Too late to buy a Nikon F6?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by snaggs, Dec 30, 2007.

  1. snaggs

    snaggs Member

    Messages:
    325
    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2005
    Location:
    Perth, Austr
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I currently have a FM3a and an assorted of MF glass. However, sometimes its good to have a AF. Also, given that Nikon have now released FF digital, I'm having second thoughts about buying exotic glass in MF (i.e. 85 f1.4, 200 f/2).

    So I was thinking, why not buy the F6 and only buy the exotic glass with a view to it having a good digital future. Also, whilst I love the FM3a, sometimes I miss the frame and shoot ease of AF. Kids don't stay still!

    The question is.. am I being a luddite buy spending $1600 on a new F6 instead of a D3. This is not for landscapes, basically people portraits and also photo's of the kids running around etc. I have a SB600 flash left over from my Nikon DX digital days.

    I thought I'd be able to avoid this question by buying a piece of nice glass for my wifes Pentax K100D (50-135 f/2.8). However, I'm finding out all the limitations of the pentax compared to Nikon. The fill flash is terrible, focussing slow, and the metering gets confused all the time. I remember my old F65 and D70 being way better than this. I think I might ebay the lens and instead use the money to subsidise some Nikon AF glass.

    My favorite colour film is Fuji Reala, though I do love my slide projector so would like to find a nice high res colour film. Velvia is too crazy for portraits, the old provia was a bit hohum.. Maybe Kodak 100VS? K64 is not bad, but not quite colourful enough!

    Daniel.
     
  2. colrehogan

    colrehogan Member

    Messages:
    2,016
    Joined:
    May 11, 2004
    Location:
    St. Louis, M
    Shooter:
    Large Format Pan
    If you are shooting film and think that you will continue to shoot film for the foreseeable future, you can get the F6 and give the full frame Nikon digi**l camera prices time to come down to reasonable levels. But, if you are suffering from GAS (gear acquisition syndrome) and can afford both cameras, the choice is up to you.
     
  3. snaggs

    snaggs Member

    Messages:
    325
    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2005
    Location:
    Perth, Austr
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Well, for the price of the D3 I can buy a F6, 200 f/2 VR Refurb with money left in the bank ready for the rumored iminent release of the 85mm f/1.4 AF-S.

    Considering 11x14 is my favored size, I'm thinking glass will make a bigger difference. Realistically, I shoot 1-2 rolls a week. Processing costs don't even come into the equation.

    Daniel.
     
  4. kapro

    kapro Member

    Messages:
    84
    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2006
    Location:
    Slovakia
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    GAS (gear acquisition syndrome)

    It's infectious. Isn't it?
     
  5. Barry S

    Barry S Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,339
    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2007
    Location:
    DC Metro
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    For a fraction of the price of an F6, I'd buy a lightly used F100. The F100 is 95% of what you get in an F6 and you can find them in beautiful condition in the $200-$300 range. For a couple bucks more, you can get the vertical grip as well. The F100 is a beautiful and highly functional camera--and a joy to use. Not to say you wouldn't enjoy an F6, but I think the F100 is the ultimate Nikon bargain.
     
  6. IloveTLRs

    IloveTLRs Member

    Messages:
    1,096
    Joined:
    May 22, 2007
    Location:
    ch
    Shooter:
    Sub 35mm
    Or even an F80s (which I just bought.) They're cheap here in Japan so I'm guessing they're even cheaper in other countries.
    It doesn't have the environmental seals that the F100 has and doesn't work with very old glass, but it's still a doozy of a camera. Great AF and should work just swell with the SB-800. I think the D70 was based on the F80/100 (not sure though; I got rid of mine within 3 months.)
     
  7. PhotoJim

    PhotoJim Member

    Messages:
    2,223
    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2005
    Location:
    Regina, SK,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I'm with Barry S, except I'd say that for a fraction of the price of an F6, I'd buy a lightly-used F5. The F5 is 98.5% of what you get in an F6 (and more in some areas, like removable viewfinders) and you can find them in beautiful condition in the $400-500 range. No vertical grip is required.
     
