Confirmed: Nikon to make a mirrorless version of the D5

It was back in 2016 when Nikon pulled the covers off its newest professional-level action camera. The D5 was (and still is) an amazing camera, packing a 21-megapixel full-frame sensor, capable of shooting up to 14 Frames Per Second (FPS), sporting an advanced 153-point AF system and offer users the ability to shoot 4K video footage.

But, a lot has changed since 2016, including Nikon’s approach to mirrorless cameras. Ov the last 12 months, we’ve seen the launch of Nikon’s first-ever full-frame mirrorless cameras – the big resolution 47-megapixel Z 7 and the versatile Z 6. So, it shouldn’t come as a total shock that Nikon has now confirmed a mirrorless equivalent of the D5 is now in the works.

The D5 DSLR is massively popular among professional sport and wildlife photographers.

Nikon’s CEO confirmed the mirrorless sport and wildlife camera is going to be built when speaking to a Japanese newspaper and, although he didn’t add much extra information like a price or release date, the move to build such a model seems very logical.

Mirrorless cameras are better designed to handle high continuous burst modes, which is a key component in a successful, professional-level sports camera. Already, the high resolution mirrorless Z 7 offers 9 Frames Per Second, while the Z 6 offers a competitive 12 Frames Per Second – only 2 frames short of what the flagship D5 can currently fire out. What’s more, the Z 6 and Z 7 proved that Nikon didn’t have to compromise on weather sealing or build quality for its full-frame mirrorless models, as both the Z 6/Z 7 offer excellent build quality.

Nikon Z 6 and Z 7 cameras have proved the brand can compete in the professional mirrorless camera market.

Thanks also to a mirrorless design, any new equivalent of the D5 using the Z mount is sure to be lighter – another important consideration for a professional-level sports or wildlife camera. The current DSLR D5 tips the scales at 1415g and, when you pair that with a fast prime telephoto, the extra weight will certainly be noticeable and, in some cases, restrive.

Lastly, the D5 proved that a sports and wildlife camera can still offer excellent video features, offering users ultra high-quality 4K movies. Perhaps the new mirrorless D5 equivalent can build on this technology and shift up to 8K video?

Nikon’s first-ever full-frame mirrorless cameras (Z 6/ Z7) both feature decent burst speeds and weather sealing.

So, how excited are you about seeing a mirrorless D5 equivalent and what other features would you like Nikon to include?