Gonna give FF a try

ibd

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@Robstar1963 Are you me? I've been eyeing very much the same things. Do let us know how the Nikon Z6 works out for you, and how it compares. And if you get to try a Fuji X-S10, I'd also be interested in your experiences. :)
 

ac12

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I think how the Z6 and FX work for you depends on a few things:
  • Your age and physical condition. To carry the heavier gear.
    • This issue gets worse as you get older or are injured, so you simply cannot carry as much weight.
    • Where I used to easily carry a fairly heavy bag (when I was younger), now I am pulling my gear on a cart whenever I can. If I have to carry, it is a very limited kit.
  • Bulk (size and weight)
    • IF you shoot LONG lenses, the size/weight difference between the m4/3 vs. equivalent FF lens can be BIG.
      • Olympus 40-150 R vs. anyone's 70-300, Olympus 75-300 vs. Tamron 150-600.
      • I have an Olympus 75-300, but I would NOT buy a Tamron 150-600. It is too big and heavy. I would not buy a FF lens longer than 300mm.
  • LOW light:
    • Do you shoot in LOW light? FF has an advantage over m4/3.
  • Resolution:
    • In FX/FF, you have the EXPENSIVE option to get a 45MP Z7.
      • I could not afford to buy a Z7, so for me that option is not relevant.
 

Robstar1963

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Hi @ac12
As it happens I’m not getting any younger and have issues with my back - but hey ho I’m going to give it a go
I feel like I have a couple of years or so to make the most of my ability to capture some images - in terms of travelling quite a lot to motorsport events and before my back gives up
The Nikon Z 70-200 is comparable to the Olympus 300mm f4.0 PRO so is a big Lens
This is definately not where I was going with my original thought process it was the huge discounts I was able to get which tempted me to try FF before it becomes too late for me to give it a go
I do shoot a lot of low light which was also one of my main considerations - I shoot speedway between 19.00 and 21.30 from spring through to end of summer and this has always been a limiting factor for my M43
Fuji was a very good compromise for low light and a clear improvement over M43 but I just feel like all things considered including costs it was the time to delve into FF for better or for worse
If it doesn’t work out as with anything in life at least I’ll know and not be wondering when I can no longer do all this whether I should have tried it which is a very important way of thinking for me - I don’t like to look back in regret so here goes :clapping::2thumbs:
 

Robstar1963

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@Robstar1963 Are you me? I've been eyeing very much the same things. Do let us know how the Nikon Z6 works out for you, and how it compares. And if you get to try a Fuji X-S10, I'd also be interested in your experiences. :)
Hi @ibd
Glad to have an ally in my thought processes :biggrin:
Will hopefully be trying out the Z6 in the next couple of days with the 24-70 f4.0 but the 70-200 f2.8 is not due to be delivered until 11-22/11/20 (they have been in short supply since being released earlier this year)
Because it was not actually in stock it was already reduced by £100 to £2299 from £2399 and then I got a one off personal 20% discount which brought it down to £1839 so a genuinely huge discount !
The Z6 was reduced to £2199 in a package with the 24-70 f4.0 and an FTZ Adapter which together were reduced to £1759 with the 20% off so again a considerable discount - all of which tipped the scales to buying into this system
The 24-70 retails in UK for circa £899 and the FTZ @ circa £275 so using those values the body is very cheap indeed (body alone currently retails at circa £1549 UK) although it’s less cheap if you use eBay prices but I’ve got all this from an authorised dealer with full Nikon Warranty so all good :dance4:
 

Robstar1963

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@ac12
PS I never (or at least very rarely) carry cameras and or equipment in bags over my shoulder to race events any more due to my back - I always use a glorified shopping trolley which looks really naf but it means I can go to events with larger gear
My trolley has the benefit of a decent fold out seat too which means I can sit down and rest my back in between races or more often practice and qualifying sessions which I go to more often as I get more space to stand exactly where I want as the crowds are less (in non Covid times of course)
It also has room for food etc !
 

pdk42

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Hi @pdk42
The 24-200 you mention - was that the recently released Z Lens - how did you find that as I saw that as a potential FF alternative to the Oly 12-100 which could be a good general walk around lens albeit with variable aperture
Why did you give up on the FF
Well Rob, it was the 24-200’s announcement that finally pushed me over the line to try the Z7. I’m a landscape sort of guy, so I don’t need fast glass - but excellent sharpness and range are a big thing (as is the image stabilisation), so the 12-100 has been the perfect m43 lens for me. But of course FF (esp with a juicy 45Mp sensor) should be the ideal landscape tool, so the JIP announcement plus the 24-200 launch pushed me over the line.

