Nikon F3 or Nikon F4?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by Morituri, Sep 17, 2010.

F3 or F4??

Poll closed Oct 17, 2010.
  1. Nikon F4

    97.1%
  2. Nikon F3

    2.9%
  1. Morituri

    Morituri Member

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    Hi guys, great site!

    Was wondering the last couple of days, should I get a Nikon F3 or a Nikon F4? I have a amazing Nikon FM2n already and want to get a second body. I own a couple of lenses, most of them are AI and not AI-S what difference will this make on the F3/F4?

    So yea, can't make up my mind. I love the old mechanic style of cameras (á la FM2n) hence why I wanted to get a F3 but I feel like it might be a little bit too similar to the FM2n? I thought F4 might be great because you get lovely metering with the AI lenses.

    I am not interested in F100 or F5's since they are "too modern" :cool: I actually have a F5 at the moment which I will sell. I haven't touched it since I got my FM2n.

    Also might note that I am on a budget, and I can probably get a F3 body for $100, a F4 will probably be $50 or $100 bucks extra, and I am a poor artist :tongue:

    Anyway, F3 or F4, pro's and con's?

    Thanks!
     
  2. whlogan

    whlogan Subscriber

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    I'd go fot the F4as, meself. I have both. The F3 with the motor drive is a real beast, let me tell you. Sturdy as an Abrams tank, though. Last longer than we do, for sure. The F4 is a really beautiful machine. I got mine with the 24-120 lens as a kit and it is all one ever might need in the line of a 35 camera. It will do whatever needs be done for you. So go F4.
    Logan
     
  3. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    I'm not a Nikon user, but if and when I do, I'll lean toward the F3.

    Jeff
     
  4. r-brian

    r-brian Member

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    I had a F3. Loved it, wonderful camera and the smoothest advance on any camera I've ever owned. Sold it to buy a F4. With the F4, I get matrix metering (along with spot and center-weighted metering) with all my Ai/Ais lenses. That's the main reason for the change. The AF of the F4 is slow compared to today's standard but it is still nice to have sometimes so I can use my AF Nikkors.

    I also own a F2, FM and a FE.
     
  5. Colin Corneau

    Colin Corneau Subscriber

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    They're both great cameras.

    All things being equal, I'd suggest the F4. You get TTL and spot metering even with older lenses. You still get a solidly built camera that is reliable years into the future. You get a very ergnomic, easy to handle camera.

    You also get a higher flash synch, FWIW and wider choice of shutter speeds. I've owned both.
     
  6. Pinholemaster

    Pinholemaster Member

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    Get a Nikon F100. Save yourself headaches.
     
  7. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    If you want something close to the FM2n get the F3. Very easy to handle and not much larger or heavier.The F4 gives additional capabilities but is larger and heavier, though the plain F4 is better in that regard.

    Make sure you like the meter readout on the F3. I like my F3HP but i think the readout, especially on manual. is too dinky. Oh, and the meter illuminator might well not work.

    If you can, try them both. If you can't, get the one you think you want, and if you don't like it you can sell it for about what you paid and get the other.

    BTW, the poll would not accept my vote for the F3, so I clicked F4 and it accepted it. The voting's rigged! :wink::D
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 17, 2010
  8. narsuitus

    narsuitus Member

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    I have never used the FM2n.

    I have, however, owned and used the Nikon F, F2, F3, and F4 and all were great cameras. The F2 replaced the F and I am still using the F2 (actually three of them). The F4 replaced the F3 and I am still using the F4 (only one). I chose the F4 over the F3 primarily for the auto focus feature. Therefore, I had to cast my vote for the F4 in this poll.
     
  9. fschifano

    fschifano Member

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    I have an F3, and while it's a great camera (love the viewfinder), I really think the F4 is the better deal. You get AF, and while it's a "nice to have" feature, it's not the real reason I'd choose it over the F3. The real reason is that it has matrix metering and TTL flash capability with any of the older AI and AI"S lenses. The AF system still provides focus confirmation, and the viewfinder is top notch. Yes, it's heavier than the F3 and it uses a lot of batteries by comparison, but they're cheap AA's that are available just about anywhere on the planet.
     
  10. CGW

    CGW Member

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  11. fotch

    fotch Member

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    I tried to vote but it keeps giving me You did not select an option to vote for. Please press back to return to the poll and choose an option before voting.

    Anyway, I have 2 F3s (purchased new) and like them because they are simple, acurate, nimble, and a joy to use. I like the interchangable finders and mirror lock up and they have never failed me in 32 years.
     
