Nikon Z6 and Z7 mirrorless

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The D500 is an outstanding camera. The Z6 in comparison to it falls short in a number of categories. But the Z6 is a good camera with outstanding lenses. Enjoy.
And on the flip side betters it in others (y)
 
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The video capability of the Z6; it's so incredible I don't understand it! N-Log? What do you mean, N-Log??? I don't even understand what that means!!!!

What I do know, is that I played some video footage (only internally recorded, so not the out and out best quality by far) through our telly, and it was stunning, like something done on proper professional kit, just amazing. And that was just playing about, not even trying. I may have the opportunity (if and when this bloody virus gets under manners) to shoot some video with some other bods, so to have the piece of kit which allows near enough professional quality video, is fantastic. I bought the Z6 as a stills cam only, never even considered video at all. I'm more than happy with the value I've got from it, just for that. To have all that extra potential as well, that's just unbeatable.
 
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And on the flip side betters it in others (y)
True, that's why I said the Z6 falls short in "a number of categories" and not "all categories". I only have a Z6 now having sold my D500 and more recently my D850. So although it's not really comparable to either of them (One being crop and the other being the best DSLR ever made) I find it fits my needs well enough to use it.
 
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True, that's why I said the Z6 falls short in "a number of categories" and not "all categories"
But why bother mentioning it? The D500 'falls short' in a number of categories as well. It's like comparing apples and pears.
 
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Because he looks to be moving from the D500 to the Z6 and will most likely compare them once he has tried out the Z6. Many on here are very defensive about the Z series line up. While I enjoy using it I fully understand its short comings and although I've shot Nikon for many years, I'd consider myself someone who can accept criticism on Nikon products.
 
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We have tried a few mirrorless cameras in anger, including a Nikon

What strikes me is the EFV is great when it's really bright, it's like using a loupe. But it's really confusing in real life where the brightness is kind of fixed vs the real world.

With a slr, you see what the real world looks like through the viewfinder. I don't need the crutch of wysiwyg, but I font need to be confused with a repersentation of the real world either. Exposures were off when using the EVF, but OK when setting camera manually after just looking around me

My second issue is that in the dark, the focusing doesn't compare to my DSLRs

Since I spend my night times shooting wedding parties, often outside with little light, for the moment the D5 stays in the bag, as that seems to always nail focus, whenever there is anything ightly visible to focus on
 
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Because he looks to be moving from the D500 to the Z6 and will most likely compare them once he has tried out the Z6. Many on here are very defensive about the Z series line up. While I enjoy using it I fully understand its short comings and although I've shot Nikon for many years, I'd consider myself someone who can accept criticism on Nikon products.
Same here. But it's a bit weird to talk about a camera someone is moving to, as 'falling short'. I think most people would say something more like 'it doesn't do x so well, but it's better at y, or z'. See what I mean? I don't think it's 'defensive' to query why someone would be seemingly negative about something, without at least giving some balance. Especially when the product in question has many very strong features.
 

Stephen L

I asked a Stupid Question Once...
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Because he looks to be moving from the D500 to the Z6 and will most likely compare them once he has tried out the Z6. Many on here are very defensive about the Z series line up. While I enjoy using it I fully understand its short comings and although I've shot Nikon for many years, I'd consider myself someone who can accept criticism on Nikon products.
Every camera - yes, including my Z6 - falls short in some ways, and excels in others. The thing is to discover what those shortfalls are (if possible) and decide if they apply to your photography.
 
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We have tried a few mirrorless cameras in anger, including a Nikon

What strikes me is the EFV is great when it's really bright, it's like using a loupe. But it's really confusing in real life where the brightness is kind of fixed vs the real world.

