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Nikon’s Full-Frame Mirrorless Cameras vs Sony: What Should You Buy?

At long last, Nikon today announced its first two full-frame mirrorless cameras, the Z6 and the Z7. Due out in November and September for $1,995 and $3,399, respectively, these two cameras look to compete directly with Sony’s full-frame mirrorless cameras, the A7 III and the A7R III. Let’s see how they compare.

Nikon Z6 vs Sony A7 III


Nikon Z6
Sony A7 III
Price (body only)$1,995$1,998
MP/Sensor24.5MP BSI CMOS
24.2 MP Exmor BSI CMOS
ISO Range100-51200 (expandable to 50-204800)
100 - 51200 (expandable to 50 – 204800)
Max Photo Size6048 x 4024
6000 x 4000
Max Video Resolution4K/25p
4K/25p
Shooting SpeedUp to 12 fps
Up to 10 fps
Autofocus90 percent coverage/273 hybrid phase/contrast detection93 percent coverage/693 phase detection points, 425 contrast detection
Image Stabilization5-axis in-body
5-axis in-body
Memory Card SlotsOne XQD
Two SD/SDHC/SDXC slots
Viewfinder3.69 million (Quad VGA) OLED
2.36 million dots (XGA OLED)
Display3.2-inch LCD touchscreen (2100k dots)
3-inch LCD touchscreen/ 922K dots
Size (body only)5.3 x 4 x 2.7 inches
5 x 3.9 x 2.9 inches
Weight (body only)1.3 pounds
1.4 pounds
Battery Life (CIPA)Approx. 310 shots (EVF only)
710 shots

Nikon Z7 vs Sony A7R III


Nikon Z7
Sony A7R III
Price (body only)$3,399$2,998
MP/Sensor45.7 MP CMOS
42.4 MP Exmor BSI CMOS
ISO Range64-25600 (expandable to 32-102400)
100 - 32000 (expandable to ISO 50 – 102400
Max Photo Size6048 x 4024
6000 x 4000
Max Video Resolution4K/25p
4K/25p
Shooting SpeedUp to 9 fps
Up to 10 fps
Autofocus493 hybrid phase detection/contrast points (90 percent coverage)
399 focal-plane phase-detection points (68 percent coverage), 425 contrast points (47 percent coverage)
Image Stabilization5-axis in-body
5-axis in-body
Memory Card SlotsOne XQD
Two SD/SDHC/SDXC slots
Viewfinder3690k (Quad VGA) OLED
2.36 million dots EVF (XGA OLED)
Display3.2-inch LCD touchscreen (2100k dots)
3-inch LCD touchscreen (1440k dots)
Size (body only)5.3 x 4 x 2.7 inches
5 x 3.9 x 2.9 inches
Weight (body only)1.3 pounds
1.4 pounds
Battery Life (CIPA)Approx. 330 shots (EVF only)
650 shots

Compared to the Sony A7R III, the Nikon Z7 appears a bit more robust in terms of ISO range and focus points, and, like the Z6, has a sharper EVF and touchscreen. However, the Z7 is about $400 more expensive than the A7R III.

While Sony has a large head start when it comes to full-frame mirrorless cameras, Nikon has a potential competitive advantage in its lens selection. While only three Z-mount lenses will be available at launch (six more will be launched in 2019), the F-to-Z mount adapter means that more than 90 of Nikon’s F-mount lenses can also be used with the Z6 and Z7. Currently, Sony only has 26 A-mount lenses.

From a consumer’s standpoint, it’s nice to see one of the largest camera companies challenge Sony in the fastest-growing segment of the camera market, and we’re interested to see how the Nikon Z6 and Z7 perform.