  12. perkeleellinen

    perkeleellinen Member

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    I use an FM2 and used to have an F3hp. I think these two are quite similar in handling and that may be important to you. The meter read out on the FM2 is better, I think, than the F3's but the hp's viewfinder in general is great. The F3 also has a great motordrive which will charge along at 6fps. You can take off the prism which is useful for very low level shooting such as when the camera is on the ground. The F3 feels extremely sturdy, more so than the FM2 and, in fact, is probably a better camera but for one aspect. The sync speed on the F3 is 1/80 compared to 1/250 on the FM2. For that reason more than any other (the other issue being meter read out) I sold the F3 and kept the FM2.

    The poll didn't work for me either.
     
  13. stillsilver

    stillsilver Member

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    The F3 will take more abuse than should be given to a camera. The F4 has the matrix and spot metering plus AF.
    Personally, I'd take the F3 over the F4. Just my two cents.

    Mike
     
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  15. Morituri

    Morituri Member

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    Stupid poll! :smile:

    Ok thanks guys, I think I have definitely made up my mind, F4 it is, I'll give that a go!

    Thanks everybody.
     
  16. Daud

    Daud Member

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    If you get a chance, try the F4 with an AF-s lens and I think you will be surprised at how good the AF is – a lot faster than a standard AF lens.
    (for when you become a rich artist..........)

    David.
    http://davidalockwood.wordpress.com
     
  17. Pumal

    Pumal Member

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    I have all of them. I like the F3HP a lot, but so do I the F, F2, F3, F4, Go for the F4; later you can get an F-100 or FM3A
     
  18. nambun

    nambun Member

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    Nikon's first SLR, the F, the first revolution.
    The Nikon F2 was just a reworked F.
    The Nikon F3 was an electronic F2, still merely evolution, not revolution.

    The F4 is the world's first professional autofocus camera. Today, slow but not bad.
    The F4 is the world's first professional camera with a built-in motor drive.
    The F4 is the world's first professional camera with modern Matrix (intelligent) light metering.

    The F5 was simply the F4 in a tougher package, but with knobs replaced by buttons and menus. The F4 has dedicated knobs for everything. The F5's meter is worse than the F4's when used with manual focus lenses.

    The F6 is a lighter-duty F5, but at least one can get Matrix metering with manual focus lenses on the F6, which the F5 can't. You have to program menus to get matrix metering with manual lenses on the F6; all you have to do on the F4 is mount a lens.

    by Ken.

    -------------------------

    In my opinion, you can choise F4 (without F4s, F4e because its heavy) is the best for AI/AIS.
     
  19. vbarniev

    vbarniev Member

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    You have to carry 'The Matrix' in your head with the f and f2, but that doesn't make them lesser cameras. Give me a Totally Manual camera anytime
     
  20. f1.4

    f1.4 Member

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    F5 with autofocus lenses.
    Have never looked back after that.
    F5 is cheap to buy these days.
     
  21. John_Nikon_F

    John_Nikon_F Subscriber

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    F4. I've owned many F3's over the years (anyone who also hangs out in the manual focus SLR forum @ Nikonians can attest to that most likely), but, when it came time to add an F2AS to the bag, it wasn't the F4 that disappeared. Was the Nikon F3P that disappeared. It seems that I don't have the desire to own an F3 anymore.

    The F3 is a good camera, but, the F4 trounces it.

    -J
     
  22. flatulent1

    flatulent1 Subscriber

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    I have an F4, really nice camera, probably my favorite Nikon. There is a small part of me that would like to get an F3THP, but that part doesn't know where the credit card is kept.

    Unfortunately, the part of me that wants an F6 knows precisely where the credit card lives... :outlaw:
     
  23. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    I go for F3. I have two of them. F4 is too big for me, (and autofocus is not for me), while F3 feels just right. And with dead batteries it is still relatively usable.
     
  24. zk-cessnaguy

    zk-cessnaguy Member

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    I like the F4's tank-like construction, the knobs and dial and its general chunkiness. It feels like it would survive a nuclear blast and could be used to drive nails with. And on a more serious note, its forward and backward compatibility with lenses is a huge bonus.
     
  25. LudditeJay

    LudditeJay Member

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    The F3 was the best all-around 35mm slr I have ever used. Feels very good in the hand when attached to an MD-4. Very nice viewfinder when fitted with a B focusing screen. Just a joy.
     
  26. clayne

    clayne Member

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    F3 by far. You don't need all of the unnecessary crap that comes with the F4.