F3 upgrade or F5?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by dugrant153, May 24, 2012.

  1. dugrant153

    dugrant153 Member

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    Hi all,

    I'm planning to drop by Glazer's Camera store in Seattle this weekend (possibly). This has me thinking of an opportunity to pick something up on the way.

    I currently have a Nikon F3 (DE-2, G2 screen) that serves me well for the most part. I am now thinking of picking up the MD-4 for it and maybe buying up a new F3 body to replace the one that I have. However, I realize that for the same cost I could also possibly pickup an F5! I have a 50mm F1.5G AF-s lens but my other lenses are all manual.

    My questions are:

    1) Is the F5 really quiet (advance, mirror slap, rewind)? I know it's big and bulky but I may have a wedding to shoot and would like a camera that is pretty stealthy. My F90x is like a banshee in a quiet church service.

    2) Does the F3 MD-4 have the option of firing using the camera shutter button as well as the drive's shutter button? The reason I'm asking if I want to have the flexibility of being able to shoot either in motordrive mode or regular "thumb-wind" mode (aka quiet mode for me).

    3) Is the F3 MD-4 really loud when rewinding? Does it allow the option to manually rewind even if motor drive attached?

    I am looking to make a discrete setup for myself. I currently shoot with a Nikon F100 and Nikon F3.
     
  2. Chris Nielsen

    Chris Nielsen Member

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    My F5 was most certainly not quiet nor discrete! My F90 is much quieter
    F5 is awesome though
     
  3. migtex

    migtex Member

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    Dugrant,

    The F3 is less nosier than the F5. If you want to be discrete the F3 (without the MD-4) is the way to go.
    Answering your questions...
    1- No the F5 motor is noisier than the MD-4. The F3 + MD-4 is bigger in height than the F5.
    2- Yes you can use any of the shutters and manual advance or drive.
    3- The F3 It's is loud (sort of, F5 is less noisier on rewind) but you have the option of doing it manually.

    hope it helps.
    If possible get both or at least try each one of them (F3+MD-4 and F5) 8 AA will show it better.
     
  4. Markok765

    Markok765 Member

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    The F5 feels quieter than the f90x. much better viewfinder, as well as less mirror slap
     
  5. dehk

    dehk Member

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    Stick with the F3.
     
  6. LJSLATER

    LJSLATER Member

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    The F5 has a manual rewind crank. It also has a "continuous silent" film advance mode--instead of a loud whir, it makes a shuddering, halting noise.
     
  7. whlogan

    whlogan Subscriber

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    Stay with F100. It is the most perfect Nikon ever made !!!! No foolin. It is the very best there ever has been or ever will be. You are there. Next best is your F3. You're already there, Pal !!! You're home !!
    Logan
     
  8. Leigh B

    Leigh B Member

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    The F3 is the ONLY choice for 35mm film Nikons.

    An absolute classic that will outlive all of us.

    - Leigh
     
  9. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    1. Both cameras make about the same amount of noise when they are motor driven.
    2. I have to check, although the shutter will release with the normal shutter release button but the film will advance once you release the shutter release button. Of course when you have the MD-4 attached.
    3. The MD-4 and the F5 is about the same loud when rewind but then both can be rewind by hand.

    I picked the F3HP as my first choice. I do own both and do like the F5 a lot but not as much as the F3. I don't own the F100 but I don't think I would like it.
     
  10. Pumalite

    Pumalite Subscriber

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    You alreasy have the F100: Soup up the F3
     
  11. F/1.4

    F/1.4 Member

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    The F100 has a better AF illumination system, easier to read read-outs in the finder, weighs a heck of a lot less, almost half the size of an F5, and has a pretty decently quiet rewind system. I was using an F5 on tuesday and it reminded me why I stick to my F100's...

    The only Nikon I can imagine replacing those with is an F6.
     
  12. Kiron Kid

    Kiron Kid Member

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    Go with the F-100 and MB-15 motor grip. It can be romed if desired. The F100 also has RED focusing points, which are much easier to see than the black focusing points in the F-5. The N90s is pretty sweet rig too.
     
  13. dugrant153

    dugrant153 Member

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    wow, lots of Nikon users out there!
    Thanks for all the opinions. I'll definitely give it a check and try out the different cameras there. I understand the MD4 would be loud but having the option of not using it would be huge since then I can switch between "uber silent" (no MD-4 used) mode and high FPS (MD-4 used) mode.
    Heck, I might even upgrade my F3 in the process!

