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Nikon Z5 vs Sony a7 IV Comparison

Storage & Battery

Nikon Z5

Nikon z5 camera

Sony a7 IV

Sony a7 iv camera image
Nikon Z5
Sony a7 IV
a7 IV
Refers to the year this camera was officially made available for sale.
Announcement Date
Refers to the date the manufacturer publicly announced the upcoming release and general specs of this camera.
July 21, 2020
October 21, 2021
Camera Type
Camera Size
Camera Weight

The Sony a7 IV outperforms the Nikon Z5 with a score of 84/100 compared to 78/100. Both mirrorless cameras share similarities such as their release years, 2020 for the Nikon Z5 and 2021 for the Sony a7 IV. The cameras have similar sizes, with the Nikon Z5 measuring 134 x 100.5 x 69.5mm and the Sony a7 IV at 131 x 96 x 80mm. The weight difference is minimal, with the Nikon Z5 weighing 675g and the Sony a7 IV at 659g.

The Sony a7 IV has a higher score because it is a better camera overall. However, the Nikon Z5 has an advantage in terms of its launch price, which is $1400 compared to the Sony a7 IV’s $2499. Despite the price difference, the Sony a7 IV’s superior performance justifies its higher cost. In the end, the decision comes down to individual preferences and budget constraints, but the Sony a7 IV ultimately stands out as the better option.

Nikon Z5 vs Sony a7 IV Overview and Optics

The Sony a7 IV outperforms the Nikon Z5 in optics with a score of 85/100 compared to the Nikon Z5’s 81/100. Both cameras share some common specifications, such as the CMOS sensor type, full-frame sensor size, and image stabilization. Additionally, they both have a DXOMARK score of 97 for their sensors.

The Sony a7 IV surpasses the Nikon Z5 in several aspects. Firstly, it has a higher megapixel count of 33 compared to the Nikon Z5’s 24, providing greater detail and resolution in images. Secondly, the Sony a7 IV boasts a faster shooting speed of 10 frames per second, double the Nikon Z5’s 4.5, allowing for better capture of fast-moving subjects. Furthermore, the Sony a7 IV utilizes the advanced Bionz XR processor, contributing to its overall better performance in optics.

Despite its lower score, the Nikon Z5 has some merits. It features the Nikon Z lens mount, which is compatible with a range of high-quality lenses. However, the Sony a7 IV also offers a versatile lens mount with the Sony FE mount. Thus, both cameras provide flexibility in lens choices.

When comparing the optics of these two cameras, the Sony a7 IV emerges as the superior choice due to its higher megapixel count and faster shooting speed. While the Nikon Z5 holds its own with a respectable score and the Nikon Z lens mount, the Sony a7 IV’s advantages make it a more compelling option for those seeking better optical performance.

The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
24 MP
33 MP
Image Resolution
Image resolution is measured in pixels and megapixels, width by height. The higher the number, the higher its resolution.
6016 x 4016 px
7008 x 4672 px
Sensor Type
The camera sensor captures light and records the image. Sensors vary in physical size, the number of pixels, and quality.
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
23.9 x 35.9 mm
23.8 x 35.6 mm
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
Full Frame
Full Frame
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
4.5 fps
10 fps
Lens Mount
The lens mount will tell you what type of lens range you can fit onto the camera body. Often the same camera company will have different lens ranges for different cameras.
Nikon Z
Sony E
Image Processor
The image processor in the camera converts the information collected on the sensor for digital storage on the memory card.
Expeed 6
Bionz XR
Aspect Ratio
The aspect ratio refers to the proportional difference between width and height. The most popular aspect ratios are 3:2 and 4:3.
Minimum ISO (Native)
Refers to the lowest native (or 'base') ISO setting. Lower ISO are less sensitive to light but make a cleaner image.
Maximum ISO (Native)
Refers to the highest native (or 'base') ISO setting. Higher ISO is necessary for low-light situations or night photography, but higher ISOs often introduce grain or noise.
Minimum ISO (Expanded)
Expanded (or extended) ISO is a digitally enhanced feature available on some cameras. It allows you to push beyond the native ISO range if necessary.
Maximum ISO (Expanded)
Expanded (or extended) ISO is a digitally enhanced feature available on some cameras. It allows you to push beyond the native ISO range if necessary.
Minimum Shutter Speed
The minimum shutter speed will tell you the longest exposure your camera can take without using an external accessory.
30 s
30 s
Maximum Shutter Speed
The maximum shutter speed tells you the length inside 1 second the camera will capture. These can sometimes be extended with accessories such as extra external batteries.
1/ 8000 s
1/ 8000 s
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
In-body Stabilization
In-body Stabilization means the camera has a certain technology embedded that counteracts camera shake.
Viewfinder Type
The viewfinder type is either electronic or optical. Electronic viewfinders will have a small screen in the viewfinder. Optical viewfinders will use prisms and mirrors to look through the lens.
Viewfinder Resolution
3,686,400 dots
3,686,400 dots