But the 24-200 was new and on serious back-order so I went for the Z7 kit with the 24-70 f4 to which I added the 14-30 and the TTArtisan 11mm f2.8 fisheye. All three were excellent lenses, esp the 24-70 which I found amazing for its size and price. But it was my disappointment with the 24-200 when it finally arrived that convinced me I’d made a mistake. But I’m rushing ahead - here’s a somewhat longer explanation for my volte face.

  • The Nikon Z7's IQ is obviously and demonstrably better when you go peering at the files 1:1 in LR. That I can't deny at all. But, speaking as a pretty standard amateur photographer, I can tell you that apart from such pixel peeking, the Z7 did nothing to improve the practical quality of my images (remember - I do mostly landscapes). By that I mean that on Flickr, Instagram, my on-line portfolio, plus the occasional A2/A3 print, the difference is zero or as near to zero as matters. This is a point that the various bloggers and reviewers really never fully address. Of course, there needs to be some baseline of IQ (since otherwise they'd all be telling us to go and buy MF), but I think for most people FF is overkill.


  • The one area where the Nikon's improved IQ should have helped me (esp as a landscape photographer) was DR. But the trouble is that nature often throws DR at us that is beyond even the best FF camera; 12-13 stops of DR compared to 10-11 is nice, but if the scene in front of you is exceeding 16 stops, you're in pretty much the same boat whether you have a Nikon Z7 or an Olympus EM1. So you have to do a multi-shot bracket - and the Oly multi-shot burst is faster and better implemented.

  • Once I got past this IQ point, the appeal of the Nikon faded away for me. Compared to Olympus m43, there are a bunch of downsides - slightly bigger, slightly heavier, more expensive, narrower choice of lenses, poorer image stabilisation, bigger files (slower computer), fewer camera features, slower e-shutter readout time, much smaller buffer, more troublesome sensor dust, poor WiFi mobile app, and many more.

  • The biggest downside on that list above is the image stabilisation, and the way that it constrains the shooting envelope available (at least for landscapes). The problem is this - you need to stop down FF lenses by 2-stops more to get to optimum optical performance and have the same DOF as m43. Then you can take away another two stops to be using both cameras at their base ISOs (what else for best IQ?). You are now at a 4 stop shutter speed disadvantage compared to FF. But you have an IS system that's probably 2-3 stops behind an Olympus EM1.3 + 12-100. That meant I found myself 6-7 stops nearer to needing a tripod and that made a HUGE difference shooting landscapes in the blue/golden hour. Tripods are not only more weight and bulk, but they compromise the flexibility of shooting.

  • I could perhaps have coped with all the above, but now comes my disappointment with the 24-200. Now it’s not a bad lens, but it just felt cheap and its IQ, esp at the long end, didn’t match the 24-70 at all. In particular, purple fringing was quite an issue and I had a number of shots where I couldn’t get LR to remove it. On top of that, at 200mm I found the image stabilisation significantly worse than the sync IS on the EM1.2/3 + 12-100 - despite the Nikon lens offering combined lens+body IS too. At this point I decided to return the 24-200 but looking at other options at 200mm, the only real alternative was the 70-200 which is huge, heavy and ££££/$$$$/€€€€.
My conclusion at this point was that the downsides were outweighing the upsides and I couldn’t see a way to get to 200mm that was sufficiently portable. So, I decided to cut my losses and admit my mistake...

Now don't get me wrong, the Nikon Z is a very nice system. If you need the IQ it delivers, need to shoot in low light at high ISO, or demand shallower DOF then it's a great choice. But you need to ask yourself whether you really need any of those because they come with their own set of compromises and limitations.
 

