How Good Is the Nikon Z 6II Mirrorless Camera?

Nikon was a bit slow out of the gate in the mirrorless race, but they are now on their second generation of the Z 6 and Z 7 models, and they bring with them some improvements and new features over the original cameras. This excellent video review takes a look at the Z 6 II and the sort of performance and image quality you can expect from it.

Coming to you from The Hybrid Shooter, this great video review takes a look at the Nikon Z 6II mirrorless camera. The Z 6II provides some refinements over the original models as well as some new features, including:

  • 24.5-megapixel BSI CMOS sensor
  • Native ISO range of 100-51,200
  • Dual EXPEED 6 processors
  • 14 fps continuous burst rate using single-point AF modes
  • 12 fps continuous burst rate using non-single-point AF modes
  • 4K video at up to 30 fps (60 fps by applying Feburary firmware upgrade)
  • Full HD at up to 120 fps
  • In-body Vibration Reduction 
  • 273-point AF system with eye detection
  • 3.2-inch, 2.1-million-dot tilting touchscreen
  • 3.6-million-dot OLED EVF
  • Dual card slots
  • Magnesium alloy chassis
  • Dust- and weather-resistance

Altogether, the Z 6II looks to be a versatile all-around camera for Nikon shooters with a variety of useful features and improvements over its predecessor. Check out the video above for the full rundown. 

Log in or register to post comments

34 Comments

Michael Piziak's picture

Nikon is in the difficult situation of selling more DSLR's than mirrorless; however, the company is trying to leave the F mount in their past as they are pushing the Z mount as their future.

Tom Weis's picture

The review didn’t address face/eye detection AF, and the fact that the Z6/Z7 cameras don’t allow the photographer to choose any AF mode when the face/eye system does not see a face. It defaults to either Auto Area AF or the “large rectangle” AF. You can’t choose single point AF when there’s no face in the frame without going into the menu to change the AF system - and then you end up turning off the face/eye detection!

Troy Phillips's picture

I am a long time Nikon guy and because of this an a few other af things I went with a Sony a7siii. And the fact I needed a video first photo second camera . But I’m really using the Sony a lot for photos now too . I’d rather had 24mp because it’s the best of both worlds . And I like the image from a Nikon better than a Sony . Side by side the Sony is over processed and kind of fake looking especially on human skin .
I needed the great Sony af system for gimbal live music video work . Fast action on stage . It’s working phenomenal . Then I use single point af tracking with face and eye dect . This is great!
I’m loving the camera but still want Nikon to implement this type af system. I will get a Nikon mirrorless. Probably next year when I pay off the 12k I just spent setting up my Sony system.

JEREMY MOORE's picture

That really shouldn't be an issue shooting raw or even adjusting the jpeg smoothing. I'm a Panasonic guy and make slight mods to do that. I only use the raw files for poorly exposed photos as I rarely need to adjust anything

Montgomery Burns's picture

At least he acknowledged that the AF is still hunting in low light and the video AF is slow.

Joe Hoddinott's picture

I hear you on only being able to switch between Eye/Face detect and the larger 3D tracking box. Though setting up the front-facing function buttons removes any need to dive into a menu. I set Fn1 to Subject Tracking where a single button press bounces between Eye/Face and Subject tracking. And set Fn2 to Focus Mode/AF Area Mode where press and rotating command and sub command dials cycles you through the Focus and AF modes. After getting used to it, it's a pretty fast way to jump between focus modes. I find using it this way on the Z6 and now the Z6ii over the past year, I'm able to adjust AF faster on the Z's than my DSLR's.

Tomash Masojc's picture

You can do tracking box with just one button press :) Did you use Nikon Z at all?