Nikon Z5 vs Sony a7 IV Video Performance

The Sony a7 IV outperforms the Nikon Z5 in video capabilities, scoring 91/100 compared to the Nikon Z5’s 83/100. Both cameras share some common video specifications, including a maximum video resolution of 4K and dimensions of 3840 x 2160. Additionally, both cameras have built-in time-lapse functionality.

The Sony a7 IV surpasses the Nikon Z5 in terms of maximum video frame rate, offering 120fps compared to the Z5’s 60fps. This higher frame rate allows for smoother and more detailed slow-motion footage, providing an advantage to filmmakers and videographers who require this feature. The higher score of the Sony a7 IV reflects its superior video performance in this aspect.

While the Nikon Z5 has a lower score and frame rate, it still provides quality video performance and may be suitable for users who do not require the additional frame rate capabilities of the Sony a7 IV. Its 60fps maximum frame rate is sufficient for most casual video creators and enthusiasts, ensuring smooth and visually appealing footage.

Comparing the video capabilities of these two cameras, the Sony a7 IV is the clear winner for those seeking the best performance and the highest frame rate. However, the Nikon Z5 remains a competent choice for users with less demanding video requirements. Both cameras offer 4K resolution and time-lapse features, making them well-suited for a wide range of video applications. Ultimately, the choice between these two cameras will depend on the individual user’s needs and priorities.

Indicates if this camera is capable of recording video.
Max Video Resolution
The best resolution this camera can capture video in. Modern cameras can capture up to 8K video.
Max Video Dimensions
Video resolution measured by the greatest number of pixels possible in each frame, width by height. A higher resolution means more detail or clarity in your video.
3840 x 2160 px
3840 x 2160 px
Max Video Frame Rate
How many frames per second your video will capture. Most cameras have options for multiple frame rates, depending on the resolution you shoot in. For a general video, 24p or 30p is the standard, but more serious filmmakers may need a higher frame rate for creative effect.
60 p
120 p
Time-Lapse Built In
A built in time-lapse mode will allow continuous shooting throughout a prolonged period of time to be compressed into a sped up video.
Video File Format
Different cameras can record in various video file formats. The File format you record in can impact how you edit and use the files.
MPEG-4, XAVC S, XAVC HS, XAVC S-I, H.264, H.265

Nikon Z5 vs Sony a7 IV Features and Benefits

The Sony a7 IV emerges as the winner with a feature score of 83/100, while the Nikon Z5 scores 72/100. Both cameras share similarities in specifications, such as screen resolution, touchscreen capabilities, flip screen, GPS, WIFI, and Bluetooth. However, there are differences that set them apart and contribute to the Sony a7 IV’s higher score.

The Sony a7 IV outperforms the Nikon Z5 in certain aspects. Although both cameras have a 3-inch screen size, the a7 IV offers a higher resolution of 1,040,000 dots, providing clearer and sharper image previews. Additionally, the Sony a7 IV has a more advanced autofocus system, which contributes to its superior performance in capturing fast-moving subjects and low light situations.