Robstar1963

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Well Rob, it was the 24-200’s announcement that finally pushed me over the line to try the Z7. I’m a landscape sort of guy, so I don’t need fast glass - but excellent sharpness and range are a big thing (as is the image stabilisation), so the 12-100 has been the perfect m43 lens for me. But of course FF (esp with a juicy 45Mp sensor) should be the ideal landscape tool, so the JIP announcement plus the 24-200 launch pushed me over the line.

But the 24-200 was new and on serious back-order so I went for the Z7 kit with the 24-70 f4 to which I added the 14-30 and the TTArtisan 11mm f2.8 fisheye. All three were excellent lenses, esp the 24-70 which I found amazing for its size and price. But it was my disappointment with the 24-200 when it finally arrived that convinced me I’d made a mistake. But I’m rushing ahead - here’s a somewhat longer explanation for my volte face.

  • The Nikon Z7's IQ is obviously and demonstrably better when you go peering at the files 1:1 in LR. That I can't deny at all. But, speaking as a pretty standard amateur photographer, I can tell you that apart from such pixel peeking, the Z7 did nothing to improve the practical quality of my images (remember - I do mostly landscapes). By that I mean that on Flickr, Instagram, my on-line portfolio, plus the occasional A2/A3 print, the difference is zero or as near to zero as matters. This is a point that the various bloggers and reviewers really never fully address. Of course, there needs to be some baseline of IQ (since otherwise they'd all be telling us to go and buy MF), but I think for most people FF is overkill.


  • The one area where the Nikon's improved IQ should have helped me (esp as a landscape photographer) was DR. But the trouble is that nature often throws DR at us that is beyond even the best FF camera; 12-13 stops of DR compared to 10-11 is nice, but if the scene in front of you is exceeding 16 stops, you're in pretty much the same boat whether you have a Nikon Z7 or an Olympus EM1. So you have to do a multi-shot bracket - and the Oly multi-shot burst is faster and better implemented.

  • Once I got past this IQ point, the appeal of the Nikon faded away for me. Compared to Olympus m43, there are a bunch of downsides - slightly bigger, slightly heavier, more expensive, narrower choice of lenses, poorer image stabilisation, bigger files (slower computer), fewer camera features, slower e-shutter readout time, much smaller buffer, more troublesome sensor dust, poor WiFi mobile app, and many more.

  • The biggest downside on that list above is the image stabilisation, and the way that it constrains the shooting envelope available (at least for landscapes). The problem is this - you need to stop down FF lenses by 2-stops more to get to optimum optical performance and have the same DOF as m43. Then you can take away another two stops to be using both cameras at their base ISOs (what else for best IQ?). You are now at a 4 stop shutter speed disadvantage compared to FF. But you have an IS system that's probably 2-3 stops behind an Olympus EM1.3 + 12-100. That meant I found myself 6-7 stops nearer to needing a tripod and that made a HUGE difference shooting landscapes in the blue/golden hour. Tripods are not only more weight and bulk, but they compromise the flexibility of shooting.

  • I could perhaps have coped with all the above, but now comes my disappointment with the 24-200. Now it’s not a bad lens, but it just felt cheap and its IQ, esp at the long end, didn’t match the 24-70 at all. In particular, purple fringing was quite an issue and I had a number of shots where I couldn’t get LR to remove it. On top of that, at 200mm I found the image stabilisation significantly worse than the sync IS on the EM1.2/3 + 12-100 - despite the Nikon lens offering combined lens+body IS too. At this point I decided to return the 24-200 but looking at other options at 200mm, the only real alternative was the 70-200 which is huge, heavy and ££££/$$$$/€€€€.
My conclusion at this point was that the downsides were outweighing the upsides and I couldn’t see a way to get to 200mm that was sufficiently portable. So, I decided to cut my losses and admit my mistake...

