway…Nikon has a lot of highly paid people who have likely already figured this out. In fact…it would not surprise me that as part of the Z9 sensor development they also have a series of other stacked sensors at various resolutions…a lot of the development work easily supports that as a project plan…and a fast stacked sensor would allow shutterless on a mot more bodies in the line…and that reduces costs for parts and increases reliability since fewer mechanical things to break. As I said…lots of trade off decisions there and I’m sure they already have a fully thought plan. We will see…
 

Ricky Simpson

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24 Megapixel Mirrorless similar to the D500 with some of the Z9 technology which focuses on images instead of video.
 

Andrew Lamberson

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As a former Product Manager at 3M, I would really hope Nikon is looking holistically at the product line they need to a strong plan from entry up through "prosumer" to flagship. They need to make the line as strong as possible to reduce erosion of their users and provide for a migration strategy.

Z Line Migration Strategy:
  • They have a hit (apparently) with the entry-level Z Fc at $1000 and Z5.
  • "Prosumer" with the Z6II @ $2000 and the Z7II @ $3000 (body only). The Z6II and Z7II need autofocus improvements while maintaining their price points
  • Flagship Z9 at $5500.
  • Maybe room above that???

That looks like a pretty solid price migration strategy to me.

My daughter purchased the Z Fc and loves it. She remarked that there are already a few more in her Parents Group after seeing hers! (in a shame that Nikon doesn't offer a referral program!!).
 

eaj101

Well-known member
I can just about guarantee that the next four years of cameras are already in development. Nikon has said time after time that they're now targeting the the 'enthusiast' and pro markets, implicitly deprecating the consumer end. Of course, then they announce the Zfc, which is about as consumer-ish as they come.

I wonder about all vendors commitment to DX/crop sensor in the long term. Sony seems to have bailed on it and Nikon looks like they may be close to that, but the recent spate of DX lenses gives me hope.

Sometimes I think that none of the camera manufacturers have much of a clue about the wants of their customers, except for the high-end PJ/sports types who become 'ambassadors'. And none of them really seem to have a well-defined product line (entry, mid-low, mid-high, high-low, etc etc). To my eye Canon at least is talking the most coherent 'product line' story. Nikon may be trying, and Sony is going six ways at once below the a1. Which a7 and why, why an a9, why so many marks still on the market...

Thinking out loud, my .02c
 

abc123brian

Well-known member
It seems mentioned frequently that the Z8 will be a D850 replacement, but I wonder if it be will a R3/A9 competitor. Is there a market for a high speed, lower resolution camera? If it came in somewhere around 30MP, 30FPS, and the AF we are seeing in the flagship cameras, it could be a big success. I don’t think we are going to see a direct replacement for the D850, though the Z7 series should get close. I’m also not confident we will ever see a direct D500 replacement, but it’s always possible.
 

sid_19911991

Active member
What will the next camera be (or next few) after the Z9 is released and the Nikon development gets a well deserved holiday?

Which do you think Nikon will produce and which would like to see?

A few ideas

Z8 ( idea 1) - low res version (25-30 MP) of the Z9 w/o the integrated grip, perhaps 25-30 FPS in raw, 4K, not 8K video.

Z90 - gripless version of the Z9, still 47 MP but only 15 FPS in Raw, 8K video

Z8 (idea 2) - 60-75 MP, gripless camera, perhaps 10 FPS or less, video ?

Z6/Z7 III - update current cameras with latest Expeed processes, 8K video for Z7 III, Z9 compression algorithms, Z9 lite AF

Z60 or Z50 II - great DX camera, 4K not 8K video, gripless, Z9 lite AF, Hi efficiency compression,

Remember, rumors and speculation are fun. Of course we will miss the mark, but we can enjoy the process ..

If the Z8 possesses Expeed 7 processor, there is no reason why its AF can't be as good as Z9.

Z7 series should focus on high megapixel count like Sony R series.

