F3 + DW4 finder a good setup for macro and general photography

Discussion in 'Macro Photography' started by Anupam Basu, Jan 26, 2006.

  1. Anupam Basu

    Anupam Basu Member

    Messages:
    504
    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2005
    Location:
    Madison, WI
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Hello, recently I have been considering getting a second body to use with slide film - mainly macro but also the occasional landscape etc - because I find my N90s is almost always loaded with BW film.

    I have used an FE-2 and FG among the MF bodies and to my surprise found the FE-2 with an E screen more difficult to focus than the N90s. I just LOVE the N90s viewfinder, but I have heard that the F3 is still unmatched on that front.

    But unfortunately I can't get my hands on one locally to try out. I am wondering what people might think of the F3 + the 6x DW-4 waistlevel finder combination. How usable is it? Is the whole viewing area magnified? Is it good for non-macro uses as well. If I go with the F3 - I'll get MLU and a 6x finder and lose spot metering and some flash capabilities of my N90s.

    Any opinions on the usability of this combination.

    Thanks,
    Anupam

    PS: In terms of magnification, I find I shoot mostly at or below 1:2 - just beyond life size.
     
  2. Mick Fagan

    Mick Fagan Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,099
    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2005
    Location:
    Melbourne Au
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have a couple of F3's. Both are equipped with the grid focusing screen and I run the DA-2, DW-3, DW-4 and High Eyepoint finders.

    The waist level DW-3, is a surprising and cheaper unit for a lot of tight work. Works especially well in crowded situations with a 24mm and held above the head. The walls of the finder keep light off the focusing screen allowing one to see the general picture. Great for vertically challenged photographers!

    The DA-2 sports finder is brilliant with a crash helmet on, for motorcycle and action use.

    The DW-4 with it's focusing dioptre is perfection. For field close focusing work, I use this with a 2.8 - 55 Micro Nikkor and occasionally the PK-13 27.5mm coupled extension, or the PK-12 14mm coupled extension.

    Possibly the best reason for getting the DW-4 is that you can get perfect focusing, regardless of the state of your eyesite.

    With bellows on and the reduction of light hitting the focusing screen, I find I need the DW-4 or DW-3 to see focus, the High Eyepoint normal prism is extremely dark by comparison.

    I also use it with my 105, 180 & 300mm lenses when shooting static subjects. Basically I use the camera with that finder on like a medium format, just takeing my time.

    Mick.
     
  3. bobfowler

    bobfowler Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,439
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2003
    Location:
    New Jersey,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Like Mike, I also have a DW-3 and DA-2 (no DW-4, yet). The DW-3 is a fanastic value. I use it for more than just macro, it get's popped on for any low level shots. My "regular" finder is the DE-2, which I haven't used since I bought the DA-2 a couple of months ago. :smile:
     
  4. Anupam Basu

    Anupam Basu Member

    Messages:
    504
    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2005
    Location:
    Madison, WI
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    DW-4

    Thanks for the responses. Is the DW-4 usable for non macro work? Does it show the whole screen? I'd probably get additional fiinders but is it possible to occasionally use he DW-4 as the only finder or does it hinder framing?

    -A
     
  5. Mick Fagan

    Mick Fagan Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,099
    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2005
    Location:
    Melbourne Au
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The only hindrance to framing is that you have to have your eye reasonably close to the DW-4, whereas with the DW-3 you can see the screen from quite a distance away, like arms length above your head.

    With all finders on the F3, you get 100% coverage!

    Mick.