Now don't get me wrong, the Nikon Z is a very nice system. If you need the IQ it delivers, need to shoot in low light at high ISO, or demand shallower DOF then it's a great choice. But you need to ask yourself whether you really need any of those because they come with their own set of compromises and limitations.
Hi @pdk42
Many thanks for the very thorough reply which I and no doubt many others here will appreciate when considering changing or supplimenting their equipment
Some reports I’ve seen on the 24-200 are very good but it’s nice to get a more down to earth appraisal from someone like yourself here - like you I saw this as a very viable alternative to the 12-100 f4.0 but with better IQ with FF sensor. May try it anyway when I can as I obviously cant lug a 70-200 around as a walkaround general use lens !
I don’t know whether going for the Z6 rather than the Z7 would have been better for you ?
(I think it has slightly better DR and Low light performance)
Im quite surprised at how much worse you found the IS on the Z but there again we tend to take the Olympus system for granted
 

pdk42

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Hi @pdk42
Many thanks for the very thorough reply which I and no doubt many others here will appreciate when considering changing or supplimenting their equipment
Some reports I’ve seen on the 24-200 are very good but it’s nice to get a more down to earth appraisal from someone like yourself here - like you I saw this as a very viable alternative to the 12-100 f4.0 but with better IQ with FF sensor. May try it anyway when I can as I obviously cant lug a 70-200 around as a walkaround general use lens !
I don’t know whether going for the Z6 rather than the Z7 would have been better for you ?
(I think it has slightly better DR and Low light performance)
Im quite surprised at how much worse you found the IS on the Z but there again we tend to take the Olympus system for granted
Reviews of the 24-200 are generally positive and it’s this that convinced me to go ahead. I think the biggest part of my disappointment was comparing it to the 12-100 - whose build and consistent wide open performance across the focal length range are quite remarkable. You don’t feel in any way that you’re compromising IQ by using it in preference to a decent prime - it’s a “Pro” lens (I hate that term, but it seems reasonable to use it here!).

By contrast, the 24-200 is just “ok”. It’s fine for walk around use and casual shooting, but when you’re paying top dollar for top kit in the pursuit of top quality results, that little voice in the back of your head keeps saying “this isn’t a top quality lens”. It’s probably as much psychological as anything else, but there it is ! Ultimately, it’s just not an ideal landscape lens for the Z system whereas the 12-100 is an excellent landscape lens for m43.
 

Robstar1963

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Thinking ahead to next year and the (hopefully) new Motorsports season I will have the 70-200 f2.8 with the Z6
This will be fine for shorter subject distances at some of tracks I go to and will be more than enough for shooting from the infield at Speedway assuming it goes ahead
For longer subject distances however I will need much more reach

I have two alternative scenarios to address the need for longer reach provided by the Z system
1. I can use a (very highly rated) 1.4 or even 2.0 x Z TC at Circa £600 - a lot but should be able to source cheaper used by then and in any case a lot cheaper than an additional lens or

2. I can buy a Z50 APSC body (With exactly the same Z lens mount to attach to the 70-200 which will have a similar multiplication factor to the 1.4 TC and would give me the advantage of a second body - possibly at a similar price (used) to the TC and again much cheaper than another lens

3. I can use M43 for longer focal lengths which I’ll probably still be using for even longer reach in any case ie my PL 200 f2.8 (for 400mm equivalent)

The second body option would seem to be the better choice and would make use of the (apparent) image quality of the 70-200
The Z50 seems to produce good results in its own right and I assume would produce very good results with the 70-200 at equivalent of 140-300

Just throwing this out there in case it’s of interest to others
 

Robstar1963

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The scary bit - Panasonic 35-100 f2.8 ii (X)
vs Focal Length (field of view) Equivalent Nikon Z 70-200 f2.8 :crying::crying::crying:

A33A1292-40FB-4D0A-BFF3-24FC91BEF4AC.jpeg
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jbruce

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Rob,
In reference to your comment:
"I’m not expecting too much with regard to the CAF but I’m not greedy and as long as I go home with a few keepers each time I’ll be happy and I’m used to Olympus CAF which isn’t brilliant."
You might check the following video on youtube from Robin Wong,
It covers a seldom used, little-known Olympus feature called cluster focus. I first read about cluster focus in the following blog by Thomas Stirr. https://smallsensorphotography.com/ducks-using-cluster-area-c-af
John
 

ac12

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I agree. Shoot while you can.
I past that point, so I had to drop from APC-C to m4/3, to reduce the carry weight of my kit.
I would have loved a 70-200/2.8, but those days has past. I shoot field sports (football, soccer and lacrosse) with the half lighter 70-200/4 lens. All the other sports I shoot with the lighter EM1.

