Z9 photo thread

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PhilM

Well-known member
Supporting Member
I was out at the lake yesterday morning with some poor light, in drizzly (almost foggy) conditions so ISO was higher than my typical comfort zone.

While these aren't anything special, they did clean up well in Topaz DeNoise.

Z9, 100-400S + 1.4xTC
1/1600, F8, ISO 10,000, 560mm


Z9, 100-400S + 1.4xTC
1/1600, F8, ISO 12,800, 560mm
 

Darwin

Well-known member
Supporting Member
No notable images with my Z9 yet, just lots of experimenting. This morning shooting shorebirds was such a new experience. In the past tracking these little guys with group AF would be the best option, but, would result in a lot of soft eyes and sharp bills with wide-open apertures. Was shooting at F4 all morning and even with all the background distractions, the Z9 tracked these little guys running over and behind rocks amazingly.
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_DSC2069-Edit.jpg
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John Woodworth

Active member
Supporting Member
No notable images with my Z9 yet, just lots of experimenting. This morning shooting shorebirds was such a new experience. In the past tracking these little guys with group AF would be the best option, but, would result in a lot of soft eyes and sharp bills with wide-open apertures. Was shooting at F4 all morning and even with all the background distractions, the Z9 tracked these little guys running over and behind rocks amazingly. View attachment 30328View attachment 30329View attachment 30330
Very nice!

Would you please share your af settings? Inquiring minds want to know. 😳
 

Darwin

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Very nice!

Would you please share your af settings? Inquiring minds want to know. 😳
Ha, that’s a loaded question if I ever saw one. I have been changing and mixing up my settings for two weeks. Today, I was using AF lock on at 5, my shutter release as AF auto (so hard getting used to not using BBF) fn1 on 3d and fn2 Dynamic. I use the dynamic almost like a single point whenever I have trouble grabbing focus. I was using the auto AF and then switching to 3d to track the specific bird in the group which at time could be a dozen. It did a fantastic job. I was surprised because of how busy the background was. I shot a few series of them running around, behind rocks, behind other birds and the Z9 did better then expected. Some soft eyes here and there when the camera took hold of the body or the bill which is expected considering how short the DOF was and that I was using f4. Normally, I’d be shooting shore birds at ~F8. TBH, I need @Steve to come out with his guide m, lol.
 

padrepaul

Well-known member
First time out tonight, I think I need to adjust the focus tracking with lock on, had it on 3, not sure what to use for birds. Shooting with the 800, used wide area AF, animal tracking. I think perhaps because it's an F lens, I get a large green box and then a smaller box focuses on the bird's face/eye. Assuming I'm doing it right.

1/1600, ISO 1600, F 5.6.

z shortie 1 processed.jpg
 

bfs208

Member
Supporting Member
First time out tonight, I think I need to adjust the focus tracking with lock on, had it on 3, not sure what to use for birds. Shooting with the 800, used wide area AF, animal tracking. I think perhaps because it's an F lens, I get a large green box and then a smaller box focuses on the bird's face/eye. Assuming I'm doing it right.

1/1600, ISO 1600, F 5.6.

View attachment 30359
I would say so!
 

sid_19911991

Well-known member
First time out tonight, I think I need to adjust the focus tracking with lock on, had it on 3, not sure what to use for birds. Shooting with the 800, used wide area AF, animal tracking. I think perhaps because it's an F lens, I get a large green box and then a smaller box focuses on the bird's face/eye. Assuming I'm doing it right.

1/1600, ISO 1600, F 5.6.

View attachment 30359

Nice pic. Did the 800mm focal length give that background separation or did you deepen the blue in post? Can't wait to get my hands on the 800 pf!
 

padrepaul

Well-known member
Nice pic. Did the 800mm focal length give that background separation or did you deepen the blue in post? Can't wait to get my hands on the 800 pf!
The lens gave me the separation. In post I just did some RAW edits in Capture One, then used Topaz De Noise and a filter for contrast color and detail extraction in NIK.
 

thelordofthelight

Well-known member
Lovely image and superb light! In wide area L the camera starts with a large box and looks for subjects within that box and then narrows down to head/torso or eyes. Lock on setting of 3 is default and if you see the focus box jumping around too much or picking a background object then you can try 4 or 5 which makes it stickier.

