Nikon proves its commitment to the Z mirrorless series by releasing a new APS-C camera, the Z 30. It features a 20.9MP sensor, 4K UHD and FullHD H.264 recording capabilities up to 30 and 120fps respectively, and a vlog-oriented design. It is now available for pre-order for $706.95.
As the Nikon Z system of mirrorless cameras and lenses keeps growing, the company seems to be increasingly attentive to the needs of video shooters. For example, the high-end Nikon Z 9 boasts incredible RAW video recording and autofocus capabilities. However, it doesn’t look like the company wants to let entry level users down.
Indeed, they have just released a pocket-size camera that can be an ideal companion for travelling vloggers and content creators. The new Nikon Z 30 joins the Z 50 and Z fc in the list of Nikon mirrorless cameras featuring an APS-C/DX-format sensor. Let’s take a closer look.
Nikon Z 30: designed for content creators
According to the company, the new Nikon Z 30 packs the same image processing technology of the Z 7 as well as the 20.9MP CMOS APS-C sensor of the Z fc into their smallest and lightest mirrorless body to date. However, this level of compactness comes at the expense of the viewfinder, which is now gone compared to the Z 50 body.
The Z 30 can take 20.7MP stills in 12 or 14-bit RAW and JPEG. However, with this product release it looks like Nikon is actually aiming at vloggers and content creators. The camera can shoot 4K UHD videos at up to 30fps without crop as well as slow-motion footage in FullHD at up to 120fps. The camera records on a single SD/SDHC/SDXC memory card.
According to the company, the Z 30 can continuously record FullHD videos at 24 or 25fps for up to 125 minutes, while the limit for 4K UHD recording is about 35 minutes. These recording times should satisfy the needs of most content creators and vloggers looking for a reliable tool to capture their adventures.
While Nikon’s flagship model, the Z 9, supports professional video formats such as ProRes RAW and N-RAW (although, perhaps, not for long – read here), the entry level Z 30 is limited to the H.264 codec and even lacks HEVC (aka H.265) recording capabilities. However, this shouldn’t be an issue for vloggers and first-time video shooters.
Video-centric features: video recording made easy for first-timers
Despite the lack of a built-in viewfinder, the Nikon Z 30 features a flippable 3.0″ 1.04m-dot vari-angle touchscreen LCD display that allows vloggers and content creators to easily film themselves or even shoot high/low angle footage. Moreover, signals up to UHD 4K30 and FullHD60 can be sent over to an external monitor/recorder through the Micro HDMI port on the left side of the body.
The recording button looks slightly larger than that of other Nikon mirrorless cameras. Moreover, a tally light at the front informs users that the camera is actually recording while in selfie mode.
For audio, the Z 30 has a built-in stereo mic that wraps around the hot shoe mount at the top and is compatible with an optional wind muff. Moreover, an external microphone can also be connected to the camera via a 3.5mm stereo input jack.
Since focusing can be tricky when first approaching the video world, the Nikon Z 30 features a hybrid AF system that supports face, eye, and animal-detection for easier one-man-band operation.
Size, weight, power, and smart features
Weighing approximately 350g/12.4oz. (without SD card nor battery) and measuring 128×73.5×59.5mm/5.1×2.9×2.4” in size, the Nikon Z 30 is easy to carry around. The body is optimized for selfie-style shooting, with two assignable Fn buttons close to the lens mount.
The camera takes a 1120mAh rechargeable battery (EN-EL25). However, it can also draw juice from power banks or other external sources via its USB-C port.
Users have the ability to immediately transfer their pictures and videos to their smartphone using the dedicated SnapBridge app (available for both iOS and Android). Interestingly, the Nikon Z 30 can quickly transform into a high-quality UHD 4K30 or FullHD60 webcam by pairing it with Nikon’s Webcam Utility software.
Creator’s Accessory Kit for Nikon Z 30
Along with the camera, Nikon has released the Creator’s Accessory Kit in partnership with RØDE and SmallRig. This pack consists of a series of accessories designed to expand the video capabilities of the Nikon Z 30.
It includes the tiny RØDE VideoMicro shotgun microphone and the SmallRig Tripod Grip, which is compatible with the included Nikon ML-L7 Bluetooth Remote Control. This set of accessories offers vloggers a better sound quality, a solid grip, and wireless control of the main camera settings.
Price and availability
The new Nikon Z 30 is now available for pre-order on B&H for $706.95 (body only), while the Creator’s Accessory Kit retails for $146.95. Moreover, the company offers a series of bundles that include one or more kit lenses as well as the Creator’s Accessory Kit. Pricing is as follows:
Finally, SmallRig has released three new products that are designed specifically for the Z 30: a camera cage, a baseplate, and the Fuzzy Windbuster with Shoe Mount. They are also available for pre-order for $69.90, $29.90, and $9.90 respectively.
Are you into vlogging and content creation? What do you think of the new Nikon Z 30? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below!