This is part of a series of posts about the Nikon D5. The series starts here.
The Nikon D5 has electronic first-curtain shutter (EFCS). However, the manual is positively cryptic on its operation. EFCS is missing from the index. The section on the shutter says nothing about it. The section on the mirror up control is also silent. On page 302 of the English manual, under the explanation for custom setting d6 (EFCS), it says: “Enable or disable the EFCS in Mup mode, eliminating blur caused by shutter motion.”
So it sounds like the EFCS works the same way as the one in the D810, which likewise only works in Mup mode. To take a picture, you have to press the release twice, once to raise the mirror, and once to trigger the shutter. In live view mode, you still have to press the release twice, once to do, near as I can tell, precisely nothing, and once to trip the shutter.
However, on the D5, there has been a definite improvement. When not in live view, EFCS works like it does on the D810. But in Live view, you no long have to press the shutter button twice to make an exposure. This makes my preferred EFCS operation when I’m not using a remote release much more sensible. I set the shutter delay to 3 seconds, press the release, remove my hand, and three seconds late the camera takes a picture.
Having said all that, my guess is that D5 users with access to a D810 or a7RII won’t be using EFCS much on their D5 at all. Still, it’s nice to see Nikon eliminate a pointless annoyance.