With a slr, you see what the real world looks like through the viewfinder. I don't need the crutch of wysiwyg, but I font need to be confused with a repersentation of the real world either. Exposures were off when using the EVF, but OK when setting camera manually after just looking around me

My second issue is that in the dark, the focusing doesn't compare to my DSLRs

Since I spend my night times shooting wedding parties, often outside with little light, for the moment the D5 stays in the bag, as that seems to always nail focus, whenever there is anything ightly visible to focus on
You can get the EVF to simulate how an OVF would behave but I wouldn't have it that way. Being able to see clearly in the dark through the VF is a godsend to me, with a DSLR I could sometimes lose the subject as I couldn't see clearly. YMMV

With regards to exposures being off I would say that's more a case of. not being familiar with the camera. I've noticed that some of the later Nikons tend to underexpose (I noticed it with the D850 and Z7) but I think they do this deliberately to preserve the highlights knowing that shadow recovery is incredible. Once you know this, and if it's not to your liking you can just apply a global exposure compensation in the menu setting (not to be confused with the 'normal exp comp' so that exposures are to your preference. In other words it allows you to tweak the light meter. And another fantastic feature is that it lets you do this for each metering mode individually. Like anything, new gear takes a while to get familiar with and to get the best from it.

With regards to low light focussing I do think the Z's fall short here. I know they claim to be able to focus down to -6ev or something but from my experience I just don't believe that.
 
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You can get the EVF to simulate how an OVF would behave but I wouldn't have it that way. Being able to see clearly in the dark through the VF is a godsend to me, with a DSLR I could sometimes lose the subject as I couldn't see clearly. YMMV

With regards to exposures being off I would say that's more a case of. not being familiar with the camera. I've noticed that some of the later Nikons tend to underexpose (I noticed it with the D850 and Z7) but I think they do this deliberately to preserve the highlights knowing that shadow recovery is incredible. Once you know this, and if it's not to your liking you can just apply a global exposure compensation in the menu setting (not to be confused with the 'normal exp comp' so that exposures are to your preference. In other words it allows you to tweak the light meter. And another fantastic feature is that it lets you do this for each metering mode individually. Like anything, new gear takes a while to get familiar with and to get the best from it.

With regards to low light focussing I do think the Z's fall short here. I know they claim to be able to focus down to -6ev or something but from my experience I just don't believe that.
I think you may be right, it's very different., it probably will take me a while to bend my head around that

I don't think the exposures are off because of the hilights recovery, its more to do with the brightness of the EVF vs the image... And that kind of compounds my issue. The EVF doesn't compare to the real world or the final file either

My best results are when I used gut instinct on the settings, and then checked the histogram

I shoot with a lot of flash, so wysiwyg is kind of irrelevant to me
 
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Without scrolling through 127 pages, does anyone use a z6 for wildlife with a 200-500 or something similar?
I suspect plenty do, whether it’s the best tool for the job is another matter entirely and one that will be subject to lots of different opinions!

NB if you just want to save time then the ‘right’ answer is a D500 and 200-500. ;)
The ‘best’ answer however is a Sony A7 (3 onwards) and the Sony 200-600. ;);););)
 
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I suspect plenty do, whether it’s the best tool for the job is another matter entirely and one that will be subject to lots of different opinions!

NB if you just want to save time then the ‘right’ answer is a D500 and 200-500. ;)
The ‘best’ answer however is a Sony A7 (3 onwards) and the Sony 200-600. ;);););)
I'd say Sony A9-II and 200-600mm ;)
 
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I have the Z6 with the 200-500 and use it occasionally for wildlife. I'd say it's perfectly capable, some photos I took with it, can be seen here:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/luftwalk/albums/72157707355029485

As far as comparisons to other cameras...all I can say is that the Z6 works for me and it allows me to do all I want with it...even tracking the worlds' craziest dog:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/luftwalk/

When selling the D750, I also looked at Sony, but I have to say I preferred the Z6 to the A73...
 
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So...I've just placed an order for a used Nikon 300mm F2.8 AF-S II (Non VR). Very curious how it works with the Z6. It's gonna be hell waiting next week :)
Going through my photos, I've found the 300mm/2.8 look really appeals to me (I've had the 120-300 Sigma before).

