a stupid question...is the nikon FE a good camera...?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by peters8, Feb 6, 2013.

  1. peters8

    peters8 Member

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    Yes I know that it seems a stupid question...or better...i know that it is a real stupid question.
    "the problem" is the following:i work at a second hand company called Cash Converters.
    There,in the shop we buy and we sell old camera (for the common people a Nikon FE for example is just a old camera good only for a decorative use!)
    Often I ould buy cameras at ridicolous prices...and they `re cameras that I know only for the name...may be because I'saw them in an old magazine (Icollect old photography magazines)...I can't know them when they came out because I'm young...So sometimes,it seems something stupid,I think:is this camera a real good camera if I'm paying for it olny 30 euro with the lens as for example my Nikon FE...this camera looks new...it' black and it hasn't scratches or dents...like new!
    You start to think after meny years working with this philosophy that you love these stuffs,but that they have no value...after all,of course I know that it isn't the truth...but it's really complicated to me!...I believe that I need to change my work!ahahahahah...can you believe that sometime when I say to the people that i'm using that camera they're selling or better...they're giving as stuffs worthy garbage...they look to me thinking that I'm stupid...?.
    They asked me if I don't know that today the photography isn't the film...and the old camera!!!the photography is like the informatics...is the telephone...the Ipad...the ipod...ecc...ecc...
    So what do you think?...Did I buy a great camera for only 30 euros or is this people right thinking that I'm crazy?
    Is the Nikon FE a nice camera or Must I use it like a paperweight?:smile::smile::smile:
     
  2. Jesper

    Jesper Subscriber

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    It is a perfectly usable camera and not a paperweight but if someone is selling it at €30 complete with a lens just nod and smile when they say that you can only take pictures with a smart phone today. It is their loss and your gain.
    Plenty of Nikkor lenses around and the FE use common batteries that you can buy almost anywhere. No reason not to buy it since it seems to be in perfect condition.

    Good luck!
     
  3. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    I had FE, it was working fine and making nice photos. Only one thing - mirror was little too loud for my taste (maybe my example was a dog concerning this?). I give it away as present when I got F3, but it was a good camera. Every nikon SLR that I know is good: Of course when you pay more - you get more, but they are all good :smile:.
     
  4. thegman

    thegman Member

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    30 euros seems like a good price for a good camera. Don't listen to anyone that says photography is about iPads and iPhones etc. Some people just feel the need to make others conform to the same ideas that they do. If they want to use the latest bundle of electronics, that's cool, but it seems to me that these people mix up the idea of *newer* technology, and *better* technology.
     
  5. fstop

    fstop Member

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    The FE is a good camera.Buy it and shoot it.
     
  6. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    Its a good price for a good working FE and lens. It's a good camera for the money. Current selling price for the FE isn't very high though. Often the FE fetches the least amount of money among the FM/FE series of cameras.
     
  7. BMbikerider

    BMbikerider Member

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    If it goes bust after having it for a while, it will make a nice door stop because spares are no longer available. But having said that they are a sturdy camera and will probably keep soldiering on long after the digital equivalents have been re-cycled.
     
  8. mooseontheloose

    mooseontheloose Subscriber

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    I love the FE -- it was my first SLR camera and I still use it regularly. It's built like a brick so it can take some knocks -- I really don't have to worry about pampering it. The mirror slap is really loud, but other than that, it really is my favorite camera. I think there are quite a number of people here on APUG who like it as well.

    As for the people bringing them -- it's their loss and your gain. They're great cameras.
     
  9. Les Sarile

    Les Sarile Member

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    Unlike you I am old, but I was not into photography - nor did I appreciate these cameras, in my time. But I have immersed myself into it and have acquired a few to learn about them during their timeline with help from website like this as well as magazines of the time. But since I don't buy and sell as a business, I likely don't look at their "value" as you do except for a few items like the Canon 1VHS that I bought locally strictly because it was too cheap to pass up ($100) to sell or trade. I managed to trade it for a Pentax K 50mm f1.2 lens which to me was a fantastic ROI.