First time out tonight, I think I need to adjust the focus tracking with lock on, had it on 3, not sure what to use for birds. Shooting with the 800, used wide area AF, animal tracking. I think perhaps because it's an F lens, I get a large green box and then a smaller box focuses on the bird's face/eye. Assuming I'm doing it right.

1/1600, ISO 1600, F 5.6.

View attachment 30359
 

padrepaul

Well-known member
Lovely image and superb light! In wide area L the camera starts with a large box and looks for subjects within that box and then narrows down to head/torso or eyes. Lock on setting of 3 is default and if you see the focus box jumping around too much or picking a background object then you can try 4 or 5 which makes it stickier.
Thanks. Wonder if 3D is any better?
 

O

Well-known member
First time out tonight, I think I need to adjust the focus tracking with lock on, had it on 3, not sure what to use for birds. Shooting with the 800, used wide area AF, animal tracking. I think perhaps because it's an F lens, I get a large green box and then a smaller box focuses on the bird's face/eye. Assuming I'm doing it right.

1/1600, ISO 1600, F 5.6.

View attachment 30359
Very nice light and mood
 

O

Well-known member
First time out tonight, I think I need to adjust the focus tracking with lock on, had it on 3, not sure what to use for birds. Shooting with the 800, used wide area AF, animal tracking. I think perhaps because it's an F lens, I get a large green box and then a smaller box focuses on the bird's face/eye. Assuming I'm doing it right.

1/1600, ISO 1600, F 5.6.

View attachment 30359
I recall that FX lenses only get around 3 stops instead of 5 ? of VR or IBIS from the sensor.......
 

ninog

Member
La primera vez que salgo esta noche, creo que necesito ajustar el seguimiento de enfoque con el bloqueo activado, lo tenía en 3, no estoy seguro de qué usar para las aves. Disparo con el 800, usé AF de área amplia, seguimiento de animales. Creo que quizás porque es una lente F, obtengo un cuadro verde grande y luego un cuadro más pequeño se enfoca en la cara/ojo del pájaro. Suponiendo que lo estoy haciendo bien.

1/1600, ISO 1600, F 5.6.

View attachment 30359
[/CITA]
Gran trabajo !!. ¿Cómo dirías que es el comportamiento en iso 1600 en comparación con tu cámara anterior? ... Yo en mi D850 era el límite. Más allá de eso, preferí D5.
 

Steve

Admin
Staff member
Supporting Member
A quick note about Focus Tracking With Lock On because I see a lot of questions & concerns about it in this thread for BIF. This setting controls how long the camera should wait to refocus is if there is a drastic change in distance under the AF area. So, if a tree comes between you and the subject, this setting tells the camera how long to wait before changing focus to the tree. It also helps with keeping on target. If the AF area slips off the target, how long should the camera wait before trying whatever is under the AF are now? This setting controls that in the same way.

What it doesn't do it improve or degrade tracking when you are already locked onto a subject, it only comes into play if a signifiant change in distance occurs under the AF area. For most, I would think a setting of 3 would be a good balance, if you have a harder time keeping on the subject, go to a higher number. If the AF seems too sticky and won't get back on your subject when it makes a mistake, go to a smaller number.
 

Lance B

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Some Black-winged Stilts.

Z9 + 500 f5.6 PF, 1/1250s f/5.6 at 500.0mm iso160



Z9 + 500 f5.6 PF, 1/1250s f/5.6 at 500.0mm iso220



Z9 + 500 f5.6 PF, 1/3200s f/5.6 at 500.0mm iso1100



Z9 + 500 f5.6 PF, 1/3200s f/5.6 at 500.0mm iso800



Z9 + 500 f5.6 PF, 1/3200s f/5.6 at 500.0mm iso560



Masked Lapwing with spurs on it's wings - breeding spurs for protecting their young.