Specifically chose that version since it's the lightest of all Nikon primes and supposedly the fastest focusing as well....
 
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So...I've just placed an order for a used Nikon 300mm F2.8 AF-S II (Non VR). Very curious how it works with the Z6. It's gonna be hell waiting next week :)
Going through my photos, I've found the 300mm/2.8 look really appeals to me (I've had the 120-300 Sigma before).

Specifically chose that version since it's the lightest of all Nikon primes and supposedly the fastest focusing as well....
Lovely rendering lens that.
 
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I had the 300mm f4 pf and stupidly sold it as it'd match lovely with my Z6. It's the closest I've came to the 300mm f2.8.
So...I've just placed an order for a used Nikon 300mm F2.8 AF-S II (Non VR). Very curious how it works with the Z6. It's gonna be hell waiting next week :)
Going through my photos, I've found the 300mm/2.8 look really appeals to me (I've had the 120-300 Sigma before).

Specifically chose that version since it's the lightest of all Nikon primes and supposedly the fastest focusing as well....
 
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So...I've just placed an order for a used Nikon 300mm F2.8 AF-S II (Non VR). Very curious how it works with the Z6. It's gonna be hell waiting next week :)
Going through my photos, I've found the 300mm/2.8 look really appeals to me (I've had the 120-300 Sigma before).

Specifically chose that version since it's the lightest of all Nikon primes and supposedly the fastest focusing as well....
Hang on, I thought this was a D lens which means it won't AF on the Z6 despite the fast focussing on a DSLR. But perhaps I've got something confused?
 
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Hang on, I thought this was a D lens which means it won't AF on the Z6 despite the fast focussing on a DSLR. But perhaps I've got something confused?
No an AF-S lens has an internal focussing motor, which will work 100% with a Z cam. The 'D' series lenses are from the older mechanically controlled AF lenses, which require a screw drive motor in the camera body, to enable AF operation. The Z6 doesn't have this (and for shame, neither does the hideously expensive FTZ adapter). But to clear something up that bugs me; 'D' series lenses are no different to any other mechanical AF lenses; the 'D' just means the lens transmits distance information to the cam, in order to better control TTL flash. All current AF-S lenses are also 'D' lenses, cos they do the same thing. Sorry to be a bit of a pendant, but there you go. ;)

https://photographylife.com/nikon-lens-nomenclature
 
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Hang on, I thought this was a D lens which means it won't AF on the Z6 despite the fast focussing on a DSLR. But perhaps I've got something confused?
Like @AZ6 already said, all lenses with an internal focus motor will work on the Z cameras (even the AF-I lenses). I received it today and can confirm it does work :)
Need to test it tracking wise which probably won't happen until the weekend but will test sharpness and post those results. In camera it looks great, but need to see it on computer.
 
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So,

initial thoughts are positive. The focus is fast, I'd say faster than the 70-200 VR2. Will try to make a comparison at one point. In-body VR helps, I got sharp photos at 1/40 sec, 300mm and f2.8 (haven't moved from that aperture all day). Another surprise was that the focus lock buttons can actually be configured on the Z cameras to act as lens function buttons....so I can have the focus lock buttons on the lens act as subject tracking start for instance :) I also tested sharpness a bit and I'm impressed by a 20 year old lens :)
This is at almost MFD where it's supposed to have a weak spot - 100% crop of course:

 
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I was merely going by the D on the label I saw on one or two reviews of the lens. Looks like this was a red herring -- and I could hardly imagine that Luftwalk could make such a mistake. Glad this lens is turning out well!
 
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Andrew
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Looking for words of wisdom from the folk on here. I currently have the Z twins (Z6 & Z7). My longest lens for the Z's is the Nikon 300mm F4 PF mated with the 1.4 MK III converter to get me to 420 mm F5.6. I seem to be at a junction now with my kit and what's most suitable for wildlife and bird photography.