  8. Matt5791

    Matt5791 Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,001
    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    Location:
    England, Bir
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Yeah - definitely go for the F5 - infact, whilst I've only handled the F6, it felt a LOT less robust than the F5.

    In my eyes the F5 was a real Pro workhorse, whereas the F6 is aimed more at the keen enthusiast market. However there seem to be loads of well cared for F5's around which were also sold to that market!

    As for the F80 - I thought that doesn't meter with MF lenses (apart from stop down metering) due to lack of aperture ring coupling. This is why I bought my wife a F70 recently as it has that coupling, just incase I wanted to use my AI/S lenses on it.
     
  9. Thanasis

    Thanasis Member

    Messages:
    392
    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2006
    Location:
    Sydney, Aust
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    You can get an almost mint F5 for much less than an F6. The F5 works with MF (with some metering limitations) and AF lenses as well. It built like a brick ****-house as well. I bought an F5 about a year ago and i havent looked back.
     
  10. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

    Messages:
    19,446
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Location:
    Southern Cal
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have a Nikon N-75 with an f/2.8 20mm to 35mm [metal] Nikon zoom and an f/3.8 28mm to 300mm Tamron zoom lenses and a SB-800 strobe. I went through the same thought process buying a Hasselblad [an 'asselblad?] 503 CX and four lenses, an Omega D5XL enlarger and an Omega/Arkay Professional 150 print dryer along the way this year. Then two days ago I picked up an F-100 from KEH via their eBay room for $235 in Excellent condition.

    :surprised: My name is Steve and I have G.A.S. :surprised:

    Steve
     
  11. Petri

    Petri Member

    Messages:
    16
    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2005
    Location:
    Helsinki, Fi
    Shooter:
    35mm
    If you want a F6, just buy one. I would if I had some extra money. It may well be the best 35mm slr.

    By the way, do you already have a film scanner?
     
  12. j4425

    j4425 Member

    Messages:
    40
    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2007
    Location:
    East Rutherf
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I agree. The F5 is a workhorse. I would only recommend the F6 if you really need that much improved AF. Other than that, the F5 is the way to go..
     
  13. airgunr

    airgunr Subscriber

    Messages:
    122
    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2006
    Location:
    SE Wisconsin
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I just bought a F6 with the motor drive for $1,400 used. The camera is in EX condition and only had 28 rolls run through it. You can find some excellent deals on them. I would suggest trying www.nikonians.org as a place to start, that's where I purchased mine. It really is the Ultimate Film camera, there will be no others to match it, ever. I would urge you to get one if you can, you will love it.

    That being said.....

    I have the F5 as well and you can pick one up for about a 1/3 the price and it is very comparable to the F6. The F6 has some features including the CLS compatablilty that make it really nice to work with. Other than that it's kind of like an F5 with the data back added but smaller without the motor drive/battery booster. When you add that to it, the camera is very similar in weight and size to the F5.

    My current collection is: FM2n, FE2, FA, F5 & F6.
     
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. sbelyaev

    sbelyaev Member

    Messages:
    127
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2006
    Location:
    ABQ
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Buy F6. If you don't you will regret for the rest of your life. You can get a new one for 1800 or refurb for 1300-1400. Certainly, you will spend extra 700-1000 comparing with what you may pay for f100, f5, but at least you will never look back and question yourself why have not bought F6.
    F6 (like f100, F5) will never be obsolete and it is very unlikely that it will be superseded by any other 35mm film camera.
    I got one and never regretted.
    I believe that if one is serious about landscape the LF or MF/Mf-digital back is the way to go. But for occasional pictures of fast moving objects (like children), family snapshots, sport and travel F6 is hard to beat. It is relatively compact, runs on batteries (no chargers), dust/water resistant. Metering is perfect with any film.
     
  16. PHOTOTONE

    PHOTOTONE Member

    Messages:
    2,412
    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2006
    Location:
    Van Buren, A
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    To support the continued manufacture of film based cameras, we should, whenever possible purchase a brand new factory fresh camera, as otherwise there won't be any new cameras to buy. The manufacturer will look at current sales to determine the way forward.
     