On the other hand, the Nikon Z5 has a larger screen size of 3.2 inches, which may be preferred by some users who value a larger display for composing and reviewing images. However, this advantage does not significantly affect the overall performance of the camera compared to the Sony a7 IV.

In terms of features, the Sony a7 IV is the better camera, boasting a higher feature score and more advanced specifications. The Nikon Z5, while having a larger screen size, does not offer any other significant advantages over the Sony a7 IV. Therefore, users seeking a camera with superior features and performance should opt for the Sony a7 IV.

Built-in Flash
A built-in flash will often be positioned right above the lens. This will automatically pop up when you activate it.
External Flash
External flashes are often connected through a hot shoe at the top of a camera, or a cable at the side of the camera.
GPS features in a camera will include location metadata to each of your photographs.
Weather Sealing
Weather sealing capabilities will give you more confidence when shooting in unfavourable conditions.
Screen Type
Touch Screen
Touchscreen allows you to change camera settings and access menus with a swipe of your finger, instead of using buttons.
Screen Size
Screen Resolution
Screen dots indicate the resolution of the LCD screen by including each sub pixel.
1,040,000 dots
1,040,000 dots
Flip Screen
A flip screen (or articulating screen) is a second screen which can flip out from the side or top of the camera. This rotating screen allows you more freedom to take photos at different angles.
Live View
Live View feature allows you to see a continuous live video of what is being seen through your lens.
Bluetooth capabilities allow you wireless control of your camera with other external devices.

Nikon Z5 vs Sony a7 IV Storage and Battery

The Sony a7 IV wins the storage and battery comparison with a score of 76/100, while the Nikon Z5 scores 73/100. Both cameras have two memory card slots, with the Nikon Z5 accepting SD/SDHC/SDXC (UHS-II compatible) cards and the Sony a7 IV accepting CFexpress Type A and SD (UHS-II compatible) cards.

The Sony a7 IV is superior in battery life, offering 580 shots compared to the Nikon Z5’s 470 shots. Both cameras use different battery types: the Sony a7 IV uses the NP-FZ100, while the Nikon Z5 uses the EN-EL15c. Additionally, both cameras have USB charging capabilities.

The Nikon Z5, though having a lower score, offers compatibility with more common memory cards, which may be an advantage for users who already possess SD/SDHC/SDXC cards.

Given the results, the Sony a7 IV is the better choice for users who prioritize longer battery life and faster memory card compatibility. However, the Nikon Z5 remains a viable option for those who prefer using more readily available memory cards.

Storage and Battery
Storage and Battery
Memory Card
SD / SDHC / SDXC (UHS-II compatible)
CFexpress Type A, SD (UHS-II compatible)
Dual Memory Card Slots
Battery Type
Battery Life
Approximately how long this cameras battery will last measured by how many photographs you will be able to take.
470 shots
580 shots
USB Charging
Sensor scores tested by DXOMARK
Overall Score
DXOMARK overall sensor score.
Portrait (Color Depth)
As described by DXOMARK 'The Portrait score in our camera sensor reviews defines color depth performance and its unit is a number of bits. A color depth of 22 bits is excellent; differences below 1 bit are barely noticeable.'
25.4 bits
Landscape (Dynamic Range)
As described by DXOMARK 'The Landscape score in our camera sensor tests defines the maximum dynamic range of the camera sensor and its unit is an exposure value (EV). A value of 12 EV is excellent with differences below 0.5 EV usually not noticeable.'
14.7 EVs
Sports (Low-Light ISO)
Described by DXOMARK as 'The maximal value of ISO sensitivity needed to reach a given value of Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR). The greater the value, the better'

Nikon Z5 vs Sony a7 IV – Our Verdict

Are you still undecided about which camera is right for you? Have a look at these popular comparisons that feature the Nikon Z5 or the Sony a7 IV:

User Scores
B&H photo video
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