Nikon introduced Wednesday the Z8, its latest high-end full-frame mirrorless camera with a mid-size body design that keeps the same 45.79 megapixel stacked CMOS sensor as the company’s bulkier Z9 flagship.

The Nikon Z8 is available for pre-order starting today (available starting May 25th) at a $3,999 suggested retail, a savings of nearly $1,500 from the Nikon Z9 pro-level sports camera. The primary differences besides size and price from the flagship model are longer battery life and an integrated vertical grip and in the Z9.

The sensor in the Z8 has parallel readout paths, with one handling images or video and the other provides a viewfinder feed with minimal lag.

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The camera’s Expeed 7 image processor is capable of capturing Raw stills at up to a 20fps burst rate for over 1,000 frames. The cameara’s subject and 3D recognition autofocus system is capable of readings at up to 120fps.

The camera will capture full-size JPEGs at up to 30fps, with pre-burst capture in JPEG modes of up to 120fps for 11 megapixel crops.

For video the Z8 will record 12-bit N-RAW at 8K/60fps or 4K/120fps; 4.1K in ProRes Raw. It will also record in 8K/30p or up to 4K/60p from 8K.

The Z8 offers a choice of video codecs for various resolution levels including ProRes 422 HQ, H265 and H.264, and will record high dynamic range (HDR) with N-Log or hybrid log gamma (HLG). An option is available to shoot 10-bit HEIF files alongside Raw, when capturing HLG HDR images.

The camera’s Synchro VR capability combines in-body and in-lens stabilization, at up to a 6EV rating.

The camera’s 3.68M-dot electronic viewfinder (EVF) includes a dedicated low-lag sensor feed, and the 2.1M-dot monitor screen features a two-way hinge design.

File storage is handled via one CFexpress Type B slot and one UHS II SD slot.

The camera also includes dual USB-C ports.

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By Greg Tarr

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