Nikon is giving its own Z line of mirrorless cameras a newer addition with the new Nikon Z 30 (available for preorder), and it’s going after vloggers this time around.
Previously, Nikon’s Z 5, Z 6 II, Z 7 II, Z9, and Z fc were primarily focused on serious amateurs and professionals. The Z 30 takes a different approach, giving a higher priority to mobility and video than the others did. If you’re into Nikon cameras and care a lot about video as much as still photos, you might be interested in this one.
Nikon Z 30 details
This camera has more in common with the Z 50, which until the Z 30, was the smallest in the lineup. Slimmer and lighter than the others, Nikon figures it now has a mirrorless camera content creators can take anywhere to capture high-quality shots. That’s also why the LCD fully articulates, tilting and flipping in both directions for easy selfies. Note that this is essentially the same screen the Z fc already has.
To trim that much fat, Nikon had to remove the viewfinder, so the screen is your only method to compose a shot. The grip is still sizeable enough to offer a sturdy hold, and buttons or controls aren’t going to be radically different from other models. One exception is the video recording button is bigger, and an LED lamp is visible to show when the camera is capturing footage.
On top of that, the larger microphone at the top lets you attach a wind muff, though you can always use the hot or cold shoe to mount an external one, too. One thing that you have to keep in mind at all times is the lack of weather protection. This isn’t the camera you want to try using when exposed to rain or snow.
Made to shoot video
Nikon equipped the Z 30 with a 21-megapixel APS-C sensor (Nikon calls it “DX”) capable of capturing footage in 4K at up to 30fps. You can only do 60fps or 120fps in 1080p HD. The body itself relies on electronic image stabilization, as well as the optical stabilization that generally comes with Nikon’s lenses. Bear in mind that electronic stabilization does introduce a crop factor to video, so you may want to consider more than one lens, depending on what you plan on shooting.
Eye detection should be really helpful when shooting video of yourself or other people. It also works with animals, helping maintain focus, even while they move. There are also 20 Creative Profile presets within the camera’s menu to play around with the look you want. While the camera does have a 3.5mm microphone jack, it doesn’t have a headphone one, so you can’t listen in on what you’re shooting.
It’s up to you as to what gear you use to accessorize the camera with. Whether it’s a tripod, gimbal, microphone, or whatever else you have in mind, you do have flexibility in how to get the sights and sounds you’re looking for.
New Nikkor Z 400mm lens
In addition to the new camera, Nikon also announced its newest Nikkor Z 400mm F4.5 VR S lens, a long telephoto that may not be ideal for vlogging, unless you plan on shooting wildlife or sporting events. It weighs a very reasonable 2.6 pounds, and if you opt to go with the tripod collar mount, it only adds another 0.1 pounds. That’s pretty light for a lens that zooms this far.
Unsurprisingly, the lens is weatherproofed, so you can use it in varying conditions. There are some neat features that definitely cater to action photography, in case that’s the kind of stuff you like to shoot.