Nikon releases firmware 3.0 for Nikon Z9, adding 4K high-res zoom video, better AF and much more


posted Wednesday, October 26, 2022 at 9:30 AM EST


Nikon has announced firmware version 3.0 for the Nikon Z9, the company's flagship mirrorless camera. The major firmware update is available now as a free download and delivers many key new features and improvements for the Z9.

For video users, the major updates are high-res zoom and timecode synchronization with UltraSync Blue. High-res zoom is available when capturing 4K UHD video and allows the user to perform high-res zooming, effectively increasing the focal length of your lens. 4K UHD footage is captured in 8K UHD resolution and then gradually cropped to 4K frame size in real time, which effectively doubles the focal length while maintaining high resolution. High-res zoom is different from digital zoom or cropping in post, which doesn't maintain the same resolution. The feature can be assigned to the Z9's Fn1 or Fn2 buttons, a lens's Fn ring or control ring, as well as the left/right buttons on the multi selector. Using buttons permits zooming at a constant selected speed, whereas using a lens's control ring allows for user-controlled variable zoom speed.

For more stills-oriented users, a new high-speed Capture C60 mode is available. This joins existing C30 and C120 modes. You can capture approximately 19-megapixel still images in DX crop mode at 60fps, which should be useful for photojournalism, sports and wildlife photography.

There's also improved autofocus performance. The Z9's AF is already excellent, but the latest firmware extends its low-light limits by 0.5 EV and delivers better accuracy in low-light and low-contrast environments. Further, 3D-tracking promises better "stickiness" and improved speed when tracking animals in 3D-tracking.

Other improvements include high-frequency flicker reduction in video, vertical playback display, additional buttons available for custom functions, auto series playback, flash workflow improvements, display enhancements, overriding other cameras when using multiple cameras, support for FTPS protocol, the ability to reset focus distance during focus shift shooting and full format functionality for CFexpress type B cards.

“Firmware 3.0 not only demonstrates Nikon’s commitment to addressing our customers’ needs, but also our continued support to update products to their full potential for the benefit of our users,” said Jay Vannatter, Executive Vice President, Nikon Inc.

To download firmware 3.0 for the Nikon Z9, visit Nikon.