    Good to know the F5 isn't as uber silent as I maybe imagine it to be. While it doesn't have to be super silent, I'd just like it to be better than the F90x I have which has a motor advance that screeches. yikes!
     
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  15. sharperstill

    sharperstill Member

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    There's nothing discrete about a F3 with a MD4 attached....
     
  16. Newt_on_Swings

    Newt_on_Swings Member

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    Corrected: there is nothing discrete about a F3.

    Haha can't really hide the thing even without md4 and a small lens. The thing is a huge hunk of metal, even bigger with the High eyepoint finder.
     
  17. semi-ambivalent

    semi-ambivalent Subscriber

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    The sound of "Cameras" in movie soundtracks everywhere...

    s-a
     
  18. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    Mine is attempting to do just that... and appears that it may be successful. In service since 1981 and still performing admirably.
     
  19. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    I have never personally experienced a situation where I needed to do that within the same roll of film.. or even within the same session whithout sufficient time allotted to remove/replace (R+R) the MD-4 on my F3. I shoot either with MD4, or without MD4 -- typically. R+R takes only a minute (or two... but no more than that) and the only catch is the potential for film fogging if film is in the camera at the time of R+R.

    I think, but have never needed to do it, one can power the camera with the camera battery (turn the camera power switch on) but leave the MD4 power switch OFF and take pictures using the meter and manual film wind... that would give you the quickest transition from "uber silent" (no MD-4 used) mode and high FPS (MD-4 used) mode. As I said... I can't remember ever doing htat but it seems within the cameras capabilities. And unfortunately I'm not with my F3 at the moment and can't try it for you.
     
  20. dugrant153

    dugrant153 Member

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    Strangely enough, I was able to fire manually on the Olmpus OM1 with a winder on and just left the motor drive on. If I wanted to advance with the drive, I just pressed the drive's shutter button. Bam. Both options available. If I read correctly, sounds like i can only switch options on the F3 by attaching and disconnecting the motor drive.

    Btw the f90x is quiet when no film is loaded. However once loaded, it's pretty loud. Would be curious to compare something like the F5 Cs mode with film with the F3.
     
  21. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    What options? There are few on F3 or MD4. If the MD4 is attached and powered on, it can be released from either the button on the MD4 or the button on the F3. No difference. If MD4 is powered off but F3 is powered on then only the F3 shutter release button will work.

    I seem to recall that if MD-4 is "on" and shutter is dropped manually (like from the 1/80 manual release) then the MD-4 will transport the film. But if MD-4 is 'off' then it won't. I know I've manually cocked the F3 with the MD4 attached and "off"... and the film transported and shutter cocked.
     
  22. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    p.s. if you are worried about noise then I suspect you will not find any motor drive that will be quiet enough.
     
  23. cdholden

    cdholden Member

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    Compromise between the F3 and F5... get an F4 (better than both, imho).
     
  24. pollux

    pollux Member

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    does the f3 winder really make a noise like the f3hp vid on youtube by gazonomy? if so i'm in love.
     
  25. agw

    agw Member

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    I have both:
    • F3+MD4 noise is an exaggeration of the typical movie's camera+winder noise: Loud, long, remarkable.
    • MD4 off and F3 on allows to fire the F3 and manually advance.
    • You need no battery in the F3 when connected to an MD4.
    • F5 is subjectively less noisy, because the film advance/shutter cock sound is much deeper and shorter. My guess, if you could measure it, probably both are about the same.
    • Comparison F3+MD4 sound vs. F5: brrrzzziiiiiii: vs. chonk!.
    • Both allow manual rewind. On power rewind, the F3+MD4 is slightly louder than the F5 (at least mine).
    • F5 eats batteries for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Throw in a few snacks in between. F3+MD4 lives forever on a single set of alkalines.
    • "Silent mode" on the F5 is a joke played by Nikon engineers on Nikon marketing.
    • Both are the best - F3+MD4 the best MF Nikon, F5 the best AF Nikon. Eat everything else alive, and chew it out reduced to small gears and screws.
     
  26. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    I think you observed this differences because you use AA alkaline batteries with your MD-4. The MD-4 with alkaline only advances the film at 3.8 fps with the mirror working and when I used my MD-4 with the MN-2 and it's over 5fps with the working mirror so the sound isn't much different from that of the F5 with near 8fps (as it operates on AA).