Z9 + 500 f5.6 PF, 1/3200s f/5.6 at 500.0mm iso64

 

Frank Chiles

New member
Thank you
I just purchased the Nikon Z9 camera and I’ve read some of the opinions rendered on this board. Some were good and others not so good. I think I will reserve my opinions until I have have adequate time to learn about the camera and use it for a while. I must admit that I’ve used Nikon since 1972.
Frank
 

ElenaH

Well-known member
Supporting Member
A quick note about Focus Tracking With Lock On because I see a lot of questions & concerns about it in this thread for BIF. This setting controls how long the camera should wait to refocus is if there is a drastic change in distance under the AF area. So, if a tree comes between you and the subject, this setting tells the camera how long to wait before changing focus to the tree. It also helps with keeping on target. If the AF area slips off the target, how long should the camera wait before trying whatever is under the AF are now? This setting controls that in the same way.

What it doesn't do it improve or degrade tracking when you are already locked onto a subject, it only comes into play if a signifiant change in distance occurs under the AF area. For most, I would think a setting of 3 would be a good balance, if you have a harder time keeping on the subject, go to a higher number. If the AF seems too sticky and won't get back on your subject when it makes a mistake, go to a smaller number.
I always wanted to talk to you about that subject, @Steve. According to my experience this setting depends on camera+lens combination. Let's say we have set to some number like 3. That means that camera waits so to say 3 units (let's say milliseconds) and then tries to re-acquire the focus. If I have a professional lens (10k+) mounted then this combo will get the focus immediatelly or very fast. If I have Sigma contemporary mounted then it takes the next 3-4 milliseconds (or seconds ;-) ) until it will focus! because motor is so slow. I tested it with 500PF (fast!), Nikon 200-500 (quite slow in comparison to PF), Sigma (slow), Nikon 400/2.8 (fast). For Sigma I always have fastest speed in this setting.
I use Auto-Area AF on D850 and my keepers are much higher then with other settings (earlier I used 3D, groups and points). And I think this is becasue the algorithm is very easy. I mean it is easy to develope in software. The methode for DSLR is "take the closest object". The processor works fast with it becasue it doesn't need to make other sophisticated checks.
For z9 it is different because it has contrast-AF but behind it there is still a piece of software which can be optimised, a processor which must work with it, the interfaces which will transfer the information (communicate with lens) and a lens motor which will move the glass-elements to focus. All the parts mus work well together.. There is actually no single point of failure. There are many points.
 

Steve

Admin
Staff member
Supporting Member
I always wanted to talk to you about that subject, @Steve. According to my experience this setting depends on camera+lens combination. Let's say we have set to some number like 3. That means that camera waits so to say 3 units (let's say milliseconds) and then tries to re-acquire the focus. If I have a professional lens (10k+) mounted then this combo will get the focus immediatelly or very fast. If I have Sigma contemporary mounted then it takes the next 3-4 milliseconds (or seconds ;-) ) until it will focus! because motor is so slow. I tested it with 500PF (fast!), Nikon 200-500 (quite slow in comparison to PF), Sigma (slow), Nikon 400/2.8 (fast). For Sigma I always have fastest speed in this setting.
I use Auto-Area AF on D850 and my keepers are much higher then with other settings (earlier I used 3D, groups and points). And I think this is becasue the algorithm is very easy. I mean it is easy to develope in software. The methode for DSLR is "take the closest object". The processor works fast with it becasue it doesn't need to make other sophisticated checks.
For z9 it is different because it has contrast-AF but behind it there is still a piece of software which can be optimised, a processor which must work with it, the interfaces which will transfer the information (communicate with lens) and a lens motor which will move the glass-elements to focus. All the parts mus work well together.. There is actually no single point of failure. There are many points.
Lens focus speed really doesn't directly affect how this setting works. Once the delay expires, it tries to focus again. The speed at which that happens is another matter but independent of the setting itself. IOW, I wouldn't try to teak this setting based on lens focus speed, I think it defeats the purpose of it. If I need a delay of three to keep the camera from focusing on an obstacle between the subject and the camera, then I need that amount of time regardless of how quickly the lens can focus.

For some subjects auto can work well, I've always found it lacked the precision I needed though. I tend to fill the frame and with Auto I often had the wrong part of the animal in focus, so I prefer smaller AF areas so I can keep focus where I need it.

The Z9 uses on sensor PDAF which isn't the same as contrast detection (it has contrast detection, but I doubt it does any CDAF trimming while in AF-C mode). As for points of failure, I think there are actually more with a DSLR since the AF module is not only separate from the sensor but also in a different physical location. There's still all the same types of communication and software required.
 
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