Nikon Z6 II First Shots: Sample images from Nikon’s upgraded 24MP enthusiast mirrorless camera


posted Thursday, November 19, 2020 at 4:47 PM EDT

Click here to browse our Nikon Z6 II First Shots


At first glance, Nikon's new Z6 II full-frame mirrorless camera looks an awful lot like its predecessor. Sharing a nearly identical physical design, this refreshed 24MP enthusiast-grade full-frame mirrorless is largely unchanged on the outside, save for a few tweaks such as dual memory card slots -- a pleasing upgrade, no doubt. Rather, it's under the hood where most of the Z6 II's improvements and changes lie.

For starters, the camera now sports two image processors -- dual EXPEED 6 chips -- rather than just a single piece of silicon. The performance is said to be improved, with the Z6 II offering faster burst shooting rates, deeper buffers, improved EVF and LCD blackout times, and the ability to shoot 4K video with full pixel readout that will soon go up to 60fps with an upcoming free firmware update.

From a sheer imaging pipeline perspective, the Nikon Z6 II is also largely similar to the original model, sharing the same 24.5-megapixel backside-illuminated CMOS image sensor as in the original. Like the Z6, the Z6 II offers a wide native ISO range of 100-51,200, though it can be further expanded down to a low ISO of 50 and up to ISO 204,800 -- one stop higher than the extended high ISO of the high-res Z7 II.

To get a sense of the Z6 II's image quality performance, we have our classic First Shots series, which showcases the image quality across the camera's full ISO range. As always, we have image series with default noise reduction processing and with NR processing disabled. And of course, RAW files are available for download. To compare image quality side by use, you can also use our Comparometer tool. Below is a quick comparison of the Z6 II against a popular competing camera, the 20MP award-winning Canon R6.

Nikon Z6 II vs. Canon R6 - ISO 100

ISO 100: Nikon Z6 II (left) vs. Canon R6 (right)

Nikon Z6 II vs. Canon R6 - ISO 3200

ISO 3200: Nikon Z6 II (left) vs. Canon R6 (right)

Stay tuned for more with our Nikon Z6 II Review!

Nikon Z6 II OverviewSample Images