Viewfinder Coverage

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by mporter012, Jan 21, 2013.

  1. mporter012

    mporter012 Subscriber

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    I was just reading about viewfinder coverage. Such strong opinions on the matter! I use an FE2, which has a 93% coverage. I didn't actually know this until about two hours ago! I better start paying more attention to my edges. The F3 has 100% coverage in the Nikon lineup.

    How important is the coverage in your opinion?
     
  2. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    Much more important for slides that are to be projected than other available options.
     
  3. Les Sarile

    Les Sarile Member

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    I appreciate the 100% coverage though and the Nikons were the only ones with it for that era - Nikon F, F2 & F3. However, I much prefer larger magnification then percentage of coverage. For instance the Pentax MX has 0.97X magnification and 95% coverage to the FE2's 0.86X & 93%. The result is visibly larger view. I understand that this is the tradeoff for those wearing glasses require eye-relief afforded by the smaller magnification.
     
  4. Aja B

    Aja B Member

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    For less than 100% finders it's somewhat dependent on subject matter in the context of having ample time to properly account for what's obscurred while composing. I'd much prefer a 100% finder but also appreciate the compactness and lighter weight of smaller bodies. Can't have it all in one so that's why I have too many cameras! On a similar note, some slide mounts will obscure a portion of the image. I find that quite irritating.
     
  5. LJSLATER

    LJSLATER Member

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    I have to have 100%. I'm one of those guys that files their negative carriers. I shoot E6 almost exclusively, but I don't mount it.
     
  6. henry finley

    henry finley Member

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    The Nikkormat FT2 has 96%, as far as I have put to a test with tape markers I place on the side of the house and squared the camera back to the side of the house. Excellent. Builds in the perfect amount for the variations in various negative carrier openings. The 100% of the F2 is really great, but not if your negative carrier bites into it. A Pentax Spotmatic is 92% AND off-center. A Mamiya/Sekor 1000DTL is 85%-on-center. Just tidbits of interest. But the bottom line is, it's just another good reason to get rid of all your other 35mm's and just buy a good used FTn through FT3. After 46 years since I got my first Instamatic 104, A Nikkormat FT2 is the best in every conceivable category of critique.
     
  7. MFstooges

    MFstooges Member

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    I didn't know some SLR have 100% view until I borrowed my friend's Nikon F2 for shooting museum collections. I struggled to get the lab print it the way I see because they keep 'excluding' some details.
     
  8. henry finley

    henry finley Member

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    The Nikon F2 has a fit, finish, and precision tooling that is absolutely astounding. Truly a piece of assemblage above any other. After the Nikkormat FT2, the F2 is the second best of the Nikon line.
     
  9. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    I scan everything, I don't know about enlargers, but with my scanner holder it never quite fits dead center and the top or bottom edge is always getting cut off, so I would actually prefer a tiny but of crop as I by habit shoot exactly for frame and then get stuff cut off if the viewfinder is 100% so 97% sounds perfect to me.


    ~Stone

    Mamiya: 7 II, RZ67 Pro II / Canon: 1V, AE-1, 5DmkII / Kodak: No 1 Pocket Autographic, No 1A Pocket Autographic | Sent w/ iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  10. tkamiya

    tkamiya Member

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    It isn't important to me at all.

    I have no idea what my F100, and other camera bodies do. I have to cut off some when I print anyway to get a nice clean border. If I'm printing full frame, dirty border style (which I do every now and then) having 5% more or whatever won't make any difference to me.
     
  11. Peltigera

    Peltigera Member

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    Don't see what all the fuss is about. I am quite happy using cameras with two wire frames for a viewfinder - what you get depends entirely on exactly where you put your eye. My pictures seem to work out ok.
     
  12. thegman

    thegman Member

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    I shoot range finders, scale focus cameras, and TLRs, don't get precise framing on any of them, never been a problem.
     
  13. BradleyK

    BradleyK Subscriber

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    +1. Back in the day, the 100 per cent viewfinder coverage of the F2 was one of the primary reasons for choosing the Nikon system. As well, as a newbie I recall thinking that the "filed-out" look was kind of cool (without really understanding that some shooters had an actual reason for filing out their neg carriers). When I set up my first darkroom a few years later, I filed out both my carriers (35mm and 6x6). To this day, I remain a "full-frame" shooter so the 100 per cent coverage of the F2/F3/f5/F6 remains critical. That said, I also own a pair of M6s, whose negs I also print "full frame"...with some interesting results. Go figure.:whistling:
     
  14. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    I print B&W so the viewfinder coverage is not as important.

    Jeff
     
  15. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    Actually no, the 7% is to allow for the amount of the slide you lose when it's mounted for projection and the area that's lost in most 35mm neg carriers, because if you compose right to the edge on 100% Nikon viewfinders part of the image is otherwise lost.
     
  16. LiamG

    LiamG Member

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    I used to think this was really important. It was one of the reasons I got my F3hp way back when. Then I shot for some time with a pentax 67 with measly 90% coverage and so little eye relief I couldn't even see to the edges of that; now I could really care less, as long as I know the relationship between what I see and what will get put on film.
     
  17. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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    This was the original intent. The increased coverage of the Nikon F series camera allowed for much more accurate framing for scientific, technical and copy work.
    As benjiboy noted it's to allow for that bit of masking from the slide mount AND from a standard negative carrier.
     
  18. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Member

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    not.
     
  19. MFstooges

    MFstooges Member

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    It's very precise indeed. I used a scale when photographing the collections and really, what I saw is what I got. Not more and not less. If I ever do something critical like that again, I know what I will use.
     
  20. fotch

    fotch Member

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    The way I look at it is the 35mm negative is already small and I want to use all of it. If I can't see all of it in the viewfinder, its hit or miss so I cannot rely on 100%. Doesn't always matter, however, when you get use to 100%, less than that is annoying. That said, I still enjoy my FE, EL, and others.
     
  21. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    When I had a Nikon F2 and shot mainly slides and mounted them for projection, I found the 100% viewfinder very annoying, I know 100% coverage in theory is ideal , but in practice it was a pain in the ass.
     
  22. narsuitus

    narsuitus Member

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    When I was shooting a lot of medical and scientific subjects, flat artwork, and architectural subjects with small format cameras, I often needed the 100% viewfinder accuracy for proper framing. The Nikon F, F2, F3, and F4 provided me with this very useful feature.

    However, now that I shoot more vacation/travel subjects, I really prefer cameras (like rangefinders) that have more than 100% viewfinder coverage.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/11336821@N00/5219143020/
     

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  23. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

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    I wasn't going to phrase it quite like that but this really captures my experience also. Intellectually I like the notion of 100% but in practice I benefit from .82 (or whatever my Non-F Nikons use).