Z6 series should focus on ISo & dynamic range performance & remove the AA filter. Keep it at 24 mp.

Z8 could be a mix of Z6 & Z9. It should compete with R5.

What I would like in a Z8

1) 33 MP
2) BSI sensor
3) Non-stacked sensor for better dynamic range
4) 14 FPS with no shutter or mechanical shutter
5) Z9 AF
6) Same screen/EVF as Z9 to keep costs low
7) No AA filter
8) ISO performance as good as Z6 ii
9) Better buffer
10) 4k 120 FPS @ 10-bit raw 4:2:2 internal (No 8k)
11) Virtually blackout free EVF
11) Price 3,750 USD
12) No integrated grip.
13) No tilt screen.
14) Battery performance of Z7.
15) No sensor guard


This should sell like crazy!
 

MartyD

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I think we will see an Z6ii and Z7ii firmware update at about the same time the Z9 begins shipping. I just don't think Nikon has utilized the dual processors yet and is figuring out what AF improvements developed for the Z9 can fit in the Zii's. I think the easy progression after that is just the Z6iii and Z7iii with an Expeed 7 processor providing better buffer, faster frame rate, and much improved AF. I am not sure what we will see in a high performance crop sensor mirrorless.
 

Neil Laubenthal

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I think we will see an Z6ii and Z7ii firmware update at about the same time the Z9 begins shipping. I just don't think Nikon has utilized the dual processors yet and is figuring out what AF improvements developed for the Z9 can fit in the Zii's. I think the easy progression after that is just the Z6iii and Z7iii with an Expeed 7 processor providing better buffer, faster frame rate, and much improved AF. I am not sure what we will see in a high performance crop sensor mirrorless.
I wonder how much more frame rate they can get out of a Z7IIi even with the Expeed 7 processor…the sensor data rate and capabilities re bound to be limiting although how much is debatable/unknown outside of Nikon. Sure…the 20/30/120 is nice…but 15 is really probably enough for most situations and I would stay in full res RAW unless faster was needed for a particular situation. Partly for too many images to cull and PP…partly for card capacity…and for most situations getting the perfect moment isn’t much of an improvement over the 98% perfect moment…at least for me.

I agree though…they were able to get the original Z6 and 7 up to about equivalent to the II models according to most of what I’ve seen on the web albeit that’s a subjective rather than scientific evaluation. Given that…the dual processors in the II models certainly offers room for improvement and I believe it is coming as well…if for no other reason than stemming the outflow from the brand for people who aren’t looking for a flagship priced body.
 

fcotterill

Well-known member
Even without a stacked sensor, the Expeed7 alone might be capable of supporting significant performance advances in a camera. But a stacked sensor is likely the prerequisite to get very fast scan speeds = high speed imaging rates....

"....The interesting aspect here isn't that the stacked portion of the image sensor might allow dual-port reads of the collected data, but rather that the EXPEED7 chip has the ability to talk to multiple streams of data simultaneously, and at both ends (input and output) as well keeping the in between processing separate. This suggests multiple cores able to operate completely independently."


 
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G Wright

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If they built a Zfc using the 45mp FX sensor, or even the 24.9mp sensor and Expeed 7, it would be my final camera purchase....and I may buy 2!
 

PAUL50

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I think there's a chance that the Z9 isn't the "real" flagship, just the current one. I have a feeling that a Z1 may be coming in a couple years. There are a few places where the Z9 seems to hold back (EVF, built-in buffer capacity, etc) that seem to leave room for another camera. In addition, the price is almost too low for a flagship camera IMO (I'm not complaining :) ). Time will tell...
In my very limited and humble experience I feel certain that for as long as Nikon exists there will never be an ultimate final flagship camera. And I’m equally certain I’ll continue to be routinely sucked into Nikons ultimate camera black hole. And, not complaining either. LOL!
 

