Category Archives: Gear

New Infrared Lens Tests for Nikon Z

Thanks to some readers, I’ve been able to update the Nikon Z Infrared Lens Performance Chart with some new glass.

  • Nikon 40mm f/2 Z Nikkor (tested by R. Walker)
  • Nikon 18-140mm f/3.5-6.3 DX Z Nikkor (tested by R. Walker)
  • Samyang 14mm f/2.8 for Nikon Z (tested by S. Cella)
  • TTArtisans 11mm f/2.8 fisheye for Nikon Z (tested by S. Cella)

Of these, the 40mm Nikon appears to be the best performer; not perfect, but definitely good enough for most situations. Another interesting result was that the 18-140mm DX Nikkor Z performed reasonably well, which bodes well for Nikon DX mirrorless users contemplating an infrared conversion.

Review: Small Rig Grip for Nikon Z fc

Lightweight grip adds Arca-Swiss plate to Nikon Z fc mirrorless camera

I recently received the SmallRig grip for the Nikon Z fc mirrorless camera. This lightweight aluminum grip also includes a cold shoe and Arca-Swiss style bottom plate. The grip is very comfortable to use, and extremely lightweight. In addition, the silver finish perfectly matches that of the Nikon Z fc mirrorless camera. The plate attaches to the bottom of your Nikon Z fc using a thumb-screw; no tools are needed. I found the fit and finish to be excellent, and I plan on leaving the grip attached to my Nikon Z fc.

Disclosure Statement: I received a complimentary grip from SmallRig to test and review.

First Impressions: Nikon Z fc

The Retro-Styled DX Mirrorless Nikon Camera

I just received the new Nikon Z fc camera kit with 16-50mm DX lens. You might be asking why I would purchase this camera, seeing as how I already have a Nikon Z 7 ii. The answer comes down to size and weight.

The Nikon Z fc, with my hedgehog, Lemmy (350g) for scale

The Nikon Z fc is a 20-megapixel, DX (APS-C) format mirrorless camera. While much has been hyped about it’s retro look (it does look a lot like my 1978 Nikon EL2), that’s only part of its charm. With the kit lens, the Nikon Z fc weighs in at around 576g. That’s less than half the weight of my Nikon Z 7 ii + 24-70 f/4 combo. This camera can easily fit into a jacket pocket.

The top controls include dials for ISO and Shutter Speed. Aperture is set via the front command dial, or you can configure the lens function ring to change aperture. There’s a tiny LCD panel on the top of the camera that displays the aperture (f-stop) value. There’s also an exposure compensation dial that ranges from ±3 EV in 1/3 stop increments.

The Nikon Z fc has a range of user-customizable options, including the i-Menu, and user-assignable functions for the front Fn1 button and the movie record button. There are fewer custom function buttons than what you’ll get on the larger Z6 and Z7 cameras, and there’s no Sub-Selector joystick.

Probably the biggest difference between the Z fc and other Nikon mirrorless cameras is the way the rear LCD is mounted. The rear LCD panel flips out from the side, rather than the top or bottom. This mounting arrangement allows you to use the LCD from the front of the camera (selfie mode), or rotate it to be completely covered and protected.

I’ll be putting the Nikon Z fc through its paces, but for now I’m pleased with its build quality and overall design.

Check Pricing and Configurations for the Nikon Z fc Mirrorless Digital Camera

Nikon 14-24 f/2.8 Shootout

Comparing the Nikon 14-24/2.8S with the legendary 14-24/2.8G

When Nikon introduced the AF-S 14-24mm f/2.8G ED zoom Nikkor in late 2007, it was quickly hailed as a “legendary” lens. In fact, some reviewers said that its performance at 24mm was better than many 24mm prime lenses. In fact, even Canon users hailed this lens and would frequently use it on their cameras via a mount adapter. I purchased this lens and found it to be stellar on my full-frame Nikon DSLR bodies.

Fast-forward to 2020, and Nikon has just released a new 14-24mm f/2.8 lens; this one is designed to work natively on Nikon’s mirrorless Z-mount bodies. Earlier, I reviewed this lens and found it to be simply outstanding. I also made comparison shots with both the 14-24mm f/2.8G and the 14-24mm f/2.8S lenses. You can check out my evaluation video to see how these two lenses compare in terms of sharpness, contrast, and flare resistance. Thanks again to B&H Photo for providing a test copy of the new 14-24mm f/2.8S. Check availability & Pricing

Nikon 50mm f/1.8 Lens Tests

Comparing the 50mm f/1.8G with the 50mm f/1.8S on the Nikon Z7

Almost every photographer has at one point owned a 50mm prime lens. That’s because the “nifty fifty” lenses are inexpensive, fast, and well-corrected. You can use a 50mm prime in a variety of situations, especially for portrait work where you want nice out of focus backgrounds.

Comparing the Nikon 50mm f/1.8S and 50mm f/1.8G lenses on a Nikon Z7 mirrorless camera.

I recently purchased the Nikon 50mm f/1.8S Nikkor for Z-mount, and I wanted to compare it to my trusty 50mm f/1.8G for F-mount. I tested both lenses wide-open on my Nikon Z7 by using the Nikon FTZ adapter with the 50mm f/1.8G lens. My experience with the 50mm f/1.8G was that it was a decent performer, but it was sharpest when stopped down to around f/2.8 or more.

Continue reading Nikon 50mm f/1.8 Lens Tests