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  1. #1
    Steve Mack's Avatar
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    Canon F1 question

    I am thinking of picking up a Canon F1 which is currently sitting on the showcase shelf of my local real-live camera store. I am planning to use it exclusively for B&W work, with a 35mm lens. I currently have a Nikon F100 with the 50mm f/1.8 Nikkor, for color negative and the occasional slide film roll. What has been your collective experience with the camera? I have wanted an F1 since the time I bought my first real live SLR, a Canon AE1, back when dinosaurs roamed the earth. I want a 3-M camera, in other words. (3-M camera: Metal, Mechanical, Manual.)

    Thanks to all who reply.

    With best regards,

    Steve

  2. #2

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    I have one myself, a great camera. Get it, can't go wrong.

    Jeff

  3. #3
    brucemuir's Avatar
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    I always wanted one too.
    Considering the unhealthy amount of gear I have now, I hesitate.

    Only because I don't want to start a whole entire new lens mount collection.

  4. #4

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    Canon F1 is one of the three cameras the great marty forscher called "hocky pucks" because, well, they were. the others are nikon F and Leica M.

    As long as it checks out, go for it.

  5. #5

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    I bought my first one in 2009 - liked it so much that I just bought another. Great camera - built like a tank (with power winder it weighs almost as much).

    Dave

  6. #6
    flatulent1's Avatar
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    Steve, if it is one of the first two versions, then it's mechanical. If it's the third version, it's electronic. Great cameras, all of them. You'll also want the 35mm f/2 breech lock lens with the concave front element; look for one where the elements look yellowed, it's perfect for B&W photography.
    Fred Latchaw
    Seattle WA


    I am beginning to resent being referred to as 'half-fast'.
    Whatever that's supposed to mean.

  7. #7

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    The F-1 is a classic camera, a legend, a perfect blend of science and function. The F-1 feels solid and natural. Holding a F-1 is a thrill. The machining is beautiful, and there is sense of reliability which instills confidence. The F-1 outstanding metering system ensures consistent quality images frame after frame. The F-1’s ability to absorb punishment and keep working is legendary.

    The only caveat I add is shooting the F-1 can become addictive. You will want to shoot the F-1 everyday all day. Then you begin to rationalize why you must purchase more FD lens, the extra bodies, the AE motor drives FN, the speed finders, the data backs, the AE Finder FN, multiple focusing screens, etc.

    The F-1 is a beautiful camera.

  8. #8

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    Fabulous camera; I love mine. Picked up a BGN-grade speed finder from KEH earlier this year and it makes the F1 a lot of fun to use, especially with the 85 1.8 I keep on it most of the time.

    If it's appropriate to mention, I have 2 of the concave 35s mentioned above (an online auction misstep; I want one I can use with E6) and only need 1.

    Phillip

  9. #9

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    I have two F-1s and two F-1ns, to name the mechanical cameras. I also have several Nikon F2s but I prefer the Canons. My mechanical F-1s are used with an MR-9 adapter and either a 386 or MS-76 battery. I have a very nice 35/2 FD SSC with the concave front element and cleared it very well with UV treatment. I later added the second version of the 35/2 FD SSC (convex front element, f/22 minimum aperture). That lens is similar in design to the later 35/2 New FD and is also very good. Find your favorite focusing screen or screens and get the L version of each. The L screens are brighter and will make using the camera easier for macro work and with slower lenses in general. It will be worhwhile to have the camera serviced so you can use it with confidence.

  10. #10
    benjiboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flatulent1 View Post
    Steve, if it is one of the first two versions, then it's mechanical. If it's the third version, it's electronic. Great cameras, all of them. You'll also want the 35mm f/2 breech lock lens with the concave front element; look for one where the elements look yellowed, it's perfect for B&W photography.
    Not strictly accurate and an oversimplification , the third and final version of the F1the F1-N has a part mechanical part electronic hybrid shutter even if the battery fails speeds from 1/125 sec. to 2000 sec. 1/90 sec (the flash sync speed) and B will work because they are mechanical, only the slow speeds from 1/60 sec. to 8 seconds are electronic and need battery power. http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography...e.html#Shutter.
    Last edited by benjiboy; 03-13-2012 at 12:00 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    Ben

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