RichF

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In my very limited and humble experience I feel certain that for as long as Nikon exists there will never be an ultimate final flagship camera. And I’m equally certain I’ll continue to be routinely sucked into Nikons ultimate camera black hole. And, not complaining either. LOL!
Yes, technology will always improve and the next widget (camera) will be much better than the current model and solve all sorts of problems. Just wait for it to be released. Or jump from manufacturer to manufacturer to chase the greatest and latest
 

AlfC

New member
An important factor in Nikon's strategy is that the market for ILCs has diminished greatly. That means new cameras have to make the most of parts and R&D. Given that the sensor takes a large slice of production costs and that the new Z9 sensor has taken a lot of R&D effort, it is likely that cost spreading for the Z9 sensor (and tech development costs) by using it in other bodies is an attractive proposition, particularly since the Z9 is unlikely to sell in such high numbers as cheaper cameras. To my mind that makes it more likely that we will see a Z8 using the Z9 sensor but cut down in several other ways many of which have been suggested above. A ZX D500 equivalent (Z90) is really what I would like to see but it would need a new high end sensor of its own with no cost spreading through use in other bodies.
 

Maurie

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All very interesting reading. Interesting because of the wide variance of theories, opinions, desires, I-wants!

So I’ll add my 0.2 worth: I’d like to see a Z9 spec photo-only gripless body, made for practical working photographers. I’d call it a Z-Pro. 🤔
 

JimFromAZ

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I think there's a chance that the Z9 isn't the "real" flagship, just the current one. I have a feeling that a Z1 may be coming in a couple years. There are a few places where the Z9 seems to hold back (EVF, built-in buffer capacity, etc) that seem to leave room for another camera. In addition, the price is almost too low for a flagship camera IMO (I'm not complaining :) ). Time will tell...
I agree with the technology hold-backs. A future Z1 with a 60MP stacked sensor makes sense too. I was thinking it would be called the Z9 II but Z1 sounds good to me.
 

RichF

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I agree with the technology hold-backs. A future Z1 with a 60MP stacked sensor makes sense too. I was thinking it would be called the Z9 II but Z1 sounds good to me.
I am a bit surprised at the name of the Z system. Higher numbers offer more
Features. Previously for canon and Nikon had flagship cameras in lower numbers
 

G Wright

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All very interesting reading. Interesting because of the wide variance of theories, opinions, desires, I-wants!

So I’ll add my 0.2 worth: I’d like to see a Z9 spec photo-only gripless body, made for practical working photographers. I’d call it a Z-Pro. 🤔
I agree with you. Video is one feature I almost never use. I know it broadens the appeal, but it would be nice not to pay for something you don't use.
 

Doug Herr

Well-known member
I agree with you. Video is one feature I almost never use. I know it broadens the appeal, but it would be nice not to pay for something you don't use.
It's unlikely that video increases the cost at all. Including it means they sell more units resulting in volume efficiencies and lower cost per unit.
 

RichF

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It's unlikely that video increases the cost at all. Including it means they sell more units resulting in volume efficiencies and lower cost per unit.
I agree that video does not add much, if anything, to the hardware costs. Video increases the cost to develop firmware, and most (all) of the Z lens (at least the S line) does not focus breath - that requires some trade offs and more development time. But overall I would estimate the costs are minimal and even w/o video I doubt you would see a lower price. In fact you might see a higher prices as fewer units would be sold so there would be fewer units to spread the develop costs over (I know cameras are not priced as cost plus).
 

Maurie

Member
Supporting Member
Never used video with any of my Nikons. On my camera's the red Video button is assigned to selecting focus. Red + front wheel = AFS AFC MF and Red + rear wheel = Pin Centre Wide etc

Might be because after a lot of my lifetime spent working as a cinematographer using Arriflex's, and later Betacams etc. If I wanted video I'd use a video camera.
Got a few old monsters in the back somewhere.

A nice little Z still camera is my retirement ...


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