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Huge Nikon Zfc leak reveals all about the retro mirrorless camera

Nikon FM10
(Image credit: Nikon)

A new Nikon Zfc (or possibly Z-fc) mirrorless camera is close to launching, according to a big new leak – and its design is going to be heavily inspired by Nikon's film camera past.  

Whispers about a retro Nikon camera have been growing lately, and now a new Nikon Rumors scoop has filled in a lot of details, including its likely name and price tag.

The Nikon Zfc will apparently have very similar specs to the existing Nikon Z50, which is currently Nikon's only APS-C mirrorless camera, which means we can expect it to have a 20.9MP sensor, 11fps burst shooting and the ability to shoot 4K/30p video. But the big news is that vintage design.

According to Nikon Rumors, the Nikon Zfc will have a similar handling and shape to old Nikon FM cameras (like the Nikon FM10 above), which were the company's 35mm film cameras from the late 1970s.

Like Fujifilm's X-series, this means it'll have mechanical dials alongside more modern touches like a articulating touchscreen. This is backed up by a possible leaked image (below), which reveals shutter speed and exposure compensation dials in a silver color scheme.

Alongside that silver livery, Nikon Rumors says the Nikon Zfc will also come in black and brown (possibly leather) colorways and will be officially unveiled on June 28. According to the leak, the Zfc will cost $999 (around £710 / AU$1,295) with a kit lens and will actually ship on July 28.

Despite the sizable leak, there are still a few big unknowns. For example, it's not yet clear whether or not the Nikon Zfc will have a viewfinder. The fact that it has a similar launch price to the Nikon Z50, though, suggests that it might, and a built-in EVF would certainly fit that retro design aesthetic.

Nikon Zfc leak

(Image credit: Nikon Rumors)

Lens needs

The other big question mark about the Nikon Zfc is lenses. Currently, there are only two native DX lenses for Nikon's Z-mount mirrorless camera system, as the company has been focused on fleshing out the options for full-frame cameras like the Nikon Z6 II.

It is possible to adapt many older F-mount lenses using the FTZ adaptor (sold separately) though, and Nikon Rumors says that some new APS-C mirrorless lenses, including a 28mm f/2.8 and 35mm f/1.8, could arrive alongside the new camera. 

Small prime lenses like those would certainly suit a small, travel-friendly camera like the rumored Nikon Zfc, though Nikon Rumors says "the new DX lenses will not be retro", which raises question marks about how consistent the retro look will be.

These Nikon Zfc rumors confirm that Nikon is looking to take on Fujifilm in making retro, APS-C cameras for hobbyists and nostalgist shooters who remember its film days – or at least appreciate its heritage and that aesthetic.

The Fujifilm X-S10, in particular, is an excellent example of how to do this well, though that camera has features like in-body image stabilization (IBIS) and a huge range of native APS-C lenses. So we're certainly looking forward to hearing the official news from Nikon on how it plans to plant its retro flag in this part of the mirrorless camera space. 

Mark Wilson

Mark Wilson is the Cameras Editor for TechRadar at Future. He writes and oversees reviews of the latest camera gear on TechRadar and looks after all the photography tutorials. Mark was previously Digital Editor (Cameras) at Trusted Reviews, Acting editor on Stuff.tv, as well as Features editor and Reviews editor on Stuff magazine.