Nikon Z50 First Shots: Sample images from Nikon’s first compact APS-C mirrorless camera


posted Thursday, February 20, 2020 at 10:41 AM EDT

Click here to see our Nikon Z50 First Shots


Nikon's first APS-C-based Z-series mirrorless camera, the Z50, has finally arrived in our lab. Offering an even-more-compact design than their full-frame Z6 and Z7 cameras, the lightweight Z50 is centered around a 20.9-megapixel APS-C sensor -- a similar sensor to that of the Nikon D7500 DSLR -- paired with an EXPEED 6 image processor, which is the same engine powering the Z6 and Z7 cameras. This pairing gives the Z50 a rather healthy ISO range, going from a base ISO of 100 up to a native high ISO of 51,200 and to an expanded ultra-high ISO of 204,800.

As we begin to put the Z50 through the paces in our review process, we'll start with our standard First Shots series of lab sample images. Here, you can get a sense of the camera's image quality performance across its full ISO range, gaining a look at image resolution, colors and high ISO performance as well as noise reduction processing. As always, we have RAW and JPEGs pairs for viewing, as well as images shot with default noise reduction applied and with it disabled. 

You can compare the Nikon Z50 lab sample images to any of our previously-tested cameras in our Comparometer tool, but to get the comparison juices flowing, below are a couple quick comparisons at base ISO and ISO 3200, pitting the Z50 up against its closest DSLR companion, the Nikon D7500, and against its biggest competitor, the Canon EOS M50.

Nikon Z50 vs. Nikon D7500

ISO 100: Nikon Z50 (left) vs. Nikon D7500 (right)
ISO 3200: Nikon Z50 (left) vs. Nikon D7500 (right)

Nikon Z50 vs. Canon M50

ISO 100: Nikon Z50 (left) vs. Canon EOS M50 (right)
ISO 3200: Nikon Z50 (left) vs. Canon EOS M50 (right)

Stay tuned for more from our Nikon Z50 review!

Nikon Z50 Hands-On PreviewNikon Z50 First Shots