Part of me is thinking of selling one of the Z's or just adding to them another D500 (I've had them before, but sold it when I got the Z's). Plusses are that my native lens length then extends to 630mm (effective) and combine that with the D500's superb AF and tracking, 10 FPS shooting and pretty much unlimitless buffer and it seems a good choice. The Z7 in crop mode is nearly the same as the D500, but obviously with just good rather than excellent AF and tracking, and a much more limited buffer.

However part of me is thinking that I've not given the Z7 (or Z6 for that matter), enough credit for being a bit of a jack of all trades and to persevere with it more. There's also the fact that adding a D500 is yet another body to just confuse matters when looking at which camera to take, and it just might be simpler sticking with the Z's ? Yes I know the other facts about the D500 vs Z7 are still true (AF, tracking, buffer etc), but if I'm honest I really do love the handling and feel of the Z bodies, much more than a DSLR.

The other option is just to get a longer lens for the Z7 so that it fills the frame more (and more AF points over the subject might mean better AF ?). My immediate choice would be the new(ish) Nikon 500mm F5.6 PF, but at £3.5k that's serious investment for the Z cameras. The other much cheaper options would be either the Nikon 200-500 F5.6, the Tamron 150-600 G2 or either of the Sigma 150-600 pair (sport or contemporary). Obviously firmware updates to the current V3 have improved AF on the Z's considerably, and we therefore don't know if Nikon has any further tricks up it's sleeves for the current Z's or if that's it, and better AF etc. will be reserved for the new Z cameras (whenever they are launched)

I know i also have my micro four thirds setup, but for the sake of this topic, let's leave them out of it, (as things might be happening to that system in the near future).

So what are peoples thoughts, or am i overthinking this or not ?
 
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I've shot wildlife with my Z6 paired with my 70-200mm and 1.4tc MKIII. It's fine for me but I had the 300mm pf and that's what I'll be getting again when funds allow. Z7 paired with the 300mm pf and 1.4tc would be a great compact setup, anything else is going to be big and heavy. I had the D500 and D850 and paired the 200-500mm with both them, due to the weight I had to sell them all, but they'd certainly be hard to beat at wildlife photography.
 
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I've shot wildlife with my Z6 paired with my 70-200mm and 1.4tc MKIII. It's fine for me but I had the 300mm pf and that's what I'll be getting again when funds allow. Z7 paired with the 300mm pf and 1.4tc would be a great compact setup, anything else is going to be big and heavy. I had the D500 and D850 and paired the 200-500mm with both them, due to the weight I had to sell them all, but they'd certainly be hard to beat at wildlife photography.
A quick shot with this combo taken just now for you.
Through DG.

https://flic.kr/p/2j244AK View: https://flic.kr/p/2j244AK
 
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@Sootchucker

First of all, I'm a bit of a long tele freak and do 99% of my shooting hand held. Since my Nikon days, I've owned or still own Nikon 300mm F4 AF-D, Tamron 150-600mm G1, Sigma 150-600mm Sport, Sigma 120-300mm f2.8 Sport with both TCs, Sigma 100-400mm, Nikon 200-500mm, Nikon 300mm f2.8 AF-S II. I've also tested the Sigma 150-600mm Contemporary and Sigma 60-600mm.

If we're talking about comfortably hand holding a tele lens, you have limited options...300mm F4 (AF-S or PF), 500mm F5.6 PF and the Sigma or Tamron 100-400mm. I can say that I was impressed by the quality of my Sigma at the tele end wide open. It's definitely something you can put inside a bag in case the need arises.
With the other lenses, I've gone through the entire day carrying them around and you'll be sore at the end of the day. I loved the IQ of the 120-300 bare, but the 2x TC left something to be desired. The lens had some issues with AF-C tracking as well. Since I need 300mm+ focal length more, I sold the Sigma and bought the Nikon 200-500mm, which won the head to head contest with the Sigma 60-600mm.

I also acquired a Nikon 300mm f2.8 AF-S II a few days ago since the 300/2.8 look of the photos haunted me. I will test it with the Nikon 2xTC in the next week when I receive it (the TC, the lensI already have).