The Nikon 24-200 is not a pro grade lens, so it should not be compared to the Olympus 12-100 for IQ.
Think of the 24-200 like the Olympus 12-200, or 14-150, a good non-pro super zoom. It would make a nice travel lens, so you don't have to carry your usual array of lenses.
When I travel, I leave my big/heavy Olympus pro lenses at home, and take the smaller/lighter non-pro lenses.

The idea of getting a Z50 instead of a 1.4x TC, is an interesting one.
In reverse, I thought about the loss of reach if I put my 70-200, that I shoot on my DX D7200, onto a FX/FF D750. Because there have been many times when I wish I had more reach than the 70-200.

Yeah, that comparison of the Panasonic 35-100/2.8 and the Nikon 70-200/2.8 is what I tell people. With the tele lens, the FF lenses get BIG.
And if you want that f/2.8 aperture, there is an absolute min size of the objective lens, which will define the min diameter of the lens.
FL / f-stop = min objective lens diameter.​
200mm / f/2.8 = 71.4mm​
100mm / f/2.8 = 35.7mm​
So while you can make a zoom smaller, for storage, by making it an extending zoom, as Canon did with their R 70-200/2.8, you cannot make the diameter smaller, and keep the aperture (f/stop) the same.
 
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If you edit in post a LOT and require a larger shooting envelope from shallow DOF to extended diffraction limit, and 2 stops lower light capacity, then FF has distinct, observable advantages. The 2-4 stops of shadow development for the newer sensors is worth it for many, as can be the higher resolution. But once you get 20MP on the subject as with an R6 or m43, are happy with light editing, and especially of sharing online, then any ILC format works well.
 

SpecFoto

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.......
I know @ijm5012 has both a D500 and a Z6 and only tends to use the D500 for his motorsports - not sure if this is because the Z6 is only suitable for other genres and is not suitable at all for MSports ?
In any case I’ve ‘made my bed and will have to sleep in it‘ and will have to give it my best shot
I saw some motocross images on FB today which shows at least some promise so fingers crossed :crying: :2thumbs::doh: ?
The D500, although now 4-1/2 years old, is still the 2nd best fast action camera out there, just behind the Sony A9/A9II in most tests (excluding the $6,000 Nikon/Canon top of the line bodies). It has the same AF system that is in the D5, but with the added reach that the DX format brings. I am using 2 Nikon lenses that are both 15 years or older designs, the 300 f4 AF-S and 70-200 f2.8VR (ver 1) and It is simply amazing just how good it focuses for fast action. Nikon, as I mentioned before, choose not to put it excellent AF-C system into the Z bodies, and they have paid for it. But supposedly the latest FW update helped a lot, you should ask @ijm5012 what improvements he saw with this latest update. And you can always just shoot AF-S and pan, which I am sure you are very good at, having used the EM1 for motorsports....:laugh:
 

pdk42

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Given that the AF technology and software are completely different between a DSLR and a mirrorless camera, I don't think it's a case of Nikon "choosing" not to put its older and excellent CAF into the Z. It's a question of struggling with the engineering to get it right. How long have Oly been trying to make it work as well as Nikon?
 

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I've read through this and have a question. You state that you've already sold some of your M4/3 gear and you'll be keeping some to go along with your new system, but I don't see where you've said what you intend to keep. Perhaps I just missed it.

I'm sure you've thought it through and are planning to keep some specific gear for specific reasons. I am interested to know what that gear is. Body, lenses, etc. Which do you feel are those you just can't give up?
 

Robstar1963

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I've read through this and have a question. You state that you've already sold some of your M4/3 gear and you'll be keeping some to go along with your new system, but I don't see where you've said what you intend to keep. Perhaps I just missed it.

