Missed it by That Much...

I earlier wrote about what to expect from Nikon in the Z lineup. It seems that things have changed from my expectations and information I had obtained earlier this year. Not surprising, as the ongoing parts shortages and pandemic are messing with everyone’s schedule. 

So: 

  • I was correct that Nikon wanted to get yearly fiscal results out before announcing anything.  
  • I was correct that Nikon would do another development announcement, though it ended up for two lenses I thought were actually going to launch in June/July (they still might launch in July). 
  • Somehow everyone including me missed that Nikon had moved up the schedule for the macro lenses, probably as a result of the pandemic having pushed a lot of photographers to try macro.
  • I was wrong on the new camera and DX lens announcements. They didn’t happen (yet). But I’m positive they will happen, so it’s really more a matter of just how much postponement we’ll see before they appear. I’m guessing not a lot. 

So, time to update the expectations:

  • The two macro lenses ship within a month (and will be out of stock immediately).
  • In late June and thru July we will probably get more announcements. The possibilities include: (1) more Z9 information; (2) the still-pending DX camera and lens announcements; (3) the compact 28mm/40mm official announcement; and (4) new firmware updates.
  • In November the official Z9 announcement.

I know Nikon wants to have more launches than just that this year, but it’s unclear whether all the disparate issues and problems have all been dealt with enough to do so, or when that might occur. With the new pandemic controls in place in Japan, things got worse, not better. I’m guessing we’ll see more products this year than the above, but Nikon’s got a lot to sort out still (plant relocation, pandemic travel issues, parts supply issues, and even silly things like locking up container ships at reasonable timing and pricing). Everyone I know still working in the tech industry is scrambling with one or more of those things right now for their hardware products, so Nikon isn’t unique in this. 

What do I want to see Nikon introduce this year (beyond my expectations, above)?

  1. One or both telephoto zoom lenses. With macro and compact lenses now filling holes in the lens lineup, the gaping hole is anything above 200mm. So I want the 100-400mm and 200-600mm stat.
  2. A new Lens Road Map with new entries (doesn’t have to happen immediately; near end of year is okay). 
  3. A 10-20mm DX. This really is a critical need to keep any momentum moving in DX.
  4. A D880 (ala D780). Yes, this isn’t a mirrorless camera, but launching this takes some heat off the Z7 II having to fill a position it isn’t quite fully capable of, and gives Nikon DSLR owners more time to consider their transition plans.
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