In regards to your issue. I would suggest that the ultimate portable hand holdable tele kit would probably be 70-200mm f2.8, 500mm f5.6 PF and the 1.4x TC.

But barring that, I'd say that getting a D500 won't really help your issue...you won't put any more pixels on the subject than with your Z7...the AF might be better on the D500, but I would say that might only apply if you're chasing small garden birds...anything else I'm not sure the difference would be a game changer. Your Z7 + 300 PF + 1.4xTC give you a very respectable 420/5.6 or a DX 630/5.6
Getting a Nikon 200-500, won't be difference enough...80mm more won't make a difference. One of the 600mm zooms...you'll start seeing a difference in subject magnification, but they're heavy and clumsy (especially the Sigmas).

Here's a thought....wait for the 200-600mm Z lens from Nikon, add a D7200 in the mean time to your setup (half the price of the D500 and more megapixels).

Sorry for the long post, but you posted about my favourite two subjects, long lenses and gear shuffling :)
 
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So, I mentioned earlier the 300/2.8 look I love...I did a little testing in the back yard today but sadly it's not really big enough to do some serious tests :)
But still a couple of photos with the Nikon AF-S 300mm F2.8 II and the Z6. The AF is quick, decisive, can't fault it really...the lens (even thought it's the lightest 300/2.8) is big and heavy :)

A few photos....take a look at them on Flickr for full size and 100% crops...the last one is a phone pic of the Z6+300mm combo.

Lurking around the corner
by luftwalk, on Flickr

Running head shot
by luftwalk, on Flickr

Yawn
by luftwalk, on Flickr

Dog portrait
by luftwalk, on Flickr

And the combo in all its' glory...

IMG_20200514_210920.jpg
 
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Looking for words of wisdom from the folk on here. I currently have the Z twins (Z6 & Z7). My longest lens for the Z's is the Nikon 300mm F4 PF mated with the 1.4 MK III converter to get me to 420 mm F5.6. I seem to be at a junction now with my kit and what's most suitable for wildlife and bird photography.

Part of me is thinking of selling one of the Z's or just adding to them another D500 (I've had them before, but sold it when I got the Z's). Plusses are that my native lens length then extends to 630mm (effective) and combine that with the D500's superb AF and tracking, 10 FPS shooting and pretty much unlimitless buffer and it seems a good choice. The Z7 in crop mode is nearly the same as the D500, but obviously with just good rather than excellent AF and tracking, and a much more limited buffer.

However part of me is thinking that I've not given the Z7 (or Z6 for that matter), enough credit for being a bit of a jack of all trades and to persevere with it more. There's also the fact that adding a D500 is yet another body to just confuse matters when looking at which camera to take, and it just might be simpler sticking with the Z's ? Yes I know the other facts about the D500 vs Z7 are still true (AF, tracking, buffer etc), but if I'm honest I really do love the handling and feel of the Z bodies, much more than a DSLR.

The other option is just to get a longer lens for the Z7 so that it fills the frame more (and more AF points over the subject might mean better AF ?). My immediate choice would be the new(ish) Nikon 500mm F5.6 PF, but at £3.5k that's serious investment for the Z cameras. The other much cheaper options would be either the Nikon 200-500 F5.6, the Tamron 150-600 G2 or either of the Sigma 150-600 pair (sport or contemporary). Obviously firmware updates to the current V3 have improved AF on the Z's considerably, and we therefore don't know if Nikon has any further tricks up it's sleeves for the current Z's or if that's it, and better AF etc. will be reserved for the new Z cameras (whenever they are launched)

I know i also have my micro four thirds setup, but for the sake of this topic, let's leave them out of it, (as things might be happening to that system in the near future).

So what are peoples thoughts, or am i overthinking this or not ?
I don’t think you’re over thinking it tbh, I think it’s more a case of the Z system still being in its infancy and not having what you want.