    In your business, I would imagine you would evaluate the FE based on cosmetic and functionality and keep track of historical trends - such as completed listings in the auction site. I haven't looked but a fully functional black body Nikon with no scratches likely fetches more then what you paid for your. Interesting that you didn't specify the lens - especially if it is a Nikon brand. That may bring back even more then the body too.
     
  10. dynachrome

    dynachrome Member

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    I have three of these. I prefer it to the FM because it has interchangeable focusing screens. The FE had an undeserved reputation of being a battery eater. If you leave the advance lever pushed in when you are not using it, the battery can have a normal lifespan. The FE replaced the Nikon EL-2 in 1978. The may have overlapped for a short time. The electronic components of the FE have aged well. Most of the ones I see are still working. The FE was an early AI [Automatic Indexing] Nikon. The AI tab can be flipped back so that pre-AI lenses will fit.
     
  11. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    I also like shooting with my FE which I've had since, God knows when and it works fine. The only problem I have with it, and it just may be mine, is that it is sensitive to long exposure (of the camera that is) to really cold temps as found in winter shooting. Things tend to shut down electronically. :sad:
     
  12. peters8

    peters8 Member

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    thanks for your answer,guys!

    I can confirm that the FE doesn't eat the battery...
    In my other FE(not the black one that I've bought some days ago) the battery is duryng one year.I use it
    very often...and the battery still works ...it is almost at half of the original power.
    It's almost one year that I'm working with this model...and it`s so simple that it looks like a toy-camera but i know it isn't so!...the constrution of this camera is excellent and of an highter class than the others cameras.Metallic body with some classic part of plastic,as in the leicas or contax bodies.Even the superexpensive "tank" Canon F-1new,camera desi[FONT=arial, sans-serif]gned only for a professional users had several plastic partes of the body!
    [/FONT]I saw an old catalogue with the prices of the reflex cameras of that time...it's incredible the price of the Nikon FE/FM...they cost the doble of the Canon ae-1...and almost the same price of superavant-garde canon A1,at the time the most completed and sophisticated body in the market...everyone,at any rate,knows that today this camera (Canon A-1) presents often or always serious problems,unfotunately:above of all the problem of the magnets of the shutter that eventually will consume up to be useless.
    This Canon has been an authentic failure!
    the only problem in the FE could be the mirror look up very loud...but it's not at all a problem... and I would explaine why it's is not a problem at all.

    his aspect frightened me very much, for me the main feature of any reflex must be the damping of the vibrations induced by the movement of the mirror.
    but an old technician who knows very well the nikon fm and fe told me that the very loud mirror look up in the FE doesn't

    oduces no vibration, because the photo was already impressed when the mirror returns! ... wait a minute ... I'm getting confused ... I do not remember how it worked ... but I was assured that the movement of the mirror can 'make vibrations to photography ... I repeat do not remember the mechanism by which I mean' ... but we should not worry about this.
    he told me that in the FE2 the mirror look up works in an other way...y and that camera there's many vibrations that can affect the photo!
    I hope someone explaine to us how it works!
     
  13. pbromaghin

    pbromaghin Subscriber

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    The mirror goes up, the shutter fires, and the mirror goes down. Only the upward movement would affect the picture because the downward movement happens after the shutter has closed.
     
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  15. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    The Canon AE-1 and A1 are actually an achievement by Canon. They managed to offer about the same features as the FE for much less and with the A-1 they could offer a lot more features for about the same price. Canon sold a lot of cameras because of these. The AE-1 was the best seller.
     
  16. fstop

    fstop Member

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    The Canon was not in the same league as the FE with its cloth shutter.Cost wise this is where the Nikon justified the higher price.

    The AE-1 did introduce a lot of people to 35mm SLRs, the A-1 was praised with its multimode functions. I've owned and used both,sold both and kept my Nikons and Minoltas fwiw.I do have a Canon F-1 though...