Christian Durand's picture

A Sony shooter criticize a Nikon camera for handling and the menu ………😂

Nick Bentley's picture

even worse when what he says is just not true

Montgomery Burns's picture

I appreciate that somebody has finally acknowledged that Z line controls and handling is half-baked. Everybody just seems to be repeating old mantras without even thinking about it when it comes to Sony / Nikon handling. As a long time Nikon DSLR user, I also found the Z6 handling to be really poor, which is one of the reasons why I didn't switch to Nikon mirrorless.
Nikon good, Sony bad... no questions asked, no reasons why.
I also wonder why Nikon users *always* have to bring up Sony when somebody criticizes Nikon.

Nick Bentley's picture

But the issue is what he’s saying based around the auto iso isn’t true. I’ve used both and I’m very happy sticking with Nikon for handling. My D5 is second nature l and the z6 I use is pretty good for such a small camera. I think the issue is with all cameras people just don’t set them up well. People stick with how it’s set up out of the box and don’t work out what’s best for them

Montgomery Burns's picture

Yes, that it definitely a mistake from his side, but I still agree with this conclusion about the handling. It seems to be a well hidden feature, though. According to the comments under the video, even some Z6 users didn't know about that.
That also illustrates how complicated and user un-friendly is the user interface.

Nick Bentley's picture

sadly its a mistake that makes the video's credibility very low. It's really not that hiden it's the same on my D5 & D500 and my old D7200. It's really not that complicated. but then I've used Nikon for a long time maybe it's just me but I find it funny how 90% or more of people find the exact opposite.

Montgomery Burns's picture

No it isn't, you are overdramatizing it. He did a lot useful tests, it is unfair to dismiss the whole video on the basis of one mistake that doesn't really change anything.
In this case, I am pretty sure that 90% of the people haven't found anything at all, they are just repeating old mantras without thinking about it.
C'mon... only six customizable buttons, two of which are awkwardly positioned of the front side, only two control dials, poorly positioned AF-ON button, no AF-C / AF-S switch, no IS on / off switch, 4 buttons crammed in bottom right corner... how is that a good control layout?

Nick Bentley's picture

No, it's not youtube gets away with so much rubbish now it's a false review one of the biggest highlighted failings is flat out not true along with the fact that you cant set the shutter release to record video you can. This is not a pro body it's a £2000 mid-range body your not going to get the same as you do on a D5 be realistic. Also, I use the ones on the front daily with no issue at all along with the af on. I've handed a z6 to beginners and they pick it up straight away. this is why I find it all a bit hard to believe I'm not bothered by the opinion bits about handling as much as just spouting stuff that's not true. everyone seems to love to bash Nikon and it's just rubbish how would you feel if you were a Nikon engineer who worked to produce this item and someone just makes up a load of stuff that's not right to bash your work. As someone who produces work for news outlets and content for websites if you're doing to do this sort of thing, you have to make sure what you put out is correct.

Montgomery Burns's picture

Honestly, that's how I feel about the Nikon's controls. Nikon engineers did a really poor job (as I have explained above) and got away with rubbish handling because nobody is willing to call them out.
(Not really, the poor sales kind of reflect that)
I still prefer a review with one mistake over a review that keeps repeating mantras without explaining anything or stating any reasons. Remember? Nikon good, Sony bad... and if somebody says something else there is an army of fanboys ready to bash him, because is not the commonly accepted opinion. What about Sony engineers and all of that "not a camera company" stuff they were getting for years from Nikon users? Was that all right?

Nick Bentley's picture

Yeah ok so we should all be fine with reviews with errors in that a one second google and find out the answer to. Cool you don’t like the handle and you like your Sony. The point is the “reviewer” can’t even check simple functions on google. This is the issue and yeah I’m willing to defend Nikon as in this case they haven’t don’t anything wrong. They get bashed enough for the failings at least when you do it try and make it accurate. I am under no illusions that Nikon cameras are perfect they are not.