I'm sure you've thought it through and are planning to keep some specific gear for specific reasons. I am interested to know what that gear is. Body, lenses, etc. Which do you feel are those you just can't give up?

Hi @Brownie
Early days yet especially looking at the comparative size of that 70-200 :roflmao:
It’s currently pouring with rain here so no opportunity or motivation to get out and about with the Z6

In any case I haven’t opened it yet as ive been pre occupied with a job interview which took place today
I was given redundancy notice for 31/10/20 from my current job (terminates at the end of furlough)
I’ve only just got home from the interview !
Didnt want to open the Nikon until the interview was done

It was with a previous employer but couldn’t take for granted - but got the job starting Monday - he had my new contract with him in an envelope and gave me the job on the spot :dance4::dance4::dance4::dance4::drinks::drinks::drinks:

Did mention a couple of things above somewhere ref my M43 kit but anyway:-
Am going to keep my PL200mm f2.8 as this is nothing short of a stunning lens for sharpness, clarity and contrast, along with my EM1/2 body purchased on the free f1.2 offer.

Nikon FF super telephoto lenses would almost certainly be a step too far with regard to size and weight 🥴 ( Edit and certainly with regard to cost !!!)

I did like the EM1X with further limited use this year but was sold recently pending this decision and wanting to reduce my M43 investment

I also have an as yet unused 12-100 f4.0 - am debating getting the Nikon Z 23-200 to replace this but unsure following comments by @pdk42 who didn’t rate it but may not be too critical about it but will need to try out the system before deciding

Have the as yet Unused free with EM1/2 Olympus 45mm f1.2 as I was keeping this mint pending my decision with other formats as I can’t afford to keep everything. Pending my experience with the Z6

Also have an unused 300mm f4.0 PRO purchased at the beginning of Covid restrictions pending use with MSports but as events have been very much restricted decided to keep this unused pending the worldwide situation getting better. Have had no opportunity to use this at all so this will probably be going and will consider a 1.4 TC for the PL200 for near equivalent reach and aperture (With little loss in image quality)

I’d been given redundancy notice a while ago and since had been asked by a friend to shoot a set of family photos and perhaps her wedding

As a result and with a view to securing some income if I became unemployed which until recently has been an unfortunate prospect I was considering branching out into paid photography doing portraits, pet photos and whatever
Rightly or wrongly I considered it would be beneficial to have a full frame camera for this purpose so that was part of my recent decision making process

Now that I have secured a job with someone who I’ve worked for before (so feels like a secure position regardless of Covid) I probably won’t be branching out in this way
I will still be doing my friend’s family pictures and perhaps her wedding (date unknown) and look forward to using the Z6 for this - I’m currently assuming that the 24-70 f4.0 will produce acceptable results but also considering using the 45mm f1.2

Regardless of my situation changing I still want to go forward with the FF system as the above was not my only motivation as I’ve considered FF before and more so recently

Ive considered trying out DSLRs in the past but they didn’t really grab me so haven’t strayed from mirrorless having only tried out the Fuji X system last year which I really enjoyed
I would definitely consider that system again but trying out something different is attractive

I didn’t want to have missed at least trying out FF and I’m pretty sure I will be happy with the image quality and low light for speedway for example if it goes ahead in 2021
The focussing ability for fast action of my chosen camera is the main unknown quantity (along with the size and weight of the 70-200 f2.8 !)

I had decided to go M43 only this year due to financial considerations and got rid of my Fuji system

To be honest if the JIP takeover had been announced around the time that I made that decision I would probably have gone the other way and gone all out with Fuji to be on the safe side despite my continuing enthusiasm for M43 as the JIP takeover has nevertheless affected my confidence in the M43 system

The JIP situation has encouraged me to try another system as I don’t feel that having too much investment in M43 is prudent

Spreading my eggs into two baskets again perhaps only in the short term at least pending another decision on which way to go would seem to be sensible and I’ve spread the cost of the investment into FF by paying half now with half to pay in 12 months time and again having minimised the risk with the discounts

:drinks:
 
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