Nikon FA, Aperture Priority mode

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by S.larsson, May 10, 2012.

  1. S.larsson

    S.larsson Member

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    Hi,

    I've just bought a Nikon FA. My parents are bringing it down to me in germany when they come to visit. But I have a question regarding Aperture Priority mode. Am I correct in believing that; at a given aperture it will find the correct time for the shutter to stay open for however long it needs to get the desired exposure?

    Now for my actual question. I will want to use this for landscapes and will more than likely be shooting some nightscapes. How long is the longest shutter speed with aperture priority? Is it longer than the lame 30 minutes a D90 offers? I realise I can do it all manually with Shutter release cables etc. But I am just curious about how the FA performs.

    Regards,

    Stephan Larsson
     
  2. Rol_Lei Nut

    Rol_Lei Nut Member

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    While I can't directly answer your question, IIRC the FE2, which is similar in its AE function, only does a couple of minutes.

    But mainly => you shouldn't even want to make such exposures in auto mode!!!

    1) There is the film reciprocity error, which means that any auto exposure will be innacurate (assuming any meter reading will be accurate in that type of lighting anyway - tables of "rules" for different situations generally works better).
    While you *could* compensate the exposure in AE, you wouldn't even know by how much to compensate for reciprocity failure....

    2) 30 mins+ (if it even could) in AE will *really* run your battery down. "B" is definitely friendlier on the wallet... :wink:

    Such time exposures are really the realm of tables and experience, not AE...
    Good luck!
     
  3. Les Sarile

    Les Sarile Member

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    I fired my FA (in a pitch black room, lens cover, etc) a few times and can't get more then a couple of minutes of exposure in aperture priority mode. I am not sure this is characteristic of the camera or that my sample is not working properly. I did try it on my FM3A aperture priority mode and it is over an hour now and the shutter is still open.


    Most of my very long (2 hours+) aperture priority testing have been conducted using my Pentax LX. Unlike all other cameras, it will keep the shutter open until it has achieved "correct exposure". Additionally, it meters the scene in real time - off the film, and will vary the exposure accordingly. Of course for these ultra long exposures, there are no data sheets and so you will have to try them out to see what the results would be. Below are a couple of tests I conducted with Fuji 100 and Kodak Gold. As you can see, any color issues due to reciprocity failure can be easily dealt with.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  4. mawz

    mawz Member

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    Like the FE2, the FA is limited to approximately 120 seconds for an aperture or program mode exposure. As none of these cameras are capable of adjusting the exposure during the making of the exposure (unlike the Pentax LX or some OM models) A mode is contraindicated once you start hitting reciprocity effects, which you will by 120 seconds.
     
  5. skahde

    skahde Member

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    Relying on Autoexposure under these conditons is hit and miss anyway. Use the B setting and bracket a lot.