Montgomery Burns's picture

No, we shouldn't, but it is not a reason to dismiss the whole video. He clearly didn't get away with it, there are like 50 comments about that under the video, but it doesn't change anything about the fact that what he (and I) says about the handling makes sense.
Yes, Nikon didn't do anything wrong there, but they did a lot of wrong elsewhere and they got away with it, so for me, as a consumer one mistake is still more acceptable and more credible than a video that says that the Z6 II controls are great without any description.

Mainak B's picture

Burns, the same guy that rants about Sony, ranted about Nikon Z6II. And spewed lies after lies on it. It is a truth that Sony cameras aren’t made that well. A1 will need to prove otherwise. The shutter failures and IBIS breakages are real things. Not fiction. I dunno whether you’re as unhappy about that as with Nikon’s handling. I actually haven’t met anyone who’s unhappy with the handling. It’s not something you can live with if the experience is that bad. It’s a tangible physical experience. The Sony A7C is 1800 USD. How many custom buttons? Yet, look at the breathless appreciation of that body by this hybrid guy. Look at the title. The intent is clear. For Sony: Let me find out what’s great. For Nikon: Let me find faults. Get the Z9 for professional controls. End of story.

JEREMY MOORE's picture

The hand hold of Nikon mirrorless is actually the only thing I like about them(I love how their DSLRS feel too, but I also love how they function). I live in a desert so Sony weather dealing makes it a no go, as does their abysmal feel in MY hands. But I'd love to have their functionality in a Nikon.

Nick Bentley's picture

It's never good when the person reviewing a camera doesn't know how to use it. for anyone who wants to know you don't have to go into the menu to turn off the auto iso you hold the iso button and turn the front dial. So when you just start making up stuff to bring in bad points you are not reviewing cameras anymore.

JEREMY MOORE's picture

Easy to keep a job you don't deserve if you're friends with those in charge

Mainak B's picture

Looks like you have insider information.

Mainak B's picture

Absolutely!

Tomash Masojc's picture

Lol, one wheel for iso, another for auto iso, so simple :) Did he even read manual?

Gary Pardy's picture

How good is the Alex Cooke?

Gary Pardy's picture

Just playin', he's pretty good.

Alex Cooke's picture

D'aww :)

vik .'s picture

Is beyond my imagination why they still changing button positions. Are humam hands still evoluting?

Lawrence Shuman's picture

I used a Z6 for a week. You cannot lock the AF point in the center of the viewfinder. If you turn away for more that a second the viewfinder goes black. The joy stick gets in the way when wearing gloves. It produces no better shots than my D600. In fact I believe that my D600 does better. Look at the FPS change when you go to 14bit. I am not going to mirrorless, my 6 digital bodies and 13 len continue to deliver excellent images.

Tomash Masojc's picture

D600 AF is...how to say it softer, not very good :D

Mainak B's picture

This review is an amazing example of how a biased Sony fanboy tried hard but couldn’t find much problem with the camera. So he left it at “not bad”. In this video, he can’t figure out auto ISO. 😂 Auto ISO! In a later video, he talks about colours being the same as A7iii by shooting blank sky. He thinks there’s no need to see how skin colours are rendered. Because of course we just point the camera to the sky and just get paid. He had no perspective on the excellent Z lenses. He says the 4k 60 out of Z6II is not that good. Must be smoking something fine. He practically moves the camera slowly to give an impression that the AF is slower. No complaints on the Sony not having shutter problems, no touch screen, crap screen, unpleasant EVF (subjective), worse build quality, no RAW capabilities. I can testify that the Z6II practically focuses in darkness. Everyone, yes the focus mode management can be better. But if you can lift a finger, then you can put the tracker on immediately. If you still cry, then you’re crybaby. Unless you clearly explain why you can’t move a damned finger.

jonas y's picture

It was the last machine to overheat under Mojave desert heat when recording 4K, out performing even a cinema camera with an internal fan. Both machine were under 4K 30 setting.

Tomash Masojc's picture

Okey, from old times, all says that Nikon and Canon menus are simplest and best, and when in this review, he says, that menu in other brands is better.