Nikon Z8 Firmware Ver. 2.0 Released

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Nikon has released Firmware Ver. 2.0 for the Z8. This is the camera’s first major firmware upgrade since it was launched.

This free firmware update adds multiple features and enhancements for still-image, video capture and improved workflow.

A lot of the features added mimic what were added to its big brother the Z9. There is now a dedicated option for birds that has been added to the AF subject-detection options. Also added is support for the Auto Capture function that enables automatic shooting when the subject meets one or more pre-configured criteria, providing users with new options for both stills and video shooting.  

The update also includes Pixel Shift shooting, which enables the creation of super high-resolution photos by using dedicated software to merge multiple NEF (RAW) files captured with the function. With the Z8’s high-resolution sensor, images can be captured at 180 megapixels. Pixel Shift shooting is ideal for capturing the finest details in subjects with intricate designs, such as buildings and art pieces, while providing precise rendering of the subject’s colors, textures, and structures.

Additionally, a Rich Tone Portrait Picture Control has been added to enable the rendering of rich tones while retaining skin details for portrait photography and more functions and operations can now be assigned to custom controls. Finally, users now have access to new shutter volume and sound options. 

Primary Updates: Z8 Firmware Ver. 2.0

  • A dedicated [Birds] option has been added to the Z 8’s AF subject-detection options. In addition to increased detection, tracking and AF performance with complicated and high-contrast backgrounds such as forests and mountains, this option better enables the detection of birds in various circumstances, including flying, perched and even those with unique-looking appearances.
  • The Auto Capture function has been added, enabling the automatic shooting of stills and video when the subject meets one or more pre-configured criteria. The three criteria that can be configured are a [Motion] option that detects subjects that move in a designated direction, a [Distance]1 option which begins shooting when a subject is within a certain range of distances, and a [Subject detection] option that detects people, animals, vehicles, or airplanes within the frame. 
  • Firmware version 2.0 adds Pixel Shift shooting, allowing users to create high-resolution photos by using dedicated software to merge multiple NEF (RAW) files recorded with the camera mounted on a tripod or otherwise stabilized. 
  • For portrait photographers, the addition of the Rich Tone Portrait Picture Control increases options for portraiture by realizing the rendering of portraits with rich tones while retaining skin details. This Picture Control is ideal for the creation of a base image in scenes where retouching is presumed, such as at weddings and for studio photography. In combination with the variety of other functions offered by Nikon for portrait photography, such as Portrait impression balance and Skin softening.
  • Other functions, and additional enhancements to operability and functionality:
    • The number of functions and operations that can be assigned to custom control has increased.
    • A function has been added that enables users to exit zoom with a half press of the shutter-release button when focus mode is set to manual focus.
    • New shutter sound and volume options.
    • An option that allows users to choose the width of focus-point borders has been added.
    • An option that allows users to choose not to record shooting orientation information in image EXIF data has been added.
    • A new [Prefer focus point (face priority)] option that centers the display on a face when one is detected while scrolling through photos during playback zoom has been added.

The user interface has been designed for ease of use and offers an organized layout of various functions employed with tethered shooting, enabling users to freely adjust the layout of the live view and control displays to better suit their workflow. The simple, yet multi-functional design enables intuitive operation without hesitation for increased work efficiency.

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