I think that only you can decide what to do but here’s my thoughts. Firstly why do you have both the Z6 and Z7? My thoughts are, decide which one of those is best for you and sell the other to then buy a D500 and a long lens.

A totally left field suggestion would be to ditch it all and head over to Sony, giving you mirrorless with top notch AF, and a choice of native long lenses.
 
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Didn’t take long for you to start banging the Sony drum Toby :D:D

Seriously, I can’t ever see the time where I don’t own a Nikon, and I do love the handling of the Z’s. I’ve had them for over 40 years and it’s just ingrained in me. The reason for the pair is simple. The Z7 was always going to be my landscape and (due to the megapixel count) was always going to be my nature camera as well. Z6 on the other hand has the right amount of pixels for a general everyday camera and obviously has better video capabilities and better lowlight performance than the Z7. It’s pretty much how it’s worked out and the 300 mm F4 PF is a great lens and the crop ability of the Z7 has given me some great photos. However as is the case now I want longer.

Of course the other option I didn’t mention is on Nikon’s Z roadmap they have a couple of longer lenses scheduled for next year, so I could just wait until then?

decisions decisions.
 
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Yes, it was interesting reading Luftwalk and makes a lot of sense.
 
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Alan
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Didn’t take long for you to start banging the Sony drum Toby :D:D

Seriously, I can’t ever see the time where I don’t own a Nikon, and I do love the handling of the Z’s. I’ve had them for over 40 years and it’s just ingrained in me. The reason for the pair is simple. The Z7 was always going to be my landscape and (due to the megapixel count) was always going to be my nature camera as well. Z6 on the other hand has the right amount of pixels for a general everyday camera and obviously has better video capabilities and better lowlight performance than the Z7. It’s pretty much how it’s worked out and the 300 mm F4 PF is a great lens and the crop ability of the Z7 has given me some great photos. However as is the case now I want longer.

Of course the other option I didn’t mention is on Nikon’s Z roadmap they have a couple of longer lenses scheduled for next year, so I could just wait until then?

decisions decisions.
I probably didn't have my Nikon slr as long as you've had Nikon gear (I went Fuji then Canon when going digital) but I did have it for decades but even so these things are consumer / pro tools not dogs or family members and I'd drop any manufacturer if something suited me better. The cost of switching has to be taken into account and I accept that but whenever I see the emotional connection coming into it I'm always more than a bit baffled. I care about the badge on my camera about as much as I do the badge on the fridge, in other words, I just don't care and I struggle to understand those who do. That's just me though and we're all free to think otherwise :D
 
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Didn’t take long for you to start banging the Sony drum Toby :D:D
Haha, I knew I was opening myself up for that comment :p It was only a left field, although 'sensible' option.

TBH I still really like Nikon and probably always will. There are certainly things about the Z7 that I prefer over the A7RIV, and if it wasn't for wanting to consolidate and downsize my kit I wouldn't have swapped. That being said, I am very happy with the A7RIV.

Seriously, I can’t ever see the time where I don’t own a Nikon, and I do love the handling of the Z’s. I’ve had them for over 40 years and it’s just ingrained in me. The reason for the pair is simple. The Z7 was always going to be my landscape and (due to the megapixel count) was always going to be my nature camera as well. Z6 on the other hand has the right amount of pixels for a general everyday camera and obviously has better video capabilities and better lowlight performance than the Z7. It’s pretty much how it’s worked out and the 300 mm F4 PF is a great lens and the crop ability of the Z7 has given me some great photos. However as is the case now I want longer.

Of course the other option I didn’t mention is on Nikon’s Z roadmap they have a couple of longer lenses scheduled for next year, so I could just wait until then?

decisions decisions.
I'm sure there'll be longer lenses in the future, assuming they stay afloat during the coronavirus pandemic so you could just wait yeah. In the meantime you could buy a 'reasonably' priced used Sigma/Tamron 150-600mm that you can sell on for little to no loss.
 
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