  17. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    6,824
    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2005
    Shooter:
    35mm
    One thing to consider is that a film body will hold it's value better digital body, and won't be obsolete in two years.
     
  18. Jeffrey A. Steinberg

    Jeffrey A. Steinberg Member

    Messages:
    296
    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2004
    Location:
    Scarsdale, N
    Also the F5 allows for he sport finder and the vertical magnification finder. Both are first rate in my opinion.

    Same for the F3HP although the meter head of the F5 is better than the f3.
     
  19. j4425

    j4425 Member

    Messages:
    40
    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2007
    Location:
    East Rutherf
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Great point!!! Never even thought about it that way..
     
  20. snaggs

    snaggs Member

    Messages:
    325
    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2005
    Location:
    Perth, Austr
    Shooter:
    35mm
    No, I don't have a film scanner.. (or a printer anymore) I went down that route, but once again, one of the joys of film is getting labs to do things like scanning for you. Realistically, how many stunning shots do you do a year that need a top-line scan done? (they're the ones you frame and put on the wall).

    Basically, if I have a roll of E6 (120 or 35mm), it costs me ~$10 for processing at Churchills. I then have another lab (Cambridge Photographic) which I take the E6 too who will print the entire roll for me at 5x7 including setting their Fuji Frontier to Hirez mode and scan them for me for $25. If there is a stunning shot there.. then I take it back to Churchill, where they charge ~$20 for a custom 11x14 print, where they scan it on a Imacon, touch-up, colour correct and give me a copy of the TIF on a CD for free with the print.

    Now that workflow takes even less time than using Aperture on my Mac :smile: So yes, I have GAS attacks.. but I've now limited it to one side of the equation.

    Daniel.
     
  21. snaggs

    snaggs Member

    Messages:
    325
    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2005
    Location:
    Perth, Austr
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I think you have summarized my intended use pretty well. I have a 4x5 view camera for Landscapes and formal portraits.

    * The F5 is too big (I don't want a grip, and 5.5 fps is plenty). Also the F6's AF is supposed to be quite a bit better no?
    * The F100 is nice, but doesn't work with any of my MF glass.. maybe not a big deal.

    The only thing against the F6 seems to be price.

    Daniel.
     
  22. jgjbowen

    jgjbowen Member

    Messages:
    879
    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2003
    Location:
    Richmond, VA
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Daniel,

    The hell with the second thoughts. Buy the 85 f1.4 and the 200 f2. I own them both, together with 3 FM3A bodies and love them. The 85 f1.4 lives on one of the bodies. GREAT lens for portraits on Christmas Morning!!!
     
  23. sbelyaev

    sbelyaev Member

    Messages:
    127
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2006
    Location:
    ABQ
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    This is how I use mine. I enjoy the camera every time I use it.
    Money...
    D300 costs more. How many out of thousands digital pictures which will be taken with each D300 body will be enlarged to the dimensions at which digital image surpasses film? Only few. People pay $2000 for D300. In my opinion small-sensor dslrs are waste of money.
    With F6 you will take less pictures, but most of them will be printed. You will spend less time for post-processing. Labs will do everything for you. You will not worry about exposure, for F6 exposure is dead on no matter what the object/conditions are. You will enjoy the camera. You will be a proud owner... )
     
  24. Barry S

    Barry S Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,339
    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2007
    Location:
    DC Metro
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Oh wow--you are so right. Better buy a brand new F6 or Nikon might delay introduction of the much-anticipated F7. :rolleyes: Seriously-- we're talking about a guy that wants to take shots of his kids--maybe he can limp along with an F100 (which is perfectly compatible with MF glass). The F5's are very nice, but they're large and heavy beasts, so try before you buy.
     
  25. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

    Messages:
    19,446
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Location:
    Southern Cal
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Weight and cost are the reasons I choose the F-100. I can always buy a new or used F-6 later.

    Steve
     
  26. snaggs

    snaggs Member

    Messages:
    325
    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2005
    Location:
    Perth, Austr
    Shooter:
    35mm
    The best thing about digital, is that it has conditioned everyone that spending thousands of dollars on a camera is quite reasonable. The F6 is a quarter of the cost of the D3!

    Daniel.