Why I bought My Nikon MB-N10 power grip? As a wildlife photographer, I use Nikon's Super-Telephoto lenses such as the Nikon 400mm ED FL and the larger 600mm ED FL lens. Attaching a Nikon Z6 or Z7 camera using the FTZ adapter to these super-telephoto lenses poses an issue with balancing the lens-camera combination on a gimbal/tripod. The Nikon Z7 and Z6 were too light to achieve proper balance, which forced me to have the gimbal tightened to keep the lens from falling forward, and this presented problems in my photography. If I forget to hold down the lens and loosen the gimbal the lens would fall forward and slam into the tripod - not a good thing for an $11,000 lens.
This balance issue forced me to find a counterbalance to attach to the bottom of my camera to offset the lens front heaviness - such as attaching a small ball head to the base of the camera body, the combination worked but was not especially pleasing to look at. When I heard Nikon was releasing a grip for their Z7/Z6 mirrorless cameras I was thrilled.
Why buy an MB-N10 battery grip for your Nikon Z7 or Z6? Seven-Strong points for buying an MB-N10 Nikon Mirrorless Grip are:
- The obvious reason is to extend your shooting times two batteries to power to your camera.
- Video or Time Lapse shooters benefit with the ability to hot-swap batteries without losing power or when one battery depletes the MB-N10 switches to the next battery automatically, allowing for un-attended timelapse reducing fear of loss of power in the middle of your timelapse
- The ability to quickly check battery power levels at the push of a button and to charge the batteries using the USB C port
- To extend the camera grip and allow full hand coverage without your pinky dangling with nothing to do, for those who have larger hands.
- To help balance and improve your grip when using longer/larger lenses either on or off a tripod
- Individual Battery access - individual access doors on each end of the grip, you don't need to remove one battery to have access to the other battery.
- Solves the FTZ and tripod mount issue - The FTZ no longer bumps into your camera tripod adapter when changing F mount lenses using an FTZ
What is an MB-N10? It is easier to outline what it is not! The MB-N10 is not a traditional grip, meaning it offers no shutter release or control knobs. It is a battery Grip only.
Construction: Made in China but made to Nikon High Standards of construction. Most of the MB-N10 is comprised of composite materials - aka rigid re-enforced plastic. The base of the grip has a standard tripod attachment point having an all-metal plate with a rubberized covering, similar to what is found on the bottom of the Z mirrorless cameras.
Weather Seals: Yes, full weather seals to reduce moister or dust entering the camera or grip. Full rubber seals on both battery doors and at the base where the camera attaches to the grip.
Things not to like:
- Does not include a USB C cable or power adapter. - However, if you bought a Z7 one is included with the camera that works with this Battery Grip.
- The batteries can be charged using the USB connected to a computer - However, the charging times are extreme; 5 hours for one battery. I recommend a dedicated wall charger.
- Takes several hours to charge depleted batteries 5+ hours for both batteries when using a wall charger and you can only charge the EL15B or EL15C type batteries in the grip.
- Missing camera controls (not the grip's fault, but a flaw in the Nikon Z7 and Z6 design, no available contacts
- I wished Nikon would have considered using Bluetooth for a shutter release button and control knob
- No rubberized grip material on the base in the "vertical" format. Not sure why Nikon chooses to leave it off.
Overall Summary: Most Nikon shooters can live without a battery grip and be perfectly happy. If you fall in the 7 use cases I mention above the MB-N10 power grip has a lot to offer and improves the overall user experience in many photographic situations.
Recommended for those who need it!