Nikon May Have Leaked Plans for a new Z Series Mirrorless Camera

Nikon China may have inadvertently leaked images from a new Z series mirrorless camera.

Posting to their company Weibo account, Nikon China included an image of bottlecaps and a fidget toy which have a native file size of 5.9MB on disk, hinting it was shot with a Nikon camera that had a 67 MP image sensor.

Image Credit – Nikon China on Weibo

The image was part of a series of images promoting Nikon China’s Create Camp Live Class. Eagle-eyed Nikon watchers dug deep into the image metadata and found that one of the images had a resolution of 6670×10000 or 67megapixels.

The post is in Chinese, but an English translation talks about how recording beauty is instinctual, especially through Photography. Then it talks about Nikon Creative Camp coming from September 10 to the 24th.

Image Credit – Nikon China

But the real interesting thing is the images that Nikon used as samples to highlight that “beauty.” One being the bottlecap image that DPReview speculates may have been taken with a new Nikon prototype mirrorless camera.

However, since both the Nikon Z7II and Z9 each use a 45.7MP image sensor, there’s a problem. The image was taken with a 66MP sensor.

And one other rumor watcher on Twitter claims that a Z8 will have the same sensor as the Z9. Either way, it’s impossible for the current cameras in Nikon’s mirrorless lineup to have taken the image. This leaves only two other possibilities … it could have been upscaled in software, but that isn’t likely since saving the image could overwrite the metadata. The only other option is that it was shot with a Sony A7RIV, which has a 61MP image sensor.

Unlikely that Nikon would use a competitor and get egg on their face, so the smart money is on a Nikon prototype that is testing a new sensor. Camera companies develop prototypes all the time, that never see the store shelves for a host of reasons. So, it’s likely that the image was taken with one such camera and that Nikon China didn’t check the metadata before selecting the image.

Nikon Rumors speculates that a Nikon Z8 mirrorless camera with a 60mp Exmor image sensor has been in development since 2019. The site maintains, however, that the camera isn’t coming any time soon due to supply chain issues. “My position on the Nikon Z8 has not changed – if such a camera exists, it is not coming anytime soon,” writes Nikon Rumors’ Admin.

“Nikon still cannot fulfill their existing Z9 orders and they will not announce a new camera that can potentially compete and sell even better than the Z9. Not happening. Once the Z9 is sitting on store shelves we can start talking about a potential Nikon Z8 development announcement.”

DPReview even went so far as to double-check a reverse search of images to be sure that Nikon wasn’t using a stock image to hype the camp. “The image in question, which showcases a fidget toy from More Than A Knuckle (MTAK) surrounded by bottle caps, hasn’t shown any matches in any reverse image search tool we’ve put it through,” DPReview’s Gannon Burgett writes, “which means it’s unlikely Nikon is using any kind of stock image.”

So, whatever camera the image was taken with, it’s got people talking about a Nikon Z8 camera and not Nikon China’s Create Camp Live class. Still, the hype is hype, and only time will tell if it yields the fruit people hope it will.

[source: DPReview/Nikon Rumors]

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