    The only problem I know of the plagues the A-1 and AE-1/AE-1 Program is the Canon "cough" with the mirror damper squealing. A simple lube job solves the problem but requires disassembling quite a bit to do the job correctly, the needle through the bottom plate works but can also "oil" the cloth shutter.No magnet issues that I know of.
     
  17. Nige

    Nige Subscriber

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    bolt on a MD12 and you won't hear the mirror :smile:

    My FE was my 2nd SLR after breaking my 1st (a Ricoh) when my tripod fell over with the camera on it.. ouch! Dad claimed the Ricoh on household insurance, gave me the $$$ to which I added my paper round savings to and I trotted off to buy the FE. I must say there was a lot of agonising over whether to get it or the newly released FM2. Bought it with the 50/1.8 Series E lens cause that was all I could afford! Still have both but don't get much/any use due to other cameras purchased over the years. In fact, I'm pretty sure it's got a half exposed roll of slide film in it still.
     
  18. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    I meant Canon achievement is that they could make the consumers thought they get good value for their money and thus selling a lot of cameras. Back then I wouldn't want either the AE-1 or the A-1 but today I am kind of curious.
     
  19. fstop

    fstop Member

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    I understand that.

    One word of caution, if you are used to Nikon's or Minolta's aperture priority control you won't like the A-1.
     
  20. peters8

    peters8 Member

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    Nooooooooooo!!!Are you sure???...I don't understand much about these things...but the guy,
    the old technician did explaine to me why in the Nikon FE the broblem of the vibrations doesn't exist,while in the FE2 it can affect the photo.
    what do you want say?...may be that there're vibrations?...The sound of the mirror i is very very loud...for this razon I had left from this camera until the day that I went to the shop of an old technician (who worked in an official Nikon repair laboratory 20 years) who encouraged me to use it because didn't exis tthe problem of the vibrations, in spite of the horrible noise terible!...so don't you think so?
    Regards
     
  21. sangetsu

    sangetsu Member

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    The FE is one of the best cameras Nikon has ever made, period. The FE accepts a number of accessories, such as optional focusong screens, data backs, and motor drives. The FE will mount all Nikon F lenses, which is something the far more expensive FM2 and FM3A can't do. The FE features a match needle meter, which is more precise than the LED meters in other cameras. The meter in the FE reads off the film, so if you are using the camera in auto mode, you will always get a perfect exposure, even when shooting at stars. If I were to recommend a camera to a person who wanted to learn photography, the FE would be my first choice. Even if the price were $200, it would be a relative bargain for the amount of camera you get.
     
  22. fotch

    fotch Member

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    Not true. It is a good medium price camera, but will not mount all Nikon lenses. Some lenses require mirror lock up and only a few of the pro Nikon bodies have this feature.
     
  23. fstop

    fstop Member

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    Hes referring to the flip up meter coupling tab.
     
  24. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    How can the meter in the FE is more accurate than the FM? If the meter of either is out of calibration then they are off but generally the FM with the LED indicate exposure within 1/5 stop I don't think you can match the needles that well.
    The meter for the FE doesn't read off the film. The photocell is in the viewfinder and and a hold circuit hold the meter reading when the mirror goes up. None of the Nikon does off the film metering (except for TTL flash in which case the FE doesn't support) it's just not the Nikon way.
     
  25. Nige

    Nige Subscriber

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    How does the FM measure 1/5 stop? How does that work with the 3 LEDs? I have a FM2n and a FE and I would have thought the FE was easier to meter small deviations.
     
  26. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    Well it's explained on page 22 of the instruction manual. The chart said.

    1. When the + led only lit then over exposure by more than 1 stop.
    2. When the + and 0 leds are both lit then it's over exposure from 1/5 to 1 stop.
    3. When only the 0 led is lit then the exposure is within +/- 1/5 stop
    4. When the - and 0 led are lit then it's underexposure by 1/5 to 1 stop
    5 When only the - led is lit then underexposure by more than 1 stop.

    That's how. It's resolve to 1/5 stop but only at the 0 point. So one can't say the FE is more accurate, It's more convienient with the FE I agree.