Canon F1 question

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by Steve Mack, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. Steve Mack

    Steve Mack Member

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    I am thinking of picking up a Canon F1 which is currently sitting on the showcase shelf of my local real-live camera store. I am planning to use it exclusively for B&W work, with a 35mm lens. I currently have a Nikon F100 with the 50mm f/1.8 Nikkor, for color negative and the occasional slide film roll. What has been your collective experience with the camera? I have wanted an F1 since the time I bought my first real live SLR, a Canon AE1, back when dinosaurs roamed the earth. I want a 3-M camera, in other words. (3-M camera: Metal, Mechanical, Manual.)

    Thanks to all who reply.

    With best regards,

    Steve
     
  2. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    I have one myself, a great camera. Get it, can't go wrong.

    Jeff
     
  3. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    I always wanted one too.
    Considering the unhealthy :tongue: amount of gear I have now, I hesitate.

    Only because I don't want to start a whole entire new lens mount collection.
     
  4. summicron1

    summicron1 Subscriber

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    Canon F1 is one of the three cameras the great marty forscher called "hocky pucks" because, well, they were. the others are nikon F and Leica M.

    As long as it checks out, go for it.
     
  5. dtheld

    dtheld Member

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    I bought my first one in 2009 - liked it so much that I just bought another. Great camera - built like a tank (with power winder it weighs almost as much).

    Dave
     
  6. flatulent1

    flatulent1 Subscriber

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    Steve, if it is one of the first two versions, then it's mechanical. If it's the third version, it's electronic. Great cameras, all of them. You'll also want the 35mm f/2 breech lock lens with the concave front element; look for one where the elements look yellowed, it's perfect for B&W photography.
     
  7. Harrison Braughman

    Harrison Braughman Member

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    The F-1 is a classic camera, a legend, a perfect blend of science and function. The F-1 feels solid and natural. Holding a F-1 is a thrill. The machining is beautiful, and there is sense of reliability which instills confidence. The F-1 outstanding metering system ensures consistent quality images frame after frame. The F-1’s ability to absorb punishment and keep working is legendary.

    The only caveat I add is shooting the F-1 can become addictive. You will want to shoot the F-1 everyday all day. Then you begin to rationalize why you must purchase more FD lens, the extra bodies, the AE motor drives FN, the speed finders, the data backs, the AE Finder FN, multiple focusing screens, etc.

    The F-1 is a beautiful camera.
     
  8. Mad4MF

    Mad4MF Member

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    Fabulous camera; I love mine. Picked up a BGN-grade speed finder from KEH earlier this year and it makes the F1 a lot of fun to use, especially with the 85 1.8 I keep on it most of the time.

    If it's appropriate to mention, I have 2 of the concave 35s mentioned above (an online auction misstep; I want one I can use with E6) and only need 1.

    Phillip
     
  9. dynachrome

    dynachrome Member

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    I have two F-1s and two F-1ns, to name the mechanical cameras. I also have several Nikon F2s but I prefer the Canons. My mechanical F-1s are used with an MR-9 adapter and either a 386 or MS-76 battery. I have a very nice 35/2 FD SSC with the concave front element and cleared it very well with UV treatment. I later added the second version of the 35/2 FD SSC (convex front element, f/22 minimum aperture). That lens is similar in design to the later 35/2 New FD and is also very good. Find your favorite focusing screen or screens and get the L version of each. The L screens are brighter and will make using the camera easier for macro work and with slower lenses in general. It will be worhwhile to have the camera serviced so you can use it with confidence.
     
  10. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    Not strictly accurate and an oversimplification , the third and final version of the F1the F1-N has a part mechanical part electronic hybrid shutter even if the battery fails speeds from 1/125 sec. to 2000 sec. 1/90 sec (the flash sync speed) and B will work because they are mechanical, only the slow speeds from 1/60 sec. to 8 seconds are electronic and need battery power. http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/hardwares/manuals/canonnewf1manual/htm/exposure.html#Shutter.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 13, 2012
  11. narsuitus

    narsuitus Member

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    I too am a big fan of metal, mechanical, manual (3-M) cameras. I have used Canon and Nikon 3-M cameras but I have never used the Canon F1. However, I had colleagues who used and loved them.

    If I were in your situation, I would get the Nikon F2 (another great 3-M camera) so I could use the Nikon lenses I already owned. However, if I have always wanted the Canon F1, I would get it because life is just too darn short.


    http://www.flickr.com/photos/11336821@N00/5226987647/
     

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  12. Pumalite

    Pumalite Subscriber

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    Me too. +1
     
  13. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

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    I have one for close to 30 years and bought another one on Ebay. I know Canon f1N like the back of my hand. Had to give up my motor drive with high power nicad pack because I'm older and can't stand the weight. So if someone wants to make me an offer for the whole Kitten Kaboodle with charger and dummy battery, please do so.
     
  14. ambaker

    ambaker Subscriber

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    Aww jeeze, I hate threads like this. I just get myself convinced that I have far too many cameras, and then I stumble across a thread like this. Then I start thinking that I've always wanted one too, and the next think I know my wife is saying, "A package came for you today. What did you buy this time?"

    The F-1 is a great cam, but then I started with an A-1, and still have FD lenses. As mentioned earlier, if you already have Nikon lenses, it might be a consideration to go Nikon. The other thing to know, if it matters to you, the FD lenses are not compatible with the EOS line (film or digital). There are adapters, but they require a correction lens to reach infinity focus, so you would lose image quality if you decided to go EOS later. Learned that one the hard way.