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GEAR TESTS: Nikon Z7 Underwater Camera Review

Nick Donlau

Nick Donlou

Backscatter Team Member


I shot the Nikon Z7 mirrorless full-frame camera during the 2019 Digital Shootout and was able to capture detailed stunning images. One of the biggest advantages over traditional DSLR cameras is the new ultra-high resolution viewfinder. Traditionally, on DSLR cameras, images are reviewed on the LCD screen forcing you to remove your eye from viewfinder. The new LCD viewfinder has the same image quality as the LCD screen below allowing you to see 100% of the frame without moving your eye away from the camera. This was a great benefit to me when I used Nikon 105mm VR lens and the Nauticam SMC-1 diopter since it allowed me to minimize camera movement, a big plus when dealing with a subject the size of your thumbnail.

I really enjoyed shooting with the Nikon 8-15mm Fisheye and Kenko 1.4x Teleconverter since it provided me a similar range as the Tokina 10-17mm lens, a favorite of crop sensor camera users. This set up allows you to shoot both subjects close-up like a traditional fisheye and ones further away that would usually require a rectilinear lens. Since the zoom allows you to focus in on your subject and remove clutter from the sides of your images, you are able to shoot a wider variety of subjects. I feel like this set up provides the most versatility for shooting subjects from large groupers to smaller reef squid. Definitely, a favorite of mine when there are multiple subjects to choose from on a dive.

The Nikon z7 is a great camera for the shooter interested in high quality still images, especially macro shooters with the enhance viewfinder.