What are the Z7 Advantages?

Compared to a D850, here are things where the Z7 is arguably better:

  • Smaller and lighter (though once you start putting long and heavy telephoto lenses on, the body advantage isn't so important)
  • The first S lenses are indeed superior optically to equivalent F-mount lenses (e.g. 35mm f/1.8 S versus 35mm f/1.8G)
  • WSIWYG finder (great for black and white shooting)
  • Silent/No slap mode (and overall the camera is a bit quieter in mechanical modes, too)
  • Live histogram (though not at same time as some other things, like virtual horizon)
  • Focus peaking in viewfinder (but only in MF or in manual override of autofocus)
  • Easier to focus manual focus lenses, by far, due to peaking, rangefinder, and magnification abilities
  • New Diffraction Compensation control (not fully tested by me yet; working on it)
  • On sensor VR works (but buried in menu if no lens switch)
  • New focus peaking shot review for Focus Shift Photography
  • Timecode for video available
  • 10-bit 4K video with N-Log available on HDMI slot (though you'll overheat camera at some point)
  • Better video autofocus, by far
  • Ability to offload images via Wi-Fi in both AdHoc and Infrastructure modes (still testing)
  • New i-menu that's customizable (D850's is fixed and different format)
  • (Arguable) Use of U1, U2, and U3 to configure camera quickly
  • (Arguable) Strange and as yet unexplained application of different defaults in Adobe conversion programs

And some disadvantages, where the D850 would be arguably better:

  • No ability to override automatic DX crop mode (some DX lenses can cover full FX frame)
  • Smaller buffer
  • No second card slot (for Raw+JPEG, backup, or overflow)
  • Buried Metering Mode, Picture Control, Qual in the menus
  • Likewise, Focus control buried in menus (or needs to be promoted to a customizable control, using up one of the fewer ones available)
  • No two-button reset or format
  • Nikon does not recommend user sensor cleaning
  • Worse battery performance
  • Poor ability to control continuous autofocus options, particularly tracking
  • Slightly fewer Retouch options
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